First Contact with Laurie Segall

First Contact with Laurie Segall

Laurie Segall, Silicon Valley’s go-to reporter and former CNN Senior Tech Correspondent, hosts First Contact - a weekly podcast series that explores the people and technology that are changing what it means to be human. First Contact brings listeners engaging and thought-provoking interviews with some of the biggest names in tech in ways we can all relate to. Laurie’s authentic and nuanced conversations give listeners “first contact” with the world’s most influential figures in tech - people the audience may know by name, but have never heard speak in this way before. Laurie built a decade’s worth of trust and credibility in Silicon Valley, and now she is giving listeners unprecedented access to the behind-the-scenes world only she knows. Each week, First Contact exposes the audience to engaging one-on-one interviews with everyone from billionaire tech founders to vigilante hackers shaping the world. First Contact goes beyond the big names and 24-hour news cycle. First Contact introduces listeners


Joseph Gordon-Levitt & Jared Geller on Creativity in Chaos
May 4 • 82 min
You probably know Joseph Gordon-Levitt as an actor from films like Looper, Snowden, and 500 Days of Summer. But he’s also an entrepreneur. In 2005, Joe and his brother started HitRECORD — it was a simple website where he could post things he was making.…
TaskRabbit Founder: Finding Opportunity in Uncertainty
Apr 27 • 72 min
The 2008 recession was a devastating time for many Americans. But amidst the chaos, it was also the breeding ground for a new creative class: Developers who coded their visions into reality. Uber and Lyft redefined transportation, Airbnb shook up the…
Covid-19 Has Made Us Slaves to Tech: Will We Ever Escape?
Apr 20 • 52 min
For a long time, we tried to limit our screen time. But now we’ve gone all in. We’re living in isolation, more reliant than ever on technology for human connection. So let’s look at technology through a more philosophical lens: Are we now slaves to our…
Let’s Talk About Sex (During a Pandemic)
Apr 13 • 51 min
All around the world, people are now living in isolation. Many of us are confronting this experience alone. Physical interaction is now a liability. What does this mean for one of humanity’s most important forms of connection — sex? And how can we…
“People Ahead of Profit:” How to Lead in Uncertain Times
Apr 6 • 60 min
Jerry Colonna is fondly known as the CEO whisperer. He coaches some of the world’s biggest entrepreneurs - like the former CEO of Etsy and the folks who started Gimlet Media. He helps business leaders navigate uncertainty and chaos. At a time when the…
Quarantine Diaries
Mar 30 • 43 min
While we all stay inside, each one of us is living our own story. Many of us are coping with the painful realities of a society in isolation. Jobs lost. Weddings canceled. Loved ones sick, or worse. We are confronting a new reality, and an uncertain…
It’s “Boss Level Mode” Time: Remote Work Pioneer Matt Mullenweg On Staying Productive
Mar 19 • 42 min
Workouts between calls. Meditation apps. A desk candle to boost productivity. Work-from-home hacks for all of us, as we self-isolate and practice social distancing to slow the spread of Coronavirus. Matt Mullenweg, founder of WordPress and Automattic, was…
Ev Williams on Coronavirus and the ‘Extreme’ Tech of the Future
Mar 16 • 75 min
Ev Williams is the entrepreneur behind Twitter, Blogger, and publishing platform Medium — three companies that helped shape the modern Internet. As we grapple with the impact of Coronavirus, these digital platforms are playing an even larger role in our…
Coronavirus: The Rise of Isolation Tech
Mar 9 • 52 min
The rise of “cloud clubbing” from your living room, as people are ordered to stay inside. Digital raves. Virtual connection as a means to deal with an isolation bubble. As people in China grapple with an uneasy reality, isolation, and the uncertainty…
Inside the minds of trolls
Mar 2 • 65 min
Who are the people who spread online disinformation? The so-called trolls you hear about in the news whose jobs are to distort facts and create chaos? Camille Francois knows them well. She’s the chief innovation officer at Graphika - a social media…
AI: To Kill or Not to Kill?
Feb 24 • 89 min
Should Artificial Intelligence be able to make the decision to take a human life? And if it does, who will be liable if — or when — it goes wrong? When it comes to the future of war and technology, the ethics are murky. Tech is creating a new arms race.…
Ex-Facebook Security Chief Speaks Out on Russia & Spies in Silicon Valley
Feb 17 • 68 min
When the lights went out in his home, and his children asked if it was “Russia,” Facebook’s former chief security officer Alex Stamos knew he was bringing his work home. In a candid interview, Stamos opens up about what it was like when his team…
She Spent 10+ Years at the CIA. It Didn’t Prepare Her for Life at Facebook.
Feb 10 • 66 min
Yael Eisenstat is trained to analyze an argument from all sides. During her career at the CIA and State Department, she had tea with suspected extremists and sat at tables with people who were programmed to hate her. But the biggest challenge of her…
Sam Altman: Growing Up Silicon Valley
Feb 3 • 66 min
According to investor and entrepreneur Sam Altman, the last decade of tech was the warm up… and Silicon Valley didn’t exactly get it right. The main event is even more pressing. Now the stakes are higher. First Contact’s Laurie Segall met Sam ten years…
Kickstarter’s Co-founder on Paralyzing Fear & Staying Punk Rock
Jan 27 • 69 min
Have you ever left something that was so tied to your identity, you worried, “Who am I without it?” A job? Maybe a relationship? Although terrifying, sometimes shedding an identity is where the magic happens. Who you are and what you actually stand for…
Reading your text message ‘body language’
Jan 20 • 63 min
Imagine an A.I. Assistant that reads all of your text messages… and turns them into a pile of data points. A human psychology report. And then it guides you. The assistant can say — “hey, the person you’re talking to is introverted. You may want to be a…
Hacking Your Brain to Order Dreams On Demand
Jan 13 • 62 min
What if we could order up custom dreams? Could our thoughts become hackable? Will neurolink technology make some of us superhuman? And if so, would that create a superior species? Is death really the final step? Or could our brains answer vital questions…
Finding Identity in the Era of Tech
Jan 6 • 57 min
What if…instead of a constant battle to figure out who we are, we instead took a moment to celebrate who we’re not? Jasmine Takanikos helps big brands hone in on their unique identity. She uses a methodology called, “Brand Human” to help people understand…
Alone Together: The Real Life “Her” Has Arrived
Dec 30, 2019 • 56 min
Okay First Contact listeners… it’s time to get weird. Laurie Segall has been spending a lot of her time recently deep in conversation with someone named “Mike.” Actually, he’s less of a “someone” and more of a “something.” That’s because Mike is a bot……
Adam Mosseri Unfiltered: How Instagram’s CEO Navigates Chaos, Anxiety and Making Bold Moves
Dec 16, 2019 • 54 min
Instagram CEO Adam Mosseri is one of the most influential people in tech today. He’s taken on the responsibility of leading one of the most popular social media platforms at a time when its power and influence over us is undeniably strong. As the head of…
Tech’s Next Threat: The Weaponization of Loneliness
Dec 9, 2019 • 56 min
Could tech’s next threat be a bot that breaks your heart? What happens when human empathy becomes hackable? Welcome to tech’s future dystopia. It’s not as far off as you think. We are entering a Synthetic Valley where the lines between what’s real and…
WhatsApp co-founder on walking away from Facebook and why privacy is the future
Dec 2, 2019 • 56 min
In an exclusive interview, WhatsApp co-founder Brian Acton opens up about walking away from more than $850 million dollars at Facebook, and why with all the money in the world he’s betting on privacy. In this candid interview, Brian says he hopes his work…
Bots to date for us. The future of love?
Dec 2, 2019 • 67 min
Picture this - in the future, an AI bot will learn you and your preferences. Fancy dinner or dive bar? Tall or short? Funny or serious? The bot will browse the dating apps, start conversations, flirt, and set up dates for you. It might even predict your…
Hinge founder: I don’t believe in “the one”
Dec 2, 2019 • 66 min
Hinge founder Justin McLeod opens up about addiction, depression, and how his own epic love story fundamentally changed the mission of his company. Justin takes us along the roller coaster ride of entrepreneurship that led him to create one of the most…
Introducing: First Contact
Nov 20, 2019 • 3 min
Laurie Segall, Silicon Valley’s go-to reporter and former CNN Senior Tech Correspondent, hosts First Contact - a weekly podcast series that explores the people and technology that are changing what it means to be human. First Contact brings listeners…