Techno Sapiens podcast: Should you feel comfortable uploading self-tracking data?

Should You Feel Comfortable Uploading Your Calorie Count to the Cloud?

Should You Feel Comfortable Uploading Your Calorie Count to the Cloud?

The citizen’s guide to the future.
July 21 2014 2:07 PM

Techno Sapiens: The Quantify This Edition

A Future Tense podcast about whether machines will solve our problems, or make them worse.


Welcome to the second episode of Techno Sapiens, a biweekly series of six podcasts hosted by Future Tense fellows Christine Rosen, senior editor of the New Atlantis: A Journal of Technology & Society, and Marvin Ammori, a First Amendment lawyer who has worked for Google, eBay, and Dropbox, among others. Each podcast will examine how technology—now and in the future—will impact us as a species, and how we relate to each other.

On today’s episode, Christine and Marvin debate the quantified-self movement with the co-founder and CEO of MyFitnessPal, Mike Lee. Do fitness and diet tracking technology help to improve our physical selves, or should we be more hesitant about uploading such personal information to the cloud?

Here are some of the links and references mentioned during this week’s show:

  • Unsurprisingly, mustard contains fewer calories than mayonnaise.
  • There may be lessons for the quantified-self movement in Target’s huge data breach, in which a vast amount of customer credit card numbers were leaked.
  • And of course, OkCupid’s clever slicing and dicing of its user data.

This article is part of Future Tense, a collaboration among Arizona State University, the New America Foundation, and Slate. Future Tense explores the ways emerging technologies affect society, policy, and culture. To read more, visit the Future Tense blog and the Future Tense home page. You can also follow us on Twitter.

Marvin Ammori is an affiliate scholar at Stanford Law School’s Center for Internet Society and a practicing lawyer who advises technology companies.

Christine Rosen is a Future Tense fellow at the New America Foundation and senior editor of the New Atlantis: A Journal of Technology & Society.