Monthly Archives: July 2016

Ep. 89 – Gotta catch ’em all!



This week the guys can’t seem to stop talking about Jeff’s newest obsession; Pokemon Go! He even has to take a break before the show starts to catch a “rare” Pikachu.

We’ve got a winner!

Jimmy Gandy is the winner of our Android T-Shirt giveaway. Stay tuned for future contests, ’cause everyone likes free stuff, right?

Quickies

Jacob & Jeff share an iOS 10 beta update.  Both have been rocking it for a while now and find it to be, overall, pretty darn stable. Jeff gives the new notification center setup high marks.

‘Friendly’ GMO mosquitoes have been successfully tested against dengue fever – there are hopes that they might be able to leverage this breakthrough to help combat Zika (which is carried in the same species; the aedes aegypti).

Jacob has a conundrum with his Comcast service – the outside line is kerplunkt.  How to get Comcast to recognize that he doesn’t need to reboot his modem, and a tech needs to come out and replace the coax cable?  Listeners – your thoughts and ideas?

The meat of the show: Mmmmmm…. meat!

Researchers hit record storage density by writing bits with single atoms. A new system has a density of 500 terabits per square inch, but requires being cooled to -333 degrees Fahrenheit and access to a S-T electron microscope.  You know, stuff you probably have handy right on your desk?  The cool thing is that using this storage technique could yield fantastic amounts of data storage in incredibly small amounts of space. How small? A 2D circuit with this technology, the size of a postage stamp could hold data equivalent to all of the books ever written by mankind so far.

Edward Snowden is designing an iPhone case. From the what-the-heck?! Department; this is an on-going collaboration with Andrew “Bunnie” Huang that was detailed during an event at MIT Media Lab. The case is designed to monitor signals sent to the smartphone’s internal antennas to determine whether the device is transmitting data that can put users at risk of detection – particularly people in precarious positions like journalists in embattled areas.  It’s still a prototype design – for now.  Interesting though, since even when your phone is “off” it can still be pinging towers & beaming out information without your knowledge.

Todd gets excited by Pokemon Go – but for the economic and “health” reason, not for the fun of playing the game! Why Pokemon Go is a healthcare and economic breakthrough is an article from Transformation Technologies (http://www.mauldineconomics.com/tech/tech-digest/why-pokemon-go-is-a-healthcare-and-economic-breakthrough) and talks about how video games improve brain function and mental health – and Pokemon Go is getting tons and tons of people out and moving – exercising both their bodies and their minds!

What we love…

Jeff loves the 1993 classic Jurassic Park.  Recently showing at his local “art house” theater, he says it still holds up really well.

Todd loves the Rondo icon pack for Android – free! https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.benx9.cactus&hl=en

Jacob loves “Thing Explainer: Complicated Stuff in Simple Words” by Randall Munroe. It’s about $11 on Amazon for a nice hardcover copy: http://amzn.to/29PHcjg


Ep. 88 – Giant Holograms



 

Ep. 88 - Giant Holograms

This week the guys are back, talking tech & tech news (what else is new?).  Listeners Kye & John write in with some helpful tips on using two-factor authentication via SMS & why you should be wary of that and if you’re running Symantic AV there’s a critical bug that could allow your machine(s) to get infected without you even doing anything.  Keep your apps updated & patch, people!

Samsung’s new memory format

Samsung UFS memory cardsSamsung has created a new flash storage scheme; Universal Flash Storage (UFS) to try to take on the microSD memory market. UFS is expected to introduce significant performance enhancements when compared against its predecessor, microSD.

Set to be available in a variety of sizes, ranging from 32GB all the way up to 256GB, UFS cards are capable of offering more than five times faster sequential read performance. The UFS cards will be able to handle 530MB/s, which is similar to that of a PC SSD. The new cards will also offer a random read rate of 40,000 IOPS, more than 20 times that of microSD. So – yay – another standard to adopt for certain hardware. *cough*Memory Stick*cough*

iOS 10 Public Beta

Jacob bit the bullet and upgraded his iPhone – his daily driver – to the iOS 10 Beta that dropped a few weeks ago.  Generally stable, there is some app whackiness that you’ll get when a new version of iOS drops.  Developers will need to tweak their apps in anticipation of the fall release.

There are some really nice changes coming – the new way Apple is handling notifications and the lock screen is pretty awesome. It’ll take a little getting used to, but once you have adjusted to the new way of interacting with the lock screen widgets and notifications in general, it’s really much nicer.

The photos app updates are a welcome addition; the new Memories feature is downright amazing (if not original, but it definitely has that Apple polish). The iMessages updates are… updated?  We’re sure they’ll appeal to a very specific demographic (teens) more than others.

As far as betas go – this one seems pretty stable.  If you’re willing to put up with some fairly (so far) minor inconveniences it’s worth giving it a go to try the cutting edge of iOS builds!

Watch out for that truck!

Tesla’s Autopilot has had its first deadly crash. A Model S driver using the car’s semi-autonomous Autopilot feature died when the car hit an 18-wheeler, the first known fatality involving technology that remains in beta testing.  Apparently the car’s sensors couldn’t detect the all-white semi trailer against a bright blue sky & the brakes were not automatically applied.

Tesla doesn’t bill this technology as a true autonomous driving system – they advise that drivers stay behind the wheel and alert at all times.  They system has already taken heat from drivers posting videos online of them riding in the back seat, playing games, and more. We can barely trust drivers who are actively driving a vehicle; give them an illusion of autonomous features & they’re gonna’ zone right out.

Life in two dimensions?

Some physicists believe that the universe we live in might be a hologram. The idea is that even though we appear to live in a three-dimensional universe, it might only have two dimensions. It’s called the holographic principle.

The thinking goes like this: Some distant two-dimensional surface contains all the data needed to fully describe our world — and like in a hologram, this data is projected to appear in three dimensions. And, the laws of physics seem to make more sense when written in two dimensions!

Crazy, man…

Breakthroughs in aging

Michael West, known as the father of regenerative medicine, gave a talk last week that historians will remember as the world’s first look at the biotechnology that changed everything forever. At the annual meeting of Mensa, he reported on the progress of regenerative medicine—from the stem cell breakthroughs that he pioneered to his current research.

West’s presentation—despite his calm understated manner—is frankly staggering. It is a roadmap to the development of a biotechnology that can cure the worst diseases and traumas. It can even reverse human aging.

What we love

Todd loves 3 Floyds Brewing Company in Munster Indiana: http://www.3floyds.com/

Jacob loves the book American Gods by Neil Gaiman http://amzn.to/29V2Qmz

Jeff loves the movie The Conjuring 2


Ep. 87 – Home Automation with Dennis Heinle



Ep. 87 - Home Automation with Dennie Heinle

This week the guys bring on fan of the show, fellow geek, and supporter Dennis Heinle to discuss home automation options, how to get started, pitfalls to avoid, and how the home automation space has changed even in the past few years.

Home automation made easy?

If you’ve been curious how to wire up your home, control your lights, manage your door locks, open and close your garage, and get notifications when windows are opened – you’ll want to check this episode out!  The guys were surprised that the prices have fallen a bit even in the last 12 months and getting in is easier now than ever.

With that being said, it’s still going to require a bit of DIY initiative and elbow grease to make everything work well together and place nice.  And there’s still not really a single go-to company that’s making a fully ready-to-go-no-tech-experience-required system that’s fully integrated and family friendly.  Still, it’s a fun hobby to tinker with, and it’s finally getting to the point where you can roll it out in your home without upsetting your family too much!

What we love

Jacob loves his Xikar Xi2 cigar cutter. Cheap, sharp, and comes with a lifetime warranty: http://amzn.to/29qogJf

Todd loves his new Android T-Shirt – and you can win one by shooting an email to feedback@nobettershow.com and let the guys know what you think about the new Android segment! https://cottonbureau.com/products/tasty-treats

Jeff love Pokémon GO and has been playing the heck out of it for the last few days.  Hey, don’t laugh – he’s getting his steps in! http://www.pokemongo.com/en-us/


Ep. 86 – Spleen splitters and whisker biscuits



Episode 86 - Spleen splitters & whisker biscuits

This week the guys get ready to celebrate the country’s independence by talking tech!

The rundown

Stories on deck include:

  • What’s the deal with peanut allergies? Scientists think they *might* be able to create GMO peanuts that won’t trigger suffers’ allergies.  Does this finally mean peanuts for all?
  • Autonomous robot battle platforms – are they going to rise up and kill us all?
  • Researchers hack phone vibration motor to act as a microphone – are you safe from a three-letter agency listening to your every conversation?
  • Google Maps on mobile is *finally* adding support for multiple destinations!
  • The election campaigns are heating up: Jeff talks Hillary’s tech platform backing Apple’s positions on encryption, privacy, innovation, patents, education, and more!
  • We finally have an official name for Android N!
  • Walmart is finally starting to test Walmart Pay in lieu of Apple Pay or Android Pay.
  • The new One Plus 3 smartphone is going to be available without an invitation, and it looks like a pretty darn nice phone!

What we love

Jeff loves his new LED solar rope lights: http://amzn.to/29cuWWt

Jacob loves his Leuchtturm Medium Notebook: http://amzn.to/294TxzZ

Todd loves his MPOW Cheetah Bluetooth headphones: http://amzn.to/29ehJkK