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AI Podcast 3.0: Dial M for Mechanization
It's the thrilling conclusion to our three-part series on AI — the world premiere of the first episode of Planet Money written by AI. In Part 1 of this series, we taught AI how to write an original Planet Money script by feeding it real research and interviews. In Part 2, we used AI to clone the voice of our former colleague Robert Smith.Now, we've put everything together into a 15-minute Planet Money episode. And we've gathered some of our co-hosts to listen along.So, how did the AI do? You'll have to listen to learn what went surprisingly well, where it fell short, and hear reactions from the real-life hosts whose jobs could be at risk of being replaced by the machines. (This is part three of a three-part series. Click here for part one and for part two of our series.)This episode was produced by Emma Peaslee and Willa Rubin. It was engineered by James Willetts and fact-checked by Sierra Juarez. Keith Romer edited this series and Jess Jiang is our acting executive producer. In the radio play, Mary Childs voiced Ethel Kinney; Willa Rubin voiced Alice; and Kenny Malone voiced Dr. Jones and Dial Doom 5000.Help support Planet Money and get bonus episodes by subscribing to Planet Money+ in Apple Podcasts or at plus.npr.org/planetmoney.
AI Podcast 2.0: The host in the machine
In Part 1 of this series, AI proved that it could use real research and real interviews to write an original script for an episode of Planet Money.Our next task was to teach the computer how to sound like us. How to read that script aloud like a Planet Money host.On today's show, we explore the world of AI-generated voices, which have become so lifelike in recent years that they can credibly imitate specific people. To test the limits of the technology, we attempt to create our own synthetic voice by training a computer on recordings of former Planet Money host Robert Smith. Then we introduce synthetic Robert to his very human namesake.There are a lot of ethical, and economic, questions raised by a technology that can duplicate anyone's voice. To help us make sense of it all, we seek the advice of an artist who has embraced AI voice clones: the musician Grimes.(This is part two of a three-part series. For part one of our series, click here)This episode was produced by Emma Peaslee and Willa Rubin, with help from Sam Yellowhorse Kesler. It was edited by Keith Romer and fact-checked by Sierra Juarez. Engineering by James Willetts. Jess Jiang is our acting executive producer. We built a Planet Money AI chat bot. Help us test it out: Planetmoneybot.com.Help support Planet Money and get bonus episodes by subscribing to Planet Money+ in Apple Podcasts or at plus.npr.org/planetmoney.
AI Podcast 1.0: Rise of the machines
We used to think some jobs were safe from automation. Though machines have transformed industries like agriculture and manufacturing, the conventional wisdom was that they could never perform what's called "knowledge work." That the robots could never replace lawyers or accountants — or journalists, like us.Well, ever since the release of artificial intelligence tools like ChatGPT, it feels like no job is safe. AI can now write essays, generate computer code, and even pass the bar exam. Will work ever be the same again?Here at Planet Money, we are launching a new three-part series to understand what this new AI-powered future looks like. Our goal: to get the machines to make an entire Planet Money show. In this first episode, we try to teach the AI how to write a script for us from scratch. Can the AI do research for us, interview our sources, and then stitch everything together in a creative, entertaining way? We're going to find out just how much of our own jobs we can automate — and what work might soon look like for us all.(And, in case you're wondering... this text was not written by an AI.)This episode was produced by Emma Peaslee and Willa Rubin. It was edited by Keith Romer. Maggie Luthar engineered this episode. It was fact-checked by Sierra Juarez. Jess Jiang is Planet Money's acting executive producer. Help support Planet Money and get bonus episodes by subscribing to Planet Money+ in Apple Podcasts or at plus.npr.org/planetmoney.
Green energy gridlock
Lyle Jack wants to build a wind farm on the Pine Ridge Reservation in South Dakota. But to make the project work, he has to connect that wind farm to the electric grid. Which is easier said than done. On today's show - how the green energy revolution may live, or die, by bureaucrats trying to untangle a mess of wires. This episode was produced by Willa Rubin. It was edited by Sally Helm, fact-checked by Sierra Juarez, and engineered by Katherine Silva. Jess Jiang is our acting executive producer.Help support Planet Money and get bonus episodes by subscribing to Planet Money+ in Apple Podcasts or at plus.npr.org/planetmoney.
It's time for another installment of ... Planet Money Predictions! *air horn* Last year, we invited two economic forecasters to tell us what they saw coming for jobs, the housing market, and inflation. And now they're back. Which means it's time to find out whose predictions were more on the money, and send the victor to the next round, where they face off against a new forecasting phenom. Since our last game, housing and inflation have cooled, but the job market keeps going strong. And the possibility of a recession still looms large. Our forecasters tell us what they see in the economy now, and what they expect in the months ahead.This episode was produced by James Sneed. It was engineered by Katherine Silva. It was fact-checked by Sierra Juarez and edited by Molly Messick. Jess Jiang is our acting executive producer.Help support Planet Money and get bonus episodes by subscribing to Planet Money+ in Apple Podcasts or at plus.npr.org/planetmoney.
Wanna see a trick? Give us any topic and we can tie it back to the economy. At Planet Money, we explore the forces that shape our lives and bring you along for the ride. Don't just understand the economy – understand the world.
Wanna go deeper? Subscribe to Planet Money+ and get sponsor-free episodes of Planet Money, The Indicator, and Planet Money Summer School. Plus access to bonus content. It's a new way to support the show you love. Learn more at plus.npr.org/planetmoney