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Robert Elliott Smith: Are algorithms inherently biased? © Getty Images

Robert Elliott Smith: Are algorithms inherently biased?

Published: 10th November, 2019 at 20:14
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Algorithms are everywhere, but are they coded in such a way that makes them racist bigots that are easily manipulated, without us even knowing?

In this week’s podcast, we speak Robert Elliott Smith, an expert in evolutionary algorithms and researcher of artificial intelligence.


His latest book, Rage Inside the Machine: The Prejudice of Algorithms, and How to Stop the Internet Making Bigots of Us All (£20, Bloomsbury), explores how the harmful effects of bigotry, greed, segregation and mass coercion are finding their way into the AI that runs our lives, without us even realising it.

He tells us how powerful algorithms have been manipulated to divide people, why algorithmic bias has a dark history in the field of eugenics, and what we can do to fight back against the insidious influences of social media.

Let us know what you think of the episode with a review or a comment wherever you listen to your podcasts.

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Alexander McNamaraOnline Editor, BBC Science Focus

Alexander is the former Online Editor at BBC Science Focus.


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