The Current

The Current for Feb. 16, 2021

Today on The Current: Quebec astronaut David Saint-Jacques on trading his space suit for scrubs; we look at the implications of AI that can detect your emotions; and journalist Mellissa Fung’s new documentary, Captive, explores the trauma of abduction.
Matt Galloway is the host of CBC Radio's The Current. (CBC)

Episode Transcript

Today on The Current:

Quebec's David Saint-Jacques is familiar with isolation — as an astronaut, he spent seven months on the International Space Station. He's also a doctor. Now, after more than 10 years away from medicine, he's traded his space suit for scrubs and is working in a COVID-19 unit at the McGill University Health Centre in Montreal. Matt Galloway speaks with Saint-Jacques about that transition. 

Plus, researchers in the U.K. are developing a deeper form of artificial intelligence that can determine people's emotional state, which could be used for things like health care. But critics are wary of the ethical implications and warn that emotion detection technology is being used to harmful effect in the real world. Our guests are Yang Hao, professor and dean of research in the faculty of science and engineering at Queen Mary University of London; and Luke Stark, assistant professor in the faculty of information and media studies at the University of Western Ontario. 

And when hundreds of Nigerian school girls were kidnapped by extremist group Boko Haram in 2014, the world was horrified. For Canadian journalist Mellissa Fung, who was abducted in Afghanistan in 2008, their story hit particularly close to home. Her new documentary, Captive, sheds light on what life is like for girls who have escaped from Boko Haram. She joins us to talk about the film.