Texas is on a roll. People and companies are flocking to the Lone Star State. It’s an energy pioneer, its size means it has a significant say in national politics and its coffers are full, in part due to an influx of federal money. What’s behind the Texan boom?Texas’s governor Greg Abbott makes the case for his state. We go back to the abrupt end of a previous Texan boom. And developer Ross Perot junior explains why it’s easy to do business in Texas.John Prideaux hosts with Charlotte Howard and Alexandra Suich Bass. You can now find every episode of Checks and Balance in one place and sign up to our weekly newsletter. For full access to print, digital and audio editions, as well as exclusive live events, subscribe to The Economist at economist.com/uspod. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
Iraq, a hard place: 20 years after the invasion
America invaded Iraq 20 years ago this week. Today Baghdad is bustling, violence across the country is less frequent, but these gains have come at a horrific cost. India is getting a huge, essential infrastructure upgrade. And we say goodbye to one of our hosts.For full access to print, digital and audio editions of The Economist, subscribe here www.economist.com/intelligenceofferRuntime: 22 min Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
Money Talks: Discredit Suisse
Few would have predicted that the demise of Silicon Valley Bank, a niche Californian lender, would be followed by the failure of Credit Suisse. But on March 19 the banking crisis reached Zurich, where regulators brokered a fire sale that saw the ailing 167-year-old bank sold to rival UBS.On this week’s podcast, hosts Alice Fulwood, Tom Lee-Devlin and Mike Bird chart the spread of the crisis and examine its fallout. Richard Berner, a former advisor to the Treasury Secretary, explains: “Silicon Valley Bank was not systemic in life, but proved to be systemic in death.” And Huw van Steenis, who used to advise the chief executive of UBS, explains how the crisis has roiled bond markets.Sign up for our new weekly newsletter dissecting the big themes in markets, business and the economy at www.economist.com/moneytalks For full access to print, digital and audio editions, subscribe to The Economist at www.economist.com/podcastoffer Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
A bit Fed up: central banks’ dilemma
Central banks face a painful tradeoff: raise rates too quickly and risk banking-sector instability. Raise them too slowly and risk continued high inflation. Our correspondent travelled to Kyiv to meet a woman who has rescued hundreds of wild animals. And reflecting on the legacy of a woman who changed British attitudes toward sex.For full access to print, digital and audio editions of The Economist, subscribe here www.economist.com/intelligenceoffer Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
Babbage: Is GPT-4 the dawn of true artificial intelligence?
OpenAI's Chat GPT, an advanced chatbot, has taken the world by storm, amassing over 100 million monthly active users and exhibiting unprecedented capabilities. From crafting essays and fiction to designing websites and writing code. You’d be forgiven for thinking there’s little it can’t do. Now it’s had an upgrade. GPT-4 has even more incredible abilities, it can take in photos as an input, and deliver smoother, more natural writing to the user. But it also hallucinates, throws up false answers, and remains unable to reference any world events that happened after September 2021.Seeking to get under the hood of the Large Language Model that operates GPT-4, host Alok Jha speaks with Maria Laikata, a professor in Natural Language Processing at Queen Mary’s university in London. We put the technology through its paces with the economist’s tech-guru Ludwig Seigele, and even run it through something like a Turing Test to give an idea of whether it could pass for human-level-intelligence. An Artificial General Intelligence is the ultimate goal of AI research, so how significant will GPT-4 and similar technologies be in the grand scheme of machine intelligence? Not very, suggests Gary Marcus, expert in both AI and human intelligence, though they will impact all of our lives both in good and bad ways. For full access to The Economist’s print, digital and audio editions subscribe at economist.com/podcastoffer and sign up for our weekly science newsletter at economist.com/simplyscience. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.