In 2015, Google’s photo-categorization software incorrectly identified Black people as “gorillas.” How did that happen? Innovation For All explores the ways innovation and society intersect (for better or worse) through long-form interviews.
Is Facebook really a monopoly? How can remote work get more diversity in tech? What’s in the terms of service we usually ignore? How can we build human-centered AI?
Host Sheana Ahlqvist created Innovation For All to help technologists and entrepreneurs think more critically about the impact of their work and make more inclusive products and businesses.
"When a system begins to remember us forever, and wherever we go.... we will not be our true selves. We will be the self we know it’s okay to remember."
-- Josh Lovejoy, Principal design manager, ethics and society at Microsoft.
Josh Lovejoy believes that human-centered design thinking can change the world for the better; that by seeking to address the needs of people - especially those at the margins - in ways that respect, restore and augment their capabilities, we can invent forms of technological innovation that would have otherwise been invisible.
IN THIS EPISODE YOU’LL HEAR:
What is a design ethicist?
How do autonomous AI systems take advantage of consumers?
What is predictive policing and how does it relate to AI ethics?
What is a deepfake?
What happens when you give up personal data in exchange for a more personalized experience?
Who should have the authority to make consequential decisions about AI?
Should diversity be a design goal?
Do you know anyone building great tech or working in artificial intelligence? Text them a link to this episode. Get shownotes for this an every episode at innovationforallcast.com.
How does Google make successful products when their users are infinitely diverse? Head of Product and Business Inclusion at Google, Reena Jana, shares the ways that this tech giant takes an inclusive approach to serve its users and be sensitive to different cultural norms. Reena shares how some of Google's best products were modified and improved through inclusive design and research practices.
What is product inclusion?
Best practices to overcome product inclusion challenges
The benefits and challenges of handling inclusion on a global scale
How Reena forged her role as the head of product and business inclusion
Product Inclusion success stories and how the team develops these products
How machine learning in helping Product Inclusion
How the product development process prioritizes diversity at each level
Why inclusivity is valuable
Free tools Google offers to help product inclusion outside of their organization
Do you know someone who works in technology? Help others build better, more inclusive products by texting them this episode. Shownotes for this and every episode are available on innovationforallcast.com.
Traditional approaches to business, design practices, and research can result in suboptimal or unfair systems. In this episode of Innovation for All, host Sheana Ahlqvist talks to Dr. Jutta Treviranus, Director of the Inclusive Design Research Centre at OCAD University in Toronto. They discuss what inclusive design is, why it is so important, and how we can design systems that accommodate everyone. Dr. Treviranus also reimagines the future of education. They cover her efforts to incorporate inclusivity into the current change-resistant educational system, her “Unlearning and Questioning” course, and her most recent project: developing a lab school for inclusive life-long learning. (Original Airdate: 9/26/18) YOU’LL LEARN:
How to use AR to combine real data with simulated data to create and experience new, imagined futures
What is the Pareto Principle (80/20 Principle)?
What are the real world consequences of ignoring the “20%”?
What is the Cobra Effect?
Get shownotes for this and every episode at innovationforallcast.com. Season 2 of Innovation For All will return May 29th, 2019!
Learn how Vantage Point is using VR to reduce sexual harassment at work through way, way better training. In this episode of Innovation For All, Sheana Ahlqvist speaks with Morgan Mercer, founder and CEO of Vantage Point. In this episode, you’ll learn: How Vantage Point leverages the benefits VR to combat sexual harassment; Examples of subtle & aggressive sexual harassment situations in the workplace; Why they take a bystander approach to training; Morgan (@themorganmercer) is product-enthusiast and idealist who founded the Virtual Reality immersive training company Vantage Point in 2017. Prior to founding Vantage Point, she concurrently served as the Head of Digital for an e-commerce startup and an Analyst for a digital agency where she has worked on high-profile contracts focused on attitude change and behavior change within the domain of complex social issues. Get shownotes for this and every episode at innovationforallcast.com. (Original Airdate: 11/30/18)
Do you support Innovation For All? Help others find us easily by reviewing us on Apple Podcasts or your favorite podcasting platform. Season 2 of Innovation For All will return May 29th, 2019!
Food delivery apps are putting mom and pop restaurants out of business. In this episode of Innovation For All, Chris Webb, CEO of ChowNow, shows the actual cost of meal delivery and how ChowNow is trying to mitigate those risks through an alternative business model.
How much food marketplaces charge the host restaurant, on top of the fees they charge the customer.
Does the restaurant know who is buying their food when ordered through a delivery app?
Why are restaurants willing to use delivery apps even when they are unprofitable?
What does a model that puts the restaurant first look like?
Learn more at orderbetter.com. Do you support the goals of Innovation For All? Help others find us easily by rating and reviewing us on Apple Podcasts or your favorite podcasting platform. Shownotes for this and every episode are available on innovationforallcast.com.
Cassie Betts is the founder of District2.Co, a technology company that connects brands/designers with factories to streamline the manufacturing process, and Made In South LA (MISLA),
a DevShop Academy. Hear how Cassie went from being homeless to being called “The Woman Turning South LA into Startup Land” by Forbes.
How she went from coding her first computer game at 9 to being homeless at 19, and how she turned that all around.
How do you help protect the poor from being displaced through gentrification?
Why more money should be spent on technology bootcamps instead of other diversity initiatives.
Note: This episode uses includes explicit language and includes some difficult topics about Cassie’s past that may be uncomfortable for some listeners. Please use your discretion.
Do you enjoy Innovation For All? Help others find us easily by rating and reviewing us on Apple Podcasts or your favorite podcasting platform.
"Tech should be built for good" says Amanda McGlothlin, co-founder and Chief Design Officer at HQ Network, a Los Angeles space start-up providing digital security products and services for individuals and businesses. As a leader in tech, Amanda believes that privacy is a fundamental human right. Hear her tactical, realistic approach to product design that truly protects the user's privacy.
In this episode you'll learn:
How ads and third-party trackers cost us money and make our technology less valuable.
The future of an ad-free user experience.
The new privacy laws that protect consumers from data breaches.
How companies can exercise more responsibility around their data practices to both protect the user and create success for their business.
What product managers and coders can do to support these companies who are willing to change their data practices for good.
What dark patterns are and how they apply to data and tracking.
Why it’s possible to collect data in moderation and still experience the benefits of analytics.
How consumers can protect their data and exercise safety while online.
Are you enjoying Innovation For All? Don't keep it to yourself! We want to share our message far and wide. You can help us by rating us and leaving a review on your favorite podcasting platform.
Get shownotes for this and every episode at innovationforallcast.com.
Learn how Khan Academy Kids provides digital educational resources to support kindergarten-readiness and help close early achievement gaps. In this episode of the Innovation For All Podcast, Sheana chats with Cyrena Chih, formerly the Director of Product & Business Development for Khan Academy Kids, a free educational program for children ages two to six.
· How to design kid-friendly apps
· What a well-executed adaptive learning program looks like
· Why they chose to turn from a for-profit to a non-profit
· How do we choose technology to alleviate early achievement gaps?
· The importance of parents co-playing with their kids.
Do you enjoy Innovation For All? Remember to rate and review us on your favorite podcasting platform. View shownotes for this and every episode at www.innovationforallcast.com.
How can FinTech leverage behavioral economics to help people become more financially secure? Sheana Ahlqvist talks to Wendy De La Rosa, co-founder of Common Cents Lab, a research lab that launches and tests products to help low-to-moderate-income Americans.
IN THIS EPISODE YOU’LL HEAR:
What kinds of Fintech products and apps effectively help people budget and save.
How certain Fintech apps could be hurting more than helping those below the poverty line.
Why lots of common features are ineffective and undermine our interest in savings.
Tricks from behavioural economics that anyone can use to get their spending habits in order.
How the needs of those in poverty are drastically different and what product managers can do to fit their unique needs.
Specific ways to remove friction around SNAP benefits, tax refunds and loan repayments to help people in poverty get ahead.
Frequency Budgets vs. Financial Budgets
What dark patterns are and how they apply to Fintech products.
How “round-ups” can help people save money in the long term.
How temptation plays a major role in how people deal with their money.
Sheana and Wendy also talk about the Stanford course Designing AI to Cultivate Human Well Being.
Common Cents Labs (Website)
Metlife Foundation (Website)
Designing AI to Cultivate Human Well Being (Course)
Admit Hub (App)
The Way We Work (TED Series)
Wendy’s Stanford Student Page (Website)
Wendy’s LinkedIn (Website)
30 Under 30 Forbes
Fei Fei Li
People in Appalachia are skeptical and cautious about technology. Dr. Sherry Hamby believes understanding how they think can be useful for living in a tech-centric world.
Dr. Sherry Hamby is a Research Professor of Psychology at the University of the South and Director of the Life Paths Appalachian Research Center, She’s best known for her work in violence measurement, poly-victimization, and resilience.
In this special episode, Sheana asks some of her favorite guests two key questions: What is something you've changed your mind about in 2018? And what is something you'd like to see become a larger part of the conversation in 2019?
You don't want to miss this one. Want to hear more from these great guests? Check out their full episodes:
Hear more from Jordan Axt (@jordanaxt) in Implicit Bias: Everything You're Afraid to Ask; Amanda Lotz (@drtvlotz) in Is Netflix a tech company or a media company?; Jutta Treviranus (@juttatrevira) in The 80/20 rule hurts everything from education to self-driving cars; Osonde Osoba (@OsondeOsoba) in When are "fair" algorithms better than accurate ones?; Eliza Khuner (@ElizaKhuner) in Facebook Can do more for working parents and Sally Hubbard (@Sally_Hubbard) in Google and Facebook are monoplies. Does it matter?
Technology can better serve humanity. In this episode of the Innovation For All Podcast, Sheana Ahlqvist speaks with Jake Kahana, founder of Bettvr With Age and Caveday. Jake shares these two projects that look very different on the surface. In fact, they are united by a common goal, to demonstrate the social impact of technology. Discover how Virtual reality (VR) can be therapeutic for seniors, why the typical 9-5 work day is a complete fallacy, and how to manage remote teams effectively. You’ll enjoy this episode if you are interested in VR or modernizing the workplace.
IN THIS EPISODE YOU’LL HEAR:
The difference between a social impact agency and cost marketing agency
The challenges in producing and distributing VR films 2 significant limitations for senior citizens: mobility and finances
The Impact of Bettvr With Age Physical and mental therapy using VR
What is Caveday?
How to improve your relationship to work
The dangers of overwork
How to communicate with a remote team
How important is establishing rules around communication, scheduling and productivity inside a team
3 Things you need when you work – accountability, motivation, and support
Resources your team can use to increase productivity
Undoubtedly, technology isn’t just for the young. It is for all ages – even seniors. This is what Jake is proving to exhibit in his Bettvr with Age project where he produces VR films for senior citizens. Seniors can still experience places and activities that their old age won’t permit them to do and visit through VR. We also discuss the science of productivity.
Through Caveday, Jake and his team are able to organize pieces of training for individuals and companies on how to do deep work since no one taught us how to work. There are ways you can improve your relationship to work to be productive and also avoid overworking. Jake identifies specific resources you can use to support your team’s productivity and happiness.
Full shownotes available at innovationforallcast.com.
Can AI really change the world? Or are its developing algorithms formalizing social injustice? When these highly-technical systems derive patterns from existing datasets, their models can perpetuate past mistakes.
In this episode of the Innovation For All Podcast, Sheana Ahlqvist discusses with David Robinson the threats of social bias and discrimination becoming embedded in Artificial Intelligence.
IN THIS EPISODE YOU’LL LEARN:
What is the role of technological advances in shaping society?
What is the difference between Machine Learning vs. Artificial Intelligence?
Social Justice Implications of Technology
What are the limitations of finding patterns in previous data?
How does should government regulate new, highly technical systems?
The need for more resources and more thoughtfulness in regulating data
Examples of data-driven issues in the private sector.
Removing skepticism of regulatory agencies in examining data models.
Authorities should remember that there are limits to what AI models can do.
David is the co-founder of Upturn and currently a Visiting Scientist at the AI Policy and Practice Initiative in Cornell's College of Computing and Information Science. David touches on how government regulatory agencies should examine new AI models and systems, especially as the technology continues to creep its way into our day-to-day lives. David discusses the importance of “ground truthing.” David emphasizes looking at a technology’s capabilities and limits before deciding on whether decision makers should implement it.
The Partnership on AI
Christan Salazar Volkmann
Human Rights Data Analysis Group
CONNECT WITH DAVID
Sign up for Equal Future newsletter
Follow David on Twitter
Learn more at innovationforallcast.com
If you enjoy this episode on AI and ethics, you might also enjoy WHEN ARE “FAIR” ALGORITHMS BETTER THAN ACCURATE ONES?
Are the tech giants doing enough for working parents?
Eliza Khuner questions whether the 9-to-5 full-time work schedule is limiting companies and employees, especially working parents. Eliza is a data scientist who worked at Facebook until she had her third child. Discover how she turned her concerns into a company-wide movement for more flexible work options, growing from private talks with HR to a public discussion with Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg to a viral WIRED article.
IN THIS EPISODE YOU’LL HEAR:
Do company standard policies really support working parents?
What happened when Eliza confronted Mark Zuckerberg and other Facebook executives with the demand for more flexible options for working parents?
Why should companies allow working parents to part-time or work from home?
Will this create a loss of culture in the workplace?
Are huge talents overlooked because most companies require full-time work?
Does creating more flexible solutions create ways to pay people less?
Sheana and Eliza also talk about the loss of workplace culture when there are flexible work options, the need for wellness rooms for breastfeeding mothers, and the support that should be given by companies to working parents. Eliza continues to speak about this so that companies are made aware of the problem and working parents can have the choice to live their lives while staying valuable to their company.
Visit innovationforallcast.com for URLs.
Learn how Vantage Point is using VR to reduce sexual harassment at work through way, way better training. In this episode of Innovation For All, Sheana Ahlqvist speaks with Morgan Mercer, founder and CEO of Vantage Point.
In this episode, you’ll learn:
How Vantage Point leverages the benefits VR to combat sexual harassment;
Examples of subtle & aggressive sexual harassment situations in the workplace;
Why they take a bystander approach to training;
Morgan (@themorganmercer) is product-enthusiast and idealist who founded the Virtual Reality immersive training company Vantage Point in 2017. Prior to founding Vantage Point, she concurrently served as the Head of Digital for an e-commerce startup and an Analyst for a digital agency where she has worked on high-profile contracts focused on attitude change and behavior change within the domain of complex social issues.
Learn more at innovationforallcast.com.
In this episode of Innovation For All, Sheana Ahlqvist speaks with Sally Hubbard, antitrust expert and investigative journalist at The Capitol Forum’s. Learn whether giant tech companies are building monopolies (spoiler alert: they are) and why that unfair advantage matters.
In this episode, you’ll learn:
What is Antitrust law?
Is fake news an antitrust problem?
How monopolies amplify inequality
What would it look like to unmonopolize big tech companies?
Learn more at innovationforallcast.com
Does the thought of negotiating terrify you? It could be costing you tens of thousands of dollars. In this episode of Innovation For All, Sheana speaks with Kathlyn Hart, salary negotiation coach and founder of the Be Brave Get Paid salary boot camp for millennial women.
Osonde Osoba, an engineer at the RAND Corporation and a professor at the Pardee RAND Graduate School, joins us in today’s episode of Innovation For All Podcast to talk about Fairness in Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning. Most AI’s today and in the future could have consequential impacts on the people, which is why Osonde is pushing for systems that are accurate, unbiased, and flexible.
Discover what areas should we be wary when handing over the decision-making to AI’s, why this isn’t just a technical issue, but also political, and who should we put in charge of these systems. Learn also the importance of accountability, ethics, privacy, and regulation in AI systems. Visit innovationforallcast.com for shownotes and links to Osonde's TEDX talk: Making AI Fair.
In today’s episode of the Innovation For All Podcast, we’re joined by Delali Kpodzo, the Co-Founder of We Are Onyx, a popular beauty destination for Black women and women of color. We dive into her entrepreneurial journey, why women of color need specific personal care solutions, and the state of the current beauty market.
Discover how a hair salon mishap led Delali to start We Are Onyx, which has reached more than $2 million in sales. Delali thinks that’s just the beginning in a vastly untapped market.
How can conscious consumers help women-owned businesses? Stella McShera explains why she launched equallet (@equallet), a local search-platform to help you connect with Women-Owned Businesses. Discover how equallet supports the growth of every female founder, consumer, or investor, and helps bridge the gender gap in business.
We also discuss how her experience as a mixed-race person has varied from place to place, and how that ultimately led her to get a science degree.
In this episode of Innovation for All, host Sheana Ahlqvist talks to Dr. Jutta Treviranus, Director of the Inclusive Design Research Centre at OCAD University in Toronto. Dr. Treviranus explains how traditional approaches to business, design practices, and research can results in suboptimal or unfair systems. They discuss what inclusive design is, why it is so important, and how we can design systems that accommodate everyone. Dr. Treviranus also reimagines the future of education. They cover her efforts to incorporate inclusivity into the current change-resistant educational system, her “Unlearning and Questioning” course, and her most recent project: developing a lab school for inclusive life-long learning. YOU’LL LEARN: • How to use AR to combine real data with simulated data to create and experience new, imagined futures • What is the Pareto Principle (80/20 Principle)? • What are the real world consequences of ignoring the “20%”? • What is the Cobra Effect?
Host Sheana Ahlqvist speaks with Hans Jørgen Wiberg, founder of Be My Eyes, a free mobile app that connects blind and visually impaired individuals with sighted volunteers through live video calls. Wiberg explains how Be My Eyes works, how he monetized an app while keeping it free for both sides of the marketplace, and how important it is to consider how blind people interact with the world around them when designing products and services
- What is microvolunteering?
- What is Be My Eyes and how does it work?
- How can we design products so that they are more accessible to the blind?
- How can one monetize and keep sustainable a product or service, especially one that is designed for a low-income population, without charging users?
- What are some challenges facing Be My Eyes and similar apps in their efforts to support specific populations worldwide?
Discover how you can learn about and reduce implicit bias in this conversation with Dr. Jordan Axt (@jordanaxt).
Learn: How can we reduce or change an individual’s level of implicit bias? What's the IAT? Does it work? Where do we go from here?
Have you ever wondered why you always like people a little more if they’re fans of the same baseball team as you, and like them a little less if they’re fans of your team’s archrivals? Or wondered if your sex, gender, sexual orientation, or even physical appearance had something to do with why you did or didn’t get that job you interviewed for?
These thoughts all relate to the concept of implicit bias. Implicit bias is related to thoughts, feelings, attitudes outside our conscious control that contribute to gender, race, and social status implications.