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The Good Robot

Author: Dr Kerry McInerney and Dr Eleanor Drage

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Join Dr Eleanor Drage and Dr Kerry McInerney as they ask the experts: what is good technology? Is ‘good’ technology even possible? And how can feminism help us work towards it? Each week, they invite scholars, industry practitioners, activists, and more to provide their unique perspective on what feminism can bring to the tech industry and the way that we think about technology. With each conversation, The Good Robot asks how feminism can provide new perspectives on technology’s biggest problems. 

84 Episodes
We’re expected to look amazing online, but also natural. We’re fighting against the gender pay gap, but also spend thousands on cosmetics. In this episode, Ellen Atlanta talks us through the paradoxes of feminism and beauty in the digital sphere.This episode includes an ad for the What Next|TBD podcast. 
In this episode, we talk to Dr. Isabella Rosner,  a curator at the Royal School of Needlework and a research consultant at Witney Antiques. Isabella tells us about the evolution of embroidery as a technology, and the complex relationship between needlework and feminism. We use this history to shed light on technology and feminism today.This episode includes an ad for the What Next|TBD podcast. 
In this episode, we talked to Darren Byler, author of Terror Capitalism and In the Camps, Life in China's High Tech Penal Colony. We discussed his in depth research on Uyghur Muslims in China and the role played by technology in their persecution. If you're just listening to this on Spotify or wherever you get your podcasts, you can now watch us on YouTube at The Good Robot Podcast.This episode includes an ad for the What Next|TBD podcast. 
In this episode we talk to Thuy Linh Thu, Professor of Social and Cultural Analysis at NYU. We talk about how good technology disperses power, while bad technology concentrates power, the racial history of dermatology, including the connections between the Vietnam War, medical experimentation on incarcerated men in the U. S., and retinol creams,. Please note that this episode contains references to medical experimentation and racial violence.This episode includes an ad for the What Next...
In this very special Good Robot hot take we talk about our new book, The Good Robot: Why Technology Needs Feminism. It's a beautiful new illustrated book where the top scholars, activists, artists, writers, technologists, all come together to respond to the prompt: good technology is... Kerry and Eleanor chat about getting its illustrations as tattoos, and you can vote for which one you think we should get tattooed. And then we have some more serious conversations about why good technology is...
In this episode we chat to Shannon Vallor, the Bailey Gifford professor in the ethics and data of AI at the University of Edinburgh and the Director for the Centre for Technomoral Futures. We talk about feminist care ethics; technologies, vices and virtues; why Aristotle believed that the people who make technology should be excluded from citizenship; and why we still don't have the kinds of robots that we imagined that we'd have in the early 2000s. We also discuss Shannon's new book, Th...
In this episode, we talk to Emily M. Bender and Alex Hanna. AI ethics legends and now the co-hosts of the Mystery AI Hype Theatre 3000 podcast which is a new podcast where they dispel the hype storm around AI. Emily is a professor of linguistics at university of Washington and the co-author of that stochastic parrots paper that you may have heard of, because two very important people in the Google AI ethics team allegedly got fired over it, and that's Timnit Gebru and Meg Mitchell. And ...
This week we chat to Melissa Heikkilä, a senior tech reporter for MIT Tech review, about ChatGPT, image generation, porn, and the stories we tell about AI. We hope you enjoy the show.This episode includes an ad for the What Next|TBD podcast. 
In this episode, we talked to Rebecca Woods, a Senior Lecturer in Language and Cognition at Newcastle University.  We have an amazing chat about language learning in AI, and she tells us how language is crucial to how ChatGPT functions. She's also an expert in how children learn languages, and she compares this to teaching AI how to process languages. This episode includes an ad for the What Next|TBD podcast. 
Happy holidays from your favourite jingle belles at the Good Robot podcast! In this episode we celebrate both the holidays and Eleanor's new book, The Planetary Humanism of European Women's Science Fiction: An Experience of the Impossible, which is a history of women's utopian science fiction from 1666 to 2016. We talk about the ways that women have imagined better places and times and worse ones throughout history, as well as what utopia means politically and why we need it, lesbian ba...
In this episode we talk to British physicist Jess Wade about the 1923 Wikipedia pages (and counting) she’s created and edited in her aim to put more women and more people of colour onto the online encyclopaedia.  This episode includes an ad for the What Next|TBD podcast. 
In this episode we welcome Eleanor back from Slovenia, where she was speaking at a conference on digital sovereignty. But what is digital sovereignty, and what does it mean for you and your data? This episode includes an ad for the What Next|TBD podcast. 
In this episode, we talked to Azerbaijani journalist Arzu Geybulla, a specialist on digital authoritarianism and its implications on human rights and press freedoms in Azerbaijan. She now lives in self-imposed exile in Istanbul. Aside from writing for big publications like Al Jazeera, Eurasianet, Foreign Policy Democracy Lab, she also founded Azerbaijan Internet Watch and is writing a political memoir about a lost generation of civil society artists in Azerbaijan. We chat to Arzu about ...
In this episode, we speak to K Allado-McDowell a writer, speaker, and musician. They've written three books and an opera libretto, and they've established the artists and machine intelligence program at Google AI. We talk about good technology as healing, the relationship between psychedelics and technology, utopianism and the counter-cultural movements in the Bay Area, and the economics of Silicon Valley. This episode includes an ad for the What Next|TBD podcast. 
In this episode, we talk to Giada Pistilli, Principal Ethicist at Hugging Face, which is the company that Meg Mitchell joined, following her departure from Google. Giada is also completing her PhD in philosophy and ethics of applied conversational AI at Sorbonne University. We talk about value pluralism and AI, which means building AI according to the values of different groups of people. We also explore what it means for an AI company to actually take AI ethics really seriously as well as th...
In this episode, we talk to Dr. Matt Mahmoudi, a researcher and advisor on artificial intelligence and human rights at Amnesty International, and an affiliated lecturer at the Department of Sociology at the University of Cambridge. We discuss how AI is being used to survey Palestinians in Hebron and East Jerusalem, both in their bedrooms and in their streets, which Dutch and Chinese companies are supporting this surveillance, and how Israeli security forces have been pivotal to the training o...
In this episode, we hear all about Kerry’s trip to Japan (spoiler alert: she loved it) and explore her work on anti-Asian racism and AI. Kerry explains what the very long word ‘techno-Orientalism’ means and how fears and fantasies of East Asia or the so-called ‘Orient’ shape Western approaches to technology and AI. We chat about how US sci-fi genres like cyberpunk use imagery from East and South East Asia to connote scary, dystopian futures where the ‘human’ is indistinguishable from the ‘mac...
In this episode, we talk to Dr. Hayleigh Bosher, Associate Dean and Reader in intellectual property law at Brunel University and host of the podcast Whose Song is it Anyway?, a podcast on the intersections of IP [intellectual property] and the music industry. Hayleigh gives us some great insight into tomorrow's legal disputes over AI and music copyright. She tells us why AI can never create an original song, what it takes to sue a generative AI company for creating music in the style of someo...
In this episode we talk to Meredith Broussard, data journalism professor at the Arthur L. Carter Institute at New York University. She's also the author of Artificial Unintelligence, which made waves following its release in 2018 by claiming that AI was nothing more than really fancy math. We talk about why we need to bring a little bit more friction back into technology and her latest book More Than a Glitch, which argues that AI that's not designed to be accessible is bad for everyone...
In this episode we chat to Grace DiIlon, Professor in the Indigenous Nations Studies Department at Portland State University. Grace, an Anishinaabe cultural critic and a phenomenal storyteller in her own right, gives an overview of the fiction and science books by indigenous writers doing very cool things. We talk about apocalypse and healing, ceremonial science, and the genre of native slipstream. This episode includes an ad for the What Next|TBD podcast. 
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Mar 3rd
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