Ep46 Noriko Arai
In this episode of ACM ByteCast, our special guest host Scott Hanselman (of The Hanselminutes Podcast) welcomes Noriko Arai, a professor in the Information and Society Research Division of the National Institute of Informatics in Tokyo, Japan. She is a researcher in mathematical logic and artificial intelligence and is known for her work on a project to develop robots that can pass the entrance examinations for the University of Tokyo. She is also the founder of Researchmap, the largest social network for researchers in Japan. Her research interests span various disciplines, including mathematical logic, artificial intelligence, cognitive science, math education, computer-supported collaborative learning, and the science of science policy (SoSP). She earned a law degree from Hitotsubashi University, a mathematics degree from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, and her doctorate from the Tokyo Institute of Technology.
In the interview, Noriko and Scott discuss the challenge of being a creative in the modern academic environment, where publishing is paramount, and how her multidisciplinary background, which spans law, economics, and mathematics, has been an asset in her scientific research. She also mentions her 2010 book, How Computers Can Take Over Our Jobs, and how that led to her work on the Todai Robot Project. Noriko offers her thoughts on the pros and cons of ChatGPT and similar technologies for society. She also mentions her mentors and heroes who have inspired her and shares some of the challenges faced by female researchers in Japan.