Aligning AI with our values

Guess what folks: we are celebrating a birthday this week. That’s right, Many Minds has reached the ripe age of one year old. Not sure how old that is in podcast years, exactly, but it’s definitely a landmark that we’re proud of. Please no gifts, but, as always, you’re encouraged to share the show with a […]

Culture, innovation, and the collective brain

Greetings friends and happy February! Today’s episode is a conversation with Dr. Michael Muthukrishna, an Associate Professor of Economic Psychology at the London School of Economics.Michael’s research takes on a suite of topics that all start from a single big question: Why are we so different from other animals? Part of the answer has to […]

The savvy cephalopod

Today we’ve got another “behind the paper” episode for you. In it, we’re talking about some of the most alien-seeming yet charismatic creatures around. I chatted with Dr. Alex Schnell, a Comparative Psychologist and Research Fellow at Cambridge University. We discuss a paper she recently published with a few colleagues titled, ‘How intelligent is a […]

Telling Tracks

Welcome to our first episode of 2021! Super excited to get this year going—we’ve got, I promise, lots of great conversations in store for you. But this week, to kick things off, we have a brief audio essay. It’s about tracks—that’s right, footprints. This might seem at first glance like a narrow topic but, fear […]

Humans, Dogs, and Other Domesticated Animals

When you think of domestication, I bet you think of farm animals—you know cows and pigs and alpacas—or maybe house pets. You might think of corn or wheat or rice. You probably don’t think of us—humans, Homo sapiens. But, by the end of today’s conversation, I’m guessing you will. For this episode I talked with […]

Lost in Translation?

Today we’ve got another installment in our “behind the paper” format. In case you missed the first iteration, these are 30-minute or so interviews that dig into recent notable papers.This episode takes on a timeless question: Do concepts differ from one language to the next, or are they basically the same? Maybe you think we […]

From Where We Stand

Welcome back folks! Today’s episode is a conversation about the nature of knowledge. I talked with Dr. Briana Toole, an Assistant Professor of Philosophy at Claremont McKenna College. Briana specializes in epistemology—the branch of philosophy that grapples with all things knowledge-related. In her work she is helping develop a new framework called “standpoint epistemology.” The […]

Clever Crows and Cheeky Keas

Welcome back everyone! Hope you all had a great August. And hope you’re all—like me—jazzed about the start of Season 2 of Many Minds. There’s a viral video clip from 2014—maybe you’ve seen it. It features a subject in a pretty remarkable psychology experiment. He’s put in room full of different apparatuses, one of which […]

Do Baboons Understand Death?

We’ve got a little something different for you today­—a new format we’ll be experimenting with over the next few months. You can think of it as a kind of “behind the paper” series. The idea is to take notable articles from the last year or so and talk to their authors. We’ll delve into each […]

When the Mind’s Eye Can’t See

Imagine a friend’s face. How much detail do you see? Do you see the color of their hair? What about the curve of their smile? For many people, this mental image will be relatively vivid. A somewhat watered down picture, sure, but still a picture—still something similar to what they would see if that friend […]