Monthly Archives: July 2015

Ep. 39 – Inverse Phase



This week we talk to Brendan Becker, known by his stage name Inverse Phase, an American video game composer and chiptune musician (using Atari, Commodore, and Nintendo hardware). He also speaks and hosts workshops on video game music, chiptunes, and composing.

Phase came on to talk to us about the process of creating his hardware-perfect music, why so many of the “8-bit remixes” you see online are crappy fakes, and why he’s passionate about doing things the way he does.

His knowledge of classic-era hardware is impressive and even left us with our heads spinning! A true geek in every sense of the word (and we mean that in the BEST possible way!).

He’s composed original game music as well as some damn amazing covers. Jeff and Jacob both particularly love his tribute album to Nine Inch Nails; Pretty Eight Machine (http://inversephase.bandcamp.com/album/pretty-eight-machine-se).

You can find all things Inverse Phase on the Interwebz at http://www.inversephase.com/ – check out his Bandcamp page and give him some love in the form of monetary support.  He’s a cool guy doing cool stuff with cool hardware.


Ep. 38 – Holy Grail Gadgets



Jeff wants to federalize the Internet.  Have we got your attention yet?  This last week the President mentioned in a speech that access to the Internet is no longer a nicety, it’s a necessity – and we agree! If you look at breakdowns by race, you can see that minority households lag far behind in Internet access. There are some Federal program to bring Internet into certain qualifying homes with school-aged children, but should we be doing more?

This last week Jeff had a stalker. Have you checked your social media privacy settings recently? No? Well you should go and do that right now. If you’re not careful, you could be broadcasting your location to the world.  Well, to your social media world at any rate. Jeff turned out to be broadcasting his location through Google Plus despite the fact he didn’t have Google Plus installed on his phone. So go check those settings, people!

What was the greatest piece of failed tech? Debates could rage long and hard on this topic, but we can all agree that at some point we’ve all lusted after some piece of “holy grail” tech that ended up falling on it’s face… hard. Jacob lusted after a BeBox and a NeXT cube. Jeff’s family invested big time into Betamax. So what was your piece of failed holy grail tech?

Freaky-smart science people at IBM have given Watson the ability to read your email and sense your emotional state. Yes, Jeopardy-winning-medical-case-scanning-supercomputer Watson can now read text you’ve written and judge your emotional state. Heck, it can even give you suggestions to make your prose more open, friendly, or agreeable! Is this the beginning of the end for mankind?

Amazon’s Prime Day 2015 was such a smashing success that they’re talking about doing it again. And again. And again. Because we’ve proven that we’re a sucker for anything on a lightening-round-deal! Bigger than last year’s Black Friday, Prime Day brought in an absurd number of sales to Amazon. The guys are breaking down some of the specifics on the show, and it might just blow your mind!

Heck, these show notes are pushing 500+ words and we still have stuff to talk about. All this and more can be yours if the No Better Than Average show is right… in your ears.  Seriously, just go listen to it already!

Let’s face it, you probably aren’t as active as you should be. You should do something about that, like getting an awesome activity tracker like the Misfit Shine. Want one free? No strings attached? No gotchas, gimmicks, or tricks? It’s easy! Just head over to our Facebook page, and leave a comment on the Misfit Shine post. We’ll randomly draw one lucky listener’s name on July 31st to win a Misfit Shine activity tracker, courtesy of Misfit Wearables. https://facebook.com/nobettershow

Want to help support the show? It’s the LAST WEEK to get your limited edition t-shirt at The Imperial Shirt Company (http://ImperialShirtCo.com) or head over to our Patreon page (http://www.patreon.com/nobettershow) and throw us a few shekels.


Ep. 37 – Thomas Keister



This week we talk to an interesting guest: American Marijuana Party’s 2016 national candidate for President of the United States; Thomas Kiester.

Keister is an author, blogger, producer, and political activist currently serving as the Chairman & Presidential candidate of the American Marijuana Party.

A long-time blogger and author, Keister won the Blogitzer at the 2011 Bloggers Choice Awards for Best Overall Writing (previous winners include legendary fantasy author Neil Gaiman), and has authored eight books, including two Kindle bestsellers on marketing.

Taking his occasionally controversial way of putting things to the air, Thomas created and hosted Probably Uncalled For, a live Internet radio talk show, which aired from 2007-14 and won Best Podcast at the 2011 Bloggers Choice Awards.

Professionally, Thomas serves as President & CEO of Free Rein Media, a small publishing & merchandise company headquartered in Jeffersonville, Indiana.

We’ve got a bunch of other interesting items for this week’s show too.

Forget wearables, Doppler Labs is introducing hearables now! They’re getting ready to bring out the Here, two real-time processors that you wear in your ears to shape how the world around you sounds. Sounds pretty far out there to us, but here in a few months you’ll be able to pick up a pair for yourself for about $250.

Microsoft lays off another 7,800 employees (after a round of 18,000 layoffs last year) and takes a huge write down associated with it’s purchase of Nokia. Is this finally the death knell for Nokia phones and possibly Windows Phone OS?

iOS 9 enters public beta this week. If you want to give the bleeding edge on your iDevice a try, you can go sign up at https://beta.apple.com/sp/betaprogram/ – be forewarned though, this is rarely a good idea. Make sure you’re not signing up to beta test with your primary device. Maybe throw it on your iPad or something!

Let’s face it, you probably aren’t as active as you should be. You should do something about that, like getting an awesome activity tracker like the Misfit Shine. Want one free? No strings attached? No gotchas, gimmicks, or tricks? It’s easy! Just head over to our Facebook page, and leave a comment on the Misfit Shine post. We’ll randomly draw one lucky listener’s name on July 31st to win a Misfit Shine activity tracker, courtesy of Misfit Wearables. https://facebook.com/nobettershow

Want to help support the show? Get your limited edition t-shirt at The Imperial Shirt Company (http://ImperialShirtCo.com) or head over to our Patreon page (http://www.patreon.com/nobettershow) and throw us a few shekels.

Links: Check out El Ranchito Imagen Digital’s VFX demo reel of the Game of Thrones battle at Hardhome between the White Walkers and wights vs The Night’s Watch; It makes you realize that almost nothing you see on television is real anymore!  https://vimeo.com/132571771


Ep. 36 – Hey, Shazam!



This week the guys are talking about their Fourth weekends – both busy for different reasons.

Jacob has a run-in with Comcast; proving that they are the worst company in America. How were we – as a people – able to collectively send men to the moon (and return them safely), but in 2015 (the G.D. future mind you) we’re stuck with Comcast as the best choice for home Internet access? It’s just so hard to accept when it could be so, so, so much better!

Amazon is celebrating their TWENTIETH anniversary (holy crap, where did the last 20 years go??!) and hosting what they’re calling Prime Day.  It’s July 15th, 2015 and will feature tons and tons of massively discounted deals to Amazon Prime customers.  Get your credit cards and bank accounts ready, Prime members! Not a Prime customer?  You can signup for a 30-day free trial and still take advantage of the deals on the 15th. Here’s how to get in on the free trial: https://www.amazon.com/gp/help/customer/display.html?nodeId=200444170

You see them everywhere now. Vaping, e-cigaretts, hipsters blowing billowing clouds of sweet-smelling “smoke” (née vapor). How safe is it? You hear a lot that the FDA wants to regulate it just like other tobacco products. Jeff’s kids have vaping friends so he was interested in educating himself (like any good father, really). He investigates and learns a little about e-cigs and vape pens and passes the info along to you. It’s obviously not going away anytime soon, but should we all have our knickers in a bunch over it?

Lastly, the guys give a quickie review of Apple’s new music service. Is it the bee’s knees? Can it unseat Spotify as the king of the streaming mountain? Tune in and see what they think!

Hey, you probably aren’t as active as you should be. You should do something about that, like getting an awesome activity tracker like the Misfit Shine. Want one free? No strings attached? No gotchas, gimmicks, or tricks? It’s easy! Just head over to our Facebook page, and leave a comment on the Misfit Shine post. We’ll randomly draw one lucky listener’s name on July 31st to win a Misfit Shine activity tracker, courtesy of Misfit Wearables. https://facebook.com/nobettershow

Want to help support the show? Get your limited edition t-shirt at The Imperial Shirt Company (http://ImperialShirtCo.com) or head over to our Patreon page (http://www.patreon.com/nobettershow) and throw us a few shekels.