Skip to content
Who's in the Video
Bill Nye, scientist, engineer, comedian, author, and inventor, is a man with a mission: to help foster a scientifically literate society, to help people everywhere understand and appreciate the science[…]

Asked by Matt what a universal superintelligent designer would be like, Bill Nye the Science Guy takes an evolutionary approach: In a way, we designed ourselves. There is no evidence to suggest a God-like creator orchestrated the rise of humanity. Rather, by way of evolution, we have developed into the beings we are today by adapting to nature. The process of natural selection has optimized and continues to optimize our physiology. It’s not superintelligent or universal, but it’s certainly not an accident why we are the way we are.

Matt: Bill, I’m Matt from Mexico and I wanted to know what would a universal superintelligent designer be like? Thank you.

Bill Nye: Matthew, buenos dias. I don’t know what a superintelligent overbeing would be like. People have speculated that there is an entity that has a plan for your life and in the U.S. anyway we use the English word God for this guy. And if that’s true there’s a lot of loose ends. So I’m not sure what the superintelligent entity would be up to.

But to give you something to think about, in contrast, the reason you and I are here is because of evolution. We are a result of millennia — of about four and a half billion years — of evolution on Earth. Now life started three and a half billion years ago — billions of years of evolution. And evolution doesn’t work that way. There is not a superintelligent entity at the top directing things. Instead things come into being through nature in our case on Earth from sunlight, the spin of the Earth, and the primordial warmth of the Earth. This energy induced chemical reactions to take place that led to things that could reproduce and then reproduce better and better after that. And it was bottom up.

The things that fit in the best with the situation around them, the environment, this three and a half billion years ago to today — not the things that lift the most weights in the gym. The thing that fits in the best led to this expression the survival of the fittest. And you and I are here because we’re good enough. We are not super — I don’t think — it doesn’t seem to be.

There’s no evidence to support the idea that we were designed by a super intelligent designer. Instead we’re good enough to be here. If we were a design by a super intelligent designer I mean wouldn’t the plumbing be a little different? Wouldn’t we have made some different choices about things? Would we have six fingers? Would we have a bigger brain? Why would I forget stuff? Why wouldn’t I have super eyesight? Why would I need glasses later in life? And so on. This is a cool question, but for me it fills me with reverence because you can ask it. You and I are made of primordial stardust. We are somehow at least one of the ways that the universe knows itself. That’s a great question, Matthew. Gracias. Carry on.