42 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
    • 4.3 • 222 Ratings

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.

    Who watches AI watching students?

    Who watches AI watching students?

    A boy wrote about his suicide attempt. He didn’t realize his school's software was watching.
    While schools commonly use AI to sift through students' digital lives and flag keywords that may be considered concerning, critics ask at what cost to privacy.

    We Meet:
    Jeff Patterson, CEO of Gaggle
    Mark Keierleber, investigative reporter at The 74
    Teeth Logsdon-Wallace, student
    Elizabeth Laird, director of Equity in Civic Technology at Center for Democracy & Technology

    Sounds From:
    "Your Heart is a Muscle the Size of Your Fist" from the band Ramshackle Glory's 2011 album Live the Dream.
    "Spying or protecting students? CBS46 Investigates school surveillance software" from CBS46 in Atlanta, GA on February 14, 2022.
    "Student Surveillance Software: Schools know what your child is doing online. Do you?" from WSPA7 News in Greenville, SC on May 5, 2021.
    "Spying or protecting students? CBS46 Investigates school surveillance software" from News 5 in Cleveland, OH on February 5, 2020.

    Credits:
    This episode was produced by Anthony Green and Emma Cillekens with reporting from Mark Keierleber. It was edited by Jennifer Strong and Michael Reilly, and mixed by Garret Lang with original music from Jacob Gorski. Art by Stephanie Arnett.
    https://www.theguardian.com/education/2021/oct/12/school-surveillance-dragnet-suicide-attempt-healing
    https://www.the74million.org/contributor/mark-keierleber/
    You can support our journalism by going to http://www.techreview.com/subscribe.

    • 21 min
    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

Customer Reviews

4.3 out of 5
222 Ratings

222 Ratings

dmholcomb ,

Great Show

Really enjoyed listening to your episode on “What’s Behind a Smile.” Going to check out more episodes and will recommend it to others.

Great work!

If you are interested, check out a manufacturing podcast I host — “The Right Direction Podcast” from Compass Precision.

The green iPhone ,

How Pricing Algorithms Learn To Collide

Excellent research, well done and very informative!!

Mrs spg ,

Algorithm review

I thought this episode was excellent! I really enjoyed the information about how prices are set! It gives a completely different view of supply and demand! Keep up the good work! Loved it!

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