reCAPTCHA and Duolingo: Luis von Ahn

How I Built This with Guy Raz | 25 May 2020 | 1h 06m | Listen Later | iTunes
Interview with Luis von Ahn. Describes the development of CAPTCHA to distinguish humans from bots signing up to Yahoo!; the development of reCAPTCHA to distinguish humans from bots whilst simultaneously digitising books; the development of Duolingo, a language learning app; and the iteration to find a sustainable business model for Duolingo.

Duolingo recently listed, which reminded me of this podcast, one of the most memorable and inspiring I’ve heard on innovation and business.

Matt Clancy on Innovation, Progress Studies and Remote Work

Ben Yeoh Chats | 15 July 2021 | 2h 05m | Listen Later | iTunes
Interview with Matt Clancy discussing progress; the importance of moral and social progress as well as technological progress; whether small or large teams are better for invention; agglomeration effects and how a declining agglomeration impact might make the case for remote work stronger; the role of innovation prizes and patents for incentivising innovation and if copyright is too long; innovation agencies; differences between UK and US university systems and advice for young people; and remote work.

Simon Baron-Cohen || How Autism Drives Human Invention

The Psychology Podcast | 18 February 2021 | 1h 16m | Listen Later | iTunes
Interview with Simon Baron-Cohen about his book The Pattern Seekers: How Autism Drives Human Invention. Covers the role of affective versus cognitive empathy, navigating autism amidst cancel culture, how autism drives human invention, the biological basis of creativity and autism, how we can nurture the inventors of the future, and more.

This is a fantastic book that deserves to be much better known.

Marvellous Medicine

The Documentary | 27 June 2021 | 0h 23m | Listen Later | iTunes
During the pandemic, the world witnessed how fast medicine can advance with an abundance of cash and collaboration. Is progress at this speed and cost sustainable? Explores whether drug development should still take decades, or whether we have learned how to permanently accelerate the process.

DARPA and How to R&D Right

ChinaTalk | 9 June 2021 | 0h 39m | Listen Later | iTunes
Interview with Ben Reinhardt exploring how institutions foster innovation. Includes the history of corporate research labs; their dependency on monopoly-like high company margins; incentive problems with academia- and venture-based research; factors behind DARPA’s success; why NASA wasted the past two decades; how administrative forces fetter high-variance research; and what needs to be subtracted from the US research ecosystem.

Education, The Great Stagnation, and Innovation with Noah Smith

Venture Stories | 8 June 2021 | 1h 00m | Listen Later | iTunes
Interview with Noah Smith discussing why colleges should try to emulate the Cal State and CUNY systems, which Noah says provide the best value for dollars in education; why the US should want to copy the Japanese and Korean healthcare systems, and the power that a national health insurance program has to drive cost down; why the oil shock precipitated the great stagnation, and the evolution (and non-evolution) of energy sources over the years; what climate economics got wrong and why the revolution in green energy will not only be about reducing carbon emissions but rather the abundance of cheap energy; inflation and monetary policy and how the fed really works; what the US should do to increase innovation, and Noah’s take on whether science and commercialization of discoveries is slowing down or not.

Anton Howes on Innovation History, the Improving Mindset & Progress Studies

Ben Yeoh Chats | 21 May 2021 | 1h 26m | Listen Later | iTunes
Interview with Anton Howes discussing lessons from the history of innovation, the improving mentality, Progress Studies, the case for a new “Great Exhibition”, economic stagnation, copyright, and more.

I highly recommend Anton’s newsletter, Age of Invention.

The End of Our 50-Year Stagnation | Tyler Cowen

The TED Interview | 3 June 2021 | 0h 58m | Listen Later | iTunes
Interview with Tyler Cowen. Backgrounds his contention that the economy has stagnated for the last 50 years. Argues that we’re commencing a new era of meaningful innovation, as evidenced by recent breakthroughs in science and medicine.