Monthly Archives: November 2014

Ep. 4 – Like a Monkey Flinging Poo

Will the Net Neutrality/Title II debate end? Not today as we discuss some updates to what the broadcasters are doing to try to prevent information about the rates and deals the content delivery companies pay for that content.

Can you be compelled to unlock your smartphone if you’re using a fingerprint? The State of Virginia (and the Supreme Court) seem to think so. We talk about why the literal letter of the law shouldn’t be used when the spirit of the law should apply.

Did anyone expect or predict that mobile tech would take over general computing so quickly? We look back at our last few shows and realize that mobile and cloud computing is rapidly becoming the norm, and laptops and desktops are on their way out. And what does it mean for the “keepers” of the cloud and the creators of the core hardware that runs all of these magic systems? Are we building up resources to keep designing and innovating new tech going forward?

Chromebooks & Google Apps are all the rage in public education these days. What does it mean for Microsoft that a huge number of people are going to be entering the workforce in the next 5 – 15 years who don’t really have MS Office experience (or care about it)?

We talk about what we love and, big surprise, both Jeff and I pick a gadget yet again.

The Ick Factor Revisited

After discussing the Amazon Echo in episode 2, just yesterday I received a friendly email from Amazon alerting me that I – yes I – had been selected to purchase an Echo for the special, Prime-member-only introductory price of $99.

Me? Me?! I never get picked for anything! Whoo hoo!

But then I started thinking, and that’s seldom a good thing.

What’s the use case? I do honestly have my phone with me almost all the time. If I really needed to ask how tall Mt. Everest is or how many ounces are in a gallon Siri and Google Now are at the ready.

Music? Well, with a living room, family room, office, and kitchen that aren’t open concept that’s a tough sell too. There isn’t a single room I spend enough time in that would make sense to leave the Echo in simply for the purposes of listening to music.

In the product video, they show a family enjoying the benefits of the Echo from all around the house. I think that’s the ideal – having one in every major room to be your always-on virtual assistant and DJ. And while I’m willing to spend $100 on one, I’m not willing to spend $500 on five Echos. Technically it would probably be $900 on five of them because right now you can only pre-purchase a single Echo for $99.

So setting aside the “ick factor” of a device that might or might not be listening to my family’s every word and reporting (even in aggregate) back to Amazon’s HQ, I don’t know that the value is there for me, for now, to buy one.

I want to have a need that it fits, I really do, but I just don’t think it’s quite there yet.

Ep. 3 – Dirty Job

Jacob’s dealing with plumbing problems and is hard at work in the mud and muck right up to the time the mics roll!

We talk about Amazon and Hachette reaching an agreement, which will most likely end up being good for writiers and publishers, but bad for ebook enthusiasts.

Android 5.0 – Lollipop – is here… if you have one of a handful of recent handsets. Has Google hit a home run with Lollipop? What’s to like and what still needs some polish?

The Whitehouse has come out in favor of the FCC regulating broadband, consumer ISPs under Title II rules. What the heck does that mean? Good for the Internet, bad for the Internet? We talk about it and don’t necessarily see eye-to-eye on what the best path forward should be.

Ep. 2 – The Ick Factor

Episode 2 was recorded on November 11th – Veteran’s Day.  We want to thank all of our service men, past and present who sacrificed to serve our country. Thank you for what you do, and what you did.

In this episode we talk about how the new generation perceives computing devices and interacts with them. Are we old-timers doomed to the dustbin as a new generation grows up with touch and voice interfaces, and eschews keyboards and mice and laptops in favor of mobile computing.

We talk about the Amazon Echo – promising technology of the future or just another box to listen to you and feed marketers with gobs of useful information about what say around the Echo?

Finally we tackle home automation. Why is it so hard today and why can’t someone get it right? Rumors are swirling that Apple will push HomeKit hard at CES; can they finally crack the home automation puzzle and successfully bring it to the masses? We sure hope so!

Ep. 1 – Apple, Disney and Coke… Oh My!

Welcome to Episode 1 – our inaugural episode!

Today Jeff and I discuss the size and cost of the new Samsung Note 4, How Apple Pay is a magical experience that has a huge amount of inertia to overcome to gain traction among non-tech people. We talk about some of the amazing technology Disney is using to  track and monitor… er… enhance your experience in their parks, and we both share a couple of things we’re geeking out about right now that you may find just as interesting.