This Week in Tech Episode 853 Transcript

Please be mindful this transcript is AI-generated and may not be word for word.


Leo Laporte (00:00:00):
It's time for TWiT This Week in Tech. From the Big Technology podcast, Alex Kantrowitz joins Carolina Milanesi from the Heart of Tech and Shira Lazar COVID survivor. It's gonna be a great show. We will talk about what some are calling the worst 0-day in a decade, Amazon out for 12 hours, those 23andme spit tests and where they're, what they're really gonna be. And what do you do with Tesla's comically, large windshield wiper? It's all coming up next on TWiT.

New Speaker (00:00:36):
Podcasts you love, from people you trust. This is TWiT.

Leo Laporte (00:00:50):
This is TWiT This Week in Tech episode, 853 recorded Sunday, December 12th, 2021. Make it cozy. This Week in Tech is brought to you by Podium. Join more than 100,000 businesses already using Podium to streamline their customer interactions. Get started for free at, or sign up for a paid Podium account and get a free credit card reader restrictions apply. And buy OurCrowd. Ourcrowd helps accredited investors invest early in pre IPO companies alongside professional venture capitalists. Join the fastest growing venture capital investment community at And by Udacity. Udacity offers online education. That's geared toward people looking to take their technology to the next level. Get the in demand tech skills. You need to advance your career. Visit to learn more. And by Userway ensures your website is accessible, ADA compliant and helps your business avoid accessibility related lawsuits. The perfect way to showcase your brand's commitment to millions of people with disabilities. It's not only the right thing to do. It's also the law. Go to for 30% off Userway's AI powered accessibility solution. It's time for TWiT This Week in Tech, the show we cover the week's tech news with some of the most interesting people in tech, Carolina Milanesi is back. We're great to see you founder of the Heart of Tech. She's an analyst. What are you? What do you principally cover?

Carolina Milanesi (00:02:46):
I cover everything that is consumer tech, and now it applies yes to the consumer market, but also to enterprise. So future work and how technology is shaping business.

Leo Laporte (00:02:55):
That's what we're talking about. Boy, the future of work, whatever that might be also with this expert on big tech, he has the Big Technology podcast and newsletter Alex Kantrowitz, great to have you back. Thanks for joining us, Alex.

Alex Kantrowitz (00:03:10):
It's great to be. It's always nice to chat with you, Leo.

Leo Laporte (00:03:12):
Yes. Well, your expertise is always always welcome. You're you've picked a good topic to be an expert in, big tech is a big topic these days. Do you think?

Alex Kantrowitz (00:03:22):
Yeah, never. Go ahead.

Leo Laporte (00:03:24):
Do you think Jeff Bezos will ever invite you up in the new shepherd to, to, to see the Earth from a distance?

Alex Kantrowitz (00:03:30):
Only if he's planning to not return that one? <Laugh>.

Leo Laporte (00:03:34):
That will be the one. Michael Strahand went up yesterday. The GMA star. We'll talk about that later. Also with us. Oh, I'm so glad she's here. We were worried scheduled for last week. Shira Lizar said I can't. I've got COVID 19. But you're feeling better. Welcome. Shira Lazar 

Shira Lazar (00:03:52):
Yes. I'm here. My first public appearance.

Leo Laporte (00:03:52):
From What's Trending.

Leo Laporte (00:03:55):
This is it. Huh?

New Speaker (00:03:57):
This is it. Wow. Got it. Leo, the exclusive.

Leo Laporte (00:03:59):
You and your SO, your boyfrien got it. Can we say boyfriend still or do you have to be partner, partner? I like it. You and your partner both got it at Thanksgiving.

Shira Lazar (00:04:11):
Oh yeah. Don't say that too loud. My family was mad that I shared that on social media. <Laugh>

Leo Laporte (00:04:18):
One of the things Shira is known for is a, is openness on social media. She's but I love that about you you're

Shira Lazar (00:04:27):
I appreciate it. My, my family did not appreciate it.

Leo Laporte (00:04:29):
Yeah. My family's always saying why do you talk about us so much, but what, what else do we got? Right. <laugh>.

Shira Lazar (00:04:35):
Exactly sorry. That's what we are all born with this. We were born together. So it's, it's the way it is.

Leo Laporte (00:04:41):
It's like being married to a comic, you know, you're gonna be in some jokes, sorry. That's just the way it is. The way the cookie crumbles. It's the way the cookie crumbles. Anyway. It's great to see you. I'm glad you're feeling better. I was worried about you. But I'm glad to hear you, I appreciate it. What's your guy's name,

Shira Lazar (00:04:57):
Chris. You and Chris. Are he also, oddly enough? He doesn't like being on camera also with people, he hates it.

Leo Laporte (00:05:03):
I noticed that because I'm watching your reels. Chris used to be a big part of them and then he disappeared. And I, I asked Lisa, I said, are they still together? She said, yes. Chris just doesn't like to be in the, in the.

Shira Lazar (00:05:13):
Oh, she knows she didn't need to, to talk to him.

Leo Laporte (00:05:16):
Yeah. She could tell it's obvious. The last one we saw, he snuck up behind you and then it was never again. Exactly. Anyway, I'm glad you're both feeling a little bit better and you get to take some now some much needed time off for the holidays. Yeah, yeah, exactly. Ah, so first of all thoughts and prayers out to the many people dislocated by horrible tornadoes in the Southeast just to just, it seems every year now, we're, we're reporting that and tragedy including how many workers in the Amazon warehouse in Illinois, Alex, it was 10?

Alex Kantrowitz (00:05:58):
It was a few dozen were injured and I think we're still counting how many it died. So, so,

Leo Laporte (00:06:02):
So, so horrible. Some criticism of Amazon there, apparently because one of the things that warehouse workers cannot do is bring their phones inside the warehouse. They leave them behind. And why would, why would that may have made a difference?

Alex Kantrowitz (00:06:18):
Well, I think that if you are allowing workers to have cell phones, if you're treating them like human beings and you trust them to do their job, even if they have a phone in their pocket you know, then there's a chance they might have been alerted to the extreme weather heading their way. Yeah. And all indications are, was that this caught them by surprise. And may have even increased the, you know, death and injury toll now, you know, Amazon, I like, I understand the policy and principle. Right. You know, you wanna have people focusing on the task. And you know, I, but they, they monitor everybody so closely anyway. Right. And so you know, you're not gonna have a tornado every day, but in the off Chan, the off chance that you do, you should have people be prepared for the extreme weather heading in their direction or whatever else might be coming to them. So, yeah,

Leo Laporte (00:07:00):
It's really an excellent point these days, not having a phone in your pocket kind of disconnects you from the world, oddly enough. And it is a little paternalistic of Amazon to say, well, we don't trust you. You're gonna be playing words with friends while you're supposed to be picking and pulling. That seems,

Shira Lazar (00:07:16):
That's what people say, who are aren't to be trusted, that they don't trust you because you should trust them.

Leo Laporte (00:07:22):
Interesting point a little projection going on, you know, if I were working in the warehouse and I had a phone, I'd be, what's happen. That's probably the case. Sure. I think you nailed it. Yeah, somebody, some of the chatroom saying this has triangle shirt, factory of vibes. Here's

Alex Kantrowitz (00:07:41):
The, yeah, the bottom line is if they're not gonna let the phones in, they need to be double, triple prepared for the case of a natural disaster. Yeah. You know, potentially heading the way of the fulfillment centers. Yeah. And, you know, Amazon is like, so up on the data, they know every little movement that's going on in the factory. So if they don't have anything built in to prepare them for of this you know, they need to at least revisit those processes because, you know, it's, we're not gonna say there's blood in their hand on their hands, but we are gonna say that, you know, they, they need to do better in situations like this. And that's obvious. Yeah.

Leo Laporte (00:08:11):
A number of GoFundMe have been set up for the families of the six who have passed in that Amazon warehouse collapse in Edwardsville, Illinois. So very sad, very, very tragic. We're sorry to have to report that. There's also very bad news. Security news going around. Some are calling this the worst security flaw in a decade, which in a decade has been full of nasty security follow laws. That seems like a bad thing. It's a zero day in a Java logging library log for J that allows about the worst possible scenario, remote code execution by logging a, a carefully formed string. Now this this log for J is very widely used cloud services like steam iCloud, the Minecraft servers all use it. Anybody using Apache struts is likely to be vulnerable. One of the things this brings up and it's kind of an interesting side note is how much big business relies on open source applications, maintained by volunteers, which this is <affirmative>.

Leo Laporte (00:09:37):
They are working night and day. These volunteers, unpaid volunteers to fix this. It affects any version of Apache log four J from 2.0 to 2.1 4, 1, 2 point 15 has been released is a permanent fix. You can get it. And if you are running a, I, I would hope if you're running Apache Apache struts, you are not only aware of this, but you fixed it. And as far as I know, there was there, I don't know of any serious impact from this. It was caught and fixed very quickly, but a lot of infrastructure relies on a small number of unpaid volunteers in this world. And I, is this something we should fix? Carolina? What do you think

Carolina Milanesi (00:10:31):
Was it's quite shocking. I didn't know that, but given that somebody else said it out to this week and it took a little bit longer to fix, maybe, you know, Amazon should rely on unpaid volunteers too. I don't know.

Leo Laporte (00:10:44):
Yeah. AWS also down and, and much longer than the, the, the, the vulnerability and for JS, this is the, this is the famous XKCD dependency cartoon, which shows all modern digital infrastructure relying. It's a, it's a, it's, it's a block building, relying on a tiny little block, a person, some random, a project, some random person in Nebraska has been thankly maintaining since 2003. Unfortunately we know now this is really more truth than not. Yeah. What about that Amazon outage? How long was AWS out?

Carolina Milanesi (00:11:27):
I think it was a couple of days,

Leo Laporte (00:11:29):
Wasn't it? So it seemed like it was a lot longer than it should be. And it, everybody relies on AWS 

Carolina Milanesi (00:11:39):
Including Amazon. So a lot of those services were were struggling.

Leo Laporte (00:11:44):
It the, the outage was explained on Friday hours, long outage earlier this week that disrupted its retail business and third party online services. One of the complaints people had is that the status page is useless. The problems be. So they're gonna fix that. The so at least if they're down, you'll know they're down, the problems began in us east one 10:30 AM Eastern on Tuesday. Amazon said an automated activity to scale capacity of one of AWS's services hosted in the main AWS network triggered an unexpected behavior from a large number of clients inside the internal network. This reminds me of the Facebook flaw a few months ago. Several AWS tools suffered EC two which provides virtual server capacity. Amazon engineers work to resolve issues, bring back services over the next several hours. It didn't bounce back fully. Let's see, it went down at 10:30 AM didn't back, bounce back fully to 9:40 PM. So a 12 hour and 10 minute hours, do

Shira Lazar (00:12:51):
You get like a gift certificate from them? Or like, you have to pay less money that month than this

Leo Laporte (00:12:55):
Happens. I get an Amazon gift card for $13 and 23 cents. I mean,

Shira Lazar (00:13:02):
So Alexa, I didn't even apologize.

Leo Laporte (00:13:04):
Honestly, when I, when these things happen, you really learn who is relying on AWS, which is basically everybody. I don't know if it affected us. We go through AWS. Disney plus was down. Netflix was down Ticketmaster, Roomba, vacuum cleaners. We're offline, Amazon's ring security cameras were offline. There were smart cat litter boxes, app connected ceiling fans. <Laugh>

Shira Lazar (00:13:29):
The world fell apart. The world died, looks like what's worrisome. What if there were drones and everything. And if they went offline into each other and

Leo Laporte (00:13:37):
Like Amazon's own retail operations, as Carolina was saying, brought to a standstill in some parts of the us internal apps used by Amazon's warehouse and delivery force rely on AWS. So most of Tuesday employees were unable to scan PA packages. It's a bad time of year to not be able to access delivery roots and scan packages. Third party sellers couldn't manage customer orders. The and, and yes, the status page was, was one of the things impacted, oh, well, maybe we shouldn't attach the status page to AWS. Cause if AWS is down, you don't know. So what they did is they put a global banner on the service health dashboard, which Amazon says we have since learned, makes it difficult for some customers to find information <laugh> customers couldn't create support cases for seven hours because yeah, the support tool also runs an AWS. There's that little block, again, a giant tower of blocks this time, not maintained by some kid in Nebraska, but still kind of a little bit of a, you know, choke point a weak link in the whole thing. There's nothing much to report. I mean, this is that's Amazon's explanation. It's fascinating to see how much this is though. The wall street journal headline, Amazon outage disrupts lives, surprising people about their cloud dependency when your light switches stop working <laugh> because AWS is down. Oops.

Leo Laporte (00:15:11):
The, the best one is and this is the the lead for the wall street journal, Kyle Lerner and his girlfriend, since something was amiss, when they came home Tuesday and found their two Persian Himalaya cats, meowing, nonstop, they were using an inter internet connected feeding machine to dispense KBB. But it was, it had been out since the morning, oh, this is the best quote we had to manually give them food, like in ancient times.

Carolina Milanesi (00:15:41):

Shira Lazar (00:15:42):
That is amazing. What

Leo Laporte (00:15:44):
Are we, what

Shira Lazar (00:15:45):
Are <laugh>? Are we, of course they're from California. Yeah. They're from marina.

Leo Laporte (00:15:49):
Dory. Marin Del right. Was like ancient times. I can't Steve Peters of Los Angeles. Also one of your neighbors couldn't tell his Roomba vacuum to clean up the blueberry muffin crumbs during breakfast <laugh> oh

Shira Lazar (00:16:04):
My God. This is like an onion. This is a wall

Leo Laporte (00:16:07):
Street journal. He relies on an app on his phone to Becken the machine I had to resort to getting a broom and dust pad. It was crazy. So Mr. Peters stop, I'm waiting from the wall street journal in St. Louis losing access to Amazon's Alexa service made mark Edelstein feel lonely and helpless. This is weird

Shira Lazar (00:16:32):
People in like from generations, come we'll look back at this either be like, what was wrong or like, I get it. This is like the beginning of the end. This

Leo Laporte (00:16:40):
Swear. Here's a picture of Steve, the man with the crumbs, unable to activate his Roomba <laugh>

Shira Lazar (00:16:47):
Does he look, think he has something a bit more wrong in his life than a Roomba than somehow?

Leo Laporte (00:16:53):
This is, this is worse than what is worse than first world problems, marina Delray problems. It is like Roomba problems, Roomba, like <laugh>

Carolina Milanesi (00:17:02):
In fairness though, it does make you think about the reliance on cloud overall. And if you're thinking about driverless cars in smart cities yeah. And,

Leo Laporte (00:17:12):
Or drones, you know, falling out of the danger

Carolina Milanesi (00:17:14):
That we might have going forward. Right. you know, even if you think about, we were outta power, somebody unfortunately lost control and, and took, took out one of the posts outside our house. So we were out of power for four hours. So nothing in the house was working no lights but because everything is smart, but also because there was no wifi. So yes, like the ancient times I was just using my phone,

Leo Laporte (00:17:43):
Like an animal

Shira Lazar (00:17:44):
Drills. Shouldn't we have drills around this, like, okay. For a few hours, everyone, everything's gonna shut down. Just prepare yourself, see what it's like, see what it happens. We're like, okay, we got this, we have a plan. <Laugh>

Carolina Milanesi (00:17:58):
I'm surprised you didn't hear my teenager scream because that obviously impacted their gaming. Yeah. The afternoon. Yeah.

Leo Laporte (00:18:08):
The wall street journal, I think, is taking a little too much glee in this because of course, as a mainstream media company, they're probably not thrilled with the internet in general. Anyway, the outage for Samantha Sher hog to open blinds in her home, in the Tampa bay area of Florida, she couldn't instruct Alexa to turn on the lights. She, other eyes has to move furniture to reach the main light switch you are living.

Shira Lazar (00:18:34):

Leo Laporte (00:18:34):
Stop. So like an animal she had to open the blinds <laugh>

Carolina Milanesi (00:18:41):
Life is there is in fairness though, there is an accessibility part of this right there.

Shira Lazar (00:18:46):
That's true. That's true. Yeah, Caroline

Carolina Milanesi (00:18:48):
From an accessibility perspective and, and, and that can be distressing. Yes.

Leo Laporte (00:18:55):
Especially if you're a Persian Himalaya cat who cannot find food in your cat feeder. I love, you know, the journal, I mean really way too much glee in this posting these pictures. They just, they just really enjoying this. I

Alex Kantrowitz (00:19:11):
Disagree. I think it's,

Carolina Milanesi (00:19:12):
That's why we feed our,

Alex Kantrowitz (00:19:14):
Yeah, go ahead. That's

Leo Laporte (00:19:16):
Why you feed your, your animals with food.

Carolina Milanesi (00:19:19):
No, by hand. Cause we have two S I wouldn't, I wouldn't rely on something that might miss work and

Leo Laporte (00:19:27):
I'll be dinner's, here's a typically this is typical of a, our crowd and their response. When the Amazon powered lights in his home wouldn't work, he checked the website down detector. <Laugh> of course the lights won't work. First thing you do go online and see if something's down. It was the sigh of relief. He said, but the experience also made him realize how much he relies on AWS. What were you saying at Alex? Is this, is this something to worry about? Or is this just, you know, well

Alex Kantrowitz (00:19:56):
First of all, I'll say that it's somewhat miraculous that it wasn't worse. So this was actually better failure than that's 2018 and AWS failure. Yeah. It was not as bad and this was a hit to us east one which is part of the oldest region of AWS. So if you think about like the way that these things are built on top of each other, you would imagine that if your, a lot of your foundation is in this you know, east one, right. The first region that AWS built in and it goes down, you'd be in trouble. And like actually maybe it's a 10 estimate to AWS that most of this stuff actually stayed up. And, and it was only down for a few hours. Like it could have been much more disastrous. Now speaking about this wall street journal story, I think it's a lovely story. I'm gonna disagree with you on it's pretty funny. I think it's great. I think they really illustrate how much, you know, how do you tell a story, like a server farm, you know, going down in a way that's human and accessible. And, and I happen to think, you know, getting people on record, talking about how, like they had to feed their pets. Like it's ancient times. I mean, that's kinda give them the pulls there. That's

Leo Laporte (00:21:05):
A beautiful, let's be honest. You know, what happened? The reporter just went to Instagram, searched for people having problems and took their pictures. I mean, it wasn't exactly, you know, you didn't have to hit the street you know, and your fedora and with your new pages notebook and and interview people to find this. I think they probably, Instagram is the street today. It is the it's the new street. They

Alex Kantrowitz (00:21:26):
Shoe other on, on the, what was remaining up on, on the internet and made a go

Leo Laporte (00:21:30):
Of it. Speaking of Instagram, Adam, ER, the CEO testified in front of a Senate panel this week, examining social media's negative effects on young people, of course Francis Hogan, the whistleblower at Facebook among all the things she revealed, revealed that Instagram had internal studies that showed that young women had a lower self opinion as a result of using Instagram, that it made them feel bad. In some cases, even suicidal senators of course, took this opportunity to show anger <laugh> and asked sharp questions, Messer, defended the company's conduct. He said, we've got safety measures in place. And, and in fact we don't think Instagram is addictive to young people and and most people are not harmed by Instagram. I guess. I

Shira Lazar (00:22:26):
Don't, there's so many twisted parts. This will, that the government cares about female rights.

Leo Laporte (00:22:31):
Yeah. Isn't that a joke? Too, right. Think of the children it's

Shira Lazar (00:22:36):
All right. Instagram is also like one of they're like the ultimate gas liters in this situation. It's like what you're feeling crappy about yourself. No, that's just in your head. Yeah. Come on.

Leo Laporte (00:22:48):
Yeah. Yeah. Good point. Dick Blumenthal and others created Finstas, remember a couple of months ago, fake Instagram accounts posing as 13 year old girls, which on the surface sounds kind of creepy, but they were to be honest. Yeah. Not what you really want your Senator to be doing, but the idea was to see what kinds of things they, they saw. And they certainly were fed a diet if you will, of you know, kind of bad food suggestions, bad ideas.

Shira Lazar (00:23:19):
I just wish they did this for every other thing we're fighting for. Like let's put ourselves in the, in shoes of people asking for the change. Yeah. Like what does that take? No, I mean, it, it, there's a legitimate issue. It just sucks at Instagram until they accept this somehow then they'll make a difference if they're gonna be in denial of it, because obviously they're liable and there's legal issues around this. They're gonna still fight this, but then we're not gonna see anything change.

Leo Laporte (00:23:47):
Instagram also says, well, look, we adhere to COPPA. We don't let people under 13, we create accounts course, good luck doing that. We ban specific features for kids under 16. But parents, you know, let kids on you, you know, you're an avid Instagramer. Sure. Sex is how I keep up with you. On balance is Instagram a positive is, is in your life. I would say yes.

Shira Lazar (00:24:15):
Two sides of the coin. I think that a lot of my anxiety, I would, you know there is self worth wrapped in it, including when your work is focused around a platform, you can,

Leo Laporte (00:24:28):
You, couldn't not be a Instagram user. You have to.

Shira Lazar (00:24:32):
Yeah. Well, and, and it like, and I feel like there's a lot of freedom. There's a lot of creativity. I connect with a lot of people and meet a lot of people there's empowerment, but there are two sides to that coin, including younger and younger when people are wrapping, their and women are wrapping their self worth around their profiles, or even if they're not building their profiles, but they're like looking at Instagram and the feed and comparing themselves. Yeah. That can be very harmful. And I don't know what the alternative is though. Like one, you know, make sure younger and younger people are not on the platform and that, I don't know how you C create a feed and filter when like that is the world around you. Like the world around you has this. It's just now an amplified version of that. Right?

Leo Laporte (00:25:14):
Well, exactly. In fact, a golly and our, our chat room says teen teenagers have always had depression and body image issues. That, that didn't start with Instagram. I think really the big problem with I is it allows other PE really, and this is the problem. I don't think it's ads. I don't think, I think it's that other people curate the pictures in the life that they project on Instagram. And there's no way you can live up to that. I always tell my daughter, don't judge your insides by other people's outsides, because what you're seeing is presentation. It's not what they, you don't know how they feel. They probably feel exactly like you do.

Shira Lazar (00:25:52):
Yes. Most of the times they do, but you can't force people to share those sides of them they'll share what they wanna share. Yeah. Right. And so it's like, how much is Instagram part of that versus just, this is where our society's moving. That's

Leo Laporte (00:26:04):
How it is. I don't think it's Instagram's fault

Shira Lazar (00:26:07):
Is gonna have this, but I do think that the more that they're there for creators and for users and create initiatives and they do acknowledge that there is a problem then at least that helps, like other platforms have acknowledged, like, you know, YouTube. I mean, you could say TikTok a bit. I mean, they're all part of the problem, but the more Instagram fights against this, the more they just seem delusional and, and continuing to propagate it. Right.

Leo Laporte (00:26:36):
And I remember, I'm sure you do too Carolina, the days of Twiggy and Kate MOS, these super thin super models, which caused eating, you know, eating disorders to ripple throughout the world. Cuz everybody thought, oh, well that's the standard for beauty is, is you know, concentration camp thin you have teenage daughters. Right.

Carolina Milanesi (00:26:56):
I have a child. Yeah. and they they were born a girl and gender fluid and that brings a whole different layer of I guess complication in as much as where, you know, they see themselves who they associated themselves with and do they use Instagram? So they had an account that had, was a private account when the turn 13 they could not be least interesting now interested and they actually, that's probably good want. Yeah, well, but what is fascinating to me is why and, and I do think that here is, is 100% spot when she says that the, the Instagram should start with acknowledging there is a problem cuz they're spending more time and resources fighting that versus acknowledging him and trying to solve it. The reason why my, my kid is no longer interested is because it feels like TV.

Carolina Milanesi (00:28:04):
It feels unreal. Mm-Hmm <affirmative> and what they actually want is a subscription Toor, cuz they want a community. They want people that they want to communicate with that are you know, similarly money did have share interests and all of that. And you know, it is fascinating to me how I think the younger generation in a ways is more savvy to understand what's real and what isn't. But at the same time, it's true depression and you know, problem with, with self-image and weight and so forth has always been there. But its one thing to see it in your school, your class, your is one other thing to see models and actresses because that's the idea of beauty and that is still there. All of that is still there plus Instagram, right? Because the idea of beauty is still the, the Finn and the perfect and it's still mostly white and blonde and all of that. Right. versus representing the diverse world that we live in. So that's the part where I think my child being, you know, mixed race and, and, and gender fluid could not actually find what they were looking for from an Instagram perspective.

Leo Laporte (00:29:24):
I do think the world might be changing, you know, a in the spring Unilever they make dove and all the, and a lot of brands of soap and so forth said, we're not gonna use the word normal anymore in any of our products or advertising

Carolina Milanesi (00:29:39):
Boy is normal.

Leo Laporte (00:29:40):
<Laugh> because there is no, you know, to say normal is that this is normative. This is what everybody should be like. Yeah. And I think that that's that's recognizing the truth. And I think that's a, so I think there is more awareness

Carolina Milanesi (00:29:54):
Of that. I hope there is, but, and I completely agree with you Instagram need and fight it. This is an, an opportunity to make a difference to help fix it. So yeah, I don't, and it certainly is not, oh, we gonna give advice as to many how many hours you should spend and we encourage you to take a break. Really

Leo Laporte (00:30:14):
Tiktok does that too. I hit that every time on TikTok. There's a, <laugh> every time three in the morning, I'm scrolling doom, scrolling forever. And finally guy comes on and says, you know, you really? I swear to God, I don't know. Have you ever seen this? Sure. You must have guy comes on. I have never seen this. Oh yeah. One of the Tacs comes up. It's a guy saying, you know, you really ought to get something to drink, take a break. Okay, come walk, move your body, move your body, walk away from the TikTok buddy. But by then, I've already gone 300 miles down the well, and there's no coming out. <Laugh> Instagram. There's a, go ahead, Alex.

Alex Kantrowitz (00:30:49):
I would just say that there's an important difference between the apps that we haven't covered in this discussion, which is something that came out in Facebook's own research where Facebook is not like TikTok and that people come to Facebook and Instagram in particular to compare themselves a others. Oh. Whereas they go to TikTok for entertainment, entertainment. Yeah. Go to Twitter for news. And Facebook knows that this comparison part of the app is actually a real problem. It's what they say in their own documents. And I think it should have been a focus in the hearing. But of course it wasn't because you know, when it comes to legislators, I don't think there's, you know, anyone less effect than Richard Blumenthal. Right. It doesn't really seem very interested in doing

Leo Laporte (00:31:26):
Anything. Well, nor am I I'm. I mean, I'm, I'm, I've been down this road long enough to not compare myself to people on Facebook or Instagram mm-hmm <affirmative> or TikTok. But yeah, if you're 13 or 14, you're trying to figure out what life is all about. I can't imagine growing with that, those signals constantly flooding in on you. Absolutely.

Carolina Milanesi (00:31:47):
By, in fairness, there is a societal part to, to this because you are at that age, starting from school, you are encouraged to compare yourself to others. That's right. And I'm not, you know, I'm not obviously comparing schools with Instagram, but I I'm saying from really from a, a broader societal perspective, I think we,

Leo Laporte (00:32:08):
It's not, it's not schools. It's, it's the peer group. It's peer pressure. You should be like us. You should be like the cool, those are the cool girls. Why don't you look like them? Schools try sometimes some schools cause schools try to fight that. But I think that that's you're right. Carolyn that's. I know, I,

Carolina Milanesi (00:32:24):
I do think that is the education system too, where, you know, you have a score and you, you need to fit into some parameters and sure. You know, it they're outliers either because you're behind or you are, you know, know you're ahead of others and, and you are getting into that still, you know, what is considered normal or average versus not. So I, you know, I, it is been fascinating. One of the things that we did as well over the past few years was to, to switch from school, to homeschooling spending a year almost de-schooling. And in terms of, you know, asking questions and, and feeling that you can fail and you don't have to get it right. That the process that you go through in working something out, whether it is math or science or whatever is as important as getting the final and, and right answer. Right. you know, it is quite fascinating.

Leo Laporte (00:33:27):
So actually this is something that COVID has in a way brought up certainly in the workplace. And I think our schools are very much like workplaces in the sense that they have an industrial era mentality of you come in, we get you to fit into the mold. Yep. And we crank out people that fit into society. And it's all about getting you, you know, mu down the the sharp bits so that you fit and that industrial era mentality, whether it's in work or in schooling was a little bit challenged. I think, during the pandemic, but kids had to go home, they had to do zoom. They weren't surrounded by their peers. And the teachers were no longer really able to <laugh> to squish the sharp points out quite as much. Offices had to let workers go home and work from home. And now as we, you start to emerge from COVID and I'm sure you might might say we are not emerging yet, but as, as we hope we start to emerge from COVID, I think the world's gonna be a very different place and be maybe schooling. They'll take an opportunity for schooling to rethink how it works. I know a lot of kids are still zooming to school.

Leo Laporte (00:34:42):
So here's an opportunity, Alex, do you see that in tech, you see, you must see that in tech companies kind of reassessing post COVID.

Alex Kantrowitz (00:34:51):
Yeah. Well, I, I think that, like, we all know that the hybrid workplace is gonna be the way that we move forward from this. And we're never gonna go back to five days in the office, mandatory for everyone inside every company. I think that's over. I, I think it's pretty good, honestly. Like, you know, we, we've now realized that there's a balance where we can, you know, look what what's happened with the economy. Since we went into lockdown, you know, been in on an amazing run. And of course, some of that has to do with federal stimulus, but you can't tell me that productivity in the economy has slowed down in noticeable way. If anything, it seems like it's the opposite. So we should give workers the opportunity to spend a couple of days you know, at home and a couple of days in the office, if that's their decision or maybe you trust people to spend every day at home. Yeah. and we're gonna, we're starting to figure out the ways that we're gonna make this work. For instance, I was just on a, a zoom meeting where we had me and then somebody else remote and then two people in the office together. And they kind of sat side by side on their own laptop. So they each get their own zoom bubble <laugh> and then remote, I had our own zoom bubble. And was it weird? Yeah, it was a little, we, especially for them. But it worked.

Leo Laporte (00:35:59):
We're doing it too. It's hybrid. Yeah. A lot, lot. We're doing it too. Instagram does say they're gonna bring back a chronological feed, not right away. Now I don't understand. What's so hard. <Laugh> about exactly. A chronological feed. Adam said the company has been working on version of the feature for months. See, to me, it's like, the hard thing is a non chronological feed. Chronological means in order, but

Alex Kantrowitz (00:36:28):
Not only that we owe

Leo Laporte (00:36:30):
Go ahead, Alex. And then

Alex Kantrowitz (00:36:31):
They started with the chronological feed.

Leo Laporte (00:36:33):
Yeah, exactly.

Alex Kantrowitz (00:36:34):
So it's like, what exactly are you developing this? Gonna take you, were you spending months on this? You already had it. I

Leo Laporte (00:36:41):
Really here's. Here's what Myer said in a blog post in June, the problem with a chronological feed, the problem is it's impossible for most people to see everything let alone the posts they cared about. So we in our infinite wisdom are gonna tell you what posts you care about and make sure you see those first Shera. You had something to,

Shira Lazar (00:37:04):
Yeah. I was just gonna say, why don't they just have a choice? Like, well, that's, you could have the choice of seeing chronological. You

Leo Laporte (00:37:10):
That's the idea. Yeah.

Shira Lazar (00:37:11):
Curated. I mean, the issue with the chronological too, there will always be a reason to like complain because it is cool that, you know, if you're posting in your creator, people could discover it a few days later, there is a feeling like people are just gonna start like hyper posting, right. Just to be in front of people. Oh, that's not. So itll be interesting to see how our behavior changes in that way, but, but

Leo Laporte (00:37:33):
Then you just unfollow.

Shira Lazar (00:37:36):
True. True. Yeah. I mean, that, that is so, I mean, I just think it make it easier for people to discover stuff from other people. Like, you know, I feel like Twitter does a decent job at that. They're

Leo Laporte (00:37:48):
Not chronological either.

Shira Lazar (00:37:50):
Are they not? I feel like might go on Twitter. Really?

Leo Laporte (00:37:53):
Yeah. Well, that's, that's kind of a matter for debate. I think there's semi there's semi like ecological

Alex Kantrowitz (00:38:01):
They're they're algorithmic. Like they definitely filter that feet with an algorithm and you can choose, but I bet most users don't even know that that option to choose exists. Yeah, that's true. You still actually use it. So there was actually a big uproar about this in 2015, I believe when they said they would introduce it, cuz they started off like Instagram, pure reverse crown. And people like, you know, said that Twitter's live and there shouldn't be an algorithm. And I actually broke the story that they were gonna put an algorithm within the week and yeah, there was a whole thing and Jack denied it and about a million people over that weekend tweeted #R.I.P. Twitter. But I think that if you're user of the platform, you know, now that it's way better with an algorithm without, so I give them credit. It's made the service better. Same with Instagram. I'm pro algorithm.

Leo Laporte (00:38:45):
You're pro I'm anti algorithm. Cause I think algorithm is what gets us in all this trouble that when people join Facebook or Instagram, they follow the people. They wanna follow low, mostly family and friends and they wanna see everything that person posts. But Facebook doesn't show you that my mom could, well, my mom doesn't post anymore, but let's say some relative, my sister I maybe see half of what she sees because you know, oh, it's too much. You, you don't wanna all of your sisters. Yes I do. That's why I joined algorithms are what gets you in trouble with extremism algorithms? What tells YouTube to take you down the rabbit hole of QAN? I think the algorithms are the problems talk it's but I've been saying that for a while. Talk me out of that because you're proa. Well,

Alex Kantrowitz (00:39:33):
Yeah, it's the way you design the algorithms. So I would definitely want something showing me the stuff that I thinks is most relevant. I've tried both the Facebook and the Twitter feed on chronological, reverse crime and then algorithm. And I prefer the algorithm, but it does, it does you know, get into trouble. Sometimes I don't deny that. And I think,

Leo Laporte (00:39:52):
Well, the problem is an algorithm which works completely automatically, right? I mean, this's not a human, it's gonna generalize generally. I think an algorithm's gonna optimize for engagement thinking, well, you spent more time on that post. You wanna see more of that and while that's good for business so here's, it's why I get a lot of bikini videos on tickets.

Shira Lazar (00:40:15):
Oh, GE.

Leo Laporte (00:40:17):

Alex Kantrowitz (00:40:17):
So here's what we're getting. We're gonna get to, I

Leo Laporte (00:40:19):
Thought that I want to Sherra. I wanna explain this. Sure. It's it's not that I want to right

Shira Lazar (00:40:24):
Now you're just, but if there

Leo Laporte (00:40:25):
Is, you told me this yourself, if there is a bikini video, I'm a guy I'm gonna slow down. I don't want to. And it's not what I wanna see more of, but I go, oh, and then I move on. You have, have to actively on TikTok say no, no, no, no. Cuz if I look at that, no, I'll see more of it. You have to man in effect, manipulate the outcome. Yeah.

Shira Lazar (00:40:46):
Yeah. That's why I get all these cards. You know, I get these TA card. Yeah. And like new moon things. I'm like, holy crap. Cause they know you're a hippy. Every psychic is speaking to me for something. Anyway, Alex. Sorry. So <laugh>

Alex Kantrowitz (00:41:00):
Yeah. Well we've only done a couple years of social media algorithm. Like if you think about where we are with where, when Twitter did it and Instagram did it, this all started in 20 15, 20 16. So we're only six years in. So I think that we went from those, these pure reverse chronological feeds to algorithmic feeds. Now what we're gonna go to as a future where you have the opportunity to toggle back and forth, but also pretty importantly, the opportunity for you to tell them what type of feed you want. Yeah. Facebook's even working on something where you can tell it what mood you want it to put you in, you know, do you want it more light or do you, you want it reflect,

Leo Laporte (00:41:33):
That's an acknowledgement that Facebook manipulates your mood.

Alex Kantrowitz (00:41:37):
Absolutely. It definitely manipulate your mood. But the better thing is that it just gives you an opportunity to tune it yourself, to be

Leo Laporte (00:41:44):
Facebook. I'd like be dangerous. Depressed. Yeah. Yeah. That that's

Shira Lazar (00:41:48):
Dangerous. Dangerous. Yeah. Because then it could, what the algorithm is. Zooms is happy with. The algorithms was sad. And then, so you're typically cutting out a lot of content from you know, LGBTQ or bipo communities or stuff that you need to see to be informed. It's like a lot of times the algorithm puts content like that or individuals in those communities,

Leo Laporte (00:42:12):
It enforces filter bubbles.

Shira Lazar (00:42:14):
It puts you in a box. Exactly. Exactly. That's like the danger of this, like, which is what they really need to figure out. Like how can you be customized? How can you give people what they want while not filtering out things that people need to see and get to see. Right. And, and the voices and communities that matter as well in all of this.

Leo Laporte (00:42:34):
Yeah. And I'll grant you Alex, if, if algorithms worked perfectly, I'd be pro algorithm too. Yeah. The notion algorithm is good.

Alex Kantrowitz (00:42:43):
I, I, okay. Yeah. I think it's a work in progress, but I really do like the, the fact that they're gonna let you tune these, these feeds to the type of experience that you want. And I do think it's a good thing. Give people who use these platforms, agency over their experience. And I just found the post. So the, what, what Facebook is working on, and this is still in development, but it came out in the Hogan leaks. So there's four mood that you could pick, recharge, feel good, throw back and cozy. I don't know. I mean like, you know, these, these things

Leo Laporte (00:43:11):
Are cozy, cozy. I feel cozy.

Alex Kantrowitz (00:43:14):
Yeah. I'm into it. Let's try it out.

Shira Lazar (00:43:17):
So you know, what's gonna happen. So like there's gonna be something that comes out like a, with like, okay, the, the what's the, the genre that everyone's looking at on all these platforms and everyone's gonna start playing to that genre. I'm gonna start making my Instagram feed a throwback feed because I see that throwback content does really well. You know, I think that that's really fascinating. Like how do you stop people from then feeding into that type of content that they know works right. Or more people like, and then we're back into the same scenario as we were before. Yeah.

Alex Kantrowitz (00:43:50):
I'm just glad that those options aren't like outrage, you know, fake news <laugh>

Leo Laporte (00:43:55):
Cause that's, I

Alex Kantrowitz (00:43:55):
Honestly really can I pick the cancel experience?

Shira Lazar (00:43:59):
Yeah. That could be a throwback, you know? Yeah.

Leo Laporte (00:44:01):
But, but that's actually what's happening. Right. That's the real thing that's happening. So maybe it is better if you say, look not outrage this week just cozy, cozy. I mean, if you follow a lot of cat videos, that's what you're gonna get. You're gonna get

Alex Kantrowitz (00:44:14):
That's our, it should be the new political slow. Good for anyone trying to change the internet. <Laugh> make it

Leo Laporte (00:44:18):
Cozy. Make it cozy. Cut me some slack. <Laugh> I'm glad you're feeling well. Sure. It's great to have you Sher Lizar is here. Peace If you wanna find some peace. And of course the founder of what's trending still mm-hmm <affirmative> still going strong. What's Yep. It's great to have you, there you go. She's been, she's been a Maven since, since the beginning of the internet. It's been a while. Yeah. You're still quite young, but yeah. You, you, you kind of a founder. I think you're a internet phenomen. That's so, so nice. I appreciate that. I'm glad you survived the big C the new big C Alex. Kreitz also here. He is all about big technology. His book always day one. Is it all about Amazon or is it about more than just Amazon? It's

Alex Kantrowitz (00:45:06):
A chapter each on Amazon, apple, Facebook, Google, Microsoft. But I do look at like the culture of Amazon in particular as a foundation for what companies can do well when they're trying to reinvent

Leo Laporte (00:45:18):
Themselves. Yeah. The, how the tech Titans plan to stay on top from penguin random house of course, available on Amazon. Is there an audio book version of that?

Alex Kantrowitz (00:45:29):
Yeah, I read it. It was the last thing I I did before going into lockdown. Nice. So I didn't, I was able to lose my voice for a couple days and it was

Leo Laporte (00:45:39):
Fine. <Laugh> we'll get it on Amazon then. I always, I like to, I'm a listener. I like to listen also with us Carolina. A am I saying it MI, is it EZ Z? Do you like that? MENA Z. Z, yes. Me lazy. The, a woman of Milan <laugh> that's right. Is that right? Am I making that up? It's close. Close. No, you're not. It's very close to Milan. Yes. Near Milan, close to Milan, founder of the heart of tech and and analyst. And it's always great to have you on as well. Our show today brought to you by podium. Talk about the new world order. The, you know, it's funny in the I don't know, maybe the eighties or the nineties, if you were a business, I guess it was, it started really in the late nineties, you had to have a website, right.

Leo Laporte (00:46:24):
And before that you had to have an answering machine, then you had to have a website. Then you had to have an email address you know, slowly you had to have a up nowadays. Thanks to, I think probably thanks to the pandemic. We've kind of got used to this idea of frictionless interaction with businesses over text messages. And you probably noticed this you know, maybe you, you went to a dentist and as you left, they, they sent you your appointment for the next time you'd be there. Or even sometimes they said, leave a review on Yelp or, or Google. Let, let people know. Maybe you got a bill from a company maybe you've used texting to try to reach a company. So you don't have to play phone tag. This is the way business gets done these days. And more often than not, when you're experiencing that, you're experiencing podium.

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Leo Laporte (00:48:52):
I know I do Julian Asange extradition in his future. Apparently he had just had a stroke in jail cuz of the tension of this, the us appealed the UK a court's decision, not to extradite Asan from the UK. The UK high court has now granted that appeal against an earlier refusal by a UK judge who said we are not gonna extra item on mental health grounds. The UK secretary of state has the final decision. I am really curious what you all think of this. I, I, you know, at first Julian Asange was a hero, right? Wikileaks exposed the us using drone strikes to kill journalists and civilians that was in WikiLeaks. But as time went by, Wiki started to look more and more like an arm of Russian foreign policy. On the other hand, Asange always said, they're gonna come after me cuz governments can't tolerate the information that we post on WikiLeaks and they're gonna find me and they're gonna get me on some trumped up charge.

Leo Laporte (00:50:10):
The us does wanna put 'em on traffic. It's conspiracy to hack and computer misuse, which for whatever you think about Asange and WikiLeaks is in my opinion, exactly that trumped up charge. They're saying Asange encouraged and taught a hacker how to hack over chat. I don't think that's demonstrable he'll face 18 counts connected with obtaining and disclosing defense and national security material primarily in 2009 and 2010. I'm curious what y'all think of this because it's funny as, as time goes by in Edwards, Snowden is in Russia and I'm starting to think maybe Snowden isn't, you know, the golden inherited boy, we thought he was Asange is now gonna be sent to trial in the us. And I'm thinking maybe he's not quite the bad guy. We thought he was Alex, what do you think?

Alex Kantrowitz (00:51:02):
I think this is one of the cases where you have to wait for the trial. I mean, there's a lot of evidence and that the us government's gonna have that we haven't seen yet. Is it possible that, you know, Julian Asange did everything above board? Yes. And if so then he shouldn't be put in jail, obviously not. But you know, if, if there are demonstrable moments where he did, you know, break us law and end up hacking stuff, I think you have to enforce those rules now, what am, what am I rooting for I'm rooting for Julian Sanchez to have not done any of that stuff? Because I do think that what he did was important and in public interest,

Leo Laporte (00:51:37):
He, he, you know, he's being charged because of the Chelsea Manning leaks, he's being accused at least in part for kind of encouraging hacking and stuff like that out in these chat conversations. But these were the airstrikes that I was talking about. I think the inform, you know, when you speak truth to power, power, didn't like it so much. So yeah, I think

Alex Kantrowitz (00:51:58):
Generally we don't wanna, yeah, we don't. Can you get a

Leo Laporte (00:52:00):
Fair trial in the us? I guess that's the real question.

Alex Kantrowitz (00:52:04):
Well, can anyone get a fair trial in the us? I guess I, that was an important part. But I look, I generally I don't know. I, I was gonna say I trust our judicial system. I, there are parts of it that aren't trustworthy, but it's a good system. I mean, some of the tenants innocent until proven guilty people need to be proving stuff beyond a reasonable doubt. Like, let's see what it looks like in court. But again, like the activities that Julian Asan did, I'd be rooting for a, it all to be above board and for him to be able to walk because ultimately we need people that like that, that are gonna be able to stick their neck out when it comes to publishing damning information that governments don't want out there, but is in the public interest, which is exactly what he did.

Leo Laporte (00:52:43):
I feel like we just can't, we don't know and may never know what really transpired. And I don't know if a trial, I hope I agree with you. I would love it. If a trial would reveal that and, and give a jury the chance to decide that based on real facts, not manipulated facts, I I'm gonna cross my fingers on that as well.

Shira Lazar (00:53:04):
If the us tries him, which they are, it's gonna have the us interests at stake. Right. It's like, I, I don't know if I trust the judicial system in that way. Because they know the, you know, the repercussions of then proving that he, it was okay. And he's in the right. I feel like there's a lot of fear of what that means in the future.

Leo Laporte (00:53:26):
Yeah. There's also lots of evidence that Julian Ang is not a good person. <Laugh> although the he was accused of sexual assault in Sweden, those charges have been dropped. 

Shira Lazar (00:53:38):
I just, he could have done something that may, what was ethical in certain ways. And then there's other parts of him that are unethical. I think that two truths in that way can exist. Yeah. I think that there's a difference between being a whistleblower and helping, you know, the common good. And then and hacking just for hacking's sake to create chaos. Right.

Alex Kantrowitz (00:53:59):
I also don't see how it was a, it was a hack. I mean, Chelsea Manning had access to this. Right. Do their job. Yeah. So if that's, if that's the case, then it's not a hack.

Leo Laporte (00:54:10):
Yeah. I, the, you know, the espionage, the us espionage act is notorious for being broad enough to prosecute people. The us doesn't like

Shira Lazar (00:54:17):
Exactly, they're gonna use him to make make a lesson. Right. And like, that's basically it, I don't

Leo Laporte (00:54:24):
Even Chelsea is, is out of prison thanks to clemency from the president. So I just, I don't, I, you know, I just don't know. I just don't know. And I, I wish we could say with some certainty, well, this is good. Justice will be done and we'll find out. And if he's a bad guy he'll go to jail. By the way, part of the extradition agreement is that he could serve his time and Australia, he's an Australian citizen. And apparently he trusts the Australian jails more than the us jails.

Carolina Milanesi (00:54:53):
I, I think it's an interesting conversation to have, you know, at the end of a week where to journalists receive a Nobel prize for journalism and had really harsh words word about what it takes to be a reporter today and you know, speaking truth to power and and, and walking, you know, fin line to get to the truth. And you know, I, I, I think is like you all you know, I hope it, it did everything according to the books and in the name of revealing some of the things that the government has done and because we need more people like that we need, you know, I, I think I'm, I'm a, a new American, you know, I became American years ago. And I have to say that I have my doubts about the check I balances of a system and so I, I hope that you know, he did everything right. And like you are saying, and that there, reason of the, the question I think that has come up a few times is whether it was to his benefit of the benefit of the people, so to speak. And and surely, you know, we have come to understand some of the steps that the government is taking from, from an era aids perspective that we weren't aware

Leo Laporte (00:56:27):
Of. And you're, by the way, thank you for bringing up Maria RESA. She's a journalist in the Philippines Dmitri OV a journalist in Russia, both won the Nobel peace prize for their fight for freedom of expression in very difficult circumstances in Russia and the Philippines. And that you, the there was a great quote from RAPR about how difficult it is to be a journalist today. Oh, I wish I could find it, but anyway, yeah, you're absolutely right. The fight against the media is not a fight against the media said, Mr. MYOV, it is a fight against the people. Excellent. without freedom of expression and freedom of press, this is part of the award. It will be difficult to successfully promote fraternity between nations disarm them and a better world order to succeed in our times. Nice to see journalists when the, the Nobel peace prize.

Carolina Milanesi (00:57:25):
And it was interesting how they brought up social media as well, and how in a way, generally star ones who are seeking the truth and sharing the truth. And, and they do that despite social media, right? Because social media is not set up in

Leo Laporte (00:57:42):
That way. Yeah. The Nobel can committee said Ms. REA and RAPR have also documented how social media is being used to spread fake news, harass opponents and manipulate public discourse. Only the 18th woman and will win the Nobel peace prize in its 120 year history. So, yeah. Congratulations. It's nice to see journalists get recognition for what is actually getting to be a much more dangerous profession. Fortunately, not for tech journalists so far anyway, <laugh>, we're, we're all gonna be okay. Big revelation from the information, speaking of great journalism about a Tim cook deal with the Chinese worth 275 billion. Now this goes back in time to 2015, you may remember around 2016 it was getting harder and harder for apple to work in China. Apple's iPhone sales were plummeting apple, apparently cook decided to go to the country, meet with senior leadership, made a five year agreement in secret.

Leo Laporte (00:58:57):
This is the first time that's been reported in 2016 to qua a sudden burst of regulatory actions against Apple's businesses is Wayne ma writing for the information before the meetings, apple executives are scrambling to salvage the company's relationship with Chinese officials who believe the company wasn't contributing enough to the local economy. So cook very effectively took charge here. And now the real question is now, does that mean apple is kind of in the back pocket of the Chinese communist party. They kept this agreement secret the information quotes, a political economist at the university of California, San Diego, Victor, she who says apple is at a global, a company needs to appease the Chinese government because China's a large market and a large production base for apple. But at the same time, the vast majority of its consumers are still located outside of China.

Leo Laporte (00:59:57):
And as their opinion has turned increasingly negative toward China, apple likely wanted to avoid the optics of groveling to the Chinese government. They, I don't know if it's fair to say GROL they announced a investment in DD global, a billion dollar investment. That's the Uber of China. They went to China, Jeff Williams, Lisa Jackson, and CEO cook, went to China to meet with the Chinese government leaders at their secretive leadership compound. John non high, neither side has closed details of the visit, but they signed an economic deal with China worth. According to the information, 275 billion Microsoft, which is not the first Microsoft did similar things in years earlier, somewhat smaller commitment. Cisco did the, the same thing. These deals are technically non-binding, but Chinese officials take them more seriously than officials in other countries. Do they are more binding than you would think an international attorney who writes about Chinese law, Dan Harris from Harris Bricken.

Leo Laporte (01:01:06):
What do you think? I mean, you can then trace this to China kind of moving its servers, its iCloud servers to the Chinese mainland last year perhaps bowing to Chinese pressure to remove VPN apps from the app store in China to even to go so far as to change maps. So is not to afford offend the Chinese government and it's made a difference. Iphone sales have suddenly gone up in China, considerably China's state bureau of surveying and mapping told members of the apple maps team sometime in 2014 or 2015 to make the di DIU islands appear large. Even when users zoomed out, this is, oh my God, this is the there's been a long running dispute between China and Japan over who who owns those islands, Chinese regulators, regulators threatened to withhold of the first apple watch if they didn't change the maps.

Leo Laporte (01:02:07):
So they did. So apparently when you view the DIU islands in apple maps they appear on a larger scale. They still do than surrounding territories. <Laugh> it's interesting. The things governments want you to do Chinese regulators ordered apple to shut down its iTune store for China six months after it launched in 2016, because it didn't have the necessary quote content licenses. But they fixed that. So I get, it's not surprising to hear that China and apple have some sort of back channel agreement, backdoor. Yeah. Backdoor agreements. Does it, I, how do we feel about that? Sure. Does it bother you?

Shira Lazar (01:02:56):
Well, yeah. Yeah. I mean, I feel like it continues to feed into their BS and their continuation of just like putting a choke hold on the entire world. I mean, they literally, it it's it's wrong and it's dangerous, but then it's like, what are companies supposed to do unless they decide not to, to be in bed with them and not, well, some companies,

Leo Laporte (01:03:21):
Yeah, by Google famously said, well, goodbye, China.

Shira Lazar (01:03:26):
And at certain point, someone needs to do that. I mean, like you can continue doing these deals. What, now that deal is over. Possibly they need to pay them. And now even more like until companies take a stand and say like, we're gonna lose this money, but they gain more on the other side of it, like take a against China, nothing is gonna change. I, I just, I think it's really dangerous and it's getting worse.

Leo Laporte (01:03:46):
China revenue from the greater China, which includes Taiwan 68 billion, China now represents 19 that's to, to apple 19% of Apple's total sales. That's a big chunk. Yeah. That's a big market. So yeah, this is the question is, is how far do you go to appease its totalitarian regime when it's that when it's a fifth of your market? Well, you just do whatever. They say they withhold currently privacy features for Chinese users. They comply with the China's data security law requiring foreign companies to store more data of about Chinese users in the country. At that point

Shira Lazar (01:04:25):
Profiting against like human rights violations

Leo Laporte (01:04:29):
At that point, by the way, Microsoft's LinkedIn and Yahoo discontinued their Chinese operations rather than exceed to those demands. They censor the app store and news things like Tianmen square VPNs, LBGTQ related apps blocked. I think that the go ahead Carolina,

Carolina Milanesi (01:04:53):
I was gonna say is, is the price of doing business in China? And you need to make a decision whether or not from a, from a company perspective, it, it is worth you doing so, not just from a business perspective, but from an ethical perspective and who you wanna be as a brand. I'm not surprised that Koch took care of it himself because obviously is a AIG degree is been of supply supply chain. I spent a lot of time in China working with government from a supply chain perspective. So it is very well connected and he knows how to talk to people. I do think that the reason why maybe the, they don't get this scrutiny that they should is because the impact is on Chinese people, not necessarily on people internationally. Yeah. And so, you know, I, people are quite happy to kind of turn the other way yeah.

Carolina Milanesi (01:05:50):
And not be concerned about it. But the question is, you know, how far they go to fit into what the Chinese government is requesting for their own user. I, I don't really think the, the increase in smartphone sales is necessarily linked to the to the, the deal that they made. There was a, a, a boycot of apple for a certain period of time because it's the, you us brand with the biggest presence in China. That came as a result of, of a ban on Huawei here in the us. But it was very sure lived and, and people didn't really seem to you know, care enough, I suppose about wawei not to buy apple in China. But generally, you know, consumers have stayed with the brand. And you know, and the increase in sales has way more to do with the products that they're selling and, you know, the design of the iPhone and so forth that came with the recent models and not necessarily the deal. What is interesting though, is that, you know, the companies that you're talking about, Google, LinkedIn, all of those companies is more on a services side than not the hardware side, apple is depending on hardware. They, they're not really making a great deal of revenue from a services perspective is really all on hardware sales.

Leo Laporte (01:07:14):
Well, that's changing though rapidly with apple services

Carolina Milanesi (01:07:17):
Are becoming outside of for sure. Yeah. But not, not necessarily in China. And they're kind

Leo Laporte (01:07:22):
Of forgoing that aren't they? Yeah. Yeah. Alex, this is something big tech in general has to face. You know, if you wanna be a global company, you're gonna deal with less savory characters, shall we say, and you have to make this decision. How did, how do they deal with this?

Alex Kantrowitz (01:07:42):
Well, I think that the other big tech companies are handling it better. I mean, find me a company that's more SMU, more self satisfied, more, more realistic, more preachy in its marketing than apple. You know, talking about what happens on your iPhone, stays on your iPhone and how you could really trust it. And then you see what it's doing. I mean, getting in bed with the CCP and you know, they have the data storage in servers that are owned by Chinese communist party subsidiaries. So, you know, I think that every company needs to make its own determination about like, whether, what it, what it will compromise to operate in China, because it's always gonna be a compromise. But I think that like for apple to do this and then persist with its marketing messages, to me is extremely hypocritical. And I think eventually it catches up with the company. I mean, it's people eventually start looking at this stuff weird. If they continue to see this news about apple,

Leo Laporte (01:08:39):
That's a really good point. It, I don't know if there would be so much criticism, if there weren't so sanctimonious about it, they've kind of brought it on themselves. In other words,

Alex Kantrowitz (01:08:48):
No doubt. I, I think the sanc Amon you know, it works for them. They're viewed as a luxury brand, but it you know, Steve jobs, but when he talked about marketing, you said, it, it really is. You got a short amount of time to tell people who you are and what you stand for. And if Apple's telling us it's about privacy and safety and security on one hand, and then doing these things that we're seeing in China on the other that marketing will no longer align with what it actually stands for and who it is. And I think it'll fall apart.

Leo Laporte (01:09:19):
Actually, that's one of the big stories this week. We're gonna take a break when we come back does the apple two not do not track button actually do anything increasing research shows? No it's as Carl BDI says in the tech dirt privacy theater. We'll talk about that in just a little bit. This is TWiT Carolina Milanesi here, Alex Kantrowitz, Shira Lazar, it's great to have all three of you. Our show brought to you by OurCrowd. I love this idea, OurCrowd, you know, from my whole life covering technology, I've been watching is people. I know people like Kevin Rose get in on these deals at the ground floor, in these tech companies that they go public. They have an exit and suddenly these guys they're buying fancy watches, driving fancy cars. And I go, how, how do you get in on that deal?

Leo Laporte (01:10:09):
Flow question? Well, our crowd is the answer. Our crowd is actually very cool. This is a venture capital firm who helps accredited investors get in on these early stage startups so they can be there for the big exits. It, it, they, they analyze companies around the global private market. They look at those with the private notice market. These are not companies that have gone public. These are companies that are on under the radar. In many cases, they pick those with the greatest growth potential, and then they present them to you in areas like personalized medicine, cyber security, robotics, quantum computing, and more and state of the art labs and startup garages. And anywhere in between our crowd is seeking out and identifying innovators. So you can invest when growth potential is greatest early, early on. Now you have to be an accredited investor to do this.

Leo Laporte (01:11:06):
So when you go to, it'll ask what country you're in. And then you'll see the requirements. Cause every nation has different requirements for net worth and so forth. But if you're an accredited investor, you're sophisticated enough to say, I want to go beyond investing in the stock market or, or buying mutual funds or index funds. I wanna, I wanna, I wanna get a little taste of the exciting stuff that's happening. That's so up to now has only been available to angel investors and VCs. This is a great way to do it. Our crowds accredited investors have already invested 1 billion in growing tech companies. There have been 46 exits 46 IPOs or sales of their investments. Many of their members have benefited big time from these exits. And now you can, this is again, something that would, I would look at only to diversify your portfolio only if you're an accredited investor, but it's a great way to get in early on innovative private market companies.

Leo Laporte (01:12:06):
Our crowd does the legwork, and of course at no time, are you obligated? There's no cost to you to join our crowd. It's only an opportunity that you can look at accredited investors can participate. There's a couple of ways you can do this in single company deals for as little as $10,000, you don't have to have millions to invest or you can get into their funds. They actually do an hour crowd fund number of funds, those, the entry of that is $50,000. But you do have to have at least $10,000 to invest. Investment terms are gonna vary. As I mentioned, where, depending on what country you're in, what you should do is find out more information, just go to the site, input, the country you're investing from. You'll see what the requirements are, but if you are an accredited investor, I think this is a really interesting way to kind of get early.

Leo Laporte (01:12:55):
Let the, our crowd folks, they've got the deal flow. They're willing to let you in on these deals. And of course, these are deals they're already in, on as well. Join the fastest growing venture capital investment community right now, no cost to join our for just informational purposes. I think this would be, this would be fascinating. Our should mention because I cover these companies. I don't invest in them. That's one of the reasons I've been sitting on the, on the sidelines, watching Kevin Rose get rich, but that's fine. That's the choice I paid. And I'm very happy about it, cuz I probably, I probably lose my shirt. But if, if you, if, if you are somebody who wants to invest, these companies is a great way to do it. really interesting interesting idea, I think right. Let's talk about this.

Leo Laporte (01:13:51):
Carl BDI, apple do not track button as privacy theater. We're starting to see Reese search financial times had a big article. It all started of course seven months ago when iOS 14, five came out and apple started surfacing a setting and it always had deep in the settings. Every time you install a new app saying this app wants permission to track you across apps. Yes or no. And of course, when you say it like that, people are invariably clicking. No, in fact, about 80% it's estimated of users say, no, don't don't track me. And Facebook took out ads.

Leo Laporte (01:14:32):
Carl says Facebook cried like a disappointed toddler at Christmas. <Laugh> said, we're gonna lose millions of dollars. In fact, Facebook was smart. They didn't say we're gonna lose money. This is gonna hurt small businesses. They took a full page ads saying this is terrible, but really, maybe it wasn't that bad. All it did was turn off the ID for advertising that apple has the IDFA and what's happened over the last seven months is companies like Facebook and snap have figured out how to track you without it. It wasn't that useful. Financial times says seven months later, companies, including snap and Facebook have been allowed to keep sharing your level signals from iPhones, apple didn't block that as long as that data is. And again, I'm gonna put this in quotes, anonymized, and aggregated rather than tied to you specifically. So all of the information that was tied to your IDFA is now still coming to them, just not tied to your IDFA, but as we know and any many studies have reported anonymization doesn't work, doesn't work.

Leo Laporte (01:15:37):
It's fairly easy to DISA anonymize that information. And in fact there's lots of ways to do it. Companies still can exfiltrate information about things like how much storage you have free, what your IP address is, how much Ram you have enough information that they can fingerprint you. So they may not know your name, but they know you. So this is the question. Carl writes Apple's opt out button is largely decorative helping the company brand itself as hyper privacy, conscious without doing the heavy lifting required of so a shift that financial times quoted lockdown privacy, which is an app that blocks ad trackers. They say Apple's policy is functionally useless in stopping third party, tracking the performed a variety of tests on top apps and observed that personal data and device information is still being sent to trackers in almost all cases. In other words, you check that box, all that blocks is the IDFA. Everything else is still going out. Now I have to say I use an iPhone. I don't care because I, to me, advertisers knowing more about my preferences is not a harm, but I'm not a privacy, you know at a strong privacy advocate Sherra, you use an iPhone. I bet I, I do. Are you worried?

Shira Lazar (01:17:03):
It is worrisome of course at the same time, I feel like there, unfortunately I'm at the mindset, like they're gonna find another way. Yes. And it, it is annoying. Like it is annoying to feel like you're being, and, and I don't wanna feel like I'm being listened to in that way. I feel like if there's a way to serve me up ads that are more relevant for me, then I'm open to that. Like I'm open to supporting small business and all that, but who am I really supporting my supporting small business? Or am I supporting Facebook? Both from Instagram. Both, right?

Leo Laporte (01:17:37):
Yeah. Because small businesses buy ads from Facebook. I mean, yeah. So, and Instagram

Shira Lazar (01:17:41):
And what's that kind of in nature of the game right now. But I, I do think that like, let's be real about it. Like putting this lip service up, it, it doesn't help. And so how do we be more transparent? How do we feel like we're yeah. Opting in and like having the choice, is it possible to actually have that choice? It

Leo Laporte (01:18:01):
Just increasingly feels like this is marketing lip service from apple instead of a genuine commitment to privacy. And that's heartening. I mean, I know Google's snooping on me. <Laugh> I know Facebook's snooping on me. That's their business model, but apple sells hardware. They don't need to enable these people, Carolina. What's your take?

Carolina Milanesi (01:18:24):
I, I have I, I think we have a similar conversation as to what we were saying about Instagram, fascinating that, you know, companies spend this seven months figuring out how to work around it versus spending seven months figuring out how you can better serve me, because I don't have a problem being target being tracked if you're using the information in a smart way that serves me. Right. And, and unfortunately there's a lot of companies, but still don't do that very from an ad perspective. And, and I think that's, for me, I, I'm also not a, a very strong privacy pro person cuz I live on the internet and yeah, I share too much about my family to share. So <laugh> but you know, it is all about what's in it for me, I'm being very selfish, like yeah, track me, but show me that you're using the data to my benefit, not yours.

Carolina Milanesi (01:19:16):
And so I think that that's, that to me is where the conversation should be. And as we talk more and more about AI and how AI is gonna be part of the way that we serve better ads and information in general, by using that even anonymized data points, then do a better job at it. You know, and, and I do draw the line at Facebook. I'm not, you know, I like, yes, I want to support small businesses, but I go and support them somewhere else versus over Facebook. I, you know, I just don't think that is like the algorithm discussion earlier, you know, is that algorithm serving me or serving the platform. And I do think that it's serving the platform now from an apple perspective. I agree. I think that there needs to be that could be more to be done than what they're doing and, and the conversation is also okay, you're so against what Facebook is doing and yet, you know, we can all use Facebook, right? You're so against Google and yet you are working with Google. So I think there are different reasons why people might be kind of skeptical about the privacy pro push that apple has been serving over the past two to three years.

Leo Laporte (01:20:37):
I'm PR I'm probably in, I, I get heat for this all the time, not the guy to talk to about this, cuz I, I think the whole privacy thing is overblown. You're on the internet. My take is nothing you do is private. It's all out there. It is chiefly used for advertising to make advertising targeted. I got, I have no problem with that. In fact, the reason I stopped using Instagram is because I kept buying every third thing that came up, it was so effective. It was much targeted to me. I have so much stuff that I don't want that I bought on Instagram that I just, I stopped using the platform as a result, cuz it was, it was effective, but that's the only negative is advert. It works, advertising works and it's targeted. It works. I, I guess you could say, well, what if government gets that?

Leo Laporte (01:21:24):
And we certainly know that law enforcement has access to a, of information from your smartphone and from carriers. And I, you know, again, it, it doesn't bother me. Now if you were an activist, a dissident if you were gender fluid, you know, maybe you might be more concerned. I'm a white, old white man I'm I got nothing to lose. So I understand that other people will maybe be more concerned, but on the balance, I don't know if this is, I think you're asking a lot to say, I want all these free services and I don't want them to know anything about me. Alex are my nuts.

Alex Kantrowitz (01:22:01):
No. I think you should have the option and that's what I like about this apple update. And

Leo Laporte (01:22:09):
I'm gonna if it did something,

Alex Kantrowitz (01:22:11):
I can't believe I'm doing this, but I'm about to take apple side. Good. I'm taking apple side.

Leo Laporte (01:22:15):
Good. Somebody has to good.

Alex Kantrowitz (01:22:17):
I think that what they do is block the individual tracking if they have broader anonymous and we know anonymous has some issues, but largely anonymous aggregated. And so that advertisers are now advertising to cohorts of people, not individuals. So advertisers are tracking groups of people, not individuals and are able to optimize based off of that. I think that's actually where we want to go on the web where it's not one to one marketing that like a lot of advertisers like to talk about, but it's creepy users, but it's a group, you know, if it's targeted, but not that targeted that you kind of feel like they're listening to your conversations. I think that's good. And I so like

Leo Laporte (01:22:57):
The the Google cohorts thing flock. Yes. That

Alex Kantrowitz (01:23:01):
I think I happen to think that that's a good solution. And I think that I feel a lot better, you know, having companies track me in a group of 20 people, right. Than they do individually, because ultimately like, let's say you take a worst case scenario where an engineer wanted to know everything they had, they could about me and violated all rules to be able to access that information. If they find me as part of a cohort, that's very different than if they find me as an individual.

Leo Laporte (01:23:24):
What if companies said, okay, here's your choice, no privacy. And you get the service for free, or let's say three bucks a month. And you got privacy. Would that be acceptable

Alex Kantrowitz (01:23:39):
In some cases? Yes. I mean, I'm paying for Twitter blue, which allows add free access, a lot of different website. I

Leo Laporte (01:23:45):
Ironically they promise no privacy from Twitter blue, but you get, you get others. Yeah. More

Alex Kantrowitz (01:23:50):
<Laugh> right. So I have no problem, you know, paying for something premium. I mean, I'm paying for it twice actually once for me once for big technology. So six months, six bucks a month to Twitter, I know Facebook's considered making a pay product as well. Yep. I think it gets kind of difficult when you talk about going other markets and you know, when you think about their average revenue per user in the us,

Leo Laporte (01:24:09):
Well also we know really what these guys will do is charge three bucks and still invade your privacy. Exactly.

Alex Kantrowitz (01:24:16):
Yeah. So Leo, I, but I'm totally sympathetic that when someone builds something, you should be able to, you know, give them something of value in exchange for that. And if it's not gonna be, you can be data. And that's why I think that since we're gonna make this compromise on the internet, as it is, let's move to cohorts away from indivi individualized data that can still work for advertisers. And there's this, this storyline, you know, it's very interesting. The storyline that like, you know, there's still collecting all the data and it's working just as well as it had been in the past. I mean, I spoke with advertisers, who've seen the impact of these changes that apple has made firsthand. And I can tell you they're moving their money away from Facebook because it doesn't work as well anymore. And Facebook has, and you know, advised investors that it's stock is gonna take a hit because of it. So I do think that it's actually real. But not real enough that Facebook's, you know, advertising business has gone off the cliff. You and I think that that's a pretty fair compromise for everyone. Yeah.

Carolina Milanesi (01:25:11):
But I think Alex's point about, you know, if you cannot afford to pay for the service, your compromise should not be data is really important, right? Because that's a little bit, the argument that Facebook has been using saying, well, we don't who pay for the service, so we have to do it this way. And we did actually a research when the first time that the idea of paying for surface for, for Facebook circulated, nobody wanted to pay, you know, we serviced about 1500 people here in the, in the us and, and, and nobody wanted to pay, which to me goes back to van service is you know, is, is not critical to people cuz otherwise you would be prepared to pay. But what is fascinating is that we talk a lot about privacy and and data being used online. But I can tell you that in my move from California to, to Georgia I have no idea how, what I checked to have every mortgage company, every moving company, everything that

Leo Laporte (01:26:16):
Somehow they know

Carolina Milanesi (01:26:18):
<Laugh> yes they do. And clearly I, I've not done it online, but because everything was coming through my mailbox. Wow. So, you know, it's not just online is real life too. And, and that continues, you know, even now with services being pitched and whatnot. So there, there, you know, old fashion distribution lists still exist.

Leo Laporte (01:26:41):
Yeah. Oh gosh. Yes. you know, I'm a little sympathetic advertisers, wanna reach people who are moving. So they figure out they buy mailing lists. They, they figure out did it bother you or getting mailing about that?

Carolina Milanesi (01:26:56):
It doesn't bother me, but it, it really made me realize that we are getting so hung up on, on the online parts of it. And you know, is digitizing something that we've been facing for years. Right. It's it just a different medium.

Leo Laporte (01:27:10):
I know. I mean, I, again, I know this is completely a counter culture, but so what <laugh>, you know what, what's the harm, you know, look, you're gonna get advertising. It's not like you, the choice is, do I have ads or no ads? It's a choice between ads targeted at something you might be up to and ads that are just random. Well, there's

Shira Lazar (01:27:31):
A difference between that. Like in spam being spamed

Leo Laporte (01:27:35):
That's gonna stop spam. I mean, I mean,

Shira Lazar (01:27:37):
Like that's the thing, but you're getting all this mail, like we're talking about trying to save the environment. How much people,

Leo Laporte (01:27:41):
Why do they think I want so much Viagra? I mean,

Shira Lazar (01:27:46):
What the bikinis and the

Leo Laporte (01:27:47):
Viagra, what is it they know about me? You know what I'm saying? They know your TikTok feed Leo <laugh>. So, so I don't, I don't particularly wanna ads for Viagra and my spam, but spamers don't care. Spam is so cheap. That doesn't matter what they're sending a spam out. Most spam is not something you'd ever want, wanna buy. But spam is free and cheap those mailers in your mailbox. That's not, unfortunately the us postal service does subsidize it. So it's practically free. It's very cheap. And those ads, those Instagram ads, those are expensive relatively. Don't you think if I'm gonna buy an ad, I want to kind of make sure that the people who want my product we'll see it. Not the ones who don't. I, I just, I don't, I think people are knee jerk about this. They feel like I, I don't want anybody know anything about me, but that's not realistic. We live in the world. People know a lot about you, even if you're not online. And 

Carolina Milanesi (01:28:44):
I don't know, dunno about people are unrealistic. I think that people want to know who knows about them and what they're gonna do about it. Do you know what I mean? Like I obviously I'm online. So clearly I want people to know something about me cuz otherwise, you know, parts of my business model wouldn't work. But, but the, the, that is my conscious decision of sharing data with people versus you're taking something from me. I'm not quite sure what you're taking and then I'm not sure how, you know, companies are using that. And I go back to my point, if you surface, you know, ads of it were actually relevant for me, I wouldn't mind it as much. It's just when you get bombarded by stuff, it really you don't care about. Well,

Leo Laporte (01:29:31):
That's mostly just a complain of how bad ad ad recommendation services are. That's more a software problem than a privacy problem.

Shira Lazar (01:29:40):
They needs to, it is

Leo Laporte (01:29:41):
Regulation. It feels to me, it feels to me like people are childish. Okay? I'm not, not not you guys, but people are childish. Not not you, but other people are childish saying, I want my free services. I don't wanna pay for 'em and I don't want you to spy me. And I don't want any ads. I

Shira Lazar (01:29:58):
Don't. You think there needs to be just some regulation. I think that all this stuff has advanced so quickly that there hasn't been any regulation. And so it's like a free for all. And I think that's what consumers are saying. Like, we need to start sending boundaries or else, then anything can be used and taken advantage of and used for the wrong reason. And I mean like that's the issue? Well, of course

Leo Laporte (01:30:19):
There's always that, and this is somebody in the chairman saying the same of thing. FOPO saying the thing is you think they're only using your info to advertise to you, but what might they be using it for? But as yet, nobody has shown me that's happening. Well, yeah.

Shira Lazar (01:30:33):
Facebook. What about in the election

Leo Laporte (01:30:36):
Manipula. But I knew who I was gonna vote for. I don't care if Facebook shows me ads for somebody I'm not gonna vote.

Alex Kantrowitz (01:30:45):
The question is where you draw the line, right? It's always, it's always, when people

Leo Laporte (01:30:48):
Say that, that Alex, exactly. It's always, when people say that, they're always saying, well, I it's not gonna affect me. But think of all the dumb people it's gonna affect. It's like the patronizing, can you be

Alex Kantrowitz (01:30:58):
Well, Leo, like advertising's always been targeted. So you started by targeting based off of like, you know, the content, right? And, and so if people were watching, you know, people are watching your show, right? Your show is targeted based off of

Leo Laporte (01:31:12):
Content. Yeah, we do it. We do it the old fashion way. We figure if you're a geek enough to listen to this show, you probably want to hear

Alex Kantrowitz (01:31:18):
Some geek. Exactly. And so you can run targeted out, you know, advertising without knowing everything.

Leo Laporte (01:31:23):
No, I don't know anything about our audience, right.

Alex Kantrowitz (01:31:24):
That tunes in that's. And I bet the advertising works really well for your advertising. I hope so. Then you go down the line a little bit and there's, you know, on the internet, we started breaking things down by GE by location, by age and gender mm-hmm <affirmative> and that was fine too. I don't think anyone has a problem with that when you do it, you know, broadly segmented. And then we went another step when we started targeting, you know, by a, by browsing behavior and interests. And then, you know, eventually you could basically pick out the thousand people, you need to reach and find them some way you can target based off of credit card information and all that type of stuff. And so the question is like, when we, when we think about advertising online, we are, we're gonna make that compromise between getting shown advertisements and using free products everywhere we go. And the question is, you know, what is fair for a person to give up in order to be able to use these products? Because, you know, we were able to fun through advertising, lots of great stuff, including this show. And we don't need necessarily to go so granular to the point that people feel creeped out. And I think that's the discussion here. And I think it's a reasonable question in terms of where you actually want to draw that line.

Leo Laporte (01:32:35):
I'm just saying you shouldn't be creeped out <laugh> why are you being creeped out? Just if you want, if you creeped out, go moving a cabin in the woods because it's happening, look, it happened to Carolina. She didn't have to announce she was moving. They just knew. Hmm. I mean, but it's not Carolina. Did that feel creepy? I guess it might have, it

Carolina Milanesi (01:32:55):
Didn't feel creepy. It was just annoying, annoying, because I did a knee. What I, you know, while they were advertising, it would've been much more useful if they told you how much of a nightmare moving Comcast would be. <Laugh> you know,

Leo Laporte (01:33:11):
I think

Alex Kantrowitz (01:33:12):
Honest data, the data shows that people are creeped out by this. If you feel,

Leo Laporte (01:33:15):
Oh, I know they are. They see it all the time actually.

Alex Kantrowitz (01:33:17):
And not only that they're they're voting what, the way that they using these, this apple optout and, and most people are opting out of, of Facebook targeting. So yeah, I think that like largely people are, and you can have a discussion about whether they should be or not. They shouldn't be creeped out.

Leo Laporte (01:33:31):
That's just, that's people get creeped out in the same. They thought somebody was reading their mail when Gmail, you know, was advertising based on keywords in your Gmail and the, and the thing that was creepy was we're anthropomorphizing it like, well, there's somebody reading, nobody's reading your mail. Sure.

Alex Kantrowitz (01:33:44):
Well, okay. Leo, is there eventually a place where like online advertising tracks, to the extent that you start to say, Hey, maybe that's too much or is every single?

Leo Laporte (01:33:52):
No, cuz it's just advertising. If you don't like it, ignore it. People. The real problem. I think people don't like ads. They would just admit this. You guys, you don't want any ads. You don't want any ads. And people use ad blockers and all sorts of things. They don't want any ads. I don't want any ads, but it doesn't work that way because you're getting a free service. That's ad supported like ours. We give people a choice. I mean, they can pay seven bucks a month and, and not get any ads, a tiny fraction of our audience. Does that far more? Probably just skip the ads or, or block the ads or cuz they, I don't want any ads. I don't wanna pay for anything. And I don't want any ads. I think that's a childish point of view.

Alex Kantrowitz (01:34:34):
Well, that's I don't, I, I, I think that's a strong man. Leo, that's not, people are saying they're, they're not saying they don't want ads. They, the real a question is again, like how much tracking should there be? Like if someone is, if an advertiser is tracking my locations, you know? And you know, I just walked into a, a shake shack and Chick-fil-A sends me a message and says, get out of there. We're gonna give you something. Is that creepy to you? Dollar plus I think it's it it's, you know,

Leo Laporte (01:35:00):
It could be a benefit. Maybe you go, oh great. I'd like that dollar Chick-fil-A

Alex Kantrowitz (01:35:04):
I know, I think that specific instances fine, but there are gonna be weird situations.

Shira Lazar (01:35:09):
It's invasive. It's intrusive. I don't think that's. I

Carolina Milanesi (01:35:12):
Dunno if it's fine. I mean, if, if you are a woman and who's seen knows that I'm in

Shira Lazar (01:35:17):
Chi shock. Yeah. It's being normalized. That's weird,

Alex Kantrowitz (01:35:20):
Right? Yeah. So for me that, that specific examples. Okay. But like, yeah, let's say like, you know, see,

Leo Laporte (01:35:26):
It would be creepy. Oh my God. If you got an ad said, Hey, I know you guys are trying to get pregnant right now. Maybe,

Alex Kantrowitz (01:35:32):
Maybe how about this? There is

Shira Lazar (01:35:34):
That, that does come

Leo Laporte (01:35:35):
Up. I know. I guess that is creepy.

Alex Kantrowitz (01:35:37):
What if you walked into a planned parenthood and you get an ad trying to explain to you that the harms of abortion, I mean like, but I think all of

Leo Laporte (01:35:44):
This is really that you just don't like ads.

Alex Kantrowitz (01:35:48):
I disagree. What

Leo Laporte (01:35:49):
Do you want? What do you want? Ads you want like, the ads should just be for barbed wire and concrete and and chicken houses and I don't care.

Alex Kantrowitz (01:36:00):
All right. I go to the map for this. I mean, Leo, think about what, what ads look like before all this targeting, right? Like madman, the whole show is them trying to make beautiful ads. It was all about no,

Leo Laporte (01:36:10):
The whole show was trying to get you to smoke cigarettes. I

Alex Kantrowitz (01:36:13):
Mean, yes, yes. But like it. Okay. Bad example. Again, I'm throwing out the worst one

Shira Lazar (01:36:18):
And drink a lot of alcohol

Leo Laporte (01:36:19):
And drink a lot of alcohol. You didn't want and feel bad about your bad breath because your, your coworkers just didn't want to tell you. But

Alex Kantrowitz (01:36:27):
Advertising used to be nice to look at because they knew that the image and the story was gonna be what was gonna sell something, not the fact that they were targeting someone so granularly on the internet. And I think that we could get to era of advertising with a little less tracking, a little more focus on the creative and maybe we'll have less people hate ads because it'll actually be nice and nice to look at and pleasant to consume. Unlike what we have today.

Carolina Milanesi (01:36:51):
I think I do think it's more than the ads. It is really about what else are you using that data for? And who's buying it beyond others. I,

Leo Laporte (01:36:59):
Well, that's my question though, is, and nobody's ever yeah. I mean, so there's like, people will say, well, what if insurers bought that? And didn't ensure you, cuz you eat a lot of dunking donuts, right? Yeah. But that's not gonna happen because the first thing insurers do when they check you out, before they give you insurance is say, do you eat donuts? They don't. And if you lie about it, then they don't off. So they don't need, I, I haven't seen that's ever happened. There's some sort of insurance redlining because

Shira Lazar (01:37:27):
It's about consent. It's about like how much will they know about you without you actually saying, it's okay to disclose that. Right. And that's the problem. And like the more we move that needle, then it's like there, I think it's the feeling companies and ads controlling you versus you controlling it. And that's the biggest fear humans control.

Leo Laporte (01:37:47):
There is this squeezey business of data brokers who are, are getting all this information, selling it to anybody who wants it often law enforcement collating information from a variety of sources to de anonymize it. So there's this whole you know, sub current of people doing this. But, and, and yet <laugh>, I know maybe it's, again, I'm a CIS white male in my sixties. So probably I'm never gonna be harmed by this. Well,

Shira Lazar (01:38:17):
No, everyone can be harmed because if your data's being sold and used in another way than what it was being, it's their or intended for, I'll tell you.

Leo Laporte (01:38:26):
And that could be harmed for, I sure got a lot of Medicare solicitations in the mail online, everywhere else. Cuz they knew when my birthday was and I ignored it as I, I didn't need to know that information, but that's, that's how the world works. I didn't offend me. And it didn't feel creepy that people know how old I am. In fact, <laugh> somebody took my birthdate out of Wikipedia and I told the chat room, put that back <laugh> cause it said he's 64 60. We don't know, put my birthday in there. What, who cares? I I'm being a little bit, I understand I'm being a little bit provocative here and, and maybe, maybe speaking a little more strongly than the other, but I, but I often do wonder what, what is the real harm? What is the real get Carolina? Give me the worst case scenario <affirmative> that people

Carolina Milanesi (01:39:17):
Know it all. I really don't care about the ads per se. I do care about the amount of information that, so what are they gonna do with it that are gonna have us, I dunno, I, I don't know if it's about, you know, what is gonna end up into a, a machine learning system that will, I dunno, grant mortgage is to people. I, I don't know. I, it is the idea of creating so much data generating so much data that is gonna be used in a way that I don't know, you know, how are you gonna use all the, you know, about me to make decisions about, you know, how you survey, not from an ad perspective, but actually about me as a person that I think is the part that concerns me and yet I don't decide to be offline and I don't decide to you know, not share some of the information, but it, it does, you know, it does concerning, I, I, you know, I, I do draw a line on some of the, the public information that I I put out there. I don't know. I is, you know, is knowing if I had a COVID test and, and, and a vaccine and how you using the information for insurance purposes or, well, here's an example. Well,

Leo Laporte (01:40:39):
That's for public health and here's an example, 23 in me, which has my genetic material. And a lot of your genetic material that an advertiser back in the day has said that they are sharing information with cancer researchers now, because it might be helpful to have all that information so that they can come up with you know, a cure. Right?

Shira Lazar (01:41:06):
See, I'd rather an opt in. Like once you give your information, I agree. I would opt in and then you have an alert that says, Hey, because you've used the service, you can opt in for it to be used for this. Are you okay with that? And being very specific and you get to research and they're transparent. And then every time that they're being, it's being used for a different thing, you get to opt in. It's not like you're like selling yourself and then now they have just,

Leo Laporte (01:41:28):
Yeah. And that's slightly different. Cause I paid them a lot of money for my kind of spurry DNA results. And then he kept the spit. On the other hand, there's a real benefit to, you know, working with AstraZeneca or whoever to create new medicines and so forth.

Shira Lazar (01:41:47):
But you should be able to choose that because that's you, that's your information

Leo Laporte (01:41:51):
And it's body. I can't say that they didn't all for me that choice. I probably in the fine print agreed to that

Shira Lazar (01:41:58):
Probably. But that's the thing is it's fine print. It needs to be more obvious. Right? Right. Yeah.

Leo Laporte (01:42:03):
So even though there's a great societal benefit, like, you know, there may be a cure for cancer that comes out of this. You still say it's, you know, they should asked.

Shira Lazar (01:42:14):
Yeah. Because it's your choice of how you want to be involved in data, these types of things. Yeah. Yeah.

Leo Laporte (01:42:23):
And actually,

Shira Lazar (01:42:24):
Because, just because they're using, if some people are using it for good, how many other people could be using it? Not for good. And like, have these companies built trust. Yeah. Have they all always been amazing and like in good faith, can we say that?

Leo Laporte (01:42:38):
Yeah, no. Well, and, and DNA information is pretty, is different. In one respect, I can't change my DNA and my kids share it. So I'm sharing information, but what if they

Shira Lazar (01:42:50):
Could like then replicate you? You know, it's just like, I

Leo Laporte (01:42:53):
Would love it if they could replicate hate me. I hope they can. I was

Shira Lazar (01:42:56):
Like, what do they do with that? After

Leo Laporte (01:42:58):
I gone, right. The TWiT empire going forever. <Laugh> anyway. Interesting. questions we're gonna take, <laugh> take a little break. What if they could replicate you Sherra, if you could put your, you don't know what they could, if you could pour your mind. You're too young yet. You're not worth read about this. If you could pour your mind into a jar. Oh, <laugh> Carolina goes, Ugh. <Laugh> no is no. My husband would tell you that the world cannot take two of me. So that's fine. <Laugh> live forever. Would it be you? We don't know. You know, it might just be something that acts like you would've acted, but it's not really, I don't

Shira Lazar (01:43:37):

Leo Laporte (01:43:39):
That's really, I's never thought about this.

Shira Lazar (01:43:41):
It's weird. I have, I mean, I watch a good place, you know? Yeah.

Leo Laporte (01:43:43):
I think about it all the time. <Laugh> like, when is that gonna happen? I hope it's soon. <Laugh>.

Shira Lazar (01:43:50):
I mean, Elon Musk Foley has

Leo Laporte (01:43:51):
The answer. <Laugh> I should mention if you hate tracking and you don't wanna be tracked we are an ad supported network we're free and I'm very proud of that. It means it's to, you know, democratic, anybody can listen to our shows or, you know, participate with the network in any way they want, we have an IRC that's open to all we of TWiT forums. We have the mast on instance, all that's free. But if you a would like to support us a little bit or B don't wanna have any tracking and C don't wanna hear any ads, there is an option for you. I do wish more people would join Club TWiT. I love this idea. In fact, if we could, I would just say, let's just be an ad free network and you pay for it. But it, that hasn't worked out so far, but join Club TWiT seven bucks a month gets you all of our shows ad free.

Leo Laporte (01:44:41):
It gets you access to our discord, which is incredible. I mean really a lot of fun. It's a great community. I'm a big fan of that. And you get the TWiT plus feed, which has stuff like, well, Burke spraying Christmas all over the studio on Tuesday. Things like that. All you have to do is go to And you can find out more. And by the way, we also have corporate memberships and we got our first corporate membership. I'm so thrilled. If you wanna know more about corporate memberships, when you go to, there's at the bottom, there there's more, but I wanna really thank David Hickman and the folks at resource management concepts, RMC, They bought 300 memberships for their it and security team cuz they love security. Now they can listen ad free.

Leo Laporte (01:45:38):
Thank you. That's a great way to support what we do and and avoid ads and tracking. See, it seems like a fair, you know, less than a super duper frappuccino a month and you get you get all of that Now, if you are a member, you didn't hear that ad and you're not gonna hear this ad. And you know what you should be said, cuz this is a good product. It's called Udacity. Udacity is actually changing. The world started some years ago, about a decade ago by a Googler who realized that a lot of the people coming and applying for jobs at, even though they had computer science degrees and master's degrees, didn't actually have the raw skills Google needed. They founded Udacity with one goal to give people an online education geared toward taking your technology to the next level, to getting the information about the career you want giving you the skills for that career and they getting the job and Udacity does it.

Leo Laporte (01:46:36):
They're here to encourage your career growth with their cutting edge Nanodegree programs. You could see the references on the website like the Udacity graduate, who was working at a local Nigerian airline, lost his job cuz of COVID decided to turn things around. He applied for the machine learning scholarship program and for Microsoft Azure, within six months, he transitioned into a career as a data analyst. I know so many people who are working now, Microsoft, Google, Amazon, and elsewhere. Thanks to Udacity. Check out some of the Udacity Nanodegree programs, data engineering, very hot right now you could learn how to be a product manager. Every, you know, companies are desperate for this data analyst, data scientist. How about programming for data science, with Python or things that are even more cutting edge, perhaps you'd like a nano a program in AI or flying cars, an autonomous flight engineer, machine learning engineer.

Leo Laporte (01:47:37):
One of the things that's great about Udacity is they work on these programs with industry leaders like Microsoft and Google and IBM and Amazon. So in fact, the teachers you're gonna get are team leads at these companies. So gonna get the kind of knowledge they know you need from experts who are working in that field every day. I also think very important that their courses are project based. This is active learning. You don't just learn. You actually have to build projects. You get graded on projects. You get homework and projects will be reviewed by qualified professionals in the field that doesn't just test your knowledge and solidify your knowledge. It actually helps you build a portfolio, which makes it easier to get that job. Because you've got on GitHub, you've got, oh, I built this. I built that. And that really makes a difference.

Leo Laporte (01:48:22):
It really does. They're gonna help you do that too, but you're not alone. They they've got a great mentorship program. 24 7 mentors, by the way, 24 7, cuz Udacity is truly global. All over the world. People are doing this. They have day jobs. They want to get a better job. You could go five to 10 hours a week, learn at your own pace, graduate. And as low as three months, get that job right away. I'll give you and they have some great scholarships too. You should check those out right at the bottom of the page under resources, you'll see scholarships. There's one from an organization, great organization, one 10 blacks in technology. They teamed up with Udacity to offer part-time online tech scholarships for black Americans who don't have a four year degree to up to 2000 full scholarships for qualified applicants they're available apply today.

Leo Laporte (01:49:10):
Udacity.Com. Again, there's more just go to those scholarships under resources at the bottom of the page. If you're a business, Udacity has an enterprise section. You can upskill your entire workforce with Udacity, very popular for teams, learn more at the enterprise section of Udacity website today. So bottom line get the in demand tech skills. You, you need to advance your career. Udacity, UDA C I T Y We think of so much for the support of our show. Let's see here back to work, the advertising segment is over. What do you, if you start to see more and more reports of at Tesla's full self-driving vehicles going off the road, hitting things crashing you gotta wonder autonomy is still quite a ways off Mercedes-Benz has received the first world's first approval for their automated driving system. Don't get too excited.

Leo Laporte (01:50:15):
It's only for certain areas of the Autobon in the new S class and EQs sedans. You have to go in these geofence stretches of highway on the Autobon and, and this is really the, the deal killer. As far as I'm concerned, you can only go 37 miles an hour. <Laugh> that's confidence, right? I think you're actually more of a hazard on the Autobon. If you're going 37 miles an hour than not really these are designed for stop and go traffic heavy traffic and geofenced areas of the highway, but they got government approval. These, this is the first level three self-driving system that actually satisfies the Germany's federal motor transport authority that the system is safe. I don't know if they'd approve Tesla's full self-driving. I have a feeling not

Shira Lazar (01:51:10):
I don't need some confident D bag on the road thinking I'm self-driving car until I'm the person like in front of him or her of them. You know what I mean? Like that, that's the thing it's like, you feel so confident because of this technology and then lo and beholds, guess what

Leo Laporte (01:51:27):
Shouldn't you are in the beta program too Sherra. <Laugh> that guy behind you. He's not steering. Good luck. <Laugh>

Shira Lazar (01:51:36):
Right. And then like that one time they fall asleep. They're on call. Maybe they're I don't know, making out because they're in a self-driving car

Leo Laporte (01:51:45):
Or here's another nice feature of the Tesla playing video game.

Shira Lazar (01:51:50):
<Laugh> yeah, no, we don't need, we do enough of that. You don't need to do that while you're driving. Like that does not help anyone.

Leo Laporte (01:51:56):
Drivers can play video games while their car's moving most, you know, most of the time to the no hell to the, no, most of the time, when you have these kind of big displays, you have a cutoff that says, well, you're driving. You can't be doing that. Tesla, this is in model threes. Oh, that's not for the driver. That's for the passenger. You know, they only have one big screen in the middle. The automaker added the games in an over the year software update this summer, but they can be played by a passenger in fuel view of the driver or oh, by the driver. So either way it's kind of distracting. I, you know, I feel like it, Elon just says passenger doesn't have a phone whereby can yeah, come on. Yeah. Yeah. That's true. Yeah. Tesla and his chief executive Elon Musk did not respond to several queries from the New York times about the video games and whether they could jeopardize safety. Elon's very available. If you wanna talk about DOJ, DOJ coin, but don't, don't ask him about safety.

Shira Lazar (01:52:57):
It reminds me of the press conference he did where he throws the rock at the car, the cyber truck smashes, the wind DOE.

Leo Laporte (01:53:05):
We were talking about that today actually with Sam bull Sam, the cyber truck yeah. Was supposed to have Bulletproof windows. And so the one of Elon's employees comes out with a heavy metal can

Shira Lazar (01:53:20):
Elon did it too. He was like, are you sure you wanna do that? He's like, Elon's like, yeah, yeah, let's do

Leo Laporte (01:53:25):
Throws it against the window. It smashes. And then Elon has to continue his presentation for another hour in front of a smashed window. Wasn't the best look. The cyber truck. We actually just we were, the reason we were talking about this is the there was a tweet. Somebody was flying a drone over the Tesla factory and a new model of the cyber truck in the parking lot that originally the the cyber truck didn't have side mirrors, turns out, eh, a minor thing. But the national highway transportation safety administration requires that you have side mirrors. So the, I put those on there. It also, oddly was lacking in its original design, a windshield wiper. Now at least according to the drone photo, it has a, like a three foot long one, three foot long windshield wiper. That covers the whole thing. Is, are there two? I thought it was just one in that one. Oh, there's two blades because nobody sells windshield wiper blades that are three feet long. So you have two long blades. <Laugh> all right. I'm sorry. I shouldn't mock Tesla. 

Shira Lazar (01:54:40):
But no, it's okay. It's easy to mock. Here's the Tesla.

Leo Laporte (01:54:43):
Yeah, it is. Well, when you look at this, this is not nearly as aggressive and ugly as the original cyber truck. Although I imagine there's a lot of people who will want to buy this the same kind of oh yeah. Didn't people buy Hummers and things like that.

Alex Kantrowitz (01:54:59):
That's a beautiful truck. You

Leo Laporte (01:55:01):
Like that. Are you gonna get one Alex? It's

Alex Kantrowitz (01:55:03):
Interesting. I'm not gonna get one, but I, if but I would get one. Yeah. If I

Leo Laporte (01:55:07):
Look at the size of that windshield wiper.

Alex Kantrowitz (01:55:09):
Oh, it's glorious. Okay. <Laugh>

Leo Laporte (01:55:11):
Part of the problem is unlike most cars which have rectangular screens, this has a giant square screen windscreen. So you, you know, you need a big

Alex Kantrowitz (01:55:20):
Windshield wiper. I don't know. I just think the angles, the metal, the windows. It's kind of cool. Yeah. It's a nice looking car. Nice looking little triangle window type of thing. Yeah.

Leo Laporte (01:55:34):
Don't throw like porn. It's Tesla porn. Don't throw a cat ball out.

Alex Kantrowitz (01:55:39):
Yeah. Look in fairness a yeah.

Leo Laporte (01:55:42):
In fairness, fine mirrors

Alex Kantrowitz (01:55:43):
Do RO in the do kind

Leo Laporte (01:55:45):
Ruin the look though. Well, they say you can remove them. They're ly attached. <Laugh> wouldn't

Shira Lazar (01:55:52):

Alex Kantrowitz (01:55:55):
Also. You would just look kind of cool driving. One of those things around people will look

Leo Laporte (01:55:59):

Alex Kantrowitz (01:56:00):
Yeah. It's fun. Yeah. And anything can know bounce off of it, except for one of those

Leo Laporte (01:56:04):
Cannonballs don't throw cannonballs at it. Nope. Do that. But otherwise

Alex Kantrowitz (01:56:08):
Yep. You know, you got, I mean, it would be great for driving in New York actually. Cuz like

Leo Laporte (01:56:13):
Everyone has, they'll get outta the way. Yep.

Shira Lazar (01:56:17):
New York, a lot of mountain ranges in New York for the big truck. <Laugh>

Leo Laporte (01:56:21):
No, but okay. This is every knows. This people who buy those, you know, offroad vehicles, they're driving down the street. They're not going up. <Laugh>

Shira Lazar (01:56:29):
The best is the pickup trucks. Yeah. It's true. They're not using it to like put stuff into like, like for renovations or put stuff into the

Leo Laporte (01:56:37):
Back. Other people around here do that Kickstarter. I don't know what could possibly grow wrong is moving it out. Funding platform to blockchain. It's creating a new company develop and distribute the technology. They will reveal this on Wednesday, a Kickstarter will unveil. This is from Bloomberg will unveil a project that will the two worlds hatching, a standalone company to build a crowdfunding system, much like Kickstarters, but based on blockchain technol, you know, you just throw the word in blockchain and it suddenly it's fresh and new. I don't know how that changes things. New company doesn't have a name as far as we know. They're gonna transition it's current site to the new protocol sometime I'm next year behind the scenes. It shouldn't affect how people use the site. You don't have to suddenly use Bitcoin or anything. I am actually I'm I'm banned from Kickstarter because I <laugh> invested in far too many projects that have never sometimes I'll get.

Leo Laporte (01:57:43):
And this happened to you sometimes I'll get at like a thing in the mail. I don't remember buying, like I got this backpack for photographers or something. It turns out I, I I'd give, it was a kick star project from years ago that they finally made something and it was awful hilarious. It was, I never got toots. The unicorn, somebody in the chat room, mashed potato of reminding me of that. That was a a rainbow farting unicorn. <Laugh> no, never got that. It would, you know, I kind of wish I had the idea let I should log on and see what's going on with the tuts project. <Laugh>

Shira Lazar (01:58:23):
Wonder that it didn't get its fundraising goal. Who's

Leo Laporte (01:58:27):
I, you know, I think it did, but I, I think it did get its fund. That's the thing, it got its goal. And, but they still didn't make it. There's no requirement. You know that you make the thing. Let me see all of the things I've purchased on Kickstarter. The solo V2 safety net against fishing, the phone case that does more with zero bulk. The UV. We did get that, John. Oh my, my God, the UV mask. You never got yours. John all day active UVC air purification, face mask. You can have mine. It's so heavy. Like your head down. I did get the hygiene hand antimicrobial brass, EDC door opener. But the only problem with that is it took 'em so long to make it that long before I got it. I saw people using it. They say, oh yeah, it was on eBay for a buck. Cuz they were copied immediately. Where is, where is tuts? The unicorn? <Laugh> I don't there. I did get my F flashes, fun interactive. L E D eyelashes. I haven't had the nerve to wear those yet. Maybe they took tubes the unicorn off, off my list cuz I don't think it's ever gonna happen. The idea was if you could tie it into Twitter oh yeah. Here was a good investment. My very first Kickstarter decentralized the web with diaspora fully funded. This was gonna replace Facebook. You remember that?

Shira Lazar (01:59:53):

Leo Laporte (01:59:53):
Do remember that 2013, $200,000. They raised it's by the way, you can go there. It's it it's it's there it's a website anyway. Maybe blockchain will make it better. Let's he's such an optimist. <Laugh> Michael stray hand wants to go back into space. He says, I wanna go back. I can't get enough of space. Well, yeah cuz you only had like three minutes. Michael Strahan, the host of good morning America, former NFL player yesterday went up with the new shepherd aircraft. The there were actually six people aboard. It's the largest group of people on new shepherd. They experienced a few minutes of waitlist and breathtaking review views of the earth before descending back. 

Shira Lazar (02:00:49):
There's this is the new addiction. Leo new addiction

Leo Laporte (02:00:52):
Space. You got a quarter of a million. Once you get it, you can't get it out of it off the final frontier. Also on the flight, Laura Shepherd, churchly the oldest daughter, a shepherd. The rocket is called a new shepherd new aim after Allen shepherds. First American in space. How many years ago was that? 1960 something. So like 50 years ago the stray hand and churchi Lee both flew for free the other four paid. We don't know how much, but it's estimated around a quarter of a million dollars. It's expensive to do this. Sure. You want to go in a space?

Shira Lazar (02:01:32):
I wouldn't do it.

Leo Laporte (02:01:33):
Would you? I think I would do it too.

Shira Lazar (02:01:35):
It kind of freaks me out though. Like, are you, but it seems like it's pretty safe. Yeah. Right? Well at this point far

Leo Laporte (02:01:43):
<Laugh> nothing's blown up yet,

Shira Lazar (02:01:47):
But yeah. I mean it seems like pretty amazing to have the opportunity to do that.

Leo Laporte (02:01:52):
Yeah. Pretty amazing.

Shira Lazar (02:01:55):
What are you gonna do though? What are you gonna like actually do you're there? Just take

Leo Laporte (02:01:59):
It in for yourself. You just gotta memorize it cause it's gonna be over so soon. So quickly. You

Shira Lazar (02:02:04):
Gotta wear some snap glasses.

Leo Laporte (02:02:06):
There you go. <Laugh> let's see. What else? Suddenly TCL has stopped selling their Google T TV. Apparently. if you bought it, I'm sorry. Software problems with it. They've pulled best buy was the only retailer to sell these Google TVs. They've pulled them all the entire line. Mysteriously disappeared according to nine to five Google due to performance complaints, both the five and six series TCLs or a other TCLs have Roku built in, which works great. In fact, I, I, I, my mom, I got her one. But I guess the Google TV not working so well in the TCLs I guess a word of warning.

Carolina Milanesi (02:02:53):
Well is it though? Cuz some people saying that there was no problem with it, so oh, not

Leo Laporte (02:02:59):
That I want. There's

Carolina Milanesi (02:03:00):
Something else speculate too much, but you know, what do you else is making TVs now? And they haven't actually revealed who the manufacturer is, but they look a lot like DCL

Leo Laporte (02:03:14):
Tvs. Oh those Amazon TVs you're talking about. Mm-Hmm <affirmative> Amazon with Amazon's fire are built in. Oh that's an, that's a better theory. <Laugh> I like that. Let's start that rumor. So TCL, which no one knows, but apparently is done a deal to make TVs for Amazon

Carolina Milanesi (02:03:36):
Was well, it hasn't been confirmed, so I'm totally speculating. No

Leo Laporte (02:03:41):
We're admitting this is a complete rumor. Hmm that's I like it. Did you now there was a great story about how nobody's naming kids anymore. Duh <laugh> I just feel bad for the people who are already named, but you may remember when Amazon picked that there was a very well known Remember that anybody, anybody analytics. Yep. Analytics.

Alex Kantrowitz (02:04:11):
Yep. You could figure out how like many people were going to a website. But the nice thing about it was that it was always inaccurate.

Leo Laporte (02:04:17):
So cause in order for it to work, I remember this and people would to it, number one on all up in order for it to work, the people visiting the site had to be running the plugin on their browser. So it was just, you know, self-selected group. And then they would statistically multiply it by a big number to get the actual number. So apparently in order to use the name, Amazon and they are now shutting it down. Nobody R IP R IP who went out, we hardly knew Y may 20, 22, no new monthly stats will be released going forward. The company said 25 years ago. Wow. 25 years ago, we founded internet after two decades of helping you. Yes. You find, reach and convert your digital audience. We've made the difficult decision. At least Jeff Bezos did to retire on May 1st. Thank you for making us your go-to resource for content research, competitive analysis, keyword research, and so much. Can

Shira Lazar (02:05:26):
They just change the name?

Leo Laporte (02:05:29):
They're gonna actually literally shut down the API. So

Shira Lazar (02:05:33):
It's pretty, there was enough money there at this point. They're like let's just cash out

Leo Laporte (02:05:37):
For Google has analytics that everybody uses. I wonder if Amazon has an analytics platform. I wouldn't be surprised. I'm sure they have for themselves. Are you excited about meta? Sure. Are you gonna get all in on the metaverse and wear advisor around and is that gonna be you? Are you the only, I feel like the hit person. I know. So

Shira Lazar (02:05:57):
I real, I appreciate, I don't know what that says about me or you just more

Leo Laporte (02:06:01):
About me than anything

Shira Lazar (02:06:02):
I think, but I think it's interesting. I definitely think the idea of, you know, doing things on the metaverse is going to be big. You know, I'm getting more into NFTs, are you? And see, yeah. She's,

Leo Laporte (02:06:15):

Shira Lazar (02:06:15):
She's with it. I IM and then different even coins, you know, are then going into NFTs and the metaverse and like different utility coins or companies on the blockchain. I, I do think it's like it's buzzy, but then also it will be functional. I mean, I did a keynote in the metaverse the other week I went to a conference in the metaverse. Wow. And did

Leo Laporte (02:06:39):
A keynote, did you have legs or not? Which kind of metaverse was it? Was it one I did,

Shira Lazar (02:06:43):
But it was, it was, I did, I was on my desktop, so I wasn't wearing anything. Okay. I didn't have to. Yeah. Okay. But I, but the people who

Leo Laporte (02:06:53):
Were attending you were virtual.

Shira Lazar (02:06:55):
Yeah. We were all virtual. We had our avatars and everything. It's just basically like similar to the gaming communities. Right. But it's just like other things that live in the virtual universe. I don't know how much we're gonna use it for like work. I mean like will every meeting be in the metaverse God, I think that would just get like annoying. Oh, I

Leo Laporte (02:07:14):
Hope not. I don't know

Shira Lazar (02:07:15):
If so. I, I do think though community is like, where it's really going shine is within like niche communities where you can like connect with each other, whether yeah. You're part, you've bought NFTs. You're part of the discord. You have access to the metaverse <laugh> or even

Leo Laporte (02:07:30):
You're in clubhouse and that's the trifecta ladies, gentlemen, hat trick. You did it all blockchain, NFT metaverse clubhouse. You got it all.

Shira Lazar (02:07:40):
Yeah. It's gonna be, it's gonna be part of it. Or you know, like, like dating or events, like anything, anything you would wanna do virtually that you can't necessarily do in person to have access to the metaverse experience of that. I can definitely see that happening and then doing transactions in the metaverse. I mean, have you seen the whole real estate stuff in the metaverse that's crazy.

Leo Laporte (02:08:03):
Wait a minute. Are you buying a house in the real world or people

Shira Lazar (02:08:06):
In the people buying real estate in the metaverse

Leo Laporte (02:08:09):
Oh, that's just second life. Yeah.

Shira Lazar (02:08:12):
It's second life. It's like everything's old is new again. Anyone. So reinvention.

Leo Laporte (02:08:17):
Are you old enough to remember second that you play? In second life?

Shira Lazar (02:08:21):
Me? No, I, I was never into that. Yeah. Yeah. But I was also, I, I, to be honest, I've not never been into gaming that much. So when I was in the metaverse okay. And I was moving around someone who was directing me, where to go to get to my keynote. He kept seeing me going in circle. I didn't figure out how to move my body or like <laugh>,

Leo Laporte (02:08:41):
That's a great image. That was really, it was

Shira Lazar (02:08:44):
No, literally I was like moving up and down, seeing every perspective. I was like, how do I just move forward? I just wanna go forward and just see in front of me. I have no idea go forward. So new, but I'm such a

Leo Laporte (02:08:55):
New, I think I saw Alex Cantor was in a bear suit and second life once was that you?

Alex Kantrowitz (02:09:01):
I I wasn't planning on announcing that news in this show, but as long as we're

Leo Laporte (02:09:06):
Here, you're fur. I know you're

Alex Kantrowitz (02:09:10):
After denying this for close to 15 years, I the exclusive

Leo Laporte (02:09:14):
Drop. Did you ever grand theft auto of course. Yeah. Who didn't mm-hmm <affirmative> did it, did you suddenly start carjacking cars in the real life?

Alex Kantrowitz (02:09:28):
Well, Leo, I wasn't planning on addressing this so much. <Laugh>

Leo Laporte (02:09:31):
Wow. Putting you on the spot on this

Alex Kantrowitz (02:09:33):
Ear is not speaking about this. I will say yes. I did do many carjacking and grand theft auto and

Leo Laporte (02:09:38):
I have no regrets and Illinois state, according to eyewitness, new Chicago and Illinois state lawmaker is proposing a ban on grand theft auto because of a recent surge in carjackings, around the Chicago area. He says it's all because of grand theft. And he is going to plans to band sales of the game in Illinois car. Yeah, go ahead. Go ahead. Car. He says carjacking is not normal and <laugh> carjacking must stop GRA <laugh>. I don't know if you live in Illinois and you did this clown in you have my deepest sympathy. He says he <laugh>. This is I'll give you his name. Marcus Evans. He's a democratic state representative. Grand auto by the way, has been around since 90, 97. So if it's suddenly causing a <laugh> search in carjackings, I don't know. He also thanked a community activist early Walker for starting operations, safe pump, not what it sounds like. Security teams are patrolling gas stations to protect people while they're pumping gas, which apparent at least where a lot of carjackings happen. Walker says representative Evans and I have researched, included, concluded. These very young offenders of carjacking are greatly influenced by the grand theft audio video game. I believe there is bipartisan support to ban this game from being sold in a Illinois. I shouldn't laugh, carjackings, nothing to laugh at grand theft auto on the other hand.

Alex Kantrowitz (02:11:21):
Well, it, it, some on video games we've we've suffered too long from politicians that I've been corrupt and, and largely UN UN willing to take on the three evils in society finally. And so they're stepping forward. I called representative Evans for, for going there and taking home with really ING us grant theft audio. And, and I do think that it's time for us to take on some other serious societal problems, for instance let's start to take on the serious epidemic of, of Thiry. And I think we should ban oceans 1120,

Leo Laporte (02:11:55):
All these casino robberies one after the other it's cuz of those

Alex Kantrowitz (02:11:59):
Movies. It's horrible. And, and you know, while we're at it, I think we need to start to talk about the Scrooge of prison breaks. And therefore I'm calling on representatives across the United States to ban the Shahan redemption. <Laugh>

Leo Laporte (02:12:12):
Have you noticed more and more young people are trying to dig holes to the center of the earth and I blame Minecraft. <Laugh>

Alex Kantrowitz (02:12:21):
Gotta ban it. Gotta

Leo Laporte (02:12:22):
Ban it, gotta ban it. They're just digging down. Here's a story that unites Carolina and Alex Italy finds Amazon 1.1, 3 billion euros. Now we're talking cuz a lot of these find 70 million, 12 million big deal, but you know we're talking billions now for abusing market dominance. This is the Italian competition authority. Although I, as I now Carolina correct me, but I like to call it the author got on de de de Marcato <laugh> that's wrong. Conza Conza I love Italian the to Deza Marto. Is that right, sir? Is that pretty good? That's right. It's close. Yeah, that's pretty good. Would they laugh me outta Milan? If I, I said it that way, the, a GCM, they say Amazon's giving sellers using its Amazon logistics fulfillment by Amazon advantages in terms of visibility in sales, including access to its prime label. Amazon says we will appeal, but it is a big fine 1.1, 3 billion euros. Good for the good for the <laugh> try it one more time.

Leo Laporte (02:13:46):
Zao good for them taking a stand big, big news in the us Jessica wars and Wassel is now the chairman or has been confirmed by the Senate to lead the FCC, the first female chair in FCC history. She is one of the best as, as far as I'm concerned personally, one of the best FCC commissioners, she really understands things like net neutrality will be in X FCC chairperson. And amazingly, I don't know how you get this kind of a vote in the Senate as it's constituted today. 68 to 31. So wow, nice. She will it is thought place particular emphasis on broadband access, increasing high speed internet coverage and underserved areas. Amen. Amen. Hallelujah. Congrats. On the other hand, I don't think Gigi son is gonna get in there. She's been she's been kind of, she won't get a full set of vote till after the new year and she is the fifth currently open seat for the FCC nominee from president Biden.

Leo Laporte (02:14:59):
Let's take a little break. We gotta wrap things up. I, we we're going way long. Thank you. You guys are very patient, but let's lemme quick pick break then a final story. Birds are not real and I'm gonna prove it to you. Our show today brought to you by user Now this is real. There is a real problem for 60 million Americans with disabilities. When they come to your website, they can't use it. They can't navigate it. They, the images don't have alt tags and the worst for you. They can't use your shopping cart. They can't fill in forms. They can't use it. You need to make your website accessible. You need to make it ADA compliant. It's a federal law that that says websites are public entities and have to provide equal access to its services. For all Americans dominoes found that out the hard way, the, the pizza big national pizza chain, they said, well, wait a minute.

Leo Laporte (02:15:50):
Our website has a phone number. They went all the way to the Supreme court on this one Supreme court said, Nope, that's separate but equal. The ADA requires accessibility. So the good news is you can do it with user way. User way has an incredible AI powered solution that tirelessly enforces all of those complicated web content, accessibility guidelines. They do it with one line of JavaScript. They could do more than entire team of developers, user ways, AI and machine learning solutions, power accessibility for over 1 million websites, including some of the biggest websites in the world. Coca-Cola uses it. Disney, eBay, FedEx, Walmart, all use user way. And now this top of the line best in class enterprise level accessibility tools available to you, small and medium business owners is I was shocked at how affordable it is. It's we it's less than the cost of the fonts on our, a front page. The Google fonts that we pay for when you scale, you need user way, cuz it's gonna grow with you. If it can handle Disney, <laugh> it can handle you an accessible and compliant websites, not just the right thing to do. It's good for business and Achilles heel for website registration forms, nav menus that leave out millions of people just ask the voice of Siri. Susan Bennett. She's a big fan

Speaker 5 (02:17:13):
User way is trusted by more than 1 million websites and 60 million users with disabilities visit user to learn how one line of code can make your website accessible.

Leo Laporte (02:17:26):
Whether your using WordPress Shopify, it's easy to add. Same for AEM site, core SharePoint, E even any site that's hand coded any site at all. Because if you can add a line of JavaScript that pulls in all the user way, AI machine learning, computer vision, it's gonna go in there. It's automatically generating alt tags for your images. It uses its computer vision to generate image descriptions. You can add to, you can add to it, but it gets you. It gets you started it will remediate complex nav menus. Make sure all your popups are accessible. Even make your colors accessible while remaining true to your brand. And you'll get a detailed report of all the violations that were fixed. Look, check it out, go to user They've got a scanning tool. Just see if your site's ADA compliant. You, you at least do that.

Leo Laporte (02:18:17):
And then if it's not, I gotta tell you, this is the easiest way to do it. User way can make any website fully accessible, ADA compliant, avoid lawsuits. Most importantly, serve a community that needs your help. Just a little bit it to make your website accessible with user way. Everyone who visits your site can browse seamlessly can customize it to fit their needs. You it's it. This is, this is a way to show your commitment to millions of people with disabilities, open up a whole new market and just do the right thing. Go to user I'm a big supporter. Get 30% off. I hear from blind users all the time because of the radio show, our stuff is audio, right? So we have a lot of blind listeners and it's frustrating to go out on the web. A lot of sites need user way.

Leo Laporte (02:19:03):
User ways. AI powered accessibility solution makes the internet accessible for everyone. Visit user They're making a big difference and thank you user way for your support. We had a great week this week on TWI. You know, I was gonna John, can you, do you have that video? Let's play the video. You could see this for yourself. Burke. It's time to deck the halls. Everybody who's watching this on screen. This is the power of Leo port said. I declare it Christmas SCR quick click, click, click, click. Wait a minute. I think it's unbalanced. There's more on the, on the left than there are on the right. Are you the Grinch this year? He was not happy on purity. Now a

Speaker 6 (02:19:48):
Botnet has infected more than 1 million windows machines globally and continues to infect new machines at a rate of thousands more per day is using the public Bitcoin blockchain technology to protect itself from disruption.

Leo Laporte (02:20:08):
This in enterprise tech

Speaker 7 (02:20:10):
For services like ring Disney plus Roku, Coinbase, Venmo, and I get a laundry list. More of these things that are out there. They get less in redundancy and fail over this past week. That's right. AWS went down, maybe shocked to hear it was human error.

Leo Laporte (02:20:25):
Mac break, weekly bad guys are putting air tag eggs on high end vehicles. According to the York, regional police they're losers are abusing their air tags. They's they're putting air tags in your, in your gas or your trailer hit Canada. They stole the maple syrup. <Laugh> like, I just didn't expect this from Canada. According to making the world safe for technology, be did such a good job decorating the studio that we haven't touched a thing, which might explain why I have these strange antlers in front of me. There's a metal deer. I don't know. Maybe that's a rain. Is that a reindeer? Is that wanna say, is that Dasher or dancer or make sure it doesn't hurt you can you, can you yeah, looks dangerous. Doesn't he just, it was so good. I couldn't touch it. He did such a good job. Thursday. This is sure you don't have this yet, but any minute now you're gonna say it happens to everybody.

Leo Laporte (02:21:22):
Why is it so dark in this restaurant? I can hardly read the menu. You're gonna say I this are they making the print on web sites smaller because you are going to, as you cross and it's, I know it's a years away cross the age of 40 suddenly suffer. What we all suffer, which is farsightedness. The inability to read, cuz your eyes get older. And thanks for the explanation just ahead of time. <Laugh> there is a new drop. The FDA has approved it. It will be hitting the market on Thursday and eye drop from a company called Viewy takes effective 15 minutes, one drop in each. I provide sharper vision for six to 10 hours and eye drop. You don't need readers. You don't have to go to the drug store and get, go to the doctor. D Nadel none of you, you don't know Carolina, you might remember that, but I, yeah.

Leo Laporte (02:22:15):
Yeah. So would you use an eyedrop instead of wearing readers? I'm as blind as a bat. So I'm minus 11 on both eyes. Oh my God. You really are. Holy cow. I thought I was blind as a bet. You're worse than me. Yeah. Yep. Yeah. And so, so yeah, it is annoying to wear lenses. And now at the age of 52, having to wear readers as well, it's the worst, you know, it's why I didn't get everybody said you should get that surgery <affirmative> that corrects your nearsightedness. And then I, I did, I talked to my doctor about it. She said, but yeah, as soon as you hit 40, you're gonna have to wear glasses anyway, cuz you can't read. And I thought, well, what's the point if I'm gonna have to wear glasses anyway presbyopia is the condition that that older folks suffer from unfortunately now.

Leo Laporte (02:23:07):
So that's the upside medical science. Amazing. it's gonna cost $80 for a 30 day supply and wow. Yeah. And how much do the Dr. Dean of Del readers cost four bucks and 50 cents and it works best in people 40 to 55. After that forget side effects include headaches and red eyes, but that's, you know, a small percentage of people just in the anals of medical science, a big breakthrough. And finally <laugh> I love this and I actually wanna give credit to the New York times and the wonderful Taylor Lorenz. She is really good on following cultural trends almost as good as you are. Sure. Lizar with what's trending. I was, I

Shira Lazar (02:23:57):
Was the old, you know, I'm the elder.

Leo Laporte (02:23:59):
Yeah. Yeah. You're the Taylor Lorenze of the internet

Shira Lazar (02:24:04):
The before, before her. No, I love her actually. I've known her for years. She does really great

Leo Laporte (02:24:08):
Work. Is she good? Yeah. And you might have seen this now that you're in Atlanta because this van has popped up in in the Southeast. Have you seen this guy driving around in the van that says birds aren't real wake up, wake up birds. No, our governments surveillance, drones. There are no birds and you know, it's kind of credible. He says the birds, they charge on power lines. That explains a lot. That's why they're sitting there. He all, <laugh> he also on his his van, his birds aren't real van as a picture of a bird that shows where the microphone, the camera, the antenna, the speaker, the battery, and the inductive charging coil are on the pigeon. It also says pigeons are liars liars. Last month they protested outside Twitter headquarters in San Francisco to demand the company change its bird logo.

Leo Laporte (02:25:11):
Okay. But I, but Taylor, thank you for telling us, cuz I thought it was real. It's not, it's all tongue in cheek birds. In fact, the, the founders of birds aren't real know that birds are in fact real. It's a parody social movement to to show how people are falling into the rabbit hole of conspiracy. And in fact one of the founders said, if you actually believe that birds aren't real, you got a bigger problem than, than this. A spontaneous joke. They're actually buying billboards. This is the billboard in Memphis, Tennessee note, by the way, the birds puring on the billboard proving. It's true. They're probably trying to, you know, mess it up. And, and it, as our chat room is saying evil IRC is saying if birds were real, wouldn't they just fly off the edge of the earth. What's keeping them on the planet. They're not, they don't, they know better.

Shira Lazar (02:26:11):
Well, yeah, since the, the earth is flat, right? I mean they should know that. Yeah.

Leo Laporte (02:26:16):
<Laugh> here is in the St. Louis, the founder birds, aren't real burning a St. Louis Cardinals flag during a protest <laugh> on top of his birds. Aren't real van. This is good. They actually sell birds. Aren't real merchandise, which I would like to have the money helps them cover their living expenses several thousand dollars a month. All the money from our merch lineup goes into making sure me and Connor can do this fulltime. <Laugh> none of the proceeds go to anything harmful birds. Aren't real. I think it's true.

Shira Lazar (02:27:01):
It it's brilliant. It's isn't performance

Leo Laporte (02:27:03):
Art. It's great. Set

Shira Lazar (02:27:04):
Is brilliant. Yeah. I would like them to be at least giving the money. Like, it'd be fun to have them going to them. Yeah. Or like some sort of nonprofit or like a misinformation news, journalism. I

Leo Laporte (02:27:17):
Don't think they make so much money. I think if they made a lot more, they might. But at this point I think they're barely, I think they just be early paying for the van of the billboards, but you're right. It'd be nice if they make any extra. Let's just, let's just suggest that.

Shira Lazar (02:27:31):
Yeah. But I, it is, it's very smart. I mean, I wouldn't be surprised if like these folks are, get the next comedy central show. Right. But then it's like, what's the next thing they're gonna do, right.

Leo Laporte (02:27:42):
Yeah, sure. I'm glad you're feeling better. I'm sorry. You got COVID. Thank you. But now you're super immune. Like you could just go out in the world and enjoy life.

Shira Lazar (02:27:51):
You know, that's exactly what I'm gonna do. I'm gonna just jump right in.

Leo Laporte (02:27:54):
Yeah. Cough on people. All of that say no, no, don't worry. I've had COVID I'm I'm good. You will be back at work as soon as your test negative. Yes. Yeah.

Shira Lazar (02:28:04):
I'm gonna be working from home until then.

Leo Laporte (02:28:07):
Okay. Where can we find your work

Shira Lazar (02:28:10):
At Shera? Lasar follow me everywhere. And if you're wondering what peace inside live is we create and produce mindfulness programs virtually. And in person, we have a 21 day meditation challenge, which people are buying for the holidays. Love for their family, friends and loved ones. I like it. You put in your information there, we don't sell it off to any sketchy people. And we also have a Thailand retreat coming up in March.

Leo Laporte (02:28:36):
Oh nice. Oh,

Shira Lazar (02:28:38):
I'll have to send that to you. And Lisa,

Leo Laporte (02:28:39):
Lisa, I did your Valentine's day event and loved it. And that was led by that woman who was holding the thing,

Shira Lazar (02:28:47):
Jordan, Jordan, my, my co-founder who's in Thailand, so yeah. That's coming up and a lot more. Yeah. So go to the site to find out, to join our newsletters. We can bring you peace inside. Nice. Look at that. Come on. That

Leo Laporte (02:29:02):
Best beaches in the world, I'm told the islands of Thailand

Shira Lazar (02:29:07):
Retreat. I've never been, I'm looking forward to going

Leo Laporte (02:29:08):
Actually, oh man, can you talk Lisa into this? She'll do it. If you say

Shira Lazar (02:29:13):
Yeah. I'll I'll I'll send her link. Yeah.

Leo Laporte (02:29:15):
I want that sounds great. And and Jordanna will be leading it, but you're gonna be there

Shira Lazar (02:29:22):
Too. Yeah. I'm gonna be there. You know, helping, but also just attending to be honest. Yeah. The itinerary is pretty amazing. Oh, this is incredible. She has other facilitators in other areas that we'll be visiting, who will be, you're

Leo Laporte (02:29:34):
Gonna go to the elephant Haven. I want to go to the elephant Haven. That sounds cool. Oh, please talk glee into this. She listens to you.

Shira Lazar (02:29:45):
Thank you. <Laugh>

Leo Laporte (02:29:46):
Thank you, Sher. I'm glad you're feeling better. It's great to have you. I appreciate it. It it's great to hear Alex. Kreitz big tech trembles shivers in its boots. When the name Alex kreitz comes up, big technology podcast, big technology does SubT for the newsletter. The book always day one, plug something else. What else? Oh, you're muted. Is this us or is this you?

Alex Kantrowitz (02:30:11):
Did you? No, I was muted. I'll let people know what I have coming up this week on the podcast. Bendick Evans is gonna come on. Oh, I love him guy. He's great. Oh,

Leo Laporte (02:30:20):
He's so brilliant.

Alex Kantrowitz (02:30:22):
We're gonna talk out meta. We're gonna talk about whether web three is real or not. We'll talk about Andies and HTZ and what they're doing. And then last week, if you go to the feet, now you can see a discussion between Daniel conman and Yon. Lacoon. I

Leo Laporte (02:30:35):
Love Daniel conman of the thinking. What is it thinking quickly, breathing slowly, best and slow. Something

Alex Kantrowitz (02:30:42):
Like this, which is all about how humans make decisions and then Yon Lacoon who builds AI for, for meta. And they had a discussion that's come kind of academic but talked a little bit about like how the human mind thinks and how you can transpose that into AI. And it was interesting because we started, you know, my thought was we would have a conversation focused on trying to learn about where I was going, but, but actually like, there was a debate about how the human brain works. And then you know, I found that kind of interesting. Like you could learn a little bit about how we as humans think if you think about what it's like to build a brain quote unquote from the ground up when you're building AI. Anyway, it was pretty interesting. So I would recommend people go check it out on

Leo Laporte (02:31:26):
Big my God, this sounds like a must. Listen. That's some great people. Yeah, it was fun. Yeah. We quote vetted ex Evans all the time. He's really smart. Yeah. He's great. Oh, that's neat. Is the, can I get it from big technology dot subst or is there a special place for the podcast?

Alex Kantrowitz (02:31:44):
Yeah. if you go to big technology podcast on your podcast, app of choice, apple, Spotify, overcast podcast, whatever cast you use,

Leo Laporte (02:31:52):
It will be there. You know, this is the one thing we have to fight as podcasters. We've gotta find a better way to, to, to spread the word cause that's right. That dialogue that you just did every podcast in the world, that's how we all end with it. Right? Wherever you find your podcasts, wherever you find your podcasts. I, I wanna listen to Daniel. Connoman he's amazing. Love his book. Ya Ko, I've heard, heard about for years. I would be very curious what he's said, what he has to say. Yeah. So that's great. Good stuff. That's thank you, Alex. Great to have you here.

Alex Kantrowitz (02:32:24):
Thank you. Go always great to be on the show.

Leo Laporte (02:32:27):
Carolina EZ has given me Italian lessons. She's the founder of the heart of tech. I think this whole show, we should just do it. Italian. It's such a good language.

Carolina Milanesi (02:32:39):
Laima oh,

Leo Laporte (02:32:42):
Wow. That is hot. How do you say <laugh> so how do you say so in French they say a computer is an, or, which is a terrible name. What is the name for computer and Italian computer. That's a good name. <Laugh> that's a good name. Why don't the French? Call it a computer. Okay. Computer. But you say computer, you say it like that. You sort of give it a little bit of a, a little romance. So

Carolina Milanesi (02:33:08):
Computer, well, the, the actual word is system informatical, which is similar to the French, but nobody says that

Leo Laporte (02:33:13):
Anymore. Probably nobody says on tour anymore as well. Tell us about the heart of tech.

Carolina Milanesi (02:33:20):
The heart attack is a company that helps tech company really get serious about diversity and inclusion and CSR and not using it as a, as a marketing tool, but really putting their money where their mouth is and, and change the way they operate from a product perspective, as well as to, towards their employees as well. So important. So important. My other work is creative strategies which is a, a tech company consultancy company. You can find me on Twitter and Instagram. You cannot find me on, well, you can, but I'm never on Facebook. And LinkedIn at Carol ESE. And I have a column on Forbes where I talk about technology and the impact on society

Leo Laporte (02:34:09):
I should have. And now we didn't get around to it talked about apple and the changes at apple. And now pretty much everybody who was involved in getting apple to kind of pay attention to equity is gone. And I don't know if that's, cuz Apple's pushed them out or they've, I don't know, thought there's better places for them to be, but it feels like, I feel like that movement has kind of ended sort of, which is too bad. She Scarlet oh, wait a minute. She was gonna withdraw her complaint and now she's not. Oh, that's interesting. She's not. Yep. Oh, she backed down. See, I thought maybe they paid her off. She left withdrew her complaint with the NLRB. No, she's not withdrawing it. Okay. Well I guess we'll be talking about that on Tuesday. Any, do you have any thoughts you wanna throw in then this is this. 

Carolina Milanesi (02:35:05):
They did come to an agreement and as part of that agreement, she was gonna withdraw the complaint. Now I don't know what is going on. So because

Leo Laporte (02:35:17):
She'll have to give up, you know, usually the way that works is they say, we're gonna give you $30,000 in severance, but you have to sign this that says you will drop the complaint and not say anything more. And perhaps what happened is she said, well, take your money and stick it cuz I'm gonna keep the complaint going. Very interesting. Very interesting. I think good for her. That's a brave stand to take and a costly,

Carolina Milanesi (02:35:44):
No doubt. Yeah. I was a little disappointed when I heard that she came to an agreement. Yeah. Cause it seemed that, you know, she fought for a long time. I, I don't know, you know, I'm, I'm not sure I have all the information to make a call what or not what happened is what happened. But it, it was, you know, it was always better not to settle and see this thing to the end.

Leo Laporte (02:36:08):
So looks like actually the NLRB had something to do with it. They rejected her withdrawal requests because apple added a clause saying that she would not slit sit, encourage or incite anyone to follow out file any charge or complaint with any administrative agency or court against apple for one year. And the NLRB said, you gotta leave that out. <Laugh> you can't. That is not even legal. They requested apple strike, encourage or incite. Apple said no. And the NLR be as, as a result said, you don't get to withdraw it because we're gonna pursue this one. So apple, that's just more evidence that Apple's trying to suppress all of this rather than let it resolve itself. Carolina. Thank you. And the heart of tech does important work and we appreciate you being here. It's always great to have you. We thank you all for joining us.

Leo Laporte (02:37:00):
Do the show this week in tech every Sunday afternoon about two 30 Pacific five 30 Eastern, 2230 UTC. I mentioned that cuz you can watch us do it live kind of a behind the scenes feed, audio or video at, watching live chat live at And of course club members as always can chat with us live with all of the animated gifts and all in discord. And they do, they definitely do. <Laugh> after the fact on demand versions of everything we do available for free at our website, TWI dot V every one of the shows has its own YouTube channel for in tech for instance or for the master channel, And you'll find links there to all the shows. And just as my friend, Alex said, you, you can find us. And every pod catcher, all you have to do is subscribe and you'll get it on him.

Leo Laporte (02:37:55):
The minute it's available, wherever fine, your podcasts are distributed. Do me a favor though, if you if you do subscribe in a podcast application that allows reviews, leave us a five star review that would sure help when you've been around. As long as we have 15 years, people kind of forget that you exist. You don't show up on the charts anymore because you know, you're old timers and it'd be nice to spread the word. Let others know that this week in tech is still 15 years later, still on the air. Thank you everybody for joining us. We'll see you next time. 

Speaker 8 (02:38:31):
Another TWiT the doing the, doing the baby, doing it all right, doing the baby.

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