41 episodes

A podcast about the automation of everything. Host Jennifer Strong and the team at MIT Technology Review look at what it means to entrust artificial intelligence with our most sensitive decisions.

In Machines We Trust MIT Technology Review

    • Technology
    • 5.0 • 1 Rating

A podcast about the automation of everything. Host Jennifer Strong and the team at MIT Technology Review look at what it means to entrust artificial intelligence with our most sensitive decisions.

    Encore: When an Algorithm Gets It Wrong

    Encore: When an Algorithm Gets It Wrong

    The team that brings you In Machines We Trust has much to be grateful for—a brand new season of this show, a big awards nomination for The Extortion Economy, a show about ransomware that we made with ProPublica, and our new investigative series, Curious Coincidence.

    We celebrate how far we've come with a look back at where it all started!

    --

    What happens when an algorithm gets it wrong? In the first of a four-part series on face recognition, Jennifer Strong and the team at MIT Technology Review explore the arrest of a man who was falsely accused of a crime using facial recognition. The episode also starts to unpack the complexities of this technology and introduce some thorny questions about its use.  

    We meet: 
    Robert and Melissa Williams 
    Peter Fussey, University of Essex
    Hamid Khan, Stop LAPD Spying Coalition

    Credits: This episode was reported and produced by Jennifer Strong, Tate Ryan-Mosley and Emma Cillekens. We had help from Karen Hao and Benji Rosen. We’re edited by Michael Reilly and Gideon Lichfield. Our technical director is Jacob Gorski. Special thanks to Kyle Thomas Hemingway and Eric Mongeon.

    • 19 min
    Welcome to Curious Coincidence

    Welcome to Curious Coincidence

    This is a detective story that’s unsolved. Hosted by investigative reporter Antonio Regalado, Curious Coincidence dives into the mysterious origins of Covid-19 by examining the genome of the virus, the labs doing sensitive research on dangerous pathogens, and questions of whether a lab accident may have touched off a global pandemic.
    A five-part investigation from MIT Technology Review.

    • 3 min
    Welcome to The Extortion Economy

    Welcome to The Extortion Economy

    This week we're sharing another tech show we made that we think you're going to love. It's called The Extortion Economy and it's a five-part series about the ransomware epidemic produced with ProPublica.
    See you soon with a whole new season of In Machines We Trust!!
    --
    A new-age iteration of the old-age extortion problem. A ransomware vigilante, a piracy (as in actual boats) expert, a school administrator, and a kidnapping victim share their experiences. This is part one.

    We Meet:
    Fabian Wosar, CTO, Emsisoft 
    Doug Russell, Director of Technology, Haverhill Public Schools
    Lisa Forte, Co-founder, Red Goat Cyber Security

    Credits: 
    This series is hosted by Meg Marco and produced by Emma Cillekens, Tate Ryan-Mosley and Anthony Green. It’s inspired by reporting from Renee Dudley and Daniel Golden from ProPublica. We're edited by Bobbie Johnson, Michael Reilly, Mat Honan and Robin Fields. Our mix engineer is Erick Gomez with help from Rebekah Wineman. Our theme music is by Jacob Gorski. Art is from Lisa Larson-Walker and Eric Mongeon. Emma Cillekens is our voice coach. The executive producers of The Extortion Economy podcast are Meg Marco and Jennifer Strong.

    Sounds From: 
    Video: Colonial Pipeline CEO Joseph Blount testifies at the Senate Homeland Security Committee, Source: CNBC Television, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DcYePKjI_mc
    Video: Roving Report Italy, Source: AP, http://www.aparchive.com/metadata/youtube/8b08bfc68a0b203d238aa8e0c4316e61 
    Video: CBS Evening News 1989-12-14, Source: CBS, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wHsbZEX5pQw

    • 22 min
    Encore: The AI of the beholder

    Encore: The AI of the beholder

    Computers are ranking the way people look—and the results are influencing the things we do, the posts we see, and the way we think.
    Ideas about what constitutes “beauty” are complex, subjective, and by no means limited to physical appearances. Elusive though it is, everyone wants more of it. That means big business and increasingly, people harnessing algorithms to create their ideal selves in the digital and, sometimes, physical worlds. In this episode, we explore the popularity of beauty filters, and sit down with someone who’s convinced his software will show you just how to nip and tuck your way to a better life.

    We meet:
    Shafee Hassan, Qoves Studio founder 
    Lauren Rhue, Assistant Professor of Information Systems at the Robert H. Smith School of Business

    Credits:
    This episode was reported by Tate Ryan-Mosley, and produced by Jennifer Strong, Emma Cillekens, Karen Hao and Anthony Green. We’re edited by Michael Reilly and Bobbie Johnson.
     

    • 21 min
    Encore: What’s Behind a Smile

    Encore: What’s Behind a Smile

    Researchers have spent years trying to crack the mystery of how we express our feelings. Pioneers in the field of emotion detection will tell you the problem is far from solved. But that hasn’t stopped a growing number of companies from claiming their algorithms have cracked the puzzle. In part one of a two-part series on emotion AI, Jennifer Strong and the team at MIT Technology Review explore what emotion AI is, where it is, and what it means.

    We meet: 

    Rana El Kaliouby, Affectiva

    Lisa Feldman Barrett, Northeastern University

    Karen Hao, MIT Technology Review


    Credits: This episode was reported and produced by Jennifer Strong and Karen Hao, with Tate Ryan-Mosley and Emma Cillekens. We had help from Benji Rosen. We’re edited by Michael Reilly and our theme music is by Jacob Gorski.

    • 23 min
    Encore: Attention Shoppers, You’re Being Tracked

    Encore: Attention Shoppers, You’re Being Tracked

    Cameras in stores aren’t anything new—but these days there are AI brains behind the electric eyes. In some stores, sophisticated systems are tracking customers in almost every imaginable way, from recognizing their faces to gauging their age, their mood, and virtually gussying them up with makeup. The systems rarely ask for people’s permission, and for the most part they don’t have to. In our season 1 finale, we look at the explosion of AI and face recognition technologies in retail spaces, and what it means for the future of shopping.

    We meet:
    RetailNext CTO Arun Nair,
    L'Oreal's Technology Incubator Global VP Guive Balooch,
    Modiface CEO Parham Aarabi
    Biometrics pioneer and Chairman of ID4Africa Joseph Atick

    Credits:
    This episode was reported and produced by Jennifer Strong, Anthony Green, Tate Ryan-Mosley, Emma Cillekens and Karen Hao. We’re edited by Michael Reilly. Our theme music is by Jacob Gorski.

    • 26 min

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