What Getting Curious Taught Jonathan Van Ness About … Everything

What Getting Curious Taught Jonathan Van Ness About … Everything

When the Becoming Curious podcast with Jonathan Van Ness appeared in 2015, he asked, "What's the difference between Sunni Muslims and Shia Muslims and why don't they like each other?" With a segment titled in which the then- gay Game of Thrones star spoke to a UCLA professor about a complex, centuries-old dispute. The show was a modest success, but three years later, Van Ness was chosen by Netflix as one of Queer Eye 's new Fab Five, and millions of new fans suddenly fell in love with her.

Van Ness has since written a memoir, a children's book, and a collection of essays; Nominated for several Emmy Awards; spent time lobbying for LGBTQ+ rights in the District of Columbia; pretend to be non-binary and HIV positive; The tour begins with a live performance that combines stand-up and gymnastics; She also launched her own line of hair care products. He turned the podcast into a Netflix show.

However, Van Ness still has time for his Getting Curious podcast, which aired its 300th episode last week. Along the way, topics have ranged from fatphobia to The Great British Bake Off , and Van Ness says she'll cover anything if she's really into it. “I am very happy for us in the states, for how it went and how we got it,” Van Ness said. "I feel like I grew up on the show and learned a lot in life while recording this podcast."

Eager to share the knowledge he has gained, Van Ness has reduced the Curiosity library to nine of his favorite episodes, selecting for WIRED those episodes that he hopes will "inspire more people to their passion".

Van Ness. [Data Journalist] Meredith Broussard's work is very close to my heart. Techno-chauvinism is generally the idea that machines know how to do things better than humans. He cited a group of automatic blinds as an example. It's nice to press the button and get up, but if it's broken, you can't fix it. If you have manual shutters, you can pull them up and down with a rope and everything will work just fine. This would be easy to fix.

An important example he cites is his work on algorithmic biases, such as when police scanners or facial recognition systems fail to identify a gender non-conforming person. Many of these algorithms are a reflection of the people who create them, and often the people who create these algorithms are men. People who create algorithms are no different. It is not recommended to raise such issues on these pages, and objections are generally rejected.

In this way, techno-chauvinism seeps into systems that really affect our daily lives in important ways. For example, if you're in a TSA scanner, you might be kicked out of line because you're listed as male, but you're wearing a long shirt so you can take pictures that no one else can. , because these algorithms do not know the shadows that the human eye could detect

Van Ness. Tina Lachisi is an evolutionary biologist who studies human hair variation and how we got there, such as human hair changes and scalp evolution. Why curly hair is curly, why wavy hair is wavy, why is hair straight... it's all a lie. This is also incorrect. At the hairdresser's, you tell us that if your hair is curly, then it looks more like a bean. Curly hair looks like an oval, while straight hair looks like a perfect circle. But in their lab work, they actually found all kinds of hair in all these sizes.

It's really scary that all this fake hair science was used in a crime scene investigation in the 80s and 90s, it's more subtle.

Jonathan Van Ness living with HIV and his memoirs

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