This Week in Tech Episode 898

Please be advised this transcript is AI-generated and may not be word for word.
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Leo Laporte (00:00:00):
It's time for TWI this week in Tech. We got a great panel. Lou is here. Lou Maka from this weekend, Enterprise Tech, the Technologize, Harry McCracken from Fast Company and from a brand new publication. You remember her from Wired Magazine. Louise Saks will talk about SE four, her new job, and Elon Musk. He's got five days to make a deal with Twitter and then he says he's gonna fire almost everybody. We'll talk about the artist who's burning all his paintings if you just buy an nft. And is the iPad strategy making any sense at all that in a whole lot more? Coming up next on TWI podcasts you love

TWiT Intro (00:00:43):
From people you trust. This

Leo Laporte (00:00:46):
Is twi.

This is twit this week in Tech. Episode 898 recorded Sunday, October 23rd, 2022. The alphabetical show. This Weekend Tech is brought to you by Audible. Audible lets you enjoy all of your audio entertainment in one app. Let Audible help you discover new ways to laugh, be inspired, or be entertained. New members can try it free for 30 days. Visit or text TWI to 500 500 and buy zip recruiter. There are so many podcasts out right now and it takes a team of people to bring 'em together. Whether you're hiring for a podcast or for your growing business, one place makes it easy. Zip Recruiter. And now you can try it for free at and buy Shopify millions of the world's most successful brands. Trust Shopify to sell, ship and process payments anywhere. Go to, all lower case to start selling online today and sign up for a free trial. It's time Forwe this week at Tech. Sure. We cover the weeks tech news I have assembled for your dilatation and pleasure, a wonderful panel starting with the Technologize himself, Harry McCracken. Hi Harry.

Harry McCracken (00:02:16):
Hey Leo,

Leo Laporte (00:02:17):
Global technology editor at Fast Company. And I always think of you as our archivist because you are keeping vintage technology alive and I love that.

Harry McCracken (00:02:28):
I'm trying, although a lot of the stuff I'm sharing, I don't actually own. I just find it on the internet, but it is fun. People seem to love it.

Leo Laporte (00:02:34):
Yeah, I got just on Wednesday, Jerry and I drove up to visit the guy who was the executive producer for the site on msnbc, which was I think the first daily network technology show in 1994 or five. And he called me, said, I'm moving, do you want it? It's like a 80 pound giant neon lit sign that says the site. I said, Of course I want it, so we gotta figure out how to hang it up in here. But then he said, It's only on loan when you're done with it, I want you to send it to the Computer History Museum. I said, Do they want it? He said, Yeah, yeah, yeah, It's historic. I said, Okay. <laugh> donated a lot of stuff to the Computer History Museum

Louise Matsakis (00:03:15):
Back when MSNBC really was

Leo Laporte (00:03:17):
Ms. Ms. Nbc. That's right. That's why they did it. I was working at Ziff Davis and they, and they said, If Microsoft's an investor, they want a daily technology show. Can you guys figure something out? And that's sort of what we proposed. <laugh>, not exactly. Also joining us with a brand new job. I'm so thrilled to have Louise Moaks here. Formerly the wire of Wired, not the wire. Woohoo. Big difference. The wire's in a little bit of trouble. We'll talk about that later of Wired magazine, but also now at a very hot new media startup, SE four. Hi Louise.

Louise Matsakis (00:03:54):
Hey, thanks for having me. Back in

Leo Laporte (00:03:55):
Your fifth day.

Louise Matsakis (00:03:57):
No, the fifth day of the site I guess, but I think I've been at the company for I think about a month. But yeah, we launched on Tuesday.

Leo Laporte (00:04:06):
Very exciting. This is the immediate new media startup by the two Smiths. Ben and what's your Justin? Justin, that's right. Not related. And it was for a long time kind of stealth. We knew that they were starting something, but we didn't know what it was gonna be. And now we know it's, what is it <laugh>? I mean, it looks like a newspaper, but it's more than that, right? Is it tech focused?

Louise Matsakis (00:04:40):
No. So we are a new global media organization that is taking a slightly different approach. So I think the maybe elevator pitch is a sort of the FT meets sub stack. So we're trying to break global business and politics stories that have serious impact but we're also doing something interesting with the way that we present the news. We hope. So the idea is to take apart the article. So every story you read on some four right now, at least we're short, gonna hope to experiment as well. But for now the stories all have the news. And then at the bottom there is the reporter's opinion, and then maybe just room for disagreement. So someone who might disagree or another way of looking at this issue and then hopefully a more global perspective on that story. So in a story I did this week, for example, it was the view from Sheen and it was interviewing a source on the ground in China about their kind of viewpoint about e-commerce strategy. So that's a good example. We wanna give you a different way to think about the story and also maybe the way that someone in a different place is thinking about that

Leo Laporte (00:05:51):
Story. So you're gonna still focus on tech, but it's not exclusively tech. When I first heard about it, I thought thought, Oh God, is this gonna be another bright Bart, another right wing? But there there's no political pers point of view on this, right?

Louise Matsakis (00:06:04):
No, yeah. I think the idea is that we kind of wanna have maybe some different perspectives. There might be someone who's a little bit more moderate or has a different perspective on this, but a lot of what I'm gonna be doing is covering China and tech. So

Leo Laporte (00:06:20):
Oh, how interesting.

Louise Matsakis (00:06:21):
Wow. Yeah. For this story in particular. So I think a lot of what I'm gonna be doing is how is this looking from China's perspective, what is maybe what does Africa think of what China is doing or what does Southeast Asia think? So I think that's gonna be a lot of my

Leo Laporte (00:06:34):
Job. I do have one little mention coming from our chat room, and as they do point this out that the sun currently rises in the east, it sets in the west. Your globe is spinning the wrong way at the time. <laugh>.

Louise Matsakis (00:06:47):
Oh my God, that's amazing.

Leo Laporte (00:06:48):
They might wanna, it's a tiny little thing and oh,

Louise Matsakis (00:06:52):
That's incredible. But

Leo Laporte (00:06:53):
This is our chat room in a nutshell. It totally

Louise Matsakis (00:06:55):
Is. It totally is

Leo Laporte (00:06:56):
Backwards. Yeah, they incredible. Yeah, the sun's rising the wrong way on the, That's easy to fix a I just love seeing that. I love the look, honestly.

Louise Matsakis (00:07:05):
Thanks. Yeah, I think the design is really fun. Yeah, I think it's, I don't know, it's a little vintage. I think the sort of it's not a joke, but the line I guess that we have been saying a lot is we're not trying to innovate when it comes to ethics or the core of tenets of journalism. And I think in some way our design is an homage to that. We may be trying to do things that are innovative, but it's a journalism.

Leo Laporte (00:07:31):
And is the focus really on the newsletters? The hope is you'll subscribe to the newsletters mostly.

Louise Matsakis (00:07:39):
Yeah. I mean I definitely think that we wanna be platform neutral to some extent, but we do believe that this is a great way to reach people and to have a direct relationship with your audience. You're not relying on Twitter or on Facebook's algorithm that week. I think it's good to build that relationship and we really wanna have that. Please tell me if the globe is spinning wrong. I want to hear those.

Leo Laporte (00:08:02):
Well, and we should say this is beta, you don't really, have you fully launched now or is this the,

Louise Matsakis (00:08:07):
We've launched, but there's definitely a lot of work to do for sure. We we're out there now and we want people to sign up, but we're also definitely in a phase of we wanna experiment. If you think something's not good, let us know and we wanna be humble about that.

Leo Laporte (00:08:19):
I think this is a really interesting trend in journalism that was in a way kind of started by Stack and Medium, which is kind of celebrity. I hate to use the word celebrity revered, respected journalists covering it directly. Buy line becomes more important. And I think that's completely appropriate. I wanna know what Louise Zaas has to say about these subjects. So I think this is great and all the other, you've got great people, Reid Albu Gotti and Liz Hoffman. You've got great people. So I subscribe to Puck as well. And I think that for the same reason because it was the people that I was subscribing to that I was interested in. So yeah, I think thrills. Yeah, cuz I wanna hear that perspective. That's what we do. You listen to our shows, not because we're giving you the news ever, what the news is, we're giving you perspective on the news.

Hey, speaking of which, we got Lou Maka also in the house, principal engineering manager at Microsoft. He is also the host of our enterprise tech show this week in enterprise tech. And always have fun on that show. Always welcome. It's great. It is always great to have you on Lou, I appreciate it. So a great panel. I was telling them before the show began, I hadn't really put the stories in order and Louise suggested, we'll just sort them alphabetically. So the number one story today is American Airlines is trying to stop popular. You know what? It's not a bad way to organize it, I don't think it's a bad idea. We'll start with the a's end with Y's. YouTube will be the last story. Why not go through it alphabetically? Why not? Why not? Not actually, I don't know if this matters very much, but apparently there is an app, a third party app that flighted tenants love for American Airlines called the Sequence Coder.

It helps you figure out where you are in the roster and where you're gonna be and so forth. I guess it scrapes AA information. It's not official. American Airlines has been blocking it <laugh> when you get on the plane it doesn't offer its own version of the app. It is turned down requests from the app developer to work with him. Jeff, they have to scrape the data from a's computer systems. But instead of working with Jeff, AA has AA get it first in the first order has started to protect its websites with bot detection software that makes it nearly impossible to collect the data. They don't want flight attendants to know this one flight attendant said, according to paddle your own, which I gather is a site for flight attendants <laugh>, one flight attendant said I she'd never seen a company go out of their way to make life harder for their workers. And others said on Reddit that the app was so much more efficient and easily accessible than American Airlines and known software. It's like these companies go outta their way to be adversarial.

Harry McCracken (00:11:27):
And there's so many jobs in this world where your schedule is all important and you have no control over it and don't learn what it is until the last moment. And you would think American would either make it easy or cooperate with a sky or rip off his ideas.

Leo Laporte (00:11:43):
They're actually suing the point guy who was as very popular travel website, airline points website. He was also scraping data using customers American and Airlines Advantage accounts. And AA says that's a breach of its terms and <laugh> luring customers to break its terms and conditions. So they're in court over this. It's a shame when companies feel like they have to be adversarial. You cover enterprise technology. Lou don't companies understand that making your workers and customers happy is the right way to run a business.

Lou Maresca (00:12:20):
I mean, you think that these companies are bringing value to American Airlines and they're doing better than what they're already doing. I mean, I don't understand when they don't have open data policies. This doesn't make any sense to me. I think all companies should allow open data policies. Even if they have to register, they can regulate it and they can offer better value by having third parties do it. I just don't understand it.

Leo Laporte (00:12:39):
Well there you go. There's our AA story. Let's look at what's next. <laugh>. No, I'll pick some more important stories. Let's talk about Elon Musk. It's a little outta order but Elon and Twitter apparently have five days to close their deal. The court imposed deadline for coming to an agreement. Remember Elon, if you haven't been following this, <laugh> offered to buy Twitter. They didn't wanna buy Twitter then offered to buy anyway. The last thing in this off and on relationship is Elon says, Oh I fine cuz he didn't want to go to court, apparently I'll buy it. And now the court said, All right, we're gonna put off the trial, which was scheduled to bring in last week for one month. But you have to come up with a deal by the 28th. And apparently right now, even as we speak on a Sunday Twitter and Musk's, people are talking hard.

Morgan Stanley stands to lose as much as half a billion dollars on this. They have agreed to fund the purchase up to 13 billion. But the biggest story is that one way or the other, lots of people are gonna be out of work. Twitter has said, we're gonna fire 25% of our staff. Elon now has said, I'm gonna fire 75% of the staff. What if this closes? And I imagine they have to get regulatory approval, but if this closes and suddenly Elon Musk is running Twitter, what are the prospects for this company? Harry, what do you think

Harry McCracken (00:14:21):
I should say? There's also these stories about the Feds being nervous about Elon Musk's role as a global player.

Leo Laporte (00:14:27):
He's being investigated, right?

Harry McCracken (00:14:29):
And a guy who seems to be talking out solutions to the Ukraine War on Twitter and so forth. And it was a close relationship with China because of Tesla. So that's yet another monkey rat.

Leo Laporte (00:14:42):
This came out in the court filings. Twitter said on a filing released on Thursday that Elon Musk is under investigation. It didn't say what the exact focus of the probes was and which federal authorities are conducting them. Musk's attorneys provided a privilege log identifying documents to be withheld, the log reference drafts of a May 13th email to the S e C and a slide presentation to the ftc. So this gets more and more complicated by the minute, Musk says he's gonna invite Trump back.

Harry McCracken (00:15:21):
Yeah. When has he officially said that? I mean he, I think he said it was a mistake to kick him off. Yeah, I'm not sure if he's quite gone so far as to say, Yes, I will invite him back.

Leo Laporte (00:15:32):
I should see what the source is for that. But I did see a story that said 75% firings and I'm bringing Trump back, right? So let me see if I can find the source for that.

Harry McCracken (00:15:43):
And on the 75% fire ranges, I think he's also told people he plans to hire more people. So given this is Elon Musk, you don't know what's gonna happen until it does happen.

Leo Laporte (00:15:53):
<laugh>, this is crazy. The Washington Post said that Musk plans to slash Twitter's workforce by 75% Musk. This was I guess in the presentation that he gave to potential investors. So he was looking for funding. Twitter executives themselves say 25%.

Harry McCracken (00:16:11):
It does feel like Twitter would probably be fine with fewer people, maybe a lot fewer people. I think even if it could be run well with 75% fewer people would be incredibly bruising for it to happen. And presumably if your goal is to keep the 25% who are most important and best, this experience might be short traumatic for them, A lot of them will leave two. And certainly one of the primary things I I'm concerned about is essentially the possibility that Twitter, which actually has made a fair amount of progress in terms of managing it. So it's a little bit harder to be a horrible troll on Twitter than it once was that they'll lose all that progress they made. And yes, maybe it will be a place for free speech flourishes but in a way which will leave anybody trying to be constructive, way less inclined to be there. And it will hurt everybody.

Leo Laporte (00:17:06):
Forget Trump, Is he gonna bring ea back? That's really what everybody cares. No, I'm not. I'm kidding. Louise, you have an opinion on all of this?

Louise Matsakis (00:17:18):
Yeah, I mean I have two things to say. I think one Harry is really right that a lot of this looks to me and feels to me and smells to me like Elon trying to find ways to get out of the deal still.

Leo Laporte (00:17:29):
So even with him, even with changing his tune,

Louise Matsakis (00:17:33):
Yeah, I still think that a lot of this, especially when you have really high paid lawyers involved and you have someone like Elon, I just think who is leaking this information and why is a good question. And then I think on the second front about a potential national security investigation, I think that there's good reason for that and we shouldn't dismiss that. For example, fairly recently, I think that the story didn't get as much attention as it deserved. Elon Musk wrote an op-ed in the cyberspace administration of China's quarterly journal. That's literally the propaganda department. And he wrote a nice little article in that journal.

Leo Laporte (00:18:12):
Well, Elon has to love China. They're a big customer for Tesla automobiles. They're even made in China. In fact, I've heard Tesla owners say the best, If you wanna get a model three, get one made in China, they're much better than the ones made in the us.

Louise Matsakis (00:18:26):
He has a lot of business interests. He said all sorts of stuff about Ukraine, about US politics. And the only thing we've really gotten him to say about Chinese politics is like maybe it wouldn't be so bad if Taiwan and China were reunited, right? That's his right.

Leo Laporte (00:18:43):
That's the official CCP position.

Louise Matsakis (00:18:46):
I think the only thing he's willing to say is that might not make everyone happy <laugh>.

Leo Laporte (00:18:51):
It might cause World War three, but well just

Louise Matsakis (00:18:56):
Compared to the way he talks so freely about other topics, it's

Leo Laporte (00:18:58):
Just phenomenal. I mean it's just phenomenal. According to Bloomberg, one of the issues in the negotiations with Twitter, Musk wanted to reserve his right to file a fraud lawsuit after the sale goes through over his claims, the platform's executives misled him. So maybe that lends some credence to what you're saying, Louise, that he doesn't really wanna buy it. This is more just messing around, slowing it down. Perhaps he doesn't want to go. One thing he doesn't wanna be do is deposed. I would imagine the offer to buy Twitter came the day before he was scheduled for depositions. There may also be issues with some of his messages. Remember in discovery his text messages were released. There is some question about the text messages he might have exchanged with much Peter Zako, the whistleblower Twitter executive who was fired and then said Twitter was doing a terrible job and wasn't secure. It's a mess. Can you make any sense of this Lou?

Lou Maresca (00:20:04):
I wanna talk about the people side of it. I think Harry is right in the one thing that think it might be in the past. Once they have all these deals of talking about firing, people are gonna run for the Hill. Who

Leo Laporte (00:20:14):
At Twitter does not have his resume, her resume ready to go.

Lou Maresca (00:20:17):
Right. Who wouldn't? Right? I mean I think at this point you're not gonna keep anybody good and I think it's time to just clean house at this point.

Leo Laporte (00:20:25):
At least a quarter of you're gonna be fired maybe three quarters. The other question is I maybe there's some excess, maybe there's some fat. But firing 75% sounds like you would lose a lot of the security and safety and user safety people,

Lou Maresca (00:20:48):
I hate to say it, the fat's probably staying people. It's the fat that's gonna stay. People leaving the developer, the people that are gonna leave are the good people. The people that are worried about being at a company that's not gonna be run well. So I think that's the thing. People who are worried about their jobs are probably gonna wanna stay to see how long they can keep it right.

Harry McCracken (00:21:05):
Actually the other thing that, Go ahead. Sorry, go ahead. I was gonna say, the other thing that's a little confounding is at the scene, excuse me. At the same time he is doing this, he's talking about how Twitter should be the foundation for everything app that is doesn't just let you send out tweets but lets you do everything else you wanna do on a smartphone. And it's a little hard to resolve that desire with a desire to be 75% smaller staff wise.

Leo Laporte (00:21:30):
Yeah. He thinks there could be a WeChat like app in the United States. He wants to call it x I have to say, some of that may just be more hype about why you should lend me money so I can buy this thing as opposed to something he really thinks can happen. Louise, do you think you could create a WeChat in the us?

Louise Matsakis (00:21:55):
Probably not. And I think that, I've never heard Elon say anything convincing otherwise. Of course who knows? But I think a really convincing argument is that Western consumers have credit cards and they learn to use the internet through their browser. Whereas the whole concept of a super app is around WeChat and Alipay. So you pay through those apps. So once you're have people's credit card information, it's a lot easier to add doctor's appointments and all these other things are booking a table at a restaurant. You can sort of pile that all on, especially to people who aren't used to opening their browser. But it's like we have credit cards, we have big banks. People still like to shop through their browser. So I don't know, I've just never heard Elon actually articulate anything in response to those arguments or say, why is now the moment to bring a super app to the us? What would that add? I already have Uber. I already have the Amazon app.

Leo Laporte (00:22:53):
Well, we'd have one app to rule them all. <laugh> don't, Amazon's

Louise Matsakis (00:22:59):
Not gonna let that happen.

Leo Laporte (00:23:01):
Amazon's the one gonna create that, not Twitter. Of

Harry McCracken (00:23:05):
Course we've seen that out. Basically try to turn all those apps into something reason and everything. App, Facebook and Instagram and WeChat. And oftentimes they tend to launch this stuff, especially on Messenger and them give up on it after a while. Cause it turns out that people want to use Messenger to message not to do anything and everything. It's

Leo Laporte (00:23:26):
Also the case that WeChat grew up in under a communist regime that had absolute control over the populace. I mean, I think without the government supporting WeChat, I don't know if it's the, it exists. And I should point out, there was just an article by JE Young in the MIT technology review, the dark side of WeChat because it's, it's a way for the Chinese government to control its citizens. If you get banned from WeChat, good luck doing anything, Buying railroad tickets, getting your dry cleaning pack. One reason that it succeeded in China is there aren't any, you know, don't have Messenger or WhatsApp or Telegram or Signal. They're all blocked. So of course WeChat, if the Chinese government says you're gonna use it, that's all there is. And it gives them an interesting degree of control, doesn't it?

Louise Matsakis (00:24:26):
I mean there are a few other, Sorry,

Leo Laporte (00:24:28):
Go ahead Louis. Go ahead Lisa.

Louise Matsakis (00:24:30):
I was supposed to say the ubiquity of the payment thing I really like think can't be underestimated. The Noodle cart on the corner is gonna take WeChat pay, right? They're gonna take Alipay. I think when you just have so much of commerce flowing through one app, it's really so much so power have

Leo Laporte (00:24:51):
That. It's also useful to the government because many people get all of their news in China from WeChat articles published on WeChat, not going through search engines. They're not going to read it. They're getting it from WeChat and that Chinese government has absolute control over it. This is a great article if you wanna really understand why. It's something we don't want in the United States after all. I mean, already we're complaining about how big, Big Tech is. Sure. We're gonna let Elon run every transaction. I don't, I just think it's a nonstarter. It's just, and I think Elon knows that. Don't you think that it's just BS intended for the investors?

Lou Maresca (00:25:35):
Yeah, I mean, I think that the writing's on the wall. Yeah, I mean he was asking for what, 30% discount a couple weeks ago now. So now <laugh>,

Leo Laporte (00:25:41):
I mean it's

Lou Maresca (00:25:42):
Already trying to get out the

Leo Laporte (00:25:43):
Deal. It's just not, Yeah. We're gonna take a break. When we come back, we can talk about Blue Sky. This was something Jack Dorsey was a little time bomb actually, as it turns out that Jack Dorsey left behind when he left as CEO of Twitter. He had already funded, I think to $15 million of funding a decentralized social network. Blue Sky has now released its protocol, it's open sourced some ideas. It's maybe getting a little closer towards a decentralized Twitter. So even though Jack Dorsey said he thought Elon was the only guy who could run Twitter, I think he may have left behind just a little bit of a time bomb. We'll talk about that when we come and then come back and then we'll get to the bees and the Cs and the Ds. It's great to have all three of you Technologize. Harry McCracken, my buddy wanted to come up.

I appreciate that. We're still shut down in the studios. We had a couple of cases of Covid last week, week. So to protect you and your trip to Lisbon we're gonna thank you. Leon gonna keep you at home. Also, Louis Moaks, great to have you brand new job at SE four. We'll talk more about that in just a little bit. I'm very, I'm actually, now that I've seen it, very, very excited. We needed something like this. I think it's great. And Lou Maka, Lou m from our wonderful show this week in Enterprise Tech. Did you participate in Ignite? Where did you have some duties

Lou Maresca (00:27:15):
There? I did participate. Yeah. I was excited about a lot of things I was talking about other than maybe the rebranding of what of Office. But other than that,

Leo Laporte (00:27:22):
We're good to go. Well it turns out, according to our experts on Windows Weekly, it wasn't rebranded <laugh>. It's still office.

Lou Maresca (00:27:30):
It's still office still in there. So I'm

Leo Laporte (00:27:32):
There, Right, You are on the office team, right?

Lou Maresca (00:27:35):
Yes, I'm on the Excel. On the Excel team. Basically on the office platform team in Excel. And we were a little surprised by it actually. Oh,

Leo Laporte (00:27:42):
They <laugh>. Oh by the way, it's gonna be Microsoft,

Lou Maresca (00:27:45):
But I keep, nothing's changing for us. Yeah,

Leo Laporte (00:27:47):
And I think Paul and Mary Jo kind of clarified last week and said, No, that's in Enterprise. It's not gonna, It's still gonna be office. That's right.

Lou Maresca (00:27:57):
In a lot. It's gonna go to Microsoft 360 now, which is a mouthful, but,

Leo Laporte (00:28:01):
Oh really? Okay, so here's the story from No, no. Microsoft Office is not going away. No, it was kind of a miscommunication,

Lou Maresca (00:28:11):
But no, it, It's fine.

Leo Laporte (00:28:12):
Yeah, apparently they didn't tell you either. <laugh>

Lou Maresca (00:28:16):

Leo Laporte (00:28:17):
Alright, we'll talk about that too. That's all coming up as we continue this week in tech or show today. Brought to you by my favorite source of audiobooks, We've had Audibles as sponsor for more than a decade, I think. And I've been an Audible subscriber since the year 2000, 22 years as a very happy Audible subscriber. It started because I had a two hour commute every day, minimum two hours, usually more as much as four hours from here to Tech TV back in the early two thousands. And I was just going nuts. Listen to the radio. When I found Audible, I didn't, They didn't, at the time, there was no, there wasn't even an iPod yet. I had to get a little audible device that I got a Diamond Rio or remember that to listen to my audio books. Changed my life, changed my life.

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You can install it right there. 30 days free Thank you Audible for saving my life all these years. I really appreciate it. And for your ongoing support of this week in tech Enjoy it. You actually, I did wanna mention, as long as we're talking about podcasts PocketCasts has gone open source, which is fantastic. PO PocketCasts has gone through a series of owners, They were sold to public radio and then, let's see, they got sold again, automatic to automatic and automatic. In fact, we had Matt Mullenweg on Twig a couple of weeks ago, is all about open source. So they've announced that they've open sourced pocket casts, which is good for a couple of reasons. One, you can look at the code, but two, you could fork it if you want, which is really interesting. I love Matt and I love his philosophy. Mullenweg said, we believe that podcasting cannot and should not be controlled by Apple and Spotify. Right on. And instead support a diverse ecosystem of third party clients. They're using the Mozilla public license, which means you can fork it, you can do whatever you want with it, but you must then license it the same way. Make it open source as well. Awesome. Lou <laugh>. I think a lot of code would be open sourced if the developers were embarrassed <laugh> by the code or more importantly, the comments, right? You're, you see the code,

Lou Maresca (00:33:06):
I mean the comments are strip mean. There's a semantic tooling that strips all comments out of it. So that's not a problem. If you probably went and saw a lot of the old code that's being put on GitHub, that old Microsoft code that the team went in and added tools to it, that basically shipped all the bad comments out. Cause there's some stuff in there that you want to, don't people say

Leo Laporte (00:33:23):
Comments people write not just for the public, the old for the other people on the team and for yourself to use

Lou Maresca (00:33:29):
Yourself. Exactly. Yeah. Somebody's gonna understand them <laugh>. Yeah. But I think you're right. I think most of the time a lot of these companies, they like to, for instance, this company's putting out just iOS and Android. They have a barrage of other platforms that they're not putting the code out for Windows of Mac and Alexa and Sonos and Apple Watch and stuff like that. And I think that's, that's their business plan there. So I think they're offering two big platforms for open source so people can do what they want with them and then they keep their other platforms that see a lot of users as well kind of behind the back door. But I think opening and developing an open is the biggest thing. I think that some companies do what they call opening and developing it develop and open, which means they still develop privately but then they sync their code to the public repos eventually later on. And I feel like Google does that with Chrome. So there's a lot of companies that do it that way as well. So they still have their IP behind the back door, so to speak.

Leo Laporte (00:34:27):
I think it's also just, I like seeing the code. I think for somebody young person getting started, if you're interested in Swift to see how accomplished professional coders use Swift to make a shippable products is great and it's, it's all there on. Yeah,

Lou Maresca (00:34:46):
It's a great way to

Leo Laporte (00:34:46):
Learn and yeah, it does look like they've stripped comments. By the way, <laugh> <laugh> I don't see a lot of comments in here, so that's kind of interesting. Yeah, good on them. Good on then it looks like they're using Ruby as a glue language as well. I noticed a lot of this is Ruby Gems. I mean it's great to learn how people do this stuff, especially a program like this been around for a long time.

Lou Maresca (00:35:12):
So it's funny that you said that cuz it's really what brought VBA to being really popular is when they allowed you to record things and then you looked at the code and you actually learn how to code from the fact that you recorded that thing. Yeah, I mean so it's really learning how to code is an important thing from this aspect as well.

Leo Laporte (00:35:27):

Harry McCracken (00:35:28):
Automatic has such an interesting portfolio of acquisitions. It's made lots and lots of relatively small acquisitions and it's willing to do things with them that great big technology empires probably wouldn't do. And this is a good example.

Leo Laporte (00:35:42):
Well and Matt has said, and he even said it when he was on Twig a couple of weeks ago, that he believes an open source that he totally does. He

Harry McCracken (00:35:51):

Leo Laporte (00:35:51):
The walk. Yeah, they say one of the phrases in the company's mission statement is, I know that open source is the most powerful idea of our generation and most of automatic stuff is open sourced. I think that's great. You agree Lou? I mean you write closed code all the time.

Lou Maresca (00:36:11):
I don't actually, I think all of the office platform stuff is mostly open source. All of most of our stuff really. Office jet, office dot js and everything like that. Yeah, absolutely. That's awesome. Obviously there's proprietary code, like client code Excel is proprietary code that's closed door stuff. But most of the stuff that from a platform perspective, we opened it

Leo Laporte (00:36:32):
And that's the answer by the way to, there are a lot of calls, oh, open source windows a lot. There is a lot of proprietary code that Microsoft licenses I would imagine in there. So it's not all in your control. You know, can't just willy-nilly release code that right, you paid somebody else to use. But I do love open stores. I love seeing that is by the way, one of the tents of Blue Sky, which is Jack Dorsey tweeted this three years ago now. Twitter is funding a small independent team of up to five open source architects, engineers, and designers to develop an open and decentralized standard for social media. The goal is for Twitter to ultimately be a client of this standard. This probably is not what Elon wants to do with Twitter, I'm thinking.

Louise Matsakis (00:37:29):
I don't think so.

Leo Laporte (00:37:30):

Louise Matsakis (00:37:32):
He text his own brother blockchain, not possible, right?

Leo Laporte (00:37:36):
Yeah. Blue Sky on Tuesday launched a website for its protocol, which they're calling the AT protocol, which is clever. It's not the at sign, it's at It's federated, which is like Mastodon. The idea is anybody could run a server and then content from any given server can be followed on any other server. Connect with anyone on any service using the AT protocol. That's actually one of the strengths of Mastodon of the Feta versus GNU social platform. This, I'm not sure exactly how this would work, but an open market of algorithms. I guess the theory being Twitter has an algorithm when you're watching, there's two ways to watch Twitter right now. The latest tweets or the best tweets and that's algorithmically chosen. You could choose your own algorithm and then I think this is the most important portable accounts, the ability to take your account out of one server and put it on another server. So it's out.

Lou Maresca (00:38:49):
I find this one interesting because Activity Pub is another protocol that's been out there for a while and it's a standard. So I don't know why they're creating a new standard rather than just offering to help build out activity. So that's what I find this quite interesting cuz it also is very decentralized or Exactly. And another thing too is they've had their protocol, this particular ATP protocol's been out for a while from Blue Sky since May act actually it's been in GitHub, open sourced. And it's not a lot of people forking the code and contributing or even looking at the code at this point because of the fact that they think, Hey, why are you creating a new standard? It doesn't make any sense. Why would we use this when there's one been around for a while. So I find I'll it interesting to follow up with how they're doing in a couple years.

Leo Laporte (00:39:41):
So Mastodon is based on Activity Pub as well. So anybody who's using Activity Pub for whatever their Twitter clone, there's actually an Instagram clone, pixel fed that uses the same activity pub. They all inter-operate. I mean I think that's fantastic but it hasn't taken off notice, right? That Twitter's the 350 million user behemoth in this space, not these other guys.

Harry McCracken (00:40:09):
There's also the Liberty project, which is another attempt to decentralize social networking and let you have a identity you can take between social networks. I think maybe it's kind of focusing on other aspects of that challenge rather than trying to turn Twitter into an open algorithm. But I mean there have been things like this going on for a long time and intellectually they're really interesting and obviously IT nerds are interested and still can't quite figure out how any of them go mainstream in a way that has any kind of major impact on the way the world works.

Leo Laporte (00:40:43):
There is a developer, he was the lead developer at Odio, he worked at Twitter, he worked on Blue Sky, his name is Rebel. He's gonna be on this week in Google on Wednesday to talk about his new protocol <laugh>. So the whole issue to me is you require the network effect to succeed, right? You're not gonna join. Look, I want everybody in my family to use Signal, but until they do, it's useless. Until your family and friends are using a particular protocol. His new Twitter client is called Planetary. It's on iOS. Not a lot of people using it yet. Don't, you

Louise Matsakis (00:41:24):
Don't have a protocol, can you have a coin, right? Isn't that <laugh>? Yeah. I think people want that new protocol so they can generate value, right?

Leo Laporte (00:41:31):
I think that's right. <laugh>. I think that's right. Is Blue Sky all tied up in that? You said that there, there's blockchain. Is it kind of also about Crypto?

Louise Matsakis (00:41:42):
I think mean that that's, it's a little unclear, but that is a big driver.

Leo Laporte (00:41:47):
He renamed his company block.

Louise Matsakis (00:41:52):
I think he's sort of tied up in this. He's a Bitcoin, long time Bitcoin believer. I dunno if he's been super clear about it, but I think a lot of this space is also sort of about hype and coolness and marketing and I think Jack Dorsey has proven into that person.

Leo Laporte (00:42:06):
See, to me that's a nonstarter immediately. It's like, oh well if it's crypto, I'm not gonna do it. Is that wrong of me? Is that cuz I'm a boomer?

Louise Matsakis (00:42:16):
I think that's okay. I think it's fair to say you don't think that this needs to be financialized. I think that that's an okay trait that you don't like in this. I do think there is some optimism and people trying to do new things, but I do think that a lot of these social networking protocols are often wrapped up. The Liberty project is definitely wrapped up in crypto to some extent. And I think Dorsey's thing is too they might not be saying that right now when the market's really bad, but I think it's not really cool to be doing a new NFT thing right now. But I think that the

Leo Laporte (00:42:44):
Underlying, Oh, it's so uncool <laugh>.

Louise Matsakis (00:42:47):
It's really not the vibe for that right now. But I think that they're hoping that it's a winter, right? It's a season. It's a crypto winter. It's not a crypto forever.

Leo Laporte (00:42:55):
Yeah, actually CNN has just gotten in a lot of trouble for what some NFT fans call a rug pool. They had their own NFTs, they launched last summer, it was called The Vault on Monday they announced, we decided it's time to say goodbye to the vault by cnn, which is pissing off anybody who bought NFTs from the vault. Because now what? They're worthless. If you're gonna create a speculative security <laugh>, which I think an NFD is, you better damn well keep it going or people are gonna be pretty upset. I

Harry McCracken (00:43:41):
Betcha that CNN will have lots of company over the next few months or couple of years of other folks who jumped on the bandwagon jumping off of the bandwagon.

Leo Laporte (00:43:50):
A few posters on the Discord channel said they're contacting their lawyers because CNN has done a rug leaving people who bought in the NFTs with worthless securities. CNN apparently pulled in more than $300,000 from the sale. Now I think there's still board apes and owls and various NFTs out there in the world who was the artist who just burned all his art saying he's turned it into all into NFTs. And so Damien Hurst burned a thousand paintings and will soon burn more. That makes me really sad. He reads a collection of 10,000 NFTs, each one corresponding to a physical artwork. Buyers can keep the nft in which case the painting will be burned or keep the painting, in which case they'll lose the NFT <laugh>. Which would you rather have? Depends why you bought it. If you bought it cuz you liked the picture, then you probably want the painting. If you bought it cuz you thought some sucker, I mean investor would come along and take it off your hands for twice what you paid for it, then you'd probably want the nft. They were initially priced at $2,000, which is a lot less than apparently her southern paintings have gone for. It just makes me sad.

Louise Matsakis (00:45:26):
So crazy.

Leo Laporte (00:45:28):
Of course these are pretty fungible paintings. Similar. Just a bunch of colored tots. I'm not sure I'm the art either, but

Louise Matsakis (00:45:40):
Oh, that they all looked like

Leo Laporte (00:45:41):
That. Yeah, I think so. They're all colored. Oh, I thought they were both different. So easy. An artist or I don't know.

Louise Matsakis (00:45:49):
Well I thought he was burning his existing collection, but it's like he made something specific for this project. I feel like that's less of a stunt. You know what I mean? Yeah. He made the postcard basically. Do you want the postcard or do you want the nft?

Leo Laporte (00:46:04):
Yeah, it's a stunt. A lot of the stuff around this stuff is a stunt look. It worked. It worked. He's claiming he's burning 10 million worth of art. <laugh>, maybe not <laugh>. It will be worth 10 million when it gets turned into an,

Louise Matsakis (00:46:24):
But the stunt is part of the art here.

Leo Laporte (00:46:26):
The stunt is part of the art and we gave him the all the attention he wanted. Sorry let's see. Alphabetically, Android ad wear apps. There are 16 of these apps in the Google Play Store. Nothing you'd probably wanna buy, although you might accidentally stumble across currency converter image vault, joy code flashlight plus high speed camera and buy it or download it. Actually, you don't have to buy it. Somebody's doing it. 20 million downloads of these and they contain a clicker app. Get this, This is an interesting kind of scam. You might not even know that you've got a clicker app on your Android device. It loads ads invisibly in invisible frames or in the background and then programmatically clicks on them to generate revenue. So the real people getting ripped off by this. The people who bought the ads in the first place, they're getting charged for invisible clicks.

I think this is some degree. The dirty little secret of digital is the fake clicks that some say are as much as half of digital ads you're paying for the clicks. And half of them are things like this fake, all 16 apps are gone. Don't go looking for 'em. McAfee reported them <laugh>, but that was after 20 million people installed them. The worst DX Clean. Did you install this? 5 million people did rel a positive rating of 4.1 outta five stars. I'm not sure why it was supposedly a, This is why, cuz you can't tell if it's really doing anything cuz it's a system cleaner and optimizer and it seems to be operating better. In fact it's not cuz it's in the background clicking on downloading and clicking on ads.

Lou Maresca (00:48:30):
It's interesting that these apps even get into the store though. I mean, a lot

Leo Laporte (00:48:34):
Times it's a real question. Yeah, how are they get, I they notice,

Lou Maresca (00:48:38):
Even if you're using a web view, web browser control, if the code has been scanned by the store to say, Oh well you guys, these are invisible frames that you're not supposed to be doing that you're supposed to only be visible view web views, that kind of thing. They should have some level of gates to go through for these types of things. Now if the even updates itself, it's gotta go through the store unless you're allowing them to just build a web app frame and then you are still limited in what you can do at the operating system level. So I feel like Apple mean, not Apple. Google needs to do better job here

Louise Matsakis (00:49:10):
If they weren't scanning for this stuff. Hopefully they are

Leo Laporte (00:49:12):
Now. Yeah. Yeah. I also feel like Google has a little bit of a vested interest in kind of maybe not stopping this stuff. I mean, who's probably the number one beneficiary of this is Google. They get more, All those fake clicks end up being money in Google's pockets. I don't think Google does everything it can. I don't know. Or Facebook or any digital seller. Do you think they do everything they can to stop click fraud?

Louise Matsakis (00:49:40):
Luis? I don't know. Click fraud is a good question. I think click fraud in particular is a problem that is probably under appreciated because I think you're right. What is the incentive? It doesn't create as much of bad press. Although there were two times that Facebook got in a lot of trouble. That was a separate issue, but that they had mismeasured the actual impact. I think you don't wanna let it go so crazy that the market is so manipulated that everybody sort of knows that. Right? But that kind of is where we've gone with Click for Arms to some extent. It gets more and more sophisticated. But I think app store approval policies are also sort of a really mysterious and neglected area of reporting. I think we forget how much of content moderation is happening at that level until there's a really prominent app that gets yanked. But every day there are just so many approvals and denials for all sorts of apps, for political reasons, for spam reasons that end up getting through or not.

Leo Laporte (00:50:36):
Do you think these apps would've gotten through the Apple process?

Louise Matsakis (00:50:41):
I think the overall reputation is, yeah, that Apple's better, I think. But

Leo Laporte (00:50:45):
We get that impression. You say Yes Lou.

Lou Maresca (00:50:48):
Yeah, I mean they've been through the process. They take you to the ringer. And the reason why a lot of these rules and policies are not visible to you is because they do things behind the scenes to make sure you're not doing anything wrong and they don't want you to know what those are. Right?

Leo Laporte (00:51:02):
We've complained to iHeart Media. We've bought ads on iHeart Media podcast and then we learned <laugh> that they were buying ads in video games where they would show you 10 seconds or make you listen to 10 seconds of a podcast to get the loop box or whatever. And it turns out that counts as a full download of the podcast. So, you know, buy an ad in that podcast. Nobody's hearing that ad. You're getting charged for that ad. But all they did was play 10 seconds in a video game. That seems a little scummy. <laugh> iHeart has reportedly spent 10 million over the last four years producing about 6 million unique listeners a month from these games. We crazy. We asked them for a comment and a refund and we haven't heard a thing <laugh>. No. Just answer at all. No answer at all. All right, we're gonna take a little break. Apple announced new iPads, much to the consternation and confusion of iPad buyers. We'll talk about that. And where are new M two MacBooks that's coming up? Louise Moaks is here. Tell me about SEMA four. I'm I, This was a big deal when Justin and Ben announced this almost, almost it feels like six, seven months ago, right? A while ago.

Louise Matsakis (00:52:28):
I think even longer than that. Yeah. I think it was around January

Leo Laporte (00:52:31):
Or so. And they were cagey about it. They didn't say what it was gonna be.

Louise Matsakis (00:52:36):
I think it's kind of funny because it's sort of just deceptively simple. So people are like, What do you mean? And it's like, it's

Leo Laporte (00:52:42):
Gotta be more than that,

Louise Matsakis (00:52:43):
<laugh>. Well, we're launching a global news platform and I think people sort of laughed at that. But it's the truth. I think the idea is hopefully to compete with some of the best global news organizations in the world like Reuters the Wall Street Journal, like Bloomberg, but hopefully do a little bit more to have a more global perspective. Cause I think that those publications are sort of designed for a US audience and we're hoping, For example, one of the first markets we launched in actually was Sub-Saharan Africa. And the current doing there is intended to be for Africans by Africans. And I think that is our approach to some extent. But yeah, we're breaking down the news article. Me and Reid Hoffman. Oh, Reid Albu. Gotti. Sorry, <laugh>.

Leo Laporte (00:53:31):
I love Reed. He was at the Washington Post, right? Yes. Yeah, he

Louise Matsakis (00:53:35):
Came from the Washington Post. He's amazing. So we're writing a newsletter together and the

Leo Laporte (00:53:39):
Yeah, let he subscribe to that. Look at that. I

Louise Matsakis (00:53:41):
Just, Yeah, please do. Yeah. And so we're writing a newsletter together twice a week. Read is amazing. He came to the Washington Post where he covered Apple. He was at the information for a while. And

Leo Laporte (00:53:50):
So I wanna subscribe to all of these <laugh>. These are great.

Louise Matsakis (00:53:54):
We would love that. Great.

Leo Laporte (00:53:55):

Louise Matsakis (00:53:56):
Yeah. So I think that's the most important thing for your readers. Knows twice a week you can sort of get our scoops on all things tech. And I'm gonna be covering tech and China in particular. So if you wanna understand TikTok, if you wanna understand what's going on in Washington with China and tech and with semiconductors and of a lot of stuff that's been in the news it's a good place to just subscribe to.

Leo Laporte (00:54:19):
Really interesting. I think there are those who say this is the wrong time to start a news service or a new, You certainly wouldn't wanna start a newspaper today. Do people even go to websites anymore? I don't know how to read the news. Oh,

Louise Matsakis (00:54:35):
I think they do. But I think as a news organization, you just sort of have to think in multiple formats and multiple platform. Yeah, I think one thing that we're doing differently is that we're doing video from the start and we're actually, we have a video series right now that is partially animated by ai. So we're really trying to be innovative.

Leo Laporte (00:54:53):
Whoa, I wanna see that. Where, so where is that?

Louise Matsakis (00:54:57):
It should be on our website and we have put out the first episode on Twitter as well. It's called Witness. And it's sort of about people who are first hand witnesses to the biggest events happening in the news and we're animating their story with ai, which is really cool. So we're trying to be a little bit more innovative. It's not just newsletters, but I think that's a big part of our

Leo Laporte (00:55:16):
Story. I think that's very interesting. What are they using? Are they using a Dolly too, or stable diffusion or mid journey or all three? Do you know?

Louise Matsakis (00:55:24):
I believe it's stable diffusion, but I think we're open to experimentation and seeing what works and what doesn't. But I think Dolly two right now is just images, I believe. I don't know how much

Leo Laporte (00:55:34):
They, Yeah, Stable diffusion does. Will do animation stable. I would come back, We can talk a little bit about stable diffusion because there's a little bit of controversy now going on around it. I think it's kind of created a C explosion of AI art, but there are those who say, Eh, maybe this is not the greatest thing ever. Chiefly the artist whose art has been scraped by stable diffusion <laugh>. Talk about that in a bit. Harry McCracken's also here, the Technologize from Fast Company. What have you been covering lately? What's your latest beat on Fast Company?

Harry McCracken (00:56:10):
I have a good gig cuz that's a little bit of everything. I have a couple of stories coming up I think feel like most of them I shouldn't talk about yet. But I do have a cool story, which actually ties a little bit to TikTok and particularly how MEA is attempting to compete with TikTok in Instagram and Facebook by not showing you stuff that your friends followed, but showing you stuff that an algorithm says you'll click on, which has caused a lot of consternation.

Leo Laporte (00:56:34):
Yeah. Oh, very interesting.

Harry McCracken (00:56:38):
That will be in our next print issue and also be on the site before too long.

Leo Laporte (00:56:42):
Cool. Can't wait. It's funny, very, When I search for your name, the first article I get is something from August, 2014. My who <laugh> the iPhone event from 2014. Okay. <laugh>, You

Harry McCracken (00:56:56):
Should be able to find a scrolling list of all my fast company stories. It

Leo Laporte (00:56:59):
Is, but I think it's in reverse. Chronological order maybe. Huh? Huh. I don't know what order it's in. That's interesting. Well,

Harry McCracken (00:57:06):
We want you to read everything starting. Yes. Seven.

Leo Laporte (00:57:08):
Do read it all. It's all, It's all great. It's all great. And from the Microsoft 365 team, Lou Maka. That's right. Can I start saying that now? Is that

Lou Maresca (00:57:20):
Sure. Why not? Why not? It's still start saying it, right? Yeah,

Leo Laporte (00:57:25):
It's still office. What it, so you don't have to answer this, but it feels like Microsoft is moving away from being the Windows and office company to being the cloud company like Azure is a big part of what they're doing. And I wonder if some Point Office will just be a cloud platform.

Lou Maresca (00:57:49):
I don't think so. I mean, my opinion here is, and this is not the company's opinion obviously, but my opinion here is there's a lot of users in different sectors of the market that don't want to use a cloud or web version of a product.

Leo Laporte (00:57:59):
If you're a lawyer writing pleadings in Microsoft Word, you don't want that to be word for the web. Yeah, right. That

Lou Maresca (00:58:06):
Makes sense now. And that's the big advantage over a lot of these other products that are out there like Quip or Google or whatnot because you can have an offline version of this application that you can feel like secure on your own device. So yeah.

Leo Laporte (00:58:17):
I want to ask you about Loop. I don't know if you know anything about Loop.

Lou Maresca (00:58:20):
I do, yeah. I love Loop. I use it.

Leo Laporte (00:58:22):
Wow, I'm

Lou Maresca (00:58:23):
So jealous. Note

Leo Laporte (00:58:24):
It's not public yet. I have lots of questions. So do Paul and Mary Jo to me, I feel like Loop and Google's doing something similar. Actually Google did something similar with Wave which failed, but they're doing something similar with Google Docs. Apple I think is gonna start doing something. They have a new kind of whiteboard app that sounds like a little bit like a loop. And of course there's notion, I think there's, there's something kind of bubbling under here and a new way of working with documents. I want to ask you about that when we come back. Sure. But first a word from our sponsor, Zip Recruiter, Benito. Did we hire you through Zip Recruiter, Jason's friend. So there's two ways to get a job with Twit, be Jason's friend or through ZipRecruiter. So as with any workplace, a lot of the people you hire people who know somebody who knows somebody, that kind of thing.

But that's right cuz yeah we did you work with Jason at cnet? That's why. Yeah. But for instance, we, our beloved continuity person, she handled a wrote the copy, she handled all the advertisers, was great. Ashley decided to go to another company. Happens about three months ago, Lisa's going, Oh my God, what are we gonna do? This is a very important person to the company. What do we do? We went to zip recruiters where we always go to ZipRecruiter, posted the job. Now one of the great things about posting a ZipRecruiter is you're casting the widest possible net. The thing I always say is, a company is made of people. Your company is really just a bunch of people working towards the same goal and hiring a great employee TRA can be transformative. It can help you so much. Hiring the wrong employee can put you in, put the brakes on big time.

And we've had that experience in both directions. So you really becomes important. Your hiring might be the most important thing a company's leadership, a company's HR division does. You're putting together the team that's gonna make you or break you. So we take this very seriously and I think anybody who has a company of any kind, be a podcast company, but of any kind should be paying attention to the team you're building. Hiring the right people is so important. And whether you're hiring for a podcast like we are or for your growing business, ZipRecruiter's the place to go. Lisa posted that opening in our continuity department on ZipRecruiter. All of the applicants went into the ZipRecruiter interface. That's another thing she loves. She's not gonna get a lot of phone calls or emails. They all go into the ZipRecruiter interface, which means you can easily screen them.

They reformat all the resumes so that they're easy to scan through. They also will give you screening questions. Yes, no true, false, multiple choice, even essays that you can use to eliminate people who are just not right for the job. But then ZipRecruiter does something pretty amazing. They go out, they have a million current resumes on file cause people come to ZipRecruiter looking for work. They go out and look at all those resumes, compare their skills with the people you're looking for and then tell you about people who are there who are looking for work. And you get to invite them to apply. And I have to say, when you invite somebody to apply, they're so excited because they're being invited. They've really, they're honored by this. They respond, they do the interview, they come in. It was an amazing experience. Now Viva's on our team.

We love her. Thank you. Zip Recruiter. It's one of the reasons four out of in five employers who post on ZipRecruiter get a quality candidate within the first day. It's an amazing system. So if you love the team that puts together twit, you will love ZipRecruiter. Try it free right now. You need to remember our special url, I t ZipRecruiter. It is the smartest way to hire and we have constantly been thrilled by how well it's worked for us. So many of our staff really it either is somebody we know or somebody we got to know very well through ZipRecruiter.

Okay, back to the alphabetical show. We're down to Apple <laugh>. We got American Airlines in Android. Now we're on Apple. Apple did I guess did not surprise anybody. They did not have an event in October. I was sure they were gonna have an event in October. I guess it's not too late. They could do something next week, but they haven't invited anybody. Their quarterly results are Thursday. They are releasing, they did announce this week that they're gonna release Mac OS Ventura and iPad OS 16 tomorrow. They also announced new iPads. And I loved Jason Snell's take, he's not alone. Almost everybody has said what the hell? Ja <laugh>. Jason says the iPad's erratic Odyssey continues. We'll ask 'em on Tuesday on a Mac break weekly about this. But the problem is they now have kind of a weird mishmosh of iPads. In fact their iPad Pro, which one would think is the top of the line actually doesn't have some of the features of the 10th generation iPad <laugh> and the 10th generation iPad doesn't work with the newest pencil and the cameras on the top on the 10th generation.

But on the side, on the iPad Pro it very much, in fact, if you go to the Apple store and you look, it's very confusing. What is the Apple, what is the iPad Air? How does that fit in to this lineup? It's just a very confusing carousel of models that don't seem to make a whole lot of sense. Harry, I know you like your iPad. In fact, you've been in here using an iPad instead of a laptop. Are you confused by this lineup or does it all make sense to you and are you gonna get the new iPad perhaps more importantly?

Harry McCracken (01:04:35):
I'm a little confused. I mean after having spent more time thinking about it than most people will or should be expected to do, I'm less confused, but it is deliberately cluttered lineup. I, I'd say one of the big issues is they now have three iPads which have a screen that's about 11 inches <laugh>. The new 10th generation one, which is, it's the successor to the ninth generation one. But because it costs $120 more, the ninth generation one is still on the market. Then you have the iPad Air, which is very similar to the 10th generation except it has a screen that's a little bit better and it has a much better processor. It has the M one and then there's the 11 inch iPad Pro, which has an even better processor and a few other upgrades.

Leo Laporte (01:05:20):
It's one Ben, it's the M two

Harry McCracken (01:05:23):
<laugh>. But the look and feel is all basically the same for these three iPads. And I think it's at least one iPad at that size. It's more than the world needs. And you're right, the 10th generation iPad has this thing that iPad Pro users have been asking for forever, which is the webcam being on the landscape. Yeah.

Leo Laporte (01:05:43):
Cause you use it like a laptop as I think most pro users do. So the camera, if it's on the side is like to your left,

Harry McCracken (01:05:50):
I call Shifty Eye.

Leo Laporte (01:05:51):
It's weird. Yeah, it should be on the top. Is it? On most laptops?

Harry McCracken (01:05:55):
Yeah. So Apple finally added that to this relatively inexpensive iPad, but it also relates to new iPad pros that don't have that. Maybe because it wasn't quite willing this year to invest in a completely new design for the iPad Pro. And then well the new iPad has this landscape camera that people have been begging for. They got rid of light name but they did not allow it to support the second generation Apple pencil. So you need a dongle to charge your first generation iPad pencil, which still has lightning, which means that if you're out,

Leo Laporte (01:06:31):
That's the weirdest thing.

Harry McCracken (01:06:32):
If you're out and about, your pencil dies and you didn't remember to bring a cable and an adapter, you're kind of outta luck.

Leo Laporte (01:06:40):
I have the Apple pencil too, but I long ago, I don't know where I've thrown that adapter because I never thought I'd need it and now I need

Harry McCracken (01:06:49):
It. So, So they have this new iPad that's kind of stuck between the old iPad world and the new iPad world in a way that's a little uncomfortable. And you've gotta hope that maybe they have stuff planned out for next year where some of this will start to make sense and that they probably will involve pruning the lineup a little bit.

Leo Laporte (01:07:08):
I could see why they didn't have an event because that's exactly what everybody would've been doing scratching their heads at this event

Harry McCracken (01:07:15):
And answered your question. I don't plan to buy this new iPad mainly, no. Mainly because it's just not very different. It has an even faster processor than the one I have. But lack of computing muscle has not been an issue. In fact, I wish that Apple did more to create software. They really took advantage of these really fast processors. Yes. And the one cool thing it has is the second generation pencil on the new iPad Pros has this hover feature where if you hold the pen, the pen just above the screen, it can do things like in Apple's notes aft, you'll see a preview of the color and point tip, which is quite handy but not worth spending a huge amount on. Particularly if you kind to feel like maybe next year will be when Apple will do a more significant Apple upgrade.

Leo Laporte (01:08:02):
This has been the number one I complaint's, not quite right, but the number one issue with the iPad Pro is you've got all this horsepower and you don't have apps to take advantage of it. Jason SEL says there's no getting around it. The absence of Apple's Pro media apps on the iPad Pro is an embarrassment. All those other apps are great. Yes. But Apple has had the opportunity to take the lead in defining what the pro app experience should be on one of its platforms, the iPad and has never see It Sounds like you agree Lou.

Lou Maresca (01:08:35):
Yeah, I mean I posted this even on social networking. I'm really disappointed in the fact that they are not putting forth even in their own apps to some of this horsepower. Now if you get the iPad 11 when terabyte, you get even more ram, but that thing's like 14, 1500 bucks but you have no software to really take advantage of all that ram. So why would people buy it? I don't understand. Yeah,

Harry McCracken (01:08:55):
I think Apple was betting big on the stage manager feature this new multitasking interface, but which officially debuts on Monday and we'll get to see what the masses think about it. But the people who have been using the betas I'd say pretty uniformly, at least on Twitter, buying it to be like two convoluted and confusing and it's not even something they'll be turned on by default. So I think Apple maybe expected that stage manager would wow people and so far it does not seem to be wowing much of anybody.

Leo Laporte (01:09:25):
It seems to be the reason the iPad OS is delayed, iPhone 16 came out last month is because they couldn't quite get stage manager to work. It's gonna come out tomorrow on both iPad OS and Mac os. I use the beta on my iPad Pro and immediately turn it off. It just takes up what is already limited screen space and doesn't behave in any way predictably. It doesn't

Harry McCracken (01:09:52):
Really, Stage manager is pre, Yeah, sorry. No, go

Leo Laporte (01:09:54):

Harry McCracken (01:09:55):
Stage manager is pretty cool on an external monitor, but that capability has been delayed even further until later this year.

Leo Laporte (01:10:01):
Yes, yes. So I'm not gonna

Harry McCracken (01:10:04):
The screen,

Leo Laporte (01:10:05):

Harry McCracken (01:10:05):
Bigger, more stage manager might kind of make sense. And it is nice an external monitor,

Leo Laporte (01:10:10):
Honestly it's not unusual for Apple to, it happens all the time, come up with a new affordance that no one uses, that just kind of doesn't go anywhere. And this may, despite all the attention they paid to it, they're trying to do something. And Lou, you work at Microsoft, they're trying to do something that Microsoft has had problems with in the past as well, which is to take a desktop interface and move it to a tablet. And famously with Windows eight, this was kind of a nightmare. Hybrid desktop tablet, Microsoft backed off by eight one and then eventually by Windows 10 and actually now it's pretty, it's very usable, but it was difficult at first. It was a struggle at first.

Lou Maresca (01:10:59):
I mean that even for building applications, you know have to have this kind of hybrid experience and it's tough to get through that whole especially developer platform side of things. People don't wanna build for 'em cuz they're not kind of newer platforms. And so that's what this will have a problem with is you're gonna have to have, get that critical mass on the platform before you see any value

Leo Laporte (01:11:18):
For it. Yeah and I think maybe stage manager is not the way to handle a multiple. I understand they wanna bring desktop, like multi window experience to iPad, but I don't think stage for me stage manager is a big miss. I, I'd turn it off immediately and don't ever use it. It's just also it's unpredictable. You don't quite know what's gonna happen <laugh> and that's the kiss of death in a computing system. If nothing else. You need to be consistent. Have consistent results. Yeah, true. Right <laugh>. Otherwise people are just gonna go, I'm confused. Probably the biggest sleeper announcement of this week was a new Apple TV and maybe more important than the fact that they're new Apple TVs that they're dropping the price significantly. This is one of the things that kept the Apple TV from competing well with Roku and the Fire TV was it was a $200 streaming device, now it starts at 1 29 and if you want ethernet and a little bit of an updated chip experience, 1 49, that's a lot.

That's 50 bucks less. You get 64 gigs and wifi only for 1 29, which is probably what most people are gonna get. Still three times more than a Roku, but not 200 bucks and 128 gigs for 20 bucks more with an ethernet pour and support for Thread, which is Apple's actually it's Google's interface for home automation. But Apple's supporting it in their home kit. I don't know, is this Apple famously five years ago said Apple TV's just a hobby. <laugh>. They have not convinced me otherwise. Even today it just feels like an afterthought. Louise, do you cover Apple at all? Do you use Apple products at all? I don't wanna leave you out,

Louise Matsakis (01:13:17):
But I think this is just all part of a bigger pivot services. I think they want you to have the Apple TV and they want you to watch their content. I think a lot of the device experiments that Apple is doing right now are sort of secondary to that. They want to make services bigger, they wanna make

Leo Laporte (01:13:39):
Advertising better. Oh that's interesting. Yeah.

Louise Matsakis (01:13:41):
My thought is I just think they have this weird iPad line because they're like, well we gotta put out another device. But I think that they're sort of realizing that people, they're hitting that barrier of how much they can make the next iPad different from the iPad before that. So they need to differentiate. Yeah,

Leo Laporte (01:13:55):
It's barely different. That's right. They may be having the same problem with Max. It's not unusual for them to match new MacBooks in November. Of course the closer you get to the holidays, the more opportunities you miss. It is expected. They will announce M two MacBook Pros and maybe an M two Mac mini but it won't be this month. So I think even Mark Gurman says it's probably gonna be next month and maybe again by press release, which to me always feels like that's a company that's not really proud of what it's next product is. Like I say, Apple. Yeah. Yeah, I mean Apple has a unique ability to get the eyeballs of not just the press but of users within a few hours. They already had half a million views on their iPad announcement. I mean people on YouTube, people immediately. In fact, I bet it's more than that now. People care and I think when Apple can have an event, they probably should just because it's an hour ad. It's a free ad. Let me just see. Meet the new iPad. Yeah, 8.6 million views in five oh oh, let me stop. I can't play it because they pulled us off of YouTube for playing this.

Aye, aye <laugh>. Yes. What the hell's that all about? Don't pull us off. I didn't play it. I it started but I didn't mean to please Apple forgive us. We iOS today played this video which is a nine minute ad for the new iPads. They played this video and immediately got taken off YouTube pulled down Mac Break weekly. I didn't know that. So I used this to illustrate the new product, Don't show it, don't press that button. Benito. And I got, immediately I got from the editors says, Oh you we got pulled down, you gotta take it out. So, So if you watched, by the way, it's only the YouTube edition of the show. If you subscribe on the podcast, you'll get the full version of the show. Cause it's my opinion, this is a news show we're showing Apple promotional. I don't see why they wouldn't want us to put it in there, but I can't get pulled down from YouTube takes too long to appeal and get it back up and it's just not worth the effort. So don't show it. I don't need to, I don't need, but they got 8.6 million views in the last five days on this. So I guess maybe they don't have to do an event. I guess

Harry McCracken (01:16:25):
One interesting thing about the Apple TV is that the remote has USBC instead of Lightning. Yeah, it might be a tiny bit of evidence that they do in fact tend to wind down lightning over the next year or so. Obviously the big deal would be if they put USBC in an iPhone, but you also still have all those people with AirPods out there that are based on Lightning. And that would kinda be the litmus tests. If you see AirPods that are USBC based, which I imagine they might do simultaneously with an iPhone just to simplify people's lives.

Leo Laporte (01:16:58):
It is the beginning of the end for Lightning, isn't it? In fact I hope so. The EU has in effect declared it's the beginning of the end for Lightning because by next year, not for iPhone 15, by the end of next year you can't sell anything that doesn't have a USBC charging interface. So all of Apple's product have to be converted by the end of next year. That's probably aligns with what they had already planned to do. I would guess Apple is also, and this'll be interesting to see how people react. This gonna put more ads on the app store starting next week. They send an email to developers saying, Would you like to buy an ad in the main today tab, which has never had ads before or in a, you might also section at the bottom of individual app listings in all countries except China.

No ads for you. China the ads will have a blue background and an ad icon. So we'll have to wait and see how much they look like, how clearly they are ads. I guess there's an example for Mac Rumors. So you're looking at Travel day, you're seeing other apps and then maybe this is an Apple provided, I bet this is an Apple provided image cuz these are fake apps and then there's Trip Track and you see it's a blue background instead of the white and it says ad and a blue button. There's similarly, here's the same ad for Trip Track on the today page it says add Trip Tech. Does this undermine contention that they don't spy on you, they're secure, they're private, they don't care.

Louise Matsakis (01:18:40):
I think so

Leo Laporte (01:18:41):
Yeah, go ahead Louis.

Lou Maresca (01:18:43):
No, I was gonna say every app store is doing this. I think it allows you to bootstrap your application.

Leo Laporte (01:18:48):
It's great for developers. Yeah, yeah, I'm sure makes a big difference. I know for podcasts if we get on the editorial part of the podcast page doubles the downloads for that episode. So it's huge. I'm sure if it's same thing for apps. Louise, what were you're gonna say?

Louise Matsakis (01:19:04):
Yeah, I mean I think that you're seeing this sort of rise of other big tech companies aside from sort the ad giants as we like to think of them turning to advertising is a really lucrative new revenue stream, right? Amazon is doing this increasingly, Amazon's ad business is now larger than YouTubes. Apple is doing this Uber announced this week that they're also gonna start introducing ads during your ride. They'll be ads while you're waiting for your ride and those are gonna be based on where you're going and where you're coming from. So I think that these are all businesses that we don't traditionally associate with advertising, but they're all doing it now.

Leo Laporte (01:19:45):
And the thing that we've always said, and maybe it's not quite as clear to the general public, is that Apple by kind of banning third party tracking is in a way favoring its own first party tracking. They can say, well these apps, they can't track you but our apps, we can track you <laugh>, we can Apple, Google, Facebook, Amazon, all have first party information that's probably more than sufficient to sell ads. So in a way they, they're self dealing a little bit by saying, well no one else can track you on the iPhone, but don't worry, we got this home. My beer

Harry McCracken (01:20:24):
My big beef with ads in the app store is not privacy so much as the fact that app store search is really still marginal or even sometimes downright. It's possible it could be quite hard to find the app you're looking for. Even if you're searching for its exact name, it may not show up top. And certainly a lot of cases other apps are buying app you were looking for. So they show up first and if you're lucky, like four or five apps down, you might find the app you were looking for in the first place. And if Apple just did a better job of improving the its core search algorithm, this wouldn't be so annoying.

Leo Laporte (01:20:59):
I wonder how much that affects apps and app developers. The fact that you can say you can do buy and ads somewhere else for your app, but people can't find it and end up using your competitor. In fact, Florian Mueller who runs the Foss patents blog said that exactly said this is another means of increasing the effective app tax rate, forcing developers to buy ads on their own app pages in order to avoid competitors steer stealing customers.

Harry McCracken (01:21:30):
Totally. People also game the system by the, I was searching for procreate on my iPad, kind of the defining painting app and there was another app that was not procreate, but they squeezed procreate into their little text field for the name of their app. So that showed up really high even though it is absolutely nothing to do with procreate.

Leo Laporte (01:21:51):
Yeah, that's terrible. And speaking as a user, you know may say, well I don't care, but as a user this is bad for you because if you're a free app and you're trying to get people to download your app and your app page is loaded with ads for other people's apps and you have to buy that space so that you don't get the competitors, suddenly there's a strong incentive to start charging for your app. You need to make more money now. And that's not good I think for the app ecosystem.

Lou Maresca (01:22:22):
Absolutely. Yeah. I think that the interesting thing is they try to train you and you build, put your app in the app store to do SEO to be able to say, hey, this is how you get yourself more people to find you put more keywords, you use the right keywords or so and so forth. But most apps don't do it right because it's not a very clear, they were saying that it's not a clear algorithm. So it's unfortunate

Leo Laporte (01:22:45):
Apple design Chief Evans hanky is leaving, she took over when Johnny left three years later she's on the way out the door. That's a big deal because there's no one right now to run Apple's design and Apple, which was famous for its design for so long is sitting without a VP of industrial design. She will leave she announced in the next six months. So I imagine they will find a replacement. But here's an important person. This is somebody who three years, this is somebody who was Johnny Ives right hand and certainly understands and knows Johnny's design ethos. Is this a big deal Harry, for Apple to lose Evan's hankie so quickly after losing Johnny? Ive,

Harry McCracken (01:23:43):
Yeah, I mean particularly given that it's Apple and I think we're still coming to understand what the post dive era of Apple design is. I mean that there have been some hints such as the fact that they brought out new MacBook Pros that were thicker and heavier Yes. That had had old features people missed. They brought back all the ports we we've seen, I think in a pretty healthy way them lose some of Johnny Eve's obsessions and whether, which they did basically by undoing past moves. But then the next question is, once you stop maybe correct correcting past mistakes, how do you actively make these products better? And I don't think we've seen enough Apple products yet to understand exactly where the company is going given that the products they're shipping today have been in the works for a long time and they'll, Johnny I will have an influence probably on every Apple product ever made forever. But I am very intrigued by signs that they won't just be, what would Johnny have done as the guiding light and with hanky leaving, it might be even a little bit longer before we fully understand what the direction is.

Leo Laporte (01:24:56):
I have to say, I mean I have to say I've kind of like the direction since Johnny left. I don't mind thicker, heavier, better battery life, more ports that's just more functional. I think Johnny maybe pushed it a little too far in the form over function.

Harry McCracken (01:25:15):
Mag Safe is back, which says a lot of people.

Leo Laporte (01:25:18):
Yeah, okay, I think that was our Apple segment <laugh>. There'll be lots more Apple coverage on Tuesday with the Mac break weekly. In fact, Jason Snell be back will ask him about what he thinks of the iPad lineup. He says it's confusing. I think it's sort of he's, well there's one more kind of related Apple story. Apple was one of the companies, one of the big tech companies Bill bidding for the NFL Sunday ticket that's still up for grabs. Sunday Ticket is the last NFL property that has not been sewn up contractually through 2030. So all the other stuff is sold. The Sunday ticket was a Direct TV exclusive. They paid one and a half billion a year for that Lost it has said a lot of money on it. In fact, towards the end, Direct TV was just giving it away cuz they couldn't get anybody to pay for it.

Now the NFL wants more like two to two and a half billion dollars a year, which of course eliminated Direct TV from the bidding and really brought in the big tech companies. So Amazon, Disney Plus and Apple, I imagine Google is probably in there as well. This is a great way to promote your product and as you were saying with Apple, caring more about services this is a way to get people to subscribe to Apple TV or to buy an Apple TV and a subscribe to Apple tv. Plus the hang up apparently, and this is kind of interesting, is over what they can do with the broadcast rights. The NFL's traditionally very restrictive about what the shows the games can look like, how you broadcast them, what you can do with them. Apple, according to Eddie Q, isn't just interested in being a conduit for broadcast games.

They want to, as they've done with Major League soccer, create a relationship which allows them to do more with the games. We aren't interested set at EQ this week at a pale center for media panel in New York. We aren't interested in buying sports rights. There's all kinds of capabilities that we're going to be able to do together because we have everything together. And so if I have a great idea, I don't have to think about, oh okay well my contract or the deal of interest will or won't allow this. NFL does not, <laugh> not gonna lie down like major league soccer is gonna lie down. Lou, are you a football fan?

Lou Maresca (01:27:59):
Oh yeah, big one. Big one. And I, I know a lot of people who work for Amazon actually work on Amazon's streaming sports services. They got

Leo Laporte (01:28:07):
Thursday night football exclusively.

Lou Maresca (01:28:08):
They really want this, this because they can support all the tack on services and the experience that they want their users to have. And they want people to see that. And so they, they're really pushing really hard for this. So

Leo Laporte (01:28:22):
When I saw that Amazon's Thursday night football, the only way you can get it is by having a streaming subscription. You have to have a Amazon Prime and stream it. You can't watch it on broadcast television unless it's in the market of the game. So I thought that's gotta hurt ratings. But I guess everybody has an Amazon Prime account, I guess at a fire TV stick. I don't know they, they went out and they got two of the best announcers in the business. Kirk Herb Street or is it Herb Kirk Street. I can fuse him and Al Michaels who's a legend in the business and I think they're actually doing a pretty good job. But they also offer three different ways to watch it. You can watch it with the regular broadcasters, you can watch it with some, I don't know, this is the new thing now.

The Super Bowl was cobranded with Nickelodeon and you watch the Nickelodeon version of the Super Bowl. I can't remember what Amazon, who Amazon's doing is like Jesus and Miro or somebody doing <laugh>, doing the play by play. Maybe it's the Peyton brothers, the Manning brothers. And then they have a third version which I tried to watch, which is the Amazon stats version. The only reason I stopped watching is cuz everything is a bird's eye view. So they can do all these lines and squiggles during the game of where this guy ran and where it's kind of cool. But I wanted the normal shot. I like the closeups and stuff like that but clearly they've got a free rein to play with this a little bit. Plus the league knows them. So they might have an inside track. This would be very, very expensive. You think Amazon has two and a half billion to pay a year? I guess so. I think

Harry McCracken (01:30:08):
So. It's in

Leo Laporte (01:30:08):
Their back pocket <laugh>? I think so. I think they can find it somewhere. This is a US only product by the way. So maybe Apple wants to do it globally. I don't know. I mean the NFL does have global ambitions, that's why they have games in London every year, two to 3 billion a year, which is a massive increase from what Direct TV was paying. I think it's gonna be really interesting to see what Apple does with Major League soccer. Soccer's had a hard time getting traction in the us They've got a 10 year deal with mls and if, I hope they do something more than they do with baseball. Apple does Friday night baseball and it's just not great. But if they could do something interesting, I mean 4K would be just a starting point, but maybe something graphically more interesting. I don't know. I don't know. It seems like there's opportunities here if the NFL lets them, Louise Harry got anything to say about this or should we move on? Not a thing. Not a word.

Harry McCracken (01:31:09):
I'm not a big football person, so I am looking at it from a objective viewpoint. <laugh>, I did do a big story about a few years ago when Twitter was getting very into live broadcast scene of Sparks and that was supposed to change what Twitter was to people. And it seems to have had little or no effect on what people wanted Twitter to be

Leo Laporte (01:31:30):
Twitter. So interesting. They've tried, so they've throwed so many things against the wall and

Harry McCracken (01:31:35):
At least to am at least Amazon and Apple. People are coming to them for live streaming of stuff. So it makes more sense.

Leo Laporte (01:31:44):
Twitter does live audio now, right? And I'm Twitter spaces. Twitter spaces. Is that taking off? They're trying to be basically was they saw a block party take off and they said we could do that. And then no Clubhouse. Clubhouse, not Block Party Clubhouse. Thank you. And then Clubhouse. Where's Clubhouse now?

Louise Matsakis (01:32:04):
I think nowhere. I think it was so strange to me how much Clubhouse took off and how much people thought live audio was the future because it reminded me of the worst Colin radio show you've ever heard.

Leo Laporte (01:32:16):
Yes, exactly.

Louise Matsakis (01:32:17):
Not being moderated at all. And so who thought that that was a good, I don't, don't know. It was just strange to me. You can't not produce content. Good content is a hard thing to do. I think people were just really bored during the pandemic and it was sort of novel at first because really high profile people were on there and you sort of got them unfilled, right?

Leo Laporte (01:32:39):
I did. So the local radio station News talk radio station in San Francisco was summarily executed two weeks ago, kgo. And there was a dominant station in not just the Bay Area, but nationally and Cumulus, which is one of the three big radio companies in America, bought them 10 years ago, Messed them up, messed them up, messed them up. Finally they just pulled the plug last week and turned it into a sports gambling station <laugh>, which is hysterical because part of the reason they did that I think is because there is a proposition on the ballot in California to make sports betting legal. And it is currently losing two to one <laugh> in the polls. So they may have have switched formats prematurely and properly. But anyway, that's the only time I ever listened to Twitter spaces. All the hosts who got laid off said, Well what do we do?

Talk radio. Oh, we could do Twitter spaces. So they did like a three hour Twitter spaces, which no a hundred people listen to. And then that was that. It's where talk show hosts go to die. Maybe that's what it is. I don't know. Let's take a little break. We have a few more things to talk about with our esteemed panel, The Technologize, Harry McCracken, Lu Mareska from this week in enterprise tech. Louise Moaks, who is now I'm so happy tech reporter at samma four. Great place. I'm I'm rooting for you. Great to have all three of you on the show today. Our show today brought to you by Shopify. Shopify. Are you finding sales sluggish this quarter? Yay. Discover Shopify. The all in one commerce platform to start, run and grow your business. Shopify makes it easy to sell to anyone from anywhere. I know this firsthand because my daughter has a Shopify site selling t-shirts she designed and Shopify makes it so easy to set up a site to get it working.

You're instantly, you can accept payments, whether you're selling t-shirts or tee bags, you can start selling with Shopify. Join the platform that's simplifying commerce for millions of businesses worldwide. You'll be able to customize your online store to match your brand. She had so much fun doing that. Actually, I remember when she was doing it. You'll discover new customers, you'll build the relationships. So we'll keep them coming back. And I gotta tell you, Shopify covers all the sales channels to successfully grow your business from an in-person point of sales system to an all-in-one e-commerce platform. Even on social media platforms like TikTok, Facebook, Instagram. I actually have to ask my son. Yeah, I think he is. You should Shopify for his site. Thanks to 24 7 support and free on-demand business courses. Shopify is here to help you succeed every step of the way. Every minute new sellers around the world make their first sale with Shopify.

That's really a nice feeling. That first sale, you can do the same thing. Shopify makes it simple for anyone to sell their products anywhere, whether they're eBooks or earrings. Shopify simplifies starting and running your own successful business. And when you're ready to take your idea to the world, you can with Shopify truly global. They're the commerce platform powering millions of businesses down the street and the round the globe. I think Shopify is the most democratizing of sites. Yeah. Salt Hank powered by Shopify. Look at that. And he can take Amex, Apple Pay, Diners Club, Discover Meta, Google Pay, MasterCard, PayPal, Venmo and Visa there <laugh>. And you know what? He didn't have to do anything to get that. It all just comes to the Shopify platform and now Hank's expanding. He's got other things. He's gonna start selling at Hank's Kitchen. I think that's kind of cool.

I didn't even really realize this. Both my kids are using Shopify. Isn't that great? Once your store is live, Shopify makes getting paid simple by instantly accepting every type of payment. Grow your bi. You know what? If you can accept Google Pay and Apple Pay, I know when I go and I'm shopping for something, if I can do Apple Pay or Amazon Pay or Google Pay, big plus, it just makes it so much easier. And there's this sense of trust as well, right? Grow your business anywhere thanks to their endless list of integrations. The third party apps giving you everything you need to customize your business to your needs. Shopify removes the guesswork thanks to built-in tools to help you create, execute, and analyze your online marketing campaigns right from his Shopify dashboard. Manages orders, shipping payments, It's your turn now it's your turn. Try Shopify for free.

Start selling anywhere. Sign up for a free trial at It's all lowercase to start selling online today. S H O P I F y It's empowering people all over the world. People like my kids <laugh>, which is nice cuz then I don't have to support 'em. Thank you. Shopify. I didn't even think of the fact both my kids now are Shopify sellers. That's pretty cool. That's pretty cool. All right, we'll get back to our wonderful panel in just a bit, but we did have a very fun week on twi. So much fun that we decided to make you a little movie all about it. Watch.

Leo Laporte (01:40:01):
All right, before we get back to the show, I wanna do a little plug for Club Twi cuz it's so important to us these days. Maybe you noticed not as many ads that's gonna get worse over time. Economy's going bad and ad podcast advertising is I'm afraid going south. That's why The Club, that's why we started the club in the first place and that's why it's so important to us and I think it's the best deal in podcasting. So what do you get as a member of Club Twit? You get ad-free versions of every show that we do every single show. Not just shows you can get with ads in it, but shows you can't get as if you're not a member. Hands on Macintosh with Micah, Sergeant Paul Thrass, Hands on Windows, The Untitled Linux Show with Jonathan Bennett, the GFI with Dick d Bartolo.

These are all shows we don't publish publicly. They're only available to club members. They're part of the Twi plus feed. But there's another reason why you might wanna take a look at twit Club. Twit is the Club Twit Discord, which is an absolute joy if you've not been in there. I think it's so much fun. Every show, of course has a section and we have chat just like we do with irc. We have chat going on in the club section, but we also have sections for beer, for autos, for anything. Geeks are into comic books coding, so it's a really great social. I think it's a future of social media and because it's club TWI members only, there are like-minded people. Quality <laugh>, full of animated gifts. <laugh>, it is a really wonderful place to hang out. So you get ad free versions of all of our shows.

You get shows you can't get anywhere else. You get access to Club TWI and all of that. How much would you pay? Seven bucks a month. That's all just seven bucks a month. But it sounds like it's lot. Not a lot. People have told us we should charge more. I wanted to make it accessible and fair to everybody, but also it makes a huge difference to our bottom line. It helps us keep the lights on. So if you're not a member of Club Twi, may I humbly, I guess is the word humbly in treating you to at least consider it. And it's a great gift for a geek in your life. It's also great for businesses. We have a number of business members. In fact, we just I think sold another business subscription. Really appreciate that. There is a yearly plan, but it doesn't cost any less.

It's just seven times 12. But just to make so you don't have a charge every month. I really appreciate your consideration. twit, Thank you very much for your consideration. If you are on a Boeing 7 87, you might wanna ask when they've rebooted last. Boeing <laugh> a weird thing, but Boeing 7 87 s have to be turned off and on once every 51 days or they will show misleading data to pilots. It's potentially catastrophic if the reboot directive, but it's a computer. You can have the onboard network switches crash. You can have inaccurate data including air speed, altitude, attitude engine operating instructions. In addition to that, the stall warning horn and overspeed horn. Stop working. <laugh>. That seems like a bug. Lou does that seem like a bug? Seems like a bug.

Lou Maresca (01:43:40):
Seems like a bug. Like the worst part about it is. I know I used to live next to a guy who worked at Boeing, in fact, on these units and they go through so much rigor. I just can't understand how they deliver something like this.

Leo Laporte (01:43:52):
They didn't let it sit for 51 days. Clearly, I guess not. And this software testing is hard because you can't test for every possible thing. And one thing they, I guess must be a memory leak that takes 51 days. I don't know. I don't know. In now this is an article from the register. The register says based on the airworthiness directive, the power cycling is needed to prevent stale data from populating the aircraft's systems. That sounds like a layman describing a memory leak to me, right? It's filling up and there's no room for the new data. So you're getting old data because you filled up the space. Can we fix this by not using c plus plus? Is that the simple fix

Lou Maresca (01:44:48):
<laugh>? It's never as easy as that.

Leo Laporte (01:44:51):
Unfortunately. I wish it were a true garbage collected language. You wouldn't have to worry about use type script, right? That's right. Yes. That's

Lou Maresca (01:44:59):
A solution. This guy is type script,

Leo Laporte (01:45:00):
Right? Is it <laugh>? It really? Yeah. Type script's. Great. TypeScript is Microsoft's take on Java on, Is it purely functional? I think it's functional.

Lou Maresca (01:45:09):
Oh yeah, it's a, It's touring supported everything. Yep.

Leo Laporte (01:45:13):
How's F Sharp doing? That was also the functional version of C Sharp. Is that doing right?

Lou Maresca (01:45:18):
Still going, Still going strong.

Leo Laporte (01:45:20):
See if you have functional, if you have functional software, you don't have this problem, you don't have this problem,

Lou Maresca (01:45:26):
You have other problems,

Leo Laporte (01:45:27):
You have other issues. <laugh>, you have infinite recursion. But that's another problem. This is the week that hearing aids went over the counter. Easier, faster, and cheaper. You can buy in theory, hearing aids at a drug store without an audiologist's intervention. One of the problems with hearing aids, I wear 'em I wear resounds. Before that I wore Starkeys $6,000 and Medicare doesn't cover it. Insurance doesn't cover it. $6,000. FDA announced the rule chain in August, but it didn't take effect until this week. Now obviously if you have profound hearing loss, you probably should go to an audiologist. And it's interesting, there's a guy named Adam Curry. You probably heard of him. The pod father who also, he says, Where is hearing aids? He's dead against this. Yeah, maybe he's working for the Audiology Association of America. I don't know. I'm sure my audiologist doesn't like it either but it's very expensive.

You have to go to an audiologist. They do a hearing test, they then sell you the hearing aids, which they tune. They fine tune. They have software to fine tune the hearing aids so that they are exactly the curve that your hearing loss shows. But it's a very high price. You pay and you have to go back to the audiologist regularly for tuneups and to upsell you and so forth. I get emails and brochures from my ologist all the time saying, Hey, we got some new hearing aids. You're gonna really, really like <laugh> White House says a move could save people as much as $3,000. Sony is already unveiled a pair of high tech hearing aids very similar to what you'll get in their headsets and earbuds. They can sync with a smartphone app via Bluetooth. You could do a self fit, Walmart, cvs, Walgreens, Best Buy, others are all selling over the counter hearing aids prices ranging from 200 to a thousand dollars and up. Adam says, you're not gonna get a good experience and that's gonna, in the long run, it's gonna scare you away from hearing aids. And that's the biggest problem is that for whatever reason, whether they're too expensive or they don't work well, older folks like me don't use hearing aids. And there's all sorts of issues including cog. I mean obviously the first one is your wife gets mad at you, but besides that, <laugh>, apparently cognitive decline can occur if you don't heal very well. So it's potentially a big issue.

Adam says it's Bose that got this rule. I don't think it's, I mean maybe Bose stands to benefit,

Harry McCracken (01:48:08):
But you've certainly been advocating for a long time for it. I mean this has been the works for years. We did stories on this maybe four years ago when it was first. I

Leo Laporte (01:48:15):
Think it's the right thing. It works. Do you think there's any merit to Adam's complaints?

Harry McCracken (01:48:20):
Well, and with eyes, we have reading glasses, which you can buy without a prescription and they certainly serve a purpose, but the fact you can just go into Walgreens and buy reading glasses doesn't mean that people who have more serious eye problems should not be seen in eye doctor and buying prescription glasses. So

Leo Laporte (01:48:39):
That's a good analogy. Yeah,

Harry McCracken (01:48:40):
It seems like it's maybe a little bit like that and that basic issues can be dealt with a non-prescription device. But that does not mean that we don't need people who know what they're doing. And if you really have serious vision problems like I do, reading glasses are not gonna solve them

Leo Laporte (01:48:56):
For you. No, you can't buy the Dena Dells for $5 and expect your eyesight to improve. I do have to say though, this is a big opportunity for big tech. Apple, particularly Samsung phones for the longest time had a hearing test built in. I think iPhones now do where it's just exactly like the audiologist test. They play tones of various frequencies and levels into your ears and you press a button if you can hear it and you press another button if you can't. And I think they work pretty well. It seems to produce the same curve that my audiologist gets. I'm sure it's a good thing to have, but an audiologist is not a physician and they're not doing an ear, nose and throat checkup or anything like that. They look in your ear <laugh> comment on how much ear wax or how little ear you have and then test you. I feel like we could do a lot of that. And I actually think Apple with its air pods is very much looking at this space. Louise, do you know anybody who wears hearing aids too young to know anything?

Louise Matsakis (01:50:01):
Probably do, but I can't think of anyone off the top of my head. But I think the reading glasses analogy is really perfect for this. And I think we have such just a systematically from up and down, messed up healthcare system that anything like this that can

Leo Laporte (01:50:16):
A good point is cheaper kind of a response to our crappy health insurance, isn't it? Yeah,

Louise Matsakis (01:50:22):
I think that's definitely part of it. And I think just improving people's senses is such a thing that is crucial for quality of life. So we should just totally be encouraging this.

Leo Laporte (01:50:31):
I also think a lot of older people don't wear hearing aids cause there's a stigma, right? Exactly right. I think if they're AirPods, there's not <laugh>. Definitely not a stigma to having EarPods in your ears. Everywhere I go, people are walking around with AirPods in their ears. It doesn't imply that you're somehow hard of hearing or that you're old. In fact, if anything you might look a little hipper and younger. So I can't really see a negative to this unless you're an audiologist, then there's some negatives. But again, like an optometrist, you still need them for profound loss or variety of different conditions. I love the idea of AirPods getting smarter. It's a form of augmented reality.

Louise Matsakis (01:51:14):
Totally. No, I think it's really interesting and I think hearing is really interesting and what we can do in that realm is cool. So

Leo Laporte (01:51:21):
Yeah, as dwindles

Louise Matsakis (01:51:22):
Not a podcast guys,

Leo Laporte (01:51:23):
As Dwindle is saying in our chat room, you can change people's lives drastically with $20 technology. But until now we've sold it for 6,000. That's a really good point. That's a real How many people don't have hearing aids? Just cuz they just can't afford it. So I'm all for this. Kanye West is buying Parlor. Nothing more to say <laugh> <laugh>. I got nothing.

Louise Matsakis (01:51:53):
<laugh>. You see, not it's cough. <laugh> the bird got some statistics and their Daily Act active users are 60,000. And it's just really upsetting to think that's not really worth much. It's not worth require.

Leo Laporte (01:52:06):
Yeah, the verges story was they're basically a failing company, taking advantage of somebody's mental illness.

Louise Matsakis (01:52:14):
I think that's unfortunately potentially what's going on here. I do think we are in the age too though of the celebrity social network owner, which has happened with media for a long time. I think in some ways the media business to some extent it sort of choose your billionaire and

Leo Laporte (01:52:31):
Jeff Bezos buying the Washington Post for instance,

Louise Matsakis (01:52:36):
Or South Charter Morning post Alibaba. I can't remember what the billionaire of the LA Times, what their claim to fame is. But The Atlantic is owned by Lori

Leo Laporte (01:52:48):
Jobs. Yeah, yeah,

Louise Matsakis (01:52:50):
Right. So we've seen this for a while. So I think it's interesting to see it go into social media now. I mean he's totally copying Elon, right? He's like, Elon's got a social network. I want one now. Yeah,

Leo Laporte (01:53:01):
Very much I could do that. Meta has been told, You gotta sell Giffy or is it Jiffy? It's

Louise Matsakis (01:53:08):

Leo Laporte (01:53:09):
Jiffy. Jiffy. Jiffy to me. <laugh> not the peanut butter. The animated gifs jiffs the uk. The UK watchdog has said, Nope, can't own it. US government had no problem with it. But the UK says, nope, you can't own it.

Louise Matsakis (01:53:27):
I think our antitrust regulators are so unsophisticated. My God. <laugh>.

Leo Laporte (01:53:31):
It's amazing, isn't it?

Louise Matsakis (01:53:33):
<laugh> sad. Yeah, I think we made Facebook into an antitrust issue and they're like, Okay, we're doing it now. And it's like, no, we wanted you to systematically look at the market, not <laugh>, not just block anything Facebook wanted to buy.

Leo Laporte (01:53:49):
Yeah. Are you ready for an app that will let you speak to your dead long lost loved ones.

No <laugh>, too bad, too bad. You're gonna get it. Really good. Article by Charlotte G in the MIT Technology Review. Her parents are still alive, but she asked them to submit the four to this four hour interview you have to do for this California based company hereafter ai. They do four hours with an interviewer and then your loved ones whenever you pass, can talk to you even though you're dead. She <laugh> now her parents are alive. So this was more of an experiment. She says From what I could glean over a dozen conversations with my virtually deceased parents, this really will make it easier to keep close to the people you love. She says, So it's an app on your phone. She says she started talking to them and at first they were kind of tinny sounding in distance cuz I guess they're sampling your voice as if they were huddled around a phone in prison. But as we chatted, they slowly started to sound more like themselves. Maybe it was processing, I don't know. They told me. Now this is weird personal stories I'd never heard. I learned about the first and certainly not last time my dad got drunk. Mom talked about getting in trouble for staying out late. Now I'm curious if the AI's making these up or if they had them in the interview. They gave me life advice and told me things about their childhood as well as my own. It was mesmerizing.

Harry McCracken (01:55:44):
I think the lesson is to talk to more to your loved ones while you're still looking up them around. And also maybe run a camera while you're talking to them. There you go. So later on you have that video. There

Leo Laporte (01:55:56):
You go. I did do that with my mom last time I saw her. And I've done that several times just have video of her talking about stuff and it is really valuable. But apparently there are more than one company that's doing this to create a digital replica of someone with a good chance of seeming like a convincingly authentic representation. You need lots of data. Hereafter AI whose work starts with subjects when they're still alive. Ask them questions for hours. Everything from their earliest memories to their first date to what they believe will happen after they die. Initially they were doing this with a live human, but they're now doing it with a bot. Cuz why? What do you need a human for? Or would you do this Louise with your loved ones.

Louise Matsakis (01:56:50):
So I think it's kind of interesting cuz on one hand it's really creepy, but I also think the history of humanity shows us that worshiping the dead and trying to talk to the dead is very human, right. It's a ritual we've always had that you go and you honor your ancestors and you talk to them to some extent. I think it's a little weird that they're now talking back or this AI of them is talking back. But I think that there is something really alluring about this that feels really sort of core human. But I understand why other people find it creepy, but other people find the day of the dead creepy or the idea of having a soul sort of creepy or haunted houses creepy. So I think it's almost like a ghost, right? But I think ghosts are part of human folklore.

Leo Laporte (01:57:38):
Yeah, it's very black mirror to me. It

Louise Matsakis (01:57:43):
Is totally.

Leo Laporte (01:57:44):
And I don't know if I'd be creeped out or not. She says, on one occasion my husband mistook my testing for an actual phone call when he realized it wasn't, he rolled his eyes as if I were completely deranged. <laugh>. Her mom and dad arrived via email attachment. I could communicate with them through the Echo app on a phone or an Amazon Echo device. When I finally opened the file with my colleagues watching and listening on Zoom, my hands were shaking. I hadn't because of the lockdown, she hadn't seen her parents in six months echo open hereafter. She said, Would you rather speak with Paul or with Jane? I opted for, I know, creepy. I opted for my mom a voice that was hers, but weirdly stiff and cold spoke. Hello, this is Jane Lee and I'm happy to tell you about my life. How are you today?

I laughed nervously. Well thanks mom. How are you? You good at my end? I'm doing well at my end. At my end. I'm doing well. You sound kind of unnatural. She ignored me and keep on, kept on speaking. Ah, there's a podcast, if you're curious AI finds its voice, that podcast in machines we trust Season four, episode 10 from the MIT Technology Review. If you want to actually hear this conversation up and it's not the only one. There are many companies now starting to do this cuz we can synthesize the voice. That's easy, right Harry? I mean that's the simple thing.

Harry McCracken (01:59:16):
It's getting better and better. And also the video part is also becoming increased and doable. And presumably there will be lots of people who do this where you can see, Oh, that gets and here. But I do feel that don't, it's not creepy so much as stupid and manipulative on some level. I mean it's basically all, this is like a Eliza, except with a fancier interface. It's not talking to your relatives. I imagine they're not at, these conversations are not as sophisticated as they seem. If you have, I think it's wonderful to have four hours of your relatives telling you stories. But I don't know whether you need this AI interface to make that useful. Just listen to the recordings. Yeah.

Leo Laporte (02:00:00):
Oh, it's very strange. Speaking of passing on Dei, Dietrich Mathis, Chitz Austria's, richest man, the man who founded Red Bull has passed away at the age of 78. He's still got lots of energy though, I gotta tell you. He's still, He founded Red Bull in 1984 with a Thai businessman after discovering the caffeinated beverage, eased his jet lag during a trip to Asia. They started selling Red Bull in 1987 by 2020, Red Bull was selling tens of millions every day. In fact, Katie Perry, when I saw her on Friday she was wearing a beer can bra. I don't know how any other way to describe it, and pretended she was pouring beer. Beer came out of it, except she admitted later it was Red Bull. So she was drinking Diet Red Bull during her concert. It marks make markets of variety of Red Bull beverages from cola to tonics to cactus fruit infused flavors revenue of 6.3 billion euros in 2020. Didi built a personal fortune estimated of 15 billion on Red Bull. So he has passed away the end of the Red Bull. And that's the end of the show. I like to end with a obituary. I don't know why. Thank you so much for being here. I all three of you are wonderful. Lou will catch you every Thursday on this week weekend enterprise tech. Yes. Fri Friday. Friday. Friday, 1:30 PM

Louise Matsakis (02:01:42):
Friday. Friday, 1:30 PM

Leo Laporte (02:01:44):
Time after I leave on Wednesday. I don't know what happens around here. <laugh>. So Friday 1:00 PM you can watch it live or subscribe. Best thing to do, subscribe in your favorite podcast player. So you get it automatically this week in enterprise tech Tech. Thanks for the good work you do. We really appreciate you on the show. Oh, we love doing it. We love doing it. Thank you. You're great. Thanks to Louise Moaks too. It's great to see you again after all these months or years. I, it's been a while, but I'm really glad to see that you're with SE four. This is exciting. I've now subscribed to all the newsletters, including yours.

Louise Matsakis (02:02:19):
Thank you so much, Leo. I really appreciate that. It's been so much fun talking with you. And Yep, please go to summit and on the right side you will see the tech newsletter that I'm helping. I would love your feedback and your thoughts and we'll be in your inbox twice a week on Wednesdays and Fridays.

Leo Laporte (02:02:34):
I like the global focus in the US we just do not get international coverage at all. Oh yeah. And there's so much going on around the world. This is great. Especially Africa, which is really undercover.

Louise Matsakis (02:02:49):
Yeah, totally. And I think especially if you're interested in tech, it's like all your favorite companies are doing really interesting things at different parts of the world.

Leo Laporte (02:02:55):
Yeah, yeah yeah. Really good. This is great.

Louise Matsakis (02:03:00):
Thanks so much, Leo.

Leo Laporte (02:03:01):
There are no ads. I guess There are ads. Okay. There are no ads yet. There will be

Louise Matsakis (02:03:08):
Ads. Yes, there are some ads in the newsletter. Yes, we do have an advertising business.

Leo Laporte (02:03:14):
And is that in the long run? Is that the intent? Is it gonna be unsupported?

Louise Matsakis (02:03:21):
I think it'll be part of it. So we definitely have sort of a multi revenue stream approach. We have a really great events business already, actually. Oh,

Leo Laporte (02:03:28):
That's smart. Yeah, there's big money in there. We partner. Yeah.

Louise Matsakis (02:03:31):
Yeah, we've partnered with Gallup and we've had a bunch of events in DC but we're hoping to sort of bring that model and I think that eventually there will also be a subscription paid product for

Leo Laporte (02:03:39):
Sure. Wow, you had an event with Nick Clegg. Now that would've been fascinating

Louise Matsakis (02:03:44):
And it was super interesting. Yeah.

Leo Laporte (02:03:47):
Okay, cool. Of course. The guy in charge of international relations for Meta, I'm getting a Meta Quest Pro on Wednesday. Who

Louise Matsakis (02:03:57):

Leo Laporte (02:03:58):
That will be interesting. <laugh>, I have 30 days to return it. We'll unbox it on as soon as it comes either Tuesday or Wednesday on Twig, and probably on Twig and maybe, I don't know, play around with it. I'll have to figure out if I can stream the experience so that you can see what I'm seeing. Harry McCracken, the Technologize Global technology editor at Fast Company. Always. Great to see you too. Thank you for coming by. Give my love to Marie. I will. Your beautiful wife. Yeah. And I'm sorry, maybe Covid will be over the next time.

Louise Matsakis (02:04:34):
Please, Please, please.

Leo Laporte (02:04:37):
<laugh>. We had a listener email tickets that twi that TV saying, I'm coming on Sunday. Yeah. No, not yet. Nope. Nope, nope. Someday we do. But we'd love having all three of you. Thank you, Harry. Thank you, Louise. Thank you so much, Lee. You guys are fantastic. We do TWI every Sunday, 2:00 PM Pacific, 5:00 PM Eastern. You can join us live if you want live, do TWIT TV with live audio and video streams. If you're watching live chat, or in the club, Discord, which is always a great place to hang after the fact on demand ad supported versions of the show available at TWI tv, on YouTube, and of course subscription. In fact, that's the best way to do it. Just go to your favorite podcast client. Use pocket guests. They're open source. Now they're, that's actually my favorite and I think they're the number two. After iTunes, the number two way people subscribe to us do leave us a review. If you haven't yet, five Stars would be much appreciated. After 18 years podcasting. I think there're probably a few people who have forgotten to it exists. Remind them if you would, and we will see you next Sunday. Thanks for joining us, everybody. Another twit is in the can

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