Raw Data Season 3: Origins of Power in Silicon Valley

Raw Data Season 3 is a 12-part series: Origins of Power in Silicon Valley.

In this series, we explore how Silicon Valley came to play such a huge role in everyday life, and how the Valley today challenges our notions of privacy, autonomy, and freedom. People we interviewed for this series include Leslie Berlin, Steve Blank, Franklin Foer, Kevin Kelly, John Markoff, Alice Marwick, and Fred Turner. Here is a summary and a link to each episode.

Episode 0: Prelude

Introducing the series. Silicon Valley’s power: How did we get here? 
Leslie Berlin, Fred Turner

Episode 1: Monument to a Dead Child

The seeds of Silicon Valley were sown long ago. The Gold Rush, the railroad barons, the founding of Stanford University, and myths of the American West still echo today. 
Richard White, DJ Dull-McKensie, Laura Jones

Episode 2: Valley of Heart's Delight

Before tech, there were orchards in the “Valley of Heart’s Delight.” Federal funding for Cold War research changes everything, and the semiconductor industry brings silicon to the Valley. The Traitorous Eight create Fairchild Semiconductor. And the weather here is “perfect.” 
Daniel Swain, Steve Blank, Margaret O’Mara, Leslie Berlin

Episode 3: Drop City

Inspired by cybernetics and LSD, Stewart Brand creates the Whole Earth Catalog as a how-to manual for the commune movement. The catalog articulates a philosophy of tech idealism and individual empowerment.
Fred Turner, John Markoff, Kevin Kelly

Episode 4: The Looking Glass

The Valley comes of age as the center of innovation and personal computing. Doug Englebart delivers the Mother of All Demos. Steve Jobs makes a fateful visit to Xerox PARC. On The WELL, people learn what it means to socialize online.
Leslie Berlin, John Markoff, Howard Rheingold

Episode 5: The Triple Fence

In the post-Watergate era, two academics battle the NSA and establish the technology that protects our online information. Cryptography remains a fundamental tool, but can it save us from entering a post-privacy world?
Michal Kosinski, Whit Diffie, Marty Hellman, Henry Corrigan-Gibbs

Episode 6: Land of the Free Dotcom

Netscape’s IPO electrifies the dotcom era, and “New Economy” proponents insist that cyberspace will redefine the rules of prosperity. The data economy is born.
Fred Turner, Kevin Kelly, Lou Montulli, Rosanne Siino, Tim Wu

Episode 7: The Garage

Silicon Valley reveres garage start-ups and the myth of the entrepreneur. But in the wake of the dotcom crash, power dynamics shift. Have the entrepreneurs, these quintessential American characters, captured too much power?
Steve Blank, Sarah Lacy

Episode 8: All The World’s A Stage

Within 15 years, social media has become the dominant force shaping the Valley. What does it mean for individuals around the world and for society at large to be publicly performing in so many aspects of our lives?
Andrew Smith, Alice Marwick

Episode 9: Gatekeepers

The tech giants that control the internet have destroyed 20th century institutions and challenged the role of an independent press. Whither the 4th estate?
Susan Athey, Frank Foer

Episode 10:  Democracy

Can democracy survive the internet? What country will take the lead in shaping our online environment – and how?
Nate Persily

Episode 11: Inevitability

Technology is an almost god-like force that acts upon all of humanity. What does it actually want?
Kevin Kelly

Episode 12: Reckoning

Silicon Valley and Washington DC have a showdown when Zuckerberg goes before Congress. Silicon Valley has grown powerful because it advances a vision for how technology will set us free. So what’s missing from the story?
Leslie Berlin and others

Raw Data (Seasons 1-3) was produced and hosted by Michael Osborne and Leslie Chang, with help from Isha Salian, Jackson Roach, and the Worldview Stanford team. The podcast is supported by the Cyber Initiative at Stanford University’s Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies, and by Worldview Stanford.

For more information, please contact Michael Osborne at osbornemc@gmail.com.


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