Weekly Listens, #2

I listen to a lot of podcasts – a lot! – and so I started a series rounding up the most interesting episodes I’ve heard recently. I usually listen to a grab bag of topics, and this week was no different, covering feminism, the role of technology in mental health, the practice of tipping, and everyone’s favorite Mormon survivalist memoir, Educated by Tara Westover.

Marry Off Maiden NamesUnladylike

If you really think about it, why do we still have the tradition of women typically taking their husbands’ names after marriage? I know I’m keeping my own last name for both personal and professional reasons.

Why Does Tipping Still Exist? – Freakonomics Radio

Tipping is such a haphazard way of paying workers, and yet it becomes ever more popular. Dubner interviewed restaurant managers who employed other compensation methods to see if those worked; it was a fascinating episode.

Educated – The Stacks

One of my favorite book podcasts! The hosts go over books in lots of detail and I love hearing their opinions. This episode was no exception, and they also inspired me to read Bad Blood last month. My only regret is that we don’t read more books in common!

The ELIZA Effect – 99% Invisible

Back in the 1960s, an MIT professor created a simple chatbot he named ELIZA that could interact with users in a typed conversation. He had people try it out but didn’t expect them to start developing emotional ties to it – people would tell ELIZA things they’d never even told another human, and treated the program like a therapist. An excellent episode on the (still evolving) role of technology in our lives and how we could potentially use it for mental illnesses.

Do you guys listen to any of these? Are there any podcasts you recommend? I’m always looking for more!

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