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INDEX: Interviews

topic⁄INDEX: Interviews

Interviews

Mara Mills, Xiaochang Li, Jessica Feldman, Michelle Pfeifer

www⁄Mara, www⁄Xiaochang, www⁄Jessica and www⁄Michelle talk us through the history and politics of machine listening, from 'affect recognition' and the 'statistical turn' in ASR to automated accent detection at the German border, voiceprints and the 'assistive pretext'. This is an expansive conversation with an amazing group of scholars, who share a common connection to the www⁄Media, Culture, and Communications department at NYU, founded by Neil Postman in 1971 at the urging of Marshall McLuhan.

Interview conducted on 19 February, 2020

www⁄Transcript

Lauren Lee McCarthy

www⁄Lauren talks us through some of her many works concerned with smart speakers, machine listening and social relationships in the midst of surveillance, automation, and algorithmic living. We discuss: www⁄LAUREN, for which she attempted to become a human version of Alexa, www⁄SOMEONE, which won her the www⁄Prix Ars Electronica 2020 / Interactive Art +, and a range of related works and political questions.

Interview conducted on 22 September, 2020

www⁄Transcript

Alex Ahmed

www⁄Alex talks to us about www⁄Project Spectra, an online, community-based, free and open source software application for transgender voice training. We discuss speech pathology and the politics of pitch, along with the importance of grass-roots led tech projects and community-centred design.

Interview conducted on 21 September, 2020

www⁄Transcript

Stefan Maier

www⁄Stefan's 2018 www⁄dossier on machine listening for Technosphere puts the work of artists like George Lewis, Jennifer Walshe, Florian Hecker, and Maryanne Amacher into conversation with Google's wavenet. We talk about these and other works along with Stefan's own compositions which treat machine listening as a prepared instrument, ready to be detourned.

Interview conducted on 11 September, 2020

www⁄Transcript

Yolande Strengers and Jenny Kennedy

www⁄Yolande and www⁄Jenny provide a “reboot” manifesta in their book www⁄The Smart Wife: Why Siri, Alexa, and Other Smart Home Devices Need a Feminist Reboot, which lays out their proposals for improving the design and social effects of digital voice assistants, social robots, sex robots, and other AI arriving in the home.

Interview conducted on 11 October, 2020

www⁄Transcript

Jùnchéng Billy Lì

www⁄Billy tells us about his research on 'adversarial music', and in particular an attempt to produce a www⁄'Real World Audio Adversary Against Wake-word Detection Systems' for Amazon Alexa.

Interview conducted on 11 September, 2020

www⁄Transcript

André Dao

www⁄André talks to us about www⁄UN Global Pulse, the UN's big data initiative, and in particular one program which 'uses machine Learning to analyse radio content in Uganda'. We discuss the increasing entanglements of big tech, the UN and human rights discourse more broadly, as well as an emergent right to be counted.

Interview conducted on 4 September, 2020

www⁄Transcript

Angie Abdilla

Angie talks to us about www⁄Old Ways, New, the Indigenous owned and led social enterprise she founded, based on Gadigal land in Redfern, Sydney. We discuss www⁄Decolonising the Digital, Country Centered Design, a methodology which applies Indigenous design principles to the development of technologies for places, spaces and experiences, and how this contrasts with the ‘placelessness’ on which so many machine learning/listening systems are based.

Interview conducted on 1 September, 2020

www⁄Transcript

James Parker (w Jasmine Guffond)

This is the first of three radio shows as part of www⁄Jasmine's guest residency at Noods Radio. It features an interview with www⁄James about his research on machine listening, this curriculum, the project with Unsound, and a selection of electronic music.

Interview conducted on 1 September, 2020

www⁄Transcript

Vladan Joler

Vladan walks us through www⁄Anatomy of an AI System, his 2018 work with www⁄Kate Crawford, which diagrams the Amazon Echo as an anatomical map of human labor, data and planetary resources. We talk about the politics of visibility and method as well as Vladan's work with www⁄Share Lab, 'where indie data punk meets media theory pop to investigate digital rights blues'.

Interview conducted on 1 September, 2020

www⁄Transcript

Halcyon Lawrence

www⁄Halcyon talks us through some of her work on the politics of voice user interfaces: in particular accent bias, 'Siri discipline' and the ways in which smart speakers reproduce and hardwire longstanding forms of linguistic imperialism.

Interview conducted on 31 August, 2020

www⁄Transcript

Thomas Stachura

Thomas is CEO of www⁄Paranoid Inc, which makes devices that block smart speakers from listening. The company's mandate 'earn lots of money by increasing privacy, not eroding it' imagines an emerging privacy industry, as data mining and surveillance continues to become the dominant business model in silicon valley and elsewhere.

Interview conducted on 28 August, 2020

www⁄Transcript

Mark Andrejevic

www⁄Mark's recent book www⁄Automated Media considers the politics of automation through the 'cascading logics' of pre-emption, operationalism, and 'framelessness'. We talk through some of these ideas, along with the limits of 'surveillance capitalism' as an analytic frame, 'touchlessness' in the time of Covid, 'operational listening', what automation is doing to subjectivity… and how all this relates to reality TV.

Interview conducted on 21 August, 2020

www⁄Transcript

Shannon Mattern

Leading off from www⁄Shannon's essay www⁄"Urban Auscultation; or, Perceiving the Action of the Heart", which addresses machine listening in the pandemic, we talk about the stethoscope, the decibel and other histories of machine listening, along with its epistemic and political dimensions and artistic deployments.

Interview conducted on 18 August, 2020

www⁄Transcript

Kathy Reid

www⁄Kathy talks to us about her work with www⁄Mycroft, www⁄Mozilla Voice and now 3AI on open source voice assistants and the technics and politics of automatic speech recognition, along with a couple of utopian possibilities.

Interview conducted on 11 August, 2020

www⁄Transcript