MOD.Cast: Meet Ava

Posted 10 Feb

MOD. at UniSA
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In this episode, we meet Ava. Ava has been genetically engineered to be super intelligent and is currently in Austronaut school, living in a space station for this last part of their studies. The final test of Austronaut school is based on team work, but Ava doesn’t thrive in this area. Today, Anna Day is taking us on a journey into the future, interviewing experts about what the future of space industries really look like.

Andy Koronios, CEO and managing director of SmartSat, a leading space industry collaboration explains that technology is changing exponentially and by the time Ava is in Austronaut school, this industry will look very different. But for the time being, we can already see the way that space industries have changed the world we live in.

“Space exploration is hugely beneficial to our society. If it wasn’t for space exploration, you wouldn’t have [your smartphone] … all of that is dependent on satellite communications. Many technologies on Earth have started from the experiments and the tech improvements for space travel…”

As time goes by, it’s increasingly difficult to be able to learn everything about a certain topic, something that was possible even one hundred years ago. As humans, we each individually know a smaller percentage of the knowledge that exists in the world, and this is where collaboration comes in.

Is intelligence the most important trait in the face of this realisation? Dr Hannah Brown, the Chief Storyteller at SAHMRI, isn’t so sure.

“It takes one of everyone to make a village the way it is. So choosing intelligence over anything else, does that make us a smarter or better society? I don’t think so. I work in an environment full of very smart people, but there are lots of things that they aren’t very good at.”

Ava might disagree, but do you? It’s important for us to learn to work together. If you collaborate with other people, you’re able to take advantage of all of your fellow humans’ skills, even if you’re not quite there in one of them. These basic skills of team work are critical to our ongoing success as a


MOD.Cast Season 2 was developed by and stars University of South Australia journalism students Anna Day, Meika Bottrill and Madina Jaffari. It was produced by Radio Adelaide’s Podcast Works program, with special thanks to Sarah Martin and Nikki Marcel, along with Research Marketing Coordinator, Elke Kleinig.

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