John Oliver Hilariously Trolled How Slim Jims Are Made

If you've ever wondered about how artificial intelligence machines really work, behind the screen, you're not alone. British comedian and host of the show "Last Week Tonight" John Oliver recently starred in an episode where he discussed the concept of artificial intelligence along with many of the popular AI machines that have been making waves across the internet like ChatGPT and self-driving cars made possible with AI-enabled software (per Forbes).

While new technological advances involving AI can be exciting in what they can potentially add to society, it's not all smooth sailing when it comes to understanding AI. Oliver highlights one of the main issues in understanding AI in this episode and with it comes to a humorous analogy that the comedian makes involving Slim Jims. Slim Jim lovers are advised to read the following paragraphs with a guarded heart as this joke is one that will be tough to swallow.

How Slim Jims are made according to John Oliver

In a Youtube video of John Oliver's monologue concerning artificial intelligence, he gracefully compares the "black box" problem that arises with some uninterpretable AI machines with a Slim Jim factory. In the video, Oliver quotes an article on explainable AI from IBM stating, "not even the engineers or data scientists who create the algorithm can understand or explain what exactly is happening inside them or how the AI algorithm arrived at a specific result." He then provides a cheeky example to illustrate the issue in arguing that we know both the input and the output when it comes to how Slim Jims are made.

According to Oliver, what comes out of a Slim Jim factory are "red and angry meat sticks" and what goes in are "barnyard anuses and hot glue", but we can't be so sure about what happens in between, he argues. This is purely a joke as we know what's really in a Slim Jim. Oliver is right about them not being made of the highest quality meat (looking at you, "mechanically separated chicken"), but we can rest easy knowing they're not purely made of anuses and glue, as the "Last Week Tonight" on-screen image illustrates.