February 17, 2017 – Utopia Is Creepy

My guest on this program is Nicholas Carr, author of The Shallows, a Pulitzer Prize finalist, and the Glass Cage, among other books. Former executive editor of the Harvard Business Review, he has written for The Atlantic, the New York Times, and Wired. His most recent book is Utopia is Creepy and Other Provocations, which gathers a decade’s worth of posts from his blog, Rough Type, as well as his seminal essays. It offers an alternative history of the digital age, chronicling its roller-coaster crazes and crashes, its blind triumphs, and its unintended consequences.

As a follow up to this on-air conversation, Mark Zuckerberg made an announcement the day before. Here are links to an NPR story about it, Nicholas Carr’s Rough Type blog post response, and the original text of Zuckerberg’s announcement:

Facebook wants Great Power, But What About Responsibility?
Zuckerberg’s World by Nicholas Carr
Building Global Community by Mark Zuckerberg

December 23, 2016 – When Robots Rule the Earth

My guest on this program is Robin Hanson, associate professor of economics at George Mason University, and a research associate at the Future of Humanity Institute of Oxford University. His academic training is in physics, philosophy, and social science, and he has worked for years in artificial intelligence at Lockheed and NASA. His recent book is The Age of Em: Work, Love, and Life when Robots Rule the Earth, in which he provides a thought experiment about our technological future when brain emulations, or “Ems,” proliferate, perhaps a hundred years from now.

August 19, 2016 – Overcomplicated Technology

My returning guest on this program is scientist and researcher Samuel Arbesman, and we’ll be talking about his new book, Overcomplicated: Technology at the Limits of Comprehension, in which he grapples with the mystery and wonder of 21st century technology and how we should relate to complex technological systems.

April 24, 2015: Mind & Media

My guest on this program is UCLA Distinguished Professor of Psychology and Director of the Children’s Digital Media Center, Patricia Greenfield. Her central theoretical and research interest is in the relationship between culture and human development and she sees media as a key component of modern culture. She is a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and recipient of an Award for Distinguished Contributions to Cultural and Contextual Factors in Child Development from the Society for Research in Child Development. We’ll be talking about her classic book, Mind and Media: The Effects of Television, Video Games, and Computers.