This Week in Tech 601
Leo Laporte: It's time for TWiT, This Week in Tech! We have a great, in-studio panel. Jason Hiner is here, Mike Elgan, and Liz Gannes is back. We're going to talk about the latest tech news, including a good story about Fiber, and I want to give credit for our show title to Mike Maznick of Tech Dirt. We'll explain what Fiber to the Press Release means, we'll also talk about Apple, augmented reality, maybe a little bit more sober look at that from our panel this week. It's all coming up next, on TWiT.
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This is TWiT, This Week in Tech, episode 601, recorded Sunday, February 12, 2017.
Fiber to the Press Release
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It's time for TWiT, This Week in Tech, the show where we cover the week's tech news. I'm so excited today! Not only do we have fancy eyewear for the show because Valentine's day is Tuesday, but we have an all-in-studio panel. When we have an all in studio panel, I think the show is more fun. Starting with Jason Hiner from Tech Republic and CBS Interactive. Hey, Jason!
Jason Hiner: I'm here. I can take these with me, right?
Leo: They're yours to keep.
Liz Gannes: These are highly non-functional.
Leo: That voice is somebody we haven't had on in ages. I'm so glad to have Liz Gannes back.
Leo: Put them on, you're wearing the pink shirt. That's much better. Liz is now, formerly at Recode. You've had a baby since I saw you last. How old is she?
Liz: Almost a year.
Leo: Wow. Did a journalism fellowship at Stanford...
Jason: The baby?
Liz: She came to some classes. She asked Condoleezza Rice a couple questions.
Leo: Ladies love the name Condoleezza. And now is coincidentally at a site called 60DB at 60.db.co and I think it was Matthew Ingram who said you got to try 60DB. I don't know if he knew you were there. He didn't mention you, and I was listening to it and there was Liz Gannes doing interviews. So I was really pleased. We've plugged this a couple times. I think it's a great app; a great website. More importantly for me, it's an echo skill, and I...
Liz: Voice interface for life to get you news forever.
Leo: It's reintroducing the podcast in a way to the normal students who don't listen to podcasts.
Liz: Can I quickly describe what it is?
Leo: Let me introduce Mike, and I'll have you do that. Mike Elgan is also here. Elgan.com and becomingnomad.com.
Mike Elgan: Yes.
Leo: Still hasn't left the country.
Mike: I'm afraid I won't be able to get back in.
Leo: You have a beautiful granddaughter.
Mike: I'm going to Venice in April.
Leo: Why ever leave Venice?
Jason: Why does he have two pairs of glasses?
Mike: One is for this. Professional.
Leo: These are not only non-functional, they impair your vision. What's the point of these? Good to have you. Good luck in Venice. When I go to Venice, that beautiful Italian town that is floating, I think it must be hard to live here. Harder than living in Manhattan, you have to walk or take a boat everywhere, shopping must be murder. People who live in Venice must really want to live there.
Mike: Wait until they have self-driving gondolas. Totally different thing. It'll change everything.
Leo: So... tell us about 60db, Liz. To me, this is the next step in podcasting.
Liz: Podcasting is great, but there's all sorts of other ways you want to listen to audio and it doesn't have to be an hour long conversation between a couple people. That's just one way. I heard the stat in our pitch deck the other day, terrestrial radio has 99 more weekly active users than Facebook. So there is something bigger than Facebook, and it's people listening to stuff. Stevie B is a personalized playlist of news, so instead of getting in your car and listening to radio technology that hasn't changed in forever, you turn into one channel; you're ten minutes late for their show... so what? This is just a personalized playlist of 3-7 minute clips, so it is edited for you.
Leo: It never stops.
Liz: Then you ask Alexa to start 60db again, and you keep on going with your channel.
Mike: I'm sorry to interrupt, Leo, but does it automatically customize itself?
Liz: It's like Tinder.
Leo: I can swipe?
Liz: You can say next. Another way to say it, our founders came from Netflix and NPR, so what is Netflix plus NPR? It is personalized radio.
Leo: There is an onboarding experience where you pick categories that you're interested in.
Liz: You get exposed to stuff you would never hear on the radio. I had a barbecue podcast the other day. This is awesome. I never heard this on the news. I'm more educated on sports and markets than I would normally be.
Leo: It's free. What's the monetization strategy? You put ads in there? You're doing unique content as well, right?
Liz: We don't have tis yet. How does Netflix make money? We're probably going to do that.
Leo: I would subscribe. TWiT bits show up on here. So here's quick hits, these are five to ten minutes, even shorter sometimes. Then in depth is longer.
Liz: WE do both. We're getting better at In depth. At first we were like people don't realize that short form is great, but it turned out that early adopters know about digital audio, so we have to be a good podcast app too. You don't want to switch apps just to listen to something longer. We're trying to give you both of those. We had a redesign go live on Saturday.
Jason: I was in, used my Twitter account, gave my email, picked three things. So yeah.
Leo: You can get on the app and put it in your car, you can listen on the app, and do it on your Echo.
Liz: Hopefully cars will have voice interfaces soon. Car technology is never as fast as you want it.
Mike: Not interacting with the app while I'm listening is really important to me. Usually I'm doing dishes...
Leo: Some of the inspiration for this is NPR. NPR had this insight with their app, you would say "listen," and it would play your NPR shows one after the other.
Liz: Which is great. We have a bit more variety though.
Jason: I use the NPR 1 app.
Liz: We're brand new, but I think it's good for being a 3 month old product.
Leo: You're working as a journalist for them. You're doing journalist...
Liz: thank you for letting me talk so much about what I'm doing. I'm helping places like The Atlantic or Wired, or Politico create more audio content. It fits into our feed because they write great stories, but not everyone wants to read stories. I also do some more original stuff, like I wanted to cover the AI versus humans poker tournament, so I found a reporter who went to that, I wanted to cover the hyper loop competition and I found a reporter that went to that.
Leo: That journalistic instinct is important to giving a full stack of stuff.
Jason: I like the idea of engaging other journalists in stuff and turning these into our audio stories. We've done, I've lost count of how many times we've started a podcast and it always peters out after a year or so, and we know it's a good way to engage the audience. I think there's a market there to engage with publishers and turn more of what they do into audio...
Leo: I kick myself that we didn't think of this. We have the skill to put together audio feeds, but there are a lot of people who say we want to do a show, you do, can we partner with you? This is a better way to do it. There's a monetization plan, the ability to put The Atlantic on the Radio has got to be valuable to them. They do have podcasts.
Liz: Reporters don't realize how easy it is to talk about their stuff. I call them five minutes after they finish the story, it's fresh in their head and they can tell me a few stats and I can edit in a few clips. I am a month into being an audio producer, I'm getting faster at it. I've been working some nights. Hopefully I'll get quick at it.
Leo: That's a big plug for 60db, but I think it's worth plugging. It doesn't really help us particularly. We far prefer you use our apps or listen on our website. But at least it's an introduction, people who have never heard TWiT can listen in and say oh. That's why we make TWiT bits. We make them and we put them on YouTube so that people can download something quick. With the three hour episode which we're about to do. We just spent half an hour on 60DB. Just kidding. Actually, I wanted to ask you, Mike, you wrote an article...
Mike: About Twitter? Computer World.
Leo: I just read that this morning. Twitter announced this week that they are going to... a couple things happened. Twitter had its financial results. Not great. They had 2 million new users in a three month period.
Mike: I contest that. I don't know how many of those are fake.
Leo: I bet half of those are spam or fake accounts. So a million? Maybe? Compare that to 83 million that Facebook got in the same quarter. They have done nothing... going back to their previous CEO, Dick Coslo who said it's on me, we haven't done a good job dealing with abuse, we've done a terrible job, we're going to do it better. Now you've got jack, the buyer Jack Dorsey. One of the founders not interested, nevertheless the board encouraged them to find a buyer. Nobody will buy it because no advertiser wants to be in an environment that you don't know what's going on.
Mike: You don't want to be sandwiched between two bits of hate speech.
Liz: Twitter has never been more relevant.
Mike: We need it desperately. I'm so afraid that they're going to fail and fail and sell it to some company that will strip it to parts and milk it for all it's worth, and it's going to be this lost opportunity.
Leo: That was the rumor, was that some hedge fund or investment group would buy it and do exactly that. What you really want is a journalistic entity to buy it, right?
Mike: My fantasy is that some well-meaning billionaire buys it as a pet project.
Leo: Jeff Bezos.
Mike: Well meaning, I said.
Leo: He's done a great job with the Washington Post. He deserves credit there.
Mike: He really does. He deserves respect for... but I want it to continue to be what it is minus the harassment. There's one thing they do that they refuse to change that is the whole problem. If you go to Facebook, Google+, Pinterest, Instagram... every social network except Twitter. If somebody replies to something you post, you can delete it. Twitter has refused to do that. If somebody puts hate speech as a reply to my thing, I can't do anything. I can't delete theirs.
Leo: But you can delete it from other sites.
Mike: That's why Twitter has a special reputation for harassment because you have to go to Twitter and say please remove this person, they're clearly a troll, the whole account is nothing except harassment. Every time you build an anti-harassment feature, they build a better harasser. so they figure out how to get around these things.
Leo: There's a technical issue with this. It's the same reason they don't add edit. The problem is with Twitter, once a tweet goes out, deleting it doesn't really delete it. There's third party programs, there's databases, there's people archiving Twitter all the time. Somebody should tell the US Government that. Once you put a tweet out, it's there. Permanently. They've announced some initiatives this week..
Leo: Tell us about the three initiatives.
Mike: They remove problematic results from search. If people are tweeting something that is harassment, hate speech, or low quality content, and you search for it, you can't find it. It won't show up in search. They base that on the wrong criteria. The criteria they us is if somebody's been blocked by a lot of people...
Leo: Humans are better at this than machines.
Mike: Understanding the nuances of language. But to the search point, this becomes a search of harassment. Lots of people have blocked you, Leo, now you're not going to show up in search results.
Leo: Because Twitter will interpret that signal.
Mike: It's a dumb signal. What would be better would be for everything to show up in search results and every tweet, every reply to your tweets has two buttons. Delete this reply for you. Nobody else can see it. It's like on Facebook, if somebody replies to something you post, you can delete it. It goes away.
Leo: It really does go away, because you don't have third party clients.
Mike: But even if it persists on third party clients...
Leo: Twitter would have to kill the API.
Mike: I don't know what percentage of people are getting on the app or the site or whatever. But that would be one thing. The other would be delete this reply and block the user. But, that's the secret sauce.
Leo: What they propose is to make it harder for people to make serial accounts. An abuser... I don't know how you do that. We have abusers who use spoofing and so forth. It's almost impossible to create a new email address. Spoofing an IP address...
Mike: Let's think about this. Let's say a janitor comes in here and uses your guest network to harass somebody, they shut down your IP address, nobody, no guest no employee can tweet or set up accounts. That's a problem. I don't know how they're going to do that.
Leo: Somehow they're going to identify people who have been suspended and stop them from creating new accounts. If they can do that, that would be helpful. In my opinion, that works most with people like Milo Yannapoulis, who wasn't anonymous. You could say Milo, you can't create a new account, but he can create an anonymous account, but not one under his own name.
Liz: The vast majority of trolling happens because you can do it anywhere and your reply shows up no matter what.
Mike: The simple solution to that is pseudo-anonymity where Twitter knows who you are, and then you can have any public name you want. They should have an option that says I don't want to hear from anybody who is anonymous.
Leo: We were told they were starting to do that. They apparently abandoned that. Mentioned removing from search results, they also say maybe they'll collapse or hide objectionable replies.
Mike: Which is a useless feature because it's the type of attitude that Twitter has already had. If someone, if there's low quality content, by the way there are search algorithms... their software is going to misfire on this, as it does on every other social network. On Google Plus, like ten percent of the things they hide are perfectly good content, and 13% of the garbage they allow. It's hard to do it well.
Leo: If Google can't do it, I doubt Twitter...
Mike: If they hide it from me and I un-hide it, it only affects what I see.
Leo: They always say if you complain about something, just mute them. Just block them. But that's not the problem, I care about other people seeing it.
Mike: I think the way to use social media is my profile on any social site should be a place where I start conversations and I cultivate conversations. I can also make sure that people don't derail those conversations. That's the problem of derailment. The posting where you throw a bunch of garbage, people having constructive political conversation and a bunch of haters coming in and screaming at everybody, the point of that is to make sure that nobody can have a conversation. You can just delete those people and keep the rational people and you can have a conversation...
Leo: In our chatroom, 6858 says just leave Twitter alone and people who don't like it can go to Facebook or some other service.
Jason: I think Mike's point is valid. There's a couple things to keep in mind. This happens to every social network, every community. Over time, it's almost like a law of nature that they get worse and communities reach this point where they get really bad.
Leo: Facebook hasn't.
Jason: You have to be you.
Leo: Real names policy makes a difference.
Jason: The thing that makes Twitter great--it's like when you fall in love with someone and you realize their best quality is also their worst quality-- it's the same thing with Twitter.
Leo: Interesting philosophy.
Jason: It's best quality is its openness. Evan Williams made this thing, and he went to bat very early on.
Leo: The free speech wing of the free speech party.
Jason: He went to bat for the openness of this platform early on. Its openness is still its strength, and it's also its weakness. The one thing that has the best chance of solving this, is the fact that they want to, if they follow through with opening it up to the people who want to get verified, and they give precedence to those...
Leo: Real names policy.
Liz: Expand the notion of verification to public figures who are willing to be themselves. I feel like the better comparison is Reddit. Reddit is Twitter in discussion board form.
Leo: They're struggling big time.
Liz: Absolutely. Reputation matters then, because it's a continuous discussion.
Leo: They have karma. Voting. The voting works quite well to hide the junk, unless you go to a sub Reddit around junk, and then nobody down votes it, because it's what we're here for.
Mike: And on Reddit, you can pick. You can go to the trolls, but it's voluntary. The problem with Twitter is everything is wide open. The mistake that Jack makes is that the problematic tweets are problematic because they stifle free speech. Harassing people, silencing women, doing all those things that those haters do, that's actually ending free speech, not promoting it. Allowing somebody to derail conversations when people are trying to have constructive conversation does not promote free speech. That's why there is no substitute for letting people choose themselves. If I delete somebody's comment, he wants to go dis me on their profile or on somebody else's comment thread, great. That's fine. I'm trying to have a good conversation here.
Jason: That's the problem with the platform is that people hijack the conversation.
Leo: I also wonder whether you should really be having conversations on Twitter. It's a terrible platform for conversation. Liz, why should we save Twitter?
Liz: I think that we're having this conversation and it's great in the world we live in where Donald Trump hasn't been mentioned, but Donald Trump needs to be mentioned. This is where the discourse of our world is happening.
Leo: WE should save it for the President? WRONG.
Liz: Did you just do Jimmy Fallon does an impression of Alec Baldwin doing an impression of Donald Trump?
Leo: All my impressions are people doing impressions. It's easier.
Liz: Maybe their monetization model can be all the people in the world who have set up mobile notifications for whenever Donald Trump tweets to find out if their world is falling apart.
Leo: It's kind of important, actually. You're right. What's interesting is every president, going back to FDR, has wanted a way to address the electorate. FDR did fireside chats. The brand new medium of radio. Presidents still do radio addresses. I don't know if Trump has done that, but up until Trump everybody was. Everyone wants to find a way to talk to the people directly. This is... he's a master of this medium. Arguably one of the reasons he got elected is his mastery of Twitter.
Mike: It's a two edged sword, though. One of the biggest things I've written was for Recode. How to get into the filter bubble of people who are fans of Trump. If you can post a reply to his Tweet within five seconds, his fans will see it. This is a powerful thing. When the President posts something he has direct access to 20 million people, and those people see the resistance come flooding in. It's a double edged sword for him. Every post he has is followed by thousands of people slamming and criticizing him.
Leo: When you look at.... I assume this is not @POTUS, this is @REALdonaldtrump that you're talking about.
Mike: When he wasn't President, yeah.
Leo: If you look at tweets or tweets and replies, which I'm not going to do, it's... is that a valuable discussion?
Mike: I don't think it's a valuable discussion, but the whole Trump phenomenon is separate from the issue of harassment in general. The thing that concerns me about harassment is when people make the decision where they're trying to have a voice and they get to the point where they're like Twitter is so toxic, I'll just stop talking in public.
Leo: That's what I do.
Mike: Your voice is silenced.
Leo: That's fine. I'm the last person you'd say anything about silenced.
Mike: But if you didn't have a huge podcast...
Leo: Is Twitter a place people should go to have their voice heard?
Jason: I think it is more of a broadcast or narrow cast medium that it is a conversational...
Leo: Even if you tweet though, the chances are, however many followers you have only a fraction of them are going to see that Tweet. Right?
Mike: It's a mixed bag. Tanya was telling me earlier you suddenly decided you liked Google plus, which I find, I'm totally incredulous about that.
Leo: Maybe it's just me, but my Google Plus has gotten great now everybody left. It used to be the place...
Mike: It's a harassment free zone.
Leo: Partly because even though they no longer have a real names policy, it's built into it in a way that it still has that.
Jason: If you're in tech, it's a great place.
Leo: That's how I use Reddit. I use Reddit because I follow the Reddit tech stories. Reddit is a great tech feed for me. I don't see all that other stuff, thank God. But if I go to Reddit, I'll learn about my Grandmother's homemade quilt, the ones I follow tend to be... I think Reddit is surfacing that as something I'm not following. This is just the generic... Reddit is very careful on this front page not to show anything controversial.
Mike: Reddit is fantastic.
Leo: I wouldn't want my Mom to go to Reddit. Too easy to see stuff you wish you hadn't. Isn't it?
Mike: It's not as bad as Twitter though.
Leo: The best place for me, for geeks, hacker news. I only see things I really am interested in.
Jason: It's the command line of news.
Leo: That just shows you that social networks may be our best when they're not universal. When they're... my little corner of the world. Twitter succeeds because it is... is it universal?
Mike: It's primarily media and journalists. It's an echo chamber, for sure, but it's very culturally relevant for that reason. Culturally relevant people and high prominent people, TV shows, all those people use Twitter and have big accounts. Singers and actors and so on. If you look at the top 100, it's 80% Beyonces and singers and so on.
Leo: It's kind of like watching TV and hoping for a high speed chase. It's most interesting when it goes off the rails. Like when Lady Gaga gets upset about her neighbor and starts tweeting crazy stuff. That's what you're hoping for.
Jason: Or watching celebrities troll each other. Hilary Clinton trolled Trump after the vote, Kellyann Conway trolling Hillary Clinton for that.
Liz: Trump has been President for three weeks, and Twitter has completely changed in three weeks. This conversation is in some ways dated. There's this weird thing going on where we're all talking about the same stuff at the same time. Maybe I'm deluding myself into believing that, but for the first time we're having a "national conversation" because whatever Trump did today, it's the most interesting and impactful thing we're dealing with.
Mike: He gets up in the morning and selects the political agenda for the day, and nobody can do anything about it.
Liz: There's no TV show that we're all going to watch. We're all watching this TV show.
Leo: My Facebook feed has become that way. It's become a newsfeed more than it used to be.
Jason: Tell me you're getting that hat, Leo.
Leo: I don't know why... this is my problem with Twitter is it's so contextless it is just.. I feel like I'm reading random bits of...
Liz: Is that a potato or an octopus?
Leo: An octopus on a top hat. It's from some guy I follow. He's a social media nitwit and he's written a book called Pam mastery and a crime novel called Butterfly stomp waltz. And a science fiction novel... wow. This guy is prolific, called hydrogen sleets. He likes punching Nazis. I don't know why I'm following him. I don't know how that happened. That's the other thing that happens with Twitter. You accumulate people for reasons you don't remember.
Jason: I have unfollow Friday. Every Friday I go in and I clear out.
Leo: Can you... this is the other thing that is problematic with Twitter. You used to be able to cultivate your feed and tilt it in the direction... I'm just going to follow journalists. Just follow... you can't do that anymore. Nobody sticks to the subject.
Mike: Can I share my philosophy on social media? I don't think social media is a good place to get content. At all. I like to use the old fashioned way, get some right leaning publications, and some left leaning, and some centrist publications, and you get those content, and then you post and engage with the people who reply to your post, and that's your social media. I don't think it's a good place to open yourself up to his firehose of drek that comes pouring in.
Leo: The best thing every one of you listening could do is get off social media period. You feel this lifting of a burden.
Mike: I saw a story today that said if you stop watching TV and stop using social media, you have enough time to read 1,000 books a year.
Mike: If you're an average American.
Leo: I've started to make that about cable news, because I realize.. I was listening to a great interview on a podcast of all things, Alec Baldwin's. He interviewed a well-known journalist who said I no longer watch cable news because it's not news. A 24 hour news cycle is all punditry and opinion. Your stress level, my blood pressure when I don't watch cable news or visit social media is much better.
Mike: Leo, I'm reading a book right now called Deep Work by Cal Newport. It's a few years old. Fantastic. IF you go to his Twitter feed, he has zero activity. He talks about the digital movement. It's done two simultaneously crazy things. It's made the value of deep work where you sit down and think without distraction far more valuable... there's also all this pressure on people to do shallow work. People used to do deep work like journalists. They're not being pressured by the organizations to go out and tweet all the time, which is shallow work. There's this huge opportunity for people to think deeply and do deep work because nobody is doing it and the value is through the work. The value of shallow work is low and getting lower all the time. You guys do long form stuff. Super valuable stuff. You can't do long form journalism well if you're checking Twitter every five seconds. You can't do it. Quiet room, serious thinking and digging, otherwise it doesn't work. I recommend...
Liz: They interviewed a guy who has ALS and has to type with his eyes, he was talking about how he feels he's been reborn as a thinker because he used to do so many things that are not possible to do at the speed he can do now so he can really engage in the world.
Leo: Handwriting would be another... I write about as slow as he can type, because my handwriting is so terrible. Stephen Levy, who is one of my favorite journalists, he says he's a slow news writer, which is like slow food. The new cooking thing. Let's take a break. I want to talk about IT PRo TV, and then we'll continue. Great panel here. Jason Hiner from Tech Republic and CBS Interactive. It's a pleasure to have you. Why are you out? Are you out for RSA?
Jason: Down here for RSA.
Leo: A lot of people in the studio audience too. Programmers, coders. Couple of guys from Codeblocks podcast, the big security conference in San Francisco. Always a fun time of year, as Mike Elgan pointed out, it's also beer week in San Francisco.
Mike: There are 180 breweries represented in restaurants throughout the city. So check out the beer week...
Leo: What is it about programmers and beer?
Mike: They're like journalists. They're a bunch of drunks.
Leo: Programmers like whiskey and beer, right? Liz Gaines is also here from 60DB.co, we were talking earlier, I love it. 60db.co. I want to hear more about your journalism fellowship, that sounds like a great thing. Did you have to apply for that?
Liz: Yeah. It's worth it. In this field where people are turning us away, laying people off ,buying people out, to have someone invested and allow you to live on a stipend for a year...
Leo: Who is the...
Liz: The Night Foundation.
Leo: Our great friend Jeff Jarvis who cohosts This Week in Google works at the townhouse of journalism.
Liz: Yeah. Then there's also the Nike Night guys. Everything in the world is..
Leo: Yours is the other Night.
Liz: It's confusing.
Leo: Wow. Our show to you today brought to you by IT Pro.tv, the guys are in studio, they're around somewhere. Tim and Don. The founders of IT Pro TV. They're also in town for the RSA conference. They cover on IT Pro TV. Here's a way you can get your coverage of RSA. A lot of interviews all week long at RSA. What is IT Pro TV? It's a really cool idea. They were fans of tech TV, they said somebody ought to do something like that for online IT training, for keeping your IT skills up, for learning, and that's why they created IT Pro TV. They have five studios in Gainesville, Florida. They have doing Monday through Friday, 9-5, video and do much like we do. They have chat rooms going on, but the subject matter is all stuff you need to know if you want to get the IT certifications or you want to keep up to date. They offer 2,000 hours of content. You can watch it on your Chrome cast, your Roku, your Amazon Fire TV, they have a great Apple TV app. Courses include things like certified information system, all the Comp TS, certified ethical hacker. That's one of my favorites. I want to be this when I grow up. Ethical hacking, version nine just went up. They have others, some of the best people in security teaching this. You can... you'd be guaranteed a job, if you knew this stuff. Upcoming classes, Pen testing, networking Plus, one of our detectives at the Petaluma police department said I'm now in charge of forensics, I need to use Wire Shark. ITProTV. I can't tell you the commercial customers. They don't want to tell everybody, but for some reasons the universities don't mind, the entire Harvard university department subscribes to IT Pro TV. So does MIT, so does UCSD. So does Stanford. Everybody knows this is the best way to keep those skills up to date. They have a low monthly subscription price, and because they started teaching people, they have an easy no hassle cancellation policy. I think even if you get the job, you're going to continue to become a member and continue to watch. Premium membership is 57 a month, or you get two months free if you subscribe for a year. But, we got a special deal. For a free, 7 day trial, so you can see exactly what it's like for a whole week. 30% off of the lifetime of your account, go to itpro.tv/twit. The code is twit30. 30% off the life of your account. Could be years and a free seven day trial, so you can see what it's like beforehand. By the way, ITProTV is in the process of introducing a new membership level, they're going to do it soon. Now is the time to sign up, you'll be guaranteed if you're a premium member. At the time, you'll be granted the highest membership level available. You'll be upgraded at the same price. itpro.tv/twit. Offer code twit30. We're talking high tech, we're talking the world of technology. I've just got a little parenthetical. I got the new Android wear watch. Isn't that lovely? By the way, not only is it ugly, it's uncomfortable as helk. This is the sport, it's huge. It doesn't stop at the watch. In the band, they put the antennae, so the band is rigid halfway down your wrist, which means it does feel like one of those work for low bracelets. You can't change the band. They've added some nice features. I can make phone calls from this; it has a SIM card and a phone number. My watch has a phone number. You look kind of dorky...
Mike: Why pay for one account on AT&T when you can pay for two?
Mike: Weren't electronics supposed to get smaller over time?
Jason: It's so much bigger than the Samsung. That's what I don't understand.
Leo: That does all of that.
Jason: The Gear S3 has a SIM card in it. It's half as thick as that.
Liz: Do you have to watch out to not twist the band too much?
Leo: You can feel the antennas go right down here. I don't know how fragile that is. I can't wait to stop wearing that watch. It does feel good when you take it off.
Jason: It's funny. When the whole smart watch thing started, I thought, "I quit wearing watches ten years ago." Or maybe not quite that long.
Leo: apple has trained us not to wear a watch...
Jason: Exactly. I'm still wearing the Apple Watch, one of the few people who is... the only reason I kept wearing it is because it's comfortable. The cheap band is really comfortable. They pitched this all wrong with smart watches. They pitch it like you're going to have a computer on your wrist. I think it's a slightly smarter FitBit.
Leo: Yeah. And a FitBit is just a slightly smarter pedometer. You're not making a lot of progress here.
Jason: The visuals for the exercise stuff are slightly better.
Leo: Circles works for me because I see other people's circles and it motivates me to get off my duff. The social network aspect of it is the only thing strong about the Apple Watch.
Jason: The only thing I use it for is the alerts. It's nice not to have to pull your phone out of your pocket. It makes it easier to ignore things. Then having the weather on it. That's all I use it for. I had a FitBit before. It's a slightly smarter FitBit.
Leo: The promise of these is you would take your phone out less often. What I find is the watch is so brief that I go oh. That notification, I better read that. Then I take my phone out. I doubly annoyed.
Mike: Someone asked me the time and I take my phone out and I'm like, oh yeah. I have a watch.
Jason: I ignore a lot more things, I will say.
Leo: I think even Apple did say that the watch had its biggest revenue quarter ever.
Liz: I saw a lot of people hopping on the late adopter train these past six months.
Leo: Since they don't give us numbers, it's not really a meaningful thing. It was our biggest quarter ever... did they sell twice as many?
Jason: I think the interesting thing with the Apple watch is some of the third party people that track it is now the number one vender, number two watch selling vender in the world. If you don't count FitBit.
Leo: Of the Smartwatches, the Apple Watch is better than the Android wear. I'm not even convinced the Apple watch is worth...
Mike: I have a stupid theory on why they're not selling so well, the theory is Apple fans see new stuff as crack/cocaine. They need a new hit. They're not buying a MacBook because the new Mac sucks.
Leo: I like it. It's their crack hit.
Jason: It's a good theory. There's not a whole lot to get excited about. The Mac has sold well. I'm using it. But it's mostly because of pent up demand. I do know a lot of people that were waiting, and they weren't thrilled with it. The touch bar... I don't use much of it. It's more annoying than it is helpful.
Jason: I think if introduced with more software, maybe there's some things that could be useful on it. Right now it's more annoying than useful to me. This is a lot of power in a very... 13. It's very similar to an air and it's a lot of power in a small laptop.
Mike: It's a great laptop, but so was the one that came out four years ago.
Mike: I like the little things. The Macsafe thing a lot.
Leo: I want everything to be Type Seed. Trey Radcliffe our good friend and stellar photographer wrote a blog post this week. Apple is dead to me. You got to remember, Trey is a Mac fanatic for his whole career. I am switching to Windows. I worry that this may be a trend among high end users.
Jason: My son does video editing and special effects and he does graphics, computer animation, had to... there's...
Leo: The MacPro is three years old now. This is what Trey got, I'm not sure he would have recommended this, but this is what he bought is an MSI, desktop replacement laptop for 4,599 dollars. Apples top out at 16 gigs of ram, if you're a photographer, that's a big deal. Raid, hard drives, with a terrabyte drive. It's got the invite a cardro, which is the design graphic designers use. It's not great for gaming, but a lot of power for graphics.
Jason: The funny thing when you go back and forth for Mac, I've seen a lot of people that have switched too, you remember how buggy Windows is... it drives me crazy. You throw all this power at it, a machine like this should scream, nothing should slow it down...
Leo: Until its first ransomware notice.
Jason: then it does weird Windows things. Things crash...
Leo: I see a lot of Mac people do this where he goes this isn't so bad. You were the editor of Windows..
Mike: I still have habits from Windows that bug me when I'm using a Mac. For example, when I do the command tab thing, if the Window is minimized, it doesn't maximize again, it drives me nuts. Little stuff like that really bugs me. If you're going to use Windows, reformat it every month.
Leo: You've got to love the surface studio, but it's a very niche product. We've a bunch of programmers in the studio. I love it for what I'm doing, but if you put it in its normal... this is no different than an iMac or any big screen...
Liz: Wheel of fortune is a good format for letters on a board.
Leo: Yeah. Tim Cook is traveling around Europe and gave an interview this week to the Independent in London. He thinks augmented reality is going to be as big a product category as the iPhone. I thought that was telling, because it's obvious if you've been watching Apple's results that they're looking for their next iPhone. The iPhone turned Apple from a little computer company to being the most valuable company in the world.
Liz: Doesn't that sound a little desperate?
Leo: he's doing what Apple does so well, which is--
Liz: You call it a hobby if you're not going to do it yet.
Leo: But what Apple does is they use these interviews to get people in the mindset. We talked about this last week with Robert Scoble. He's convinced that AR is in Apple's future. He feels... when he says something like that, it's not off hand. Tim and apple in general are calculated about what they say.
Jason: I did a piece on Facebook. I think Facebook is investing in this really heavily.
Leo: They bought Oculus Rift.
Jason: When they made the hire of Hugo Bara...
Leo: He was a great demonstrator for Android. Xiaomi might have been frustrating, he had to move to China. He's back to Facebook.
Jason: You notice that when Mark Zuckerberg introduced him, he said he's going to be running all our virtual reality stuff, including Oculus.
Jason: We've been hearing for a while that they're working really hard on AR.
Leo: The problem with Augmented reality is Zuck can't sneak up on you. I love that picture of Zuckerberg sneaking up on people wearing their Oculus Rifts.
Mike: The way Facebook thinks of the world is Oh my god, there are times when people aren't looking at their screens, so the little red thing that tells you new items...
Leo: We'll find out in April, that's the developer's conference. IF they're going to make a move into AR, this is where they'll make an announcement.
Jason: Think about their database of people, of companies, of places, of all those things. Then think about that feeding into AR.
Leo: I want to be walking around and I see Jason Hiner and I see your feed pop up, I know the name of your wife, your kids. I know an article about you... I'm reading it while I'm talking. The interesting thing I realized is for AR, we always think of the Hololens and Glasses and VR and stuff, but Apple's Airpods, we've talked about this, wearables, more than headphones. AR means that you're taking the world and augmenting it. Could it be audio? Could it be telling me in my ear that's Jason Hiner, you've known him for years...?
Mike: It will be audio, and possibly also video. But there are two tiny startups that have it right, and their ideas are going to be stolen from them by the big companies, one of them is called View Glasses. They're a kickstarter, there's no video element other than a blinking light, so if there's a blink that means Mom is trying to reach me or whatever, they have an app of course, the battery lasts three days, and this is...
Leo: This is Mike Elgan wearing Google glass. And that's somebody wearing a viser. This is the premise. They look like real glasses.
Mike: And they can be prescription, they can be sunglasses, they can be any glasses.
Leo: It's audio only.
Mike: It's audio only plus a blinking light. That audio is a killer feature, because we're entering into the realm of genuine AI virtual assistance. We're going to want to be chattering with them, one way is the Amazon Echo way where you have a device in every bathroom. The other way is it's always on you, you talk and you hear back, but it doesn't cover your ears and it doesn't have a battery life that dies in four hours. There's a high school student in the midwest who came out with another project that he is kickstarting, and I'm trying to remember the name of the product, but it's a thing that clips onto any glasses, and gives you access to sound hound, which is a great virtual system that is underrepresented. This kid, he's a senior in high school...
Leo: I did a search and I found student brings AR 15 rifle to high school.
Mike: KAI and smart glasses. I talked to this kid, he's a smart kid, he's about to go off to University, but the idea that he's got there...
Leo: This is a high school kid. He didn't make it, by the way. He's got $20,000 or $55,000, but he still has 30 days to go on this.
Liz: It's a dongle that you clip onto your glasses...
Mike: The only thing that's patented is it gives you sound hound through bone conduction.
Leo: I love that this is a high school kid.
Mike: It's like amazon Echo or Siri.
Leo: This doesn't work very well right now on the airpods, the airpods you double tap, in fact I'm really unhappy with the air pods, but after dropping almost every call I made with the air pods, I've given up on them. They're fine to listen to music.
Mike: Here' s my theory on Apple and Facebook, the best place to put something like Siri or Alexa is on glasses through bone conduction. That's the base line, that's a killer app, then if you can throw something onto the screen that is maybe a subtle cue of something like that, Scoble said Apple is working with Karl Zeis, Karl Zeis has great technology, we talked about on the show, even if there's no visuals at all, there's no camera at all...
Leo: Air pod capability but do it in the glasses... interesting.
Mike: Battery life lasts three days, you can do it in prescription glasses or sunglasses... and that's killer. That's what I think. I think these little startups do killer ideas, and the big companies come in and steal them.
Leo: I often wonder if a big company is positioned to take advantage of these disruptive new technologies. Doesn't it always come from the little guy?
Jason: It always comes from small teams. Pretty much every good innovation comes from a small team. A lot of times, it's a startup.
Leo: That's why Google does it, they're trying to make this environment... Apple does that too?
Jason: I talked to last year a lot with the guy who was on the iPhone Team. There was 25 of us.
Mike: What's shocking about this whole bone conduction idea for glasses: there is no new technology there. None. Bone conduction has been...
Liz: You have to strip away everything you think of as augmented reality to say you're not looking at the world and seeing something projected on it.
Mike: All the technology is in the cloud...
Leo: That's my point. When Tim Cook says augmented reality, think hololens, they've got the earbuds already, I could see them doing something like this.
Liz: What might first come to mind for me is Alexa in your ear or on your glasses. I wouldn't say Siri, because I don't find Siri helpful.
Leo: Siri's useless, yea. Here's someone who's taken on the HoloLens and turned it, put Portal on it. Wouldn't it be fun to play Portal in your living room, blow holes in your floor, drop companion cubes (laughing) through holes in your floor and out your ceiling. I love this. I don't know if this is real but this is an article on The Next Web. Portal for Microsoft HoloLens makes real life look great again. I don't know- look at it. Now, that's hard to do. The companion cube is rolling down real stairs. That's not easy. So this is Kenny W, who's an AR game maker and I guess he showed this on Reddit but I don't know if—oh, no, he was actually doing this on a HoloLens. Wow. Because it's in Unity 3D, Portal is in Unity 3D, I remember Microsoft saying all Unity apps can easily be ported to the HoloLens. Interesting.
Liz: I can't get that excited about throwing things down stairs.
Leo: Oh, come on. Come one. All right, we're going to take—
Liz: I was going to make a crack about men (laughing), how you like to throw things.
Leo: Well, what would be the perfect game for you, Liz Gannes? I mean what would you like to do in virtual reality?
Liz: Let me get back to you. That's a good question.
Leo: Do you ever play games?
Liz: I play a lot of Dots on my iPhone.
Leo: See, Dots would be great. Yea, my wife plays Dots like crazy, right? Isn't that what you're playing? No, she's laughing at me. I'm not playing Dots, I'm playing Bots. It's like Dots but they're square.
Liz: I actually like to play Dots while I'm listening to something that I want to be intellectually engaged in because it's like mind focus.
Leo: Yes, that's what she does. Because she's ADD so she does this and that's occupying that little corner of her brain that would be wandering. That's her squirrel.
Liz: Which is kind of the opposite of gaming, right? But like for me, it scratches an itch.
Jason: I kind of do that with Words with Friends. I like taking a lot of my social media time and I like putting it into Words with Friends.
Leo: That's not a bad thing to do. I see you pop up all the time. I'm afraid you would beat the pants off of me so I don't play with you. All right, we're going to talk more about tech with our great panel, Liz Gannes from 60db.co, from becomingnomad.com, the great Mike Elgan. We saw on the New Screen Savers on Saturday, played a little bit of that Keep Talking and Nobody Blows Up.
Mike: That was fun.
Leo: That was really fun.
Mike: So fun!
Leo: I think it might be more fun for us playing it than it is for the people at home watching it but I don't care. I don't care because it's a VR game, it's just a blast. And Jason Hiner from CBS Interactive.
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Jason: I've used them a couple times actually.
Leo: You used Rocket Mortgage?
Jason: Quicken Loans.
Leo: Oh, Quicken Loans, yea.
Jason: Yea, used them a couple times. I've done it a couple of times without them and a couple of times with them, but they're by far the most tech savvy of the mortgages.
Liz: How many houses do you buy?
Jason: (Laughing) Well, yea, from moving. One of those was a re-finance but yea.
Liz: You think he writes about tech. Not really.
Leo: No, apparently he's flipping houses.
Jason: I wish. I wish I was actually savvy on that.
Leo: Clayton Morris does that. He's become like this big house flipper guy.
Jason: Yea, it's interesting. His point is good that you know, lots of the financial markets go up and down but real estate has stayed the same. It's really been like that since the beginning in this country, you know? People used to say that they invested in real estate instead of cash because our cash wasn't really good at first. It was worth more than money.
Mike: Did you see the movie The Founder?
Mike: About Ray Kroc, the founder of McDonalds.
Jason: Oh, yea, yea.
Leo: It's so good.
Mike: It's so good. But there's a revelatory moment where he's sort of working for the McDonalds brothers and he has no power at all.
Leo: He was a milkshake mixer salesman.
Mike: And so he got—he talked them into allowing him to run a franchise.
Liz: I want a milkshake mixer.
Leo: Everyone should have one.
Mike: He had this franchising business so he had no power. He was making no money. He was totally failing. And then some sharp kid came in and he hired him. And he's like, "You know, you're in the wrong business. What you've got to do is buy the land and then lease it to the franchisees." And the next thing you know, the McDonalds brothers, what they owned was one hamburger shop and he owed 400 of them. And he started telling them what to do and you know, it's a great movie. You know, spoiler alert.
Leo: That was my first job in high school was at McDonalds. I worked at McDonalds for years and it was actually a great first job. They taught me that it's ok to work. You can't, like they said, "What are you doing sitting around? Wipe down something. Don't just sit around. You're always doing something." It was actually a—and it was fun.
Jason: We wrote about that in Follow the Geeks.
Leo: You did.
Jason: Yes. The McDonalds story is in there.
Leo: Plug- I know, I'm bad. I'm getting old and repeating my stories. In fact, stop me. Just read Follow the Geeks, you'll know everything I'm going to say for the next 3 years. Thank you for writing that. That was fun. Is that book still out?
Jason: Absolutely. Yea, it's doing great. It's Audible, Kindle and paper.
Leo: Oh, good.
Mike: Did you do the Audible?
Jason: I did do the Audible.
Liz: I only listen to books where the author reads them.
Jason: Yea, it's fun.
Leo: That's a mixed blessing.
Jason: It can be.
Leo: Some authors should not read. But you, you've got a lot of on-air experience.
Liz: Well, with like a memoir, it's really great to hear it in their voice.
Leo: No, if it's a performer—
Liz: Actually I was like, there's this whole school of books of like female comedians who write memoirs. Well, they're too young to write memoirs. But I just listened to Anna Kendrick's and she's done like a lot in her life, a lot more than me. But like she's early in her career. And she was a fantastic narrator. Like her voice acting is just like so—
Jason: Several people I've heard said that.
Liz: Oh, really? I just loved it.
Mike: She started out on Broadway or something, didn't she?
Liz: Yea, she did. And so—absolutely. And she talks about that in her memoir because that's her life. But she, I was really surprised versus like, I don't know, some other one's like Amy Poehler's I found like eh. But Anna Kendrick I was really into.
Leo: Daniel Suarez has a new book coming out. You know, he did Freedom TM and oh, we just love his stuff. And he has—he does not read his own books on Audible but he's got a guy who reads all of his books who's fantastic. And Daniel, no disrespect, one of my favorite writers and I can't wait to interview him on Triangulation about this new book, but I'm glad he doesn't read them (laughing). He brought his narrator in the last time we interviewed him. He brought the guy who reads his books on Audible and there was something magical. He sat down. Go back and look at that one.
Liz: That's kind of cool. I feel like it's a person locked in a sound proof closet.
Leo: Well it is for weeks at a time.
Liz: And they get to come up to the level of the author. Cool.
Leo: But he was sitting there and I said, "Well read some." And you're transported immediately. Oh. You hear the voice, you hear the sound, you're in the middle of the novel. And they guy is such a good actor, a good reader. And this is not an Audible ad. Somehow we did an Audible ad without doing one, without being paid but a good reader can really make a difference.
Jason: Yea, the Audible one has been, I think because there's so many people that were involved in podcasting in my book in Follow the Geeks. It's by far—the Audible version has been the most popular.
Leo: Oh, yea. I believe it.
Liz: Do you voice the whole thing or did you get people to come on and do their parts?
Jason: No, I read the whole thing. Actually Om is in it and actually you're in the chapter on Om because they talk about the early—
Leo: Om Malik.
Liz: He likes to talk about the Starbucks, is that it?
Liz: Yea, it's like your McDonalds story. No, it was formative.
Leo: Did Om work at Starbucks?
Liz: No, that was our office.
Leo: He was at a Starbucks when he started Gigaom.
Jason: They made him employee of the month.
Leo: Did they really?
Jason: He was really proud of that, the fact that he got that.
Liz: Yea, on Battery and Clay in San Francisco.
Leo: That is so funny.
Mike: You got to meet Ronald McDonald. It was a big moment.
Liz: Not the other one across the street, but in that neighborhoods.
Leo: There is a Hamburger U you know. The Hamburger University. When I was—you know, I'm working at McDonalds in high school. I didn't tell you this part. And I had to really make the decision, Yale University or Hamburger U and I wasn't sure which way to go. And I finally went with Yale. And that's when I stopped working at McDonalds. They said you can't come back. You don't want to work here. You don't want to be a manger. I said, no, I have higher aspirations. Little did I know it was as a podcaster. Hashtags. Did you watch the Super Bowl last Sunday? We ran home after the show and I got the 2nd half and we have a number of people in the studio from Atlanta. I'm sorry. But what a game, right?
Jason: Atlanta played great.
Leo: Atlanta played great right up until they didn't. And then—
Jason: They were really only, I mean at 3 different points they were one play away from closing the game, closing it out.
Leo: You know, the sad—
Jason: It was unbelievable.
Leo: I know our audience couldn't care less about football, but we're going to talk about it just for a second. The sad story of course is that their offense, Atlanta's offensive coordinator, Kyle Shanahan, really was the one that blew that game by instead of running down the clock and doing a lot of running plays, decided for some reason no one understands, to go to the air and basically lost the game for them. He's our new coach in San Francisco, the 49ers. So we're really glad to have you, Kyle. Looking forward to great things.
Liz: It's really nice for the 49ers because they've been so bad. Because I resolved that I'm like morally against football because of the concussion problem.
Leo: Well yea, you should be. You're right.
Liz: Also other things that are morally reprehensible.
Leo: Domestic abuse.
Liz: Exactly. But you know, I decided I was going to stop watching football and then it was like no one really cares here. The big stadium is empty for the games.
Leo: No one talks about it.
Leo: You go to a 9ers game, it's in Silicon Valley. If you go to a 9ers game, it's almost always filled with the opposing team's fans.
Liz: Because people bought them for cheap on the side.
Mike: They have the away team advantage.
Leo: It's a—yes.
Liz: If they can get there.
Leo: Well, the last game of the season, the Seahawks game, you might as well have been in Seattle. I mean there were no 49ers fans there. Why would they be?
Jason: Fair weather fans.
Mike: Food at the stadium is good, though.
Leo: If you can get to it. Oh, don't get me started. So, hashtags in the Super Bowl in the ads slipped 30%. Is that bad? Is that more bad news for Twitter?
Jason: Hashtags slipped 30%.
Leo: That was the big thing. You couldn't have an ad, for a while you couldn't have an ad in the Super Bowl without a hashtag.
Mike: I think it's part of the harassment problem. I think people hijack hashtags and especially high visibility ones like this.
Liz: It's better to own your domain that you're telling everybody to go to.
Leo: So that's what they do. URL use went up.
Jason: It's funny. Now that you say that, we wrote an article before the Super Bowl of how your brand could use the Super Bowl hashtag. Use your brand to insert yourself into the conversation.
Leo: Of 66 Super Bowl ads, only 5 used their Twitter handles. Only 4 used their Facebook handles.
Leo: I think that's a big shift.
Mike: Twitter's a tainted brand, man, I swear it.
Leo: Somebody from Marketing Land needs to sit down and watch the whole game and count hashtags (laughing). I think it's one of their writers.
Liz: We're watching it anyway.
Leo: And they've got a graph.
Liz: Someone volunteered for that job.
Leo: I'd like to watch for the hashtags, please. Thank God for TiVo. #AvoSecrets I think you're probably—
Liz: I did listen to the end of the game. I went against my ban and listened to the end on TuneIn which brought me an Atlanta area station which had not sold any streaming ads so we had like Pink Panther music every time we went to commercial. It was like the opposite of the Super Bowl ads.
Leo: That is something that we need to solve. I'll listen to CNN on TuneIn and the worst, repetitive, bad ads and I'm sure that's all they could sell. We've got to solve that. Watching TV on Hulu is unwatchable. It's the same damn Captain Obvious ad over and over again.
Mike: Here's the solution. 60db should make a commercial or shows that are just that length and then they can insert them into the commercial spaces.
Liz: That's smart. You know, you've got to think creatively. I listened to a story on 60db on Marketplace this past week.
Leo: Love Marketplace.
Liz: On how creative marketers are buying ads on Morning Joe which is like a relatively cheap buy because that's how you reach the president who watches cable news.
Leo: So what are they advertising?
Liz: Whatever they want to. Wherever you need the attention.
Liz: No, no, no, not to buy stuff but to influence his policy.
Leo: Oh, that's interesting.
Jason: Interesting. That's fascinating.
Mike: And then he goes on and says, "Everybody is saying," and then whatever he saw on the ad.
Leo: There was an ad I'm told for Gorsuch, the Supreme Court nominee. They're running ads.
Liz: The administration is?
Leo: Yes. Or somebody is. Probably a PAC.
Liz: Maybe in the slots they pulled for the Obamacare ads. Put something else in there.
Leo: The House has done something good. They passed the email privacy act. We've got to praise them for that. This was a weird artifact for a long time of the telecommunications—I'm sorry, the Electronic Communications Privacy Act, was that any email on a server longer than 180 days was considered abandoned by the user and law enforcement didn't need a warrant to see it. It's like well you left it there for 6 months. You obviously didn't want it anymore. But times change. People do leave their email on the Gmail server for years. I've got every email I've ever received on Gmail for almost 11 years, right? That's what you do with it.
Liz: It says House passes, Senate yet to vote. But they're going to be done with the confirmation hearings in what, like a year? So, we'll see if this actually goes into law.
Mike: I don't think the Senate's going to pass it. I don't think they will.
Leo: So the bill updates it to say that no, you should have to get a warrant to access emails, social media posts and any online content that is more than 180 days old. There shouldn't be a sunset. But you're saying, the Senate, which has yet to vote, will not approve this?
Mike: I'm saying that the President was elected on a platform that had a lot to do with law and order over privacy, etcetera. And so I think that the zeitgeist at least in Washington D.C. right now is let's not do anything that ties the hands of law enforcement when they're trying to—
Leo: But why would the House pass it?
Liz: That's a good question.
Mike: I don't know.
Leo: In fact I was surprised that the House passed it.
Mike: Yea, me too.
Liz: I was just working on a story for tomorrow about Axios, the new outlet which is really great coming out of D.C.
Leo: You've got to explain Axios to me because it's by the guy who started Politico, right, or one of those?
Mike: Ina Fried got poached by them.
Liz: Yea, she starts Monday, tomorrow.
Leo: Yea, I saw Ina is there which is—that's giving me some encouragement. But I worry a little bit about it.
Liz: Tell me.
Leo: Well, what is their agenda?
Liz: I've already—they've launched for 3 weeks and I read their email first. The first thing I read.
Leo: Ah, so it's email.
Mike: You know it's going to take 5 seconds.
Liz: Yea, well this is their thing. Instead of paragraphs they do bullet points and they have scoops in those bullet points of what to pay attention to.
Mike: This is how I started my career in journalism actually when I was at UCLA. I was a political science major and I noticed that so many of my fellow politicals—I was an obsessive reader of The New York Times and all this other stuff, but most students don't read newspapers. And I'm thinking, come on. You're an international relations students. You should be up on what's happening in international relations. And so I created something just like Axios although it was a paper.
Leo: There's your mistake.
Mike: I summarized every major story and distributed it and sold it basically to other students at UCLA and it was like a godsend.
Liz: So Axios had a piece that was like what you should worry about with regards to surveillance in the Trump Administration. So I thought that was like helpful. Going forward, FISA is up for a vote but the end of this year. And the executive office has tremendous powers to spy on US people within the country. FISA's foreign. And then there's the encryption battle that's coming back again too. So I thought that was a really nice bullet pointy, here's what you should care about. You should care about this.
Leo: For years I subscribed to a magazine to do the same. They're called The Week. The idea was we're going to collate all of the weekly news magazines into one quick read. Like Mental Floss. One quick read.
Liz: And the main reporter that they have, like the headline name if you care about politics is this guy Mike Allen.
Leo: Oh, Mike Allen.
Liz: Who is like connected to everyone in Washington and gives you kind of like—they're the ones that people in the administration and in Congress are reading to get their gossip.
Leo: He writes the Axios AM newsletter.
Liz: Yea, the first thing you get. So when I wake up early with the baby, I'm like, all right. I'll read about politics.
Leo: I'll tell you why I'm nervous. I'm reading their tech—it's things like this. I'm reading their technology feed and most of this is some of the same kind of news we talk about except for Meet Houseparty, the next bit Gen Z craze. This is as far as I'm concerned, an already failed app that was created by the founders of Meerkat. They're writing about it yesterday.
Liz: That is weird.
Leo: And I'm a little concerned that this might be—
Liz: That's not an ad? It reads like one.
Leo: Yea. That this might be paid placement. It certainly isn't topical. And so and it's not marked as an ad. But maybe it just happened by accident that one of their reporters just read a press release and said let's cover it.
Liz: Yea, they are just getting started.
Leo: I just want to know more about—
Liz: I have a few friends there. And let me know if you care about Dan Primack, breaks tons of news.
Jason: It's really handy that your screen's big by the way.
Leo: (Laughing) You can read it over my shoulder, right? Yea.
Mike: You can read it from space.
Jason: It's like the House Party of TV screens.
Leo: Here is a big story though. Oracle has decided not to take it lying down. Remember, they lost that longstanding suit between Oracle and Google over Java. Ultimately the decision was a weird decision, saying that it was fair use for Google (laughing)—they didn't talk, they stipulated that you could copyright an API which even of in itself seems like a mistake. But even though APIs could be copyrighted, it was fair use that Google used the API.
Liz: So what's Google doing?
Leo: So already it's a damaging decision. Oracle has filed an appeal. So this one I suspect is going all the way to the Supreme Court which will be fascinating to see how the Supreme Court Justices understand APIs, Java. At least in the original trial the judge taught himself Java and wrote some code.
Jason: Yea, which is surprising and kind of impressive, but yea.
Leo: And here's another big story and the picture. The picture of the week ladies and gentlemen, from Business Insider, of the Magic Leap backpack.
Liz: Though I think the CEO of Magic Leap tried to play it down.
Leo: Yea. So, ok. So they brought this on themselves by being totally secretive, right? And get—what is their funding? $25-million? Some huge amount of money.
Jason: It's insane.
Leo: It's an insane amount of money.
Leo: Billions. Billions and billions of dollars. And only a few, so very few, select few have seen the Magic Leap prototype.
Liz: And it's like where their headquarters are, they're like at Disney World in Florida. So you have to fly—I would say yes if they asked me but you have to fly to Florida to go to get their demo.
Mike: And you have to stay in some Mickey Mouse hotel. You know, but just to give people a reminder of just how crazy prototypes could be, when Google started working on Android Wear the first thing they created was an Android for the phone and they built a strap so that people, engineers were walking around with the entire phone on their wrist. And if that leaked out and somebody said, "Look. This is what their watch is going to look like," that would be—
Leo: Absolutely. And the providence of this picture is unknown. The backpack is funky. The CEO tweeted, "No, no, no. We were just measuring the room," or something. This isn't even a prototype.
Liz: Yea, it was like a perception device rather than a production device.
Leo: Yea, yea. However, there a have been some not encouraging points about Magic Leap. The video that they showed people to recruit them was completely fabricated using technology from the same folks who brought you The Hobbit in New Zealand. You know, the one where you're walking around the office and stuff's happening. None of that was with Magic Leap technology. It was all just CGI.
Jason: It was their vision.
Leo: It was their vision.
Jason: It was not—
Leo: But not clearly labeled as such. So but anyway they've raised $1.5 billion, they're valued at $4.5 billion. We will see. This is a board meeting that's coming up soon, I think next week and one of the reasons this was a story was because people feel that the board will have to see some demo of some kind and so they feel like this maybe was leaked out. But it wasn't. Anyway, we'll watch with interest. I want it to succeed. Scoble told us last week that Magic Leap has had to back down a little bit on their claims. They're doing this thing where they have multiple focal points, some sort of ray tracing thing. And there were going to be 4 and they couldn't do 4. They've gone back down to 2. I don't know. I didn't understand it.
Jason: You know, it kind of reminds me of, this is going way back. I'm going to kind of date myself but Linus Torvalds after he created Linux and became this rock star, he worked at a company for like 3 years and they kept saying they're going to have this revolutionary technology. It's going to change computing. It's called Transmeta.
Jason: Nobody remembers Transmeta.
Leo: It was a microprocessor.
Jason: Yea, it was like we're going to—and then he kind of quietly faded. He leaves before the product even gets released after he was there for 3 years.
Leo: Wait, did the product get, did they release at Transmeta?
Jason: They kind of released it and it sort of never went anywhere. But—
Leo: It was a low processer X86 processor. You know what killed them?
Liz: Their Wikipedia entry starts with was.
Leo: Was. This was in 95.
Jason: They had a great idea because I—
Leo: The Crusoe.
Jason: The Crusoe, that was it. They had a great idea because I think in many ways this was the precursor of what—
Jason: And that's kind of how I feel about Magic Leap. I think that they are, they have all this hype, they have all this investment for an idea that's probably ahead of its time and will probably get marketed and monetized and developed by someone else eventually. Could be wrong, but it's really hard to see them finding a path for it.
Liz: One vote of confidence that meant something to me is that Sundar Pichai was the one who led the investment for Google. And he seems like a guy that doesn't get too hyped on random trends. Like he seems a bit more reasonable than your average VC who's like, "AR's going to be huge and we're going to be in the middle of this thing, even if it's bizarre, you know?"
Mike: But Google is also a long thinking—they probably want to lock in that sort of relationship.
Leo: They've got to make the long bets. They've got to make some long bets.
Liz: Right. A cynical view, you could say that it was right after Facebook bought Oculus.
Leo: And I think if you're a VC, you know that a certain percentage of your money, like 80% of it is thrown away.
Jason: 90. It's like 1 out of 10 that's—
Liz: So you're willing to take that shot.
Leo: You're making some long shot bets because well if this does hit, this could be the biggest hit of the century. As long as we're talking about Congress, apparently YODA is back. I love the name. It's the You Own Your Devices Act. You Own Devices Act. YODA. You Own—this kind of goes along the right to repair stuff which is going on in about 5 or 6 states. We talked to Kyle Wiens yesterday from iFixit about the stats. He said the one to write your Congress critter or you member of—your state legislature is in Massachusetts. That's the most likely. And he said all we need to do is get the right to repair through in one state because than that will force companies working in that state—
Liz: It's like fuel emissions standards.
Leo: They'll publish—well it's better than that because they'll have to publish their information. They'll have to offer it for sale. And you do in one state, you can't not do it in every other state.
Mike: They just need one state to publish everything and then that's that.
Leo: So if you're in Massachusetts, write to your—what do they call them in Massachusetts? Some arcane thing like your—I can't remember. Your alderman. Not your alderman.
Mike: Yea, something like that.
Leo: Right your member of the state legislature and say, "Please pass the right to repair act." But this YODA act is actually a national bill. First introduced in 2014. This is an EFF article. They're all excited about it but I have to say, I really probably shouldn't have high hopes.
Mike: The public doesn't care. That's the problem.
Leo: This over rights--
Liz: They do release really amusing press releases. They do it all in YODA voice at least at the start.
Mike: Get people to take them seriously.
Leo: YODA we first wrote about it when it was introduced in 2014. It would override EULAs that limit—you know, right now when you buy something, in many cases you're not buying it. You're buying the right to use it until such time as the company wants it back which means you can't transfer ownership of the device and most importantly the software. This would override those EULAs so that everyone who buys a secondhand device has the same access to security and bug fixes as the original owner had. You'd think that would be obvious. But we're in a weird state where software isn't a tangible good and the law doesn't really completely make sense. So, support that. Write to your congress critter. I feel like they're busy with other things right now. Like recess. I want a job where I get recess. Wouldn't that be fun?
Jason: In fairness they have to go back and talk to their constituents.
Leo: Oh, that's what they're doing. They're getting yelled at by their constituents.
Jason: I mean where I live in Louisville, Kentucky, Mitch McConnell came back to a huge protest of people in front of his house.
Leo: They followed him from the event to his home.
Mike: Ok, so this is a new trend in politics that is very, very bad because what's happening is that politicians are increasingly unable to hold public events because you get the mobs.
Leo: Protesters are shutting them down.
Mike: Yea and it's like the Tea Party started it.
Liz: Yea, I was going to say, this is not a new phenomenon. The Tea Party did the same thing.
Mike: But I think the biggest thing is that it's come from social media. So this whole idea of scrambling the conversation so that nobody could have a clear—
Leo: Stop doing that.
Mike: And so I think—
Leo: It's far better to go, sit there, be orderly and then stand up and say, "Mr. McConnell, I'm under the Affordable Care Act. I get my insurance. What are you going to do to replace it?" Would be much more effective.
Liz: I think that you could make a lot of money right now just selling like shame bells.
Leo: Shame. Shame. I don't want to see Mitch McConnell walking naked down Martin Street. No.
Mike: That would be a shame.
Leo: For many years, I've been receiving calls on the radio show about people saying, "You know, there's this great box you can buy. It's a Kodi box. It streams all the TV shows. I can get all the movies. Costs nothing, you just have to buy the hardware." And I've always said, "You know what? If you're not paying for HBO and if you're not paying for shame on you, shame, then you're probably pirating it." Well there have been 5 arrests now. This is the first arrest that I know of, for people selling fully loaded Kodi boxes.
Mike: All in the UK.
Leo: Unfortunately it's in the UK. Yea, they're protecting it, yea.
Jason: The thing is, in the UK you are actually paying because—
Leo: You pay the license fees.
Jason: You pay for—your taxes pay BBC.
Mike: So just for clarification—
Leo: This is not a knock on Kodi which is legal and good.
Mike: There's no compromised content on the device when you get it. They can be modified or add ons that give you this capability.
Leo: Unfortunately the arrests where in Bolton, Bootle, Cheadle, Manchester and Rhyl so.
Mike: Yea, I never even heard about it.
Jason: Those are great names.
Jason: Those are really great city names.
Leo: I thought Bolton, Bootle and Cheadle were your attorneys.
Jason: I would hire Bolton, Bootle and Cheadle.
Mike: Just to be clear also, this isn't for downloads. This is for streaming. This is for live TV.
Leo: This is the companies that took Kodi, put it on a device and then enhanced it to steal. But these have been available in the United States as well. I don't know if this will put a chilling effect into the companies that are doing this in the US. And I hope it does because Kodi's great. And it's a shame that people see Kodi and they go, "Oh. That's got to be legal."
Mike: Can we talk about gigabit fiber?
Leo: All right. Let's take a break. You added that. You're interested in this. It's actually a story you guys broke about Google and their fiber initiative. We'll talk about that in just a second. Jason Hiner with Tech Republic and CBS Interactive.
Liz: Tease, tease, tease.
Leo: You know, somebody told me you should never tease in a podcast because you can just fast forward.
Leo: Casper. Well, I love my Casper mattress. You will too. It's an online retailer of premium mattresses for a fraction of the price because you're buying not from a showroom that marks it up 50-100%. You're buying it direct from the factory. It's made in the US. And these are great mattresses. They have done the research. I mean if you go read up on the mattress and all the things they did to create a great mattress, all the prototypes they made. It's made of supportive memory foams for a sleep surface with just the right sink, just the right bounce. It's breathable so you're cool. You never get hot. It's not like a blanket underneath you. It breaths. And it provides very long lasting comfort and support. It both gives and supports. It's hard for me to describe. You've got to try it. And the good news is you can, not in some showroom with a sales clerk staring at you, giving you the evil eye in the broad daylight. No, in your home. Sleep on it for 100 nights. If for any reason you don't love it, Casper will come. They'll pick it up and they'll refund every penny you paid. So there's no risk and you get 100 night trial. I see this now more and more where these online companies. They realize that without a showroom people are reluctant. But this is such a great idea. You can try it. You don't need a showroom. And you're going to get a great mattress. Free shipping and free returns in the US and Canada. The mattress comes in a surprisingly compact box. We got a queen size. For my son I got a twin for college. This is a couple of years ago because the box was small. You know, he's on the 3rd floor, no elevator. You bring it upstairs, open it up. There's the mattress. And it kind of inflates after you open it. Smells great right out of the box. You can sleep on it immediately and you're going to love your Casper mattress. So a great night's sleep just around the corner. And all you have to do is visit Casper.com/twit. C-A-S-P-E-R.com/twit and use the promo code TWIT. Some terms and conditions apply because we're going to give you $50-dollars of your mattress purchase when you use the promo code TWIT. Casper.com/twit. I can't say the name of the mattress, but it's a mattress I've spent thousands of dollars on.
Jason: Is this the mattress that comes in a little box.
Leo: Your Casper does, yea. But the other one does not. Some guy comes in a truck and delivers it. And all this time I feel bad now. Thousands of dollars down the tube.
Mike: You could have got 4 Casper mattresses.
Leo: Caspers for all the gang. You guys could have your own Caspers.
Leo: So the FBI—I don't know what the source of this story is, but you know, FOIA, the Freedom of Information Act, you can request—and I think the FOIA thing is about the best thing that could happen to journalists, right?
Jason: Absolutely. Absolutely.
Leo: Best thing that's ever happened to journalists. But now the FBI says you can't request them by email anymore. You've got to fax it in or snail mail it in.
Liz: After you—you get one email per day I think.
Leo: Oh, you do?
Leo: Oh, it's not that bad. Ok, one a day is plenty. Although a lot of times FOIA, you send in 20, right? You'll cover the waterfront.
Jason: I mean, and this is just the ones that go to the FBI, right? This is not—because there's all kinds of information.
Leo: Every agency has to offer information.
Liz: And it sounds like they might. I think some folks in the Senate are looking into this.
Liz: Faxing is not the wave of the future.
Mike: This is a really dumb question, and I'm sorry for that, but can you even buy a fax machine now? Is it like—where can you get a fax machine?
Liz: You can get a fax app for your phone and then you take a picture of it and then you try to not get too much shadow.
Leo: There is apparently a FOIA portal, the eFOIPA portal which is only open from 4:00 am to 10:00 pm, Monday through Friday (laughing). I don't know. I don't know what's going on. It's very strange. All right, I just wanted to bring that up before we talk about gigabit. Now tell me about this story you did.
Jason: Yes. So, interestingly enough, we—so I wrote this article for ZDNet, this column for ZDNet last week to start the week which was about fiber broadband. Is it a waste with 5G and Elon Musk's satellites?
Leo: Yea, are we going to get wireless, so—well, it kind of happening in the home right? Everybody was putting in CAT-5 and then all of a sudden Wi-Fi became and why did I put the wire in?
Jason: Wired is always better, right? I mean we've got some tech here so I know they'll speak up and say this too. If you can have wired it's always better. It's more reliable, yadda, yadda, yadda. That said it is so expensive to lay fiber and what Verizon came up against with FIOS, what Google eventually came up with and why it stumbled is it's just so slow, it's so difficult to lay fiber.
Liz: To dig up concrete.
Jason: Yea, to dig up concrete.
Leo: It costs something like $5 thousand dollars per sub and is there justification?
Jason: They've got it down. In some cases it's 1000. There's a vendor now that says that they can do it for $500-$800 dollars.
Leo: And our provider, we have 10 gigabit fiber in here and that's from Sonic Net as everybody knows. And I've talked to Dane. Dane Jasper's the founder and CEO and he's been on the show. He says—and they're still laying fiber. He says, "We can make it economical. The only—what we need is 1 in 5 in a neighborhood to sign up. If we get 20% of a neighborhood, that makes it economical." But apparently Verizon which stopped its FIOS effort a couple of years ago, and now Google which is really slowing down on Google Fiber, I think at the behest of Ruth Porat, the new CFO of Google or Alphabet. Both seem to say we can't make money on that. So what's the story?
Jason: Obviously they bought Web Pass and they went into this—
Leo: That's the apartment building one, right?
Leo: That's the one. Om loves is Web Pass. That's what Om has.
Jason: Bunch of people in San Francisco I know have it. Love it.
Leo: Love it.
Jason: They say it's amazing.
Liz: But you have to live in an apartment building built since 2 years ago. It's not easy to get.
Jason: It's pretty limited. So but Google believes they can take this technology because it uses this point to point wireless, fixed wireless. It believes they can take this technology and apply it to fiber deployment for the last mile, right? So instead of putting that one fiber hut as Google calls it, where that connects to 12,000 homes, they can put some kind of wireless sensor there and they can beam it. And so they feel like they can go faster. So that was an opinion piece. But in the process of doing this, one thing that we discovered is that Louisville is one of the cities where fiber has been coming.
Leo: Your town.
Jason: Where I live.
Leo: But it's coming from AT&T.
Jason: Well, there's 2. So AT&T and Google Fiber have been in an epic battle in Louisville.
Mike: Right, starting in Austin and then—
Jason: Yea, started in Austin. Their battle started in Austin and in Louisville now, they are, that's where they're really at each other's throats.
Liz: You're going to get double fiber.
Leo: Wow. You're going to have $5-dollar internet.
Jason: So what happened though was Louisville was one of the cities they paused. So Louisville passed legislation, One Touch Make Ready which let any, let Google and any other fiber provider use AT&T's lines so AT&T did a big lawsuit against them over this. So that's why Louisville became ground zero in the courtroom. But it's also—so last week, or at the beginning of February, Google quietly moved Louisville from the potential cities which have all been paused to upcoming. And this is the first one since they paused.
Liz: And guess whose eyes noticed that?
Jason: Yea, exactly. So we started asking around about it and found that Google, you know a lot of signs from a lot of different sources that Google had been preparing to launch in Louisville. And what we found out at the same time was AT&T, at the same time we got wind of this, AT&T also got wind of this and they had slowed down their fiber deployment. Once Google wasn't coming in anymore, you know, they had kind of quit and we had searched for months to try to find one customer who—AT&T had said they had 10,000 people who were available to get it. We could not find one customer in Louisville who had it. And this happened in other cities too, Austin and a few others to the point where some had written AT&T makes these big announcements but like try to find a customer. It's really hard. And so Tech Dirt wrote—
Leo: Is it really disinformation to scare Google away?
Jason: Exactly. So Tech Dirt wrote that it's less fiber to the premises as fiber to the press release.
Leo: I like that.
Jason: And so we found 3 customers but we also found a bunch of contractors and they said now all of a sudden—because what we noticed is was they had stopped building out fiber once—in Louisville. But AT&T apparently got wind of this, that Google is now coming to Louisville and last week they started hiring tons of contractors and telling them if you can't move fast enough we'll find somebody else. We're putting fiber into essentially every play. Because what Google is about to roll out in Louisville according to these reports, is its mixed gigabit and wireless, it's next generation infrastructure where it's trying to combine the two of them which is quite a—you know, it's a new infrastructure. Obviously it's a lot different from what Web Pass has done in San Francisco and Boston and other cities. But it will be interesting to see. And then at the same time you have 5G, you have satellite, you know the satellites that Elon Musk and others are also talking about doing. And so obviously it's needed and Google being involved has spurred on competition and so—but it will be interesting to see. AT&T says they're building. Also Verizon says they're you know, building again. You have ones like Sonic. What's the one that you guys have?
Leo: Sonic Net.
Mike: But there's another one I haven't heard anyone talk about that I discovered on my own. My son got an apartment in Roseville, California which is north of Sacramento. And one of the options was Gigabit Ethernet. We're like, what? Who's providing that? It's called Consolidated Communications. They rolled out in Roseville first. They're next going to take over Sacramento and they're going to move into the Bay area according to their plans. $75-dollars a month for gigabit Ethernet.
Leo: That's great.
Mike: And it is blistering, blistering fast.
Leo: Sonic Net charges $40.
Jason: That's incredible that they charge $40. Actually some people are here from Atlanta. Google Fiber's been there and some other—anybody have fiber? No.
Leo: No. Only two people have it (laughing).
Liz: I feel like this is the answer to your question. Should we just wait for Elon Musk to do the satellite? No, we should have lots of competition.
Leo: That's the key.
Jason: Exactly. Without Google Fiber though, if Google Fiber doesn't press, will the competition be there? And I think the answer is no. We've seen that with AT&T. As soon as Google Fiber announced they weren't doing it, like they stopped building and we couldn't find a single customer. And so I think that Google Fiber is still credible.
Leo: Is it because it's hard to make money in that business? Is that really the problem or what? What, why do they not want to do it?
Jason: It is hard to make money.
Leo: And yet these little companies like Consolidated and Sonic are doing it. I would love to get in on the bottom of that.
Jason: The economics are hard. There's no doubt that the economics are hard. If you do it in small—
Leo: You know where it's hard? It's hard where there's competition. If you can't get a big chunk of the market—
Mike: You can't dominate it.
Leo: You can't dominate it. And that's what happened with cable. That's why the FCC gave cable franchises.
Jason: Monopolies, yea.
Leo: Yea, because if you can't—the infrastructure's so expensive you've got to dominate. You've got to own the market.
Mike: Speaking of satellite based wireless, it's kind of a funny story that I know. My brother-in-law is a developer in Santa Barbara, California. And he's got a friend that lives in the foothills, way beyond any sort of internet connectivity you can get. So he aimed a satellite dish to share his home Wi-Fi with this person that's like 3 miles away.
Leo: That's generous.
Mike: And they matched up these satellite dishes and the person has had—sharing his Wi-Fi for a long time. And it works great. I'm like, wow that is weird.
Leo: More people should do that. Plus you get fried chicken every time a bird flies through it, you get dinner (laughing). I'm sorry. I'm sure it's microwave though, right? I just don't want a lot of microwave beams flying around.
Jason: I guess the other question is, because the fiber only really works in metro areas, right?
Leo: You have to have a population density.
Jason: That's where 5G and satellite are going to play a really big role.
Leo: Ironically and sadly, but this has always been the case. Where you really could use it, especially wireless technology in rural areas, where they don't have the population density, but inevitably, it happened with YMAX too, it rolls out in the cities because everybody wants to make the most amount of money. What is the state of 5G? Is that just completely marketing or is it actually coming along?
Jason: It's actually a lot more—I saw some demos at CES this year that were legitimate and they were wireless 5G signals.
Leo: What is the technology for 5G? It sounds like it's a market basket of different things. There's no one thing.
Jason: They're still throwing everything into—you know, LTE and 4G were still—5G is a marketing term certainly.
Leo: Just like LTE, Long Term Evolution. That doesn't mean anything. And for a long time, 4G was, well, 3G but plus.
Jason: 3 and a half G and all of that.
Leo: Is there a definition of 5G that is like—
Jason: A standard? No, there's not a rock solid standard yet. They're still throwing a lot at the—
Leo: Here's what the Next Generation Mobile Networks Alliance, NGMNA says. "Data rates of 10 megabits per second for tens of thousands of users. Data rates of 100 megabits per second for metro areas. A gigabit per second on the same office floor." In other words, it obviously is very distant dependent, right?
Leo: Several hundred thousand simultaneous connections for massive wireless sensor networks. That's one of the purposes of 5G is Internet of Things, small devices, sensors, spectral efficiency significantly enhanced compared to 4G. That's good news because spectrum is limited. Coverage improved. Signaling efficiency enhanced. And 1-10 millisecond latency. Wow. Which is a lot less than an LTE. So this is the standard.
Jason: Yea, fiber is at a 2 to 3 second latency. So it's down in the same ballpark. And even the satellites, the satellites that Space X is talking about putting up, you know they're basically like 30 second, 30 millisecond.
Leo: Well, that's good for a satellite.
Jason: That's really good. And that's what most of our good connections are now today.
Leo: 20-30, yea.
Jason: Where satellite today is like 6-800 milliseconds.
Mike: Why do the satellite projects always seem to fail though? Remember Teledesic?
Mike: Bill Gates was going to have the entire planet wired by 1999.
Jason: See, that's what Elon Musk says now. He's like, "We're just going to do the whole planet." Although he's worried that the Chinese, they're going to shoot down his satellite. Because they have actually blown up some satellites.
Leo: Are they geostationary? So they're not orbiting.
Jason: There's like 4000 of them. So they're going to be—yea.
Liz: Do you know where satellite communication has zoomed forward in recent years is back country access to satellite for GPS. Like I do trips where you're in the middle of nowhere and can't get a signal and that's like not really reasonable anymore because it's so easy to bring a device. Like there's this company DeLorme. I want to say DeLorme because it has an E on the end of it, but I think you're actually supposed to say DeLorme.
Leo: Yea, DeLorme is a longtime GPS manufacture.
Liz: And they're just like if you go hiking in the back country now, everyone has one on them. And they're—at home, their family is watching their little dots go.
Leo: Oh, you do?
Liz: You can set it up to update as often as you want so hourly is pretty frequent. And then you see the person walking, where they are. It's a safety technology and up until a year or two ago, the main device was a Spot which was just like a 911 device.
Leo: I was going to say Spot.
Liz: And this is now basically like a satellite texture and GPS thing. And I don't know. I feel like I will as long as I'm on this earth now, I will be in range.
Mike: Every couple of years I think, I get inspired. I'm like, you know what? I'm going to get, I'm going to get a satellite phone or someway to get satellite data. I'm sure the prices have come down. I haven't checked the prices.
Liz: And these are, these are—and you can just activate them for the month you're on and it's like $15-bucks or something. It's just crazy.
Mike: But it's just text messaging essentially, right? You can't actually get—
Leo: You're not surfing the web.
Liz: I'm not surfing the web in my tent, no.
Mike: That's what I want. I want—
Liz: Then why are you in the tent?
Mike: I want to be watching in—
Leo: (Laughing) There's no Netflix on this.
Liz: Look out the view.
Leo: They're not inexpensive. This is a DeLorme inReach for $250 bucks.
Liz: That's great.
Leo: Base model and if you want Nav, it's $300-bucks.
Jason: About the same size as this watch.
Leo: Do you pay monthly, is that what you're saying?
Liz: Yea. You activate it and there's a couple if different levels. But basically to get unlimited it's, I forget, $20, $15-bucks a month.
Leo: So you're like an out country backpacker, that kind of thing.
Liz: Yes, I like technology and not technology.
Leo: And getting far, far away. Nowadays, I would think people would be scared to do this. You mean I'll be out of touch? I'll have no way of—so this is why this exists.
Mike: These millennials. I remember a time—
Leo: I wish I could text Google and ask them where to go.
Mike: We used to use the Thomas Guide to drive around.
Leo: Yea, love those books. This is interesting. I wasn't aware. I'm familiar with Spot but that was like help me.
Liz: Yea, that was like SOS send emergency.
Leo: What you can do within reach.
Mike: I think I suddenly need this, actually. We're going to be living in Morocco this year in Fez.
Leo: So what does it use? Iridium. The failed Motorola geostationary satellite that was for Sat phones.
Jason: Does it really?
Liz: I feel like it's kind of like a Garmin type thing where you're like someone else is going to make these too, but this is like the company that's been doing it forever and they're good at it.
Leo: Now we know what happened to the original satellite.
Liz: I tried texting on the version I was using this summer and—
Leo: Was it real slow?
Liz: It's like, you know, move up and down the keyboard with a little 4 corners device.
Leo: You're in the middle of nowhere. What more do you want? You're in the middle of nowhere.
Liz: Yea. It's just like change that little version of reality. A couple of summers ago I went to Glacier Bay and you know, didn't see a person for 4 days.
Leo: We of course, and people who are Tech TV fans from days gone by know very well about one of our colleagues, James Kim, who followed a GPS into—this was early days of GPS, it was about 10 years ago.
Liz: You know, for some reason that story just drew something in my head recently and I went and reread all the stuff about it. And it's so crazy to think about. I think it was in 2006 when it happened.
Leo: It wouldn't happen today.
Liz: No, it's just different.
Mike: The GPS mapping system said, "Oh, this is a perfectly good road. This is fine. It's a road."
Leo: So they followed it. Got stuck. He had his two children with him.
Liz: And his wife.
Leo: And his wife. And they had some food, some snacks but no cell signal. There was no cell signal. They had to, you know, they didn't know what to do. They were literally burning their tires for warmth and finally James, sadly, said, "Well, I'm going to go and get help." And there you go. He passed away in the snow trying to get help for his family.
Jason: He was one of my co-workers at CNET.
Leo: So, boy, you're right. That's something that we hope will never happen again.
Liz: Yea, I mean but we're just in a time where that's changing. You also have like the Malaysian Airlines flight going away and—
Leo: Yea, they never found that.
Liz: A satellite picture taken of every place on the globe every day or you know, we're living in an increasingly documented privacy-free world, but there are some benefits to that.
Leo: Let's take a break on that note (laughing). You know what technology's good for though? Actually really good for, is buying tickets online. You know if you want to see something—
Leo: Don't play that. I'm talking here. I'm working here. Actually let's do that first. That's a good idea. I forgot all about that. You know, we have a staff. They're really sweet. They work very hard on making these little movies about what happened during the week and I always forget to play them. So let's do it. Let's see what happened this week on TWiT.
Narrator: Previously on TWiT.
Jeff Jarvis: Ok, Google, play medieval music.
Google Home: Here's a music station called Folk Metal.
Leo: Folk Metal? Ok, Jarvis, stop.
Narrator: iOS Today.
Leo: The national nightmare is over ladies and gentlemen. Finally, Jason will get his Pixel back and you'll get your iPhone back.
Jason Howell: What I realized at the end of the month was, I mean it's just another OS that does the same darn thing.
Leo: They get amazing battery life though. I like that.
Jason Howell: I, out of sheer laziness, have got into the habit of not plugging it in at night because I knew it would make it to the next day.
Narrator: All About Android.
Florence Ion: Is there anything that just did not work on Android that really frustrated you that you just really missed from iOS?
Megan Morrone: Well, I missed iMessage really. But there's nothing else that everybody uses.
Narrator: Tech News Today.
Megan: The Wall Street Journal reports on a new handheld device that will tell you if you smell bad. A gadget called KunKun. It connects with a smartphone app which will tell you whether or not you stink.
Jason: If you think you need a dedicated device to tell you whether you smell, you smell. That's my guess.
Megan: Yea. Right.
Narrator: TWiT! Making the world safe for technology.
Leo: Megan, have you ever had an Android phone? Yea, you did.
Megan: Yea, but I've always been a Mac user. I was just forced into using Android and I don't hate it.
Jason: That's the praise we're looking for.
Leo: "I don't hate it." I do hate this watch. I'll tell you that right now. She hated the Android Watch. She said, "Do you have anything less crappy?" I said, "No." (Laughing). Here's Megan with a look at the week ahead.
Megan: Here's a look at just a of the stories we'll be watching in the week ahead. Recode holds a big conference out here in California featuring speakers like Apple's dancing executive, Eddy Cue and friend of the network, Ben Thompson from Stratechery. And this isn't just any conference. It's one of the fancy ones.
Leo: Oh. I didn't know Ben would be out here.
Megan: With a celebrity chef. T-Mobile will release earnings on Valentine's Day of this week. In case the announcement is bad, they will also aim to distract customers by bringing back their free pizza deal for subscribers. Starting this week, customers can claim one free large or pan single topping pizza every month by logging into the T-Mobile app. 500 Startups Demo Day is also this week, the accelerator for new companies will show off their latest prop to investors. And finally, Om Malik is bringing together some of the greatest mind in AI for a conference in San Francisco that aims to address the challenges of a future where artificial intelligence is the new black. Jason Howell and I will cover all of this and a whole lot more all week on Tech News Today, each and every weekday at 4:00 PM Pacific. And that is a look at the week ahead.
Leo: Thank you, Megan Morrone, of Tech News Today. I love the hashtag for the Gigaom AI event.
Liz: What was it?
Leo: It's #Gigaomai. Maybe that's just—if you read it differently. Our show today brought to you by SeatGeek, the best deal on sports, concerts and theater tickets. With SeatGeek, buying tickets on line for sports and concerts—you know, it's always challenging. You can get them from a lot of different venues. It's always been hard to find the best deal for the show or the game you want to go to. And none of the older ticket sites have any incentive to change that. But SeatGeek is different. They've created an amazing app. I use it all the time. They make it easier than ever for you to buy and sell tickets. SeatGeek, you'll love this, everything is designed at SeatGeek to make life easier for fans. They do the price comparison for you by searching multiple ticket sites so you're going to get the best deal available. And SeatGeek wants to get you the most bang for your buck so every ticket on SeatGeek is given a grade based on value. So you know if you're overpaying for a bad seat or more importantly, you'll see underpriced seats and be able to find deals that fit your budget. And I've got a $20-dollar rebate off your first SeatGeek purchase. So what you need is the SeatGeek app on iOS or Android, go to the settings tab and add the promo code TWIT and you will get $20-dollars after you make your first ticket purchase. So this one's on me. How about that? SeatGeek. Go to the iOS Store, the Android Play Store. Get the SeatGeek app and in the settings add the promo code TWIT for $20-dollars off. You'll like it too. What we decided, Lisa and I decided, we want to see more live music, you know?
Jason: That's great.
Leo: I love live music. And when you see it you go, "Why don't I hear more live music?" We had live music in the studio a couple of weeks ago and it was like, "We want to see more live music." So we just go to SeatGeek every Wednesday and say, "What can we go see?" Sometimes we'll go out of town. Like maybe there'll be a great concert in Louisville soon and I'll just come visit you.
Jason: The Philharmonic.
Leo: There you go.
Mike: And Folk Metal.
Leo: Folk Metal. Love it. Apple—I don't like this story. I hope this is fake news. Is it fake news? Apple iCloud keeps any browser history deleted going back more than a year? There have been a lot—this comes from Elcomsoft which is a Russian hacking tool created (laughing)—but I think this is related to the story about Apple keeping your contacts in the cloud and your history of your messages and so forth. This is probably a setting.
Jason: Yea, by default the browser, if I remember right, somebody can confirm this, their browser keeps your browsing history forever.
Leo: It wants to sync it. So you can sync it. So you get a new device and your browsing history's in there.
Jason: So first thing if I have a new Mac is I go in and I turn that off.
Liz: Yea, whenever I see an alert saying do you want to do something with iCloud, I say no (laughing).
Leo: Vladimir Katalov who is the CEO at Elcomsoft said that iPhone keeps a separate iCloud record called tombstone. Ok, that's suspicious right there. In which deleted—it knows their deleted web visits were stored. He said he came across the issue by accident when he was looking through Safari history on his own iPhone and he used their phone breaker software to extract data from the linked iCloud account and found deleted records going back a year. Now, in Apple's favor they call them cleared not deleted. Does that help? No. Katalov said a year, it may be forever.
Jason: Yea. I bet it's forever because the Safari browser—
Leo: What's that (laughing). What's that? Oh, it's Russian saying stop talking.
Liz: Yea, just by loading this article.
Leo: I apparently have triggered something bad.
Jason: I think all the Safari versions keep your history forever by default and you have to turn that off.
Leo: So definitely turn off the iCloud. And by the way, we should point out and I point this out every time, but I think Apple doesn't really want people to remember or realize this, that Apple has the key to your iCloud stuff. Your stuff may be encrypted and it's encrypted by a key, but Apple has the key. Otherwise it wouldn't be able to do all this stuff, selective syncing stuff and that means if they receive—
Liz: Not for iMessage though, right?
Liz: As well?
Leo: Bad news. And if they got a subpoena or a warrant or maybe if they just felt like it they could give that information to law enforcement. And a malicious—I don't think Apple would just spy on you for fun, but a malicious employee, a rogue employee could. So this is no different than a lot of cloud services drop boxes.
Jason: I also wonder if somebody hacks Apple, right? And then they can—
Leo: Right. We've seen that before, remember? Remember those pictures from famous movie stars? Do you trust Google? Maybe you shouldn't. Google has added a—and this is from The Register, the privacy, what would they call them? Wonks at The Register. Chrome 56, the latest version of Chrome which came out at the end of the month added something that they're calling a Bluetooth snitch API. With Chrome 56 according to Google, your web app can communicate with nearby Bluetooth devices in a private and secure manner using the web Bluetooth API. In other words, you don't have to pair with light bulbs, toys, heart rate monitors, LED displays. Just a few lines of Java script. And you can query all of these devices. Google says it's TLS and users have to allow the connection with a touch or a mouse click. So that's good news. But it's kind of built in and how long before somebody figures out a way to get around the click?
Jason: Just leave the front door open. It's fine.
Leo: And can you turn it off? Probably not. Unlike you're iCloud stuff. All right, this is all depressing. I'm afraid that I don't—you have anything I've missed that's really good news? The Beats X headphones will be here.
Jason: What about the Amazon Go, the cashier-free Go stores. They only need 6 employees.
Leo: Yea, I saw that too. That's not that happy story unless your Amazon. Now Amazon says, "We're not in the business to put people out of work and we aren't going to probably put these stores everywhere." But these were the stores that they were prototyping in Seattle, I think there's only one, where you walk in, you use a bar code on your phone and say it's me. And then the cameras and sensors in the store will follow you around and if you want anything, you just take it off the—it's kind of like going to Vegas and buying, you know, using the mini-bar. It goes, "Oh, you took a sandwich." And then walk out the door. But you're automatically charged.
Jason: Amazon's worked really hard on this to say, "Look, we're not trying to minimize the number of employees, we're trying to provide better service.
Leo: I think as a user I would like it, right?
Jason: Who wouldn't like that? That's you know, the line at the grocery stores is kind of the worst part about going. They've said that the jobs are going to be in food prep, that now they're going to have all these pre-prepped meals.
Leo: The tech industry has to at some point kind of just own up to it. It's not really it's fault, but all of the things that the tech industry is doing about automation, machine learning and all of this are ultimately going to cost jobs. They are. That's what—
Jason: They're like the John Deere of the 21st century, right?
Jason: At the turn of the century, 1900, 40% of Americans worked in farming.
Leo: They were wielding scythes.
Liz: I did a story on this recently. I tried to find the good news on the automation killing job story and I found, I talked to a professor at NYU named Arun Sundararajan and he had some ideas that were relevant and he used the farmer example too. But was also like we didn't have tourism a hundred years ago. And now that's a huge industry that employees millions of people and supports many world economies. Another one he suggested where automation could create jobs, or AI could create jobs was healthcare. So like right now, doctors do how many years of preparation before they can get their job and then we pay them lots of money to do their very specialized thing. But if we had a world where AI could enable always on healthcare, then we would need healthcare technicians to just go like, oh, your chart looks weird today. Let's work on how to diagnose that. And like keep you all healthier. And that actually would be like a version of the world where more people work in that industry then the many that do today.
Leo: Does he think there's going to be a net zero or?
Liz: No, I don't think you can go that far but he—it was a nice distraction from the bad news, bad news?
Mike: For about 5 weeks approximately 11 months ago I was in Cuba. And that's an extreme example of a country that has maintained full employment by not automating anything. I mean you see people sweeping the streets with palm fronds and the farmers are using ox driven things and they have full employment and living in Cuba sucks. It sucks.
Liz: You think that being employed is not the ticket to happiness?
Mike: I'm saying that if you try, if you resist automation in order to employee people, there's a spectrum obviously. But it will never work.
Leo: But that's a communist country. They don't pay rent. It's a very different situation. There might be other reasons it sucks.
Mike: But my point is all these other things that employee people in our world, like John Deere--
Leo: Well I prefer the life we had. But I feel very bad that there's a lot of people—industrial jobs are not coming back. Drivers are going to lose jobs. Cashiers. My first job out of high school, a cashier at McDonalds, I don't know if that job will exist in 10 years.
Mike: Well, robots should be making those burgers because that's robotic work.
Liz: Yea, and that was the other point that he had which is like we've been worried about this forever, but the fact that technology improves on the jobs that we have today doesn't mean tomorrow's jobs are less interesting. And he said actually I think under the Johnson administration, there was a committee to figure out basic income. So this is not a new conversation.
Leo: I don't think—is he advocating basic income because I don't think that's a good solution.
Liz: He's not at all.
Leo: But I do think that preparing for this, training for what jobs will exist in 10 years is a much better plan than trying to bring back industrial jobs which are never going to come back.
Jason: The funny thing that's happened, if you go back and look at the public dialogue and the Industrial Revolution, they were freaked out in the same exact way. They were like what's going to happen? There's going to be no jobs left.
Liz: So maybe take some solace in looking at history and learning that that wasn't the case then.
Mike: Do you have any idea how many blacksmiths are going to be out of work now? Like what are we going to do?
Leo: They're going to become coders. In fact this article in Wired Magazine, this is—I'm sorry guys—from Clive Thompson, The Next Big Blue-Collar Job Is Coding.
Mike: I guess he's a data miner.
Liz: No, I interviewed Clive about this story. It's running tomorrow morning.
Leo: Oh good. Tell us about it.
Liz: Well, for an example, it's mentioned in that story, there is a guy who's name is Rusty Justice who employs former coal miners in Kentucky. I'm not sure how far from you. I forget my Kentucky geography.
Jason: A couple hours.
Liz: Yea, to – they've retrained themselves as a coding squad and they brought them all in, similar to those things where you pay to go for 8 weeks to get some kind of vocational credit that you can employ yourself. Except they actually hired the people, brought them in, trained them and now they're working as a team taking gig.
Leo: This company's called BitSource.
Liz: And so Clive's point is like, we make a lot of hype about the coding genius staying up 72 hours to make the perfect invention that we've never heard of but the reality is that a lot of coding is like putting together pieces which is not that different from a job in like construction or plumbing.
Leo: But some day that logging code will write itself.
Liz: And if you think about it that way, maybe it's—
Leo: Those kinds of—so you don't have—
Liz: So I asked him that question and he said, "What I'm talking about is the next 15-20 years. After that it's up to—"
Jason: I'll give you another one too. One of the dirty little secrets about big data is that the algorithms really aren't smart enough to sort out all the things we need for big data.
Leo: Humans have to.
Jason: Humans have to. There are armies of people doing data sorting, data cleaning and all kind of things behind that—IBM, Microsoft, Amazon, they hire armies and armies of people doing click work. We did a big investigative story on this because there's some problems with it too because they're all independent contractors and yea. It's got its issues. And so we wrote about that especially Amazon Mechanical Turk. But this is creating a whole new scale of jobs. Some people are arguing that these are some of the blue-collar jobs of the digital age.
Leo: You know, it reminds me of the music industry where you had these superstars, these multi-platinum artists, but there was plenty of lower level work for just journeyman musicians.
Liz: Playing at a bar.
Leo: Playing at a bar or whatever and those weren't bad jobs. But if you looked at Metallica, they weren't Metallica level jobs but I think there are a lot of people.
Liz: And I think his story is kind of a rebranding of this idea that we need more coding education because that's where the jobs are. But to say it, this notion of calling it a blue-collar job kind of shifts your mind metaphor.
Leo: It's not a blue-collar job. You're working in an office.
Liz: Well the collar doesn't have to be physical. It just kind of means a good middle class income.
Mike: There was an article recently saying that the solution to journalism's problems is that journalists need to re-embrace their blue-collar roots which is an interesting idea. And I agree with it. I totally agree with it.
Leo: But we are also taught a lot that success means you're going to be a millionaire or you're going to have these—and you know what? Podcaster is the next blue-collar job frankly. Most people—there's plenty of good, middle class income that's not so bad these days.
Mike: Right but I think it's also so much, especially in tech journalism, which I know I'm a huge critic of tech journalism as it is nowadays, but everybody wants to be an access journalist. Everyone wants to be a star. Like look at me, I'm at the Apple event. It's like, you know what? Why don't you do your job? Why don't you go find something that is not following the herd around and broadcasting the echo chamber. Think for yourself and do your own leg work. That's what we need in journalism.
Leo: Yep, that's my motto. Do you talk about this in Code Blocks? Like, you know, making a living? No. A little?
Liz: I'm going to fix your shout out because I can see his shirt and it's Coding Blocks.
Leo: Coding Blocks. I'm trying to give him a plug and I did it wrong.
Mike: Coding Blocks? Is that what he said?
Leo: The Coding Blocks Podcast. Listen every week (laughing). Am I close? Anyway, it's been great having Liz Gannes here. She is at six—there it is. CodingBlocks.net. And I asked you, is it Curly Braces Blocks? And you said it was. It is. I see them. Clean Code – How to Write Classes the Right Way. Oh, this is like the real deal. This is like actual coding. Fun. I always wondered if you could do a coding podcast. Apparently you can. Liz Gannes is at 60db.co. Everybody should subscribe, should get the app and if you have, if you're lucky enough to have an Amazon Echo device, turn on that task. It's a great task.
Jason: Can you begin to listen to one on your phone and the finish it—
Liz: Yea, absolutely. The stream's about you, not like every single person in the world listening to the radio at the same time.
Leo: That's a good slogan. The stream's about you. I like it. Thank you, Liz. Great to see you again.
Liz: Yea, thanks for having me.
Leo: Congratulations on your success.
Mike: I don't know. The stream about you sounds like a Trump Russian.
Liz: The stream is for you? It's your stream.
Leo: (Laughing) The stream is for you. Stand right there.
Liz: Oh, I see where you're going with that.
Leo: That's Mike Elgan. Mike Elgan, he is at, well, Mike Elgan or Elgan.com.
Leo: @mikeelgan on the Twitter plus Mike Elgan on the Google +.
Leo: FATCast is his podcast. All about—
Mike: Yes, food and technology. And sometimes food or technology.
Leo: And someday you're going to tell us what your wife is up to.
Mike: She is hatching a scheme that is going to be awesome. Someday. I'll tell you in a couple of months.
Leo: Couple of months. Come back. You'll be in Vienna or Venice or somewhere with a V and you will come on this show and you will tell us what it is.
Jason: Exit stealth-mode.
Leo: (Laughing) She's in stealth-mode. That's right. Jason Hiner, always a pleasure. He's the guy who got me elected as president of the internet many years ago and I'm still serving.
Jason: Yea, it was a lifetime office.
Leo: Yea, a lifetime job with no power, so it's good. Jasonhiner.com, @jasonhiner and of course you can catch him on ZDNet and CBS Interactive and Tech Republic.
Jason: Follow the Geeks, too.
Leo: Buy the book because it's about me and my friends.
Jason: And digital innovators. Follow the Geeks, yea.
Leo: And I know every one of them and I love every one of them. It's a really good story except for the young woman. I've never heard of her and that's the ending.
Jason: Maya Penn.
Leo: Maya Penn. I love that.
Jason: Yea, she's 14. A 14-year-old entrepreneur. Had been an entrepreneur since she was 8 when we—yea, she's doing amazing things now too. She's published her own book now and has been on Oprah and everything. She's blown up just as we figured she would.
Leo: We do TWiT every Sunday afternoon, 3:00 PM Pacific, 6:00 PM Eastern Time. That's 2300 UTC. If you like to watch live you can go to our website TWiT.tv/live or live.twit.tv or YouTube.com/twit because yes, we're on YouTube Live and they haven't kicked us off yet. Celebrating our 3rd week of not being kicked off YouTube Live. It is a big milestone. I think we started YouTube Live right when the president was inaugurated. So it's interesting to see who lasts longer (laughing). He's probably going to win on that one. We also are available on demand after the fact, audio and video at TWiT.tv or wherever you get your favorite podcasts. Or, you know, tune in 60db and you'll hear some great short TWiT bits. I think our long show is too long even for your long.
Liz: No, I think it's on there.
Leo: Is it?
Leo: Oh, that's nice.
Jason: This is the fastest one I've ever done.
Leo: It feels fast.
Jason: This went really quick.
Leo: It feels fast. Believe me, this was a long ass show. Ask the people sitting in the uncomfortable chairs in the front row over there. Is this a long ass show? Yes it was.
Mike: Long form podcast.
Leo: Long form. Very long form. We're still doing the survey. Last few days. We're going through the end of the month so I guess a couple more weeks left if you would like to take a couple of minutes out of your day and I know it's a busy day. And I'm very grateful if you go to TWiT.tv/survey. It literally is just a couple minutes. It's a much shorter one that the ones in the past. It helps us sell the show so we understand a little bit better about you but it's anonymized. We don't want your personal information. We're not telling people about you personally. We're just—
Jason: If you love it, support it.
Leo: Who listens to TWiT? Is it men? Is it women? Is it college graduates? Who is it? That kind of thing.
Jason: I listened to TWiT in 18 different cities last year. I counted that. I meant to tell you. I've been meaning to tell you that.
Leo: How did you count that? You just did?
Jason: Just because I was in 18 different cities and I listened whenever—I go walk whatever city I'm visiting. I love to walk in whatever city I'm in and I always listen to podcasts and TWiT. I always listen to TWiT.
Leo: Well, I hope you all always listen to TWiT! And I thank you for doing so. And we will see you next time. But meanwhile, I have to say, another TWiT is in the can. Bye-bye.