In Machines We Trust

In Machines We Trust

Host Jennifer Strong thoughtfully examines the far-reaching impact of artificial intelligence on our daily lives. Produced by MIT Technology Review, the podcast explores the rise of AI through the voices of people reckoning with the power of the technology, and by taking listeners up close with the inventors and founders whose ambitions are fueling the development of new forms of AI.


August 14, 2023 26 mins
Three years ago this week we launched this podcast on a mission to show the world how AI touches our everyday lives. It's been our great honor and privilege to make it through three seasons, a global pandemic, an unbelievable nineteen (19!!) award nominations, and a whole lot of tests and demos. Goodbyes are very hard to say, so instead we'll leave you with some of the show's highlights and an invitation to follow us as we continu...
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Hidden away in our voices are signals that may hold clues to how we’re doing, what we’re feeling and even what’s going on with our physical health. Now, AI systems tasked with analyzing these signals are moving into healthcare. We meet: Lina Lakoczky-Torres, student at Menlo College Angela Schmiede, Vice President of Menlo College. Grace Chang, CEO of Kintsugi David Liu, CEO of Sonde Health Liam Kaufman, former CEO of Winterlight ...
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AI is used in farming in some ways you might not expect, like for tracking the health of crops—from space. We travel from test farms to labs in the second installment of our series on agriculture, AI, and satellites.  We Meet: Joseph Liefer, senior product manager of autonomy at John Deere Julian Sanchez, director of emerging technology at John Deere Shely Aranov, CEO of InnerPlant Rod Kumimoto, CSO of InnerPlant Credits: This ep...
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In this special episode we bring you a live taping between the "Godfather of AI" Geoffrey Hinton and MIT Technology Review's Senior Editor for AI Will Douglas Heaven. This conversation was recorded at EmTech Digital, our signature AI event, in the MIT Media Lab. Credits: This episode was recorded in front of a live audience in Cambridge, Massachusetts with special thanks to Will Douglas Heaven, Amy Lammers and Brian Bryson. It was...
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May 3, 2023 20 mins
This episode, we get an insider's look at the ongoing chip war from the person who wrote the book on it, Chris Miller, professor at Tufts University and the author of Chip War. Join us for a live conversation from the MIT Media Lab at Tech Review’s Future Compute conference. Credits: This episode was recorded and produced by Jennifer Strong with help from Emma Cillekens and Anthony Green. We’re edited by Mat Honan and mixed by Gar...
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I Was There When is an oral history project that’s part of the In Machines We Trust podcast. It features stories of how breakthroughs and watershed moments in artificial intelligence and computing happened, as told by the people who witnessed them. In this episode we meet Cognitive Scientist Gary Marcus. CREDITS: This project was produced by Jennifer Strong, Emma Cillekens, and Anthony Green. It was edited by Mat Honan and mixed b...
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April 19, 2023 26 mins
The term ‘smart city’ paints a picture of a tech-enabled oasis—powered by sensors of all kinds. But we’re starting to recognize what all these tools might mean for privacy. In this episode, we meet a researcher studying how this is being applied in Iran and visit one of the nation’s top smart cities, to learn how its efforts there have evolved over time. We Meet: University of Oxford and Article19 Human Rights Researcher Mahsa Ali...
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April 12, 2023 20 mins
The best definitions of AI are vague, largely lack consensus and represent a huge challenge for lawmakers and legal scholars looking to regulate it. But back to back breakthroughs and rapid adoption of generative AI tools are making it feel a lot more real to everybody else. We examine how it’s possible that alone might be enough to push conversations about ethics further into focus. We Meet: MIT Technology Review Senior AI Report...
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April 5, 2023 18 mins
This episode we meet people building next generation tools for creativity who are thinking about how these AI models should be trained and deployed in order to be both useful and fair to artists. We hear from: Artist Holly Herndon Adobe CTO Digital Media Ely Greenfield Soundful CEO Diaa El All Links:
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March 29, 2023 18 mins
We're so excited this episode has been selected as a New York Festivals finalist! Please enjoy this encore edition and we'll see you back next week! Digital twins of humans capture the physical look and expressions of real humans. Increasingly these replicas are showing up in the entertainment industry and beyond and it gives rise to some interesting opportunities as well as thorny questions.  We speak to: Greg Cross, CEO and co...
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March 22, 2023 15 mins
I Was There When is an oral history project that’s part of the In Machines We Trust podcast. It features stories of how breakthroughs and watershed moments in artificial intelligence and computing happened, as told by the people who witnessed them. In this episode we meet Marc Raibert, the founder and chairman of Boston Dynamics. CREDITS: This project was produced by Jennifer Strong, Anthony Green and Emma Cillekens. It was edite...
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March 15, 2023 21 mins
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 wo...
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March 8, 2023 26 mins
How we train fighter pilots—both real and artificial—is undergoing a series of rapid changes. In order for these systems to be useful we need to trust them, but figuring out just how, when and why remains a massive challenge. In this second of a two-part series, we look at how AI is being used to teach human pilots to perform some of the most dangerous and difficult maneuvers in aerial combat, and we experience synthetic dogfightin...
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March 1, 2023 21 mins
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 Ce...
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February 22, 2023 19 mins
Late last year the US Department of Defense successfully ran a dozen flight tests in which AI agents piloted an experimental fighter jet. We explore the program that got it there and what this milestone means. We Meet: Chase Kohler, Edwards Air Force Base Sue Halpern, The New Yorker Paul Scharre, Center for a New American Security Additional sources and sound: DARPA's AlphaDogfight Trials:
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February 15, 2023 22 mins
A look at how artificial intelligence is starting to be used to support the elderly. We Meet: Dor Skuler, Intuition Robotics Greg Olsen, New York State Office for the Aging Marie Defrancesco Credits: This episode was reported and produced by Jennifer Strong and Anthony Green with help from Emma Cillekens. We’re edited by Mat Honan and mixed by Garret Lang, with original music from Garret Lang, and Jacob Gorski. Art by Stephanie A...
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February 8, 2023 18 mins
We asked ChatGPT to summarize this episode and this is what it wrote: "In the episode, the host discussed the increasing use of AI language models like ChatGPT in newsrooms. The host explained that ChatGPT, a large language model developed by OpenAI, is being used to automate tasks such as data analysis and writing, freeing up time for journalists to focus on more in-depth reporting. The host interviewed experts in the field who hi...
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February 1, 2023 18 mins
We're joined on stage by two startup founders working to bring automation to smaller scale farms. A live conversation from Lisbon, Portugal taped at one of the world's largest tech conferences, Web Summit. We meet: Praveen Penmetsa, CEO of Monarch Tractor Barry Lunn, CEO of Provizio AI  Credits: This episode was recorded and produced by Jennifer Strong with help from Emma Cillekens and Anthony Green. We’re edited by Mat Honan an...
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January 25, 2023 15 mins
A Roomba recorded a woman on the toilet. How did screenshots end up on Facebook? This episode we go behind the scenes of an investigation that uncovered how sensitive photos taken by an AI powered vacuum were leaked and landed on the internet.  Reporting: A Roomba recorded a woman on the toilet. How did screenshots end up on Facebook? Roomba testers feel misled after intimate images ended up on Facebook We Meet: Eileen Guo, MIT ...
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January 18, 2023 14 mins
Our reporting about farming, AI and satellites turned into three episodes of this podcast, which you can find linked here in the show notes, and as part of this reporting we also toured a satellite factory in downtown San Francisco, called Planet Labs. This week we bring you along for one of our audio postcards to hear how these satellites are built and tested. We meet:  Jacob Stern, director of test engineering at Planet Labs Cr...
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