Converge with Casey Newton

By The Verge

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Description

Converge is a conversational game show from The Verge, hosted by Silicon Valley editor Casey Newton. Each week, one of the Valley's most fascinating entrepreneurs steps into the hot seat to play games that are both funny and revealing. It's a tech podcast that doesn't stick to the script — and goes places you'd never imagine.




Episode Date
Maran Nelson scares us about AI
00:42:26

Clara Labs cofounder and CEO Maran Nelson tells us there is real reason to be worried about AI — and not for the reasons that science fiction has trained us to expect.

Clara’s approach to AI is innocuous to the point of being dull: it makes a virtual assistant that schedules meetings for people. (This week, it added a bunch of integrations designed to position it as a tool to aid in hiring.) But even seemingly simple tasks still routinely trip up AI. “The more difficult situations that we often interact with are, ‘Next Wednesday would be great — unless you can do in-person, in which case we’ll have to bump it a couple of weeks based on your preference. Happy to come to your offices.”

Nelson sketches out her vision for a better kind of AI on Converge.

Jun 20, 2018
Pocket's Nate Weiner saves our content
00:37:39

Pocket founder and CEO Nate Weiner tells us why he sold his company to Mozilla — and how he’s working to build a better version of Facebook’s News Feed into the Firefox browser. By analyzing the articles and videos people save into Pocket, Weiner believes the company can show people the best of the web — in a personalized way — without building an all-knowing, Facebook-style profile of the user.

Jun 13, 2018
Google’s Mark Risher changes our passwords
00:47:50

On this week’s episode of Converge, Google’s Mark Risher tells us why the conventional wisdom about choosing your password is wrong — and about the expanding number of threats faced by platforms like Gmail as they work to protect users from phishing attacks and spammers. Conventional wisdom about choosing longer, more complicated passwords is getting less effective over time. Meanwhile, the people behind phishing attacks are getting much better.

Risher is a director of product management at Google, where he oversees Google’s identity, account security, and counter-abuse teams. A big part of Risher’s job over the years has been to fight unwanted email, and he says the methods used by spammers have evolved significantly over that time. Some attackers are getting much better results than they used to just by doing some research on their clients, he said.

Risher tells us a better approach to picking passwords on Converge, an interview game show where the biggest personalities in tech tell us about their wildest dreams. It’s a show that’s easy to win, but not impossible to lose — because, in the final round, I finally get a chance to play and score a few points of my own.

Jun 06, 2018
Shan-Lyn Ma from Zola gets married to New York
00:38:47

On the second episode of Converge, Zola co-founder and CEO Shan-Lyn Ma comes on to tell us why she’s building her company in New York. Zola runs a popular online wedding registry that couples have saved more than $1 billion worth of merchandise to, and days after I spoke to her, Ma announced a new $100 million round of funding that puts the startup among New York’s tech elite.

But why did she start the company in New York? Ma attended school at Stanford and later worked at Yahoo. But when it came time to start her own company, Ma was set on New York.

Let us know how you like the show! Review the show on Apple Podcasts

May 30, 2018
Sima Sistani from Houseparty throws a Tupperware party for pot
00:41:52

Converge is an interview game show where the biggest personalities in tech come on to tell us about their wildest dreams. It’s a show that’s easy to win, but not impossible to lose — because in the final round, I finally get a chance to play, and score a few points of my own.

On the premiere episode of Converge, Houseparty cofounder and chief operating officer Sima Sistani sits down to tell us about her big idea: Tupperware parties for marijuana — or, as she puts it, Stella & Dot for pot. With weed becoming legal in more states, people are curious about what they might enjoy. If you don’t feel comfortable visiting a dispensary, maybe you’d prefer to bring an expert to your house, along with some samples for you and your friends?

Sistani makes a solid case. She also tells us about her experience building Houseparty, a group video chat app that became so popular with young people that Facebook cloned it into a new app called Bonfire. Along the way, she discusses the challenges of parenting in the age of social media and asks me to choose between Black Panther and Wonder Woman, which is deeply unfair.

Let us know how you like the show! Review the show on Apple Podcasts

May 23, 2018
Introducing Converge with Casey Newton
00:00:45

Get ready for The Verge's new game show that's easy to win, but not impossible to lose. Each week, Casey Newton will sit down with one of Silicon Valley's most interesting players — to play games that are both funny and revealing.

May 15, 2018