Saturday 29 August 2020

Pre listening information for Real English Conversations 047

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Hi English learners! Lori here, your teacher from better at English dot com. This little update is just to let you know that new Real English Conversations are coming. I know you love the conversations, and I do love making them for you, but they are quite a lot of work, let me tell you! In fact, I just invested in some fancy new recording equipment that’s going to make it much easier for me to record and transcribe the conversations in the future. Because hey, let’s face it, what good is a conversation episode with out a transcript that you can use to learn from?

The first new conversation is coming in the next couple of days, and I’m letting you know in advance because I think you’ll get more benefit from the conversation if you can familiarize yourself with the general topic before you listen.

“Hey Lori, what’s the topic?”

Oh yeah, what’s the topic?

You’ll be hearing me and an American friend talk about AI, or artificial intelligence, and the automation of human labor. Yes, the robots are coming and – whether we like it or not – a lot of the work that humans are doing now, a lot of our jobs, our skills, will be replaced by machines and artificial intelligence. How are we going to deal with that as a society? Where will we find our sense of value and purpose when we don’t have to work anymore? And how will we make a living in the first place? How will we put a roof over our heads and put food on the table? These are some of the things you’ll hear us discuss.

You won’t think I’m so cute when I take your job.

And in the conversation we mention some videos and other things that we’ve seen online. And that’s not so fun for you if you haven’t seen the video yourself and have no idea what we’re talking about. So I’ve put the links to these in the show notes for this episode, and if you check out the background material in advance, you’ll be on the same page with us as you listen to the conversation. You won’t be left in the dark, scratching your head, when you hear us mention the videos. So I highly encourage you to take the next couple of days and get familiar with some of these materials so you’ll get more out of the conversation when I post it next time.

That’s all for this time…I’ll see you soon with a brand new, fresh, juicy, delightful and delicious real English conversation. Unless I’m replaced by a robot before then. Oh, wait. How do you know I’m not already a robot now…seriously, how would you know? Woo! Scary question.

Anyway, as always, you can find me at if you want to leave a comment, send an email, or leave me a voice message. I love getting voice messages from you so I can hear you show off your beautiful English. You can do all of that from my website. Until next time, here’s wishing you an inspired and productive day. Bye for now.

Funny (but still disturbing) video about AI by a comedian
Dirty Dirty Robots

Facts, figures and big questions about what will happen when machines and AI take over our jobs
Humans need not apply

Article and short video about some predictions related to Artificial Intelligence and automation
This is when robots will start beating humans at every task

For learners of academic English – here is the original study by researchers at Oxford and Yale. This is the study that the people in the videos talk about.
When will AI exceed human performance?

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