This Week in Tech Episode 953 Transcript
Please be advised this transcript is AI-generated and may not be word for word. Time codes refer to the approximate times in the ad-supported version of the show.
Leo Laporte (00:00:00):
It's time for Twin this week at Tech. Great panel for you. Brianna Woo is here from Rebellion Pack. Dan Patterson. He's got a new firstname.lastname@example.org. I'll let him explain that. And Yanko records of Lowpass cc. You may remember him from Giga Ohm and Variety. We will be talking AI this week. Of course. Open AI's Developer days were this week they announced something called GPTs. They could revolution as ai. I think they're very interesting. We'll also talk about that new humane [00:00:30] AI pin. Do you want to have a pin that's watching all the time? And then speaking of watching all the time, why does Nissan want to know about my sexual activity? We'll talk about privacy in cars and why it's not against the law to spy on you. All that coming up and a lot more. Next on Twit
twit intro (00:00:52):
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Leo Laporte (00:00:57):
[00:01:00] This is twit this week in Tech. Episode 953 recorded Sunday, November 12th, 2023. Deadly competence this week in tech is brought to you by Express VPN. If you really want to go incognito, protect your privacy, make yourself as invisible as possible with the number one rated vpn, the only one I use. Express VPN for three extra months free [00:01:30] with a one-year package. Go to express vpn.com/twit and by eva. It's a first Eva's new Pro series, the HDL three 10 for large rooms and the HDL four 10 for extra large rooms give you uncompromised audio and systems that are incredibly simple to set up, manage and deploy at scale. Learn more at narva.com/twit and by lookout, whether on a device or in the cloud, [00:02:00] your business data is always on the move. Minimize risk, increase visibility and ensure compliance with lookout's Unified platform. Visit lookout.com today and by miro, the online workspace for innovation, where your team can dream, design and build the future together. From any location, tap into a way to map processes, visualize content, run retrospectives, and keep all your documents and data in one place. Get your first three boards for free [00:02:30] at miro.com/podcast.
It is time for TWI this week at Tech. Oh boy, the show. I wait for all week long. Talk about the week's tech news. What I try to do every week with the help of Jason Howell, who does all the work is put together a team, a panel of people who can talk about the Wheat Stick news intelligently and I think we have exceeded expectations. [00:03:00] First say hello to Brianna Wu, executive director of Rebellion Pac, former candidate for Congress. Former target of Gamergate husband to Frank, I mean wife to Frank, husband is Frank. Anything else? Brianna, we should put in your cv likes to drive boxers.
Brianna Wu (00:03:15):
Number two, princess Peach Speed Runner in the
Leo Laporte (00:03:18):
Entire world. Number two, how could I forget? Princess Peach Speed Runner in the entire world.
Brianna Wu (00:03:24):
Super Mario two. Thank you. I need to recognize are
Leo Laporte (00:03:27):
You satisfied with number two? Are you going for No, [00:03:30] no,
Brianna Wu (00:03:30):
No. I'm not that that jerk that took me off the leaderboard. I'm coming for him. I'm coming for you, buddy.
Leo Laporte (00:03:42):
Brianna Wu (00:03:42):
Don't know when, if you hear a noise behind you at night on speed run.com. That's Brianna. Woo. Coming for your record, buddy.
Leo Laporte (00:03:50):
Is your speed run on YouTube somewhere?
Brianna Wu (00:03:53):
Yeah. Yeah. I'll drop in the show.
Leo Laporte (00:03:55):
Okay. I'd like to see it. But you're still practicing. In other words, you haven't given up, you haven't [00:04:00] hung up your, there's
Brianna Wu (00:04:01):
Kind of an ick going on, so I can't say that games have been my top priority, but yeah. Yeah.
Leo Laporte (00:04:09):
Also with us, the great Yanko, Rutgers, you may remember him from Giga Ohm and you were at Variety for a while and now has his own newsletter. email@example.com filtering the future. A wonderful newsletter where you're doing the same great work that you've always done, but you're doing it for [00:04:30] yourself. You're not doing it for the man pretty much. Yeah. I love it.
Janko Roettgers (00:04:34):
I mean, I'm doing it for everyone.
Leo Laporte (00:04:37):
Yeah, but you don't have a corporate master.
Janko Roettgers (00:04:41):
I am my corporate master.
Leo Laporte (00:04:44):
Yeah. That's what I found out when I started twit, I said, I don't want to work for the man anymore. I told my friend Patrick Norton, he said, Leo, there's always a man. In my case, the man's a woman. My wife who runs a place, a good friend, as you know, Brianna Woo knows her very [00:05:00] well. She's in charge. Everybody knows that.
Brianna Wu (00:05:02):
Lisa is amazing. She is literally the nicest, most deadly, competent person I know.
Leo Laporte (00:05:09):
Deadly competent world of her. That's a really good description of
Brianna Wu (00:05:13):
Her. If it was the zombie apocalypse and I could choose like five people, it wouldn't be Special forces. It
Leo Laporte (00:05:19):
Would be Lisa. No, give her a rake and you're done. Yeah,
Brianna Wu (00:05:22):
Leo Laporte (00:05:23):
Also with us, and it's good to have him back for a while. He had moved to the dark side. He comes and he goes, he's like [00:05:30] the, oh no.
Dan Patterson (00:05:30):
Dark side. No, no. He's like
Leo Laporte (00:05:31):
The Scarlet, but now he's, I never went to, well, we couldn't have you on for some reason. I forgot why you were working for somebody. You couldn't. I don't remember what. Anyway, Dan Patterson is back. It's great to see you. You're an AI now.
Dan Patterson (00:05:46):
I am in ai. I still write occasionally for Jason Heiner and zd and some other places. But yeah, the day job is Blackbird ai. We, and I don't want to log roll, but we track DIS and misinformation [00:06:00] all day long. We track manipulated content.
Leo Laporte (00:06:05):
This is huge. Now, do you do it for companies? Do you do it for journalistic enterprises? We
Dan Patterson (00:06:10):
Do it for government organizations, for governments and for nonprofits. Fantastic. Many of which I can't and we don't talk about.
Leo Laporte (00:06:21):
Dan Patterson (00:06:22):
Leo Laporte (00:06:23):
Dan Patterson (00:06:23):
Won't ask you. Well, a lot of organizations are trying to confront this challenge [00:06:30] of they're effectively narrative attacks. Right. And Brianna is very familiar with this, and I was during the 2020 election, when you are charitably brigade online, when that happens to a government, to an organization, to a company, that can be disastrous.
Leo Laporte (00:06:51):
Well, it's sure in the news these days, and it's only going to get worse as we lead up to the election. I think the Israeli Hamas war [00:07:00] has also kind of stepped this up, as has Russia's invasion of the Ukraine. I mean, there's a lot of reasons why people would want to spread disinformation and thanks to ai, it's become easier to do it at scale.
Dan Patterson (00:07:15):
Leo Laporte (00:07:16):
Brianna Wu (00:07:16):
Your software detective, when Leo forgets to mention the number two Princess Peach speed runner, just dis information.
Dan Patterson (00:07:24):
Brianna Wu (00:07:25):
Need this caught and maybe Lee,
Leo Laporte (00:07:28):
You want me to play this? Is [00:07:30] that it? Is that what you're talking about? No, you don't. Here she is, ladies and gentlemen. Frank's rooting you on, which is hysterical. Is this getting up to the starting line? Is this
Brianna Wu (00:07:41):
Yeah. Yeah. This is as you're starting the game. So go like a second in. You have to shed the beginning of it because it indicates, where's my audio cheating
Leo Laporte (00:07:48):
You, my audio. There it is. Okay.
Dan Patterson (00:07:51):
Where do you do this, Brianna? Do you do this at your how
Brianna Wu (00:07:56):
Sby porter? I do it right here. I've done it for games. [00:08:00] Done quick as well. So really exciting stuff. Here
Leo Laporte (00:08:02):
We go. Here we go. Choose a player. You of course are going to be Princess Beach because there's no other player to be
Brianna Wu (00:08:10):
No, she can float. Come on. This takes a lot of work. Okay, look at this frame. Perfect.
Leo Laporte (00:08:17):
Boom. That's how you win Frame. Perfect. Right? You got to be frame perfect. Oh
Brianna Wu (00:08:21):
Leo Laporte (00:08:24):
Okay. We're not going to spend the whole show watching how show, how it should just be. It should be in the background. You [00:08:30] should have this in the background. Yes. It's on Vimeo. Look for, what should we search for on Vimeo?
Brianna Wu (00:08:37):
Just Brianna Whizzed run my re evil. Three speed runs are on there too.
Leo Laporte (00:08:44):
Yeah, the world's coming to an end. But you are a dominant force in Princess Peach.
Brianna Wu (00:08:49):
There we go.
Leo Laporte (00:08:50):
Actually, it's Super Mario Advance. We should say you are playing Princess Peach.
Brianna Wu (00:08:55):
There's a new Princess Peach video game coming out called Princess Peach. Showtime. I'm really [00:09:00] psyched for this.
Leo Laporte (00:09:00):
She's got her own game finally. Alright. I was going to mention, speaking of disinformation, Alex, I just found out Alex Stamos, we've joining us this week on this weekend. Google, he runs the Stanford Internet Observatory, but we've also had Joan Donovan on before. It seems like disinformation researchers in academia are under constant attack, Dan. I mean, it's hard to do, but the [00:09:30] Academy doesn't like,
Dan Patterson (00:09:34):
I mean, just speaking generally, I think that there are efforts. There isn't just one, but there are efforts to attack and malign institutions and those who are
Leo Laporte (00:09:50):
Practitioners of institution, they, they're more sensitive. Brianna's got a high rhinoceros, but if you had a day job working for Harvard University, [00:10:00] Harvard does not. And so that's where they go after.
Dan Patterson (00:10:05):
Yeah, they go after, right? They're vulnerable, right?
Leo Laporte (00:10:09):
Dan Patterson (00:10:10):
But I mean, they're academics, so academics, journalists, government, employees, anybody who is in a position of authority at an influential or an institution, you are constantly attacked by a number of forces. Right? Yeah. Boy, [00:10:30] I couldn't be more vague, huh? That's all right.
Leo Laporte (00:10:34):
You've probably being judicious, which is a good thing to be in this particular arena. One doesn't want to stir up any animus. Let's talk about ai though. This was a big week for AI starting on Monday with open AI's developer days and a very, I thought, a kind of exciting keynote from Sam Altman. When he first started. I thought, oh, this is not going [00:11:00] to be that exciting. But he said some, first of all, dropping the cost dramatically. But I think, and correct me if I'm wrong, any of you, but I think the big announcement was that they were going to allow people to create these, what he calls GPTs, this little agents based on chat, GT four, and there would be ultimately AGPT store. This seems like a big step forward in ai. Am I wrong? And by the way, I should put it out before you answer.
I am an AI skeptic. You don't have to convince me. I [00:11:30] mean, everything I've seen up to now just is like I compared it to Cliff Clavin on cheers. It's like somebody who doesn't know everything but thinks he does in a very eloquent way explaining why you're wrong. These things just don't impress me so far. They seem mediocre at best. But my take on the GPTs is because are going to be designed to do one thing and generally from a corpus of information that is reliable, [00:12:00] that really there's some great potential here. Do you think you agree, Dan?
Dan Patterson (00:12:05):
Yeah. I think what this could do is set up an economic incentive structure that would allow, you would think much like the app store opened up, or maybe YouTube opened up to allow independent developers to create apps. This could do something very similar. If some of the, right now the app [00:12:30] store in OpenAI is pretty challenging. I would argue that it's not very good or not very useful, but creating personalized GPTs could provide some incentive structure that allows this to scale rapidly or create things that fit custom needs and the incentive structure that helped developers build those specific needs.
Leo Laporte (00:12:52):
Yeah. Here's the process of creating a, and Sam did this. He demonstrated it. He made [00:13:00] a mentor AI that took one of his speeches about mentoring startups and turned it into a mentor, a startup mentor. So you start by messaging it, saying something like, in this case, they give an example, make a creative who helps generate visuals for new products. But this can go far beyond this. I mean, this could be a user agent that books airplane tickets online. It could be an HR [00:13:30] representative that's actually read the handbook, can answer any question you have about it.
Dan Patterson (00:13:38):
I think you're right, Leo. To this point, I've tried to use AI as a part of the journalism, or at least the content creation process for the majority of this year. And I think I'd agree that a lot of the tools or a lot of the products are pretty mediocre, or at least they produce c plus results. Like this is possible, but it's not like I
Leo Laporte (00:13:58):
Was in college, like [00:14:00] a gentleman C,
Dan Patterson (00:14:02):
But I think that this is the first instance of an iteration that could elevate the tool beyond. That's a nice novelty.
Leo Laporte (00:14:13):
Here's some examples from OpenAI. Game time, for instance, it can quickly explain board games or card games so it knows all the rules, and you can ask it. How do I play cribbage? A coloring book hero that can take any idea and turn it into whimsical [00:14:30] coloring books. Let's see. Brianna, woo, speed running. What's the name of the game? Mario Super, Mario. Two. Super Mario, two as princess. Let's see if we get a coloring book for you here. Peach. Okay. But to adhere to our guidelines, I'd like to avoid using specific names. Okay, well, all right. [00:15:00] So I guess there's a lot of talking here. Again, cliff Claven. I don't fine, just do it. It's not explaining. Brianna, do you have an opinion on all this? Not the coloring book.
Brianna Wu (00:15:16):
So let's just be honest about how this is probably going to be used. We've seen the tendency to use every single one of these technologies in technology in tech before.
Leo Laporte (00:15:28):
Stop talking immediately. [00:15:30] Look at that. Oh my God.
Brianna Wu (00:15:33):
Can you send
Leo Laporte (00:15:33):
That to me, Leo? I love that. Yes. This is on its way to you. I love that. Love it created a color that it's a coloring book, right? So there's no color, but it's outlines. A kid would love coloring the sin. It's Princess Peach. I love sitting on a couch.
Brianna Wu (00:15:47):
Why instance speech have a PSS two controller.
Leo Laporte (00:15:50):
Oh, I should have said on an Xbox, that's an
Brianna Wu (00:15:52):
Error. That's an error. No, I think that, look, I agree with you that this is overhyped. I think the AI [00:16:00] is going to be very helpful with some things. I think you should think of it less as a technology that's going to revolutionize everything and more is like a spice that gets added to your food that makes a meal really, really good. A great example is Lightroom. If you look at where the masking is in Lightroom today versus five years ago, they've got a lot of AI ML tools to make this a lot easier to select your subject and other parts of it that are really, really good. That doesn't fundamentally [00:16:30] change Lightroom, but it does make Lightroom better. I think that these tools are going to be helpful for some things. Summarize my email box, give me a draft of this particular letter, make me a coloring book, playing to my narcissism.
All those things are good. But I think a really good question to ask yourself when any new technology comes out is how could a really, really deranged person abuse this technology and do some terrible things with it? And I think anyone [00:17:00] can very easily think of a number of things. AI will be used to add abuse. I think people can think of ways this is going to hurt the labor market. And just one more quick point. When we started take Xbox Live as a result, as a initial product, the very first version of Xbox Live arcade, that human monitors in the loop, they actually looked at reports when people were being abusive and evaluated. If it was, and then they had a one strike in your [00:17:30] out rule, and they suspended the jerks. That was a much, much better system than what they have today, which is a much of an NLP and automated systems and basically letting all the jerks play with each other, which we know makes everyone more toxic, adding toxic behavior to toxic behavior. So I think that this store, I think it's going to be successful as a novelty, the same way that all these VR games were a really fun novelty, but I think the real way we're going to feel this invention [00:18:00] is the way it's going to hurt the labor market.
Leo Laporte (00:18:03):
I mean, I could see they gave some examples, and I think for instance, the example I've seen is nobody reads the HR handbook at work. We have one that's this thick because there's all these laws and stuff. So what if you had AGPT? I guess we're going to have to get used to this terminology, but that's what they call these little agents. But AGPT agent that has ingested the handbook, you tell it specifically don't answer [00:18:30] anything. It's not in this handbook. And now instead of calling the poor Harried HR person, which our employees do all the time, does this count as a day off? If I do this on a holiday and they just query the GPT? It answers. It answers accurately. Taking it from the handbook that is either going to free up the HR person or going to cost her job. But that seems to me a good use. By the way, I asked for Princess Peach playing with an Xbox [00:19:00] instead and it's complied. So just so you know, Xbox controller now available. Yeah. What do you think?
Janko Roettgers (00:19:11):
I mean, I see points on both sides. I do have to say it's regardless of how it's going to play out in the end, it's sort of impressive to see the speed at which this is evolving right now and not, it
Leo Laporte (00:19:23):
Feels like this is a big step, doesn't it?
Janko Roettgers (00:19:25):
Yeah, yeah, for sure. And I was just thinking back sort of the analogy to that, and it's [00:19:30] not the one-to-one analogy, but some of the prior voice assistants or current voice assistants and so forth, Amazon had this whole initiative where they were like, people can now generate customer assistance based on, I think they did two or three since they have the onset, which was four years ago. Or I could get these numbers wrong, so don't quote me on that, but very slow because these are corporate partnerships, and then you have to get people involved [00:20:00] and what does this assistant do? And then it still lives within the thing or with certain guardrails. So the fact that companies cannot go out there and create their own GBT really quickly for their own purposes is impressive.
Leo Laporte (00:20:17):
Yeah, it's impressive. Might be a little scary to some, because there are, in fact, last week, both the US President Biden issued an executive order limiting ai, [00:20:30] and there was one out of Bletchley Park in England featuring a number of Kamala Harris was there, Elon Musk, I think the German chancellor was there. So it's clear people are starting to also worry about these ais. To me, the issue is not creating these gpt, as long as you don't give them agency, if it's just operating in a digital form. [00:21:00] I mean, I guess it could be a disinformation issue, Dan, but as long as you don't give them, don't give 'em nukes mean, that's when, now interestingly, this week, the United States and China said, we are going to regulate the use of ais in both drones and nuclear weaponry as part of the APEC meetings this week in San Francisco. That to me, seems exactly the right direction to go. [00:21:30] Let's have the development, let's speed it up, but let's also consider where we've got to protect people from what AI could do. And
Dan Patterson (00:21:42):
Leo Laporte (00:21:43):
Dan Patterson (00:21:44):
I'm sorry. No, no. Well, separating the real harms from the potential science fictional, right. I think I've mentioned this on this show before, if I have, forgive me, but I feel like I have interviewed almost everyone in AI [00:22:00] at one point or another. I've been covering this since 2016 or so, and I talked to Nick Bostrom who wrote, he's an Oxford philosopher and he wrote the book Super Intelligence Path, dangerous Strategies about 10 years ago.
Leo Laporte (00:22:14):
Nick's very famous. He's the guy who came up with a simulation hypothesis.
Dan Patterson (00:22:18):
Exactly. He's right. All of this whole mythical AI is going to destroy the world comes from his thinking or some of his writing. I don't think that he [00:22:30] intended this, but this is a consequence of some of his work. He told me that it is, we are likely to overestimate the capabilities of artificial intelligence, but underestimate the dangers. Meaning we can see, or we could see this as some super intelligence robot, and if we are focused on these scenarios where AI takes over the world by doing science fiction [00:23:00] stuff, then we're going to miss the real dangers. Some of those are missing disinformation, and some of those are just, like Brianna said, our economy and our workforce is really vulnerable to this right now.
Leo Laporte (00:23:15):
Yeah, those HR people who might be out of work, but then maybe the job that they were doing was if it could be automated that easily wasn't such an important job. I don't know. The telephone sanitizers
Dan Patterson (00:23:30):
[00:23:30] Are going to be replaced. Workers typically get the labor gets the short end of the stick when it comes to much innovation.
Leo Laporte (00:23:38):
Although I have to say maybe because of this labor's of late been flexing its muscle. I mean, just look at, that's true. Both the WGA, the Writer's Guild and now the SAG strike, the auto workers and the auto workers, but certainly those two in the entertainment industry were very much concerned with AI and [00:24:00] both won victories on the AI front. So I don't know, maybe this is a beneficial fear that they will then step up to.
Brianna Wu (00:24:13):
Oh, I think certainly. I mean, the problem, look, I feel like I'm a broken record on the show saying this technology is not good or evil. It's a tool, and I think we get the bad results with this when we sit out the political process. We don't ask how [00:24:30] these things are going to affect us, and we don't have technology policy when we're proactive, when you have labor unions doing exactly what they should do, which is look at a threat for something like ai, and they use the power of collective bargaining to get a result that protects workers, that is the system working. That is exactly what we want. It's sad that there was so much human cost, why they're waiting for a fair result. But this is what you need to do is be proactive with this. And [00:25:00] this is why I've been advocating with government as well.
What worries me, however, and I suspect Dan would agree with this, is I don't think that we have social media platforms that are really proactive in thinking about how AI is going to shape the election landscape and how it's going to affect basically disinformation online. We are certainly seeing right now, obviously what's going on in the news is an incredibly inflammatory topic that has extremely [00:25:30] charged emotions on all sides. But I've no doubt that some of that is being made worse by people that they win by slamming a wedge into these preexisting divisions in American life. And I think AI is going to be used to massively amplify that. Or maybe I'm wrong, Dan, maybe I'm paranoid.
Leo Laporte (00:25:50):
I don't think if you're paranoid, we both are. One of the, it was actually, I think the final sticking point in the SAG discussions [00:26:00] was that the motion picture producers had proposed that if you were working on a movie at any price above scale, they should be able to scan your image and use it in the movie. And then the thing that was a sticking point was, and then continue to use that image forever after without permission or pay Jesus. And of course, the union said, well, hold, wait a minute. And they were able to get the A-M-P-T-P, [00:26:30] the Bosha Predictor and television producers who agree, alright, all right, we'll pay you and we'll get your permission. So
Janko Roettgers (00:26:38):
The devil's advocate take on that is that there was two sticking points in that conflict, right? There was AI and there was the streaming money. And on the streaming money,
Leo Laporte (00:26:46):
Streaming money was a big one. The
Janko Roettgers (00:26:48):
Unions didn't get nearly as much of the hospital. I think they wanted half a billion dollars in streaming because the whole issue is residual. It's not happening anymore because movies stay forever in streaming services or they just get killed [00:27:00] right away because does stupid stuff. So the issue was that they really wanted a lot more money for streaming, and they asked for half a billion or I think one or 2% of streaming revenue and they got 40 million, but they also got these AI rights. So you could say, yes, they have a big win on the eye front. Or you could say, well, the studio's got the worst possible scenario out there in the proposal with ai, and then they took a step backwards and in return they've got [00:27:30] to keep a lot more money,
Leo Laporte (00:27:32):
The streaming issue. So the
Janko Roettgers (00:27:33):
AI might be the man that, yeah,
Leo Laporte (00:27:37):
Maybe it was a mistake to focus on the AI too much. Interesting. I mean,
Janko Roettgers (00:27:41):
It's probably not wrong to focus on it, but there's also other pressing issues obviously,
Leo Laporte (00:27:45):
Right? Yeah. Both the Writer's Guild and the actors were concerned because in the past they've been paid residuals on broadcast rights, on reruns, on tv. But nowadays with streaming A, the streaming channels don't [00:28:00] tell you how many people saw 'em. B, they don't pay you for the reruns. They're all reruns, I guess. Yeah. So they got something, but that doesn't sound like they got nearly what they were asking. Interesting, interesting. I hope both sides are satisfied. Or actually, I guess what you say is I hope both sides are mildly dissatisfied with the solution.
Dan Patterson (00:28:23):
Do you know were the studios or do the streamers now have to disclose [00:28:30] numbers or those still obviscated?
Janko Roettgers (00:28:33):
I mean, they are disclosing it more for different reasons now, which is that they are moving into advertising. And if you have advertising, then you want to know how much stuff gets watched in this particular Netflix. Now let's also advertise us buy ads against certain shows or genres and those things. And now they need to obviously disclose a lot more data than before. But I don't think that was part of this particular, [00:29:00] I could be wrong, but I don't think that was a big sticking point in this.
Leo Laporte (00:29:04):
I think there's also a push, for instance, if Apple wants to get more movies from big directors, they're going to have to do something because those directors, they want Academy Awards, but they'd also like to know that there are lots of people seeing their movie. And so I think the streamers are also realizing that in order to draw a big name talent, they're going to have to release some information about viewership. [00:29:30] I don't
Janko Roettgers (00:29:31):
Know. But then you also need to have a lot of us, which not all these services,
Leo Laporte (00:29:36):
There's a reason they don't mention the numbers, isn't there?
Dan Patterson (00:29:40):
The numbers are far better or far worse either way. It's not in their interest to disclose.
Leo Laporte (00:29:46):
Right? Yeah, much more likely. Far worse, they're all struggling. Yeah. Alright. Well, somebody's in the Discords or club to Discord saying, yeah, but if you have an AI doing hr, what happens when there's a dispute? [00:30:00] But that's the point is that the AI is just doing the dumb stuff, answering questions about the handbook, which frees up in theory an HR person to handle it if there's a bigger issue. I think that's the important thing with all of this is AI can go a certain distance, but there almost always needs to be some sort of human involvement for the best result. And AI is merely an assistant, but we're moving fast [00:30:30] this week. Also, the humane pin was announced tremendous
Brianna Wu (00:30:35):
Just before we did that. Leo, can we jump back to AI for just one super quick second? Yes, please do. Because I was really impressed. I think it said a lot about the AI announcements this week that Microsoft had such a heavy presence there. Friend of the show, Christina Warren, she was out there in person. She's basically the public face of GitHub. I was looking at [00:31:00] this and I was not aware of just how important cloud services were to Microsoft. If you look this up, back in the nineties and the Nils Microsoft office, the office suite was a majority of Microsoft's revenue today. I believe it was something like 7% is Windows nowadays and 30% of all of Microsoft's revenue, 33% is through Azure and other cloud services. So I think [00:31:30] when you've got literally the CEO of Microsoft out there talking about this, I think it really speaks to how much Microsoft is betting on this for the cloud. Absolutely. And there are a lot of really good, I feel like a really under-reported part of these AI technologies is their use for cybersecurity in both offense and defense. China has actually invested way more into this than the United States is as far as we can tell. So I think it's really, really interesting to see Microsoft [00:32:00] not just being there at the announcement, not just bringing their most important people, but to really be spearheading this as the future of their company. I think that's really significant.
Leo Laporte (00:32:10):
They put 10 billion into OpenAI and they are, I think the deal is to receive 40% of the profits, a little more than 40% of the profits. So they are kind of an owner. And note that probably a lot of that 10 billion was credits on Azure. [00:32:30] I think your point, and I think it's well taken, is that all of this uses a huge amount of cloud resources that AI is a boon for Amazon, Azure to a lesser degree Google and the other cloud service providers because that's what you need to do to train your ais. And still to this day, AI queries are all going through those cloud servers. They're
Dan Patterson (00:32:51):
Leo Laporte (00:32:52):
Dan Patterson (00:32:53):
We don't talk about this much. I had a hard time selling this story this summer, but the power consumption [00:33:00] constantly training models. They like us to think, well, we train one and we're done. But these models are constantly being improved and they're constantly competing with each other. The cloud or the power consumption on this makes the cloud consumption look small. So we are entering into a new era where if we rely on these AI agents, then the power consumption is just going to go through [00:33:30] the roof. Brianna, to your point, the guy who helped build an engineer, a lot of this, I think if we want to kind of read the tea leaves and look where Microsoft and much of the industry might be going is Jason Zander who really built the cloud services at Microsoft, he built Azure into the giant that it is. He helped push AI into where it is now, and he pivoted over to Quantum, which I think is going to be the next hype cycle of Microsoft [00:34:00] or the tech industry.
Leo Laporte (00:34:01):
Microsoft, if they can get it working
Dan Patterson (00:34:03):
Exactly. If they can get it working,
Leo Laporte (00:34:06):
I think fusion's going to be huge someday too. But neither quantum computing fusion is
Dan Patterson (00:34:11):
Yet Fair enough. Working.
Leo Laporte (00:34:13):
But yeah, you bet. Well, what's interesting, and we've talked about this before, that all these companies and VCs are putting tons of money into quantum and fusion that they want to find the next big thing. Maybe AI is the next big thing, but as you point out, it's very costly. [00:34:30] Although I have to point out, people have been complaining about Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies consuming vast amounts of power, and that was pretty much for nothing, at least with ai, we're
Dan Patterson (00:34:41):
Getting something, not pretty much nothing, literally
Brianna Wu (00:34:43):
Nothing. What did you talk about, Leo? I have a 9, 9 7 outside I got, because I bought a much of Bitcoin,
Leo Laporte (00:34:50):
I ran for Congress for
Brianna Wu (00:34:51):
Speculators and forgot about it.
Leo Laporte (00:34:52):
It's a good thing. Yes. Thank goodness you ran for Congress.
Brianna Wu (00:34:56):
I'm the very few people that made money on this.
Leo Laporte (00:34:59):
I have a Bitcoin [00:35:00] wallet with 7.85 Bitcoin in it. If I could just figure out how to open it. This is from last month's. I know this is from last month's New York Times, a peer review analysis published Tuesday lays out some early estimates in the middle ground scenario, not even the worst case. By 2007, AI servers could use between 85 to 134 terawatt hours every year.
Dan Patterson (00:35:25):
Leo Laporte (00:35:26):
Cow. That's like Argentina [00:35:30] or the Netherlands or Switzerland. It's about 0.5% of the world's current electricity. And that's just a few years from now. And of course it could go even worse. Get even worse. Yeah. That's clearly an issue, especially nowadays because maybe we don't want to burn up all of our fossil fuels immediately.
Brianna Wu (00:35:51):
I have to say, I found a really helpful use case for being AI this week. [00:36:00] I was in early this week. On Monday I debated a conservative at the University of South Carolina who wanted to ban all pornography, and I was trying to go through tons of studies and really just be ready with a bunch of data. And I found being AI to be really, really, really impressively good at going through that, giving me an update and helping me understand these studies and really isolating on the key figures, just [00:36:30] a fantastic use case of it because it can go and read the abstract and you can say, give me really, really good details on how many men in the United States seek inpatient treatment for pornography addiction. And that's the kind thing. This is good for a manual Google search of that would take you a really long time. So I do think this has a future. I've also sat through so many Silicon Valley cycles [00:37:00] of hype of products that just are not what they lived up to, like VR web three, and I think we're going there again. In some ways
Leo Laporte (00:37:10):
The future is a pin that you put on your use a magnet. Yes, we're going to get to that. That's the judgment we use and we have to use all the time. Is this just another hype cycle? Where are we in the hype cycle and is there some value? And I have to say I've been very skeptical of ai, but after this [00:37:30] OpenAI keynote on Monday, I'm starting to think I could start to see a future where AI is omnipresent in our lives in a variety of form factors and is a value. I can also see some risks inherent in it, which is why I'm glad to see the US and China agree not to let the AI control the nukes. This is the pin you're talking about, the November 9th, the humane AI pin. Now this is just one of a number of AI appliances [00:38:00] that'll be coming out.
There's also rewind.ai, which is a pendant, but the premise is, well, there's a couple of things. This is to replace the phone. So I think some of what's driving humane is, and there are two former Apple designers, is what's the next big thing, right? Let's get on that because it's too late to do a smartphone and win. Let's get on the next big thing. But it is AI device. Huh? This is just a smartphone without a screen, isn't it? Yeah, sort [00:38:30] of. It's $699, so it's smartphone priced. It's $25 a month. T-Mobile subscription required to power. It has a camera, it has a microphone, it does have a light that turns on when you record, so there's a certain trust. The projection thing is cool. This I think is a mistake because yes, it's a screenless phone, but the screen which projects under your hand, your hand has to be in exactly the right place. And as you can see, it's kind of blurry. This is Ron AM's review and [00:39:00] ours Technica, and he said, this doesn't replace a screen.
I don't think it's the most interesting part of it. I think the most interesting part is the notion that you can have an AI in your life with you recording your interactions that you can then query later about those. Imagine. I mean, that's what the rewind does as well. And in fact, it doesn't have a light. It's always recording. Imagine that you [00:39:30] go through your day or you go through your week. I was thinking this would be useful, and you could say at the end of the week, Hey, can you give me a list of all the things I agreed to do this week? Right? Maybe that's just me, but I agreed to do a lot of things and forget about it. Can you tell me who I met this week and add them to my contact list? There's things you could see that an AI would be very good at doing if it could just be part [00:40:00] record. Everything you hear an information retrieval system. Yeah, peripheral. Peripheral computing. Yes. What do you think?
Brianna Wu (00:40:11):
Okay. I am suspecting to get shot down on this. I love this idea. I'm definitely going to get one. Oh,
Leo Laporte (00:40:18):
Are you? Oh,
Brianna Wu (00:40:19):
Leo Laporte (00:40:20):
Percent. I was very interested before it came out, but once I found out the price and the limitations, I thought, okay, this isn't going to be the one. I'm going to get something like this. For sure, someday. Yeah.
Brianna Wu (00:40:28):
Okay. That's fair enough. [00:40:30] But I also, I got the first generation Palm Pilot and
Leo Laporte (00:40:35):
Palm, you're an early adopter,
Brianna Wu (00:40:36):
And that was a very useful device of what eventually ended up becoming the iPhone. Right? So I'm a really big Star Trek fan, and this is
Leo Laporte (00:40:46):
Star Trekk. Very much Trek.
Brianna Wu (00:40:48):
It's very much the combat and the idea of when you watch Star Trek, I'm always struck because it's the future, but they're not sitting there staring at screens all the time. They're walking [00:41:00] around their present, they're talking to each other, they're having their humanity. I realize this is a scripted show. That's the reason for it. But I do want something that will have less of this addictive draw me in factor all the time where I can be present, I can have access to information that I need for my job and be connecting in case I need a phone call. This is the ideal. I don't think it's going to work very well, but I want this product to come to market.
Leo Laporte (00:41:29):
I can understand you might [00:41:30] want it just because I got to see how this is and see where the issues, because it's the beginning of something. It's like buying an Atari 2,600. It's not that end all be all video game machine, but it's the beginning of something. Last week, Mike Elgin was praising up and down his meta ray band glasses, which can they record and they have an AI built in, you can talk to it, but they don't have that processing thing going on.
Janko Roettgers (00:41:57):
Next year, they're going to get more [00:42:00] of better AI actually where you can have visual identification. So right now it's basically a voice assistant that you can ask stuff like, oh, I'm here. What should I do? Or whatever. Similar to any voice assistant that you could access on your earbuds or whatever. So how
Leo Laporte (00:42:17):
Close is this, you think
Janko Roettgers (00:42:19):
Next year? Next the Raybans are going to, yeah, they said they're going to ship it next year where you look at stuff and then it identifies it for you. So that's very similar to the humane AI pin too. And that's actually, I [00:42:30] think the camera is the most controversial part about all of those gadgets, but it's also the most interesting one
Leo Laporte (00:42:36):
Because of Google Glass, right?
Janko Roettgers (00:42:38):
Or general privacy concerns. Obviously there's big privacy concerns around that, but the one part of the demo that I actually really liked at Humane from the humane ai pin was when he was holding up a handful of almonds and then the AI was recognizing that it was almonds and then telling him how many proteins there was.
Dan Patterson (00:42:58):
Totally. I think that was [00:43:00] total nonsense. ISTs sent me as, how many almonds did he have? Did they see the ones under it? How much did those almonds weigh? I think that Brianna, I'm there. I am a huge Star Trek fan. I think this is cool. It's a future I want. It's not a future I believe in really so serious. No, I'm not saying ever. I just am very skeptical of humane and of this product. I don't think they're bad people. I just think that this is trying to sell us a [00:43:30] science fiction future and I don't think we're there yet.
Leo Laporte (00:43:33):
Well, that is a lot of what these days billionaires seem to be trying to sell us is some book that they read when they were 18. 18 and they've been working their whole life toward the
Dan Patterson (00:43:45):
Janko Roettgers (00:43:46):
Dan Patterson (00:43:46):
Dystopian or something. Yeah. The self seriousness of the presentation doesn't help. It just triggers all of my journalists like, oh, I have questions for you. I have questions for you. And I mean, I am sure they're nice people and [00:44:00] they have working on a really cool problem. I think that this would be fascinating, and we do normalize all sorts of technology, and I think this could be normalized very quickly. I am just very skeptical.
Janko Roettgers (00:44:13):
I think there's a couple of things that people brought up that were really interesting, which was many people when they saw the demo at first were like, well, a smartwatch could do the same thing. It might have more apps on it, it might have more things, but all the things that this projector does in a blurry way on your hand, [00:44:30] you could also do in a smartwatch and the display would be much more higher resolution and you could interact with it and tap it and whatnot. The other thing then is smart glasses and elementary AR glasses could do many of those same things too. So the form factor might be the worst about this, I would say. And the projection, I mean, I haven't seen it and few people have seen it, and I think nobody has really been able to try.
Dan Patterson (00:44:54):
That's another thing. They didn't allow technical journalists to attend. [00:45:00] So people who would ask questions like that, what's the processor? What's the battery?
Leo Laporte (00:45:08):
We know now it's a Qualcomm snapdragon inside.
Dan Patterson (00:45:11):
It's Al. Yeah, but which one
Leo Laporte (00:45:14):
I think I've seen. But you know what, I'll stipulate that. I think you're right. I don't think anybody, maybe Brianna, but I don't think anybody's thinking that this is, oh my God, the next thing I got to have. But I think what's, and I don't even think you're thinking that, Brianna. I think what's interesting is [00:45:30] the area that we're starting to explore and how close we might be to something that really is useful. This isn't it maybe, but do you think you've got, it's kind of interesting. Sam Altman is working with Johnny Ive to create some sort of AI phone device. You've got Rewind working on a pendant that records all the time. I've shown this before. new.computer, this is the dot, which is not yet a device. They want to make [00:46:00] it a device, but right now it's an AI that records everything you experience, so you can call it up later, and I do see some value in this. That's what an AI should be. It should be an assistant. I think of the self-driving features of my car. I don't have a Tesla, but the self-driving features of my car, I would never trust to drive me home if I were asleep or drunk, but they're very helpful to me as a driver, as an assistant. [00:46:30] That to me seems like a more fruitful area to explore,
Brianna Wu (00:46:35):
I guess. I mean, Dan, I'm being really clear, my expectations, very tempered. I understand a lot of these tech demo stuff when it's like, add this to this or look through my calendar. I understand that's all bs, right?
Dan Patterson (00:46:49):
Yeah. And I'm being a jerk. I mean,
Brianna Wu (00:46:52):
Leo Laporte (00:46:52):
One second. You're doing your job, Dan. God bless you.
Brianna Wu (00:46:55):
I mean, I understand that that is hyped up and [00:47:00] earlier I was talking about AI being more of a flavor in the technology that we use. Once that works, Siri will actually be worth more than just transcribing stuff while I'm driving, right? We all agree with that, but I'm saying I don't regret getting early VR headsets because it was a really interesting view into an interesting area of technology. I don't regret getting a Palm pilot. Some things really work out. I [00:47:30] don't regret getting a steam deck.
Leo Laporte (00:47:32):
I regret every single VR headset I purchased. Every single
Brianna Wu (00:47:36):
Fair enough space pirate trainer was pretty good. But my point is what we all agree that the promises here are demo hype. We've all been in technology long enough to know that. Do you not think there's going to be enough use here that I can walk around for a day and leave my phone at home if I'm out with my nieces and trust that my phone calls will come through and if I need to say, [00:48:00] Hey, I've got a meeting, I can look at that or look up a stat and figure, because I imagine it will do that.
Leo Laporte (00:48:07):
I think some of this also is they're betting that people are going to start to reject the ubiquitous smartphone screen. And I have to say, I hope that's true because just wander around any city in America and everybody's stirring at their device, and I think that they're thinking, and they might be right, there'll be kind of a reaction to that, that people will say, yeah, yeah, let's not [00:48:30] have a screen that we're constantly looking at. Brianna
Janko Roettgers (00:48:33):
Leo Laporte (00:48:33):
Point. Yeah, sorry, go ahead.
Janko Roettgers (00:48:36):
I think there's many things that we don't know about this device yet, but from what we know, it doesn't seem to replace the smartphone in many aspects, even taking photos, and I don't think they have really shot that off during the demo, but if you don't have a view finite, it's sort of attached to your chest or wherever you're just shooting from the hip essentially. When you're going off with your knees, maybe you actually want to have a chance to take a photo [00:49:00] that's meaningful to you and not something that's just randomly taken by something that bounces around on your clothing. So I don't know if it is able to replace the phone quite yet, and I think actually maybe that's not the best smart, when smart watches first came up, people are also like, oh yeah, and I don't need to take out my phone all that often. That didn't really turn out to be the argument why people bought smartwatch. People bought smart watches because they're great health assistance. They help you track heart rates and [00:49:30] all those things, and
Leo Laporte (00:49:31):
They need a
Janko Roettgers (00:49:31):
Phone. That's something that the phone can't do. And so the thing like saying, oh, I have this device that can do things slightly better than my phone can do, but it also has all these downsides, may not be the best way to position and sell it, let's
Leo Laporte (00:49:43):
Be honest. I mean, the smartphone could do much of the, I mean if I carried it in my pocket or There
Janko Roettgers (00:49:49):
You go, you right
Leo Laporte (00:49:50):
There. I could do many of the same things, right? And much more capability built in, much higher processing capability, and I had a screen if I want to. [00:50:00] I think this is incremental steps. To me, the biggest story, and we're going to move on in a sec, but I think the biggest story here is how fast this seems to be. Not just moving because stuff moves fast, but it's almost alive in the way it's adapting itself and moving in a direction to fit what we're going to end up needing. And maybe I'm ascribing a little humanity to AI that it doesn't deserve, but it does feel like this is moving [00:50:30] along in an interesting way and slowly getting better suited to what we actually want an AI to do. Does that make sense? That's very fair. Yeah. Yeah. Alright, I want to take a little break and got lots more to talk about and I'm not going to drop the AI subject. We've got some experts here. It's really great to have 'em. Brianna Wu, who we now basically, by the way, just have a full coloring book for Brianna Wu. Dolly has been working overtime [00:51:00] generating coloring pages for your coloring book, including this one, which is Brianna on the panel today.
I'm not sure if I'm the one with the crown or the beard, but you got the idea. Yeah. Yeah. I don't think I can pull that luck off.
Dan Patterson (00:51:18):
It's not me.
Leo Laporte (00:51:19):
It's great to have you. Rebellion pack.com. Good to see you. Also with us, Yanko Rutgers, who is now doing his own firstname.lastname@example.org, which I just subscribed [00:51:30] to maybe even for the second time. It's so good. I think for the second time. I appreciate it. Remember that Really great stuff. I appreciate your reporting so much, KO, that I don't mind paying for it twice. It's that good. I appreciate that. Yeah, and Dan Patterson is also here who is now working as director of content and communication at Blackbird, which is a really, is it a nonprofit? It's a very interesting company. No,
Dan Patterson (00:51:57):
We're a regular company, but [00:52:00] we do work with nonprofits and government
Leo Laporte (00:52:02):
Organizations. It's about disinformation and attacks that can harm both your company or a nation, and you couldn't be on a better covering, a more timely subject. I think this is going to be the year of disinformation, unfortunately. Sad to say. Our show today brought to you by Express VPN, we know our audience wants to protect itself. It's privacy, it's security online. We know that because [00:52:30] you tell us that and because so many of you use Express VPN, the only VPNI use. Have you ever browsed in incognito mode? You know what a joke that is? It ain't incognito incognito mode. It's from Google. It's in the Chrome browser. Google makes its fortune by tracking your movements and interests online. They're an advertising company. In fact, there's even a $5 billion class action [00:53:00] lawsuit against Google in California because they said incognito mode ain't so incognito. Google's defense, they said, well, incognito doesn't mean invisible.
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I feel like I haven't completely done everything there is to say about open AI's dev days. [00:56:00] They cut the cost dramatically for developers. That's good news. It also, I presume means they're more efficient, either that they're just eating the cost, which is possible too.
Brianna Wu (00:56:14):
I mean, I have to assume they've gotten the, I mean, that is such an important priority for them to get the cost of the access tokens down. I think it, two shows ago when I was on leo, we were talking about this independent Reddit app that a lot of Redditors used to [00:56:30] basically access Reddit and do the moderation. Since the internal tools suck so much and Reddit jacked, this costs up so high that basically this piece of software was dying, right? People take this unlimited access to databases for granted. It's not, it costs the developer something. It costs the person hosting the database something. So I think getting those costs down, I think that's really, really exciting as far as the ability of this to [00:57:00] get more widespread adoption. And I think it speaks to this more specialized hardware that Microsoft has been developing for this.
Leo Laporte (00:57:09):
Speaking of the Reddit protest, that's right. We talked a lot about it when you were on a few times ago. It didn't accomplish anything, did it?
Brianna Wu (00:57:21):
Leo Laporte (00:57:21):
It's over. Right? And as much as I didn't want to admit it, Steve Huffman was right, it'll blow over. Do you still use [00:57:30] Reddit?
Brianna Wu (00:57:32):
Leo Laporte (00:57:32):
I mean, I feel bad for Apollo. I'm also
Brianna Wu (00:57:34):
Not a Moderat moderator.
Leo Laporte (00:57:35):
Well, I don't know how the mods feel. Some of them have been booted. I note that a couple of the Reddit subres I go to are still marked NSFW, which was their protest. But honestly, the protest made a lot of noise, but a lot of heat. But I don't think any accomplished was accomplished. Dan, you disagree?
Dan Patterson (00:57:53):
No, I think that it blew over. It
Leo Laporte (00:57:56):
Just blew over. That makes me sad because [00:58:00] I do think Reddit kind of forgot that it's made of people that it's users just like Twitter, it's users are what puts it on the map, which makes it useful, but
Dan Patterson (00:58:12):
Only anecdotal. Some of the subreddits I used to follow are, they seem pretty dead now, but some seem just as lively and popping as they were before, which is probably,
Leo Laporte (00:58:24):
And at least one Reddit app that I used to use. I really liked Apollo, and I think that's [00:58:30] a real loss in the Reddit. Reddit's own app is okay, but not great. But one of the apps I used to use for a long time was called Narwhal. It's back with a subscription. So they released Narwhal too, and you have to pay, I think a few bucks a month for it. But it was always a decent Reddit app. So maybe that's what happened. I mean, I think maybe the guy who does Apollo, Christian Sig maybe [00:59:00] threw a tantrum perhaps and could have perhaps considered this outlet. Or maybe he will make Apollo too and charge for it. And I think if people are very serious about using Reddit, it might be worth it. I pay Reddit too. I want to support them. I have a paid subscription to Reddit. But yeah, maybe there is a solution.
Brianna Wu (00:59:28):
I just think when it comes to [00:59:30] AI getting that tokenized cost way down, it means you're going to have smaller developers able to use the platform. It means you could conceivably see smartphone apps from third party. You could see people really ask big questions. Here's a really good one. I have email coming out of my ears and my nose, and
Leo Laporte (00:59:50):
If I could solve the email problem
Brianna Wu (00:59:53):
And I love, Hey, is a really good product. I understand their company is increasingly problematic [01:00:00] for a lot of different views, but they make a good email service. I mean, I would move to someone that had AI baked into email to help me just to understand it and remember what I've got to reply to quickly. That's a billion dollar company right there. So getting those costs down, I think this is the biggest consumer win there. The coloring books are fun, Leo. That's where the money is from
Leo Laporte (01:00:26):
Us. What's hidden from us is how much each of these pages cost. [01:00:30] Sam Altman said back in the beginning chat GPT back in the 3.0 version, that it was 10 times the cost of a Google query. I imagine it's at least that now, but yeah, and Google made a big deal about getting these shrunk down so they can be run off the phone. That's another thing that I think people want. I think people are a little allergic to sending their data to the cloud, but if you could have an on device ai, I'm not going [01:01:00] to use her until I can make sure her doesn't share my everything. With the outside world,
Dan Patterson (01:01:08):
It might be a stretch to call it an ai, but Siri on the Apple watch nine is better and I could see all the processing is done on the watch.
Leo Laporte (01:01:21):
Is it better? Interesting.
Dan Patterson (01:01:22):
I mean it's better than previous versions of Siri on the watch
Leo Laporte (01:01:26):
Transcription or what features
Dan Patterson (01:01:28):
The general performance? [01:01:30] I could just talk through it. It understands you. The back of bugs. Well, I routinely, I mean until this version of the watch, Siri just wouldn't often, it would just say, I'm sorry, I can't help you with that. Right? Yes, but these, it's true. So that's what I mean by better, but all I'm saying is I'm kind reaffirming what you're saying, Leo, is that perhaps if this is processed locally, that's a solution.
Leo Laporte (01:01:56):
There's another dark side to ai. You talked about it [01:02:00] in a couple of articles and on your podcast, synthetic media. We've seen stories about in high schools, about high school boys making deep fake nudes of their classmates, which is, I guess not against the law, but sure is awful. What is against the law? I think because I've seen people arrested for it, is deep fake child porn, even though no kid is involved. We've just begun.
Dan Patterson (01:02:29):
I think these,
Brianna Wu (01:02:30):
[01:02:30] Oh, go ahead Dan.
Dan Patterson (01:02:31):
No, no, no. Go ahead
Brianna Wu (01:02:32):
Brandon. I was going to say, did you see the story about this? This is a little dark and so I apologize, but did y'all see the story about the young girl that basically a bunch of her classmates made deepfake pornography of her and a whole bunch of other girls in grade? This is nightmare stuff. I mean, I think a lot of adult women in the technology industry have had this done to them, [01:03:00] but we're talking about children. This is a huge violation and I really wonder how that's going to affect their brain and their self-esteem and their trust
Leo Laporte (01:03:08):
Of others. Oh, I feel so bad for the girls because they had nothing to do with it. I also understand, I mean, teenage boys are,
Brianna Wu (01:03:19):
I remember, yeah,
Leo Laporte (01:03:23):
They got no frontal lobe basically. They got no impulse control. So if that technology exists, they're going to [01:03:30] do it without regard to the consequences. I'm sure they're thinking about it. It's happened in numerous high schools now. That's the sad thing.
Brianna Wu (01:03:39):
What's the Captain Kirk line? There's nothing wrong with him. That's not wrong with the original model.
Dan Patterson (01:03:45):
It's not going to change.
Leo Laporte (01:03:51):
It's not exactly a crime that's part of the problem. Well,
Brianna Wu (01:03:57):
I think it speaks to how, I mean, [01:04:00] we kind of put these tools out there, and again, we never asked how they could be really misused to hurt people, and I think it does.
Leo Laporte (01:04:10):
Technology outpaces our ability to legislate. I mean, that's obvious, right?
Brianna Wu (01:04:15):
That's fair. But I think, let's look at the coloring book prompt you just had made, right? They went through, they're like, look, Brianna was a public figure. Let's leave her out of this. Yeah, I
Leo Laporte (01:04:25):
Like that. It's probably
Brianna Wu (01:04:25):
A good policy, right? Yeah. So I think you can think through these things [01:04:30] and I think it doesn't speak to a lot of the people that developed deep technology that they didn't put any real safeguards in it or even ways to detect it after the fact.
Dan Patterson (01:04:42):
I just finished Taylor Loren's extremely online. Isn't that great. Which is a retelling of our recent history. We just lived the mid aughts, the inception of social media, mobile phones, and it feels [01:05:00] as though, at least when I was at CBS, I spent time on the Facebook papers. It was one of the last things I did there, and a lot of that was not just some of the toxicity that was created by unmoderated or loosely moderated social apps, but it is our, and Brianna, of course you know about this. I experienced quite a bit of this as well, but we had an opportunity. We have an opportunity right now to learn these [01:05:30] lessons and to apply these lessons. Are we doing it? I don't know, but this opportunity is right now, it appears as though we're going to relive recent history
Leo Laporte (01:05:45):
In 2019. Speaking of recent history, researchers concluded 96% of the 14,000 deep fakes they found online were pornographic.
Dan Patterson (01:05:56):
That was in 2019 before generative ai.
Leo Laporte (01:05:59):
That was [01:06:00] before deep fakes were any good.
Dan Patterson (01:06:02):
Yeah, it was hard. It was really expensive and hard to create deep fakes in 2019.
Leo Laporte (01:06:07):
Already the vast majority were pornographic. Yeah. I think humans, this is the other side of it. We are not to be trusted with advanced technologies, and yet we're very good at creating them. That's why I was talking before the show, and it may be a little facetiously with, I was saying to Brianna that [01:06:30] I despair over our future. You know what it feels like to me? They always wonder why we are not visited by alien species. I think if a civilization gets to this point and all of them have to, before they could be space faring, I would imagine they destroy themselves. It's like we never get to that space fairing Star Trek time because we cannot survive with advanced technology.
Dan Patterson (01:06:59):
Paradox [01:07:00] solution, right? Talking about dark, all the spirit species either go internal into VR where they destroy themselves
Leo Laporte (01:07:08):
First, or as Nick Bostrom says, it's all just a simulation anyway. Oh boy. I don't know. I shouldn't be. I am dark. I am dark.
Brianna Wu (01:07:22):
I worry, Leo, I've been doing, been coming onw for a long time.
Leo Laporte (01:07:25):
I used to be an optimist. Every
Brianna Wu (01:07:27):
Year you get so much more cynical. I
Leo Laporte (01:07:29):
Think [01:07:30] I get smarter.
Brianna Wu (01:07:30):
I feel the longer I've had my job, I feel less and less cynical,
Leo Laporte (01:07:34):
Which is weird because you're on the front lines of the dysfunctional American government and you're optimistic.
Brianna Wu (01:07:45):
Dan Patterson (01:07:46):
Brianna Wu (01:07:47):
Not that I don't see problems, it's that I see the efforts to solve it and it's iterative. The real truth is, Leah, we are seeing [01:08:00] the end right now of a certain chapter of government that's started with,
Leo Laporte (01:08:04):
You mean the old people, the really, really old ones.
Brianna Wu (01:08:07):
I don't mean the old people. I mean, there was an era of people leading both parties that ended with Bush two and with Obama, and no matter what happens at the end of this year, that era of both parties is going to be over after this. And I think there are new people standing up. There's new leadership structures being done, [01:08:30] and some of the people I'm working with that are federally elected officials, they really get this stuff. So I see them really working to have a bigger voice in how things are going, and it does give me a lot of
Leo Laporte (01:08:45):
Hope. That's why I have you on because you give me, alright,
Dan Patterson (01:08:49):
Leo, you are an optimist and that's one of the things that I think is very attractive. It's one reason it's fun to come on this show because you are an optimist and I think it's one [01:09:00] big reason that people listen to this show. They care
Leo Laporte (01:09:04):
About you. Optim. Are you counseling me that I should stop talking dark and start living? I should turn into Richard Simmons? No, I am. You know what? When I'm not being facetious and I'm really thinking about it, humans are simultaneously capable of great good and great evil and it's all within the same person. It's not like they're bad, they're good. [01:09:30] We create the finest music and art and architecture. Deep thinking, scientific discovery that is mind boggling at the same time is at the very same time, we simultaneously make deep faith pornography of our high school classmates. I mean, we are capable of both, and I don't know if one is going to win out over the other. I think it's always looked like this, that there's [01:10:00] amazing depth to our depravity and our inhumanity at the same time as this amazing goodness in us. And it's a weird paradox and I think it's always been that way.
Brianna Wu (01:10:14):
I think one of the things we're wrestling with is societal level right now is technology is turning a lot of us into the worst versions of ourselves. It just is.
Leo Laporte (01:10:26):
That's kind of my fear is that it has been balanced all [01:10:30] along, but what's happened is we've weaponized these technologies. We clearly weaponized social media and that's now the end of it, right? It's gotten to be dismal.
Brianna Wu (01:10:42):
And I hear you on that, Leo. I also, I think that when you get older, I'm in my forties and you see that things move in phases, right? And I genuinely do think there's going to be a moment that either like a conversation [01:11:00] I see universally online right now by people on the right and the left is they're just tired of the hyperbole online and I see a huge movement to just marginalize the people on both sides as take everything off context and scream at you about it all day long. I see a huge momentum towards shutting those people down. I see the people that are getting power in my field in new media are the ones that go through and really critically examine claims [01:11:30] and really look into that rather than just saying what the audience wants to hear. There's a huge growing market for that point of view on YouTube right now. People are turning into multimillionaires offering that point of view. So I think that at some point we are going to look at this era of human history the same way that we looked at some of the darkest periods of American history before us, where the worst of ourselves did take over and I think we're going to find a way to get past
Leo Laporte (01:11:56):
It. And you don't think this is an exception, this era that [01:12:00] we're in? This is just another phase.
Brianna Wu (01:12:03):
I think it is a phase. I think it's going to come to an end. Humans can't keep living like this. It's too stressful.
Leo Laporte (01:12:10):
Are you an optimist or a pessimist or do you just don't pay any attention to it?
Janko Roettgers (01:12:16):
Oh, I'm a realist. Yeah,
Leo Laporte (01:12:21):
You're German. You have to be. That's your job.
Janko Roettgers (01:12:23):
It's hard to be an optimist these days, especially just the last couple of weeks, obviously generally [01:12:30] looking at technology. I want to be an optimist, but there is also a lot going wrong. So yeah, you have to strike a balance and I can see, I understand getting bogged down and seeing the dark sides of it and getting sort of frustrated by laws are depressed by laws
Leo Laporte (01:12:47):
For sure. Well, and ultimately we've got to do something about climate change or there isn't going to be much more to talk about and that's why when you bring, and I thought it was very germane, Dan, you bring up the cost, the energy cost [01:13:00] of ai. We can, ill afford to be burning energy like this or to be
Dan Patterson (01:13:08):
Focused on these hand wavy existential problems. Sorry, Fred, the dog
Leo Laporte (01:13:14):
Is Oh, I like Fred. Oh, Fred. He's a good dog. He's a good dog. He's okay. Don't worry about Fred.
Dan Patterson (01:13:23):
Deeply concerned about the energy costs of that.
Leo Laporte (01:13:26):
He's very much got a dog in this hunt, as they say. Yeah.
Dan Patterson (01:13:30):
[01:13:30] Yes, he does.
Leo Laporte (01:13:34):
I don't know. You know what? I want to be cheered up. Thank you for saying I'm an optimist, Dan, because I don't feel very optimistic these days. Let's cheer up and talk about venom pinball.
Brianna Wu (01:13:45):
Leo Laporte (01:13:46):
Yes. But first a word from our sponsor.
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Audio has been my life work for 30 years. I'm amazed at what [01:15:00] an EVA mic and speaker bar will do. Let me explain what EVA is. It looks like a soundbar inside microphones using a patented technology called the Microphone Missed Technology, which puts thousands of virtual microphones throughout your meeting room, microphones in every corner so that people can be faced any way. They can be under a table. They can be on a table, they can be facing away from the screen. They can face through the screen and you can hear 'em all clearly these days. You need eva. Many businesses [01:15:30] are going remote, they're still hybrid and Eva, we've talked about it before, but they've just made another leap forward with the introduction of their pro series for really big rooms, the HDL three 10 for large rooms, 30 by 30 and the HCL four 10 for even larger rooms, 35 by 55, that's feet kids for the first time.
You can get pro audio performance and plug and play simplicity in the same system. Eva continues to amaze [01:16:00] it. Pros with the pro series, their online demo. Just go to eva.com/twit. You can see the online demo. You got the niva guy, he's under a table, he's behind a pillar. You're moving all over and you can hear him beautifully. Clearly. It's pickup performance that most conventional systems can't even match, and if you did put a hundred microphones in the room, then you'd have to consider cleaning them, wrapping up all the cables, the cost. Let's talk coverage. The HDL four 10. That's for rooms from 35 to 55 feet. [01:16:30] Now for that you got two mics and two speaker bars. Great for an extra large meeting room. They Duquesne uses 'em for lecture halls with two discrete wall-mounted devices. But here's something even better. You can actually, it could be one of those divisible rooms where you slide a divider across.
The EVA senses that and now they're independent. You open up the divider, they work together. It's kind of cool. A unified coverage map processes, mic pickup from both devices. They do it simultaneously [01:17:00] and in effect create a giant single mic array and then you close the divider and it's two separate devices. For a simple 30 foot by 30 foot room, a single HDL three 10 with one mic and speaker bar is all you need. And these are as easy to install as a soundbar. 30 minutes, you could do it yourself 30 minutes per, so if you get a four 10, it takes 60 minutes, right? 30 minutes for each. They continuously auto calibrate. So no, you don't have to go from room to room and tune them up. [01:17:30] EVA. Audio automatically continuously adapts to the changes in the room's acoustic profile. What's cool about that is you can add more people.
More students come to a class, all of a sudden it just adjusts itself. People leave, it adjusts itself. And with the EVA console, your IT team doesn't even have to go to the room. It's a cloud-based device management platform that takes the pain out of tasks like firmware updates and checking device statuses and changing settings and more. Bottom line with the Pro series EVA makes it simple to quickly and cost-effectively [01:18:00] equip more of your spaces for remote collaboration. Learn more at eva.com/twit N-U-R-E-V a.com/twit. This is such a good solution. Listen to the demo and you'll get an idea. eva.com/t WIT. All right. You wanted to talk about the venom pinball you tried to give me? I'm excited. You tried. What was that one you tried to get me to buy the Godzilla one?
Brianna Wu (01:18:26):
Godzilla Godzilla best pinball game of all time.
Leo Laporte (01:18:30):
[01:18:30] This is as good.
Brianna Wu (01:18:33):
Okay, so this is why I'm willing to talk about this because pinball is something that's really hard to innovate on. It is kind of been the same for a really, really long time. And Stern is like the Microsoft of pinball. They're the main game in town, and they put out this game design that is super, super innovative in using a ton of new technology.
Leo Laporte (01:18:58):
Wait a minute. It looks like there's a TV [01:19:00] screen on it, like a video screen on it? Yeah.
Brianna Wu (01:19:03):
Most modern pinball games have ADMD on it, a screen for scores, images and stuff. Oh, okay. It shows like cut scenes and all that stuff. Oh, nice. But they've really innovated in the way that this game works.
Leo Laporte (01:19:16):
There's Venom going up a little slider. You got the,
Brianna Wu (01:19:19):
That's carnage. Carnage is going up. The sliders, yes. See, you need to watch the movie, but what makes this really, really interesting is so [01:19:30] it's not just a game that you play and you try to get a high score. They mixed pinball with a roguelike design. So a roguelike is a kind of video game where you always start at level one and you play until you die and you get some points to level up some stuff is easier and easier, and then eventually you can beat the entire game. So that's what this is. You're constantly leveling up venomous. You play, you're trying
Leo Laporte (01:19:59):
Brianna Wu (01:19:59):
Interesting [01:20:00] at the end. Yeah. Does
Leo Laporte (01:20:01):
It get harder as you play it?
Brianna Wu (01:20:03):
No, it gets easier. This is a game that anyone can beat if you play this game long enough. This is the friendliest game Stern ever designed for new players. Yes,
Leo Laporte (01:20:14):
Because I'm not a pinball pro like you. I'm not a pinball wizard like Tommy. Oh my God. Is that four balls? That's crazy.
Brianna Wu (01:20:22):
It'll have eight for some reason. Eight. But the thing is with this, this is where it's so similar [01:20:30] Leo to do, you know how sometimes tech will put out a product and the old guard hates it? Like people that love technology hate it, but normal people love it because it's easy to use. That is men pinball. This is a game for new players. So existing pinball players hate this game and new players think it's just the most addictive game design they've ever
Leo Laporte (01:20:54):
Seen. This would be for me then. Yeah. Yeah.
Brianna Wu (01:20:57):
It's a lot of fun. It's
Leo Laporte (01:20:58):
Great. And how much?
Brianna Wu (01:21:00):
[01:21:00] It's very expensive. All pinball is you're going to be spending between 8,000 and 10,000.
Leo Laporte (01:21:07):
Do you have one tables?
Brianna Wu (01:21:09):
I do. I love it.
Leo Laporte (01:21:10):
Are you a paid shill for stern?
Brianna Wu (01:21:13):
No, no, no. I just love this as a hobby. Pinball is a really
Leo Laporte (01:21:17):
Interesting, you're not in any way just to make this clear being compensated a hundred percent by stern. This is not an ad. This is just You love
Brianna Wu (01:21:24):
It. I just love the game. The thing is, with pinball, you can buy a pinball machine and play it for a year [01:21:30] and sell it and take like a thousand dollars loss. So it's not the worst thing in the entire world. But yeah, it's a really interesting game design and they're mixing it with this online mode for it that is just really forward thinking.
Leo Laporte (01:21:46):
Should I get this instead of the Godzilla?
Brianna Wu (01:21:49):
No, I think you'd probably Godzilla.
Leo Laporte (01:21:52):
It doesn't really matter. She's not city. She's already forbidden both. So it's not really an issue here, [01:22:00] just asking for a friend. You and
Brianna Wu (01:22:01):
Lisa can come to my house and play my version. That's
Leo Laporte (01:22:04):
A better idea. I like that. I like that. We might be out your way sometime soon. We don't want to do that. Yeah, my mom is just down the road in Rhode Island.
Brianna Wu (01:22:17):
You've got to do it. Come on out, let come out. Let's party. You can party with the woos
Leo Laporte (01:22:20):
Party with the woos. What does Frank think of Dolly illustrations? Like these cartoons, these drawing [01:22:30] books that we're creating
Brianna Wu (01:22:31):
Of you? He has four Hugo Awards. He's horrified by all of this. Yeah,
Leo Laporte (01:22:35):
He's a super artist. In fact, I texted you, I was at the Popular Culture Museum in Seattle, Paul Allen's former experience music project, and there's Art by Frank Wu on the museum on the wall, and I said, look, Frank's in the museum. And he said, yeah, yeah, he's
Brianna Wu (01:22:53):
Really talented. He's a good guy.
Leo Laporte (01:22:54):
And so his attitude is what are these a threat?
Brianna Wu (01:22:59):
Yeah. He [01:23:00] sees as a threat. I mean, it's been helpful for him to kind of have ideas and mock them up when he's been working. Yeah, I would
Leo Laporte (01:23:08):
Think there'd be some value in that. Yeah,
Brianna Wu (01:23:10):
But I mean, obviously illustrators are very worried. Like Frank's last book that he wrote, I'm not going to tell you how much he paid for the cover, but it's a really good professional looking cover is called Espionage, and you pay that amount of money. And I have to admit, my first thought is how can [01:23:30] you make a living doing this?
Leo Laporte (01:23:31):
Right. Well, and the temptation might be to turn to Dali to do the next one. Right?
Brianna Wu (01:23:36):
A hundred percent. So
Leo Laporte (01:23:38):
Very scary stuff. Yeah. If you were an illustrator, this is probably kind of scary. Oh yeah, that's a good cover regime change. A psychics isn't beautiful novel. Yeah. This makes me want to buy the book. See, that's why it's worth it.
Brianna Wu (01:23:56):
Leo Laporte (01:23:58):
Because I go, Hey, that's [01:24:00] cool. It's about ESP, it's about Washington dc I got to read this. The old people reading each other's minds, the cover says it all. And I bet you, yeah, I don't know if Dolly could do this. I wouldn't be surprised. That's what's scary if I'm an illustrator.
Brianna Wu (01:24:23):
But when we were trying to get it to do concepts, it came up with a lot of stuff that was similar. Didn't college. Yeah.
Leo Laporte (01:24:28):
Last time we talked, you said [01:24:30] Frank was using it to give him kind of generate ideas to get him stimulated to write. It was like a writer's block breaker.
Brianna Wu (01:24:39):
That's exactly it. And then you kind of refine it. I mean, science fiction is dealing with this right now. You had one of their major online sites that had to stop accepting entries from anyone they didn't already know it was being dilu with AI submissions. So this is a very real problem.
Leo Laporte (01:24:59):
In fact, [01:25:00] the publisher just got a Hugo Award for his fight. His good fight. Good for him. Yeah. I was looking at the Hugo Awards the other day and I noticed that he, let's see, I don't know what the category was. Well, he got best was Clark's World. Must have been. Yeah. Neil Clark, he got best editor short form. But I think that they acknowledged, one of the reasons is they acknowledged his fight against [01:25:30] ai. Yeah. What else here? Bad news. Mozilla did a very good piece sometime ago about your vehicle and privacy and you have none, and the vehicle is pretty much collecting everything you're doing in it. In fact, Mozilla's headline was, it's official cars are the worst product category [01:26:00] we've ever reviewed. Per privacy. All 25 car brands we researched earned our privacy not included warning label. They not only collect personal data, they actually can collect data about when you're having sex. What? And there is no law against it. In fact, it's kind of worse than that. A judge in Washington state dismissed a class action lawsuit against car makers. [01:26:30] The lawsuit used Washington's pretty strong privacy legislation. The judge said, the federal judge said, yeah, you're right. The cars are keeping everything, your text messages, your call logs, but you can't sue because you can't show any harm.
Plaintiff's allegation that a violation of the WPA, the Washington Privacy Act [01:27:00] itself is enough to satisfy injury to a person without more is insufficient to meet the statutory requirement. Where is the harm? The judge said, I guess your boxer is probably not collecting data on you, Brianna. Maybe that's why you like old cars. I
Brianna Wu (01:27:21):
Really, I used to God mean this. I understand Lauren Southern is a controversial person on the other side, but we at least like each other. She's on [01:27:30] the right. I'm on left. We were talking about this just yesterday on Twitter. She's horrified that this is happening. I'm horrified. This is happening. And BMW is going to charge you to use your own heated seats. Do you really
Leo Laporte (01:27:45):
Think you're not going to sell your No, no. They backed down on that. They were talking about it. They back down. I
Brianna Wu (01:27:50):
Asked, was talking about it now
Leo Laporte (01:27:51):
Before I bought it, Howie is
Brianna Wu (01:27:52):
Talking about it.
Leo Laporte (01:27:53):
Yes. And everybody got so pissed off they decided not to do that. Fair enough. They wanted to though. Fair
Brianna Wu (01:27:59):
Enough. But [01:28:00] this is definitely coming for the car industry, and if you don't think they're going to sell every single bit of data out there to make a few more bucks on you and work with law enforcement on this, you're just wrong. So yeah, I am off the new car train
Leo Laporte (01:28:14):
Janko Roettgers (01:28:46):
Okay. But in reality, that's the question though, right? How
Leo Laporte (01:28:49):
Would they know this
Janko Roettgers (01:28:51):
Leo Laporte (01:29:17):
Yeah, that's good. That's a reasonable point to make. Although I don't think it's too farfetched to think it would be possible to know quite a bit about your sex life. Just if you could get into the phone. [01:29:30] I mean, well, this, right, did they stipulate Android Auto or no? No. Didn't your phone. So there's nothing, to give you an example, your phone, many people have programs on the phone for ovulation to track fertility. Right. Apple's watch will do that. If your phone is connected to the car and the car manufacturer can collect everything. It's really, the phone has to prevent [01:30:00] that. And I guess what the car manufacturers are saying, Hey, if we can get it, it's okay. We warned you
Janko Roettgers (01:30:07):
And the app make us, and those services that you use really have to be more aware of what they're sharing on a system level with other services, with the service that they use for login and all those things. But yeah,
Leo Laporte (01:30:22):
And now that the judge has ruled that there really is no harm for them to know that it's kind of full speed ahead. I mean, [01:30:30] I guess if we had a functional congress, which we don't, Brianna, I'm working on it. I'm working on it. Okay. I'm just saying if we had a function of Congress, you might ask them to pass a law to further protect your privacy. Although Washington State did, and apparently it wasn't enough, and it seems like there should be something done. The Mozilla report quotes Tesla's privacy notice. They say it's hard really to tell these car companies to [01:31:00] turn this stuff off, this collection off. Tesla says, if you no longer wish for us to collect vehicle data or any other data from your Tesla vehicle, please contact us to deactivate connectivity. Okay. Please note certain advanced features such as over the air updates, remote services and interactivity with mobile applications, incar features such as location search, internet, radio, voice commands, and web browser functionality rely on this connectivity. If you choose to opt out of vehicle data connection collection, we will not be able to know or notify [01:31:30] you of issues applicable to your vehicle in real time. This may result in your vehicle suffering from reduced functionality, serious damage or inoperability.
Janko Roettgers (01:31:39):
I do have to say, cars should have a rental car mode that automatically resets itself after return the car. And because everybody connects their phones to their rental cars and then they never delete that until you get into your rental car and there's all these past iPhones listed there with all this stuff.
Leo Laporte (01:31:55):
I got into my rental car and there's 20 other people. I actually had to delete somebody [01:32:00] before I could pair my phone. They had filled it up and I made the point of deleting it when I got out of the car, by the way.
Brianna Wu (01:32:08):
Yeah, no, but yeah, really think about how this could be used to drag you into civil or even criminal litigation. How many times did you go to X place? Oh, you're in a custody battle with your ex, Hey, let's subpoena the data to see if you drive over the speed limit by five miles. Now let's use that against you [01:32:30] in court. Again, this is a theme, but ask yourself how someone really deranged could use this data against you. And it's really, really scary. I don't like these car companies collecting this data. And the only way forward is going to be like there are people on both sides of the aisle. They've talked about proposing a privacy bill of rights. I think this would have very broad support across the right and the left, and [01:33:00] we just need people that will put it out there. I understand that people in their seventies, eighties, they're not really thinking about this stuff, but I think most people under 40 understand the value of this. We've grown up.
Leo Laporte (01:33:13):
I think you're right. That's a good point. That's a good point. As you point out in our discord this spring, the FBI admitted, yeah, we've been buying location data.
Brianna Wu (01:33:23):
Leo Laporte (01:33:25):
Brianna Wu (01:33:25):
Not because they're trying to market you stuff. They want to use that for court cases, [01:33:30] right?
Leo Laporte (01:33:31):
Yeah. What's the big deal? Ron Wyden asked Christopher Ray, the FBI director, does the FBI purchase us phone geolocation information? Ray said, well, to my knowledge, we don't currently purchase commercial database information that includes location data. We bought it all. I understand that we previously, as in the past, purchased this information for a specific national security pilot project, but [01:34:00] that's not been active for some time. Well, that's good news. They're not doing it right now. Right. We could trust that not this very moment in the past could be yesterday. The problem is that courts have often ruled that this kind of pen, registered data, location data and other stuff from your phone does not require a warrant. So again, this goes back to Congress
Dan Patterson (01:34:30):
[01:34:30] And for civil, like Brianna said, for civil litigation, this could be a nightmare.
Leo Laporte (01:34:37):
Yeah. Well, not just civil. I try to get auto insurance. Well, we see you've been having sex in your car,
Dan Patterson (01:34:47):
Or a very real case of that could be, I always delete the Geico app from my phone or whatever I have, but now I don't have that option. Right. Yeah. It's a very practical, very real
Leo Laporte (01:34:59):
World. They're tracking you [01:35:00] because you get a discount though. You do get a discount, right. For safe driving?
Dan Patterson (01:35:03):
No, I delete that app. I don't use that. I'll pay the extra money not to have that on my phone. But this is how they get around that. Yeah.
Leo Laporte (01:35:13):
Yeah. They don't need to have the app, although it's great if they can. I guess the more apps you have on your phone, the more likely somebody's keeping an eye on you about Honestly, I gave up. I'm not worried. You know what? Okay, [01:35:30] let's talk TikTok. No,
Dan Patterson (01:35:31):
I just said that could trigger
Leo Laporte (01:35:32):
You. Yes. My daughter uses TikTok. What? Actually,
Brianna Wu (01:35:39):
Dan Patterson (01:35:40):
Boy. That was a heck of a
Leo Laporte (01:35:41):
Debate. Wasn't that something, huh? And that's fun.
Brianna Wu (01:35:44):
I couldn't, I couldn't. It's my own job and I couldn't.
Leo Laporte (01:35:46):
We were talking about the Republican debate, which Roger Swami was talking about how bad TikTok was, and then Nikki Haley says, well, and then he says, well, your daughter uses it. And she says, keep my daughter's [01:36:00] mouth out of your voice. And then she calls him a scum. And that's the most exciting part of the whole debate. I think TikTok is a red herring, a straw man. Because really the issue is data brokers, not TikTok, not the Chinese government using an app to surveil us. They do what the FBI does. They just go to the data broker. They don't need
Dan Patterson (01:36:29):
Leo Laporte (01:36:30):
Dan Patterson (01:36:30):
What any other app
Leo Laporte (01:36:32):
Does. Right. And they all, I don't
Brianna Wu (01:36:34):
Agree. I don't.
Leo Laporte (01:36:36):
You think TikTok is a bad thing and should be banned?
Brianna Wu (01:36:39):
No, that's not what I said. And I've said that on your show many times. What I do think is Leo something, I am on the left, but I am not a communist. I'm just not, I've listened to their arguments. It doesn't make sense to me. I don't understand what they want to replace capitalism with. [01:37:00] That's fine.
Leo Laporte (01:37:01):
To each, according to his needs from each, according to his abilities is not a bad motto.
Brianna Wu (01:37:08):
There we go. Okay. But there is just factual that there is an absolute explosion with two generations of Americans and especially Gen Z that are phenomenally sympathetic towards communism, and they have a tendency towards looking at the world [01:37:30] through if there's an anti-American, no, you
Leo Laporte (01:37:33):
Misunderstand me. I'm not defending the people's Republic of China or the Chinese, the ccp, the Chinese Communist Party. Let's assume they're malicious and malevolent. That's fine. I I'm saying they don't need TikTok to get information about each and every US citizen. There are people gladly selling that on the open market called data.
Brianna Wu (01:37:55):
I hear what you're saying. But I think if you look at, I spend a lot of time on TikTok [01:38:00] nowadays for my job, and I think if you look at the stuff coming through
Leo Laporte (01:38:04):
Brianna Wu (01:38:05):
Generally speaking, I personally believe they're tweaking that algorithm to promote certain ideas that are not in our international interest. That's interesting. You can say, I have a tinfoil hat, but I absolutely believe it.
Leo Laporte (01:38:17):
That's not a tinfoil hat. No, you don't think they might use Twitter and Facebook for the same thing. Of
Brianna Wu (01:38:24):
Course, it's total spectrum warfare.
Leo Laporte (01:38:27):
So why would banning TikTok fix anything?
Brianna Wu (01:38:30):
[01:38:30] I don't want ban TikTok. I'm saying I think it's a vector for destabilizing the information space.
Leo Laporte (01:38:39):
I mean, yes, but we're surrounded by disinformation. That's how we began the show. We're in a flood of disinformation right now.
Janko Roettgers (01:38:48):
And it does seem that calls to ban TikTok only ever show up or get more attraction when certain points of view bubble up. [01:39:00] And maybe younger people are more interested in alternative economic systems because they look at climate change and conclude that this one isn't working. That might be, I share that. Yes. So you don't need Chinese propaganda to arrive at some of those points of view, I think. And Josh Hawley chiming in and saying, oh, we got a band TikTok because we don't like what young people think about the war in Gaza. [01:39:30] It seems like really a strong man argument to me.
Brianna Wu (01:39:35):
I agree with you and I hear you on that. And I'm not saying let's leap to the most radical solutions. What I am saying is democracies have to be able to have conversations for us to have stability. And what I am seeing that does really trouble me is there is a kind of disregard for democratic norms I used to see on one side of the aisle, and I'm [01:40:00] seeing a lot of it on my own side of the aisle lately, not differing points of view. People that fundamentally are excusing violence and do not believe in democracy. And I do believe that. I think it's not crazy to believe that China is a little less personally invested in policing that stuff than say as bad as Facebook is. I think they want a functional democracy here in the United States. So I think it is a relevant [01:40:30] question to ask who is controlling our information space?
Leo Laporte (01:40:34):
Yes. It's, oh, that's a fun noise. So you probably saw the stories this week that Mark Zuckerberg personally killed any attempt to make Facebook more sensitive to, well, lemme see if I can find this story to, I thought you were
Dan Patterson (01:40:58):
Going to say relevant.
Leo Laporte (01:40:59):
Mark Zuckerberg [01:41:00] personally rejected META'S proposals to improve team mental health. This is from court documents filed by Massachusetts in state court. Zuckerberg ignored or shut down top executives, including Instagram, CEO, Adam Ser and Nick Clegg, who's president of Global Affairs, who had asked Zuckerberg to do more to protect not the US democracy, but 30 million teens who use Instagram. I don't think you're right. I don't think Mark [01:41:30] Zuckerberg wants to undermine American democracy, but I do think Mark Zuckerberg wants to make as much money as he possibly can, and teen mental health is not on his list of things to protect. And then you have people like Elon Musk who maybe want to do both. Yeah. Zuckerberg vetoed, according to the Massachusetts documents, a 2019 proposal that would've disabled Instagram's beauty filters, which I think you could probably say contribute very much [01:42:00] to body image issues with the teenage girls. He wrote to his deputies in April, 2020. So they got the smoking email saying there's demand for the filters. And I have seen no data suggesting they're harmful. Matt, maybe he's right. I don't know. That's
Dan Patterson (01:42:18):
Not true. I mean, according to the Facebook papers, which leaked in 2021. Oh
Leo Laporte (01:42:21):
Dan Patterson (01:42:22):
They were very aware.
Leo Laporte (01:42:30):
[01:42:30] Yeah. I bring it up only, I mean, it is a story this week, but I bring it up also to say, I'm not sure that Elon or Mark or any social media executives motives are any pure than tos. Do you think there's Israeli or Hamas propaganda and disinformation being disseminated on TikTok?
Brianna Wu (01:42:56):
Yeah, I think it's across all social media. I don't think it's just on [01:43:00] one side. Yeah, it's everywhere. I think the goal is to destabilize. I think the goal is to pit us against each other, right?
Dan Patterson (01:43:05):
Yeah, yeah, for sure. And has been for a long time, not just by one adversary. Many.
Leo Laporte (01:43:10):
Yeah. I honestly think that all social networks are prone to this, right? This is,
Dan Patterson (01:43:14):
Yeah. The best social app I have on my phone is no social app. You would be shocked at the amount of time you can reclaim and mental health. You can reclaim by not having social media on your phone or not using social media.
Leo Laporte (01:43:27):
I actually went back Facebook, which [01:43:30] is
Dan Patterson (01:43:30):
Silly. That makes me sound like the old man. No,
Leo Laporte (01:43:32):
No, no. I went back to Facebook. I thought for this very reason, I should keep an eye just as I do on TikTok and other places on what's going on there. I have yet to see something that I would, and maybe I'm just insensitive label as propaganda from the Chinese government designed to undermine American democracy. Brianna, actually, I'd love to know what you saw that you thought did that, but I got to say Facebook is crap. I spent all morning this morning getting rid of bikini clad women [01:44:00] that in no way followed. Oh, there's some here they come. And even though I tell Facebook again and again that I do not want to see this image or my friend's images are in here, I want to see them. I don't care about this. And they still, I told you I don't want to see Anne Hathaway fans this morning. I want to
Brianna Wu (01:44:23):
See Anne Hathaway. I'll watch
Leo Laporte (01:44:25):
That. So apparently I say this all the time. I say hide all [01:44:30] from whatever, and they come back. I did it this morning. I don't want to see some ai. Jennifer Lawrence bikini shot. So I hit, I'm going to have to start blocking, I guess I don't know what's going on. I would like to know what their strategy with the Blue app is. Why do they do this? Why are they doing this to me? Is it because I'm a 67 year old white male from Petaluma? What's the deal? I mean, this [01:45:00] is a brand new account. This is not like I've given a signal that I want to see more of this. In fact, the strongest signal I've given in is please hide all posts from boats and babes, please. From now on.
Brianna Wu (01:45:17):
Yeah. I mean,
Leo Laporte (01:45:18):
I don't know how people use this horrible, horrible thing. No,
Brianna Wu (01:45:22):
It's really been my exact experience with it, especially with the reels feature when they were really promoting [01:45:30] that, where it would just start and loop, loop, loop and be some five second clip of something sexual and shocking and you can't stop looking at it.
Leo Laporte (01:45:39):
Here's the story of the day. Be prepared to see 90 year old Collins in a bikini. I don't know. Now this really is, this must be targeted, right? Maybe you want to see older women in bikinis.
Brianna Wu (01:45:58):
There we go.
Leo Laporte (01:45:58):
Nope. [01:46:00] And is that really the story of the day? Hi, Leo.
Brianna Wu (01:46:06):
Leo Laporte (01:46:07):
Benito. There's a way to get to your feed, to the old feed where it was just your friends, but it's like three clicks away. Oh, so it's a setting you have to go to. Feeds on the left. Okay, good. Benito, he's a young person down Benito Gonzalez, who is our technical director. Friends. That's it. That's just your friend. And will it remember that? No, you have to keep going here. That's what I'm saying. That's how to get to that. I [01:46:30] could probably bookmark this. Yeah, I'll bookmark this instead of Facebook and then would only be people I know. And ads. Well, ads is all right. I understand ads. We do ads. In fact, I'm about to do another ad. Nothing wrong with ads, my friends, but I don't understand why they're peppering me with thirst traps. It must work. Is it just me? I'm taking it personally.
[01:47:00] Oh and oh, it's definitely, it's clear that they're all talking to each other. So I bought a Timex wristwatch. I'm doing a retreat in a couple of weeks. I actually won't be here for the next three weeks. I'll explain that later in another time. But I'm doing a retreat in a couple of weeks, and I can't wear an Apple wristwatch. I had no technology. I'm not allowed to bring a phone computer or even an Apple wristwatch. So I bought a Timex watch on Amazon, a $30 Timex watch. So I'd [01:47:30] have a non-technological watch. I now get nothing. My Instagram feed is all watch ads. I bought it on Amazon. My Instagram feed is now all watch ads. You can't tell me they're not sharing information with each other. What did I do to give that away?
Brianna Wu (01:47:51):
I'm disappointed You didn't get an eighties Cassie watch list. I would've. It's a real missed stop opportunity. I would've, right.
Leo Laporte (01:47:57):
There've my wife's saying it used to be [01:48:00] ed ads. What happened? Well, I think it's an improvement. Now. I'm getting watch ads. It's very strange. It's like, I don't know. I just, anyway. Oh, I'm sorry. You wanted to see the watch ads. Bonita pulled up my phone. They're there. Trust me. Alright, I'm sorry. I'm getting a little personal. A little too intimate here. A little overshare. Oh, you're right. James in Las Vegas says it's because you [01:48:30] bought bikinis on Amazon. No, I didn't buy bikinis on Amazon. Brianna, I have that watch.
Brianna Wu (01:48:37):
I love that. Watch so much.
Leo Laporte (01:48:39):
And I just checked it. I'm looking at it and it still works. I have a Casio.
Brianna Wu (01:48:43):
You should use
Leo Laporte (01:48:44):
That. I should probably. I bought this on, could you not? I bought this on eBay a few years ago and it's still working. Should I wear that? So
Brianna Wu (01:48:54):
Just so people at home know. If you're listening to this, this is the eighties Casia watch. I literally have this little keypad [01:49:00] on it. Do you remember this? Where you'd have to enter in your contacts. It would be like for Leo, it would be like 9, 9, 9. Right. It was so awful to input stuff in. I wonder if it was
Leo Laporte (01:49:13):
Great. They might rule this TE technology. No, they shouldn't. It's not good technology. It's not the kind of technology you might wear. Not good
Brianna Wu (01:49:23):
Leo Laporte (01:49:24):
Yeah. It's like
Brianna Wu (01:49:25):
Battlestar. This is
Leo Laporte (01:49:26):
Technology. Do you remember that? There's plenty of technology on [01:49:30] this ship. It's just not networked. Yes, it's offline. Yes. I bet you that watch last longer than the watch you're wearing right now. You know what? I was stunned. I pulled it out of my drawer. I bought it as a gag and it's still working years later. Going to outlive your eye. Watch. Alright, I will wear it next show. I'll wear it. I'll show it off. It's very cool. Yeah. Oh God. Didn't you want this when you were [01:50:00] young? This was, and these were expensive, weren't they?
Brianna Wu (01:50:03):
Oh yeah. It was like $50.
Leo Laporte (01:50:06):
Okay. They weren't that expensive. I remember the first calculators, there were hundreds of dollars. It was a big deal. This was back in the slide rule era. Anyway. Oh
Brianna Wu (01:50:16):
My god. These are $200 on eBay right now.
Leo Laporte (01:50:19):
Oh wow. That's where I got mine. I don't think Maybe I did. I don't think I spent 200 bucks.
Brianna Wu (01:50:25):
Make me a deal, Leo. Make me a
Leo Laporte (01:50:27):
Deal. I'll send you mine. I'll give you, I'll wear it on Tuesday. [01:50:30] Well, you know what it is. Somebody's saying it's the anti Kevin Rose. It's like, yeah, I'm so hip. I have an eighties Cassio calculator watch.
Brianna Wu (01:50:39):
No, I think it would be, back in the day, it was kind of geeky. If there was a dude that was wearing one today, I would genuinely beelined to go talk to him because that's going to be someone interesting.
Leo Laporte (01:50:50):
I should have worn that to work today. I should have worn it. Darn it. Alright, let's take a break. Lots more to come. I'm going to try to draw a yanko [01:51:00] out of his shell. We're going to come up with some stories you want. Talk about the great Yanko Rutgers this year. Lopez do cc. When you were at Variety, it was Variety, right? Or was it Hollywood Reporter? Variety. Right?
Janko Roettgers (01:51:12):
Variety and then Protocol. Yeah,
Leo Laporte (01:51:14):
And Protocol. But when you were in Variety, you were kind of doing tech entertainment stuff, right? SAG Strike would've been a big story for you.
Janko Roettgers (01:51:23):
I mean, there would've been other people covering that because they have been covering Hollywood for a [01:51:30] long time. Obviously that's what they're known for. I was more on the tech and entertainment intersection, so I was writing all about VR and some stuff about virtual productions and all those fun things. You
Leo Laporte (01:51:42):
Still pay attention to that, or have you been glad to give it up?
Janko Roettgers (01:51:47):
No. No. I mean, I still cover VR and AR and all those things for my newsletter and yeah.
Leo Laporte (01:51:52):
Good. Well, I'm going to ask you because I want to know if I should buy one of them $3,500 Apple Vision Pro headsets. [01:52:00] Unlike you, Brianna, I regret every single VR purchase I have ever made and I bought 'em all. Oculus Rift Kickstarter. I bought the You don't like
Brianna Wu (01:52:14):
Leo Laporte (01:52:14):
Saber? I like it. It's good. But I mean, when's the last time you played it?
Brianna Wu (01:52:19):
It's been a while.
Leo Laporte (01:52:19):
Yeah, it's really cool for about the first few times and then an hour and then never again. I bought the HTC vi. I bought the Oculus [01:52:30] Rift Pro last year. What a waste of money that was.
Brianna Wu (01:52:38):
Are you going to get the Vision
Leo Laporte (01:52:39):
Pro? No, of course not. Are you?
Brianna Wu (01:52:41):
Oh, come on. I know I shouldn't.
Leo Laporte (01:52:46):
You could buy a pinball machine for that. I
Brianna Wu (01:52:48):
Know. I'll talk myself into it somehow. You know what we should do is Christina and I should just team up on this. We both waste money on the stupidest thing
Leo Laporte (01:52:58):
Possible share, and
Brianna Wu (01:52:59):
We can just ship [01:53:00] it back and forth to each other. Yeah, that's the way
Leo Laporte (01:53:03):
To do it. They're already taking Betts in the chat room on whether I'll get one five to one odds that I will buy a Vision pro. I mean, who bought AM three max?
Brianna Wu (01:53:17):
Not the max, who
Leo Laporte (01:53:18):
Has two thumbs and bought an M three max. This guy actually, I really like it. Really? Yeah, I know.
Brianna Wu (01:53:25):
I love my pro Christina. She was talking about trying [01:53:30] to sell her M one Pro.
Leo Laporte (01:53:32):
She was sitting here in this table last week and we both bought the same thing. Oh really? The top of the line MacBook. It's a fetish object. I don't need this much computing power,
Brianna Wu (01:53:44):
But I don't know, Leo. I was looking at it. It's precious because this one, I got the 16 inch screen from mine, and it works so well with the PSS five controller. People don't tell this to you. You can just push the PlayStation button. It'll automatically pair and Hades [01:54:00] runs perfectly on it. And I got to be honest, I kind of for a minute was like, now that you can actually game on this, maybe I should have gotten the max. This would be a legitimately good gaming laptop.
Leo Laporte (01:54:13):
You want to see Ballards Gate three?
Brianna Wu (01:54:17):
Yes, I do.
Leo Laporte (01:54:18):
It's pretty sweet. It runs very well, and it's interesting. This is the one with 40 GPUs and this is maxed out. Wow. [01:54:30] It only gets about two hours. Battery life plane ball,
Because I mean, normally this gets 11 hours. I mean, it's amazing battery life on the Apple silicon platform. But what's Apple's done that I thought was very interesting is they say, okay, you want to play this game? You want us to throw all the power at it? We'll do it. You won't get any battery life, but go ahead. So this is playing on a PC more? Yeah. [01:55:00] By the way, I still have windows running while I'm playing it. Where's Windows? Oh, there it is. That's Edge. So here I am with balder's gate running, windows running and the chat room and the IRC and it's, and I've had this maxed out by the way. I've seen everything. What? I guess we've seen everything. Benito. You're going to [01:55:30] have to help me though, because I'm stuck in this crypt. I can't figure out. I did get Gail though, past the beginning. Yeah, I got Gail. Yeah. Yeah, there's Gail. Go ahead. I'm listening. There's a shortcut in that way. How do you like my hat? That's a good hat, huh? I found that hat and I said, I'm going to wear that hat. I look like the Grinch and I need something to hide my grins.
Dan Patterson (01:55:56):
Anyway, there's a lever behind a statue, and if you pull that, you can go to a ladder [01:56:00] that'll take you out of the crypt. Oh,
Leo Laporte (01:56:03):
I'm just saying what? Okay, we're going to take a break. GForce
Dan Patterson (01:56:08):
Now is, as a Mac gamer, I have to use GForce now. It's like, yeah,
Leo Laporte (01:56:13):
Because you can stream it
Dan Patterson (01:56:15):
This place. Steam Deck is the way to go, but
Leo Laporte (01:56:18):
Oh, no, no, no. This good.
Brianna Wu (01:56:20):
Interesting. I'm going to try that on my M three pro. I'm going to
Leo Laporte (01:56:22):
Try. Yeah, I think it'll run fine on M three Pro.
Dan Patterson (01:56:25):
Oh yeah. It does not run fine on the steam deck.
Leo Laporte (01:56:27):
Dan Patterson (01:56:28):
It chunks. No,
Leo Laporte (01:56:29):
Dan Patterson (01:56:29):
A steam deck [01:56:30] and I got rid. The workaround is no. The way to run it is GForce now, and the steam deck, it runs fantastic.
Leo Laporte (01:56:37):
Okay. I'll show you the video options. I've maxed everything out. It's running at 30 24 by 1964. Wow. Yeah. I mean, everything's maxed and it looks beautiful and it's already too hot for me to hold in my hand.
Brianna Wu (01:56:53):
See, Leo, this is what I don't understand because it feels like I've learned my lesson. [01:57:00] I bought the maxed out Apple product before and you always end up spending, that's where they really
Leo Laporte (01:57:06):
Priced. Oh, they get you. Yeah. It was $5,000.
Brianna Wu (01:57:10):
See, I spent, well, I spent 4,000 on mine. If you count AppleCare, it was actually 3,700. But it's like I feel like you get, if you always go for that mid model, you can get the most life out of it. And then when they come out with something that's truly [01:57:30] like new, you can sell the old one because I'm old and there's going to be a market
Leo Laporte (01:57:34):
For it. I'm old. This is my last laptop, like my last car. So I wanted to get, that'll happen. I wanted to get the most I want to. This is future-proofed. Right. And I have to say, it is a good fetish object. It's a stupid thing to buy, but there's something about it that you just want it. [01:58:00] And Christine and I were both going, yeah, we don't need this. We could run a Chromebook and do everything we want to do. My precious,
Brianna Wu (01:58:09):
Does twit have a manifold markets thing set up? Can we bat? What's that on this knot? Do you not know? This manifold market is like a stock market. A lot of people do this in the streaming space. So I'm a frequent on the in destiny world. So I'm a character and I have my stock, and [01:58:30] people buy Brianna W Stock when they like what I have to say. Oh, really? But you can also buy it for questions to an audience so you can buy stock. Like will Leo end up buying another Mac laptop next year? I would buy that stock because I flat out totally,
Leo Laporte (01:58:49):
Hey, just to prove that I'm not completely full of it. I had an order for a 16 inch framework, the top line framework, which I canceled. I thought because it was going to [01:59:00] be my Linux laptop, and I thought, this is so good. I don't really need a Linux laptop. I don't need anything else. This is it. I'm running windows on this. I could run Linux on it in emulation. This is kind of the killer one laptop to rule them all, I think. I feel like, anyway, I'm spending my kid's inheritance. That's what's really happening
Dan Patterson (01:59:22):
Until M four and Ed.
Brianna Wu (01:59:25):
Leo Laporte (01:59:28):
M four and Ed. Huh? [01:59:30] Could I bet on manifold that I will and then make the money to pay for it?
Brianna Wu (01:59:38):
It's fake money, unfortunately. Yes. Yeah. Chad is not believing you either. Leo, I'm sorry. You've lost the crowd. My friend.
Leo Laporte (01:59:48):
That is our wonderful technical director, Benito Gonzalez. We love him. And he's the voice of God who comes down every once in a while and is the guy who's going to guide me. [02:00:00] He and Paris Martino are going to guide me in bald skate. Right? Sure. But actually, Dan has just given me the best tip of all. You didn't mention the switch behind the pillar.
Dan Patterson (02:00:09):
I wasn't sure which dungeon you
Leo Laporte (02:00:10):
Were in. Oh, I don't know which dungeon. I mean the first one. Yeah, I
Dan Patterson (02:00:13):
Don't, but usually when people are stuck in the crypt. Yeah, you made that up. No, I didn't make that up. I'm saying when people are stuck in the crypt, there's three. It's usually, usually the first one.
Leo Laporte (02:00:24):
You gave me a direction to go look for a hidden switch.
Dan Patterson (02:00:28):
Look for the switch behind that. Right? [02:00:30] The statue with the bright light on, right. There's
Leo Laporte (02:00:32):
A quick There's behind that. I can't open.
Dan Patterson (02:00:34):
Yeah, it'll open that door, right? Yeah. It opens that. And then there's a ladder that goes up.
Leo Laporte (02:00:41):
Can you guys just talk amongst yourselves for a little bit? No, I'm just kidding.
Brianna Wu (02:00:44):
Of course. Wait
Leo Laporte (02:00:51):
Or shut today. Brought to you by a lookout. Actually, this is very important. If you are in business, things have changed forever. The boundaries [02:01:00] to where we work and how we work, they've just vanished, right? But what does that mean? It means your data is always on the move. It could be on a device, it could be in the cloud. It could be across networks, frankly, it could be down at the local coffee shop or in TIMBUK two. Now that's great for your workforce, but obviously a challenge for IT security. That's why you need lookout. Lookout helps you control your data, free your workforce with at. You'll gain complete visibility [02:01:30] into all your data so you can minimize risk from internal and external threats, and you can ensure compliance. And by seamlessly securing hybrid work, your organization doesn't have to give up productivity and employee happiness for security.
You can have them both, and your IT department will love it because right now they're working with multi-point solutions and legacy tools, and they're jumping around and when you move from context to context and tab to tab, stuff slips through the cracks and nowadays [02:02:00] you cannot allow anything when it comes to security to slip through cracks. Lookout, single unified platform reduces that complexity. It's all there giving you more time to focus on whatever else comes your way. See, the bottom line is good data protection doesn't need to be a cage. It can be a springboard that lets you and your organization bound toward a future of your making and it can still be secure. Thanks to Lookout. Go to lookout.com today, learn [02:02:30] how to safeguard your data, how to secure hybrid work, how to reduce it complexity. Very simple. lookout.com. One thing, does it all? Thank you lookout for supporting this week in tech. I've learned a lot. This manifold markets, the switch behind the pillar. This has been an educational show, I must say.
Brianna Wu (02:02:53):
And Venom pinball.
Leo Laporte (02:02:54):
And venom pinball. No, you always come on and I always salivate over these pinball [02:03:00] things. Somebody's saying that the tip you gave me Dan not is for Elden Ring. You know Balder's Gate, not Elden? No, no, no, no. Okay, good. No, no. I know Elden ring too. Yeah, I know.
Brianna Wu (02:03:11):
Leo Laporte (02:03:12):
I'm telling. Yes, that's right. No, no, I'm just teasing and I'm very happy. Thank you. Thank you. Look, if we want to have arguments about video games, I'm happy to go there. So there's a considerable amount of expectation as there always is. There was considerable, [02:03:30] my expectation for Modern Warfare iii, which came out this week. Are you a COD guy? No, I don't play violent games. I mean games like that. No, I'm with you. I like Balder's Gate. Elden ring's violent. It's, it's too much battling for me, but you don't want to shoot people is what you're saying. I don't want to shoot people yet.
Brianna Wu (02:03:50):
I want to shoot people. I'm okay with that.
Leo Laporte (02:03:53):
Brianna Wu (02:03:54):
I love Call
Leo Laporte (02:03:54):
Of Duty. I'm sorry, but what happened with Modern Warfare three? Because [02:04:00] it seems like
Brianna Wu (02:04:01):
It's a disaster
Leo Laporte (02:04:03):
Kind of. It's being reviewed, bombed as they say. Is it that it's hard or is it that it really isn't very good?
Brianna Wu (02:04:14):
No, the usual Call of Duty game gets developed over three years. That's the norm. You said six months. They spat this one out in a year and a half, and it shows the single player mode is mostly these [02:04:30] pbu, GPBG, big battlefields with a lot of random things to do. The campaign sucks. It's trying to tap into some of the greatest Call of Duty moments in the past, like no Russian, it doesn't do it well, it's just not a great game. The multiplayer still excellent, but this is a franchise that they've been skating for a really long time and they are not innovating anymore and they need to put the work [02:05:00] in if they're going to try to sell the same video game year after year.
Leo Laporte (02:05:05):
Reviews of Modern Warfare three actually lower than Red fall. What? Yeah.
Brianna Wu (02:05:13):
Yeah. I didn't think you could get
Leo Laporte (02:05:14):
Any worse in red fall. Wow, that's bad news. Now this of course coming on the heels of Microsoft's acquisition of Activision, and one of the promises they made in order to get regulator approval [02:05:30] was that we will for at least 10 years, make sure that Call of Duty continues to appear on PlayStation. I've seen a lot of ads for Modern Warfare three Benito, you're not a Call of Duty guy either, are you?
I used to be. I mean, call of Duty is one of those franchises that's been around for so long.
Leo Laporte (02:05:50):
In a way, I think the quintessential Call of Duty fan is a guy like Paul Thoran, not a young guy, plays a lot online. [02:06:00] He's been waiting for this. I'll get his review on Wednesday when we do Windows Weekly. But the thing is, these guys are devotees. I mean, for the longest time, the only game he would play
Well for multiplayer, for a lot of people who play multiplayer, shoot him, shoot FPSs. That is the game on console to play. That's it.
Leo Laporte (02:06:21):
Yeah. And if you only play one game and you're devoted for years to the same game, it would be a big deal if the [02:06:30] latest edition was disappointing.
Yeah, but like Brianna said, the multiplayer is still probably pretty good and that population is a lot smaller than the population of the single player because everybody buys, they play the single-player game and then they put it away. But then there's that group who just sits and plays the multiplayer
Leo Laporte (02:06:47):
Player. Yeah, I don't think Paul will play the single player at all. Exactly. So
These are two distinct audiences.
Leo Laporte (02:06:52):
Oh, okay. So the problem is with the single player, not the typically, yeah, but these are maps, new maps, yes. [02:07:00] For multiplayer or no,
I dunno. I haven't played three.
Brianna Wu (02:07:03):
It's always a mix of new maps and old maps and the stuff from the campaign, but the thing is, a Call of Duty campaign can actually be a gloriously fun, stupid time. The Black Ops campaigns are universally fun. There's one, I forget the name of it. Kevin Spacey plays the villain. It is a swear to god amazing story. He plays a great character. At the end of it, you have to cut off your own robot hand and send Kevin space [02:07:30] falling to his death. It's amazing. It's a great time. It's like a big dumb action movie. So it's frustrating when you see what should be one of the highlights of the game year just completely fall apart because they are overworking their developers and not investing in new pipelines.
Leo Laporte (02:07:50):
Bloomberg cover games. Do you play?
Janko Roettgers (02:07:52):
I do not cover games and I do not play. So no, I don't cover video games.
Leo Laporte (02:07:59):
Aren't you [02:08:00] lucky? Neither do I, by the way, but I think this is a story. Why was there such a short 16 month turnaround on this?
Brianna Wu (02:08:09):
I don't know. I'm sure we'll get some breakthrough piece eventually to explaining what went wrong.
Leo Laporte (02:08:14):
Activision's biggest game, 30 billion in revenue over two decades. Well, I
Think that's probably it right there. They've been making this game for 20 years. Yeah, they're
Leo Laporte (02:08:25):
Kind of bored. They're
Trying to get it to the point where it costs as little as possible. It makes them the most money. Right? That's [02:08:30] kind of it.
Leo Laporte (02:08:30):
According to Bloomberg, the process was hurried because this year's game was conceived to fill a gap in the release schedule following the delay of another Call of Duty title previously planned for this year, modern Warfare three was originally pitched to staff as DLC as an expansion pack, but it morphed into a full sequel during development according to Bloomberg, which by the way, Activision denies. [02:09:00] But more than this is Bloomberg's reporting good reporting more than a dozen current and former Call of Duty developers say, yeah, no, no. That conflicts with what we were told. It was definitely going to be an expansion that they turned into a full-fledged release. Some staff at Sledgehammer who had to work nights and weekends to finish the game said they felt betrayed by the company. Again, reading from Bloomberg because they were promised they wouldn't have to go through another shortened timeline after [02:09:30] the release of Vanguard, which was made under a similarly constrained development cycle,
Brianna Wu (02:09:35):
And Vanguard sucked.
Leo Laporte (02:09:39):
The game story has received, and the story is for single player, right? There's no story in multiplayer. The game story has received bleak reviews from the largest gaming outlets, games spot critics se Doster offered a mediocre five out of 10, and the declaration that the story doesn't do much worth seeing, no tearing off your robot hand for sure. And IGN reviewer, Simon [02:10:00] Cardi gave the game four out 10 and wrote The game feels hastily put together, adding that. If this is the quality we've come to expect from Call of Duty campaigns, maybe it's for the best. If a year or two is taken to reset and raise the low bar back to the heights of hold,
Brianna Wu (02:10:16):
It won't happen. I mean, it's such an event every single year. Everyone buys it and everyone plays all through the holidays. It's just part of Christmas at
Leo Laporte (02:10:27):
This. It's going to be a grim Christmas this year. Ladies and gentlemen, [02:10:30] maybe you could play a different game.
Brianna Wu (02:10:36):
Leo, I do have some bad news. I have a meeting I cannot miss in 15
Leo Laporte (02:10:40):
Minutes. Oh, somebody told me this and I forgot about it. Alright, lemme do my last day. We know we got to get rid of you. I apologize. Yanko, I'm sure you've got places to be. Fred. The dog needs to be fed. Hey, can we talk about one story that I would love to Yes. When we come back? Yes. Final big story that Yanko [02:11:00] actually caress about finally coming up. I apologize. I know no interest in Call of Duty. I apologize. This week in tech, brought to you this week by Miro. Oh, I love the Miro. We use Miro like crazy. It can be used for so many different things. It's an online workspace for innovation, an incredible visual place, a central source of truth. So these days, with teams [02:11:30] in different time zones and working at home and in different workplaces, this is a place they can all get together and meet and work on a project together.
If you're a startup, a great place to put together your minimum viable product and you're pitch deck, if you're doing a dream product, it's the place for your home base. In fact, really great for, I mean it can do so many things, but really particularly good for product development. Six whole capability bundles from [02:12:00] product development workflows to content visualization, all powered by Miro ai, which is really handy for brainstorming, generating ideas or taking the contents of your mural board and summarizing all sorts of complex information instantly. That gets a really good use for a mural can work for any team, but product development teams get the full experience, offers teams the richest feature set of any visual workspace with specific tools to help with strategy [02:12:30] or process mapping. You've got facilitation tools to run effective design or agile sprints. Miro connects super seamlessly that the platforms you're already using, you use Jira or Confluence.
Yes, it supports that. We use it with Google, Google Docs, Asana. We use it with Zapier. The thing is, you can use all these tools, but they're all within Miro. You don't have to leave Miro to update projects or statuses. You can do it all within Miro and that also saves brain [02:13:00] cycles, saves energy, saves innovation because everything you need is right there. It will also save time. Nobody needs more meetings. Miro users report saving up to 80 hours a year, like two weeks a year by streamlining conversations and cutting down on meetings, having everything in one place. Miro just released a board video recording feature that's great for feedback, especially for people in different time zones. It's called Talk Track. It eliminates meetings. You pre-record [02:13:30] your thoughts as a video and put it right on the board instead of scheduling another meeting. The last thing I need, go on, try it out for yourself. Your first three boards are free. Start working better. Miro, MIR o.com/podcast miro.com/podcast. It is a great tool I can vouch for that. We use it ourselves. miro.com/podcast.
Leo Laporte (02:15:44):
And of course, if you're in Club Twit, you won't miss a minute ad free versions of all of our shows. The Discord, the live stream is going to continue in the Discord. You'll be able to watch live there as well. On our stage, we've got all sorts of content we don't put out anywhere [02:16:00] else, and it's only seven bucks a month. The reason I want to encourage you to join Club Twit is frankly we need it these days because advertising dollars seem to be disappearing from podcasting in general. So many podcast networks going out of business. That's the last thing I want to do. I want to keep doing this. If you want us to keep doing it, twit TV slash club twit, your $7 makes a big difference. And we thank you for your support. KO's big scoop. Amazon is ditching [02:16:30] Android for fire TVs and smart displays. So what are they going to?
Janko Roettgers (02:16:40):
They have been developing their own operating system in-House. So Fire TVs, Android, Amazon brought out 10 years ago, right? Or almost 10 years ago, I think it was 2014. And ever since they've been using something called Fire oss, but under the hood, that's basically Android based on the open source version of Android.
Leo Laporte (02:17:00):
[02:17:00] Same thing with the tablets, right? The fire tablets, they're running. Same
Janko Roettgers (02:17:02):
Thing with the tablets, same thing with their smartest place. The Echo shows, it all runs Android under the hood and it comes with a bunch of downsides, right? First of all, they depend on waiting for Google to release these things as AOSP releases. There also has been fights with Google in the past where Google has basically blocked them from working with certain TV makers for years. And so all of that has led to them for a couple of years now looking at alternatives, and I've heard some gossip [02:17:30] about that a couple of years ago and I'm sort of falling it a little bit ever since. And now they really seem to be very close. And I've talked to folks that told me the first device running this new operating system may come out as early as next year, and it's a Linux-based operating system. It's very web forward.
They're going to use React native for developers to build apps for this system. They're going to have a fire TV device out next year, but the plan ultimately is to move all [02:18:00] of the devices towards the new operating system and ditch Android altogether. And so that's tens of millions of devices eventually, hundreds of millions probably. So Fire TV alone, Amazon shipped I think 50 million devices. So the sticks, the pucks, whatever they have TVs with Fire TV built in, they will ship 50 million in a little over a year last year. So you can imagine once they start shifting all this to this new operating system, they're quickly going to have tens of millions of devices [02:18:30] running a completely different operating system out there.
Leo Laporte (02:18:33):
They don't pay Google for the use of open source Android though, do they? So it's not a revenue loss for Google,
Janko Roettgers (02:18:39):
It's not a revenue loss for Google. And one could argue that Google might actually prefer it, even though I'm not entirely sure, but there was always friction because Google doesn't like people who use forked versions of Android. They're putting it out there, but they have all these requirements. If you're a device maker, if you make phones running Google's Android or if you're [02:19:00] making TVs running Google's Android, you have to agree to these anti fragmentation requirements. In
Leo Laporte (02:19:06):
Fact, that's one of the things that
Janko Roettgers (02:19:08):
Leo Laporte (02:19:08):
Brought the d OJ lawsuit against Google is those restrictive covenants if you use Android.
Janko Roettgers (02:19:15):
And so that has been a sticking point for a long time and was the reason that for a long time you could only buy fire TVs from really obscure manufacturers and they weren't able to bring it to TCL. They weren't to bring it to ENS for a number of years [02:19:30] because Google was basically blocking these companies and saying, if you work with Amazon, you can't use our stuff anymore on TVs or on phones or on anything else. And so that scan anybody away in a really depressed Amazon's sort of market share
Leo Laporte (02:19:44):
There, who's going to be hurt by this? I think of two parties. One oh doctor's friend who goes around selling hacked fire TV sticks with all of the pirated streams on it, which is a big market.
Janko Roettgers (02:20:00):
[02:20:00] That was one of the first comments when I came to story old. Everybody else was kind of like, oh, this is interesting. It's going to be Linux, it's going to be fun maybe. But everybody on writer was like, oh no, how are we going to side load our head to stuff on this now? How are we going to do Cody and all this stuff? Exactly. So yeah, there's some people are going to be upset by it.
Leo Laporte (02:20:19):
The other party that might be upset is Microsoft because they have the Android store on Windows, but it's not the Google Play store, it's the Amazon store. And I think [02:20:30] if Amazon has a weakened interest in promoting an Amazon Android store, that could be a issue. The story is that Microsoft went to Google and Google said, no, no, you can't do that. So they went to Amazon and got the store from Amazon, but that's how you get Android apps on Windows right now is through the fire store. So we've watched that with some interest. See, that's a good scoop. I like it. Yeah,
Janko Roettgers (02:20:56):
It's probably the biggest ahead of fireman.
Leo Laporte (02:20:59):
So Vega is the [02:21:00] new oss. I always get nervous when
Janko Roettgers (02:21:02):
Companies code name
Leo Laporte (02:21:03):
Build their own oss. I mean that's, wow, okay.
Dan Patterson (02:21:09):
Will this also be, do the fire tablets still run a forked version of Android and will this cover that, those as well?
Janko Roettgers (02:21:16):
Dad is a very good question. So I heard a source that told me that they basically want to move away from Android for all the devices make sense, which could include the tablets, but the tablets are arguably the part that is the trickiest because if you have a tv, [02:21:30] you have maybe five 10 streaming services, you have a handful of apps really, but tablets, people download way more games, many more different apps. So transitioning all of that I imagine would be very challenging. Now, pure speculation on my side, but I would imagine that there might be ways to work around that. Maybe you run Android apps in a virtual machine, kind of like you can run on Android apps on a Chromebook where it's not really an operating system Chrome, but you can still run Android apps on it. So there [02:22:00] might be some workarounds in the transition time, but I am not entirely sure how that's going to look like for those types of devices. Amazing.
Leo Laporte (02:22:09):
We should point out, as you do in your article that Fire TVs run on fire OSS seven, which is based on Android nine and we're currently at 14. I bet you it cost Amazon a lot of money to keep these things secure. It would kind of make as expensive as it is to do your own OSS that they might want to move.
Janko Roettgers (02:22:29):
They have been always [02:22:30] in this follow-up position. Yeah, for sure. So for them to have their own thing and just release without any regards for whatever Google does, makes a lot of
Leo Laporte (02:22:39):
Sense and everybody on Twitter will be very happy to know it's going to use React native as the application framework. For some reason, Twitter has turned into the React native home base. Brianna, I'm going to let you go. I can feel you.
Janko Roettgers (02:22:51):
Thank you. Thank
Leo Laporte (02:22:52):
You. Feel you pulling away from us even as we speak. Sorry.
Brianna Wu (02:22:55):
Leo Laporte (02:22:56):
A really we've work to do moving
Brianna Wu (02:22:57):
In another time zone. I apologize,
Leo Laporte (02:23:00):
[02:23:00] Brianna. I'm usually
Brianna Wu (02:23:00):
Here from the whole party. It's fine,
Leo Laporte (02:23:03):
It's fine. We're wrapping it up anyway. Rebellion pac.com. Yes. Brianna Wu on the Twitter and soon on Twit social. What else do you want to plug?
Brianna Wu (02:23:15):
Yeah, that's really it. I've got a really fun project that's coming up for the beginning of the year, so we are doing deep canvassing this time around. We are going to be working with a ton of the top streamers in the Space, [02:23:30] destiny being one of them. And basically people, their streamers on Twitch are going to be living in canvassing houses, in swing states, going out every single day, talking in the community, getting people registered to vote and winning elections. This is literally teaching Gen Z how to not just talk about change, but actually get out there and do it. So I hope I can come on twit and talk about that [02:24:00] as we're getting a little closer.
Leo Laporte (02:24:00):
You sure as hell can? You can come on it anytime you want. Thank you Brianna. Amazing. Love you have a great week and we'll see you next time.
Brianna Wu (02:24:07):
Lisa's already ridden me about hanging out when y'all are in Rhode Island. Good. She
Leo Laporte (02:24:12):
Wants to play pinball.
Brianna Wu (02:24:14):
Leo Laporte (02:24:15):
Take care, Brianna. See you all soon. I also want to thank Yanko Wreckers, his new venture. His newsletter is LOPAs cc. You said this is a beehive newsletter? You like Beehive?
Janko Roettgers (02:24:29):
Yeah, I like Beehive [02:24:30] a lot actually. It's a solid platform for newsletters and they're very quickly iterating, so they have new stuff all the time. I can barely catch up.
Leo Laporte (02:24:39):
And you like the CMS brought
Janko Roettgers (02:24:41):
Out? Yeah, I mean it's prem. It's more for newsletters than for running a website, but the website looks pretty good too, I think. And I didn't even customize anything. Basically I use it out of the box. It looks great actually. I want to redesign the whole thing at some point, but I actually got to write this thing too. And
Leo Laporte (02:25:00):
[02:25:00] Yeah, nobody's got time for that. This is good. It's functional. One of the things that I do now when I subscribe and I just subscribed again for the second time to Lopez is put it in my Omnivore, which is a kind of a reader for newsletters. I can't, stuff gets lost in my mailbox. So now what I do is I use Omnivore for my subscriptions and I use a special email address so I can read my subscriptions in what is essentially a news reader, [02:25:30] but just for newsletters. So I really love this idea. So I will use my omnivore email address on the pass so that I can, so it doesn't matter what you use, I will be reading it as a newsletter. Thank you, Yanko, really great to see you. Thanks. Appreciate it. Thanks for having me. Yeah. Mr. Dan Patterson, director, great to be here. Content and communications, blackbird.ai. I think you're doing God's work there. [02:26:00] I mean, this information, boy, you couldn't pick a better time to be covering this. This is a mess we got right now.
Dan Patterson (02:26:10):
It's a interesting problem to solve. It'll be a
Leo Laporte (02:26:13):
Crazy year, and I like this term narrative attacks, you guys. Did you invent that? Because it's really a good description of what's going on.
Dan Patterson (02:26:23):
Yeah, it's an easier way. It's maybe not easier, but it's dis and misinformation can [02:26:30] be confusing, but everybody can understand what a narrative attack
Leo Laporte (02:26:33):
Is, and if you lose control of your story, man, you're in deep trouble. Very, very good story. Yeah, that is true. Yep. blackbird.ai and of course, news dot dan patterson.com. And you write a lot there too. Actually, I don't know how you have time to do all of this. I'm just, yeah, it's fun. Glad to have you back on the show. You're always fantastic. That's a newsletter I can subscribe to. Look at that, look at
Dan Patterson (02:26:59):
That. Yeah, [02:27:00] I mean, that's just ck, but maybe I'll move to beehive.
Leo Laporte (02:27:03):
I'm hearing good things. Yeah, a lot of people love Beehive. Yeah. Thank you Dan. Thank you Yanko. Thank you, Brianna. Thanks to all of you for joining us. We do the show this week in Tech every Sunday afternoon, two to 5:00 PM Pacific Time. That's five to 8:00 PM East 2200 UTC. If you want to join us, please do. This will be the last live stream available on the website. We're [02:27:30] moving the live streams into Discord into our club, so we will continue to live stream in the club For people who watch live, that's a small fraction of the people who watch the show. Most of you are listening or watching to downloaded versions of the show. Those will still be available on the website, twit tv. As with all of our shows, they'll also be available on YouTube. We're not killing the YouTube channel, so you can watch this.
We can tech on YouTube. It just won't be as we record it. It'll be shortly after we've put the beginning and the end on and taken any cuss [02:28:00] words out. There's also probably the best way to do it is to get Pocket casts or some other podcast app. We like Pocket Casts, but you get to choose and subscribe, and the links are there at twit tv on the website. Paste those in and you'll get it automatically, audio or video the minute we've finished the show. And again, if you do want to interact with us live or watch Live Club, twits a great option. Seven bucks a month and that Discord is there. We will always be live in the Discord. I shouldn't say always, maybe not [02:28:30] always, but at least for the foreseeable future, we'll be live in the Discord, so you can watch those live streams there. We appreciate your support in the club. TWI tv slash club twit. I will be back in a month.
I'm going to Las Vegas next Sunday for the Formula One race. I'm going on retreat after that with no technology allowed, so that means I'll be back December 8th, is [02:29:00] that what it is? The second week in December on the show. But we've got great people. December, no, I'm sorry, not December 8th, December 10th. We've got great people filling in for me, including our own Jason Howell. We've got some great hosts. I think the vendor Hardwar is going to do a show, so I will be back December 10th. I wish you all a wonderful Thanksgiving. I won't be here for that. For those who celebrate, I hope you're having a great Diwali for those celebrating the Diwali this week, and [02:29:30] I'll see you next time. In the meanwhile, another twit is in the can.