We've started making audio narrations of some of the best posts from the EA Forum.

As of today, you can subscribe to the podcast:

EA Forum (All audio)
Audio narrations from the Effective Altruism Forum, including curated posts and other great writing.

Subscribe:
Apple Podcasts | Google Podcasts | Spotify | RSS

You'll also start to see narrations embedded on the EA Forum post pages themselves. 

If a narration is available, you'll see a blue loudspeaker button:


What can I listen to now?

Some of the winning entries from the EA Criticism and Red Teaming Contest:

Some posts that were recently marked as “curated”:

Cool. But I have a lot of things to listen to. Could I just get the curated posts, or maybe just the summaries? 

Yes. You can subscribe to either of these:

EA Forum (Curated posts)
Audio narrations of curated posts from the Effective Altruism Forum. 

Subscribe:
Apple Podcasts | Google Podcasts (soon) | Spotify | RSS
EA Forum (Summaries)
Weekly summaries of the best EA Forum posts. Written by Zoe Williams (Rethink Priorities) and narrated by Coleman Jackson Snell.

Subscribe:
Apple Podcasts | Google Podcasts | Spotify | RSS

What about AI narrations? I want to listen to everything!

The Nonlinear Library project is currently generating AI narrations of all posts that meet a fairly low karma threshold. 

Within the next few months, we are hoping to collaborate with Nonlinear to develop a system that generates even better AI narrations for most or all EA Forum posts. We see a path to better pronunciation, emphasis, and tone, and also to much better handling of images, graphs and formulae.

Who is working on this?

This project is run by the EA Forum Team, in collaboration with TYPE III AUDIO.

What about the existing “EA Forum Podcast”?

In July 2021, Garrett Baker and David Reinstein started a volunteer project to narrate EA Forum posts. The most recent narration was published in January 2022. Since September they’ve been publishing Zoe and Coleman’s weekly summary episodes.

We are grateful to Garrett and David for their work on this.

We’ve not yet heard what they plan to do next—presumably they’ll release an update to subscribers in due course.

Thoughts, feedback, suggestions?

We'd love to hear from you! Please comment below, or write to team@type3.audio

If you’re already listening to Nonlinear Library AI narrations, we’d be especially interested to hear what you think of them. What would you most like to see improved?

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16 comments, sorted by Click to highlight new comments since: Today at 11:52 AM

Could I record the audio of my own post?

Joe Carlsmith started doing this for some of his own blog posts, and Holden has narrated the posts in his 'Most Important Century' series. Maybe these author-recorded narrations could be incorporated into the EA Forum posts and/or podcast feed?

Good idea, thanks. I’ve shared to the EA Forum Team.

Irena: good question!

Personally I'm keen on the idea of post authors narrating their own writing. But I need to check with the EA Forum Team before I share a proper reply. I've sent them a note, and I'll post back here on Friday if not before.

In the meantime: TYPE III AUDIO has some advice on how to make a great narration: https://blog.type3.audio/how-to-record-a-great-narration/

This is a very nice development. I'm a big fan of Radio Bostrom and am excited to see the same team of narrators record audio version of EA Forum posts.

One suggestion: when narrating linkposts, such as AGI and lock-in, it would be great if you could narrate the webpage/document to which the link points, rather than the post itself.

Thanks for the kind words! 

Thanks also for the suggestion re: narrating the full document, rather than the summary. This does seem like it would be valuable in many cases and feedback like this is likely to push us in that direction :)

 

Co-founder of EA Forum podcast here. I wanted to say that I think this is great. As I've discussed in conversations with some of the OPs:

I just want there to be good audio content, which is why we started that podcast. I'm super happy that someone else is doing it, with professional skills and tools and that there are dedicated resources devoted to it. And it seems to be going very well!

As for the "EA Forum Podcast"

  • I'd be happy to merge all of that content with this new initiative, ideally including the embedings (note, we generally put the 'audio' tag on posts we narrated)

    • acknowledging that our audio and narration quality is general a bit lower; but hopefully still useful - and I sometimes gave comments in my own narrations ...
  • Would be happy to semi-close that podcast and have it point here to avoid clutter and confusion, but Garret may have other ideas

Some suggestions for this podcast ... possibly something we could top-up on "EA Forum Podcast"

  • Comment threads: I'd really like to see at least some of these narrated. Much of the value for many posts is even greater in the threads then in the original post. And of course it's valuable to hear what people think about a post's ideas and credibility, and get these other perspectives.

  • Author narration: I think this is often high value because it gives good insight into the tone and intentions of the writer. Of course this trades off with non-professional narration and not all authors having the audio tools. Still, it seems like something that I'd like to see happen more.

...

Congrats on a great launch. Really enjoying it and getting a lot out of it.

Great to hear, thanks David!

I share your enthusiasm for author narration, but I think it only makes sense when:

(a) the author has a strong natural talent and motivation for narrating

(b) the author's time would not be better spent doing something else

Some people love the idea of narrating their own writing, to the point where I slightly worry that some will fail to realise that (b) is true of them. But this is probably overthinking it.

My general take is: if an author is keen to narrate, we'll briefly assess (a) and (b), and if there's not an obvious issue there, we'll gladly help them make a great narration.

The steps you suggested for the EA Forum Podcast sound good to me. I'll send you an email later today.

Again—thanks for all the work you've put into the "OG" EA Forum Podcast B)

Narrating the top comments for some posts is a good idea. I'll discuss this with the team.

My quick personal take is that we should start experimenting with this immediately. We should also bear in mind that not all posts will have comments that are above the bar for narration.

I actually suggested we narrate a couple of the replies to the Michael Nielsen post, but I lost track of that thread and I can see that this didn't happen. I still think we should do this—I'll discuss with the team.

Happy to see this, nice work!

Nice! Can you provide an update when it's ready on Google Podcasts?

Google Podcast links:

I've added these links to the OP.

Sure, I'll post back.

I submitted a week ago and they're taking ages. It's known that they sometimes take a while but this case seems unusual. Dashboard shows no errors but if it's not there by Friday I will try to find a Googler to speak to...