The weekly podcast looking at how our brains, psychology, and society are impacted by the ever-evolving technology that surrounds us. Every Monday we bring you the best stories and guests from around the world relating to technology, psychology, and society.
Are Fully Autonomous Vehicles Fast Approaching?
In July 2020, speaking via video at the World Artificial Intelligence Conference in Shanghai, Elon Musk stated that "I'm extremely confident that level five - or essentially complete autonomy - will happen and I think will happen very quickly."
While this is exciting, we still don't have a clear idea of how or when AI vehicles will become a normal part of our everyday lives.
In this episode, we look to explore how far away a future of fully autonomous vehicles really is, where we will see this transition first, and what it will take for us to arrive there. We also debate whether we could live in a future where humans will no longer be allowed to drive and AI-operated vehicles become legally mandatory.
To do this we invited a number of experts on the show to share their thoughts on this topic.
In this episode, we are joined by Jason Torchinsky, the Senior Editor for the automotive technology site Jalopnik, and the author of Robot, Take the Wheel: The Road to Autonomous Cars and the Lost Art of Driving. Torchinsky breaks down the five different levels of autonomous vehicles, Elon Musk's comments at last year’s World Artificial Intelligence Conference, and he explains how far he really thinks Tesla, and other companies, are from full autonomy.
We are also joined by Carl Anthony, the Detroit-based managing editor of Automoblog and AutoVision News. Anthony joins us to highlight what countries are leading the way for autonomous vehicle technology, and how consumer psychology stands to influence the production of autonomous vehicles.
And lastly, we are joined by Melanie Musson, an autonomous vehicle and insurance specialist that produces written content for the auto insurance comparison site AutoInsurance.org.
She explains how autonomous vehicles might make certain personal details irrelevant for car insurance companies, why manual driving could become unaffordable for the majority of drivers, and how car insurance companies stand to influence the psychology of consumers.
The Silk Road (Psychology After Dark)
In today's episode, we will be sharing an interview of Brains Byte Back host, Sam Brake Guia, on the podcast Psychology After Dark, where they discuss the moral and ethical implications of dark web markets.
If the name Psychology After Dark sounds familiar, the show's hosts Dr. Jessica Micono and Dr. David Morelos joined us on our previous Brains Byte Back episode “The Psychology of Conspiracy Theory Beliefs.”
In this episode of their show title “Silk Road,” they discuss what is crypto-anarchism, the philosophical underpinnings of dark web markets, and how dark web markets impact everyone even if they are not actively buying or selling goods or services. Sam also shares his thoughts on the case of Ross Ulbricht.
How To Unlock Your Creativity With Fun-Based Neuroscience Techniques
Creativity is a skill that so many corporations and businesses aspire to foster and harness. However, businesses often struggle to create a conducive environment for this, especially in workplaces riddled with dull meetings and never-ending PowerPoint presentations.
Many businesses place great importance on intelligence but forget the fun, and that is what our guests today are trying to change in the corporate world.
In this episode of the podcast, we are joined by Kenny White, Chief Creativity Architect and Co-Founder of Funworks, a creative agency using neuroscience research to bring fun into the corporate setting, allowing businesses and their employees to achieve their creative potential.
Alongside White, we are also joined by Erica Fortescue, neuroscience expert, and the former Creativity Architect at Funworks.
In the episode, White explains how a road trip from Alaska to Costa Rica led him to become a co-founder of the company and how the company created "(fun)workshops" in business environments, based on the founder's experience of writing in sketch comedy groups.
He highlights how the company uses sketch comedians alongside graphic illustrators to record ideas in image form to create an environment of fun and laughter to produce content.
Fortescue also explains how her work, alongside some of the most pre-eminent neuroscientists and psychologists in the world, allowed her to optimize Funwork's creative process.
You will learn what the phrase "Neurons that fire together, wire together" means, how we get stuck in thinking loops that stifle our creativity, and how to get out of these loops. Hint, it involves driving through a house (metaphorically).
She also shares with our listeners what fMRI and EEG studies tell us about how our unconscious produces creative ideas, and how we bring them to the surface.
The pair also give examples of unique work environments they produced to help come up with ideas -- like how they rented out the Swedish American Hall and sat in Viking chairs to come up with a new promotional video for the game "Assassin's Creed Valhalla," which became the best selling game in the franchise's history, with 1.7 million copies sold at launch.
And finally, Fortescue explains how open-ended questions can lead to better ideas. And even though this sounds straightforward, Fortescue provides an example that highlights how Funworks takes an unconventional, yet effective approach to this.
How To Retain More Information, Improve Recall & Learn A New Language
We now have access to more information at our fingertips than ever before. YouTube videos, podcasts, audiobooks -- all of these forms of media have allowed us to consume information faster than ever, but we still face the challenge of retaining this information.
In this episode, we will break down scientifically proven methods to retain more information and improve recall. To do this we are joined by two memory specialists.
The first is Scott Crabtree, the Chief Happiness Officer at Happy Brain Science, a company that strives to improve happiness for professionals and organizations using neuroscience.
In addition to Crabtree, we are also joined by Marissa Blaszko, a polyglot that speaks 6 languages and the founder of the website Relearn a Language.
Crabtree specializes in the science of learning, memory, and happiness. He shares with us the reason why we forget what we are looking for when passing from one room to another, why emotions are important to recall information, and how chocolate can help with memory.
From our discussion with Blaszko, you will learn the two secret weapons of polyglots, some of the most out-of-date myths about language learning that annoy her the most, and how you can create your own memory palace to store information.
Moreover, Blaszko also explains what are Memory Championships and how listeners can apply the techniques of champions in their own lives.
Bitcoin FOMO: How Our Psychology Drives The Price Of Bitcoin
Imagine seeing someone you fancy but you don't have the courage to ask them out and then someone else does, or not going to a party, only to see numerous pictures of all your friends having fun there later on, on social media.
Now imagine this, but instead of a party or a date, you lost out on thousands of dollars. That is the crushing feeling of fear of missing out, or FOMO as it is more commonly know, and the feeling many are probably having at this very moment due to Bitcoin.
In today's episode, we will explore how this FOMO, alongside other psychological factors, influences the price of Bitcoin. You will learn, what are the biological mechanisms that happen when we are having FOMO, how the news influences public opinion of Bitcoin, and the different types of Bitcoin investors, and what separates them psychologically.
Joining us on the show is Federico De Faveri, a full-stack software engineer and Bitcoin fanatic who has closely watched this space since 2014. We discuss how "Pump and Dump" scams work in the crypto world, how trading bots with stop losses create a domino effect that can lead to price dips or rallies, and the best ways to find trustworthy Bitcoin news.
But before our chat with Faveri, we take a step back to briefly understand how Bitcoin works, how it is mined, and the technical factors that influence its price. To do this, we are joined by Nick Hansen, CEO of Luxor Technology, the largest Bitcoin mining pool in North America. Hansen shares with us an analogy to better understand how Bitcoin works, how Bitcoins are mined, and what a Bitcoin halving is.
And stay tuned to the end where we ask both these Bitcoin experts what their predictions are for Bitcoin's price in 2021.
Changing The 'Chatter' Of Our Inner Voice From Destructive To Productive
As Elon Musk's Neuralink and other implantable brain-machine interfaces continue to advance, it seems like we will soon be living in a world where our mind can control everything.
But before we reach this future, it is important for us to first understand our own minds, how they work, and how to control them. In this episode, we will explore the power and importance of our inner voice.
To better understand the chatter in our heads, we are joined by Ethan Kross, an award-winning professor at the Psychology department of the University of Michigan. He is also the author of the new book CHATTER: The Voice in Our Head, Why It Matters, and How to Harness It, which comes out today.
In this episode, we discuss the TED talk "Mind Control: How to win the war in your head" and why our inner voice can often be very negative. We also look at how we can change this, shaping our inner dialogue to become more positive, thus creating the basis of cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT).
In addition to this, you will learn how meditation influences our inner voice, his work relating to social media and well-being, why using our name when talking with ourselves can help us overcome difficult situations. Kross also explains how he uses mental time travel to put problems into perspective.
Customer ReviewsSee All
A well produced podcast that always delivers on interesting topics! I'd recommend this to anyone!
Really fantastic podcast!
Really fantastic podcast! Great job to Sam and the Brains Byte Back team
Wide variety of interesting topics. Really enjoyed the digital nomad episode. Host has a great voice.