The Land of Youth (Beginner)
Play • 23 min

To celebrate 100 episodes of Easy Stories in English on 1st December, I want to put YOUR voices on the podcast. Record a message and say how Easy Stories in English has helped you to learn English.

I also want to have a special introduction with all of your voices. So make sure to record yourself saying, ‘Welcome to Easy Stories in English, the podcast that will take your English from OK to Good, and from Good to Great.’

Email your recording to Ariel@EasyStoriesInEnglish.com. Make sure it’s less than a minute, so that there’s time for everyone’s recording!

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In Tír na nÓg, the Land of Youth, nobody gets old. Every seven years, the men run to a chair to decide who will be king. The daughter of the new king, Niamh, wants to be queen, but there are no queens in the Land of Youth. So when the druid casts a spell on her and makes her ugly and strong like a pig, she goes to live in the forest in Ireland. There she meets a quick young man called Oisín, and they fall in love...

Today's story is The Land of Youth. Go to EasyStoriesInEnglish.com/Youth for the full transcript. Level: Beginner. Genre: Myths & Legends. New Vocabulary: Land, Youth, Forever, Druid, Son-in-law, Marry, Ugly, Cast a spell, Hunt, Monster, Disguise. Setting: Fairytale. Word Count: 1563. Author: Irish Myths.

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Better at English
Better at English
Lori Linstruth
055 – Could you kick a robot puppy?
Hello my lovely English learners! Lori here, your teacher from BetterAtEnglish.com. I love technology, so we’re talking about robots today, but not in the way you might expect. A lot of conversations about robots have to do with whether or not a robot or machine could ever develop genuine feelings or emotions. But today we’re going to be thinking about our own emotions and feelings toward robots, particularly empathy. Can we feel empathy toward robots? And if so, why? Links to pre-listening background -- to get the most out of this podcast: Short video of someone “torturing” a robot dinosaur (part of a research experiment). Make sure you watch it with sound. What do you feel as you watch this? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wAVtkh0mL20 Kate Darling: Why we have an emotional connection to robots (TED talk) https://www.ted.com/talks/kate_darling_why_we_have_an_emotional_connection_to_robots?language=en Yasmin's profile on italki Full transcript of this episode Allow me to introduce you to Kate Darling. She is a super cool researcher who is looking into this very question. I’m going to play you a little bit from the beginning of her TED talk, where she explains how she got into this line of research. The link to the full presentation is in the show notes. It’s as entertaining as it is interesting and thought provoking, so I can wholeheartedly recommend you check out the whole thing. OK, here comes Kate: Kate Darling: “There was a day, about 10 years ago, when I asked a friend to hold a baby dinosaur robot upside down. It was this toy called a Pleo that I had ordered, and I was really excited about it because I've always loved robots. And this one has really cool technical features. It had motors and touch sensors and it had an infrared camera. And one of the things it had was a tilt sensor, so it knew what direction it was facing. And when you held it upside down, it would start to cry. And I thought this was super cool, so I was showing it off to my friend, and I said, "Oh, hold it up by the tail. See what it does." So we're watching the theatrics of this robot struggle and cry out. And after a few seconds, it starts to bother me a little, and I said, "OK, that's enough now. Let's put him back down." And then I pet the robot to make it stop crying. And that was kind of a weird experience for me. For one thing, I wasn't the most maternal person at the time. Although since then I've become a mother, nine months ago, and I've learned that babies also squirm when you hold them upside down. (Laughter) But my response to this robot was also interesting because I knew exactly how this machine worked, and yet I still felt compelled to be kind to it. And that observation sparked a curiosity that I've spent the past decade pursuing. Why did I comfort this robot? And one of the things I discovered was that my treatment of this machine was more than just an awkward moment in my living room, that in a world where we're increasingly integrating robots into our lives, an instinct like that might actually have consequences, because the first thing that I discovered is that it's not just me.” She’s right, it’s not just her. I found a short video on Youtube that shows somebody being really mean to the same type of robot dinosaur that Kate uses in her research. It’s only one minute long, so if you want to pause the podcast and go watch it, feel free. The link is in the show notes. Anyway, when I watched this video myself I felt really uncomfortable, even though I knew it was just a toy robot. I’m not alone; here are some of the Youtube comments. “Why would you do this!!!! It looks so scared, please stop and let me hug it.” “The last part when he was hitting him to the table I heard it crying; that’s so sad.” “I feel bad for him, although I know it’s just a pile of plastic and metal that can’t even think.” Of course, Youtube comments being what they are,
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The English Made Simple Podcast | English Podcast | English Conversations Made Easy | Work | Study | Travel
The English Made Simple Podcast | English Podcast | English Conversations Made Easy | Work | Study | Travel
#1 Podcast for migrants and non-native English speakers
[267] Welcome to The Year of The Ox - 2021
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