Marketplace Tech with Ben Brock Johnson

Marketplace Tech with Ben Brock Johnson

From American Public Media

Marketplace Tech®, hosted by Ben Brock Johnson, tackles the business behind the technology that's obsessing us and changing our lives. With the listener in mind, this weekday segment examines everything from video games and robots to consumer protection and space travel. Marketplace Tech is part of the Marketplace® portfolio of public radio programs broadcasting nationwide, which additionally includes Marketplace, Marketplace Morning Report®, and Marketplace Weekend®. Listen on-air each weekday or online anytime at From American Public Media. Twitter: @MarketplaceTechMore from Marketplace Tech with Ben Brock Johnson »

Most Recent Episodes

02/24/17: Google vs. Uber in the self-driving car race

There have been a lot of protests going on recently. And at these events, there's a fair amount of time spent sitting, standing, waiting. Ian Bogost, a game critic and professor at Georgia Tech, discusses how a new website called aims to have attendees translate some of that downtime into positive energy. Next, we'll look at Alphabet's decision to sue Uber and Otto for allegedly stealing its intellectual property. And to end today's show, we'll play this week's Silicon Tally with Laura Weidman Powers, the co-founder and CEO of the nonprofit Code 2040.

02/23/17: Funding in outer space

We're look at how public-private partnerships, like the collaboration between NASA and Elon Musk's SpaceX, are changing how America's space program works. Afterwards, we'll talk to analyst Tasha Keeney about how fully autonomous cars may start pulling up into our lives earlier than expected.

02/22/17: What does the future of Uber look like?

A former Uber employee has written a blog post about being the target of sexual harassment and sexism at the company. Jessi Hempel, head of editorial at Backchannel, joined us to discuss how she thinks CEO Travis Kalanick should have handled the issue. Next, we'll discuss some of the products we discovered at Toy Fair 2017, which included a children's 3-D pen that'll let you create sculptures.

02/21/17: The electric-car economy

A Volkswagen subsidiary will invest about $2 billion in electric cars over the next decade, as part of VW's settlement in the emissions cheating case. We'll look at the challenges that an electric-car ecosystem faces. Next, attorney Jenny Afia will join us to talk about her role in rewriting apps' privacy policy for the British government.

02/20/17: Not exactly IKEA furniture

While many might be thinking about the next big thing in software, one Brooklyn facility is focused on hardware. We'll talk about the history and future of New Lab, a building that has several companies sharing its space to build new products. Joining us on today's show: David Belt, its cofounder; Sean Petterson, the cofounder of Strong Arm, which makes exoskeletons for industrial workers; and Jessica Banks from Rock Paper Robot, a kinetic furniture company (think levitating tables).

02/17/17: Shocking the brain for a better performance

One of the latest innovations to give athletes an edge? Neuropriming, the practice of putting electrodes on your head to shock your brain so that you can get a boost in mental abilities. Proday's Sarah Kunst stopped by to discuss how powerful the priming is and whether it could become mainstream one day. Next, we'll look at Facebook's recent decision to jump into the job recruiting game, and then play this week's "Silicon Tally" with Cadie Thompson, senior transportation editor for Business Insider.

02/16/17: Russia's tech world

We're looking at why chipmaker Intel is dropping its financial support for the International Science and Engineering Fair; the use of tech in Russia over the years; and a new website that allows people to anonymously reach out to reporters about Trump.

02/15/17: The return of unlimited data

Some carriers, like Verizon, are starting to bring back unlimited data plans. Why the return, and why did they go away in the first place? CNET's Lindsey Turrentine breaks it down for us. Afterwards, Business Insider's Kif Leswing explains the turmoil happening at Magic Leap — an augmented reality company that's been promising wearable tech that can project images onto the real world. Finally, we'll look at the most popular (and possibly surprising) city on Tinder during Valentine's Day last year. Any guesses?

02/14/17: Celebrating Hackentine's Day

The House recently passed legislation that would update the Stored Communications Act, a measure that dictates how law enforcement can gain access to electronic communications stored remotely. Northeastern professor Andrea Matwyshyn joins us to explain some of the problems with the law. Next, we'll look at the intersection of fashion and tech with a new customized dress from Google and H&M based on your personal data. And finally, we'll talk about one nonprofit's event to help women who want to learn more about coding: Hackentine's Day.

02/13/17: Ford's plan to launch an autonomous vehicle by 2021

Ford is investing $1 billion in the startup Argo AI so that it can get an autonomous vehicle on the road by 2021. Ford CEO Mark Fields joined us to talk about why they're making the investment, instead of just working with what they have in-house. Afterwards, we'll look at what Samsung will have to do to gain back consumer trust following its fire-catching battery controversy.

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