This Week in Tech 568
Leo Laporte: It's time for TWiT, This Week in Tech! What an amazing show ahead for you! Jason Calacanis joins me, along with Iain Thomson. Of course, because Iain is here, we're going to have to start by talking a little bit about Brexit, and what it means to the Tech community and the community at large. i have a feeling we're going to get pretty heavy on this TWiT. Stay tuned! Apple drops the headphone port. Is that a big deal? It may be so. It may be the end of Apple according to some, and we'll talk about solar city and Elon Musk and his plan to make the next trillion dollar company. It's all coming up next, on TWiT.
NETCASTS YOU LOVE FROM PEOPLE YOU TRUST, THIS IS TWIT! Bandwidth for This Week in Tech is provided by CacheFly at cachefly.com.
Leo: This is TWiT, This Week in Tech, episode 568, recorded Sunday, June 26, 2016.
A Dongle for Your Dongle
This Week in Tech is brought to you by SquareSpace. SquareSpace is the easiest way to create a beautiful website, blog, or online store for you and your ideas. Go tosquarespace.com, enter the offer code TWIT at checkout to get 10% off.
And by Trunk Club. Get clothes that fit and look amazing without ever stepping into a store again. Trunk Club will help you create the wardrobe you've always dreamed of with your own personal stylist. Go to trunkclub.com/twit and join Trunk Club today.
And by Audible.com. Sign up for the platinum plan and get two free books. Go to audible.com/twit2, and follow Audible on Twitter, user ID audible_com.
And by Automatic: The connective car company that improves your driving and integrates your car into your digital life. For more information, visit Automatic.com/TWiT and enter the code TWiT to get 20% off your purchase and free shipping.
It's time for TWiT, This Week in Tech, the show where we cover the great tech news of the week with smart, intelligent, tech journalists, or sometimes people who are in the middle of it, like Mr. Jason Calacanis, who lives Tech, breathes tech, is an angel investor. Is that... should I call you an angel investor? Early stage investor.
Jason Calacanis: I started my career as a journalist. Now I do angel investing, but I still run companies too. I have three hats I wear.
Leo: Once a journalist, always a journalist. You always have that bent, looking at things in a unique way, right?
Jason: Asking questions and having that BS meter is... it's in your head. When you're talking to people, trying to form the next question, which is why so many journalists wind up becoming investors, because it's really about asking questions, listening, being present, and coming up with a follow up question.
Leo: Of course steel flow.
Jason: Steel flow is good, so if you're MG Seegle or Om Malik, they know everybody from being a journalist. It's a great way to cut your teeth, and then you leverage that into a career.
Leo: Meanwhile, Iain and I will sit here in the corner rubbing our socks. Iain Thomson is also here from the Registe.co.uk. Just coincidentally. Iain is Scottish by...
Iain Thomson: Half Scottish. My father's side of the family is Scots.
Leo: Where did you grow up?
Iain: I grew up in Derbyshire in the Pete district, that little village that no one..
Leo: That's in England.
Leo: When you came in you said, "I only got a few hours of sleep on the night of the Brexit vote."
Iain: I started listening at about lunchtime UK time, and yeah, it was 5 AM before it was like, I've got to do an interview in about three hours' time. I need to get some sleep. But it was...
Leo: You couldn't.
Iain: To be honest, my wife learned an awful lot of English swear words she shouldn't have been introduced to at that point. But yeah. It was a very fraught night, the last few days haven't been much better. I'd like to keep it light and cheery, but basically the UK is screwed.
Leo: So there you have it. Look, it's funny from our point of view across the pond, I don't think we really know what to think of it, right? On the one hand, I understand how voters might be afraid of untrammeled immigration. The UK is one of the richest of the EU countries. UK isn't even a country. One of the richest, as a result, it carries the weight of Greece and other countries that are suffering. You're going to get your share of immigrants coming in who are looking for work in one of the richer countries, just as Germany does. I understand the reluctance to keep your borders wide open. I also understand the reluctance to let Brussels decide things that would normally be decided by Parliament.
Iain: Certainly. There are strong arguments. My family is split largely 50/50 in voting remain or leave.
Leo: By the way we should point out, the country, it was only a few percentage points.
Iain: 52 to 48.
Leo: If you look at demographics, it was the over 45 set that voted for exiting the EU.
Iain: Over 50's were overwhelmingly vote leave.
Leo: The young people did not want to leave. Why not?
Iain: Because they want the right to live and work in 29 other countries should they have the desire to. They recognize that Europe has kept the peace for the last 70 years, which is longer than the continent managed for the last 2000.
Leo: By the way, from my point of view, that is one thing from here in the states we might look across the pond and worry about, because one of the things, the source of two world wars now.
Iain: Britain is getting frisky in the sidelines, and the head of NATO could be coming from the US as the best ever president when it comes to running...
Leo: So a united Europe to us, looks better for peace. From the point of view of technology, there's economic benefit to negotiating one treaty with 29 countries, then multiple treaties. Then we'll have to negotiate separately with England of course.
Jason: If you look at the demographics of just Europe as a whole, and it's under a billion people, and it's a very slow growth culture, you have population growth is a fifth of other countries, other continents. So people are getting old. What do people do when they get old? They want to protect what they have.
Leo: It's the same reason Trump is supported. We want to go back to the days when England was England and England wasn't a bunch of curry shops on the corner, and we want to go back...
Iain: On the curry front, I will have to say... you were talking about what immigrants give to this country, before immigrants brought curry and the rest of it to this country, we had scones. Trust me, they're really boring.
Jason: Bangers and mash.
Iain: Yeah, we had bangers and mash, we had fish and chips, we had roast beef and Yorkshire pudding.
Jason: It's going to be a complete disaster in terms of economics, because...
Iain: From pure economics, the biggest winners out of this are Ireland, because if you're an international company that wants to get into the Eurozone, your first choice if you're an English speaking country like the US was to come to the UK. If the UK isn't in the Eurozone any more...
Leo: That includes Ireland.
Iain: Southern Ireland has the very favorable tax systems. This is where they funnel their money...
Leo: This doesn't effect that.
Iain: No, but if you're looking to get along in
Leo: Is Southern Ireland in the EU?
Iain: It is. They are firmly in the EU. In fact, Northern Ireland could be going into the EU. Now they're talking about a referendum to rejoin with Ireland.
Leo: If you're nostalgic about jolly old England, you might be a little nervous about the notion that Scotland is not thrilled about this.
Iain: Scotland is going.
Leo: 60+ percent to 38%. Of course Scotland had recently had an independence vote that failed. Now they're thinking they will have another independence vote and they will apply to be in the EU, which is mind boggling.
Iain: Everything I'm seeing from Scotland voters, if the EU membership is at stake, Scotland independence vote will win. I think it's an enormous mistake for Scotland, but at the same time, they will win.
Leo: But speaking as a tech company I could still go to Ireland, I could still go to perhaps Scotland and I might not want to go to England.
Jason: But just think about data privacy, where are you going to store your data?
Leo: Let me bring this up...
Jason: The reason the EU is so transformative for tech companies was because to look at that region as one region, as opposed to building a terms of service, a product for every region. Now it's going to be we have to build a product and an office in the UK and in the EU and in this country. You're competing against South America and China, United States. It's going to set them back. Of course they might make some better decisions for themselves, we'll see how that turns out, but it is something in the air about not trusting the Government, not trusting politicians.
Leo: There is a much larger story that's being told here too, of a complete distrust of not just the political elites, but the media elites, the intellectual elites. That's pretty clearly happening in the US. I think the Trump movement, and to a certain degree the Bernie Sanders movement are about turning their backs, because as a media elite I guess I'm the one who is suffering here, but turning your back on the...
Iain: I expected the pay to be a lot better.
Jason: I really think this comes down to jobs and the economy. If the rich keep getting richer and people in the middle are looking and they're saying all these rich people are getting so rich... then the middle class is getting ground down. Then the poor don't feel there's a path. There's no path to get to the middle class, and the middle class is stuck. If you look at, one example, college education--it used to be that you had this great path to success, which was city universities and state universities were either free or cheap. Now Bernie Sanders comes out and says let's make college free again. You know what? That's a brilliant idea. It gives people a path to get out of poverty. You know what the elite are "I don't want to get free college" as a member of the elite at this point in my life and being poor previously, let's make college free again. Let's give people a path because if people feel ground down, they don't trust Hillary, they don't trust intellectuals, they don't trust global warming, and they're going to vote for somebody like Trump who can't complete a sentence and changes his plan every other week.
Leo: I'll be honest, I completely understand. I'm not unsympathetic to that. It's a little bit like "Let Rome burn." Glen Greenwald from the Intercept kind of surprised me, and I'm not sure I completely agree with him. He says "Brexit is only the latest proof of the insularity and failure of Western establishment institutions." It's a failure of the political elite, the media elite, the Government elite, to provide an opportunity. It's a reaction to people who feel disenfranchised. I completely understand that. If you're Google, you might not be completely against this. Google has had horrific times with the EU, the right to be forgotten. It doesn't necessarily, the EU is not necessarily a great place for American corporate interests.
Iain: It's not a great place for American corporate interests that want to carry on the way that they do in America.
Leo: But Microsoft has been censured by the EU, Google has been censured.
Iain: But why were they censured? Microsoft was censured because they took action that the Government wasn't prepared to do.
Leo: The EU said your Internet Explorer browser is a monopoly. Just as our department of Justice tried to do. But what they ended up doing is insisting on browser ballot. When you install Windows in Europe, you get which browser do you want to be the default? This was a terrible solution. The cookie... it doesn't serve anybody in any way. The Cookie banner that you see everywhere as you travel around the Internet is directly attributable to Brussels, because of their privacy concerns, misguided privacy concerns about cookies.
Iain: We could argue long and hard...
Leo: But how does it in any way do anything but annoy that banner. You click, "OK" right?
Iain: It depends on the site. I check out their terms and conditions, and then I decide whether or not I'm going to...
Leo: Everybody else just clicks OK and says get rid of that banner. The right to be forgotten is an abomination. It's a misunderstanding by the Internet works. It's an attempt to edit history. You'd think the Germans of all people would know better.
Iain: Now, the Germans are the nice parties of Europe.
Jason: Welcome to another episode of This Week in Going there.
Leo: There's been a... no. We're not going there. I'll get there, don't worry. There's string after string of ill informed, bad decisions against US tech companies coming out of Brussels. I'm not sure I don't disagree.
Jason: When you have to deal with one governing body as opposed to 20 or 30, it does make it for the US a little easier.
Leo: Google still has to go to France and deal with the French courts and Germany and deal with the Germany courts. The EU's decisions do not eliminate the courts in France.
Iain: The provide a crucial buffer zone between allowing companies to do exactly what the hell they want and actually hold them in account in some level.
Leo: There is an anti-corporate sentiment that comes out of Europe. Europe is pro-government, anti-corporate, just as the US is anti-Government, pro corporate.
Iain: You can't say the entirety of the EU is anti-corporate. It doesn't work like that.
Jason: At the end of the day, people get to choose which country they live in. The United States happens to be full capitalist. We shuffled around...
Leo: There's pros and cons--
Jason: People in the United States would like to turn it into Denmark or Norway or get a year off for maternity or people have three years of job severance or two years of job severance. If you do those kind of things, while they seem great on an individual basis, sure we all want to take a year off when we have a baby or we all want to have two years of severance, the problem is people don't create cutting edge companies because they don't want to take the risk of being personally liable for people's salaries and they have to go a little bit slower. That's why the United States comes up with all these great companies, and Europe comes up with very few to none.
Iain: But the corollary of that, is that in the US you have no safety net whatsoever. So if you actually want to go and start your own company, you've got to abandon the choices of health care because that's something you have to pay through the nose for, you're weighed down with student debts, which to my mind is quite frankly economic...
Leo: I think we agree on that.
Jason: Yeah, listen. There are going to be some ramifications.
Leo: We're also rugged individualists. I think that this is... It's in the DNA. Admittedly, we're not. I'm not a rugged individualist.
Iain: Well, you started the station.
Leo: I can't chop wood. I do think that there is in the DNA of this country this sense of independence and self-determinism that says, "we don't want a safety net, because that is some sort of nanny Government. We want the opportunity to succeed or fail on our own rights." But I agree with you, Jason, we failed at that as well because opportunity doesn't exist and income inequality is growing and that is why you're seeing a rebellion. It's clear there are some real failures here.
Jason: And adding to all of this is the fact that while we are arguing about the particulars of socialism versus full capitalism versus everything in between, there is a bigger trend that's occurring which is artificial intelligence, robotics, could lead to the end of employment, could lead to a massive deprecation of jobs, and if that happens, this weird behavior thing, like Brexit or Donald Trump phenomenon, this could be the tip of the ice burg. Operation Wall Street I believe was the dry run. It was this little peak into what discord could look like and if you look at what could happen in Spain and Greece with full scale riots, this could become our life. We could be sitting here ten years from now doing an episode and...
Leo: Last month, fox con laid off.. replaced, they said we didn't lay off these 60,000 workers, but they replaced 60,000 workers with robots. I'm pretty sure that 60,000 people didn't get other jobs. This is the beginning of a complete transformation. I agree with you.
Iain: The advance AI robots machine learning is going to bring around, in terms of in the job front, something that's going to make the 30's great depression look like a cake walk.
Leo: But if you ask Mark Andreeson, by the way, I don't think Mark knows what he's talking about, but if you ask Mark Andreeson his position is what's going to happen is the cost of goods is going to drop so low that it's effectively free, so you don't need a job. Is that credible in any sense?
Jason: Star Trek envisioned this. It's going to be a life of leisure and people are going to find their pursuits. That's a utopian vision that could happen, free electricity, free food, free clean water and even free housing is possible in our lifetime. We could provide that for everybody and we're on the way to that when you think about welfare or food stamps or solar, so there is this beautiful utopian society, but it's going to take a complete re-calibration of what our expectation is in the United States. We're going to expect that this minimum viable income, a universal income, which is a lot of tests going on around that, maybe that becomes a possibility. We're going to need transportation out to the suburbs and out to the farms. The second half of our lifetimes are going to be quite interesting, and it's going to require a level of leadership that we don't see today.
Leo: that's the problem. I can see that, but getting from here to there is a massive disruption and seems like it will not be a peaceful transition.
Iain: Oh god no. There's going to be blood on the streets.
Leo: That scares me a little bit when you say that.
Iain: It scares me too.
Leo: Is it too late? Is there anything we can do?
Jason: It's not too late. There's definitely going to be a lot of... I'm an optimist about it. I think that there's so much wealth and prosperity in the world and it's just not equally distributed yet, but if you think about something, people can buy a pair of jeans and... if you think about what it costs to buy a pair of jeans from when I was a kid in 1985, when I was 15 years old, it was 25 bucks to buy a pair of jeans. If you go to old Navy or Walmart it's ten bucks to buy a pair of jeans.
Leo: Because it's made by Chinese slaves.
Jason: Slaves, or they would consider it that they're becoming part of the middle class, they're off a farm, they have running water, they have hot water.
Leo: Until they figure out how to make jeans with robots.
Jason: So this is where we have to decide as a society how we're going to distribute wealth and we're going to have to close up certain loopholes. The fact that we have a capital gains tax. We don't let individuals own stock in private companies, right? You have to be accredited investors.
Leo: Doesn't the jobs act change that?
Jason: It's starting to.
Leo: You think that's a good thing.
Jason: Of course, because 97 percent of the people in the country cannot invest in private companies, they can invest in things that can..
Leo: You have to have certain income standards and the theory is you have to be an informed investor. It's too easy to take advantage of people.
Jason: That's where the opportunity is. They can't... the people who are on the top are only paying capitol gains tax. So they pay this very diminished amount of tax as opposed to income tax. We just have to get rid of the capital gains tax, we're going to have to tax people a little bit more. You're going to have to wipe out the income tax, you're gong to have to provide people with free housing if they need it or free food.
Leo: This is so utopian.
Iain: It's happening in Utah at the moment. In Utah they don't have a homeless problem because they give homeless people houses and mentor them into finding a job.
Jason: Taking care of a homeless person is roughly 30 to 90,000 dollars a year because of emergency room visits and all the other things we have. Food stamps,medicare, whatever.
Leo: You're talking about a progressive agenda that this country will never embrace.
Jason: It's the antithesis of...
Iain: This country has already embraced it. What do you think medicare and medicaid are? These are socialist programs.
Jason: This is why it's a 52/48 vote. We're on this tipping point where half the country feels they're left behind and half the country feels we got to keep it the way it is, and there's no clear path. That's why I registered mayorjason.com.
Leo: You're going to run for Mayor of San Francisco, aren't you?
Jason: I'm just thinking..
Leo: There's been this rumor that's floating around. By the way, having a reality show as we know is a great boost.
Jason: I think one of the great failings right now of the technology Industry is that people like Sheryl Sandburg and Mike Bloomberg
Leo: The so-called smart people.
Jason: They're clearly extremely successful. I know, the individuals I'm mentioning are all brilliant, I've had conversations with each of them. These are all brilliant people.
Leo: They care.
Jason: They have to step up and take office. You know what? When you're on the back nine and you're fifty, sixty, seventy years old, we have to get these intelligent people to start getting involved in politics. The solutions that we face are not solutions that can be solved by career politicians. That's why people hate Hillary. They think this person is bought and paid for. We can't trust them. We're going to have to have a different cohort coming into public service.
Leo: On the other hand, I want to point out Jerry Brown, who is quietly behind the scenes running California as a career politician I might add, better than anybody has in decades. This is a tough state, because it's a weak governorship, we have a crap legislature, and he's managed to do some things. We're dying in a drought here. He's managed to force some things through that actually made a difference. Maybe a career politician isn't a bad thing, maybe it's the right career politician. If somebody says I want to devote my life to civil service, I think that's clear that Jerry Brown is an example of that, he has not enriched himself in any way by being a civil servant.
Jason: You can't paint them with one brush, obviously. We do feel that, and people overwhelmingly feel that the system is rigged. For the rich and the capitalist and for politicians. The fact that those two groups are so in cahoots, these entrepreneurs and capitalists are paying off the presidential candidates and the representatives, it's even more reason for the burn it down party, it's going to get bigger and bigger. Maybe Trump becoming president and breaking it is part of an overall process that will lead to inspiring the Bloombergs that should have run this time, and I think Mike Bloomberg made a horrible mistake in not running this time, I think he was electable, and I think if you look at how horrible this has all turned out for our country, how terrible the dialogue is, if Mike Bloomberg was out there, he becomes the obvious vote. The most qualified person.
Iain: this is what really worries me about the Brexit vote, is that even the leave campaign didn't think they were going to win. The head of the leave campaign, one of the heads...
Leo: They thought it was a protest vote and not an actual vote.
Iain: He went on TV and when the vote closed said, "We may have lost this one, but we will come back later on," and as the night went on and he realized how close he was getting, he changed and it was like, Yeah, we'll get them now. I agree with you, Jason, something has got to change. But the caliber of the people who are now taking this over are going to...
Leo: Horace Johnson may be the next prime minister of England.
Iain: Don't even get me started on that.
Jason: They're opportunists.
Iain: He decided literally at the last minute what is good for me?
Leo: What is good for me and my career and not what is good for the...
Jason: It's arguable that Trump's entire campaign is a trolling campaign to build his publicity. A lot of people felt he ran to sell more condos.
Leo: What's surprised him is his success and I think he's a little challenged by the notion that he could win.
Jason: I don't think he wants that job.
Leo: It's a big pay cut for one thing. No kidding.
Iain: At the same time he's going up against Hillary who is the ultimate establishment candidate. One thing Brexit has shown us, establishment candidates who are relying on it couldn't possibly happen, they couldn't possibly vote for that person. They will. I'll say here on this show, I honestly think Donald Trump will be the next president of the US.
Leo: Can you mark that? Keep that clip.
Jason: It's 3 to one right now.
Leo: He'll win?
Leo: If you look at the polls, it's 3 to 1 against.
Iain: Sure, but if you have another major terrorist attack in this country two months before the election, he's in there with a bullet, quite literally.
Leo: I think the thing that is really interesting to me is that this is clearly a beginning of a revolt against the, not just the political class, but elites in journalism as well. In the media, in political Government. I don't think it's an unjustified revolt. I hate to say it. What's sad is there are opportunists who will say let me ride that wave to personal power, like Horace Johnson.
Iain: He would much rather reign in hell than serve in heaven. It's as simple as that. This is all about him.
Jason: A man without hope is a man without fear. You know what? There's a lot of people who have no hope right now.
Iain: In both our countries and it's a really difficult situation.
Jason: that's a Daredevil quote, for those of you playing along at home.
Leo: Thanks for getting the Daredevil quote in there. We're going to take a break. Some people are saying this is political, not technology, but I think it effects...
Jason: The technology revolution is what's driving this. The lack of jobs and automation and efficiency and AI. These things are dovetailing.
Leo: 20 years ago Jeremy Riffkin wrote a book called The End of Work that foretold this. It's been obvious. We've known this has been coming for decades and we haven't known quite what to do about it. Like a lot of technology revolutions, it's exponential.
Iain: Arthur C Clark predicted this. He said after the collapse of Communism, 30 years later you have the collapse of capitalism. You've got a mismatch between the two, which worked for a majority of the people in the world, he was wrong about a lot of his predictions, but he was write about some of them.
Leo: I'm thinking I want to move to Scotland. That's pretty safe.
Iain: It's good. As a half Scot, I love the country. You might have problems there as a Californian because the winters are brutal.
Leo: My Mom's maiden name is Dunlap. My middle name is Gordon. We are Scots, going back. Brutal Winters just make you stronger.
Iain: You say We are Scots. There's a lovely shop you should visit in Edinburgh. It's the official Edinburgh kilt shop. They have a database. It's hilarious going in there. What's your name? Ah. The Van Dweesenburgs from Ohio. Oh yes, you're a Campbell clan person.
Leo: I've got me own sporin.
Iain: Me too. The Badger handbag. Which makes using a laptop on the train really awkward. You have to have your legs apart to get the Sporin down, if you get your legs apart when you're wearing a kilt, then you're possibly...
Leo: do not wear a sporin on the train.
Iain: Absolutely not, and certainly don't spread your legs when wearing a kilt.
Leo: Where are you moving, out of curiosity?
Jason: I'll tell you where everybody thinks the safest place to be...
Leo: Where is Larry Page's island?
Jason: I can't say. I know exactly where it is.
Leo: You could tell us a little insight into this. If I wanted these mega rich are you not making plans for this?
Jason: They all have plans. New Zealand is the place. There's a lot of people, New Zealand is self-sustained. I know a lot of people who have got ranchesthere, they've been to them twice. You can fly there, nobody else can get there, it's rich in natural resources, and that's the power she plays.
Iain: I've heard this as well.
Leo: Does Larry Page have a go bag at the door waiting?
Jason: I do think that a lot of affluent people do believe that there's a ten or twenty percent chance that things could go very badly.
Leo: The storming of the Bastille might be just a few years away and you don't want to be the guy on the guillotine with your head in a basket.
Jason: We saw a little peak at it when operation Wall Street went to Mike Bloomberg's townhouse in Manhattan, and they all went outside and they protested, and that was when you really said hey, if you squeeze the middle class too much, and people don't have hope, and society becomes not equitable and people feel they are out of control, there is a burn it down moment. It's just unfair the way we have structured society right now. We have to think through how people are going to...
Leo: This is the problem. We might all have hearts of gold and want to do something about this, but there doesn't seem to be much agreement on what to do and how to do it.
Jason: Universal basic income is going to...
Leo: Very controversial.
Jason: Very controversial, but I think it's going to become less controversial, because if you take the sum total of all the social programs we do, and you say you know what, we're just going to give everybody a thousand dollars, it's going to wind up being cheaper, and it's going to wind up feeling more equitable. There's going to be a tinge of it's anti-American to just give people a check every month...
Leo: It's socialist.
Jason: It'll feel socialist...
Iain: Oh please. I'm sorry, ask you're oil Industry about socialism. They get 80 billion a year in Government subsidies. GE hasn't paid a tax bill this year, in fact they got a tax credit!
Leo: And what about Anonymous? Anonymous who was very active in Occupy Wall Street has the skillz, and I spell that with a zed, to dox everybody. Your head and my head, and probably not Iain's head will roll. Frankly, one of the reasons I want to bring this up, not only because Iain was here, but I think it's time that the tech Industry and we as journalists face this head on. We've been kind of looking askance at this.
Jason: I'll give you a perfect example. If you look at Zuckerberg, he's been fighting, his corporate mission is to connect the world, an connected world is better. Then they have this little issue about the thumb on the scale with a trending news topics, fine. It's probably some rogue people who don't want to link to brightbartor drudge or wherever. Then he starts cow-towing to the far right, bringing them in, and not addressing any of the issues that Trump brings up. I don't think you have to be political to say, "I'm going to look at a policy that Trump has or a policy that Hillary has and address those" I think it's cowardice on Zuckerberg's part. If you make 50 billion dollars and then you're silenced by presidential candidates, what's the point of having 50 billion dollars? You should come out and say, "Listen. Trump's ideas around immigration are insane."
Leo: Apple has done this.
Jason: Where's everybody else? Where's Larry Page? Where's Mark Zuckerberg?
Leo: Google is putting big bucks into the Republican convention. So is Facebook.
Jason: I understand, you don't have to...
Leo: I think this is what I was saying.. a reluctance to look head on at what might be happening and to say we have to take a leadership role at this point. It's still living in hope. You know what, Hillary will get elected, things back to normal, the elite will be in charge. Everything will be fine.
Jason: It can't be silent on something as insane as we're going to pull ten million people out of their homes and drag them across the border. We'll just get there. There's only one corollary to this.
Leo: You brought us there!
Jason: I'm going to bring us there before the first commercial break. You have to address people's ideas. There's nothing wrong with addressing ideas. You don't have to be political. I'm not going to tell you who I'm voting for. I can tell you this one particular idea of building walls and being an isolationist... horrible idea.
Leo: Mark said build bridges not walls.
Jason: And then he totally folded and totally hid, and now he won't bring it up. It's cowardice, and I think Mark Zuckerberg needs to step up, because he has a platform that has 1.4 billion people on it, he needs to let people know. This is the antithesis of my vision for the world.
Iain: Bravo saying it. The problem with Brexit is the problem with Trump. Far too many journalists aren't willing to maybe sacrifice access for asking tough questions like, "Are you serious?"
Leo: Mark is not a business man. Mark is a business man. Business is fundamentally a-moral, not immoral, amoral. It doesn't take stands. His job, his responsibility to the stake holders is to maximize profits. period.
Jason: He's a human being. He represents a platform that lets over a billion people on the planet communicate, and he's already put out there that he wants the world to be more connected, to be more just and more fair, and he created a foundation to do that. You can't take this incredible high road and say you're going to make the world a better place and then when you have somebody who is proposing something that is going to make the world horrible, then fold your opinion. I don't think you can do that as an individual. I think it's cowardice, and I think somebody needs to sit there and say stop thinking about your shareholders for a second here. Just think about how insane these ideas are. There are some insane ideas out there, they need to be addressed, listen. Whatever you think of Trump is fine, whatever you think of Hillary is fine. Bernie. Just address the ideas. Free college for everybody? That's not a crazy idea. Building a huge border and being an isolationist with China and moving ten million people across the border, those are crazy ideas. Those are horribly bad ideas.
Iain: I agree totally. The consequences are severe. We've seen in the last couple of days in the UK since this vote came through a massive spike of anti-immigrant violence. The Polish... One of the Polish committees was vandalized inside their headquarters.
Leo: Didn't the leave campaign really play on that? A lot of pictures of floods of immigrants coming into the country?
Iain: There was a very interesting case where they had a leave campaign poster and they put it, they were breaking Goldman's law on this one, but they used, it was a campaign of lines of refugees coming into Slovakia in 1991 after the wall fell. That was, somebody then found an old Nazi advert about Jews coming into... it was the same picture. Lines of people coming in. They're here for your jobs...
Leo: It's easy for us, isolated as we are from the refugee crisis.... how many refugees did we let in?
Iain: Very few. We created a few million.
Jason: It's a hard country to get to.
Leo: It's easy for us. We're sitting across the ocean saying that's a... I'm not completely unsympathetic to this notion of Syrians and others flooding England, especially with the fears of terrorism, I'm not saying I want to demonize them...
Iain: So few compared to Germany, compared to...
Leo: I understand, and it's working fine. Or is it?
Iain: One of the reasons Germany wanted these people to come in the first place is because it has a massively aging population. We have exactly the same problem in the UK.
Leo: It's a source of innovation, is it not? We have a source of brains.
Jason: If you look at all the great startup companies in the United States, it's typically, it's a joke in the venture Industry, is you want somebody who is the son of immigrant parents. Or daughter. Because they're going to understand hardship, they're going to care, they're going to work harder.
Leo: In the words of Hamilton, immigrants. We get the job done. That by the way is a huge applause line in the show. Interesting, isn't it? We talk the talk, do we walk the walk is the question. I suspended all rules of this show. I think it's something we got to look at. One of things, if you see people like Jay Rosen, who I hugely respect. Journalism professor at NYU saying we as the media have to address our complicity in this. We got to talk about it. We're going to take a break. I'm sure there is something in tech to talk about. All right. What is with the headphone jack? I got to ask you. No. Let's take a break. You see, this is easier to fight and disagree over small things. Big things you go oh god. Small things we can tussle. We can get into it. Hey, I want to thank you for being here. I know this is a challenging half hour for a lot of people. A lot of people shouting at the podcast appliance.
Iain: We're getting a certain amount of... I don't know...
Leo: I think the chatroom has been very interesting. A lot of...
Jason: The reaction on Twitter is pretty good.
Iain: The channel is being very interesting. There are of course a few loons out there, because there always are, but it's a lot of people thinking seriously about this.
Leo: One of the things I always hoped for with TWiT is that we would not be ashamed to be intelligent and we would not try to dumb stuff down in an attempt to get favor with an audience. We trust our audience, and we're willing to branch into areas that are perhaps uncomfortable or difficult, or even that you might disagree with because I think we trust you and your judgment and I don't want to make this the place where we go it's shiny and bright and I want one. These are important issues for everybody.
Jason: Technology is a huge factor.
Leo: I think it's interesting. That part is only going to expand.
Iain: It's a very interesting time for using technology for opening up... It's a good time to use technology for...
Leo: If you're a robot man, this is everything you've been hoping for.
Jason: They're unionizing.
Leo: They don't have to! Our show today brought to you by SquareSpace. You know everybody now gets a voice, and that can make a cacophony, it is ultimately Democratic, and this is the thing I celebrate about the Internet. The first place you should go is have a website. You've got to have a website. It's fine to have your Twitter handle and your Facebook page, but you've got to have a website and this is doubly true if you're a business. A business without a website is like a business without a telephone. This is how... I don't do business with somebody if I can't go to their website and find out more about them. I don't care if you're a tree surgeon, a plumber, a baker, a candle stick maker. You've got to go and make a website. The best place to do it is SquareSpace. You said it yourself, Jason. SquareSpace has completely changed the landscape, because web technology is moving so fast. You don't want to hire an engineer to use some web technology that in a year is going to be completely different. You don't want to hire a designer when styles and fads will change next year. You want to let SquareSpace doit. They've got the best designers, the best engineers, making the best sites. All you have to do is pick a template, customize it so it reflects your personal style and ethos. You've got a great website. It's mobile responsive, so it looks great on any size page. It's got all the SEO handles, so you're going to get great results from Google, it has e-commerce built into each and every template, they've got new templates for people who want to do magazine style stuff. They got the grid style landing pages. The infinite scroll. This is something all of a sudden everybody was doing, and if you were to engineer this, to buy the technology would cost you hundreds of thousands. You go SquareSpace and you got it. You get it free, right now with their free trial. You get related posts at the bottom encouraging visitors to explore more. There's author profile pages. Search is an integrated into the header, so readers can get to where they want on your site fast. That's one example of the many different templates for bands, for restaurants, for journalists, and now that they sell domains, SquareSpace domains, you can get a free custom domain name with an annual purchase, you get access to 24/7 customer support, and instead of those awful landing pages that those other domain name sellers give you, you'll get if you get your top level domain at Squarespace.com a beautiful spam-free parking page, so when you're ready... Brexit. Let's create a Brexit page. When you're ready to start building your page, it's going to be there, but when people come to your site, they're going to see it and say that looks great. The cover page alone, that is how I got started. I made a cover page and said that was easy. Let me make a whole website. Power your business withSquareSpace commerce. The only platform that lets you create, manage, and brand your store in a beautiful way. Accept payments instantly. They recently introduced advanced analytics for commerce, which lets you view how visitors are interacting in real time with your commerce. What you get for checkouts, there's device filters, so you can see who is visiting you and how. It's really impressive. They have this new SquareSpace circle. If you've built three or more activeSquareSpace websites, and I know many of you do this, you can get the SquareSpace circle, which includes membership of advanced guides, organized support, six month trial periods for new projects and more. One million customers now. That's a big deal. They crossed the one million customer threshold. Start your free trial at SquareSpace.com and when you buy, all we ask is that you use the offer code TWiT, you'll get 10% off and be showing your support for This Week in Tech. SquareSpace.com, offer code TWiT for 10%. There is a difference between users and daily active users. I've learned that on Sunday night on Silicon Valley.
Jason: Haven't watched the whole season.
Leo: I won't say anything. Very funny though. Lots of downloads, then they go, "Wait a minute. What's the daily active users?" It's really interesting how Silicon Valley is not only getting it right, but getting it into the mainstream dialogue.
Jason: They sent their researchers to everywhere around the valley. They came to my poker game one time and they asked me a bunch of questions.
Leo: That shows desire to get verisimilitude into the show instead of just making a joke.
Jason: If you haven't seen the Idiocracy.
Leo: Loved it, by the way, prophetic.
Iain: I hadn't seen Office Space until I came to this country, and I watched it like, "This is brilliant."
Jason: Idiocracy is going to become the seminal piece of work.
Leo: Somebody was telling me, thanks to Office Space, the Swingline stapler had a huge market surge.
Jason: I'm sure it's a go-to gift in offices.
Iain: Well I finally understand what those memes are about for a start.
Leo: You can't understand our culture if you haven't seen Office Space. I know you have my stapler.
Jason: Yeah, are you going to give me that TPS report? Yeah.
Leo: Can you hear Milton?
Iain: It is a work of genius.
Jason: I love when he takes the screws to his cube and the whole thing falls down. Oh yeah, I like this much better.
Leo: I've showed the total amount I can show without violating copyright. Let's close that away.
Jason: Thank you SquareSpace. I use it for everything.
Leo: Do you? Are you an investor?
Jason: I'm not an investor. Full disclosure, I wish I was. I use it for all my sites.
Leo: They're not public.
Jason: Not yet.
Leo: So, dan Lyons just read his disrupted, all about Hub Spot. Dan is a cranky fellow. In fact, we're trying to get him on This Week in Google as a regular. I think we will. Kind of an indictment of this whole system of early stage investing, venture capitol, IPO... I think one of the Occupy Wall Street points goes down to this. It's a freaking scam. Hub spot never made any money, they were a multi billion dollar, they were a double unicorn. Raised money in the stock market, stock price went up, they're still around.
Jason: You're saying they never made a profit. They have revenue.
Leo: They have revenue and they have the key metric, which is growing fast. But they're spending more than they're making. When did that not become an important factor?
Jason: When capital markets opened up so much and the opportunity got so big that people like Amazon would say, "You know what? Let's take a decade to defer money."
Leo: Amazon built distribution centers. What it looks like, HubSpot and others, I won't single out HubSpot...
Jason: People are very big fans of their products.
Leo: What they're doing is they spend a lot of money to acquire customers. They basically are buying revenue growth, so that looks like a Pyramid game to me. Ubers never made money. They have revenue, they never profited.
Jason: I've got a little conflict here, because I'm an early investor in Uber, but they're profitable in all their major US cities.
Leo: This is why I don't like the jobs act a little bit. This is a sophisticated field, and it's very easy for people like me, unsophisticated investors to go, "Look at that stock price go up, this has got to be a good investment," and not look at the balance sheet and go "wait a minute. they're buying customers. They're not making money."
Jason: Uber is a revenue printing machine.
Leo: Uber is different.
Jason: That is a revenue printing machine in the same sense that Google and Facebook are. I'm not just saying that...
Leo: If you look at Uber, it's an innovation, they re-invented something, but there are lots of companies that are not innovating. It's a ponzie scheme.
Jason: I don't think people go into it with a Ponzie Scheme effort. That would show they have the intent to get a bunch of money in, not build a real business, and then go to Brazil and run away with the money. What's happened is some people come in and they over spend, and they think optimistically about the lifetime value of customers, so this is where they spend over a hundred dollars to get someone to download an app or ten dollars to download an app, and they think, "If I keep this person for three years and they make ten dollars a year off them, sometime I'll break even." the problem is with the exception of video games on your iPhone and some other catetory people are willing to pay a lot of money, and there's wells in the system, it's very hard to do. The app economy was a perfect example of people who spent a lot to acquire customers. But there are other examples where AOL at one point was spending a lot to acquire customers, but they were also making 30 dollars a month per customer. 25, 30 dollars per customer.
Iain: This is something I wanted to ask you about. I get pictures from startups all the time, and 90 percent of them get filed in a circular filing cabinet because they have no clear business plan, they have no clear path to serious revenue and profit, but somehow they're getting money from people. Is there so much loose money sloshing around?
Leo: This is what Dan said in Disrupted. HubSpot, the first thing they do, they didn't hire an engineer. It used to be that you'd have a product. I got a great product, let's make a business and sell this. HubSpot, the first hires were marketing people and sales people. They didn't even have a product. This is a company build bass-ackwards, they don't have a product. Building a company around a non-existent innovation and saying someday we'll have something.
Jason: It is a product for marketers. I know a lot of people who use it and swear by the product. A lot of marketing companies, they definitely have revenue. To your point, Iain, about how many startups there are, it's so affordable to start a startup now. In the old days, it used to be 3, 4 million dollars to get a market. Now it's 30, 40 thousand dollars to get a product to market. If you're a developer, it costs you nothing to get a product to market. I'm looking for people when I invest who can get their product to market, get some traction, and then I invest. They've just figured out enough. There is a problem with people who have never built anything and people give them money. In a hot market like it was the last couple years, you did have people give a million dollars or a half million dollars to somebody who would build an app based on some designs on a piece of paper.
Leo: So are we in a bubble?
Jason: Sure, there are a lot of bubble like behaviors. Usually what happens in these bubbles is there's a bunch of real stuff that's solid, and there's some things that are not. The good news is when things blow up now, it's not like the .com bubble where you had houses of cards, 3 or 4,000 employees and no way this company is going to make it and 3,000 people are going to be outside with their chairs.
Leo: By the way, it was a great time, 2000 to get a chair. Fabulous time.
Jason: It's not like that right now. You do have what I call zombie companies, where people raise a quarter million dollars, they get 5,000 a month in revenue, 10,000 a month in revenue, it never breaks out but it can't be shut down. The founder is making a salary. You get a lot of that walking dead experience.
Iain: There have been a few big ones. The whole Feros thing was...
Jason: That might be straight up fraud. Right? In that case... I think it could be straight up fraud.
Jason: I base the could be based upon who they responded to crisis. When you have a crisis of that magnitude...
Leo: They circled the wagons.
Jason: They fought it to a level that was deranged in my mind. I've never seen a company attack the journalists and not go with facts, and then they had to re-state every lab result. It's unprecedented. Then Wallgreens backed out and nobody has seen the technology. There's a very easy way to respond to criticism, which is to show people the technology. To vet the technology. In a healthcare space, for those of you who don't know, they were drawing blood, drawing small amounts of blood to do very complicated tests, everybody in the world says, "Not possible."
Leo: This is another example of a product that sounded hugely innovative, would have made a huge difference, had it worked. I don't think it was fraught at the beginning. I think Elizabeth Holmes's founder, who didn't have any expertise in this area, but really wanted, thought this could be done. Hired the best scientists, turns out I think what happened is after much research, much effort...
Jason: They failed.
Leo: It doesn't work. But they were stuck, because they had a unicorn and a lot of investors and a lot of money. They couldn't say... or can't you? Can't you at some point say, "Hey. We were wrong."
Jason: That's the thing that makes me lean towards my gut. If you don't know this, but it feels to me like fraud.
Leo: It's like what Ev Williams did with Odeo. He said, "We could start a podcast company turns out Apple is going to do it. There's no business here. Here's your money back." He gave investors as much as he could back. By the way, it gave him a very good reputation.
Jason: It's the most credible thing you can do. I've had it happen many times. I had a company that got into trouble with a Government agency, we said what you're doing is very innovative, but this Government agency which is a humorless agency said this is not cool. You need to stop. The person came to me and said "they told us we can't do it." I said what's your plan? They said "give the money back." I said sounds great. What's your next idea?
Leo: Not a bad thing to do, especially if you have faith in the founders and their intelligence.
Jason: These guys are dealing with a government agency who is saying, "Hey, what are you going to do?" We're going to fight you to the nail, we're going to attack the journalists, John Kerry went to the Wall Street Journal, say that they're on a jihad against us. Listen, a Pulitzer prize winning journalist from a Pulitzer prize winning organization has their teeth hooked into you, and you're responding with ad hominem attacks? Just look at the data. When they re-stated the data, a doctor came out and said I've sent someone to the emergency room based on these results. The new results you're giving me, I would not have sent that person to an emergency room. This is life and death stuff, you do not mess with this stuff.
Leo: there's a lot of evidence. We don't know what really happened. I'm sure that there is an investigation on going right now. But hiring a board that was not medical experts, but was generals and Henry Kissinger.
Jason: Is he still alive?
Leo: He's apparently never going to die. I believe he's drinking the bloods of children.
Iain: Lizard people.
Leo: Jennifer Lawrence will be playing Elizabeth Holmes in a movie about Therenos. What was the one he did... was it The Big Short?
Jason: He's going to have to explain a complex topic and do it entertainingly, and it's...
Leo: As long as they get somebody in the bathtub with bubbles and...
Jason: that was hilarious.
Leo: That was how they explained... I thought it was a little gratuitous, but I have to admit, I enjoyed it.
Jason: There's an Enron, there's a Bernie Madoff.
Leo: These are great stories for movies, but not so good for little investors. It was all the big VCs.
Jason: Actually, a lot of the big VCs didn't participate. She got a lot of the big VCs, a lot of the ones I know passed because she wouldn't show them the tech.
Leo: They weren't smart enough to say no.
Jason: Yeah, I think it was a lot of private equity people and private funds. One of the things I heard from somebody, this is a second hand story, but somebody that they knew was going for a job there, a highly technical person, they wanted to hire them, they wouldn't show them the tech before they joined. This is getting kind of weird now. Very weird.
Iain: I feel kind of nervous about magic leap for much the same reason.
Jason: That's another one that got billions of dollars, but if you're looking at those billions of dollars, they're coming from much more credible investors.
Leo: But they've been so hesitant to show us how it works, always showing us these mis-leading videos, because the technology isn't there, they're just showing you what it might be.
Iain: They did the whole thing with wide journalists...
Leo: Actually it was with Kevin Kelly, speaking of which, he's going to be our Triangulation host. Kevin Kelly did a long piece on Magic Leap. There was a back and forth on it. I read a medium piece. These are ten questions you didn't ask. How does it work, you showed us a demo, but you didn't show us where those wires went. there's a lot of... I have huge respect for Kevin Kelly and I totally trust him, but he may not have had the technical skills to evaluate what he was seeing. He may have been shown a dog and pony show. I don't know. I'm kicking myself now, because I did not ask him about it on Triangulation. he's going to join us, he has a new book, which is fantastic. I've been talking about it a lot. It's called "The Inevitable." And one of the things Kevin talked about was Machine learning. Just as you said earlier, we are in a revolution now where Machine learning will be applied as a thin veneer to everything and will change everything, much the same way the Internet is being applied to your poster and you're doorbell and your sprinkler system, and it creates a huge Industry and innovative force that's very powerful. Great article by Stephen Levy a few days ago on back channel, which started at Medium, which is kind of interesting. He talks about Machine learning and Google's attempt to create machine learning ninjas. Way down in the article, buried a little bit and not given as much importance as I think it deserves, Google is now using machine learning on 90% of its search results. When they first launched their what was it called? Big Brain. Google Brain. It came out of Google X. When they first launched it, it was being used experimentally with search, which is the bread and butter of Google. According toStephen, and of all people Stephen is the guy who can look at something like this...
Jason: Super credible.
Leo: And get deep into it. I think he got somebody at Google to admit something. 90% of all searches now through Google are going through machine learning. They're going through machine learning.
Jason: They've always looked for human signals. So if you were to go to the number one search result and immediately hit the back key and go to the number two but not come back, they can start to infer maybe you didn't get what you needed from number one, but you did get what you needed from number two. Maybe two should be one, one moved down. There's going to be a lot of moments like that. To the toast for example, if you keep checking The Toast for when it's ready and you stop checking the Toast, I think we know it's ready. It's going to know the next time exactly how you like your toast, and then with sensors it's going to be able to know and visually see is the toast burnt or not? A lot of these ideas that we have where humans are coming and intervening on behalf of the machines to figure things out, it's just going to know. It's going to know when you're getting to this exit, at this time it's going to be slowing. It's going to be backed up. Oh, it's going to know through machine learning that there's a Warrior's game and that there's going to be traffic on this route so we're going to take you on a different route or we're going to change the speed where the right lane is faster than the left lane. Whatever it is! And so it's definitely going to be a level of efficiency that's occurring now because of structured data. Like if data wasn't structured, you can't really do this kind of stuff. So if you remember, 10 years ago we'd be on the show, we're talking on podcasts about structured data, we're going to have big data, things are going to be organized. You can't have a tool like Alexa when you say, "Alexa, play John Mayer on Spotify."
Leo: Oh, God, you just made John Mayer play in hundreds of homes.
Jason: Only if they have Spotify. If they don't have Spotify it's going to fail on that one.
Iain: It's getting close.
Jason: Alexa, set a timer for 7 minutes.
Leo: That's the next commercial break.
Jason: Exactly. But the thing with that is, if you have structured data, then you can start doing this natural language searching, and then machine learning can take over. And so we're on this path, right?
Leo: And we're accelerating.
Jason: It's accelerating.
Leo: It's pretty interesting, Facebook's doing it.
Jason: A thousand recipes on Alexa now or something. A thousand recipes now.
Leo: Yea, yea.
Iain: No I mean it's incredible. We went to see, my wife and I went down to see the Cure the other day. And her Apple Maps was just like, 'Well it's going to be at least 3 hours to get down there.' I did the same thing on Google and it said if you go down that street and that street
Iain: It saved us an hour.
Leo: All the signals that Waze gets are hugely valuable to Google. That's a good example, isn't it?
Jason: And well in Tesla's cars, the number of self-driving cars Google has on the road is like dozens, low dozens. Tesla now has 100,000 cars on the road that are connected.
Leo: How valuable is that?
Jason: And now it's like, oh well they're going to have self-driving because self-driving is really about the edge cases obviously. Like you know, staying in the lane, we've had lanedetection, we've had adaptive cruise control, a lot of this like level of autonomy.
Leo: We drove down I-5 for 8 hours over the weekend, or actually last week and I finally convinced Lisa to use the adaptive cruise control. It's amazing. It stops. It will literally stop if you're in stop and go traffic. It will
Jason: Stationary object? No.
Leo: Well don't run into stationary objects.
Jason: That's a problem. Not enough time to stop.
Leo: Yea, that's right. You do have to keep your eye peeled. And Tesla makes sure you have your hands on the wheel right?
Jason: Every second it shakes or something. But then I saw somebody had put like a vice clamp on their steering wheel to fake it out.
Leo: What? Why would you try to fake out?
Iain: It's Darwinism in action, for goodness sake. If somebody wants to do that, let him. We'll pick him out of the rubble later on.
Leo: Who needs a dead man's switch? It is Darwinism isn't it?
Jason: There's a lot of Darwin going on there.
Leo: You know what is interesting though, speaking of data, the two times that they've been kind of in social media, big stories about Tesla's crashing, Elon's released the, well according to the data we have here, you press the accelerator
Jason: Yea, some guys like my wife's a great driver. It's kind of like a Henny Youngman bit. This guy's like, 'My wife, she's a great driver. There's no way she'd jump the curb and hit the thing. It was obviously the car took over.' And he's like, ok.
Leo: Right there, it says it. If you put a foot on the gas pedal.
Jason: The gas is like, the data said you miss the break and the gas.
Leo: Doesn't it make you nervous? I mean I know you know Elon and you've got Teslas and I'm about, I'm hoping to get a Tesla in a few months.
Jason: Yea, mine comes next week.
Leo: Next week you're getting yours? Ok. So jealous. Mine is in a couple of months. Doesn't it make you nervous that Elon can see everything you do? Down to the point where he presses, where you press a cigarette lighter and
Jason: No, I don't think
Iain: They have a cigarette lighter on the Tesla?
Leo: No, they probably don't (laughing).
Jason: I don't think they keep all that data and I think in the privacy arrangements they can just say like, 'Hey, it's automized and we can put the data of a crash up.' But all cars can do that now with the boxes so they have that. I think it's actually net for society going to be pretty great that we're going to know when accidents happen, who was the actual cause of it. It might be bad for people trying to cover up stuff. Like some guy was using the auto summon feature. The auto summon feature is specifically designed that you have to monitor the car as it pulls out of your garage. Right, so you press the button, the garage opens, the car comes out.
Leo: And because of state laws, you can't even have it go into the street. You have to keep it on your personal property.
Jason: If you want to have these kinds of experimental features, you have to read the manual. And like this person did it and obviously was not watching because if you drop the key, it stops. And if you press any button it stops.
Leo: And it's going very, very slow.
Jason: 5 miles an hour. It backed into another car. It's like, how did that happen? He's like, 'Oh, it didn't stop.' It's like well we know it didn't stop because you didn't press the stop button. You obviously were not watching. Right like
Iain: It does deal with one of the central problems which is human's liable all the time so you know, it's just
Leo: Yea, and these dang computers, just telling the truth. It's making me nuts.
Iain: Well you've seen this with the dash cam thing though. You know I mean initially dash cams were very popular in Eastern Europe because of sudden laws that said if you were in an accident and you have to wait for the police to actually come and sort it out, now everyone's trying to get dash cam because it solves so many problems. And if somebody runs into the side of you, and then does a convincing acting job with the police and it turns up in the extra report, you can get sent to jail. Whereas you can just say, 'Just read that would you and just watch that.' And then problem solved.
Leo: Let's talk about Elon's plan to merge with Solar City.
Jason: Yea, it's brilliant.
Leo: So Elon has, participates in Space X, Tesla and SolarCity. His cousins run it, right?
Jason: Yea, Lyndon and his cousins run SolarCity. I think he's a chairman on that.
Jason: I don't have any inside information on it.
Leo: So, he has announced that he wants to acquire it or merge with it?
Jason: It would be an acquisition. Tesla's a bigger company.
Leo: Tesla's a bigger company, right.
Jason: One's $20 billion, one's $3 billion.
Leo: But I love it because he wants to own the entire chain. He wants to go all the way from the sun to the road.
Jason: It makes perfect sense. And the interesting thing about it is, the press is just kind of sorting out this issue because it's kind of unprecedented that one person started two different companies like this or he was an investor in SolarCity.
Leo: Does he have to recuse himself when the board votes?
Jason: And they did that. So they're not voting. It's up to the other shareholders to vote. So the management teams are not voting on it. It's up to the other ones. But there is a big vision here which is, imagine you got to a Tesla store. You buy a car and they say, 'Would you like solar panels and a power wall to go with it?' And now you're completely off the grid.
Leo: Yea. But by the way, we kind of did that ourselves. I have the SolarCity panels. I've ordered a power wall and of course I've ordered a Tesla. And by the way, when you order a power wall, they ask you, 'And what's your VIN, your Tesla VIN number? Do you own a Tesla (laughing)?
Jason: Right. So now this is all going to be a part of that. And then you can imagine, oh well what if you bought all three of those because SolarCity has sold to you a lease.
Leo: It's a lease. A PPA.
Jason: And again, I don't have this information. But imagine a world where you go to a showroom for a Tesla with solar panels and the power wall. And they say, 'Hey for $350 amonth, would you like solar panels installed, a power wall and a Model 3?
Leo: They will do it all for you.
Jason: And that all of a sudden
Leo: And by the way, your electricity bills would go down.
Jason: Electricity goes down. You're off the grid. And you know what, clean air.
Leo: We're driving in LA and it's smoggy as hell and there's all these cars. And Lisa says, 'All right that's it. I'm buying an electric car.' It really convinces you. It really convinces you of the value of this.
Iain: And this is LA now. I mean LA in the 1970s, I wasn't there but I've seen the photos.
Leo: It was brown. Well, you lived there.
Jason: I lived there and it was interesting to watch in the valley over 10 years the smog was definitely going down because of not just electric cars, which were having a small impact, but also just regulation on carbon cars. And California's very aggressive.
Leo: Emissions controls.
Iain: I think China's going to be huge for this because I mean you go to Shanghai and you can't wear the same shirt for more than a few hours.
Jason: I won't go there. I won't go to China. it's like smoking 5 packs of cigarettes a day.
Leo: I was in Beijing in 2008, it was, you couldn't see.
Jason: it's a national crisis.
Leo: You couldn't see. So he says this might make the first trillion dollar company.
Jason: Yea, I mean if you think about the opportunity to get all of these homes in the United States off the grid and what it will do for society, to have this massive amount of pressure taken off the grid, you know we sometimes fire over into coal to get energy. If everybody started with solar, and I think this is going to be a huge geo-political impact, there's really a multiple impact multiplier here. One, there's the environment. Two, there's cost savings. Three, there's geo-political issues which is do we want to have to buy oil from Venezuela or Russia, Saudi Arabia and other countries that maybe don't have the views of human rights.
Iain: Those damn Canadians.
Jason: Well they don't actually have the same view of human rights as we do. And so this might create a parody where we become less dependent on them. And that's already starting to happen.
Iain: It also solves the problem
Jason: And convenient.
Iain: It also solves the problem in that we've been talking about the smart grid for over a decade now and it just hasn't happened because nobody's going to invest in it. With Musk's plans, you don't actually need necessarily a smart grid because you can store the power yourself, you can use it yourself. It seems like a very sensible option.
Jason: Massively disruptive. When you can start storing...really the two things that they dogged Tesla about and other EV companies were range anxiety, right? They solved that with the super charger network, the larger batteries. So now we solved for that the major issue of range anxiety. The major objection to solar is well what if there's no sun? What if it's a cloudy day? What if you live in a cloudy area? Well you know what? If you have the battery backup...and what about nighttime, right, when you need air conditioning and it's a hot summer night? Well he solved for that too. So there are technological solutions that if you have the wherewithal and the investment ability which you know, these companies take larger amounts of investment, you know it can really change the world. This is something that transcends just SolarCity and Tesla. This is something on a, for the United States and for humanity and the world, we need to get to. So I think this could be a very powerful combination. And every single
Leo: How important is the Gigafactory to this?
Jason: it's actually critical that we make the batteries here and that he has a supplier that can provide the batteries. I mean again, I don't have any inside information about it, but the number of batteries that he's going to need to fulfill, I think it's close to 400,000 orders for the Model 3. And by the way, there was like this weird rumor, like oh my God, people are just buying a bunch of tickets to resell them kind of. It turns out that like 2% of people had bought more than one. So there's not this, you know like people are buying like a thousand reservations to resell them. Which is also an indicator that something good's going on.
Iain: But there's also reports that he's planning a factory in China too.
Jason: Yea, of course.
Iain: And one of the things they say is that he built the Gigafactory as of two years ago was that here, we're building it. We're investing in American jobs. We're doing what Apple and the other companies aren't. And he's done it. But then I think that given the Tesla 3, the enormous demand for the Tesla 3, that's not really going to work. You've got to go to China to actually get something knocked up quickly.
Jason: And also, import tax for China, there's a lot of issues around that. And I think that just making some products local makes more sense than putting them on a big carbon
Iain: But China is a massive electric car market. They have to get into electric cars or they're all going to choke.
Jason: You know what? If you can do what...here's my feeling on Elon and the companies. If watching him do what he's done over the last couple of years, I think he's got a couple of things up his sleeves about how to deploy this financially. That could be very accruative to the bottom line and could make it an even better and more attractive deal for a large portion of people. So if you just think about people who go into the store who are buying a new vehicle or have already bought into these 400,000 people who are buying it or the 100,000 show bought the other cars, the half a million people, they have money and they buy into this vision of the future. Which means the check box they put a power wall in, the check box to put solar on, I think that's at least half of them will do it. Maybe more.
Leo: We did it. We did it. And it wasn't all tied together. It was I had to make three separate calls.
Iain: Any California owner of a Tesla would buy a power wall.
Leo: It makes sense here. But what about all that sun we get. It makes sense.
Iain: We've got the sunshine. We've got the earthquakes. It makes sense.
Jason: Pretty good for a zombie apocalypse.
Leo: Can I take it to New Zealand is the question.
Iain: New Zealand's talking about banning the sell of petrol cars.
Jason: Norway already did it.
Leo: Norway's already done it. Something like that.
Iain: it's the way it's going.
Leo: That's an amazing thing to say that we're going to ban petrol vehicles. Like they won't be
Iain: Well they're going to ban the sale of them. They're not going to ban the driving of them on the road.
Jason: it's going to be a phase out.
Leo: What about trucks?
Jason: Truck automation's happening right now. there's some very interesting
Leo: You can't have an electric truck, right?
Jason: I don't see why not.
Iain: A big enough power.
Jason: You'd need to have more power, more power packs. But that's going to be a very interesting one is when they get these dialed in that you're going to have these convoys of trucks that just automatically go in a convoy on the road. it's going to be pretty interesting. what's interesting also is I think Tesla's on a course to maybe, you'll be able to buy the car based on how many miles you used, it will automatically come to you. So that, you know, have your car come out of the driveway. there's no reason at some point you couldn't click that button and have a car come to you from a central garage.
Leo: Or like you said, across the country.
Jason: Or across the country. So imagine that vision where you don't own a car. You just in a test lab say, 'I need a car for...' You buy a thousand miles a year from Tesla for a dollar a mile. And you're done.
Iain: And also if this actually gets in and we get these kind of cars working on US roads or roads worldwide, coming back to Uber, it makes them an instant cash cow because you can get rid of all that pesky driver business and actually just focus on the software you've got running the entire thing.
Jason: Yea, I'd put that at, I'd put the over under on the majority of miles in a city being driven autonomously at 12 years.
Iain: That seems fair.
Jason: I don't know if you're taking the over or under on that, Iain.
Iain: Yea, I'd
Jason: The majority of miles in a major US city being autonomous. Under 12 or greater than 12?
Iain: Technically, it will be possible in under 12 without a doubt. Legal, regulation, that's going to be absolute key because
Leo: Regulation and acceptance.
Jason: Acceptance, regulation, yea.
Iain: You're talking about taking...this comes back to what we were saying earlier. If that comes through, you're talking about taking truck drivers, bus drivers, taxi drivers, delivery drivers all off the road. Their jobs are gone.
Jason: Stay home.
Leo: One and a half percent of the entire American population is employed as drivers. That's a significant number of people.
Jason: I wonder in the chatroom, would you take under 12 or over 12 for the majority of miles.
Leo: Over. Would you take over or under?
Jason: Majority of miles in a city being autonomous.
Iain: Being legally autonomous I'm going to go over than that.
Jason: Over 12. Ok.
Iain: Conversations are going to lose
Jason: Yea I got a lot of overs. So then if we set it...one person says under. If we set it at 15, would you say over 15 or under 15 for the majority of us? Because this is how the sports lines are set and that's where
Leo: (Laughing) Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to
Iain: it's going to come. It all depends on whether all the politicians have the balls to pass the legislation.
Leo: Dr. Mom's Echo alarm has been going off for a few minutes so I better take a break right now. Sorry about that, Dr. Mom. Alexa, stop. See if that helps. Our show today brought to you by Truck Club. You know about Truck Club? Truck Club is really cool. And I think you need Truck Club because
Jason: A subscription service?
Leo: No, it's not actually. I just want to say, you wear the same vest every time I see you.
Jason: I do. it's uniform.
Leo: it's your uniform.
Jason: My uniform.
Leo: Now, maybe you're such a big shot, it doesn't matter what you wear. But some of us, we want to dress for success. We're dressed for the job we want, not the job we've got. Truck Club is cool. Now you said subscription, that's the first thing people assume. Oh, I'm going to get a box every month. No. This is really cool and there is no cost to you up front. Here's how it works. With Truck Club, you go to trunkclub.com/twit and you sign up. This is free. And you, but you will never go into a store to do your shopping. You're going to get your very own personal stylist for free. She will call you. You will talk. And I had a nice conversation. I'm not telling you her name because I don't want you to steal her. And she, I told her I'm a little portly. A lot portly. I told her...I was blunt. I was honest.
Leo: Candid if you will. And she was not mean. She did not laugh.
Jason: No judgements.
Leo: When I said stocky she said, 'Ok. I've got some ideas.' They put them up on a website. I say yay or nay. And then they sent me the trunk. Wow. Wow. Full of really nice premium clothes. She picked them all. it's better than Garanimals but they all went together. And nice shoes, ties, swim trunks. Beautiful swim trunks. I got some nice swim trunks, short sleeve button down, lightweight blazers. Then you still have paid nothing by the way at this point. Then you pick what you want and you send the trunk back with everything you don't want. And then and only then do you pay just for the clothes you keep. If you keep nothing, you pay nothing. Zero. And it doesn't mean you're going to get another box next month. It is not a subscription. This is from Nordstrom's so you know you're getting really high quality clothing, really great stylists. They have the highest standards in customer service. If you live in Dallas or New York or LA or Chicago or DC, they have Truck Club Clubhouses and your stylist is there. You can work with them and talk to them and meet them in person and even you know, try on clothes there. The nice thing is when your trunk arrives, you have 10 days to try on the clothes, to keep what you want, send back what you don't. it's not a subscription service. Shipping is always free. You only pay for the clothes you keep. That's it.
Jason: Super easy. Easy-peasy. I'm going to try that.
Leo: So great. I'm not a big shopper. They have it for men and women. I am not a big shopper. I don't want to go to the store.
Jason: You don't have to pay to send it back.
Leo: No, everything's free.
Jason: Everything's free.
Leo: If you send it all back you pay nothing.
Jason: So there's no risk.
Leo: there's no risk. Make a statement at the next big event on your calendar. don't wear a puffy vest (laughing). No, no, no I love your puffy vest. it's you. it's you. it's you. Keep it on. Keep it on. It reminds me of the thing they sell for dogs so that they can handle thunderstorms. It swaddles them. You're swaddled in your puffy vest.
Jason: Help me, Truck Club. You're my only hope.
Leo: Help me, Truck Club. Get started today at trunkclub.com/twit. Truckclub.com/twit. They are really awesome. And I have a lot of Truck Club clothes. I've been very, very, very happy. They call it the thunder shirt. The dogs.
Jason: what's nice about it is, going...some people like to go shopping. And most folks hate it. And I think guys particularly. I mean I don't
Leo: I think...I beg to differ.
Leo: Everybody loves to shop, it's just what they're shopping for. So most guys do not like to shop...I do know guys who love to shop for clothes. Most guys, shopping for clothes is not high on their list. Take me to a hardware store or a pen shop or a watch shop.
Jason: Ah, that's true. That's true.
Leo: We love, there's certain things we love to shop for.
Jason: Got it. Clothes are not one of them.
Leo: In my case it ain't clothes.
Iain: No when it comes to Christmas shopping, I map out what I need to get everyone, where the stores are, the shortest route between them and get it done in just one fair shot.
Leo: We need a Trunk Club for Christmas.
Jason: That would be great.
Leo: Oh my God, that would be great. You talk to a stylist. She says, 'Who's on your list?' This is a personal assistant is what it is. You know, Sam Lessin. Love Sam. Nice guy. Started drop.io and went to Facebook. Did the timeline for Facebook. He's created a personal assistant called Fin. $150 bucks a month. And then
Jason: Fin as in finish.
Leo: Fin as in I don't know, maybe. And then $35 bucks, if it's a tough job, up to like you pay an hourly rate. Because I think there's people on the other end. iPhone only. I'm thinking I might cancel. I never use it.
Jason: Oh, you never use it.
Leo: Well, so
Iain: What kind of stuff do you ask for?
Leo: You can do all sorts of things. I mean like weird things like can you find out for me how many people under 15 voted for Brexit? You know the voting age in Scotland is 16?
Iain: Yea, I know.
Leo: What is that all about?
Iain: Well it was done originally for the Scottish Independence Vote because they figured the young people would vote more for independence.
Leo: But see, I leaned that from Fin. I said, 'what's the voting age in Scotland?' And Fin...now if it's hard they'll charge you extra. See, I don't like this because I don't know how much it's going to
Iain: We have Google for this. I mean, call me Mr. Picky.
Leo: But they don't do things like can you ask my friend Jason if he's available for lunch on Thursday? And somebody will call you. it's not all automated.
Jason: there's another company called Operator. They were doing something similar where
Leo: Facebook M is similar.
Jason: The idea is people like the chat interface. And there's a whole caliber of companies which are called the Mom Companies for Millennials. And the concept is whatever your mom did for you, like drove you to
Leo: Oh, this is your Mom.
Jason: So if Mom drove you to your appointment, Mom got you clothes, Mom got you your food, not having to have a lease, all these things that take work and detail, if you can have a millennial never grow up, have to get a car lease or sign a lease for a home, they can go to WeWork and WeWork now has apartments. And you just show up at WeWork, give them a credit card, you have an apartment. No lease.
Leo: In the old days we could just get a wife. Damn them, they got wised up. They wised up. And they realized...no, I'm not kidding. You know, that's what happened is a guy got a wife and then she did all that work. Basically she took over for mom.
Jason: Yea I know but I just
Leo: Then they wised up and they said, 'I'm not doing that. What, are you crazy? I need a mom.
Jason: You should see the punch list my wife gives me. it's like here's the things you're doing this weekend.
Leo: Honey Dos. Honey Dos. But it's sexist right, because I bet you're the one that does the manly htings like you know, hangs up things.
Jason: it's an interesting thing when you look at the assistants that were made, Alexa
Leo: it's all women.
Jason: it's all women, Siri. And so there is a little something there where I think we have to think as a society what we're going to call these assistants.
Iain: One of the reasons, based on the people I've talked to
Leo: Mommy is a good name.
Jason: Yea, mom.
Iain: And one of the reasons they went for female voices is because the people physiologically react better to female voices than they do to male.
Leo: They've always said that the heads-up displays in fighter jets, the voice that tells you 'Pull up. Pull up. Pull up,' if you're in a dive because you passed out is always a female voice for that exact reason. And men particularly, but I think anybody will respond better to a female voice saying, 'Pull up. Pull up.
Iain: You see I mean when it comes to sort of, I was talking about his with a friend because you know the turn by turn directions on your phone, it's always a woman's voice.
Leo: Not mine. I have Arnold Schwarzenegger.
Jason: Yea, me too.
Iain: Really? I want Barry White to do mine.
Leo: For a while I had Gladhouse.
Jason: Then they had C3-P0.
Iain: There used to be a John Cleese Easter Egg in one of them where if you spent like 15 minutes going against the advice, John Cleese would come on and go, 'Are you even listening to me?
Leo: (Laughing) I want that.
Iain: Yea. there's a tremendous market in celebrity doing your
Leo: there's a huge opportunity. TomTom used to do that. They would have celebrity voices. But then nobody uses TomTom.
Jason: Waze uses it like every couple miles.
Leo: Waze does it promotionally, right?
Jason: it's promotional.
Leo: Combines C3-P0 and Star Trek, or Star Wars came out.
Jason: It was free. It was Terminator, C3-P0 they were all free to promote the movie.
Leo: I had on my TomTom, I had the GLaDOS from Portal. She's the evil computer. This was a very bad idea because every time you were supposed to turn right, she would tell you to turn left. I kid you not. This was dangerous.
Jason: Now drive off the pier.
Leo: Exactly. But it was hysterical.
Jason: Human scum.
Iain: I love the Xkcd idea of the warm or colder navigation thing. You drive and it's like colder, colder, oh right turn, warmer, warmer.
Leo: (Laughing) Oh, that's good. That's a way to find it. All right, Apple, now this is rumor and I hate to do rumors except we are getting closer to the time where they're going to have to manufacture. We may even be at that time, they're going to start manufacturing the next generation iPhone and they will typically announce in September for an October release. If you're going to make a hundred million of them by the end of the year, you better start now.
Jason: Better be good.
Jason: Just on a corporate basis, people are not upgrading their phones. They've got to come up with something transformative, more than emojis.
Iain: Or more than dumping the headphone jack, yea.
Leo: Well that's what interesting.
Jason: Oh, that's so infuriating.
Leo: We've seen leaks because one you start making these things, you can keep a tight lid in Cupertino, but once it gets to China, all bets are off.
Jason: And you don't have Steve Jobs policing it anymore.
Leo: That's the other thing. I think that
Jason: Fear of Steve was, a lot of people were like, 'I'm not printing that rumor and not getting invited to WWDC.
Iain: It all kicked down that way if you crossed Steve.
Leo: Really, that would happen? You won't get invited?
Jason: They disinvited
Iain: To WWDC? Are you kidding?
Jason: Yea, you've been disinvited.
Leo: No, I haven't been invited for years.
Iain: I was going to say, we've been invited, we've been on the black list for that for about
Leo: Six years. I've been on the black list for 6 years.
Iain: We beat you by about 4 but yea.
Leo: The Register's been on the list?
Iain: Oh, we've been completely blacklisted by Apple.
Leo: Even Gizmodo got invited back. Wow. What did you do?
Jason: I got Engadget invited back after the Antennagate.
Leo: Yea but it was Gizmodo that bought the phone.
Jason: Well that's part of it. That was bad but I had to email Steve because the Engadget guys got banned because we did Antennagate. We didn't come up with the nameAntennagate, one of the commenters did but we made a phone headline like, 'Antennagate' and Steve was so upset by this.
Leo: It seems so wrong to me.
Iain: He was so thin skinned.
Jason: Well you know Steve
Leo: Well not even thin skinned. it's-- you're saying this not to that journal, you're not just saying to Engadget, you're saying it to their readers. You're saying it to your potential customers. You're not invited.
Leo: And I feel like that...well it's the same thing as Mr. Trump saying to the Washington Post, 'You can't have reporters at my events anymore.
Jason: it's anti-American.
Leo: It feels wrong to me somehow.
Jason: it's anti-free press, anti-American.
Leo: For sure. Of course it's petty too.
Iain: it's an increase in the common tactic though.
Leo: This is how beltway journalism works.
Iain: Well not beltway, Silicon Valley journalism as well. If you talk about the wrong company, then you will get
Leo: So it's not just Apple.
Jason: Well forget about not getting access. How about not getting people to come give a keynote at your conference and then other people getting them for your keynote. So if you think about the D-Conference or Re/Code.
Leo: Well I look at Re/Code, everybody goes to Re/Code.
Jason: it's very clubby.
Leo: Is that because Walt will never say anything bad? No.
Jason: No, no, no.
Leo: Walt will say bad things. Carol will say bad things.
Jason: there's two ways to'there's a certain way to go about it. You can't be super sharp. You have to be, there's a way
Leo: Gentle. Gentle criticism.
Jason: Yea. there's a way
Leo: Which Walt is very good at that. Because Walt is very positive with Apple but as everybody points out, he's like 'no, no, no, no. I don't have any special treatment from Apple. I'll say negative things. Look, I didn't like the track pad on the mouse. I thought it was not as good as it could be.
Iain: This is a guy who managed to do an entire IO6 review and never once mentioned the fact that the maps app was absolutely useless.
Leo: So you have to do it, you have to do it
Jason: Maintaining access is important.
Leo: This is why I take it with a great deal of pride that I get invited to nothing.
Jason: But here's the thing. If you look at Thernanos. I'm putting in a society. You know it took a Wall Street Journal writer in Brooklyn, John Carreyrou who should have gotten a Pulitzer for this and I hope they correct that.
Leo: Yea, he should.
Jason: Because it's just tremendous journalism. It couldn't happen here because the other thing is
Leo: Silicon Valley access.
Jason: If you look at even, and you know, listen. I'm here and I'm massively conflicted as an angle investor. People know my conflicts so they can take my words...yea, I'm up front with it. But there's other people and I recently had this on my podcast where I brought up some conflicts somebody had and it was like, "Oh, my God. You were being a bully to this other journalist." I was like, "Well, here's the thing. You have to state what your conflicts are right up front. If your spouse works at Google or Facebook or Twitter"
Leo: As Kara Swisher's did.
Jason: Kara Swisher's did, or Jessica Lessin's does, you know it's just one of those complications that we have to be more honest about. And if you live here...the problem with it is if you live here, your chances of winding up married to a tech person is like 98%. If you live in New York and you work for The New York Times your chances of marrying a Wall Street person is 6%. So we just have this inherent conflict. Then if you marry a person that works for a tech company or the person you're married to as a journalist winds up going to work for a tech company which could also happen, then all of a sudden your net worth could be based upon that. So it's just very problematic here. I don't think you have a sharp...sites like Upside and Red Herring and those kinds of
Leo: Oh, those were the days.
Jason: Those were like very edgy
Leo: Tony Perkins.
Jason: Tony was like a jerk. And it was like his redeeming quality.
Leo: He was a jerk and that was good.
Jason: At the time. He was kind of jerky to people in a good way.
Leo: it's like me. I'm jerky to people.
Jason: You're candid I think. You're a unique snowflake with sharp edges.
Leo: I don't even want to talk to them. I don't want to talk to anybody. I don't want to talk to PR people. And admittedly I don't get as much kind of inside
Jason: But look at your audience. Look at your audience.
Leo: there's a real value to...it's too small for them to care.
Jason: No. The opposite. Your audience...please. They care. The audience, your audience is so loyal and so large because people know you're not in the pocket.
Jason: That is clear.
Leo: I hope that's true and that's one of the...that was actually one of the signature goals in my career.
Jason: Yea. Mission accomplished.
Iain: No, I mean
Leo: And I did that by being a dick as much as possible.
Jason: Being candid. You know you've got to be candid. You have to build credibility. And that's why people look at like TechCrunch as kind of a joke or you know they don't look at Walt as a joke or Kara as a joke but there is a sense that they have to maintain their--
Leo: The companies that take investment money.
Jason: Some lost all credibility.
Iain: Yea, well to be honest, TechCrunch is the same. If you're writing about companies that you yourself are investing in
Leo: Haven't they transcended that now? In their own
Iain: They might think they have.
Leo: it's still in the water.
Jason: it's cheerleading. Yea, here's the thing. When Mike was there he was a jerky publisher who would say anything. But there was also this undertone of
Leo: They were also investing in it.
Jason: They were also invested in the pocket. So it all comes out in the end. You know journalism is at a crossroads right now because you have the conflict of interest, right? CNN getting owned by a big media conglomerate, Jeff Bezos owning Amazon. You have this massive conflicted industry. And then at the same time, the business model was imploded so there's no room to pay for investigative journalist anymore. Their ranks have been totally slaughtered. And we really need to think about freedom of the press and obviously the Peter Theil Gawker thing. No big winner there. Just a lot of bad actors actually.
Iain: Yes, that was the problem.
Jason: Is a problem. We really need as a society to figure out what is the, where is the independent journalist core that is sharp and aggressive and protects society and gets us to the truth. Because the current press corps are largely failing at that.
Iain: I agree totally. No, no, I mean seriously. When we get companies saying, and we've had this with some of the biggest companies saying, 'We're no longer going to cooperate with you because of that particular story that you did.' Well, fine. You know I mean, this is the readers don't pay us to write what you would like us to write. The readers pay us what they want to
Leo: It seems like a very old-fashioned. But this has always been a problem with trade press going back to Hi-Fis and cars which is to some degree always press release journalism. And it was understood, if you read Car and Driver, you don't read it for their hard hitting analysis of whether a car is good. it's really a fan-zine for the industry. And I think a lot of tech journalism
Iain: Far too much of it.
Leo: But it's not a bad...well ok, I'll give you, here's a great example.
Jason: No, it's a bad thing.
Iain: Back in the 90s it was a good thing because people were so scared about technology. They were so worried about it.
Leo: It was a cheerleader.
Iain: We need a cheerleader. But it's mainstream now. it's not longer
Leo: Yea, now it's adversarial.
Iain: Critical, you know, holding these people's feet to the fire.
Leo: Well here's a really good example which is this Apple headphone jack. Actually we should take a break and then we'll come back. Because Nilay Patel wrote a great takedown. By the way, he was the one who also said, 'Here's 5 questions Kevin Kelly ought to have asked when he visited Magic Leap.' That was Nilay also. And Nilay, I have to say, Nilay of all of the guys out there, and of course he worked for you at Engadget, right?
Leo: Is willing to stick his neck out and say nasty-ass things. And in this case he says, 'What Apple's doing or potentially doing with the headphone jack is criminal almost.' it's anti-user. And then one article
Iain: It was a beautifully sharp article. I hate to endorse the competition but that was well worth the read.
Leo: And then you see John Gruber, who writes during Fireball which is probably one of the premier Apple blogs saying, 'Well, you know, Apple, they're brilliant this way. They discontinued the floppy drive and that was a good thing.' Anyway, we'll talk about that in a minute.
Iain: Yea, I could run for quite some time on that.
Leo: (Laughing) This was a good week. We had a lot of fun. I wasn't here, that's part of the reason, and I'm as interested as you might be in this little mini-video we made of some of the highlights from this week's episode. Take a look.
Narrator: Previously on TWiT.
Rene Ritchie: Now how do I know you're doing it together because your green screen skills are so top notch.
Alex Lindsay: Well you will notice that we don't actually cross over here. We have been really working on some of the keying, so this is the hardest part right there is to...that's a one key over the other one.
Narrator: Security Now.
Father Robert Ballecer, SJ: You know what I can trust, Steve? I can trust my home security cameras.
Steve Gibson: The title of this article on Reddit was 'I bought and returned a set of WiFi connected home security cameras. Forgot to delete my account and I can now watch the new owner.' You just plug them in and they don't ask any questions. Everything just works.
Narrator: This Week in Google.
Jason Howell: This Two Factor change that Google made, is this an improvement? Does this make it easier? What do you think, Gina?
Gina Tripani: Definitely. This change is instead of having to like look at a code in an SMS you get a push notification with a button, yes authenticate me or no.
Jason: I think I did something I should not have done here, guys. I'm like I'm going to go ahead and do this Two Factor thing. The number I gave it was my Google Voice number.
Gina: Oh, no.
Jason: My Google Voice number is on the other side of the authentication.
Jeff Jarvis: Oh, Jason.
Jason: I think I'm screwed, you guys.
Jeff: I think you might be.
Narrator: TWiT. Yes, TWiT.
Jeff: Jason's been locked out of the office because Two Factor won't let him back in.
Iain: That was genius.
Leo: Thanks to Jason Howell for taking over TWiG for me and for Fr. Robert Ballecer for taking over Security Now. And of course Andy and Alex and Rene for doing MacBreak Weekly.But I am back and we'll go back to the...I'm sorry, I'llbe back for the shows next week. Hey, Jason Howell is here from Tech News Today. what's coming up this week, Jason?
Jason: Thanks, Leo. Here is a look at a few things we're going to be keeping an eye on in the week ahead. First on Monday, June 27th, Snapchat launches its real live digital publication. One new post every weekday on technology topics that are going to appeal to its users. Also on Wednesday, June 29, AMD is schedule to release its price conscience entry into powering desktop VR, the Radeon RX 480 GPU. That will be priced at around $200 dollars. On June 30, Apple's going to be pulling the plug on its iAd App Network with the associated API scheduled to be deprecated. This was initially announced back in January and developers are encouraged to remove the deprecated iAD framework classes from their apps by then as no more ads are going to be served. I promise, there will be even more tech news all week. But I'm going to be out on vacation so you can find MeganMorrone bringing the tech news every Monday through Friday on Tech News Today. That's a look at the week ahead. Back to you, Leo.
Leo: Monday through Friday at 4:00 PM Pacific. Thank you, Jason. 7:00 PM Eastern time, 2300 UTC.
Iain: I'llbe there Thursday.
Leo: And you're a regular on that show.
Iain: I'llbe there on Thursday, this Thursday.
Leo: Love it when you're on.
Iain: Always good fun. Megan's a great lass and Jason is spot on.
Leo: A great lass, is that what you said?
Iain: Yea. Sorry. Are you mocking my culture?
Leo: Is lass the issue? Lassie.
Jason: Hey everybody, while Leo logs into his Audible
Leo: How did you know I was doing that?
Jason: I see you.
Leo: I'm logging in.
Jason: Audible has an amazing service. it's the platinum service. You get 20 credits year. I've done it for 5 years and currently my pick of the week is Sapiens, a great history of mankind.
Leo: Oh, that sounds good.
Jason: By Yuval Noah Harari. It is 15 hours of incredible, incredible history of humans. And did you know that there are many humans on the planet concurrently, different species of humans.
Leo: The Neanderthal now is turning out not to be the failure that we all thought. In fact, are very robust species.
Jason: And this book is blowing my mind currently.
Leo: Can't wait.
Jason: Over 46 hundred ratings. And that's how you pick a book on Audible. You look at those ratings. 4.6 stars so a large number of ratings with a very high rating. And what I do, when you get that great platinum edition
Leo: You can get two books a month. Which is nice.
Jason: You get tons of books and what you do is, you're opportunistic, you can go right into a category where you feel like you need to beef up. Like for me it was science and technology and you just pick whatever 5 of the top 10 science books you think will make you smart.
Leo: Brilliant. Brilliant.
Jason: That's how I do it. I just look at the rankings, you browse Audible. You look at the top rankings and then you just buy the books that have the highest ranking and that have the most reviews. And you will become smarter.
Leo: That is...what a great tip.
Jason: And all your books are refundable. If you don't like a book, there's a money back guarantee.
Leo: Is that true? I didn't know that.
Jason: That is true.
Leo: You know why? Because I've never turned in a book.
Jason: Exactly. But no fear, no fear.
Leo: This is the Kevin Kelly book we were talking about yesterday. He's going to be on on Monday on Triangulation.
Jason: A best seller as well.
Leo: it's really, really good. Lots of stars on that. Here's the deal. Go to Audible.com/twit2. You're going to sign up for the platinum account as Jason was saying. That's two books a month. You also get the daily digest of The New York Times or The Wall Street Journal. Pay nothing for the 1st 30 days. Cancel in that time, you're gone, you're done, you're free. But you do get to keep the books. You're going to get those 2 books for free no matter what happens. I don't think you're going to cancel. Jason, you said 5 years. I've been an Audible member since 2000, 16 years.
Jason: Wow. Back when they were not part of Amazon. They were just a little, independent company. But they've gotten so good.
Leo: I had the what was it, they called it the Otto or something. They had a...it was before anybody had iPhones or iPods.
Jason: Yea, it was a device.
Leo: It had its own device. I would plug in my Diamond Rio and listen to Audible.
Jason: I tell you, they've really worked on...one of the things they've done, is they really worked on the app. So it used to be that you had to podcast and sync your phone. Now you'll download, even if you're on your data plan, it will download just enough for you to get started with a book. So you could login through the web app. And so I keep myself logged in on Chrome so I will go in through the Chrome app, buy the book and I double click and go over to my app. And I stream it. I download it and I just buy books by the half dozen.
Leo: Well the best, most economical way of course with an Audible subscription. Audible.com/twit2 to get yours. This is nice too. They've added a capability, and this is great if you're on a Chromebook or any device that doesn't have an Audible app which is very few, because there's iOS, Android, Windows Phone, Windows 10. But you can stream from the website. So you can listen...I'm listening to this wonderful book.
Jason: Which one?
Leo: My Life in France by Julia Child.
Jason: Oh, wow.
Leo: it's so wonderful.
Iain: Friends of mine that are actually going to France and Airbnb the place
Leo: That's why we're listening. What? You can do that?
Jason: You can Airbnb the place.
Iain: You can Airbnb. They're going to France specifically just to hire out Julia Child's kitchen.
Leo: You can get Julia Child's old house? Oh, man. This is so much fun. And that's why we're listening to it. Lisa and I listen together. That's another thing. it's a fun thing for couples to do. We listen together.
Jason: Do you know about the sleep timer?
Jason: That's the brilliant thing is you can sleep time it in the app. So you can say, 'I want to listen.' So I've been listening to Sapiens and
Leo: I'm getting that, by the way.
Jason: I have a hard time getting to bed sometimes so I put it on 20 minutes. And then if I'm not asleep I'lljust go another 20 minutes. But if I do fall asleep I know I might have missed the last 5 minutes so I just rewind a little bit. And I put myself to bed sometimes with a book.
Leo: Now by the way, it looks like they have the unabridged, but it looks like they might also have the abridged version. Now I'm not a big...no, it's just a...oh, this is like analysis and review so this is like a companion version.
Leo: You know they have the great courses now, which is college courses. I listen to a lot of those.
Jason: I know. I have two of those right now. I'm listening to Building a Better Vocabulary.
Leo: Oh, really?
Jason: Which you know, I don't think I have a weak vocabulary.
Leo: How pusillanimous of you.
Iain: Is it making your more loquacious?
Leo: I think the quotation and
Jason: Let's not start a donnybrook, gentlemen, over this.
Leo: (Laughing) this looks good. Oh, that's great.
Jason: And it's really good. The guy, this guy Kevin Flanigan.
Leo: 18 hours. That's a lot of vocabulary.
Jason: Well, you know what? You go on a nice hike. I like to do my hikes and I put it on for a hike and it's just nice to fill in.
Leo: You know what I love is etymologies.
Jason: Well that's because
Leo: Remember that?
Iain: it's how the word's developed.
Jason: That's what it is.
Leo: Because you can look at the etymologies, the first use of a word. it's really fun.
Iain: Bruce Rice has done some great books of language for that sort of thing.
Leo: By the way, Bill Bryson, another great...A Walk in the Woods which is the story of walking the Appalachian Trail is so great.
Iain: The Most Constant is the first one of his I read and it still has one of the finest opening lines of a 20th century book.
Leo: What was it?
Iain: I was born in Des Moines Iowa. Somebody had to be.
Leo: (Laughing) very funny writer. Is this the one you were talking about where he's talking about language, The Mother Tongue?
Iain: Very good read.
Leo: So we've just given you about 30 books you're going to want on Audible. You get 2 free. Go to Audible.com/twit2 and God save you. Heaven help you because I don't know how you're going to choose. But the nice thing is, another 2 books next month, right?
Jason: I'm going to read my own book.
Leo: Are you writing a book?
Jason: Just sold it.
Iain: Oh, congratulations.
Jason: Yea, I just sold my book.
Jason: it's a big deal, yea. Harper Business.
Leo: Oh, nice. That's nice. You get Gary Varnerchuk money?
Leo: Oh! Burn.
Jason: I think I got...I definitely got more on my first book than he did because
Leo: But he got like a 12 book deal. That doesn't count.
Jason: This is
Leo: Really, don't do 12 at a time.
Jason: No, I'm only going to do one, I think one book in this lifetime.
Leo: what's it called?
Jason: I can't say the name but it's going to be about angel investing and how wealth is created in the 21st century.
Leo: Oh, that's going to be a must.
Jason: Yes, I wrote the first 4 or 5 chapters and the woman said
Leo: Harper Business is very good.
Jason: It was...I basically had an auction for it.
Jason: So they did an auction and
Leo: This is why we're sitting here and he's driving a Tesla.
Iain: Wait a minute, you drive a Tesla as well.
Leo: I'm just trying to chum up with you (laughing).
Iain: No, I'm quite happy with my Prius so I'lljust sit here.
Jason: The best moment was they said, 'Harper Business Week. We have Jim Collins.
Leo Love him.
Jason: Peter Drucker.
Leo: Good to great.
Jason: And we need Jason Calacanis.
Jason: And I said, 'Wow. That is the biggest line of BS I've ever heard.
Leo: That is a trio. That is a trio.
Jason: Those guys are giants. I'm not going to hold a candle. But I'm pretty excited about it. I feel like if you're going to write a book, it has to be something you're an absolute expert on, you know better than anybody.
Leo: It shouldn't be hard work. It should just flow from you.
Jason: It should be easy. And you know what? Writing about angle investors, telling my story of how I invested in these companies and all the money I lost and the ones that were hits and the ones that are in between.
Leo: That was my problem. I've written many books and I didn't know anything about what I was writing. It was always work.
Jason: You should write about broadcasting. You should write a book on broadcasting.
Leo: I don't know anything about that either. I just...it's too much work for too little money. But I don't get the auction.
Jason: A book on broadcasting would be amazing.
Leo: Would it?
Jason: If you just did a book on broadcasting like here's what I've learned in 25 years, for people who want to be broadcasters.
Leo: 25 years? December, 40 years.
Jason: My 40 years in broadcasting, how to break in to broadcasting.
Leo: I'm 40 years in broadcasting.
Iain: Back in the day
Jason: If you want to be a good broadcaster, you got to do the crank.
Leo: it's all about the tape recorder.
Jason: And make sure the antenna's pointed in the right direction. Crowd up on the microphone.
Leo: The first microphone I ever used was a vintage RCA Ribbon Mic hanging from the ceiling.
Iain: Oh, my word.
Leo: And it...I'llshow you.
Jason: That's hilarious.
Leo: Oh, my God, I look just like this. This is it. It was a beautiful 77-DX.
Jason: And did they have pictures on the desk where they were like clank, clank, clank and the door
Leo: I'm Leo, and I'm here to tell you about...this was it. The RCA 77-DX.
Jason: Who is at the door?
Leo: Great mic. Oh, you can buy it on EBay. Wait a minute.
Jason: How to break into broadcasting.
Leo: I'llbe back with you guys in a minute.
Jason: Yea, how to break into broadcasting.
Leo: Two thousand dollars? What?
Jason: That's unbelievable.
Leo: So these ribbon mics are very fragile because it's a carbon ribbon inside the microphone. They break easily. I would love to have one.
Iain: My brother-in-law used to be upstairs from one of the alchemists on Abbey Road and they had
Iain: Yea, they have
Iain: They have serious issues now because they have media which they can't, you know
Leo: If they play it back it will shred.
Iain: Well no, they've got the heads on the tape player to play the media back. So old and no longer made, they don't have enough head time to actually play the recordings back and digitize them. So now they're going to have to go to people and get them to
Leo: Make a new
Iain: it's an enormous problem.
Leo: But are these Beatles' recordings?
Iain: there's a lot of Beatles recordings. But everyone was recorded at Abbey Road.
Leo: Well of course. But just the Beatles' recordings alone, there's stuff that we haven't heard? Is that what you're saying?
Iain: there's stuff that...actually to be honest, you probably shouldn't hear because it's not their best stuff but it is new stuff. And people will buy it because it's the Beatles and you know, you do. But there's enormous, we are reaching, well we're kind of going through a digital dark age at the moment where all the stuff that was
Leo: No, you're absolutely right.
Iain: Up until and through the 80s and the early 90s, we're going to lose.
Leo: You're going to lose it.
Leo: I was on a campaign for some years to, I was talking to many of the broadcasters I knew who had great interviews with Jimi Hendrix and others. There was a guy in Toronto who interviewed everybody. it's on reel to reel tapes in his garage. it's John Donabie. I said, 'Joh, you've got to let me help you. We will get these tapes digitized because in a year or two, they're going to fall apart and that's it.
Jason: They did it for the movie industry.
Leo: And I will help you put this online.
Iain: Isn't there a case of that with the 1st televised Super Bowl where someday had recorded it.
Jason: They don't have it.
Leo: They recorded over it.
Jason: there's one guy who has a copy and they won't buy it from him.
Iain: Yea, it's so tied up in legal problems that no one can ever see it.
Leo: I saw a clip of it. it's awful.
Jason: Yea, just cut him a check.
Leo: it's VHS.
Iain: it's just guys throwing a ball around and kicking it occasionally.
Jason: He's fumbling the ball constantly.
Iain: Well first off, it shouldn't even be called football but that's a story for another day.
Leo: Nilay...go ahead.
Jason: Well I was just going to say, with this headphone thing, are they simply removing the jack?
Leo: We don't know.
Jason: Ok, let's say
Leo: Because it's all rumor at this point.
Jason: But if they are removing it. Let's just assume that it's true.
Leo: It would be a lightning cord. By the way, there's precedent for this. Motorola's new Moto Z or Zed as you people say.
Iain: Yea, the guys who invented the language.
Leo: Ok, whatever. Is a Type-C connector with no headphone jack and both Type-C and lightning are data connectors as well. Charging ports. So you can get digital audio out. You would have to have a DAC, a digital to analog converter either in a dongle or built into headphones that would plug into the lightning port. Apple does, Beats does make lightning port headphones. Philipps also makes lightning port headphones. And the question is, and it's unknown whether Apple would bundle a dongle.
Iain: Are you kidding? They're going to make you pay through the nose for that.
Leo: They're going to make you pay $39.95.
Jason: For a dongle.
Leo: So Nilay Patel, and again, we should say this is a rumor, although getting more credible as we get closer to the launch date, taking the...and I love Nilay for saying this. Taking the headphone jack off phones is user-hostile and stupid. Have some dignity.
Jason: Well I mean is there motivation because they bought Beats to make a royalty every time somebody makes headphones for Apple?
Jason: That would be really...that would show that Apple is so desperate to make more money that they have to like close the ecosystem even more. What is the upside to not having it is what I'm trying to figure out.
Iain: That's the rub, yea.
Jason: Is it the upside the costs?
Leo: Well you know they'll have some statement. You know, Jonny Ive will come on and say, 'After really thinking about the purpose of a headphone jack, we have decided the best way to do it is to not do it at all. What we've done is we made the invisible headphone jack you've always wanted.
Jason: Now, you don't to worry about mistaking your headphone jack for your lightning connector.
Leo: it's not to make it thinner. You could argue that there will be more room in the case, a little bit for battery.
Iain: Maybe a millimeter or two.
Leo: Not a lot. Simplifies it and of course Apple's always been about fewer buttons, fewer controls, fewer jacks. They made the MacBook with one Type-C connector.
Iain: Yea, and hasn't that paid bonuses for years.
Jason: The new MacBook uses a C, USBC. Now does that mean the iPhone is going to move to a USBC?
Leo: No. Apple has said we will make it with a lightning port. In fact at this point, if they do do this, now they're really committed to the lightning port for many more years because well the last thing you're going to do is next year make it a Type-C connector and say, 'Oh, and by the way, that perfect headphone that you just bought doesn't work anymore.
Leo: But we've got a dongle for the dongle. it's a double dongle.
Jason: We figured out a way for you to fill landfills with iPhone 4 connectors.
Iain: This is a classic case of the Cupertino idiot tax. There are enough Apple sheep out there who will buy whatever they can get because they were told it's cool and yea, this is great. Yea, I can save a millimeter in my phone. It only cost me $30 dollars.
Leo: And Apple will undoubtedly have a reason. Now one thing Nilay brings up is digital rights management because of course the lightning port is an analog hole, right? And I don't think this is, I can't imagine this is a problem for anybody in the industry, but you could of course take copy protected music and record it. But nobody's doing that because most music is no longer copy protected so I don't think that could be the reason. It is, it may have a significant impact you know, for podcasters?
Iain: There is no positive use case for why people should do this other than Apple is telling them they should do it.
Leo: Let's check in with John Gruber, famous Apple blogger.
Jason: When you plug in, just on a technical basis, if I plug in my power cable and am charging my phone, and I want to listen to Audible, because wait. That's a major use case for me. I plug my phone in and I'm listening.
Leo: You put it in a dock and you listen. Well you know, they put it on the bottom, they kind of screwed that up anyway, right?
Jason: Right, but now, would there be like a pass through? Because I had this with USBC, I had to buy a pass through so I'd like daisy chain
Leo: You'd have to buy a new dock as well.
Iain: It just, you know.
Leo: John Gruber says, look, lets...he says, 'Let's compare this to arguments about removing floppy drives in the iMac in 1998.
Jason: it's on your playlist.
Leo: That's my song (laughing). it's my song.
Iain: I like the chick on the fire escape. Who is this?
Leo: That's a good line. it's, oh it's Broadway. it's In the Heights. it's Miranda's first
Iain: I prefer the death metal version.
Jason: Leo, you're going to buy a new dock for your material.
Leo: Now what you could do, what you could do and I think one thing people are speculating is now you're going to see a play with people walking around with their speakers blaring from their iPhone listening to music coming out of their iPhone.
Iain: Yea, I know.
Jason: don't be that person in Starbucks like this. Yea, no, I'm at Starbucks. Yea.
Leo: That's the Kim Kardashian style.
Jason: No, I talked to him. I'm just like, really? The speakerphone button is for when you're in your car not in line at Starbucks.
Iain: Yea. Well it's the same with the Apple Watch or smart watches. it's yea, no, no, no, oh really? You're fine, ok. Great. Well everyone's here. The herpes result was fine.
Leo: (laughing) it's only type 1. don't worry. don't worry.
Jason: I'm a huge fan of Dick Tracey and I actually think this is cool. Yea.
Leo: You can't do that with the Apple Watch.
Jason: No. Fitbit doesn't do that.
Leo: Stupid watch.
Jason: Stupid watch.
Leo: So, ok, so I guess we're all in agreement. This is just...the real test. I think it's going to be an interesting test of how devoted people are to the Apple logo. Apple made a, WWDC made some very credible reasons for wanting to be all Apple. All Mac, iPhone, Apple Watch. They will all work together. You'll be able to walk up to your Macintosh and your iPhone will unlock. And so there's really buy-in into that ecosystem. Will the
Leo's Phone: (Playing music).
Jason: Here we go, here we go. Go buy whatever Johnny Ives makes.
Iain: TWiT, the musical.
Jason: He's breaking out a new headset.
Leo: So I don't...I have no idea what I was talking about. So it's a question of whether people will...will this be enough for you to say let me look at an Android phone?
Iain: I think Apple is going through a long, ever since Jobs died, is going through a long experiment as to how badly they can screw their customer base and still keep them. You know it's by increments how much, what can we sell them that's useless? What doesn't work? They've lost their focus that Jobs had.
Leo: That's sad.
Jason: Something that you know, there's this big question of you know, post Steve Jobs, is the company going to decline, go sideways or go up. And people have been looking at it. And it looked like with the iPhone 6, like ok, they've still got it.
Leo: Most successful, most profitable company of all time.
Jason: Right. And then you start, then you're like oh the watch looks so promising. And then the watch is not actually very good. And you're like ok, now I've got a check in that box. Then you look at the new iOS release and it's like the most interesting thing is emojis. it's like hmm. what's going to come out that's going to be transformative or interesting and all I see is more skews of the existing product basically. The iPad Pro.
Leo: Isn't the problem to some degree that you can't do much with a new smartphone that will make it unique? Now taking a unique approach, to say hey our newest feature is we're taking a feature out. But they'll make the case that the audio's going to be better because you have an external DAC, you have a higher quality DAC.
Iain: If you ask most people, if your phone is good enough as it is, most people will say yes.
Leo: This from the company that's been selling those crappy white earbuds for
Iain: Oh, God, those things leak sound like nothing else. If you've got one of those irritating people on the bus or the train who's got their little ear buds in their ears and sharing their music with everyone else.
Leo: Twisted Mister in our chatroom has an interesting statement. Invincible companies: HP, Sony, Compaq, all trashed themselves doing exactly what Apple is.
Iain: it's a good argument.
Jason: it's not a bad argument.
Iain: I'd add IBM into there but yea.
Jason: They sold their hardware business when the getting's good.
Iain: Yea, they got out when the getting's was good
Leo: That's what HP has done, haven't they? They spun off the PC division.
Jason: Yea. it's, they...I think the issue is we've kind of reached peak iPhone and the iPhone was such a transcendent huge product that was so wildly profitable. What could they add to the iPhone 7 is my question for you guys that would make you immediately buy it? Like is there something that you're missing or something that you can predict would make you go I have to have it? And that's where I think a lot of the smartphone companies are going to have a problem is does the Samsung S8 or 7, whatever comes next, the iPhone 7 or 8, does it actually make you wait in line?
Leo: Now remember
Iain: I think VR's going to be very powerful to this.
Jason: That would be one. The only one I can think of.
Leo: Or Magic Leap or AR or something, a new UI.
Iain: Well if you can't put Magic Leap into a smartphone.
Jason: But you can't see through it.
Iain: I mean the big thing with, one of the things
Leo: Well you can't, can you. You've got a camera so. We've had augmented reality browsers on phones before.
Iain: But I mean one of the things from Google IO is they bring out this new range of VR ready phones which have up to spec decent memory, decent screen latency, good screens all the way. They're going to cost a fair amount more and they're going to have to run Android and whatever they're calling back then. But that could be...as someone who's got the Samsung VR headset, that could be a good reason to buy.
Leo: Well there's no question that Android has spent this time catching up. I remember talking to Steve when he was on the beach, when he was in between Apple I and Apple II. He was working for Pixar and Nest, or Next. He ran Pixar and started Next. And he was really clear. And of course remember, this was Steve mad at being fired at Apple. But he said, 'We had a lead against Microsoft. We had a 10 year lead when we came out with the Macintosh in 1984. We squandered that lead. And by 1994, Windows had caught up.' And he was talking about Windows 3.1.1. He wasn't talking about Windows 95. He said Windows had caught up. And he saw that as a clear and present danger for Apple. Is Apple today in the same position?
Iain: Apple's in serious trouble at the moment unless they can find something.
Leo: Because these phones, this is a HTC, I'm sorry, a One Plus 3, $400 dollars. I would argue every bit as good in every respect as an iPhone. Looks in fact a lot like an iPhone. Has a headphone jack I might add.
Iain: Xiaomi and Huawei come into the market and actually start pushing into the US.
Leo: Automatically plays show tunes which is a selling point.
Iain: You do love your show tunes.
Leo: I love my show tunes. Nothing isn't better with a show tune.
Iain: A funeral?
Leo: I've already made my playlist. I've already made my playlist. No, I actually did. I don't know. I was feeling depressed a couple of months ago. I made my funeral play list. it's good to think about these things ahead of time.
Iain: I can say that the wife and I have discussed this.
Jason: Free Bird?
Iain: She is getting
Leo: Free Bird is not on it. it's sad songs. I want people to cry at my funeral. Not happy songs. But one of them is Rent, the song about 'With five thousand'la la.' Could you sing that at my funeral?
Jason: I'llsing that at your funeral. Sure. For sure. Lock it up. Lock it up. Dearly beloved, we are gathered here today. Let's go crazy.
Leo: Let's go crazy.
Iain: I would have loved Highway to Hell but I discussed this with my sister and
Leo: You can't do Highway to Hell.
Jason: Or Stairway to Heaven.
Iain: No because this is for
Leo: Stairway to Heaven, Highway to Hell.
Iain: No, there's no way Stairway to Heaven is going to be on.
Leo: By the way, congratulations, Led Zeppelin.
Jason: They won.
Leo: They won in court. I think it's cool.
Jason: That's a long case. Going on for 50 years (laughing).
Leo: What was the deal? This was a new case against Led Zeppelin, brought by another band.
Iain: The band that they toured with.
Jason: it's just one tiny little riff clearly inspired. The rest of the song has nothing to do with it.
Iain: Yes, exactly.
Jason: One little riff.
Iain: it's days'we're back to the API theory, software APIs situations. it's just--
Jason: what's going on with the monitor? They discontinued, Apple discontinued
Leo: Oh, this is another one.
Jason: Cinema display.
Leo: So Apple has said, 'We're not going to make monitors anymore.' Now there's a couple of possibilities.
Jason: Wait, wait, wait.
Leo: A couple of possibilities. One is that they have a new monitor and they're just selling off the stock.
Iain: That's my understanding.
Leo: Well but that's not the understanding I get from Apple's own statement. Did you read what Apple said when'let me see if I can find this. They basically said, 'there's a lot of other people making great monitors. Just get one of those.' Does that sound like a company that's selling off stock?
Jason: That's bizarre. They really said that? I literally was tweeting to Tim Cook about this. Like I bought the Mac Pro with 4K, you know the cylinder, and I had to for my video editing folks, and I had to buy like Asus monitors, or LG 4K monitors to run with it because they don't make a 4K monitor. Then I bought the 5K iMac and the iMac, then I wanted to get a 2nd monitor. I'm like am I supposed to by a 2nd iMac and use it as a pass through display or am I--? So then I bought the wide screen LG and it makes no sense.
Leo: Here's what Appel says. 'We're discontinuing the Apple Thunderbolt Display be available through Apple.com, Apple's retail stores and Apple Authorized Resellers while supplies last. There are a number of great third-party options available for Mac users.
Jason: Until we...they don't have. Until we come out with something better.
Leo: Here's what I think. A monitor is a commodity. Apple doesn't even want to be in this business. There are too many other people underselling them with great monitors. I mean you can go to Dell and get a fantastic 27", 34" display for less than Apple sells it Thunderbolt display. So I think...and there's another reason. They don't want to make computers that need monitors anymore. They only make two right now, the Mac Mini and the Mac Pro, neither of which I can imagine are very good sellers. The Mac Mini is not particularly where they want to be. The want to sell the iMac. They'll make iMacs. They'll still make iMac monitors.
Jason: High margin.
Leo: And one of the ways that the iMac 5K works is because it is built into the system, they can have a dedicated chip running that monitor.
Jason: A dedicated chip, yea.
Leo: it's my feeling that Apple says, 'I don't want to be in this market.
Jason: I think it's a head fake. it's a head fake because they've been, you know they've been talking about this television service. So I think they're out of the monitor business.
Leo: Oh, come on. They're going to make a TV?
Jason: Well they've been talking about it for a long time. And they haven't
Leo: They...we should say, they have not been talking about it for a long time.
Jason: Well, they've been negotiating with the...they have Apple TV.
Leo: Well they do want to buy, and they do want to do cable on Apple TV.
Jason: And they want to license content. And there was somebody floating by HBO at some point. So they clearly know. Amazon's now in the content business. Netflix is a homerun. The Apple TV's getting more sophisticated, has a more powerful processor in it. I think they're going to make a, I still believe they're going to make an actual, physical TV. And I think that this is some sort of head fake and maybe they're just going to jump the fence and make an 8K monitor or you know, make a 5K monitor, something truly transformative and they just don't want to tip their cards.
Iain: Yea, it's a possibility. My read of this was they will have a better monitor coming along in a couple of months. Clear the shelves out. Get the
Leo: Certainly that would be the normal course of events. it's just that weird thing about there are plenty of other 3rd party monitors. it's so weird.
Jason: That statement is very oddly written. Because it doesn't say until we start making them or tune in to another time.
Leo: That's the implication.
Jason: it's like you can enjoy them while they're still in stock.
Leo: It seems like they're writing the end.
Iain: We'll see. You never really can trust Apple to say the end.
Jason: I'm waiting for the stinger at the end after the credits.
Jason: there's something after the credits.
Leo: You think Morgan Freeman's going to come on and say, he's going to have an eyepatch and
Jason: Yea, something like that.
Leo: I'm sorry, it's Samuel Jackson.
Jason: Sam Jackson.
Iain: I was going to say.
Leo: Sam Jackson. He'll have an eyepatch.
Iain: And monitors on his
Jason: I think they're going to come out with the Apple TV monitor with a GPU in it, something transformative.
Leo: And it's self-driving.
Jason: it's self-driving. You drive it anyway. You actually ride it like a hoverboard.
Leo: What if they had a car with a TV in it.
Jason: Well that's why everybody's doing the self-driving cars.
Iain: Yea but unfortunately, you come back to the Euros, you can't have a car with a TV in it.
Leo: You can't?
Iain: No, because it distracts from
Leo: You can in England.
Iain: If the driver
Iain: Ok. Now
Leo: You have to drive on the left.
Iain: Understandably I've been suffering from Brex induced Tourette's. Ok, you can't drive a car and watch the TV at the same time. it's not doable without killing people. Ok, so wrapped up.
Leo: Let's take a break. Iain Thompson, it's great to have you from theregister.co.uk.
Iain: Always fun.
Leo: Always a pleasure. Love it. Did you bring your lovely wife?
Iain: She I think is in the back of the audience somewhere but if not I'm walking home, so.
Leo: Stand up and scream if you're here. She'd didn't come. You're on your own.
Iain: Say Brexit.
Leo: Say Brexit. She's sleeping. She's finally getting a little sleep after that long week.
Iain: I'm going to have to suckle home, right? She's got the car.
Leo: Also...she says, "I'm out of here." Also with us, Jason Calacanis from Calacanis.com and
Leo: @Jason. And do you want to say, aren't you still doing that thing?
Jason: Inside.com? Yea.
Jason: Inside.com. We're doing email newsletters in verse.
Leo: it's a newsletter now. Yea.
Jason: Yea what we found was nobody ever uses their news apps so we've got over a quarter a million people, half a million people to download it and then .5% would use it every day. It was really brutal.
Leo: That's straight out of Silicon Valley.
Jason: Well if we spend more money, we're just going to burn through all the cash we have. So then we took the same people who registered and we email them the top like 10%. They open the email 40-50%. Like known email rate. So it's the same content and now we're getting this thing. So now we do Inside VR, Inside EVs and we're doing Inside Security. So we're just doing a series of newsletters twice a week. Go check out inside.com.
Leo: That's smart. And you have pinpointed the topics that you think will be the hot ones.
Jason: Yea, Inside AI. Yea, basically remember the trade show, the trade magazine business? I'm just going to recreate that.
Leo: it's brilliant.
Jason: So I'llsee how many...in email because 95 cents of every dollar we spend goes into the content.
Leo: Oh, that's beautiful. there's no print.
Jason: there's no print and there's no
Leo: No trucks.
Jason: Apps. So we were spending
Leo: You put ads in it?
Jason: And we put ads in it, exactly.
Leo: That's the revenue?
Jason: That's the revenue model. Just put an ad in it. But I'm just, you know I don't need to run
Leo: What is Kevin Rose doing?
Jason: He's doing a company called
Leo: I know he's Digg but he's got a newsletter, a monthly newsletter.
Jason: He does, once a week, once a month.
Leo: Is that the same idea?
Jason: Yea, I mean here's the thing about email. there's some weird thing that occurred. One, we figured out spam. Right like spam got solved. You don't feel spam. Like you open your email box
Leo: Thanks to Gmail by the way.
Jason: Thanks to Gmail. Then all corporate communications kind of bounced out of your inbox because of HipChat and other services by Atlassian, a great company. We got you, brother. And then, you know, social networks took all photos and private communication, or a large percentage out of email. So then email became all of a sudden, this is the important stuff. And a great content delivery mechanism. So we're really leaning into it. I think it's going to work in a major way.
Leo: Interesting. He's at journal.email. By the way, how did he get the .email because I've been trying to get .email.
Jason: I didn't know that was out yet.
Leo: Apparently it's out for him. He must know somebody. But I guess it's the same idea.
Jason: Well if you
Leo: And you build a community, right?
Jason: Yes and here's the thing. Journalism, we talk about journalism being broken. What I love about the email model is journalists on most publications, BuzzFeeds, Business Insiders, whatever, Gawker, they're trying to get people to click on social media. So it drives the editorial in a certain very nasty, disturbing, bizarre, untrue way.
Leo: Very bad.
Iain: Well particularly the research you saw this week that of the articles forwarded on social media, less than half of them are read.
Jason: Of course, right. These people that retweet, they're like I like that sentiment. Boom. I'm outraged. Then with email, what is the writer's motivation? To not have you unsubscribe or hit the reply key and tell you this is stupid or wrong.
Jason: So when you think about journalist's behavior at these other publications, they're driven to link bait. At my publication and my publishing house, they're driven to not have people unsubscribe which means they're driven to do high quality journalism again. So I'm like an old journalist publisher and I just want to get one more swing at the bat and build one more great publishing house, one more great Engadget.
Leo: Oh, how interesting. I love it.
Jason: One more great print magazine where I get it right, and journalism is saved and quality again. I feel like I got one more swing at the bat. It doesn't mean I'llsucceed but I think there's something there.
Leo: Like Medium. I'm just looking. Kevin doesn't put ads in it. I think it really is for him. it's about building community, right, and he's got a podcast so he promotes that.
Jason: Yea, he's got a voice. He wants people to understand what he's thinking, have a voice. And he doesn't have to link bait. He doesn't have to trick you to opt it in. there's no trickery.
Iain: 10 reasons why Apple is going down. You won't believe number 8. That's just
Jason: what's in every journalist's mind is am I going to get fired for not getting enough traffic? And in some publications, they're actually putting targets for people. And so
Iain: The journalists are actually paid based on
Jason: Gawker did that for a while.
Leo: You actually get paid based on traffic.
Iain: Based on traffic which is just a recipe for people just writing useless click bait.
Leo: No wonder it's all crap. That really explains it, right?
Jason: The more misleading, the greater the chance is you'll get your bonus.
Leo: Funny thing is, I'm concerned when I lose my voice, right? Because I don't need a voice. I have a voice. But when I'lllose my voice I'l
Jason: We're building a Leo Laporte AI. You're never going to die.
Leo: I think it can happen. I think we now have, after 10 years, after 40 years of broadcasting, 10 years of TWiT, we have enough clicks, enough sound, enough sound bites we can assemble anything. I actually am not completely joking.
Jason: You could.
Leo: I'm not completely joking. I believe that there's enough words with enough inflections and styles.
Jason: They brought back Tupac.
Leo: They brought back Tupac.
Jason: They can bring back Leo.
Leo: it's my dream. I want to be
Jason: You could give the eulogy at your own funeral.
Iain: That would be weird.
Leo: I'd like to sing a song (laughing).
Jason: Dearly beloved, we're here today to bury me. I just would like
Leo: Isn't that the plot of Prometheus Inbound, he's at his own
Jason: By the way, my cousin and my uncles, I'd like to say if you...you could literally just go and just have your revenge at your funeral. And by the way, where are all my friends?
Leo: it's called the reading of the will. I think everybody does that.
Iain: If you truly loved me, stand up and drop trow.
Leo: I can see you.
Jason: what's in the box?
Leo: Well look at this. This is cool.
Jason: what's in the box?
Leo: it's actually a drinking glass.
Jason: There you go.
Leo: But before you get the drinking glass you might want to look at the Automatic inside. You know about Automatic, right? Now you can't use this with a Tesla, right?
Jason: Yea you can. Every car is required to have one since 1999 or something.
Leo: Now one of the things this does of course is tell you gas mileage, how much you paid. I love this. How much your trip cost.
Jason: Where the car is when the kids are driving it.
Leo: Where the car is. So you know, a lot of people I think they go to Costco to get that giant bag of chips and save 58 cents, but then the Automatic says and by the way, the gas cost you a buck fifty. Now you know maybe that's not the best, most economical way to do it. This is fascinating. Now I guess you wouldn't get gas mileage information on a Tesla. I'm glad to know. I can take this to my Tesla.
Jason: You could plug it in, yea. All of them have to have that. Onboard diagnostics.
Leo: Since 1996 every car in America has the OBD2 port. You have it. If you've never seen it, you probably haven't because no one notices. it's in the dark where your knees are underneath the steering wheel.
Jason: Yea, 2 seconds.
Leo: You plug it in. You put the app on your iPhone or your Android device. You use Bluetooth to bond. I think it's Bluetooth LE. it's very easy to pair it. Now all of a sudden you get an engine check light? Automatic tells you what it means. In fact, it will tell you not only what it means, but where the nearest repair shop is which is awesome. You can keep track of your fuel mileage. You can set custom low fuel warnings. You can even ask your Amazon Echo how much gas is left in the tank. Now see I would like to do that with the Tesla. How much battery? I guess I can do that with a Tesla.
Jason: Fitbit for your car.
Leo: it's Fitbit for your car. You get, if you've got a teen, it will tell you what your teen's driving stats are. On the Android device, Automatic will set your Android phone to do not disturb and disable the keyboard if you set it up. You don't have to do this by the way, but if you've got a teen driver you will want to do this.
Iain: I was thinking actually, I know of a similar system which is being used to
Leo: This has
Iain: If she can actually get around this without me finding out
Leo: This has geo fencing. You know if...you can set a geo fence and say if the teen drives outside of this area, I want an email, I want a text message. Automatic of course has 24/7 crash response so that makes you feel good too. The dashboard web app gives you all sorts of information. Let's you export trips. But I'm using it with If This Then That. So every time I turn off the key in the ignition, If This Then That sends a summary, including a map and gas mileage and everything, of every trip in Evernote. So Evernote knows every trip I take. It works with your Nest so you can set it so that your Nest turns on the heat when you arrive. Your mechanic, FreshBooks, you can keep track of business mileage? It will do that for you in FreshBooks or Expensify.
Jason: If you lose your car.
Leo: You never lose your car and I actually had-
Jason: You know where you parked.
Leo: I have used this.
Jason: A Disneyland feature.
Leo: I went somewhere. I went out of town, I don't want to say where. I was out of town, I didn't know where I was. I was just looking around, looky-looing around and I went, 'Oh crap. Where did I park?' And I had no idea where I was. Launched the Automatic App and it said you're parked here and it even gave me the way to get home. Now normally this is $99.95. The software's free and there's no monthly subscription by the way. When you use our special offer code TWIT you're going to save 20%. I love this thing.Automatic.com/TWIT. TWIT offer code saves you 20%. It is fantastic. And you think I might be joking but in fact when you take the Automatic of its specially designed packaging, you actually do in fact have a travel cup (laughing). I'm just saying. I don't know if that's going to push you over the top if you're reluctant. Maybe you're thinking, 'Gosh, if only I got a travel cup, maybe I would buy that.' Well you do. Automatic.com/TWIT. don't forget the offer code to get 20%.
Iain: This is cool. it's the country way you can drive through Margherita so you
Leo: Can you?
Iain: Apparently so in some states you can get drive through alcohol which is just
Leo: That's crazy.
Jason: Stop that. That's a skit. That's not true.
Iain: I hope so, but.
Jason: Actually think about this. If we do get self-driving cars in this lifetime, you're going to get a lot of drunk drivers.
Iain: Oh, yea.
Jason: Drunk riders.
Iain: Oh yea, absolutely.
Leo: Well that's what Uber's for.
Jason: Well I mean, in LA it did revitalize the nightlife because people in LA would not drink because they were rightfully concerned about.
Iain: No, exactly.
Leo: What do you think, do you think this is a watershed moment? CSPAN covering the sit-in at the house. But now CSPAN doesn't own the cameras. Congress owns the cameras. And the rules are we turn off the cameras when we adjourn. Bu the sit-in continued past adjournment. Cameras go off, CSPAN cannot cover it. However, I want to say there's some members of the House that are technologically savvy but in fact they asked their staffers and their staffers showed them how to use Periscope.
Iain: Young person, show me how to use this technology.
Leo: And Facebook Live and they broadcast. Periscope kind of went down but Facebook Live continued. And CSPA found out about it and picked it up and continued the broadcast.
Iain: Yea, this is a classic example of new technology subverting.
Jason: it's just amazing that the GPUs in these phones have gotten so good and the LTE network has gotten so good.
Leo: You can stream live. I mean we used to spend a lot of money one equipment so we could stream live. In fact before us
Jason: And you'd stream badly.
Leo: Yea. It was crap. Before...remember Dan Rather at the 1968 convention with a backpack?
Jason: You with a backpack at South by Southwest.
Leo: I was still wearing a backpack.
Jason: That was 10 years ago.
Leo: We have made great strides and now this is all you need to broadcast anywhere.
Jason: I'm seeing more and more apps. I got pitched this week on two different apps that are basically using this as a studio where not only does it have obviously the bandwidth to do it properly, but they have a teleprompter so you look in your phone's camera and it's running a teleprompter so you can do your news report and then it sends it up and you can either do it live or you can send up the stream. And you have the teleprompter, you have people asking you questions. So this is going to become a thing where you know news reporters are going to have this and they're just going to speak into it.
Leo: I've ordered this and I don't know why it's taking so long. Livestream is selling a camera for Facebook Live. what's interesting about this camera, it looks like a plain old webcam, right? it's got array mic, not just a regular mic. But it has a 4K sensor. And so what you can do is split the 4K up into 4 1080p streams. So you actually stream from 1080p. You're not going to stream 4K. But you can switch cameras in effect by pointing it with, you use your phone to aim it. You touch where you want it to be but it also has face recognition so it will follow you. So if you're walking around, so you're going to get a subset of the total stream.
Jason: That's interesting.
Leo: Isn't that interesting?
Jason: Yea. These 3D cameras are going to be able to do it as well. I was literally at my daughter's little graduation step up ceremony and for the first time I saw like you know, the Robert Scoble of the event. Like somebody with a stick and on the top of the stick was the 360 camera. And I just thought, 'Wow. Now I'm having my picture taken without knowing it.
Leo: That's what's really unusual.
Jason: And I was like I kind of like, I don't really care but I'm just thinking.
Leo: it's not aimed at you.
Jason: Oh, they're not aiming the camera at me. But I'm having a video of me created the whole time. I'm under surveillance at the thing. So if I'm picking my nose or checking my phone or whatever
Leo: You're always on.
Jason: You're now being recorded 24/7 because some dope's got this thing on a stick.
Leo: They used one of these cameras at the Presidential Debate, one of the Republican debates and I used my Gear VR to tune in to watch. And they had many cameras but the one they started with was placed in the back and it was sitting next to a camera man, it was overlooking the audience. I'm sitting here, I'm watching the camera man literally pick his nose, chew some gum because he doesn't realize
Jason: He has no idea he's on camera.
Leo: I'm on camera. I'm looking down here. there's a guy sitting in his seat. He's on his phone. I can read what he's looking at on his phone. I'm thinking, 'You know ,you're being streamed nationwide.
Jason: No idea.
Iain: it's like people having the crafty ball scratch or you know, the sort of under the armpit thing and
Jason: I was going to bring it up earlier
Iain: The very crafty ball scratch?
Jason: it's a very interesting technique you have, Iain. I can see it perfectly from here. The rest of the audience? They have no idea.
Iain: it's an advanced technique.
Leo: If only that could be the title of the show, I would die happy.
Leo: Ladies and gentlemen, this would be a good time to wrap things up. there's so much more to talk about including the Rolls Royce remote control robo-ships. But let's table it for the next time.
Jason: Hour 3, hour 3.
Leo: Yea, this was a lot of fun.
Jason: A lot of show. It was a lot of show.
Leo: So much fun. Thank you. Well we did kind of go off script a little bit at the beginning and talk about Brexit but we had Iain and I thought it was great to have you and your
Iain: No, I appreciate you for letting me get my PTSD out of the way, you know, and we will deal with this. We are stronger than this.
Leo: Yes. We will fight them on the oceans. We will fight them on the beaches.
Iain: Did you ever hear Churchill's follow-up to that?
Iain: Because he gave this great speech. We will fight them and we will fight and we will never surrender.
Leo: Never surrender.
Iain: And he sat down next to his home secretary in Parliament and just as an aside to him say, 'We'll fight them with broken bottles because that's all we're going to have left by the end of that.
Leo: (laughing) Is that true?
Iain: Ok, it's from Churchill so its...he made up so much that is was, yea.
Jason: My prediction is, they roll it back.
Jason: I think it's just, I think there's going to be some sort of like realization where the people who voted who were like, 'I was doing a burn it down vote, didn't realize it was going to get burnt down.' They're going to repeal it.
Iain: The only way they can do that is if they hold a new general election which is going to be very difficult to do because they changed the rules in 2011. So
Leo: In fact, even though Cameron stepped down, that is not a call for an election. He's just going to be replaced as the head of his party.
Iain: He will be replaced as the head of his party and then become Prime Minister. So the...under the rules
Leo: Could be Boris Johnson which we mentioned which is
Iain: It looks like...no, I can't say that on air (laughing).
Leo: But couldn't Parliament call for an election?
Iain: Ok, back in the day, before they changed the rules in 2011, either the Prime Minster could say, 'Right, we're calling an election.' And go to the Prowess and say, 'Excuse me, Madam, could we hold an election?' Or the majority of MPs could vote to pass a motion of confidence and dissolve Parliament. However the rule change is now ... of MPs have to vote on that.
Leo: Or 5 years, whichever comes first.
Iain: Yea, or 5 years in which case the country might as well be burning down because 3 years from now when the next election scheduled
Leo: So the same party's in power, they're just going to pick a different head of the party.
Iain: They pick a different head of the party. And if they went to a vote of no confidence, then it would probably fail because enough conservative parties would have to vote against their own government and would then get deselected by their own local parties. So I hope you're right. I really hope you're right.
Leo: So this petition is kind of meaningless.
Iain: Oh, the petition's totally meaningless. The petition was, I've seen a number of reports on this. The petition was apparently started by Leave before the election.
Leo: Because he thought he was going to lose.
Iain: Because he thought he was going to lose. And then it garnered like 20 signatures or something. And then after the election, somebody saw this and thought, 'Well that's a good idea. I'llsign my name to this. It's never going to happen. You know, it's...they will have to roll it back some way but I just don't understand how they can do it under the current system.
Jason: Strange days.
Leo: Strange days indeed. I know you all want to go home and watch the season ending Game of Thrones.
Jason: That was last week. That was the drop the microphone episode. Oh my God.
Leo: Wow. Wow, huh? The battle of the bastards?
Jason: I just don't understand how you kill the Khaleesi, it's a favorite episode...
Iain: Spoiler alert, spoiler alert!
Jason: Oh, I'm sorry.
Jason: That's my standard joke. I did in at the poker game.
Leo: That's so mean.
Jason: Like how do you kill Khaleesi and the Dragos in one episode?
Leo: You can't kill her, she's the whole thing, right.
Jason: Everybody loves that character.
Leo: The problem is, it's completely believable because George R.R. Martin will kill anybody.
Jason: Yea. If you think this ends well, you have not been paying attention.
Iain: Have you seen the re-dub they've done of the battle with Leroy Jenkins?
Jason: Leroy, Leroy Jenkins.
Leo: Ok, so...
Jason: Spoiler alert.
Iain: Leeroy Jenkins is amazing.
Leo: If you haven't seen last week's Game of Thrones tune out now. But I think it would be appropriate to end with Leeroy and the...
Jason: I haven't seen it.
Leo: I haven't either. I remember seeing it and I didn't watch it because I hadn't watched the...
Jason: You can literally watch the Leeroy Jenkins every year. We should like have Leeroy Jenkins Day. There should be a Leeroy Jenkins day for people who are like Leeroy Jenkins.
Iain: I can quote huge sections of that whole thing because I've watched it too often.
Leo: For those who don't know, Leeroy Jenkins is a character in World of Warcraft, a made up character who is, who will go on raiding parties with you but inevitably just goes, whatever the plan is, charging into the fray. And that's the kind of guy you want to work on your team. So ladies and gentlemen, thank you for joining us. We hope you'll come back next Saturday, or sorry, Sunday at 3:00 PM Pacific, 6:00 PM Eastern time.
Male Voice: 32.33
Iain: Run the numbers on this please.
Leo: 2200 UTC.
Male Voice: Ready boys? Let's do this. Leeroy!
Jason: (Laughing) yes, yes.
Leo: Another TWiT is in the can. Bye-bye everybody!