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Positive Feedback Loop

Author: Positive Feedback Loop

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Positive Feedback Loop! We discuss tech, history, and culture and we have fun disagreeing with each other. ;-) Co-hosts: Luis, Ray, and Steph. Find us on Twitter:!

"Lost episodes" (episodes we've removed):
Ep.38 (Watercooler chat - mind-reading robots eat your money)
73 Episodes
In this episode, you’ll learn what midwifery is all about from a professional midwife who runs a birth center in Northern California. Our special guest Allison Blackham talks about the relationship midwifery has with the healthcare industry, the history of midwifery, the risks and rewards of childbirth, and even the odd requests she has gotten from expecting families. Learn about how COVID-19 has impacted her practice and what childbirth might look like in the future.
When you think of authority, what is the first color that you think of? What is authority? What are social contracts? Where does authority come from? What is the difference between power and authority? Commercial: Listen to more episodes! Looking through The Power of Political Authority, a book by Michael Huemer. Implicit and explicit consent. What if you started as a non-citizen? What is the role of religion in political authority? What is a nation state? Is the United States a nation state? We discuss a little about diversity and geography and how that affects power dynamics globally. Does power belong with the strongest person? How has warfare changed? If the president is removed from office and loses authority, will he lose power and influence?
Why do we have leap day and when does the world actually skip leap day? What is your preferred calendar? Let’s ponder how and why we measure time in this episode all about everything you might not know about calendar systems.
Ep. 70: Jealousy

Ep. 70: Jealousy


In this episode, we begin by pondering past moments of jealousy and defining what jealousy really is. Then we dig into: jealousy vs. envy, comparing ourselves to others, and resources as limited vs. abundant. We also talk about how to deal with jealousy, including giving a word to the opposite of jealousy (inspired by Stella the dog!) and how we feel empathy. Commercial brought to you by Thieves. Bonus material: we try to invent a musical version of “Stay Crazy”.
In this episode, we talk about what quantum internet is and how it differs from the internet as we know it today. Photons, hacking, teleporting, qubits, quantum state, entanglement, and more. If you want to understand more about quantum internet, listen to this episode! Brought to you by Positive Feedback Loop. Commercial: Deep Space Realtors.
Ep. 68: Consumerism

Ep. 68: Consumerism


What is a consumer? Producers vs. consumers in the ecological world What is the difference between consumerism and materialism? Are consumers more empowered than before? Protecting consumers Marketing and consumer behavior The obsession with acquisition Black Friday Morality and Spending (e.g., “Fair Trade”) Customizing consumerism Clothing subscription services Waste vs. Giving to the Needy Minimalism
With guest Pascal Guyon! Pascal is a musician, an investor, and more. In this episode, he shares his insights about the music industry and where it’s headed.
Our guest was Lyn Ulbricht of the Free Ross movement. Ross Ulbricht was convicted of crimes associated with the Silk Road. Topics discussed in this episode: Ross’s experience in federal prison. Libertarian philosophy. Becoming a public figure; opportunities for public speaking. Learning about law, government, and rights. Seeking clemency. Experiences with the media. Having a family member in prison. The courtroom experience. Internet privacy. Is the law keeping up with technology? The War on Drugs. Is understanding of new technologies a generational capability—can someone of another generation fairly judge a crime done with a technology he/she doesn’t understand? Is Ross’s sentence fair, and what was the purpose of his sentence? Will other marketplaces like Silk Road exist after this? Is this a tipping point in history? The petition (started July 2018); 60k signatures in the first month, now nearing 141k. What should a nonviolent charge look like? The damage of nonviolent crimes. Vicarious liability. What is life like in federal prison? What does this mean for the future of nonviolent crimes, especially those that use new technologies like bitcoin and the dark web?
Is memory reliable? Has technology changed how we remember? What is the purpose of memory? How do you want to be remembered? All this and more in this episode about memory.
Ep. 64: Beyond the Event

Ep. 64: Beyond the Event


Ray and Steph recorded this week without Luis, but he’ll be back next week! In this episode about events, Ray and Steph discuss some memorable events and try to determine what defines an event. Does an event have to have a purpose, a focus? Hackathons, VR, Facebook Live. Event logs in computing. Event as initiation. Burning man. An unplanned event. In this episode, we wax philosophical to analyze how culture has shaped events (and how events have shaped culture). Commercial: Escape the Event.
In this episode we define truth and we compare truth vs. reality. Then, we talk about the role of data in truth-seeking, and ask, will the truth set us free? Is ignorance bliss? What does it mean to be a truth seeker? The responsibility of truth, painful truths, perceptions of truth, truth vs. belief, truth in religion and science. What is the value of truth? Do you challenge truth? Uncomfortable truths. Avoiding the truth. Also, enjoy our commercial: the Truthify App.
In this episode we start with some stories about famous liars. Then we talk about types of lies. We discuss pathological liars, influence, the dating world, and employment. Commercial: Lie Detector Siren. Are we lying more? Social media, justification, blockchain’s impact, why and when we lie, social pressure.
What happens—or could happen—to our data after we die? Listen to Ray, Luis, and Steph talk about the possibilities.
In this episode, we talk about forms of meditation and prayer. We discuss topics such as Tai Chi, taking the time to think, running as meditation, Ray's temple visit, the role of silence, the rhythms of our bodies, chanting, ASMR, breathing, singing, flying, and slowing down. Also, joining us during the commercial for a "moment of ohm."
In this episode, we talk about attention. Have our attention spans gotten longer or shorter or stayed the same? What distracts us? How does the future of marketing impact our attention? Can AI lose attention, or is AI attention limited? What are the dimensions of attention? Is attention quality tied to the quality of our relationships? Cultural attention cues—what does attention look like? What metrics do marketers use to measure attention? What are the biometric markers for attention?
What defines an influencer? The Present: How much do influencers get paid? How do you become an influencer? What is more effective for advertising: macro-influencers or micro-influencers? The dark side of influencer marketing The Past: The history of influencers — Ancient Rome, Coco Wine, Vaudeville, etc. Commercial: DinnerSmash The Future: AI influencers, the future of human influencers, the shifting power of influencers
What are some popular conspiracy theories? Can a conspiracy theory be proven wrong? How have social media propagated conspiracy theories and what are the implications for free speech? Should communication platforms limit or block conspiracy theorists? What is your favorite conspiracy theory?
What Kari is working on at Screen Door Labs, what augmented reality can do for first responders, AR features that are well-suited for serving first responders, the hardware she has worked with, and where Kari thinks the future of AR is headed. We also discuss one-way and two-way AR. Commercial: Screen Door Labs We begin the second half of the episode talking about Google Glass and Magic Leap. Kari then discusses her point of view on AR and privacy. Will AR add fashion to utility? What is the future for AR in B2B and B2C markets? We then talk about the startup environment in which Screen Door Labs is growing, including accelerator programs.
From online forums of the 1980s to social media and beyond Forms of spam Why do people send spam? Statistician Paul Graham Robo calls Spam vs. scams CAN-SPAM Act Commercial: Future Spam Protection Spam in social media, online reviews, etc. Fake followers and bot engagement Is spam in the eye of the receiver? What is spam, really? How can you avoid being spammy? Bonus: Stay crazy. Kaw kaw!
What is Compassion Fatigue? The difference between Compassion Fatigue and Burnout The Green Cross Charles Figley and the Figley Institute Commercial: Robot Patients Caring for aging parents Resilience Survivor vs. victim mentality Post-traumatic growth Experiences that can result in compassion fatigue How to treat compassion fatigue
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