This Week in Tech Episode 954 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.
:00:00 - Devindra Hardawar
It's time for twit this week in tech. I'm divindor hardware, I'm a senior editor in a gadget, I co-hosting gadget podcast and I'm not Leo Laporte. He is often Las Vegas Following the F1 Grand Prix, I believe, so hopefully he has good seats and good stories to tell everybody, and you know what? That not really much is happening in the tech world, right? So he, this is a great week for Leo to take off. I think Joining me is a great panel including Alex Lindsay. How like? Hey, alex, how's it going?
0:00:25 - Alex Lindsay
Good, good to be here.
0:00:26 - Devindra Hardawar
Yeah, nice have you here.
0:00:28 - Alex Lindsay
I slow week for us. I mean, it was you know all the way up to the end. We just figured. We just talked about today.
0:00:33 - Devindra Hardawar
It was really right up to the, to the end of Friday. But I was like, oh, this is gonna be a chill episode. We are gonna talk about our turkey recipes. We're gonna talk about what we're thankful for. What I'm not thankful for is breaking news over the weekend. I'll talk about that. But also, joining us is Paris Mark. No Reporting at the information. Hey, paris, How's it going?
0:00:51 - Paris Martineau
Hey, I'm always thankful for breaking news, even if it's over the weekend. It's thrilling, it's one of those days where you check your phone every five minutes and something new happens. I love it.
0:01:01 - Devindra Hardawar
We, we are broken people. I feel like reporters, specifically also laughing. There's Anthony Ha, freelance reporter, former TechCrunch reporter, specifically, I feel like I was looking at all of my you know media friends, especially tech people, and we were just feeding like we were feasting all weekend on every little update. Oh, oh, sam Altman posted a tweet of his guest pass. That was the latest thing. So we're gonna be talking about Everything happening at open AI and specifically the the surprise firing of Sam Altman, ceo of open AI, you know, on Friday because of his board. It just kind of hit us all at once and I'm wondering can somebody help us break it down? Like Paris I feel like you were. You're probably following this closely.
0:01:44 - Paris Martineau
Yeah, let me give you a little bit of the tick tock here, and this is, I guess, put together with context. Uh Brown, noon Friday News breaks via the form of a press release that open AI's board has fired CEO Sam Altman. And notably, the thing that I think is like worth noting with this is the press release is like kind of Snarky for one of these press releases.
It says like they were fired. He was fired because he wasn't candid in his communications, and that's not something you normally get for a firing like this. So already the tech presses like hackles are raised. They're like this guy's out. What's going on? Then, a couple minutes later, or I guess within like an out couple of hours, we get word that greg, the president of open AI, has resigned as well. Around the same time, there is like An all hands within open AI. You've got the new CEO, or interim CEO, mira I'm forgetting her last name. She talks to people is like Microsoft has total confidence in opening.
I we're going to be totally fine. But over the last, the next 24 hours, news starts to break that. Not only Basically. What happened here was a coup. Sam Altman didn't know about any of this until he was put in a zoom meeting with the board and told you're fired. Mira, the new interim, mira miradi, the new interim CEO of open AI, didn't know until the day before that she was going to be the new interim CEO of a company. The president who has since resigned of open AI didn't know until he was put into a google meets.
And Over the rest of friday you start to have senior open AI researchers like resign en masse. It's absolute chaos there. By saturday we start to get news that, um, sam Altman and his president and some of the people who have resigned are thinking of starting their own competing AI company and are talking to investors. People are freaking out. You get word that microsoft didn't even know that sam altman was being pushed out. It seems like no one knew but the members of the board and kind of a small cabal of people.
Just wow yeah over the last 24 hours, we've learned that, uh, people within open AI are trying to get sam altman back and rehire everyone who resigned and ostensibly, if that happens, that means the board will be out as well.
0:04:06 - Devindra Hardawar
That was so we are recording this. On sunday night, I would, we heard and, um, I believe the virgin and the information was following Like there were discussions on saturday night about this didn't go anywhere. Apparently, as we are recording with, sam altman is on the premises of open AI and is currently Having this discussion with the board, so maybe by the time we are done with this recording, we're just we're going to break news live, like yeah, there is a non zero chance that, during the recording of this, sam altman Is reinstated as the CEO of opening AI.
0:04:36 - Paris Martineau
He is in the building right now.
0:04:38 - Devindra Hardawar
This is. This is I don't know. I cannot remember when last there was a media thing like this Alex.
0:04:44 - Alex Lindsay
Anthony thoughts. Yeah, I think that it's. It's, it's a pretty uh, it's going to be a fascinating. There's almost a whole book in in here that that is of all of things not to do. I think it's mostly a lesson book less as opposed to a book about where to go with this. There are some reports that that some of this started with a reduction of responsibilities for satskiver. Satskiver In the over the summer and this is probably where the story really begins is Him getting a little less responsibility over the summer, taking that badly and then starting to turn the crank? You know, and you know you're talking about someone who probably is not on the, you know, the far end of emotional intelligence scale. There's a, there's a picture that I saw like a whole build a whole company filled with that.
But, yeah, yeah, but it is, but but I think that the problem that they had was saying altman was Pretty far out there as far as being able to engage with people and engage with employees, gauge with the industry.
They didn't have a lot of other people that were able to do that and so, but I think that satskiver I, you know, started to turn this crank, started to build up this and I think that something you know, probably some issues that happened over the last week and over and during the, the conference last week, the a-pick conference, where Altman kind of casually says, you know, there's only been four times when we've really seen anything really happen with, with our technology, and one of them happened a couple weeks ago and I'm feeling that that that that's when Ilya goes, see, see, we got to get him out here right now before he goes any more damage.
You know, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah. But I think that really he had a plan to move that down the path and you know, and I think that if you look at, uh, you know, I think that the folks that voted for it are the folks that are the most concerned about the technology and I and I thought about it I was like I think that this might Permanently damage open AI in a variety of different ways, and that might have been their, their, intention.
0:06:34 - Devindra Hardawar
I mean it does.
0:06:35 - Alex Lindsay
Permanently damage it because they they think it's going too fast. They want to put a break on it and they're willing to spike it to do that. So I don't think that that it was necessarily. At first. I thought it was a huge miscalculation. I said that on twitter. Yeah, I don't know if it is. I think that that that damaging, you know, putting a spike in the company, what you know, um, is that might have been the intention. Yeah, and it's kind of what you get with this kind of when you build a board of academics as opposed to operators academics, uh, some business people, but uh, it's a weird structure and I just want to make some things clear here.
0:07:06 - Devindra Hardawar
You're talking about uh open AI co-founder and chief scientist, ilya Sutskiver, who is basically head of the research side, and from everything I've read is basically, it seems like this came down to a big, I guess, disagreement about the direction of the company between the business side, like sam altman side, and the research side, which is Sutskiver side, who really wanted to slow things down. But also, how could this even happen? Like, uh, anthony, can you help explain, I mean, what, what the heck is going on with this board? Because this is not a normal company. Open AI is a very strange organization overall.
0:07:40 - Anthony Ha
Right. Well, I can't claim to be an expert on it, so hopefully you guys will correct you're in the hot seat, anthony. But my sense is that my understanding is essentially that, you know, open AI started as a nonprofit and they're sort of a for-profit entity within it, but the nonprofit board still controls it and so the incentives and what the the board is that is essentially supposed to be Kind of optimizing for is not necessarily the same as it would be for a for-profit company. They're essentially not accountable in in quite the same way that a A for-profit board, which, you know, not to say that's like an amazing structure or a transparent structure either. It's interesting, it's certainly, yeah, but it was very surprising.
I think, as you read the I've, you know, just sort of Checking in with this over the weekend, you'd see the story start to get fleshed out, because a lot of people are like who is the open AI board?
Like who are the people making these decisions, and and so it. Yeah, it seems like Part of the reason they were able to do this is because it's sort of this unusual governance structure, and I mean definitely one of the things that when I read that initial announcement was I thought, oh well, they really he must have done something really bad. Yeah, like the way they worded it, you're like there may be something really terrible they discovered. You know, for various legal reasons they're not disclosing it, but I'm sure it'll get leaked, and it really seems like that isn't the case. I mean again, I'd not maybe other things will come to light but that it seems like much more about this essentially the schism within the company and essentially that people felt like they didn't like the direction that sam was taking the company in and and they Tried to take him out and it seems like have they failed because they didn't have the support of the rest of the company.
0:09:18 - Devindra Hardawar
This whole thing feels like Sorry, paris, I will get to you. I just it feels like an errands work in script. It feels exactly like watching the Steve Jobs movie, which I left, by the way but it is so dramatic and so heightened. Paris, go ahead.
0:09:29 - Paris Martineau
No, it absolutely does feel like this. I mean, I feel like it's unprecedented in business that a company's leader is going to be like Defenestrated, like this, and then somehow pulled back up into the window and the window closed.
But I was gonna spend a weekend in the span of a weekend, conceivably, instead of weeks or months. It's wild. I do think one aspect of this that is interesting when you talk about open ai's board being this nonprofit entity that's supposed to serve as a check on the for-profit business Is that it adds an interesting color to the fact that so many open ai investors, including Microsoft, are now pushing for sam Altman and his group to be reinstated, because that would mean a new board. And is that new board going to be nonprofit or for-profit? If it's for-profit, that could be very good for investors who have a, you know, vested interest in this and I Go ahead, do it else.
0:10:21 - Alex Lindsay
I was gonna say that the, the, the. We have to remember that that this board is not accountable to make to the benefit of the company, it's accountable to the nonprofit and so you know, so them making the decisions that they were put together there, you know, makes sense for makes sense in the context that they're that they have it there. But this grew way out of control, like this is so far out. It's one thing to say oh, we got to change something in a little nonprofit. It's another thing to have a 70 billion dollar, 70 or 80 billion dollar juggernaut Moving at an industry that's about to hockey stick and then dump. It is like, you know, throwing a spike into a, you know Into into a tractor, trailer engine at full tilt you know, amazing to watch.
Yeah, and and so, but I, but. So I think that I, I do think that now they have to decide what they are, you know. I think that you know. I think that, again, if you know sam altman, it'll be interesting to see if he's going to come back to it.
The, I think, the reason he comes back as he knows it's going to take a long time to Models again, so it would take two or three years for him to get back, and the industry could be in some other place by then To get back to where open ai is. The reason he doesn't come back, obviously, is because he has probably almost unlimited Uh funding right now, like if he wanted to raise a billion dollars by by friday, he would have it, you know, to do this all over again, and so so I think that that's the um, you know. I think that those are the ups and downs of that process, but but I do think that he clears the board if he goes. I wouldn't go back if I hadn't cleared Everybody who voted against me, everybody who thought about it and everybody that knows them. You're all out.
0:11:51 - Devindra Hardawar
You're all out.
0:11:52 - Alex Lindsay
I mean you just wipe out everybody that's that's connected to that and that and then clarify the board Reduce. I mean the reason that a lot of these big companies are big companies is because they are. They have an a very strong CEO or almost absolute control by the founders. That's the why, you know, if you look at google, facebook, apple, when it as it as it grew All these companies, amazon there was a very, very strong CEO or founders that had almost absolute control. Allowing the committee to start making these kind of decisions is crazy.
0:12:22 - Devindra Hardawar
It's uh, it's not un unheard of in the world of tech, though. Like looking at open aam, thinking like how how much this is like a hyper accelerated startup right, because Steve jobs was kicked out of apple. Right, jack dorsi was kicked out of twitter. It is a thing that does happen. It's strange to see it happen so soon, so that that's like the thing that's really getting to me. But also I think we should probably take a step back just for the listeners, like what the heck is open ai? Because I think even the very foundation of this company, um, is unusual. It's really strange.
It's, it's a whole thing, because it was, it was sam altman, it was elan musk, it was a whole bunch of, you know, those folks coming together to stop bad ai. And that's why, like, that's why this whole thing is really weird, very much like the simpson stroke Of of a principal skitter going to the, the burlesque house. He's like I'm here to figure out how to get out of here. Right, because they want their supposed goal, and the goal, uh, with the research side Is to is to create, you know, agi, uh, artificial general intelligence, but also Create it and then, uh, make sure it's not bad and it's uh, there's a lot of like ai, uh, I don't know, doom, say our stuff going on with them too. Like this is a weird company that Pushed itself to build ai and I think arguably did it better than anybody at this point, like more so than google, um, but also was never about taking over the world with ai, but then that that ended up happening, right, it's a very weird thing.
0:13:51 - Paris Martineau
Yeah, in um 2019, when sam altman became the ceo of open ai, he helped form kind of the for-profit entity that exists within this non for-profit entity, and the reason why they did that Is, uh, ostensibly they were hoping to like raise money from outside investors, including like microsoft, in order to Fund like servers so that they could actually train the best ai and accomplish their original nonprofit goals. And part of this solution is, um that there's kind of supposed to be a theoretical cap on the profits the company could generate for its principles and investors, which kind of Gets more complicated and I think probably gets to the root of what this conflict is about, which is ostensibly was kind of kicked off by simmering disagreements between altman and um people on the ai research team about what they're developing and how best to use it and whether or not to slow that down, and I think, yeah, go ahead, you know.
0:14:51 - Alex Lindsay
I think that one of the challenges is also, you can say what's all about the commercialism of it, but there's also a there's a side of research, uh, that wants to just keep it pure of all research in all areas. They want to keep it pure, they don't want to have it be. And then there's commercialism. But part of that problem with commercialism is also Continuing to have a seat at the table. The. The industry is moving so quickly. If ai didn't grow with it, it would just become this kind of book stop of this was a xerox park for everybody. You know, like everybody came in, they all went here and they all left. And you see this read hoffman left and elon musk left, all because they're doing their own things out of that. And you would have just slowly seen ai just kind of dissipate into nothing Again, able to grow. And so the commercial side of it is the more practical side of this. If we want to actually be part of the Conversation, we have to keep on growing with the industry that's in front of us.
0:15:45 - Devindra Hardawar
Um, arguably they're the ones like also accelerating the industry too, which is the weird. The weird like cycle. Open ai is in, but also the weird cycle I think the tech world is in right now, like I'm thinking about, like what happened with microsoft this year, folks, and early in the year, you know, uh, being chat became like the thing that kind of wowed everybody early on and seeing, um, you know them directly integrated chat, gpt, I think, kind of blew everybody away. Google was caught flat-footed and everybody kind of raced and genera of ai became like the thing we were all talking about this year.
But I was just at the microsoft event, um, in september, the one where they announced, uh, hey, copilot is coming to windows, right, it's going to be the new essential thing, and I couldn't help but, like, look around and be like I don't, I don't know who needs this, who wants this, and it's a tool that you also can't fully trust, right, because we, we still know the ai hallucinates, um, it's not always delivering factual information, it is pulling information from the internet, but not always like approved sources or something. So I remember asking microsoft executives, like what are you guys going to do when, like, these things are spinning out Wrong information to you know, grandma, who's asking for computations or something, or for recommendations for something? And the response I keep getting from people is that, um, we hope our users will understand that this is a learning experience.
And that does not feel like a good answer.
0:17:06 - Alex Lindsay
Yeah, I mean there's a lot of. There's a lot of human beings spewing out a lot of inaccurate Information as well on the internet.
0:17:12 - Devindra Hardawar
I don't expect my computer to do that, you know. I don't expect, like.
0:17:16 - Alex Lindsay
Yeah computer is limited to what it has access to, you know, and ai is very much like. I always think of ai. I have jet chat gpt open all the time, and I knew that it broke some curve when my wife who is not the kind of person that would jump into all of this she was saying, oh, I was working on these Christmas presents and I asked it for ideas and it gave, and I was like you're talking to chat gpt? She was like I have the app on my phone. It's great, you know she does it all the time, and so um, and so it's crossed.
Some angle of when it's really powerful is brainstorming. I'm trying to think about something. I'm trying to whatever. I'm not going to put this in a court of law, I just want you to give me some ideas and and some other. I make recipes out of it. I make a lot of soups that are made out of chat gpt, and so um and so the so it's good for those kinds of things.
I think that it's very book smart. So when we I have, I have a tendency to view theoretical knowledge as almost more dangerous than no knowledge, because You're you are interacting with the construct, not reality, and so so it's like it. It's like somebody who's read a whole bunch of things about something, about playing the piano. It doesn't mean they can play the piano, so so they, so they know a lot about how to do it. They just don't know how to do it. And so the thing is, I think chat gpt is very much like book smart folks who have read a lot of things about something, but until they actually do it, chat gpt hasn't had that opportunity, so it doesn't have that knowledge, and I think a lot of the hallucinations come from that.
0:18:35 - Devindra Hardawar
Yeah, it's gonna get better. Of course, like Paris and Anthony, like, are you? Are you folks like actually using any of the any of the AI tools? At this point, I use it as a party trick, that's it.
0:18:45 - Alex Lindsay
I use it every day.
0:18:49 - Paris Martineau
For what I mean? Soups, yeah, but yes, what are good?
0:18:51 - Alex Lindsay
tips. So when I'm brainstorming about something okay, I got, I don't quite understand how this technology works. I'll say you are now, the key with chat gpt, by the way is source protocol target and, and if you do source protocol target you, you, you get a very, very accurate, or much more accurate, view of things, which is you are this? So you are a teacher, you are Richard Feynman, you are whatever that is. Explain this to me, and this is who I am, who's received. So explain to me like I'm a fifth grader, explain to me like I'm a college student or whatever, and it will wire something together that is very effective, you know, and what I do is I I'll scan through that, but a lot of that. What it does is it gives me language and then I go to google and I start googling, but I know what to google for now, like, oh, I can find out more information about this because Of x, y and z now in mid-journey.
I use it for a lot of my presentation. I do a lot of keynote presentations and so so I do a lot of presentations and if I I'll say I want, you know I had. I had a presentation. I needed three confused guys with glasses, the style of Pixar over a plain white background, and so I get that and I key it and I put it into my thing and it's a funny, you know.
But I have, like, in a given presentation, I might have 20 or 30 of those images that I generated at a chat gpt, as, yeah, what we would call I used to do legal animation, another life, and we would have demonstrative evidence and evidentiary, you know. So we're demonstrative, you know, and and evidentiary, and I did mostly demonstrative, which is I can explain something to you. It's not evidence and it's not I don't have to prove it, I just am using it to explain a concept. That's what I find that chat gpt is really good at. It's what I use mid-journey for, but I have them all the time, you know, I get they're open all the time and and I think that and you know, it really does accelerate things that we're working on.
0:20:33 - Devindra Hardawar
So I mean, here's the thing, alex. I feel like I've listened to you for years, you know, so I kind of get a sense of, like how you interact with tech and you are a power user. You're a very technical user, right. I'm just worried when, like my grandma or somebody else is like starting to ask the same questions and it's just delivering information and that is the end of the conversation, right, like when they're not going to google to do the future research but they're running based on whatever the thing. I worry about people google.
0:21:01 - Alex Lindsay
0:21:01 - Paris Martineau
I think that's fair, that's all fair, like it's, like it's like no google is.
0:21:04 - Alex Lindsay
I mean, you're asking a bunch of random people what their opinion is about something. I don't know if it's, if that's that much more.
0:21:10 - Devindra Hardawar
That's an act of sifting through knowledge, though right, and not just accepting what you're given at first.
0:21:14 - Alex Lindsay
So and you should, and we should be doing that all the time with absolutely Everything that we listen to and see. You should be sifting information if you see something on the news, what? What are three other people? What are the three? Three organizations that don't agree with each other. So give me a liberal, a conservative and a middle ground. Whatever they agree on is probably pretty close to the truth and what they. Everything else is there so and so you have to, but you've got to constantly by. If you, if you want the truth, you have to constantly by triangulating it, not Accepting any one source as truth.
0:21:48 - Devindra Hardawar
It's uh, I mean, there's something to be said for using ai stuff as a tool. I think one of my favorite things right now is mac whisper, which is the app that taps into, you know, language models to just transcribe text, and I'm a reporter so I'm always recording audio, and the worst part of my life is sitting there and just like manually trying to transcribe notes.
0:22:07 - Paris Martineau
Wait, yeah. What sort of service do you use for that?
0:22:09 - Devindra Hardawar
It's. Uh, well, listen. So I used to use rev, which was like a really nice transcription service. Uh, it wasn't that expensive. Then we learned that rev treated its employees like like crap, like not so good. So we kind of moved away from rev and then I started using other things that were that were also like ai based Um, I think it was a comma, ai, I forget if that's the right company. Um, you check the order? Yeah, otter, it was otter for a while and they were also using like ai transcription stuff. But now, like with the large language models, I don't have to like send it somewhere, I can just like sit there. I have a 5 gigabyte large language model sitting in my computer that could just Give me really high quality transcriptions. It takes 10 minutes, but that's, that's like an hour. I don't have to spend doing this stuff and I can look at the copy and clean it up, but it's still pretty good and that makes my life Functionally better. So for me that stuff is good.
0:23:00 - Alex Lindsay
Yeah, when you think about accessibility, with these large language models, there's going to be a point where your average city council meeting will be translated in real time to 60 languages and that that point in time, when that happened, I mean while they're talking, you could come in and say I want to listen to this in, come here, or I want to listen to this in mharek, you know, and you'd be able to get, you'd be able to get that language for anybody in that community and you know it. That time is probably less than 24 months away. You know, like, at the speed at which this is evolving and so there are a lot of things we started using. Zoom has a summary. It has this thing where it'll listen to you and give you a summary.
We don't use it with external clients because we're not, you know, we don't want to weird them out, but we use it for internal meetings all the time. It is remarkable, like it's way better. I used to always be in a meeting with note to take note with somebody notes, because I don't take it and and I, I and so having it build do all of that for me was I mean, and it really it. It's kind of amazing, and those are the kind of things that that this is going to be able to do much faster, very soon.
0:24:02 - Paris Martineau
Yeah, I used to be a bit of a. I used to be a bit of a bear when it came to uh genai. But even last week on uh, this week in google we were talking about um chat, gpt and kind of the recent uh gpt marketplace that they've rolled out, and leo is a um has been making some of his own gpt's. He gave a couple of examples of let this happen.
0:24:25 - Devindra Hardawar
I feel like only bad things will come from this.
0:24:27 - Paris Martineau
This is what I thought as well, but no, they were actually quite interesting. It was like he had a bunch of different uh PDFs and texts relating to a programming language he's trying to learn. Put them all in his gpt and so.
So like set it up so that the um system cannot pull any information from anywhere other than the text he's put in there, put in a couple different websites and then any time he has a question about this programming language he can just ask his uh you know, custom gpt and get a custom answer Specifically from like 10 different source materials. And it is fascinating, I think that that is like a really that was the first like light bulb use case I saw for these large language models that I could see an infinitely scalable and like applicable to a bunch of different situations, like what you were just guys were just saying, like with um City council meetings. You could have a gpt of every city council meeting that has ever happened, including the transcripts for it, and you could just ask questions to that and get uh, specific searchable results.
0:25:30 - Anthony Ha
Yeah something, anthony, I think you were gonna say yeah, I was gonna say that I think a lot of these examples speak to the promise of generative ai and, and I think, like when I get a little bit more skeptical is the idea that it will be and should be, the sort of default interface for Kind of online knowledge, that this is the thing that replaces, you know, or like the new google is, you know, basically a chatbot, you know Interface for you know, some sort of future chat gpt, and I feel like that, I mean maybe at some point that happens, and I think this also is something that's happening, separate from the development, and ai is just like you know, that that's kind of 10 blue links model is kind of going away and I I think that maybe eventually we'll get there.
That it where it's actually a powerful interface, but it feels like there's this rush on the part of these companies said like this is absolutely the future, let's do this, and it feels like the underlying technology isn't really At a place where that it feels ready for that. And I mean, of course, and there's the self-interested thing of like what does the media business look like in that world? And I don't have a good answer to that either.
0:26:31 - Devindra Hardawar
That's a a lot of things don't look so great if we, if we scale this forward a little bit. But I can't. I can't imagine like what satchin, the della microsoft CEO, felt like as this news hit, because there were reports that he was surprised by this news as well. This is a guy who pushed this, you know, invested what 10 billion I think even more reportedly into open AI is basically centering the future of windows and office and everything Microsoft around it.
If you hear the term co-pilot, it's because they've been talking about co-pilots for years. It was a part of, it was a part of the programming thing that they do as well. So Microsoft has bet so much on it. So to have like something like the CEO of the company potentially fall off, I don't know it kind of rocks about. It reminds me of like when they were starting to do Windows 8. And I remember sitting in a hotel in Barcelona at Mobile World Congress while Microsoft was talking about the vision of tablets on Windows. I remember thinking to myself nobody's gonna. You took away the start menu, you idiots. Everyone's gonna hate this and everyone hated it.
0:27:30 - Alex Lindsay
So I think. I do think that it was a very odd move to not talk to anyone. Usually, if you're going to get rid of a CEO of a large company, of a $60 billion company, a there's a lot of proof about why you're doing it and B there's a lot of discussion about it. If you look at most of the other ousters, there's usually a bunch of people talking about it. It doesn't mean that they don't get kicked out, but it usually means that there's a bunch of discussion. I don't think they wanted to discuss it because I know, I think that the instigators of this new that have stepped out and got into the conversation that they would never be able to pull this off. And if the, if the, if the venture thought, you know, heard about it, they would never be able to pull it off. And now they're learning that they're still never going to be able to pull it off. You know like, and so the.
So the issue is is that I think that that I think it made Microsoft look really bad. You know like it, and I think especially that he's up on stage with Sam Altman on the week before or days before talking about AI and talking about the work together. I think that it's a it's a really complex thing and it's it's also why you know Apple doesn't look as crazy as they seem from the surface. So you feel like Apple really got fell behind. And Apple does this often. They kind of draft on everybody, like they just kind of like they just watch all everyone take a lot of notes and like draft and like it right.
They say if you're, if you're, if you're one step ahead you're a leader and two steps ahead you're a martyr. And they're just letting everyone kind of work that out, you know, as they just kind of follow, follow behind the front line and figure out where they need to go. They've got plenty of money to go. And I looked at this. I was like you know, if Apple could offer Sam Altman a billion dollars right now, like we'll just give you a billion dollars in stock and unlimited resources and solve any catch up that they needed to do. But I don't know. You know, I think that jumping in this quickly in this early Microsoft kind of put themselves in that position of risk. It's.
It's a very aggressive you know, and and a lot, of, a lot of it has to do with Google's been working on this for a decade, you know, like they've been doing this for a long time. I think everyone was afraid of the legal ramifications of AI, and so they kind of sat in the back until they were forced to move forward, you know, by by open, open AI and others to to just start moving forward, because now they're going to get left behind if they, you know, if they don't kind of bend the rules and see where the edges are.
0:29:43 - Devindra Hardawar
I do think it starts to make sense, like why Google was taking a little while, like the caution there, because there are potential issues, like we are now having the global discussion of it, like what the future of AI means, or if we're pushing too hard and not thinking about the potential downsides here, and I think Google was not ready for that conversation. It is very strange that Microsoft, of all companies, is the one like with the foot on the pedal pushing open AI to do this. So I find that really strange, yeah.
0:30:07 - Alex Lindsay
Google would have a hard, their antitrust would be harder if they were taking a leadership position in AI as well. So they, you know, there's a I think there's a certain level of they don't need to add more things. I mean, if you look at how Google works without the what we call AI, which is still a lot of algorithms that are there, it's like looking into the sun, like if you've ever, if you've ever, been in an advertising meeting with them over, like how this all works. It is, I mean, they're, the calculations that they're making are stunning, you know, and that's without gender AI. So so they, they definitely in Bard, you know we I play with Bard a fair bit as well and it it's competitive. You know, it's not quite as good as as open as chat, gpt, but it's it's definitely. You know they're not that far behind.
0:30:49 - Devindra Hardawar
At least there is competition, like I'll also say. I've used chat, gpt and Bard to do things like. I have to compare products a lot because I'm I'm a product reviewer, unfortunately, so things like what were, what were the specs last year, you know, compared to this year, what is the weight, and stuff like. Being able to just give me a table of information that I can just glance at is super useful and then I go and like typically go, you know, double check all that stuff and the numbers are usually good, because at least table specs are things that exist on the internet, right, so it's very easy to pull that data out and reuse it. I'm still worried about, you know, other things. It's probably worth taking a note, though we should talk about Sam Altman, because now everyone is looking at this guy.
I remember when I started covering startups over the over adventure beats, along with Mr Anthony Ha. I remember writing about Looped, which was his like you know friend location based thing, which came out before Foursquare. Everybody called it, you know, location, a social location company. That was like a pioneer in the space. It went nowhere. It sold for basically the amount of you know the amount of money it was funded for that's, that's why I remember. And then he was tapped to run why, why, yeah, y Combinator, and that also felt like a thing of like is he the role model for Y Combinator? I don't know, like, do you guys have any thoughts about Altman as a leader? Because he's not the tech guy, he's not the one producing, you know, the AI algorithms and, like, building these models. He's the guy kind of pushing to get things done right.
0:32:19 - Alex Lindsay
Well, but also, steve Jobs wasn't the one writing the code either. Right, it is someone who's asking the right questions, saying you know, killing the right things and pushing energy towards the things that make difference and making all the deals. I mean, if you look at like again, if you go back to Apple, look at Tim Cook. A lot of Tim Cook's job is to keep people from regulating Apple out of existence, and so you know, and so the CEO's job is to do a lot of things that are a lot of soft power issues. You know where you're not. You're not writing the code, but you are making huge impacts and keeping you know for a company as it grows. Keeping everybody just going in the same direction is like herding cats on cocaine. I mean, it's like you know, like everybody's going in a thousand different directions and you know they all have opinions and they're all excited, especially in the startup, and you have to kind of pull everybody. You know the CEO's job is to pull everyone together and I don't think that they had anybody to replace him to do that. Not only that, because he's so connected to the employees, him leaving would devastate that company. Like him leaving and building his own company, he'll pull half the researchers, you know, out of it and all of the ones that are aggressive, you know, like, like he's going to take all the aggressive ones and pull them out with him that wanted, that want to build big and so that would make it.
I mean, the company doesn't. I don't think the company lasts, is not, it could last. I don't think the company would be effectual Like we wouldn't think about it in two years. If he doesn't, if he leaves, open AI will be a, you know, it'll be some little, it'll be a little stone. That open AI did this and got everybody to do this stuff and then all these other companies happened, you know, after them, because that you know they've. You know, without him I don't think they can do it, I don't think they have the people to do it and people think that you could just put another person in charge. That's not how that works. You know there's a handful of people at any given time that can actually make those decisions and inspire people to move forward.
0:34:05 - Devindra Hardawar
I remember just you know, seeing him at events, seeing him at Y Cominator stuff too, and also being like he is one of those tech you know sort of people that have the like huge, unblinking eyes. So it's also like this man is part robot, like something. He is just like driven and, from what I've read, like that was one thing that Paul Graham you know, the founder of Y Cominator really liked about him that he was just so purposeful and so mission driven. There are quotes about Altman saying, or that he himself says, like it's very easy to get people to bend to your will, which is a very I mean, I guess, yeah, I guess people like that succeed in business. So, okay, anthony, do you have any Altman stories, because you were covering him for a while, do you? I mean?
0:34:42 - Anthony Ha
yeah, I don't have any like really fun stories and I've definitely like talked to him. I think he and I like we're on, like you know, stage together at some venture beat events and things. But I mean, if anything, I would say that I've probably, you know, I would say that objectively, it seems like I've underestimated him for a long time, because I remember having the same response when he took over Y Cominator and sort of you know, as the head of Y Cominator is supposed to do is like sort of becomes this font of startup wisdom and I'm like really like you got all this stuff from running looped, okay, but you know he's it seems. I mean again, I think there's some question right, exactly sort of why he left and how effective he was at Y Cominator, but it's certainly, you know, open AI. It's sort of hard to argue that he hasn't essentially become the face of an industry, I mean both in positive and negative ways.
But I think I think there was a long time where I just kind of like I, this guy who's like the same age as me and who had this sort of startup that wasn't that successful. I don't understand why we're talking about him this way. But since then I mean it seems like he, I mean obviously has achieved a lot, and I also, you know, to Alex's point, I think, give a lot of credence to the fact that you know the people who work for him at open AI are the people who probably know him a lot better than than, certainly, than I do. And the fact that they all were kind of like, okay, if he's gone, we're gone, I think seems seems pretty telling.
0:36:01 - Paris Martineau
Yeah, I mean, I think it's notable, that kind of one thing that is part of Samuel Oppen's mystique, at least at Open AI, is that he kind of personally was responsible for recruiting a lot of the key researchers and engineers from Google and other companies that ended up being like instrumental in launching chat GPT. So he kind of has the cultural and political clout to pick up his toys and go home when he's been kicked out of the company and people will follow him.
0:36:31 - Alex Lindsay
Well, I think that, also from a thought leadership perspective, he's like one of I don't even know who else sits in the one or two or three people that people consider the voice of AI at the moment. Like you know, like that, like that he is the. He's gotten to that point where people are following one Twitter, they're fault, they're watching what he's talking about and he seems to be in the center of all of those things and that and again. That's why he would be able to move to any he's you know, he'd be able to move to wherever he wanted to go and start something over. I think the only thing that would get him back to open, open AI, as I said before, is the worry of delaying, having to rebuild from scratch, even though it would be faster than it was before. Still a lot of processing.
0:37:11 - Anthony Ha
Well, I would also imagine that if whatever new thing he started, that he would probably be like locked in, like litigation with open AI for years in terms of like he can't just steal the resources to hire? These people like use any tech and maybe he'd be totally unclear. But I just think from a headache perspective it's probably way less if he comes back.
0:37:28 - Alex Lindsay
Welcome to California, though I mean there's not a lot of non competes don't exist, right, and they're not enforceable.
Yeah, and the thing is is that the problem is is that you get in trouble when someone, when he plans to leave and then sets other people up to leave with him, he's got to find the legal problems when you cut him off and allow him. But he can still call back and pull anybody he wants out of it. In California you can do that all day, you know. And so the thing is, is the fact that they fired him suddenly, without allowing him to do anything, leaves him in a. It's a much clearer path for him to go and just got the company. Then then if he, if he had decided he was going to leave, and then if he socialized it for two months that I'm leaving and you're coming with me and everything else, that is super complicated anywhere. But if you fire him, he can go back and just strip you, strip you dry, you know, in California that's you know. So again, that's the both the advantage and the disadvantage.
0:38:22 - Paris Martineau
Most recent update is a deadline has apparently been set for five pm Pacific time. We're waiting Sunday. We're waiting for the board to either agree to Altman's demands and or not. I guess part of the holdup is his demands involve, you know, the board basically stepping down and new people being reinstated, which is going to be difficult for the board to agree to.
0:38:46 - Alex Lindsay
I just think that for their to save face, they should just step down, like the board should just step down, because or they're going to sit on a sinking ship for the next two years being blamed for it. You know like, if I was on the board at this point I'd be like well, we overplayed that one, let's let it go. People will slowly forget who we were. You know like, like. You know like. Like you know like we'll just kind of sink back into the weird into the bushes. You know like we're just everything is Simpson's references.
You know everyone will just everyone will just kind of they should. They should step down and get out of the way, because otherwise they're going to sit on a company and every time something goes wrong, and every every time a we see AI, all these researchers leave, we see the company stumbling, it's all going there. Their names are going to come back up over and over and over again in just a self health version. I would get out of there right now.
0:39:35 - Anthony Ha
This was the first investor. I would imagine that also. I would probably be like not just let's get rid of these board members, but let's have a conversation about what the structure of this company is, and to what extent does the nonprofit fully control the for?
0:39:46 - Alex Lindsay
profit. And if anyone thought they're create a crazy structure for their company, you can see every VC now is going to be like no, no, like we hear that often when you do a startup and they're like no, they don't want anything complicated, they just want you to build a C Corp and have everybody put money into it and let's not make this complicated. And and this they took the chance on and it's a, it is a crazy. I mean, I think it's. It's crazy. It's crazy. You know structure, if you, if you look at it I have to quickly up anyway, you, it's just a crazy structure that they it's sort.
0:40:19 - Devindra Hardawar
I mean, it's certainly, certainly, certainly a wild structure Like we talked about this, like it was founded as a nonprofit, that nonprofits still exist, but it controls the for profit subsidiary is subsidiary, which is a capped profit thing. One thing I want to ask before we move off of this is it isn't a good thing that maybe the reason it was so complicated is because they they kind of had this true belief that AI could destroy us all, like this was. This was an anti apocalypse organization Basically Alton has talked about, like he is a doomsday prepper. He is the guy he has. He has a whole bunker set up somewhere. He could fly to it. He is ready to, you know, survive based on whatever disaster could happen. It's a bunch of people who have very weird visions of the future, basically controlling where AI is going now. Like do we do? We think should open AI be the ones doing this? Because I feel like that's part of the problem too.
0:41:14 - Alex Lindsay
Well, who, if not them? I mean at least they, at least they had a good intention when they started.
I mean everybody else is just is just turning the gas on, you know, and not really worried about it.
And I think that because a lot of this stuff was open sourced early on or or made available, it kind of made it very hard to defend, like it's not, like you just got a company down, it's over, like the Pandora's box is opened and there is no way anybody's going to put it back. You know, I, yeah, always anyone's going to put it back in the box, and so so at this point you have to kind of write it out this is this is what I was looking for before, this is this, this, this is the diagram you know. And so, man, this really complex diagram here, where you have the, you know, you have your, you have this, you know. So here's, this is what started, right. And then you have, you have this, you know to build this holding company for the employees and the investors, and then this is what everybody put their money into here, and then this controls this and this is this has to be, in my opinion, probably simplified.
0:42:18 - Devindra Hardawar
And meanwhile the board, like if we should make this clear the board has no stake in this company. Like a lot of other companies, if the company gets rich, the board gets rich, like that is their impetus to make money, not literally, not the thing here. They are trying to stop that a like that has always been the goal, apparently.
0:42:36 - Alex Lindsay
Yeah, I mean, I think, as a utopian view, I think that that made sense, but I think that the thing is is that, and with no sudden moves, it still makes sense to have to have a board, but this board that they have right now really belonged as a board of advisors.
The talk that they talked to, not the board of directors, like you know, like, so so the thing is is that I think that what they need to do is have a board of advisors. It's made from the nonprofit, but the board of directors that makes a decision on who's running the company should be a standard board of director with normal board members that aren't in, you know, for the most part in academia, and you know, and not allowed to. You don't have the board of advisors running with knives, you know like. You know, like that's not, that's not their role, and so these, this, this group, has to be moved to an advisory role and have the board of directors actually done that's, or give up and let AI dump, you know, dump into the, into the sea, you know. I mean, they're able to open AI, you know, and but it's not, it's going to go into the sea if they let him go. You know like it's not going to stick around.
0:43:34 - Devindra Hardawar
There's more. Yeah, yeah, go ahead.
0:43:36 - Paris Martineau
I have a question for all of you guys. We're coming up. We got two hours till the deadline. What do you guys think is going to happen? Give me your predictions.
0:43:44 - Devindra Hardawar
I don't, I don't. I don't think the board's gonna leave. I think they're, I think they're gonna sit tight because they there was no reason for them to. The goal is their fear of, like, what open AI is doing, and I think everything we've seen from from Altman is that he's just pushing all the way, like it doesn't even seem like he has those fears. He just wants the big AI. That's my thing, let's, let's do this, and then we need to go to an ad for Leo. So let's quickly. What do you guys think?
0:44:08 - Alex Lindsay
I give it 75%. That I agree with you. The board doesn't doesn't change and within two years, open AI is kind of a footnote in what, what happens and and all heck breaks loose, you know, like in AI, because they're no longer contained by the company that has got this kind of control. So 25%, everybody steps down. So you know Sutskiver and you know everyone connected to them just just is going to, is gone. So I give it a 75, 25.
0:44:33 - Anthony Ha
Anthony, I think Sam comes back, the board steps down. Maybe there's some sort of concession for to sort of save face for them, where they get sort of there's some sort of advisory board that they get a representative in or they get something where they're still, like, ostensibly involved with the company and its mission. But but I think that it's sort of hard to. I think that they probably can see that the there's not really a path forward for the company if they stay you know what we will see?
0:45:00 - Devindra Hardawar
I mean maybe. Maybe we will have the stamina to just keep going. Folks like like a New York New Year's Eve show like let's just keep going.
0:45:07 - Paris Martineau
Let's just keep getting drunker and drunker like Anderson Cooper on New Year's Eve.
0:45:11 - Alex Lindsay
Yeah, absolutely. We take a break for a minute and say we're going to be back at five, like we can't stop, we gotta keep going.
0:45:18 - Devindra Hardawar
Yeah, this is our duty now, we have, we have been stuck here. All right, let's, let's, let's break for an ad. Let me, let me just say this properly All right, folks, we have a little more to say about OpenAI, but let's move to Leo for some sponsor ads.
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0:48:07 - Devindra Hardawar
You know I don't think. Leo, when he recorded that message, just realized like how much he would be missing this conversation.
0:48:15 - Paris Martineau
Is there anything else we want to Deep in it?
0:48:16 - Devindra Hardawar
We're just we're in it. This could be a marathon show, because I do feel like we we at least have to hit that timeline. We have to hit the the 8pm thing and just see what happens at the end of this. So sorry, anthony, but if anybody needs to peel off, you can. Is there anything else we want to add about OpenAI before we move on to anything else?
0:48:35 - Alex Lindsay
You know, I one thing that was pointed out during the commercial break Laura Thompson, who's our question manager I do a show every morning and one of the things we get questions from all over the world and we have to figure out how to pronounce some of the names and she said oh, make sure to tell them that we use that every single day. We use chat GPT. We say how do you pronounce this person's name? Huh, it will break it down into a long like. There's like a page of it's this like this and this like this and this like this, and this is how you put this all together and does the point that we, that's a.
But those are the kind of things that chat GPT, especially when it comes to language. We do some Q and A, we do some interview shows and we don't use the. I'm constantly running it kind of in parallel to the questions, where we do interviews, and I asked chat, you would give me 10 thoughtful questions for this person, like it's usually a public person, and it'll give me the questions and there's like eight of them that are worthless. There's like two of them that are like I should, I should.
0:49:28 - Devindra Hardawar
That is actually. That's a good pro tip, because often, as I'm rushing to an interview, I'm like on my phone scrambling ideas.
0:49:36 - Alex Lindsay
And again, we don't use those. I don't use them because I don't feel like we're using them. But the but what we do do is when I'm brainstorming how to interview someone, I will say this is especially if it's a public person. I'll say, give me 30 questions for this person and I'll look through them. And it'll bring things up like in your book, like literally, say, in your book, this, this and this, you talk about this, what is it like? And I may go, oh, that's a good idea. And then I think about something related to that and again, it's not one for one connection to it, but it is something that is super useful for brainstorming. And I don't even I went from not knowing that you never using chat to you to feeling like it's like another arm. You know that. That.
0:50:16 - Devindra Hardawar
I feel like the the key term is co-pilot Right. Like. I feel like that was a great word that Microsoft used, because it's not about it's not like how Elon Musk termed the self-driving right it is. It is not self-driving, it is not your thing taking full control, it is you being in the pilot seat, you have this little helper right next to you and you could tap them whenever you need some advice or something. So I think that framing works.
0:50:37 - Alex Lindsay
Alex, I'm glad to hear like you're you know, I know a lot of coders that use it every single day and they do it two different things. One is to try to figure out something. I how do you, how would you program this? And it'll program it, and they go well. I don't agree with that, but I see where you're going and that makes that it would bring up parts of the code that they hadn't thought of. But the other thing they do is they use to analyze their code all the time. Show me how this could be more efficient. Show me you know, analyze this code for this and it will break it down in incredible detail.
0:51:05 - Devindra Hardawar
That makes sense Like yeah, the model should understand computer language, I guess a little more than than like broader intellectual things.
0:51:13 - Alex Lindsay
What is the weight of something or what is the size of something. I don't ever ask it for to give me hard numbers, because it rarely gets that correct. And that's what. When you see everyone give you examples of what AI doesn't do well, it's usually they're asking for specific values and it doesn't do well. Learning language is something it does really well, like you know what, like in in language and stuff that it, that it has and it also makes. In case you're wondering if you ever want to make fortune cookies that are Star Trek related, amazing, amazing, you can make Klingon cookies, you can make Romulan cookies, you can Wait, wait, wait.
0:51:46 - Paris Martineau
Star Trek related fortune cookies.
0:51:48 - Alex Lindsay
Oh, you should ask. You got to ask, Chap, give me 10 fortune cookies as a Romulan and it will give you 10 fortune cookies as a, but then go and do it as a Klingon and it'll be different than the.
0:52:00 - Anthony Ha
Romulan, did you actually make these cookies and distribute them?
0:52:03 - Alex Lindsay
I just read them off. I didn't make them, but I but I, I feel like baking is a science.
0:52:07 - Paris Martineau
Chapgbt can't be getting those right right.
0:52:09 - Alex Lindsay
No, it didn't get the cookies. It made the. It made the same. The fortune cookie sayings It'll do it all. Oh, okay, that makes more sense.
0:52:17 - Paris Martineau
No, no, no, that's still pretty.
0:52:18 - Alex Lindsay
So yeah, didn't give me this, it's still fun. I did get it to make me an awesoup that I still eat about once a month, I feel like soup is a good, a good metaphor for the whole like I don't know current state of AI.
0:52:31 - Devindra Hardawar
I guess like just a lot of blending of its things coming together. Sometimes it tastes good, I don't know. Yeah.
0:52:37 - Anthony Ha
I think one other thing about the open aid discussion is that, as we've read about these sort of different camps within the company, I think that one of my frustrations is it feels like the the discussion of AI and Silicon Valley so often just sort of boils down into these sort of two very extreme views of this is the future of everything, or it's the doom of humanity because it's Skynet, and it feels like there are so many more exciting opportunities and things to be afraid of than either of those two things. But it feels like that's kind of what the conversation seems to boil down to so often, which I find really frustrating.
0:53:10 - Devindra Hardawar
The middle way, like I didn't want to bring up this example too much because I don't want to be an AI doomsayer, but I've also I've read a lot of Michio Kaku. I've read a lot of, like you know, the people talking about this stuff and the singularity since the nineties, right, and that's kind of what it is Like. The whole rise of AGI is that dream of creating something that is smarter than us, you know, and then what do we do? We can't control it. Oh, no, be afraid. This whole firing thing feels like, if you know, in the Terminator movie, if somebody went back in time to stop Freeman Dyson, like there you go. Okay, that actually is a good point.
0:53:42 - Paris Martineau
We haven't considered that this is a Terminator situation and that the members of the board are actually being influenced by someone from the future. I think that's worth putting out there.
0:53:51 - Devindra Hardawar
0:53:53 - Anthony Ha
And everyone else is sort of the dumb present, people who like if only we knew, and the problem is that it's leading to We'll never know, because now the future has been changed.
0:54:02 - Alex Lindsay
You know, like they. They were like. All we have to do is get Altman out of there and then it'll change everything for the future and we'll all survive another century until it takes over.
0:54:09 - Devindra Hardawar
I mean, we were talking about other ways you could do it, and I think there are other ways you could. You could develop this stuff while still being cautious about and I feel like that was the. That was like the tact Google was taking for a long time. It was like, yeah, we, we know they've been working on generative models and they've been working on AI for a decade. They haven't really shown much of it and they almost seemed like afraid of what would happen if they let this stuff out, which is why Bard basically came out half cooked, because they were not ready to even do that. They did that because because of Bing chat, you know. So I feel like that is a way, and sometimes I don't know.
0:54:42 - Alex Lindsay
I think we lost that way when, when it got to be, when there's so many different companies with so much of the same technology that have it and a lot of its open sourced and a lot of it has been published and a lot of this stuff. I think the problem is now the cat is fully out of the bag, and I think that it's. I think it'll be very, very difficult to put it back in, and so I think that that it is. We're now just going to. We have to think about, as people you know how we dance with this, because there is no stopping at this point. You know it's inevitable and so it's just whatever is happening. So we have to figure, and I think that it does.
I I really think that AI is going to really empower people who are thinkers, and it does, but it puts a huge risk.
I'm kind of in that middle path of there's a huge risk for about 30% of the population that you know that that really are going to have a hard time keeping up with doing something better than the computer does.
People who are creative and kind of building up new ideas and so on and so forth, get an enormous, you know heads, you know, like so someone who's thinking of stories but can't draw, or suddenly you know, within the next two or three years we'll just be able to sit there and talk and get you know images back and forth. I do that with. I'd actually do that with chat GPT. Now I'm like give me this image and then I'll say, but take that person out, but then put this back in and then do this, and then I get an image that I wanted. So so the and so the. I couldn't draw that image, and even if I could, it would have taken me to model and animate that or model and the image that I created in chat GPT in 15 minutes would take me probably a week. And that's if I knew exactly what I wanted.
Sure, I mean, you could have paid an illustrator to do that too, but that would also take time and it's still taking a week and it would have cost me to do the image that I was talking about, would have cost me probably, you know, three to $5,000 and a week of time to get done something I got done in 15 minutes.
0:56:31 - Devindra Hardawar
That is. That's the worry, though, like I've definitely been hearing from a lot of creators, musicians and artists who are looking at this and looking at, like you know, a lot of the creative process, the things that do take a week just get kind of dumbed down and simplified and, oh, you do it, in a couple of seconds later you get a full, beautiful image which is based on, you know, stuff that already exists. Like I do wonder about creator fairness there. I think there's still a lot of stuff we have to iron out, which is why we had a we just had a major, you know, writer strike and the actor strike, and it's everything we're still dealing with. Like, alex, you have a sense. Like you've, you know the Hollywood machine, you know. Like what do you? How do you think? Like Hollywood is looking at AI? At this point? We're still waiting for the SAG stuff, right?
0:57:14 - Alex Lindsay
Well, I mean, I think that the I mean the. The issue is that the. Obviously the producers want to take a full advantage of this and the writers, to some degree, want to take advantage of it too. They want to be able to say how would you say this if they're doing, let's say, a military style thing? How would you say this as a special forces operator? And then it gives them the text back and that's going to make their thing better than it was before. So the writers don't want to give up AI. They just don't want the producers to use it to replace them. You know and so and so what they're. And right now, if you have a, you have chat, you you write your script. It's a solid you know. Fifth, you know C level, b level script it's kind of thing on a Saturday afternoon, or maybe half of the Netflix stuff that's out there. It probably be competitive with it. You know to to of what it writes. If you say you know, I want this and everything else, the. But they know that it'll get better and as it keeps training, it's going to keep on getting much better at what it does, and that's what they're concerned about with, I mean with the actors. I mean, obviously the actors are concerned about their digital likeness and being able to replace them, and we're already seeing a lot of that. We're already replacing a lot of the.
You know, I mean I was replacing actors, not not really, but when I was working. I worked on Star Wars episode one, and I was I was animating thousands of droids, droids, so. So I wasn't animating them one by one, I was building a cloud simulation system or a, or a replication system, and then I had to set up a bunch of rules about why, you know, don't run into each other. If you see one that's on the other side, shoot at it. You build a bunch of rules of what, what it needs to do, when it, when it, when it does those things. This has gotten a lot more in depth and so so the and if you look at like what, what a bill called, there's a program back in the early Lord of the Rings called mass, which is all designed to build, build those things out, and that stuff is getting much better. So a lot of the extras that a lot of the actor stuff was concerned about, you have a bunch of extras.
If I scan you, if I take a bunch of, and we have these trucks that you can go into that have 150 cameras and you walk in and you put your hands in a certain way and it just snaps the photo and it has a model and we have you do it's built. It was originally built for like 2K games to do yeah, small players, right, but it'll. It'll capture someone. You get a couple of different motions and a couple of different facial expressions and we can do almost anything with you at a distance, and so that's the concern they have. I'm going to pay you for a day rate, let's say 150 bucks for the day to walk around in the background, but I captured you. I never have to pay you again. You know, like so, and the problem is that's the in. That's how a lot of actors get into the business.
So if you take that on ramp out, it makes it harder and harder for people to get started, you know, and so that's where the actors are really fighting. You know that's what they were really fighting for, was trying in the AI world. There's a lot of other things they were fighting for, but that's what they were really trying to stop is this ability to cut, not the high end actors that can always negotiate and put in their contract that says you can't use my likeness without paying me. They can all put that in there. In fact, you know, some of these actors have been getting scanned for the last 20, 25 years so they can license their likeness back to the producers when you want to show them, when they were 25 and now they're 65. They want to. They've been capturing themselves as a service for you know some of them for 20 or 30 years now and so so.
But it's the, it's the middle line actors and the low end actors that are all, or the, you know, the kind of starting actors that are all trying to make sure that they still have a job. It will never be the speaking roles. I mean maybe someday, but it probably won't be the speaking roles because we're having enough trouble with visual effects as it is. If you look at Marvel show, marvel movies and lots of special effects movies, the lack of physics, the lack of detail is stuff that is people are getting tired of as it is. So they have their own challenges with computer graphics and that's you know. So they're not going to want necessarily the actors to be that person. But there's a lot of stuff, people that are out of focus, behind them, that could be replaced pretty quickly and are already being replaced, and it's and so that's what the actors are trying to figure out. They didn't. I don't think they got as much as they wanted, but they got something.
1:01:10 - Devindra Hardawar
They got something I want to shout out the. I reference this movie a lot, but the Ari Fallman movie, the Congress, which I think is like an undersung little sci-fi anything about actors basically giving up their likenesses and digitally selling them. Basically, it's stars Robin Wright who goes through this process, but also, once you do that, you can never act again. So it's sort of like it is kind of it's a black mirror version of that concept and it inevitably leads to like some sort of dystopia as well. But I think the movie is really smart about it, which is it's just funny to see like us following a similar path to things we've seen there. I believe that was a. That was a Stanislaus Lem story too. That was originally based on so beautiful movie we're checking out right now. If you're thinking about all this stuff, yeah, paris Anthony, any thoughts about like where AI is taking us at this point?
1:02:02 - Anthony Ha
I think for me, one of the things that I'm more worried about than, like, runaway technology though certainly that's a possibility is the feeling and I think this speaks to also. You know, why the Hollywood strikes were so emotional is because it's also this suspicion that the people in charge are excited about the prospect of cutting humans as much out of the process as possible.
And certainly that's something I saw, you know, having spent a couple of years in the VC industry is that there are people who just are sort of salivating at the possibility of like boy, won't it be great when we don't have to deal with the Paschal talent? And so I think there's also just an emotional component of kind of like screw you, we're so excited to replace us with robots.
1:02:42 - Devindra Hardawar
Mm, hmm, mm, hmm. Paris, like I don't know, like, how are you feeling about, like where AI is taking us in terms of art and media?
1:02:50 - Paris Martineau
I think it's complicated. I mean, I think right now we're at a stage where we're talking about all of these consequences. Yeah, they're still a bit off, you know. They're far off, at least in compare in when we're talking about immediate consequences. It doesn't seem like actors are fully being replaced by AI in any scalable way, and I think that the current quality of large language models isn't up to snuff at the point where it could fully replace writers. I think that actually, I think that my answer to that question is I'm feeling positive about it, but not in the way that you think, just because I think the recent strikes we've seen from the Writers Guild and SAG-AFTRA it's really been heartening to me to see people come together en masse to advocate for specific labor issues, and I think that AI has been an instigating factor in that. In a way, that has been quite interesting.
1:03:47 - Devindra Hardawar
This year has been a wake up call in many ways. Also, this is not entirely a new thing. I remember during production of the Matrix sequels that there were rumors that you know Jeth Lee was going to play a role in one of those and, famously, like I think he said at one point, like he refused to play I think it was Serif in the second and third movies, but he refused to play that role because they wanted to copy him, they wanted to capture his moves and his likeness probably to put into the game, because, like there was a great like trans media thing happening around the Matrix at that point and I totally respect that. I feel like he totally saw ultimately what could have happened, would have liked to see him in that movie. But also respect for, like, keeping your craft, you know, and keeping it your own, not letting it be resold in ways you don't, you can't control. I think like that's ultimately it right.
1:04:34 - Alex Lindsay
Yeah, I think that they wanted to. I think I think he thought that they wanted to do one thing with it and they were really just trying to do visual effects with it. I mean, they needed to capture to do. If you look at the scenes that Serif was in, there was a lot of need for, you know, a digital version of him, which is only kind of worked back. Then, you know, if you look at the Neo shot the Neo, they were like it's okay, it's okay, you know they were telling the story, I guess.
But I think that that is. I think that's what his concern was and I think he thought that they might do something else with it. But I think that that I think what was really driving, what was driving there, was the visual effects. And again, I think that some ways we're going back to more organic visual effects to try to find a way to have it feel more real. And I think that I do think that one thing that we're going to start to see is kind of like American made. There's going to be, I think, when we look at social media, when we look at other things, there's going to be an imprint of this. Is a human like this is human made, this is, you know, certified human, you know stuff just like being organic. I guess you could call it organic in some ways?
1:05:38 - Devindra Hardawar
Yeah, it's organic.
1:05:39 - Alex Lindsay
It's organic media, and I think that people promising that you know, youtube is talking about doing that, where they require you to declare any AI that might be used inside of your product. So it's kind of the same thing of like any GMOs or any kind of roundup. You have to, you know, to tell us that you're putting it in there and so. So I think that that's going to be a really interesting process where and I think that that's what Elon Musk, in a kind of a hamfisted way, is trying to do with Twitter, which is that I'm going to, you know, try to separate people from the potentially, you know what might be the bots, and it's not. I don't think he's, I don't think his execution is great, but I kind of see where he's going.
1:06:15 - Devindra Hardawar
I mean, I almost feel like somebody somebody had mentioned this at one point, but his mistake was he thought the bots were fake people were fake commentary and he thought, like the real people were actually bots, like he fundamentally misunderstood what people were saying on Twitter.
1:06:31 - Alex Lindsay
Unfortunately, Bots are a huge problem. I mean like they're a bigger problem now.
1:06:37 - Devindra Hardawar
They're a bigger problem, like after like.
1:06:39 - Alex Lindsay
Musk's takeover. I mean, I mean, in social media, the real danger are the bots, not because of what they say, but because of what they like. So the acceleration of posts that are done by real people, by, you know, bots and other and other automated systems, is really one of the most dangerous parts of social media right now. It's not that someone is generating, a bot is generating stuff, it's that they're liking and re, re and retweeting or whatever they call it now reposting in all of these platforms. And I've seen ones where I said something that seemed to be random, like it was not like a particularly whatever and for whatever reason, the boss decided that this was a useful thing for whatever they were trying to tell. And I suddenly I mean I was you know, I get 20,000 impressions a day or whatever. 10,000 impressions a day, 5,000, you know, like somewhere in those ranges, and suddenly I was getting 200,000 impressions a day for a month. You know, like it was just, like it was just on.
1:07:36 - Devindra Hardawar
You know it was just we don't know fully what's behind it.
1:07:38 - Alex Lindsay
I had no idea, like I couldn't even figure out what was doing that. I was just like it was like magic, you know and and. But whatever it was it was, you know it was. You know I don't even know what I mean. I know what it was a tweet about. You know my general dislike of some government agency telling a larger story of something. I was just frustrated and it was probably like the DMV. I was mad and I said something. I can't even remember what it was. It was years ago but I was amazed and that's when I really understood how dangerous bots were.
1:08:06 - Devindra Hardawar
It wasn't what they were posting, it was what they're accelerating back to what we were talking about before, just a little bit. I do want to say like I think the Mission Impossible movies worth pointing out, like now mostly sold with like Tom Cruise laying, like he is doing a lot of this stuff. You know, that is why a lot of people are going to see them and I'm a big fan of that series, even even number two, and you know, I think there is something to it. It is very strange to go from seeing Marvel movies where people aren't actually even wearing costumes, right, they're just wearing suits that can be digitally re-altered for whatever, so they're not wearing clothes or not wearing superhero outfits. What is actually going on? I kind of felt that a lot in Ant-Man Quantamania, where the entire movie felt artificially generated. Is it like?
yeah it felt like a game. There's also just no life to it. So I feel like that was the thing for me, whereas even you know even a so so Mission Impossible movie like the last one I didn't think it was because the other Macquarie's, but there were still really cool practical effects in there that I really appreciated. And also combining digital and real things Like there's there's Tom Cruise hanging from like a train car, that's like falling off a cliff right, it is still him hanging from like a real location, so you kind of get the sense of those things are happening. But yeah, organic things, organic media, I feel like could be the next big thing. I want to talk about something that also happened this week that I thought was going to be the main story. Honestly, it was a thing I thought never was going to happen and it's a very geeky thing, but I think our audience will appreciate it. And that was the news when Apple announced out of nowhere that it's supporting RCS.
And that is specifically yay, apple supports acronym. Specifically, that means that it's going to be interoperable. I message is going to be interoperable with Android phones to deliver RCS features, like what? Higher quality Group chats yeah, group chats are well higher quality images, videos, locations, sharing things like that. It's not going to be like dinky SMS to iPhones. I believe the reporting is that those things coming from Android people will still be green bubbles because that's how Apple rules. But you know, I thought this was kind of fun and it's also fun because I think just the day before or recently, the company Nothing, the phone company Nothing, which is the worst name in the world, kind of made a splash where they were saying like, oh yeah, yeah, we're going to bring iMessage to Android phones. We have this whole thing. They were working together with Sunbird, which is a project that has basically hacked away to enable you to post iMessage messages from Android phones, and the way it does that is basically they're running like a server farm of Mac minis that these messages get rerouted to.
1:10:49 - Alex Lindsay
So that's fun. No security issues there at all. No security issues there.
1:10:53 - Paris Martineau
No problems, don't look too closely, don't look too closely.
1:10:56 - Alex Lindsay
Don't look too closely. You're only hacking messages through somebody else's computers, and sure we fine.
1:10:59 - Devindra Hardawar
It'll be fine. Something announced this thing earlier this week and I think a lot of us were looking at this and being like, oh, I remember. I remember when the Palm Pre thought it could use iTunes to sync music and that did not work out so well. But also, I've been in this game for too long. I think that's that's what I learned is I remember these things? Apple will kill this stuff. Not too long after that I think it was after the RCS news we saw that Nothing was pulling its iMessage compatible chats app and specifically the iMessage stuff to the Nothing phones. It was going to go to the Nothing 2 phone, which Nothing says has sold to six figures of people across North America and parts of Europe, so not many people. This was not a very scalable solution but, yeah, nothing. They posted a message saying we've removed the Nothing chats data from the Play Store and will be laying the launch until further notice to work with Sunberg to fix several bugs. We apologize for the delay and we'll do right by their users, thank you.
Specifically, security bugs it is security bugs Like let me see here at 9 to 5, google pointing out that Nothing chats doesn't have NTAN encryption. They found that the attachments sent by other users could easily be accessed in plain text. Baby the findings I'm reading from our engadgered report of this right now. The findings added support to Concerned Voice by others that Sunberg uses HTTP instead of HTTPS. What are we even doing? I?
1:12:26 - Paris Martineau
don't it's Might as well just be writing our text messages on a stone tablet and passing them around at this point?
1:12:32 - Devindra Hardawar
I mean basically.
1:12:33 - Alex Lindsay
So I think that you know there's been a lot of back and forth with the EU and Apple related to this and the fact that Apple doesn't really think it and it's complicated to say that Apple is a gatekeeper with iMessage, because iMessage is such a small part of the European market and so you know it's like it's just so few people use. There are people who use it, and I said on another show that nobody uses it because I don't know anybody in Europe that uses iMessage. They're all on WhatsApp, you know, and so they're, you know, and so it seems like a really small percentage of the users to call it that, and so this pressure was coming down the pike. I think that what Apple has been exceptional at is delaying action, and so what they do is they do enough, and they do enough as they talk to the regulators, to get people to just stop doing things, and so they promise things how long it takes and how it's implemented. You know, the devil is in the details, and Apple is really good at these details. Like, for instance, people said well, apple finally gave up and gave USBC to the iPhone. Apple didn't give up.
Apple delayed the release of USBC for years as they slowly worked it into. You know, they were already building Before the EU even got into this. They were already building USBC devices. They were turning everything over to USBC. They were computer. So hard, guys, it's so hard to get that connected. Oh no, it just it takes. It took them time, and so what they did is they just kept on getting them to delay it until they were good and ready. And then the iPhone dropped into a USBC model, but it went on Apple's timeline, not on the EU's timeline. Oh, absolutely. And in RCS we don't know A, we don't know how. You know, we don't know how long it will take. You know, my guess is RCS.
1:14:12 - Devindra Hardawar
They said later next year.
1:14:14 - Alex Lindsay
So you know, probably somewhere near December 20th, you know, like you know, because it'll, it'll hold, it'll hold, put everybody in a hold cycle that while Apple's doing something, and then it comes out and they're going hey, we're just going to test the model, we're not going to. You know, we won't turn everything on immediately.
You know like we're going to do it piece by piece and so, so that starts to slow down that process and it could be another, you know, year and a half or two years before it's fully implemented. I mean, and what's interesting again is that Europe is not where it's the most affected. It's really in the United States. I have two teen teenagers. You know, 87%, I think the last thing was 87% of teenagers are on iPhones and I asked my, my, my kids. I was like so is the green bubble a big deal? They're like oh, it's no joke, Nobody wants to have a green bubble in it, but it seems that it's past. They're not complaining about interoperability, they just don't want the green bubble. So it's the cache, yeah.
1:15:07 - Paris Martineau
Wait, 7% of teenagers have an iPhone specifically. That's incredible.
1:15:13 - Alex Lindsay
Oh, it's an incredible number. It's a very frightening number. It worries everyone. However, because they're in that ecosystem, they're going to stay in that ecosystem. It's going to be in that ecosystem.
1:15:22 - Devindra Hardawar
This is what Apple always wanted. Yeah, yeah, google's totally freaked out. But I remember in the nineties too, where it was like, um yeah, mac users were always like kind of like a small portion of the pie and always like the designers and the cool kids and the artists, and by the time I was supporting Macs and PCs at like 2001,. I was in college. At the point I was like, okay, I see the clear delineation here Apple will never reach Main Street. Like they are just too cordoned off, like they can't do it with the Mac, arguably they will never do it with the Mac because the Mac is still a weird little thing which I still like using quite a bit, but PCs will always win. And then, like iPhone was like the perfect thing. Just like, raise people on the iPhone, right, and then they'll never leave.
1:16:03 - Alex Lindsay
Yeah, and the problem is that they have. You know, I mean, the most kids that I know, my kids included, hate the Chromebooks like with a passion, and it's not just because they have to do their schoolwork on them. They're just bad machines, you know, and so they're extremely underpowered. They can't connect all the things they want to it, they can't get it to do what they, you know, so it's completely useless other than to do their homework on, and it's barely useful for that, and so you know. So the thing is is that so they they're building this dislike for Google inside of school and there, but they're, and so part of this is that dislike of the Chromebooks that were supposed to standardize people on using Google. Google stuff is not having that effect, and it's because it's so. I mean, as a parent, it's so frustrating to watch like the Google so bad at this?
1:16:50 - Devindra Hardawar
Like this is the Google philosophy, by the way of like failing at user experience. Right, Like I feel like that's often it.
1:16:56 - Alex Lindsay
And so the kids have this great experience, like my kids have iPads and they have other things at home and they have, you know, and they'll do their entire presentations on iPads and then they'll, they'll, they'll do the whole thing on keynote and then they'll just push it out as images and then load it into slides, because that's what they're required to do, and then they, you know, and then they hand them in, you know. And so the thing is, is that they and but the this, the green bubble? I think that the question really is is will it matter by the time RCS happens If the green bubble stays there? The stigma for kids, and again, I don't think Apple's looking at the rest of it, and we have to understand that. You know, now kids are moving more and more in the United States, not in the rest of the world. Can we talk to the rest of the world?
There are a lot of them are on Android, a lot of them are in the United States is a pretty big market and for Apple and the biggest, you know, and the issue is that that the kids are, are you know that green, that it's a, it's a more of a herd problem than a than an actual functional problem, and I don't think that Apple will do things like I think that there'll be some interoperability, but I don't think they're going to move memojis over. I don't think they're going to move a lot of the things that you know those aren't going to work over on Android and so those all those little tie ins that we think as adults are crazy, the memojis and all these other things that they're adding to iMessages are going to keep kids like Well, I still can't send that to you over RCS, I'm not going to, you know, like I think the other one thing that'll be a big maker break is if you can do like the double exclamation point react or like you can't heart react.
Yeah, you're not going to send. Yeah, no, it's not going to work, then it's going to be the same stigma.
And I think that Apple is going to accelerate over the next year and a half as they make RCS available. They're going to accelerate tons and tons of features that they're building into iMessage that that aren't going to be available to RCS, and so they're going to keep that, that division, there. You know, and as you know, it's not. It's still going to feel like you're going to go into RCS and it's still going to feel like it's getting dumbed down.
1:18:44 - Devindra Hardawar
It's a listen. All I need is bare minimum functionality. Alex, like I'm so tired of getting videos from my family, I hit play. I'm so excited to see what my nephew is doing. It's in like 240p, it's in like are you an Android guy?
1:18:58 - Paris Martineau
No, I'm a person.
1:19:00 - Devindra Hardawar
Oh, the Android people sending videos to me. It ends up looking like garbage because it comes from a mess.
1:19:05 - Paris Martineau
You can't be friends with the Android people. You can't be friends with them, but they're my family.
1:19:08 - Devindra Hardawar
I can't dub them, unfortunately.
1:19:10 - Paris Martineau
Sorry, wait, what's, what's our, what's our split here? We got the Android guys. We have any Chromebook users on the panel?
1:19:16 - Devindra Hardawar
1:19:17 - Paris Martineau
Or is this an oops all max situation? It's a biased panel.
1:19:21 - Devindra Hardawar
I'm a Windows, I'm a Windows guy mainly, but I have learned to support Max because I got it and those are also what are what my job gives me. But you know, as an IT guy I had to learn to live in both worlds Certainly. And then Chromebooks started happening and I I think the idea of a cheap, super cheap computer that you could give out to kids is a great one. Unfortunately, google is Google right, and almost at every level of experience, of customer experience, they fail as a company. So anyway, I get a lot of hate for this over at the engadget podcast. So my email is divindredengadgetcom. You can just send me the hate right there. Sorry, Wait.
1:19:57 - Paris Martineau
so you're rocking an iPhone and a PC. Yeah sure, why not? Why would you do this to yourself? Why not choose one of the other?
1:20:05 - Devindra Hardawar
No, no, no, no, no, no, no. You can. You could totally live in actually Microsoft's whole push to be like oh well, we lost some mobile. But here's, here are all our apps on iPhone, right, and here's our apps contiguously. The only thing I don't have is I message like on my desktop that's gonna be solved, I'm gonna. I can live without that fully.
1:20:23 - Alex Lindsay
I don't know, I just shot. I just shot a 4k, 30 Apple Pro res HQ video of my daughter's first concert gig. She's a drummer for a band, Amazing and I shot it. And I was like I can't believe I just generated a 38 gig file, seven minutes, you know, on my phone, you know. Then there was the challenge of okay, well, how do I get it off the phone? So this though, but it's a, you know, like I think that Apple is, you know, I mean, I have two PCs on my desk right now. I have two PCs and seven Macs. So so the so.
1:20:58 - Paris Martineau
I'm sorry, do you say seven Macs on your, your total of nine computers on your desk right now?
1:21:04 - Alex Lindsay
Yeah, yeah, yeah, I have a lot of screens as well, so there are a lot of things are feeding data.
1:21:09 - Paris Martineau
How many screens do you have in comparison to nine computers?
1:21:13 - Alex Lindsay
Two, three, four, eight, eight screens. But so I have nine computers and the problem is a lot of the computers have one one. One computers is sucking up for those screens and other other computers. So I have to turn. I have a an eight by eight HDMI matrix so I can reset it for different things. So if. I'm speaking or doing a live show, the screens all become something different based on what I'm doing.
1:21:36 - Devindra Hardawar
So this is this is my dream. I want more monitors. Right now, I'm still testing. I'm testing a 49 inch monitor, gaming monitor that I reviewed quite a lot.
1:21:44 - Alex Lindsay
They're all. They're all 24 inch, they're all 1080p because they all into a, my, my, I've a, you know, a 10 mini extreme and so I, because it's 1080p, all my monitor 1080p, because all the computers have to be 1080p, so I have lots of 1080p monitors.
1:21:57 - Devindra Hardawar
I mean, I feel like both the blessing occurs in Alex. I don't know like you have monitors, but they're all on swings, so they all.
1:22:05 - Alex Lindsay
I just grab onto them and move them where I need them to be. You know so I. I get used to that. And the idea of one big monitor. I have a big. I got a 43 inch water that I was going to put in there. I can't figure out where to put it.
1:22:14 - Paris Martineau
That's a TV at that point.
1:22:15 - Alex Lindsay
It's a TV.
1:22:16 - Paris Martineau
Actually it's a TV, I mean if you have eight movable monitors, you can make yourself like a computer cocoon at some point, or you're just you can't see anything, you're just plugged in.
1:22:27 - Alex Lindsay
I'm cutting back. When I first started, when I first built this, it was 16 monitors.
1:22:31 - Paris Martineau
Oh my God, what do you put on 16 monitors?
1:22:34 - Alex Lindsay
So so I have a lot of times when I'm doing. I got into it because I was building live shows. I mean, I'm sorry, I have classrooms. I got a school built, a media school in Rwanda, so we have a media school in Rwanda and I did, but I had to teach classes there from home, which is in San Francisco, and so I had to build a classroom rig so that I could teach, and so so we started adding things and what you you're like, oh, I really need the live feedback from them and I really need to see what's happening on this app and I really need to see this. A countdown clock and I really before you, and not all the screens are the same size. I've got a couple little ones up here that are like the time of day and the countdown clock and that's what the PCs do Time of day Because they're really cheap. They're like these little $250 PCs.
1:23:16 - Paris Martineau
Have you heard of this thing called a clock?
1:23:18 - Alex Lindsay
It's kind of like a computer but it's you need the big clock, it's just on a screen and I can.
1:23:24 - Paris Martineau
So it's a clock. It's just part of my eight HDMI cords set up.
1:23:29 - Alex Lindsay
It looks so much nicer and it constantly checks atomic time and so it so the anyway. So I have, and then we do a show every morning. So I have to. I've got different chats coming in and I have instruction sets and I have again the things that I'm my run of show and things like that. So there's just a lot of things that I like to have as a heads up display and, if you bear it, if you do this for 10 years, you end up with one, and then I want. The reason I have so many computers is when I do presentations, my keynote presentations, I have a presentation. I have a. You know, I think I used it earlier. I have a little illustrating app that I developed.
1:24:04 - Devindra Hardawar
I love that. I want to be able to draw on my video chat, but you know what? I want to hear more about our steps, actually. But let's, let's check it out Leo at the F1 Grand Prix, because I think he has some words from a sponsor.
1:24:16 - Leo Laporte
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I mean you could. You could, as belt suspenders, you couldn't do a better job of making sure your privacy is protected. When, when your phone carrier, when your ISP anybody tracks you, that is a gross invasion of privacy. You can either let them keep cashing in on you or visit ExpressVPNcom slash twit and get that same VPN I use and recommend. Take back your online privacy today. Use our link to get three extra months free with a one year package. Expresvpncom slash twit. Expressvpncom slash twit. I use it. I recommend it. Give it a try. Thank you, expressvpn. Now back to the Vindra.
1:27:32 - Devindra Hardawar
Thanks so much, leo. And now I really want to know I'm curious that we've been diving to Alex's whole setup here Harrison, anthony, what are your setups like? Because I know you're both like New Yorkers living in cramped apartments? What's what? Can you survive? What can you use at this point?
1:27:46 - Paris Martineau
Yeah, I've got like a. I'm in a one bedroom apartment. I've got a kind of cubby setup. That's my office here. I just have one monitor. My computer is. My laptop is next to me plugged in, which is a second screen. Honestly, the only crazy thing about my setup is I. I am obsessed with the feeling of typing on a laptop, a MacBook specifically, which I know ergonomically is terrible for me. I shouldn't like it. I shouldn't like it. It's good, but it's not.
I should have one of those weird things where your hands look like they're I don't know on like a roller ball or something. But so I've gotten a Apple keyboard, an Apple trackpad, and I ordered this like custom acrylic case. I don't know if my thing will hold like it is a MacBook bottom, but it is just sitting on my desk it feels like that is a thing designed for psychopaths.
1:28:41 - Devindra Hardawar
How did you find that?
1:28:42 - Paris Martineau
I got it on Etsy from some Chinese supplier that I think like custom ported or something, I don't know. It fits perfectly. I love it. I can carry it around the house if I want to. I don't keep it exactly on my desk perched with my hands on it at all times.
1:28:58 - Devindra Hardawar
This is amazing.
1:28:59 - Paris Martineau
I know that's how I live my life.
1:29:02 - Devindra Hardawar
I know I can trust you, paris, because you went for the trackpad and not the magic mouse. So like, literally, track has the only way to go.
1:29:07 - Paris Martineau
So the thing is a mouse just feels wrong to me at this point. I live a trackpad life and I had to get this because, using it without the case, sometimes your hands brush up against the trackpad and I'm like I can't have that. I need to have maximum speed.
1:29:22 - Devindra Hardawar
Also the Apple mice are all I'm still still on.
1:29:25 - Alex Lindsay
I have a track ball because I don't have any more dust space, like so there's like I just can't move around, and it's connected to a bunch of other things, and so is. But now, paris, what are you using for your your accents in the back?
1:29:36 - Paris Martineau
It looks really nice, like it's a really great in the back I just have a neon light from hey, the kind of design company. It's just behind my like, in between my couch and my credenza. But, I've just got what camera using. Oh, I'm using a Canon EOS Rebel T7, which I just have hooked up as my webcam using Mac utility pro.
1:30:05 - Devindra Hardawar
The way to go.
1:30:06 - Paris Martineau
It really is. I started doing this during the pandemic because I was like, oh, I have such a crappy webcam. I'm always on zoom. What do some of the streamers I've like seen you. What if you had the best?
1:30:18 - Devindra Hardawar
camera? No, but I was like I.
1:30:20 - Paris Martineau
what if I? You know you? I was like I spent a couple hundred dollars, but then I realized all these are using DSLR cameras. I'm like I have a Canon camera that's been sitting in my drawer for years I haven't used. Why not just plug it in and it's perfect. It's great, yeah.
1:30:33 - Devindra Hardawar
Great Emily. I knew you're in Harlem, but you at least have a separate room to be.
1:30:36 - Anthony Ha
I do have a separate room, but I basically live like a caveman. I just have a MacBook Air, that's it. There's no special keyboard, no special monitor, and I have no like defense of this, except that it's like what I'm used to and what I like. Oh good, I think it actually has worked out well for me, in the sense that I think one of the very few good habits I have is I don't open too many tabs, and I feel like if I had like a giant monitor, I would just go crazy with like 10 million tabs and applications and everything, and I'm like better able to focus.
I used to have one of the Canon Rebel cameras too, because they sent it to us all of us for the one. We were doing virtual events for Tech Crunch. But then I left Tech Crunch and even though they were kind of like you can probably keep it and we're not going to complain, I was like no, I don't want to get a letter from you guys a year from now saying send me the camera back. So I just did it.
1:31:28 - Devindra Hardawar
Awesome, awesome. I love to hear how everybody's working. Like right now. I still have to send this monitor back by now, but I have.
Ultra wide monitors are the name of the game Like that is the way to live and I'm waiting for I know I'm sure Apple's probably going to think about that at some point like everyone's waiting for a bigger screen iMac and it seems like that's not going to happen at the current point but maybe a bigger, you know, cinema display that people would be into. I think that'd be cool. Ultra wide monitors they're the way to go, because otherwise it is like you're sitting in front of a big TV, right, and when I play games on this thing, I'm playing Alan Wake 2 and I'm in Alan Wake 2. It's like you're in it without wearing a VR headset and I see the appeal now. I used to poo poo 40 inch monitors. I was all about 34 inches, but I could see why going wide is good and also I get so many windows. It's super, super useful.
I want to bring us back to Apple and tech standards, by the way, because we saw the news that the Cheetu wireless standard is almost here. It's coming. It uses MagSafe Like. It literally uses the MagSafe connector because Apple basically shared the technology with them. It's coming soon. The iPhone 15 will be the first phones to fully support it. Cheetu is more efficient. The kid charged up to 15 watts much, much faster than the original one, and then having that magnetic hook, I think, is like a big selling point too. Do you guys have any thoughts on this? Because I do feel like this is the thing that will make a lot more people at least look at wireless charging, more so than just getting more cables.
1:33:04 - Alex Lindsay
I use wireless in my car so I have a peak design makes one where there's a case I took it off for a variety of reasons, but it's one of these cases and it's got wallets here. With this, I just snap onto my car and it charges and it's nice to have it be something that I don't have to think about. I just snap it onto my car and have my map, it's secure. Yeah.
And it does a really good job at doing that, but I don't use it anywhere else. Like I have to admit, I don't use any wireless. I have this host of cables coming out of this one, the two different chargers sitting here that are a mixture of USB-C and my watch charger. I mean, and I have to admit, part of it is that I hate the watch charger so much that I kind of it's terrible, it slides off a little bit, then I come back to it. I'm like it didn't charge at all, and so I get so frustrated with my watch charger I think it kind of bled off into. I'm not interested in doing wireless, except for where my car is. I haven't really used it anywhere else. I've got a couple of them and they just never. I can't figure out where to put them and that kind of thing.
1:34:10 - Devindra Hardawar
Is your car car play as well, or do you not have to worry about that?
1:34:14 - Alex Lindsay
I have a very old car. I have an old car. It's more like a truck, it's like a Dodge Caravan. I spend money on gear. I do not spend money on cars, because they don't?
1:34:21 - Devindra Hardawar
I mean now, cars are basically gear, at least the way I'm looking at something. You wear high-tech cars.
1:34:25 - Paris Martineau
I mean you've got to afford 8 to 16 monitors at any given time.
1:34:30 - Alex Lindsay
I'm constantly changing my camera and I get stuff. I get Mac Minis and I get things like that. I don't, my car doesn't what camera are you using, Alex?
1:34:40 - Paris Martineau
It looks fantastic I am currently using.
1:34:42 - Alex Lindsay
Thank you. I'm currently using the Sony EVZ-1, which is their full-frame kind of blogger camera, which is a little tricky because if I don't put the battery, there's a battery replacement with a little wire.
1:34:58 - Paris Martineau
Oh yeah, I got a dummy battery too.
1:35:00 - Alex Lindsay
You need a dummy battery and you need to swing the monitor open or overheat. So it took me a little while to. It'll just shut off all the time for me and so it'll overheat left on, and so it was a little bit of a tricky thing and I was like, should I keep this and everything else? But the full-frame is nice, it works out well and it's really small. I mean, it's about as small as you can make it. They have another one called that isn't out yet. It's just the size of enough to put the lens on, so it's leaving smaller than this one. Anyways, I use that. I was coming from an FX30, which is my that's now. I have a mobile kit when I go on. I have a Pelican Case 1510. That is my little. I'm on the road, pelican Case so that it's got all my lights and stuff like that because I still have to do my show. So the FX30 went into there. It's a Super 35 sensor. Yeah, wow.
1:35:58 - Devindra Hardawar
Alex, if you had a more modern car and you were worried about carplay, do you feel like even there maybe you would consider it, because with a lot of carplay you have to plug in if it's not wireless carplay, so then I don't know. I've had to juggle that too, because I did buy the wireless mount and I'm like I'm actually my office is, so I'm speaking somewhere.
1:36:16 - Alex Lindsay
And I said, hey, they said they was in Berkeley and they were like, can you come to speak? And I was like how about I just come from my office? Do you support Zoom? Because I have way more tools than you do about, that's true talk. And so I was like I don't really want to come, but at the same time my car is about as caveman as you can get, in the sense that I go through the headphone jack to get the music into the car and I have to pull. So I have to pull it because the connection is bad, so I pull it and then I wrap it around a couple of the dials and then take it.
This is making me sad to do it Like I have no Because I only drive. I mean, I barely drive a lot. That's fair, that's fair. But when my daughter and I go to the farmer's markets or whatever, we want to listen to music and there's always this weird thing we do with the cable and I keep on saying eventually I'm going to tear this radio out and put a new one in. That's all high tech and does car play and everything else, but I've gone around to it.
1:37:06 - Devindra Hardawar
Yet, anthony, any use for this new wireless tech, or are you using any right now?
1:37:10 - Anthony Ha
No, I mean that was actually going to be my question, for I still don't feel like I understand what the use case is for yeah, well, because it's been bad.
1:37:18 - Devindra Hardawar
Right, I think the experience for wireless charging has been legit bad and it feels like something being marketed to us because, yeah, you can't do as much, you can't hold your device and use it while you're wirelessly charging. That seems like a big problem. It has to be in just in the right spot, otherwise you lose the charge and then you pick it up an hour later and you're like oh, I'm screwed for the day, basically because this thing didn't fully charge. The G2 connection with the MagSafe stuff, I think, solves a lot of that. I've been using a Belkin MagSafe wireless connector in my bedroom. It has a little kickstand so it holds the phone up landscape mode so it can do the alarm mode thing.
I find that to be really interesting because, sure, I could just plug in a cable, but when I go, when I'm ready to go to bed, I don't even have to think about getting a cable into a port. I just slap this thing on and it's like a slap bracelet. Basically, it's a nice slap, a nice thunk. I could hold up the iPhone 15 Pro from the cable. It's secure enough to do that. I think that is useful. It's a fun thing to have on my nightstand, but now I want to do more wireless stuff everywhere and I can occasionally put my AirPod Pro case on it. I find that useful. I'm just pointing out this story because it is rare to see Apple working hand in hand to basically bring its tech to existing standards, probably because this helps them too. They're more wireless accessories, better for iPhone users in general.
1:38:48 - Paris Martineau
Is it good for the battery to have fast charging for like that over time, or is that more harmful for it?
1:38:56 - Devindra Hardawar
When you plug in, it's much, much faster when you plug in?
1:38:57 - Paris Martineau
does that impact the battery's life over time?
1:39:01 - Devindra Hardawar
Supposedly Our iPhones are smart enough. If you actually look at the battery app it'll tell you the charging schedule and basically they learn your schedule over time. They know if you get up at 8 AM it'll charge almost by 6 or 7 AM and then it'll continue closer to 8. Apple has put in tech to prevent it. But we're all worried about batteries. But battery is great. Over time you can't really prevent it. But I think the tech Apple's building into it is good. She too seems really useful. I'm glad we're making some progress there. Are you guys more interested in wireless? If you could get a magnet to safely connect to your phone or something?
1:39:40 - Anthony Ha
I feel like, just fundamentally, it's not like the thing about charging the battery. That bothers me is not the wires. I'm totally open to the possibility that, just in the way that I first used AirPods and before I was like what is the point of this, I don't need it, I don't think I'm going back to wired headphones. Maybe that'll happen with wireless charging. I started doubt it.
1:40:03 - Devindra Hardawar
I could see you getting a cute one, like a nice one for your desk. When you sit down at your computer to start working, you don't have to go fiddle and find the kid, you just like. Plop it there, do your thing, take it when you leave Nice to meet you. I just like plop it.
1:40:18 - Alex Lindsay
I charge it at night when I go to bed and I never have to charge it any other time. Now the one caveat is I don't have any Meta apps on it which just destroy your battery. The Meta apps are, and the reason I don't put them on is not because I have some paranoia or some anti-Meta whatever. I just like my battery to work. So by taking all the Meta apps off my computer, off my whatever they were doing, they just were chewing at my battery, and I learned early on that if I take the Meta apps off my battery, the other thing I do is I have it on. Do not disturb all the time, so it just doesn't do a lot, and so because of that, I'm usually at half or a quarter when I at the end of the day every day. So I charge it once at night. When I get up in the morning it's full and I almost never have to think about a charger again for the rest of the day.
1:41:05 - Paris Martineau
My phone has almost died. I think two or three times today it has been in the single digit percentages. I did plug it in last night. Maybe it came unplugged, maybe I've used it too much. I'm constantly in a state of running out of battery and I don't think wireless charging is going to probably change that.
1:41:22 - Devindra Hardawar
I mean, if you put something conveniently like where you sit often right. Yeah, I mean, that's the thing I just currently have chargers everywhere.
1:41:29 - Paris Martineau
But also I disagree. I think the name wireless charging is kind of a misnomer, because there are still wires.
1:41:35 - Devindra Hardawar
It depends on how you use it.
1:41:36 - Anthony Ha
It's not a crucial wire.
1:41:38 - Devindra Hardawar
The car thing is a good one because, like when it's just like a circular thing, sitting on a car event, you just put your phone on and that's good, that's kind of, that's kind of cool and it just kind of works. So on my nightstands, kind of the same thing. Anyway, I found 15. First, one of the first devices sport G2. This is a good thing. I would love to know what people are thinking about this. So yeah, have you guys seen the PlayStation Portal, sony's latest handheld system, which doesn't play any games?
1:42:09 - Paris Martineau
Is this the one that you have to be close to the PlayStation?
1:42:11 - Devindra Hardawar
This is the one that only streams from your PlayStation five. So to use the PlayStation Portal you must own a PlayStation five. You must be within an internet connection, ideally at home, but it will work remotely because Sony has created a remote play app. They've actually been doing that for a while. This thing costs $200. I reviewed it. I was not a fan. I'm just wondering have you ever you all heard of this thing Like what are your thoughts about a $200 device that can only stream games from your already very expensive console?
1:42:43 - Paris Martineau
Just get a Steam Deck. Just get a Steam Deck or a Nintendo Switch. It seems like Sony is trying to solve an issue without actually addressing the issue.
1:42:55 - Devindra Hardawar
We talk about the annoyances from some of these companies. Google annoys me with bad user experience. Apple annoys me with how stubborn it can be at times. Sony just is like hey, do you want speakers on your neck? No, sony, I don't. No, give me something I can use, give me standards we could use.
1:43:13 - Anthony Ha
But yeah, anthony, alex, I mean your review is the first time I'd even heard of it. I enjoyed your review. It was definitely convinced me not to get it. I should say the first PlayStation device I ever owned was the PSP and I loved it, PSP was great.
Not that it was a great. Yeah, it worked. I could play games anywhere. I should say I might also just like a very casual game or a witness the fact that I didn't even know this thing existed. But for a second I lit up. I was like, oh, maybe it's a cool new PlayStation portable device. I was like, oh no, I'm not going to get this, no thanks.
1:43:47 - Alex Lindsay
Yeah, I just don't play a lot of games.
1:43:51 - Paris Martineau
What's your games you're playing, Anthony?
1:43:54 - Anthony Ha
I. Mostly I play on like my iPad, so that's how casual I am. I'm just playing like Listen. You could play a lot on your iPad now.
1:44:01 - Devindra Hardawar
Yeah, you could do so much. You could, anthony. You could stream PlayStation stuff to your iPad PlayStation 4 and PlayStation 5 to your iPad instead of buying the stupid thing. So you know.
1:44:14 - Anthony Ha
I think I am going to reward myself with a Steam Deck this year, but yeah right now I'm just doing like Steam Deck is the best.
1:44:19 - Devindra Hardawar
Steam Deck is so great. Well, especially right now the Steam Deck OLED just hit and we reviewed that over in gadget 2 and I even I am tempted, Like I bought the original, the highest in one, when it came out, like two years ago. I'm like, oh, oled screen, slightly better screen, and I like the Steam Deck so much that I'm tempted. But yeah, so the PlayStation Portal is half the price of the entry level Steam Deck, which can actually play games and be useful offline. It is the same price as the Nintendo Switch Lite, which is a system you can buy to play Legend of Zelda, tears of the Kingdom, like that. That alone, like, sells the usefulness more than the PlayStation Portal.
I've heard from people who were interested in the portal of like if my TV is in use, like if somebody, if I'm in a small apartment, I have one TV I want to play some games but my partner is on, you know, watching some go on the set, like you could use this. But yeah, it's such a specific use case, it is so expensive and yeah, also it's streaming. So all the problems of streaming. Just check out my review folks. I also did a video review of that. But yeah, if you cannot trust a device I cannot recommend. I can't recommend it Like ultimately. Like that's it. I ran into random networking issues. I was able to use it remotely over tethering but that's just because I was lucky enough to like get super fast 5G Ultra Wideband where I was actually parked, so that kind of worked out pretty well. But yeah, the portal kind of a dud. I like your mini review, paris. Just just get a Steam Deck or just wait for the next switch.
1:45:48 - Paris Martineau
That's going to be my review for most gaming devices. I was fortunate that.
1:45:54 - Alex Lindsay
I got addicted to tower defense games, which are just not really that big of a deal on on consoles, so so that's all I play as tower right now. I think Kingdom Rush, I think, is the one that I play, and but it's just a tower defense and I can play it on my phone just as easily as anywhere else, and but I am waiting to see what platform bungee releases marathon. As an old marathon player, I'm like, oh, I might have to buy whatever they put marathon on to.
1:46:18 - Devindra Hardawar
I mean Max are becoming better gaming platforms. Now you could play Liza P on a Mac I was playing like the wildest things, I was playing Baldur's Gate 3 and it could use my save from the from steam, because it's all steam and works fine on Max now. So I don't know, just a wild thing.
1:46:35 - Alex Lindsay
I just went marathon arena and I'm good, I can just play, and then I can play with that one level the whole time.
1:46:40 - Devindra Hardawar
Have you seen? Valve put out a documentary for the 25th anniversary of Half-Life? And it is. It's from the no clip folks, so it looks great. It's really cool and super informative for old school gamers. Go check that out on Valve's YouTube page and you know what? Let's take a quick break. Let's check in with Leo for a word from our sponsor.
1:46:59 - Leo Laporte
Hi, dervinder, are you getting tired of me? Yet I'm back again. Look, thank you for doing the show. I appreciate it. I do want to mention that this week in tech is brought to you this week by Wix web agencies. You're going to love this one.
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1:48:24 - Devindra Hardawar
Thanks, leo. You know one thing you had brought up previously, alex. I think is worth talking about YouTube requiring disclosures when videos are using generative AI. It seems like a useful thing, like it does seem like YouTube and Google are thinking more about the state of like, how media is going to be made, moving forward, the potential dangers of using generative AI when people aren't aware. I saw some I think some news agencies were using AI produced images for war coverage recently and they were completely fake and completely overblown Like. What do you think about this?
1:49:02 - Alex Lindsay
I don't think any real news organizations were using AI for that. There's definitely people who are posting those things. I think that and quote news organizations, yes, yeah, I mean I think that we have to start being able to tell people that this is real or this isn't real, because, man, you can at least with mid-journey you can get the stuff that looks pretty real. So it is hard for people to understand what that is, and I think that a little bit of it is a At the beginning it's going to be scouts on or kind of thing. I mean you have to declare it, yeah, but I think that so that's going to be, and I don't know how far the watermarks will get. The digital watermarks that they're suggesting get put into a lot of these things. I think we're at a point where mid-journey is doing a pretty good job. I don't think that the dolly is not quite there yet, like you can usually see a dolly one for a mile away, whereas mid-journey you can build stuff that it's very hard to tell the difference between that and the photograph, and so understanding what those things are. And then it starts to look at some of the video stuff. When you look at runway AI, they're starting to ramp up. They're not there yet, but they're starting to get to a point where that starts to look pretty real, and so I do think that it helps.
Again, it's scouts on or at the moment. Obviously they'll start to. I have a feeling that they're going to start this and then YouTube will come down pretty hard on people who don't declare it. If you don't start declaring what you're doing, they're going to penalize you pretty hard. So I think that that's going to be. I don't know if they'll do that at the beginning. I think they're trying to get everybody in the corral, but they're going to tighten that calculation pretty quickly and I do think that it helps. I think the only danger is always thinking that something is believable because there's some Seat belts save a lot of people, but it's proof that people also drive a lot harder with seat belts on. So there's this in between you should wear seat belts on that station. Please wear a seat belt. There's a person in my neighborhood.
1:50:59 - Devindra Hardawar
There's official podcast. Yeah, the official podcast. Let me tell you, don't have conversations with people, folks. Because I talked to somebody in my neighborhood. I thought they were a normal person and then they told me they don't believe in seat belts and I had to back away from that conversation.
1:51:11 - Alex Lindsay
They're just not connected to. They like to live large. But I think that it's like there's a more head injury. This is a good example there's more head injuries in the NFL because they have helmets. I mean, the helmets cause you to hit each other a lot harder than you would otherwise in a lot of different ways, and so the challenge really is that we don't want to get into a thing where we lull like, well, if I doesn't say that it's not, if it doesn't say that it has AI in it, it must not have AI in it. We don't know. And I think that I think people have to learn to not trust, and I think this is actually a still. I'll keep saying this over and over again it's not.
We shouldn't have been trusting what we see as much as we see it. I have to admit that my former job I spent a lot of time not telling lies, but not necessarily framing things, so that was my job. Like so, for instance, you show up at an event and it's supposed to be a protest and only 20 people show up. You raise the camera and you point down, and now you raise the camera and you change that angle. I'm not lying, but I'm not telling the whole truth either, like it's not the whole truth of oh, there was almost nobody here.
That doesn't make any good news coverage, and so the thing is is that you see those kind of manipulations all the time. So we shouldn't have been trusting Been as trusting of the press as we have been. We should always be looking for multiple points of view, and those points of view should not agree with each other. So I want to see If I see something that I see that makes me really upset. If I'm watching MSNBC, I should know what Fox says about it, I should know what other things say, so that I can start to measure those things. And I think that with AI, we have to learn to not take that single point of view as what is the truth. I mean we shouldn't be gathering slowly.
1:53:05 - Devindra Hardawar
I'm already dreading entering another election year with fully powered AI stuff happening Like I don't know. Alex, from your experience I know Mid Journey and Dolly are doing well with Image Generation now, but is there anything doing like actually good realistic video generation?
1:53:22 - Alex Lindsay
Runway is probably the furthest along. Runwayai is probably the furthest along as far as I guess I would say, as a publicly available. There's some stuff that people are working on that, some models that are a little bit more, that are not part of Runwayai, but I think Runway the stuff that I've seen that has been the most impressive has been from Runway, so that's probably the furthest one along.
1:53:43 - Devindra Hardawar
And actually in the vein of, I guess, questioning what you're seeing, there was a big story that popped up over the last week about people on TikTok reading Osama Bin Laden's letter to America and basically saying, oh man, my world is changed.
1:54:01 - Paris Martineau
It's got real good points.
1:54:02 - Devindra Hardawar
I guess Mid Journey's got some good points and TikTok said it would start removing those videos and there was a lot of like. There's definitely a lot of hand wringing about people little thing. Oh my God. I cannot believe TikTok is promoting this. From what I see, the aftermath as described by Ryan Broderick over at the Garbage Day newsletter, which is great and you should subscribe to it is that it was not really a trend. It was a small amount of videos that were making this point. It didn't seem like they were being overly promoted or anything and it wasn't like an actual viral trend. It was a couple people basically doing this and it didn't seem like it made much of a difference. But I remember that initial wave of reaction to this, like I cannot believe what the youths are doing on TikTok. They're agreeing with the time I've been on. That's insane. Any thoughts on this whole media response to it and the actual aftermath?
1:54:58 - Alex Lindsay
There's a lot of crazy people out there saying a lot of crazy things.
1:55:00 - Devindra Hardawar
Oh, yes, A lot of them are on broadcast. Too many people can broadcast their thoughts right now.
1:55:11 - Alex Lindsay
I always look back on. I was during in 2000,. Before all of this stuff hit, I was doing training in Zimbabwe. I was doing media training in Zimbabwe. I was partnering with a school there and I happened to set up my trip during the 2000 elections, which is where everything kind of shifted in Zimbabwe. So I happened to be on the ground when the elections were happening and what I saw being reported by CNN, being reported by all these, was so different. I was in downtown Harare watching them report on it and I have to say that that is what broke me in my belief in you know, like it was like.
That's why I have to see this in a bunch of different places before I'm going to believe any of this stuff. You know, and the thing is, is that is that you know, we have to understand that that our media has been manipulated for a very long time. You know like, like, forever, like, for you know, like, and so the thing is, is that that we have to understand that? You know, when we see these kinds of things, that it's, it's been not, this is not. This is no new tale to tell. You know, like us, you know, and, and so I take everything with a grain of salt. I take everything, everything I look at, and I go, I get upset, my blood goes up. I go I'm going to have to look at this a couple in a couple of different directions. I have to see what other people are saying about this and how this is going. And I know that not everybody does that. But if you're not doing that, you don't know what's going on. You know, and and from then I you know, because of my job, I was because of what I did for a decade, I was often in the room where where those things happened, and you know, and the thing is is that is that I could you know what was being reported on set, like I had a. I pulled a 15 during the Obama Romney debate.
I finished a bunch of work that I had been doing in that building and I was leaving and the door was open to the debate. The debate was live when I was leaving it, because all my stuff was done before then. And I'm this is the first time I think I've ever said this in public what happened? So anyway, so, so the so I'm, I'm coming out of the building. We had been doing a bunch of Google Hangouts and stuff like that. And so I've been coming out of the building and there was these. You know, you see these cable runs, right, you know these, the trays that have all the cables in them.
And there was one that was stainless steel and I had never seen one like that and I never thought about how much noise it will make when I go over it with a 10, with a 1510 case, and so I went over it and it just made this boom like this really loud bang. And what happened was a secret service person was sitting right there and he just goes it's nothing Like you know, he just that was the. That was the end of it for free, because he was standing at the open door. But you got to get Romney, I think it was. Romney was like 15 feet from that door inside of the thing when this loud bang happened. He saw it, secret service saw it wasn't worried about me when I came up.
That all happened and that made a news round Like it was like every like back then. If you did a search and even now you probably can find a couple of things about loud bang if you do a search for loud bang at at Romney Obama, you know, whatever. There was all of these conspiracy theories that someone got shot and there was all this stuff and everything and I and I and I at the time I was like I am not going to tell people, I'm like I'm not, I can't do that, because I was. It was you, but it was another one of those things that definitely affected my view of the news, because it was.
It made a news cycle, I mean, that night it was like on Fox and it was on all these other things and there was all and it was just like it was a 1510 going over a, you know, over a, you know a little a little cable ramp and so. So it's one of those things that we just have to understand, when we look at all of these things, that we have to be very careful about what we believe. You know, and I'm not nihilistic, you know, or nihilistic or whatever. I'm not saying you shouldn't believe anything. I'm just saying you have to be very careful and triangulate the solution, because it's never what it seems.
1:59:04 - Devindra Hardawar
Yeah, I mean, I think part of it to people, if they're understand, is like reporting as much as you're reporting on something that's happening in the moment, like it is a it's, it's like a growing experience, right Like it is. You don't always have perfect information, so a lot of people are reporting what they know, and what they know just may not be correct, and that's often what we're seeing. I mean, we saw several examples of this as, as conflict was brewing between Israel and Palestine, like we saw this in the Ukraine war as well. So it's it's hard to trust anything, I guess, at this point. And so meanwhile, as we're in this wonderful headspace, metta has announced it's allowing ads claiming that the 2020 election was rigged on Facebook and Instagram. So really, just really helping the whole situation out here when it comes to fake news.
1:59:52 - Anthony Ha
Although I love the caveat that they want, they still won't allow ads that are contesting current elections. It's just the past elections that you're allowed to to say we're rigged.
2:00:02 - Paris Martineau
Specifically the past election. You're allowed to pay Metta to amplify a post that you have, saying that the past election was rigged. I think it's an interesting. They won't not take that money, you see yeah they won't, they'll definitely pocket it and let you, you know, let you boost that post.
2:00:20 - Alex Lindsay
Yeah, I think that there's it's. It's complicated. You know, the first, first amendment in the United States gets complicated about what you can and can't say about those things, and you know, I think that we we get upset about it. But I think that the other thing that we have to look at is that again, you know which lies are the ones that we should post and which ones we shouldn't, and saying that you absolutely can't say these things is not something that generally you can do in the, in the I'm not saying I mean I think that that's a valid point, yeah, but it's not a case of the.
2:00:47 - Paris Martineau
it's not a first amendment. Concern whether or not you can pay a company to have specific speech and advertising. I mean that's a business transaction with a private company, which is well from their rights to, you know, make any sort of rules as to what they want to do and what you can't like. You can't, I don't know, advertise off market drugs on Facebook, but you could probably post about them.
2:01:10 - Alex Lindsay
Yeah, yeah, I mean the, as, as someone who worked pretty closely on the 2020 election, it's not as clear cut as it would seem. I'm not saying that anyone no one broke the law, but I will say that I was pretty close to the where it happened. So so it's it's not, as I will tell you that it's not, you know, it's not as clear cut as people.
2:01:41 - Devindra Hardawar
I mean there's it's a weird topic to just deal with right now. We are almost four years off of that thing and I live in Georgia, so there has been a lot of focus here in terms of what's been happening when it comes to election integrity, and I don't think anything illegal happened.
2:01:54 - Alex Lindsay
Yeah, like I don't think that anything illegal happened, I think things there. It's a complicated puzzle.
2:02:01 - Devindra Hardawar
Mm, hmm, mm hmm.
2:02:03 - Anthony Ha
You know, one of the things I've like swung back and forth on too is like feeling sometimes like there are these kind of moral panics around and this goes back also to the TikTok thing these sort of moral panics around things that are on social media, as if you know, when they kind of treat something bad being posted on Facebook or on TikTok as being the source of all of our problems, and I think that's obviously not the place. I think they can amplify them.
And you know, certainly in this case, I'm not crazy about this Facebook policy, but I do think like it and again, this is one that I feel genuinely torn about because I think sometimes in the past I was, I was probably too sanguine about, like the kind of stuff that would get posted, but I do. I feel like I'm swinging back and forth a little bit on this where I am, like, you know, facebook is never going to save us, right, you know, like it's. It's like the fact that, like, we have such awful discourse kind of around the election about the legitimacy of the election, I think is something that happens on Facebook, but it's not something that Facebook is responsible for, and the problems are sort of bigger and I wish they had a different policy. But I also think that, like, sometimes we focus on the tech companies because they sort of make for easy villains in this conversation.
2:03:22 - Devindra Hardawar
I mean they're, they're the, they are the platforms, right? So it's like well, who else? Who else am I going to complain about in terms of allowing this?
2:03:27 - Paris Martineau
So, yeah, yeah, but it's also like a tool. You know I mean technology is the same. Like it is like complaining. It's about, like you know, hundreds of years ago, complaining because people were using the printing press to spread misinformation. The printing press isn't the actor of evil, it is the person who printed the pamphlet.
2:03:48 - Alex Lindsay
Well, and again, I think that educating people in general about what the issues are and making sure that they are, you know, I think we have to keep on working on that and making sure that people are looking at things through a critical filter. I think that the real danger we have is that people start to whether it's conservative or liberal or whatever it is that we have to be careful and we have to constantly tell people to question what they're looking at. You know, they just really it's really important to question what they're looking at and use multiple sources of information to make decisions and not take anything. You know, when we looked at this I don't know for the first, I don't know, I'm sure that all of us on the show read many of those articles and then other articles and then talk to other people that are connected and did all that. I know for the last.
You know, I was really nervous about the first part of the show, and so I talked to people that are pretty close to a lot of those things. I, you know, I read every article I could find. I've been reading them for you know, watching this whole thing, and that you start to see a picture that may or may not be true, but it gets clearer as you start to look at it, whereas if you read one of those articles, you're not going to know. You know, and I think that I think that it's important, that we need we build a more critical viewership, as opposed to not believing that any of any of it is absolute truth, because it's not even oftentimes done on purpose. People are just wrong, like they're, just they have a wrong opinion about it, and it's not. They're not doing anything to try to drive people that direction. They're just not. They don't have all the data.
2:05:11 - Devindra Hardawar
Well, you know what's speaking about platforms that I think are maybe maybe not doing that so great when it comes to like dealing with hate speech. We've seen news about several companies announcing that they're pulling advertising from X following, you know, a rise in anti-Semitic posts, but specifically Elon Musk essentially supporting one, supporting an anti-Semitic conspiracy theory. So we see Apple, ibm that's a funny one, we could talk about that later and other companies kind of pulling their advertising because of this. So this is Elon's Twitter. This is yet another story, elon's Twitter. Any thoughts on this?
2:05:52 - Paris Martineau
I feel like no, this feels new, give some context, which is that this is all in response to. On Wednesday, elon Musk responded to a tweet that said it kind of claimed that Jewish communities support, quote dialectical hatred against whites, and quote. And Musk responded you've said the actual truth to that post, which is kind of what kicked all this off.
2:06:16 - Devindra Hardawar
Yes, which is that that is basically approving replacement. Was it replacement? The great replacement theory, the great replacement theory, like that's the conspiracy, that, yeah, minorities are trying to push out white people, unfortunately. But he basically proved that. So, yeah, that seemed bad, that didn't seem very useful.
2:06:36 - Alex Lindsay
I'm kind of amazed at the number of self-inflicted wounds he's capable of, as someone who you know, like there's just there's got to be people at Twitter, just like, just stop talking. Like, just stop talking. All you have to do is not do anything. You know, and, and it would Twitter would probably do well, but he, it is really concerning that he's you know, and, again, this is his platform and he bought it and he owns it and all those things, but I think that it's it's concerning for the platform to have someone who, again, that undermines the that process by you know, it's just a.
2:07:11 - Devindra Hardawar
I mean, it's right now, it's a microphone into who he actually is, so that that is the unfortunate thing, Like if Elon Musk had just shut up, and certainly if he shut up but also didn't buy Twitter, his legacy you know, if you froze it, I don't know five, 10 years ago certainly would be in a much better place, but it's, I don't know, funny thing to remember is also that is that he tried to not buy Twitter, that, in fact, the board forced him to buy Twitter.
The board forced him to because there's a I don't know if the full story of that Contract.
2:07:40 - Paris Martineau
You know, forced him yeah.
2:07:42 - Devindra Hardawar
2:07:43 - Anthony Ha
The board was you know, and I think they had, yeah, financial reasons to do that. But it is funny to me that like there was this very upside down situation where I was like, well, this seems like this is obviously going to go badly, and yet he's essentially being pushed into this thing. That will be terrible for everyone.
2:07:57 - Devindra Hardawar
Truly the definition of effing around and finding out basically like that's he is finding out quite a bit right now.
2:08:03 - Alex Lindsay
Well, it was just the, you know. The bottom line was the board was never going to get a number, never get a price like that again, and Twitter's survival was probably any question at the time that he did it. And so, from a fiduciary duty to the investor, sell to the troll sell. Yes, Well, to a fiduciary duty to the investors. The board did the right thing in making great for sure.
There there are any kind of duty that they had which they don't in that board, and this is the difference between open AI and they didn't have a responsibility to the users, which they just threw to the wolves, you know, and so and so the buy in the wolves, in this case Elon Musk, and so so I think that that is, you know, it's it's a pretty complicated thing that he, that he again, he has hold a hold of and and a big you know stick there, but all the he would be okay, like a lot of the stuff he's doing is not necessarily wrong, like the idea of, you know, forcing people to pay for something means they have to give their credit card, which means you know that they're a person you know like and so you're you're, you're doing a hard idea against people.
It's very hard to build a bot network if you have to give a credit card for every person. So I get the model there because it's not making any money. I mean, it's not going to make any money, it's. It's there to do hard IDs and so the thing is, is that? So I get what he's doing there, but everything else is so ham-fisted. You're just like, oh, you know, it's just difficult.
2:09:27 - Devindra Hardawar
I've also read a lot of commentary that a lot of bot nets and spam nets have access to lots of credit cards, so like even just having the payment details is not enough to like confirm.
2:09:35 - Alex Lindsay
It's a lot of them. I mean, you know like yeah.
2:09:37 - Paris Martineau
And if you're talking about the like people who would be incentivized to use a credit card to sign up on mass and pay like $1, someone who's running a bot net and is getting some sort of financial gain out of it, that dollar per account is going to be worth it to them, more so than you know, some random Joe Schmo who's thinking of checking out this platform, xcom or whatever.
2:09:59 - Alex Lindsay
Yeah, I, I. The thing is is that it just it just gives you a hard pin in the ground. You know, like a lot, of, a lot of we. You know it makes it much easier for you to identify patterns and so on and so forth that people have to give you a credit card. You know, and the thing, and yeah, so, so it, it definitely is. I agree with you and I think that that is you know it. It it gives them a lot more access to that.
You know, youtube was kind of going down the right path in 2013, I think, when they were going to real names and people just lost their minds over YouTube possibly doing real names but that. But now they still, youtube still cannot get control of their comments. You know, like, it is just and, and you know, and, and the way to do that is to is to get hard IDs. You know, and people don't want to do that because they want to say whatever they want to say, but the way to, the way to tame that is to get hard IDs, like you know. So that's the and that's and, and.
I've worked, I've built social networks for a couple of decades and the first thing we do is everybody's got to use real names. Like I'll just kick you like in in our discord for office hours, which is what we do here. It's all real names and we won't let you talk until you give put your real name in, like you know, that's the, you know. Like you can't post anything until you put a real name in something. That's it calms. It calms everything really quickly.
2:11:14 - Devindra Hardawar
One thing I just want to point out. It is certainly interesting to see IBM among the company's pulling ads here, because I don't know there's history about IBM and the Holocaust and the business they did supporting the Holocaust. That is not really talked about.
2:11:28 - Alex Lindsay
Well, that'd be the reason for them to do it first. That's true.
2:11:31 - Anthony Ha
You don't want to be, you want to be Nobody, nobody, yeah nobody talk about a selling database technology to Hitler, please Well, I mean the same way that I mean Germany has some of like the most kind of stringent kind of laws against anything that might seem anti-Semitic speech. It's just kind of like, all right, well, we fuck that up. Well, I also love that. I mean NBC universal, which is, you know, the former company of Linda Yocchi, who's now the CEO, also pulled their advertising, so everybody's kind of like all her friends abandoned her.
2:11:59 - Paris Martineau
Yeah, and I mean. Forbes reported earlier today that you know, in addition to all these companies pausing spending advertising, like spending money advertising on X, a bunch of different top advertising executives have made personal pleas to CEO Linda Yocchi saying like, hey, you should resign. This is getting to the point where this is going to deeply damage your credibility and it might be the only way to get through to Elon. You should step down.
2:12:26 - Alex Lindsay
Yeah it's, it's ugly Like, and again, I think that he probably has a convoluted belief system that has that all. It's probably much less problematic in his head in the way he thinks of it than it, than we think it is, but it still looks really bad and it really really sounds like we need to be in the position to defend anti-Semitic.
2:12:46 - Paris Martineau
No, no, no, no.
2:12:47 - Alex Lindsay
I'm just saying that he's got some kind of convoluted thing. That's, that's in there and it is. He should just process that a little bit longer before he. I'm trying to give him the best, the benefit of the doubt, I mean, but it is so. It is like not speakable, like what he's talking about is not. It's not okay. Not, not okay, but also like, like, not, this isn't, this is. But.
2:13:10 - Anthony Ha
I think the flip side is that it's also like it's not surprising to me at all that he said it Like this is like entirely consistent with what he's been tweeting for the last few years.
2:13:18 - Alex Lindsay
Yeah, Silence, Like we're just like. I don't know, I don't know who it is the richest man in the world down in Twitter, and this is what he chooses to say.
But I do. I do want to say that, like if we wanted Twitter to have some social meaning or social power, we should blame the board to some degree, because they did tie him into this. Like you know, he wanted out and if they were doing the right thing for the world, they would have let him out of that deal. What they did was did the right thing for the, you know for the investors, you know for the stakeholders. They did the right thing for them, which is their, their duty, but do the right thing, in my opinion, would have been to let him out of that, let him out of that deal and walk away and find another solution, and I think that they didn't do the right thing.
2:14:05 - Paris Martineau
Okay, but to tile this back and kind of a roundabout way, this is kind of a a twisted version of the setup we were talking about at the beginning of the show. The board of directors in this case has a fiduciary obligation to do the right thing for their bottom line. But you know, like, let's say, if Twitter had had some sort of strange nonprofit board where their whole prerogative is to do the right thing for the world, it might have been a different situation.
2:14:29 - Alex Lindsay
I mean, I can see how the the problem they would have had most likely is they probably would have been if they had let him off the hook. They probably would have been sued by the investors saying, hey, those are buyout and everything else. I do think that maybe, maybe not different than open AI, but I think Twitter had reached some point where it almost became a public utility for a lot of folks and there could be an argument that allowing a person to take it private and do whatever they want with it, you know, maybe may have a larger impact on the world than than what we do.
2:15:02 - Devindra Hardawar
So maybe bad things yeah, bad things for humanity.
2:15:06 - Anthony Ha
Unfortunately. But it is also a reminder that, yes, if, if, for some reason, open AI came up with a different governance structure that seems more similar to what we expect from a for profit company, that might be better for the company in the short term, but actually may not be a great thing in the long term.
2:15:22 - Devindra Hardawar
I mean any any traditional capitalist structure is not great for us in the long term. Unfortunately, like that's unfortunately it and speaking of that, let's tune to Leo for a word from our sponsors.
2:15:33 - Leo Laporte
Okay, this is the last time I promised to Vindra, until next week. This episode of this week attack is brought to you by trace route. If now, if you've been listening, you've heard us tell you about the new season of trace route, they kick it off by exploring a topic we are all deeply interested in, which is the ongoing and challenging relationship between humanity and artificial intelligence. Is AI our friend or our worst enemy? You know, I'm I'm pretty much not sure, which is why I was really interested to listen to season three of trace route. You can get on your on your favorite podcast listening platform. It really helped me at least crystallize in my mind what AI is good for, what it ain't good for and what the threats from AI are.
Trace route, it's a podcast about the people that's important, the people who shape our digital world. Every story peels back the layers of the stack to reveal the humanity in the hardware. Season three has just begun. They just started at the beginning of the month. First two shows about AI, but they're going to explore topics that can shape our society in profound ways the intersection of, for instance, tech and conservation, and how researchers are using machine learning and robotics to debug an invasive species to offer unique solutions. Technological crises I haven't heard that one yet, I can't wait and digital migration for the preservation of history, culture and land, and a whole lot more Get keyed in to the conversation right now.
Listen and subscribe to the new season of trace route. You'll find it on Apple, spotify or wherever you get podcasts right next to us. Check out trace route right now. We thank him so much for supporting this week in tech, and thank you to vendor and company for filling in for me while I'm gone Alex Lindsey, scott Stein. We appreciate it and I will be back in a couple of weeks. Take care.
2:17:32 - Devindra Hardawar
What's happening on the tweet this week.
2:17:35 - Ant Pruitt
Please welcome to the live stage here Mr Renee Richie. Matt Brick, weekly host YouTube creator. Friend of Micah Sargent, friend of Georgia Dow, now at YouTube.
2:17:49 - Alex Stamos
I gotta keep the cat videos flowing or people get upset.
2:17:54 - Leo Laporte
Previously on Tweet Windows Weekly. I think I can tell from our hosts, richard Campbell and Paul Therrott, that they are at Microsoft Ignite in Seattle. Hello gentlemen, how many shots?
2:18:06 - Devindra Hardawar
did we take when Jared was saying co-pilot?
2:18:09 - Leo Laporte
If we had taken shots every time they said co-pilot, we would both be dead.
2:18:14 - Devindra Hardawar
Tech News Weekly A really big, literally breaking news right before the show story about Apple supporting RCS sometime next year. Will Saddleburg from Android Police talks all about that and there goes a pig flying through the sky this week in Google.
2:18:31 - Leo Laporte
So how much influence does a Twitter troll farm have?
2:18:35 - Alex Stamos
Like. My personal index here is that Elon Musk tweeted something nasty about me very soon after he bought it, about a year ago, and I got all these death threats and he just did it again this last week and nothing. So like that was a good sign. That was a tweet Alex Death Threat Index is way down.
2:18:59 - Devindra Hardawar
Music so many shows I have to catch up on. It seems like so many fun times. One thing I want to talk about folks. There are some fun stories for the end of the show, but there was news, an internal memo Amazon plans to cut several hundred Alexa jobs as it ends unspecified initiatives that guarantee geek wire. Basically, it sounds like a lot of Alexa people who are working on Alexa are leaving and the company's plans to be refocusing its efforts on generative AI and maybe repositioning Alexa. I don't think any of this is too surprising, given like the shift we've seen in AI this year and how Alexa is not quite built to do that. But do you'll have any thoughts about this and thoughts about your Lexis? Are you Alexa users?
2:19:47 - Paris Martineau
I mean this isn't particularly surprising. I could be misremembering the number, but I believe the Amazon's devices team, before all these layoffs, was one of the largest teams in the company as far as corporate goes.
Eight thousand is the number that's coming to my mind, probably somewhere close to ten people working on devices and Alexa AI, which has always really surprised me, because even internal Amazon studies showed that most people, once they get in Alexa, their usage of it drops off within the first year significantly. I mean people use the Alexa just for like what's the weather, set a timer, you know? Place of music.
2:20:25 - Alex Stamos
Which is useful, but that's all which is useful, but it's not what they originally thought we're going to.
2:20:30 - Paris Martineau
You know, I don't know if you have an Alexa, I have one. I'm sorry also for anybody listening to this with a speaker on and we're pinging the device.
2:20:38 - Devindra Hardawar
That's true. We should be saying Amazon.
2:20:39 - Paris Martineau
Assistant. We should say like Amazon, echo or something like that. But whenever I talk to my Echo it always is trying to upsell me on something. It's trying to get me to tip my driver trying to get me to do some package thing. They're always trying to choose those numbers and it's just not working.
2:20:55 - Devindra Hardawar
They should have buy it quite a bit in terms of reminders and so many things. Because there are things like when that stuff first came out, like certainly I think it was the first like virtual assistant that I think was actually useful, right, because Amazon had fully built around audio and around speech recognition and just like doing simple commands, so they were doing a better job than Google Assistant at the time in Syria at the time, for sure. And I have one in almost every room in my house now that I think about it, like I use it enough where it's in my bedroom for sitting alarms. I have the like little cute nightlight one or has the LED clock in front of it, so it looks very cute. You know they're good for me.
2:21:33 - Paris Martineau
How many like you have different Alexas and all different.
2:21:36 - Devindra Hardawar
Alexas. I have the Echo studio in my kitchen which is the big boy speaker, which sounds really, really good. I have a Sonos move in my living room which has Alexa integration. I've got the Echo dot in my bedroom with that nice little LED you know clock. So they serve different purposes. But also there are things like. There are things you could add, their skills you could add. So with my first kid we learned that there was an app we used for tracking things like diapers and feedings and stuff. So we could just say, like Alexa, log a wet diaper. And that changed my life because like you would have to do that dozens of times a day versus going into the app and like tracking it and everything. And that was helpful to know if the kid was sick or if something was changing. So for me that was a really good functional thing. Also, if you have smartphone stuff, alexa integration is really good with that. So you know, those sorts of things I think are useful. Anthony, alex, any thoughts about like where Alexa is going?
2:22:32 - Alex Lindsay
as a person that that you. This name is Alex. I do not use an Alexa in my house because you could change the name.
2:22:39 - Devindra Hardawar
You could change it to computer.
2:22:40 - Alex Lindsay
I know I should have been to another one, but I was just kind of like it. It was so many misfires that I was just like, okay, I'm not going to figure out, and I just went back to series because my son's name is Alexander and I haven't been a problem yet, so we shall see.
We have not. Really it was firing off and I know that I think I just didn't know exactly how to fix it. All I knew is that it was firing off all the time and I just like, and I had a show you know I used to show and which my parents still love. They use it all the time. But but yeah, it was. It was when those things work.
2:23:11 - Devindra Hardawar
It is kind of magic, especially the show devices. Anthony, any thoughts?
2:23:15 - Anthony Ha
No, I mean I'm worried. I'm just giving people the impression that I'm a lot, which maybe I secretly am.
2:23:19 - Devindra Hardawar
We are looking at Anthony's room and I see our books.
2:23:24 - Anthony Ha
But all I have is a is a Google Home Mini in the kitchen, which I only got because it was, like you know, free to Spotify subscribers for a while, and then, at a certain point, I turned the microphone off because I was just, like you know, like the value I get from this you just want to play music and like relative to like the thought of Google having a bunch of recordings in my voice. I'd rather just turn the microphone off and control it from my phone. So, but I mean, I think that, like I understand that like a lot of people don't feel that way, and you know that's, that's fine.
2:23:54 - Devindra Hardawar
Well, right now. They're fun little tools, but I can certainly imagine like the thing missing from Alexa and Siri and everything is like well, it could tell you the weather, right, it could give you very basic information. It can't like really fetch complex information. You can't really have a conversation with it. So, from what we've seen from all of these like you know, generative, not generally I have a large language model of things like chat, gbt, like when you can talk to something it's actually fetching information and can hold a conversation, Then that really just changes the game. So I would fire Amazon. I'd be like, yeah, fully, fully, putting pedal to the metal to make sure Alexa is like the best when it comes to like generative or not, but AI driven, you know virtual assistant stuff. But I feel like everybody's probably thinking that now too right, Like we already know, that's going to be a big deal in Google Assistant soon. I feel like Apple is the only one where it's like I don't, we don't really know what's going to happen with Siri.
2:24:49 - Alex Lindsay
I think, I think, I think it's still the problem is is that the number one use I have an Apple, like one of the speakers the big, the original one, the big speaker that they have and that sits in our, in our kitchen, and the number one use for it is to either play music or to do timers. So I agree, like timers are the thing like you call, like I, you, my wife is using it constantly for timers and other than that, it's like getting to play music and we and I think that is a function that it's not very good, other than if you, it used to be, I think that they, I think they've dumbed it down because it's, I think they turned the attitude level down a little bit, you know, but but asking, asking the Apple products to close the pod bay doors was always fun. There's like there used to be like eight or 10 responses to closing the pod bay doors. That that was, that was great, and so the couple little hidden things like that that were in there.
2:25:42 - Devindra Hardawar
But maybe we shouldn't pick fun, poke fun at the you know evil AI because we're getting too close with, I don't know, maybe even they were getting afraid.
2:25:49 - Paris Martineau
Yeah, any other thoughts on like the Alexa team or what I have, one would make you just my, the one recommendation I have that is actually a good thing in an Amazon Assistant product is you can tell your device to make cat noises and it's a scale that will just make cat noises and if you own a cat it will really freak them out and it's quite fun.
2:26:10 - Devindra Hardawar
I have three cats and my wife turned that on, so I'm always hearing like Alexa will meow before before doing things. We live in the cat house. It is. It is just wild. I'm very glad that this next story dropped because we have Alex Lindsay on the show and I am somebody who have been waiting patiently for the abyss to get a beautiful re-release.
James Cameron's the abyss has been a movie that's been really hard to watch for a very long time, and that's actually been true for a bunch of his movies. I think true lies. It was hard to. I think eventually true lies was on Hulu. I think the abyss was even on HBO for some time, but the quality wasn't great. The print wasn't great. I love this movie. The last time I saw the abyss was like at a Nighthawk theater the Williamsburg Nighthawk on a ratty print that was clearly from the 90s and it's like so dirty, so speckled, but still such a beautiful film.
The news is out that Cameron's 4k restoration of the abyss is is happening. Well, we actually he already screened it, but it has a blu-ray release date and on December 6 it's gonna be screened in theaters. I feel like just one day, let me see here on March 12, 2024. It's gonna hit discs of 4k blu-rays and also that's along with true lies. The true lies is getting collectors edition. Then to my question is what? What the hell? What took so long? Like, what is James Cameron's at the bottom of the ocean? He's making Avatar movies, but come on.
2:27:47 - Alex Lindsay
So James Cameron I mean the level of control, personality that James Cameron has is epic. You know like I know a lot of folks that worked with James Cameron. I've been in the other room when something didn't go well, on the other side of a wall, james Cameron, when something in the visual effects was not going well, and you could, I mean it was like I'm surprised things weren't shaking in my room. He was yelling so much. You know like it was.
So his upset is, you know, is kind of epic. The so the thing is is that he's not going to want to do it unless he has the time to sit down and go through every single shot and make every little bit of make it just perfect for what he wants to do. And he's busy like he does a lot of things, he's in a lot of places and so and I'm sure I think you know it's one of those things that he'll get around to it when he gets around to it. I think that he also tends to be very future oriented. You know like he's looking at the next thing he's working on. The old stuff doesn't matter to him that much. A lot of people who are of action don't really look back and go until they retire or stop. They don't have like, they're like OK, well, this will take me weeks to go through all of this.
2:28:53 - Devindra Hardawar
He's never going to stop. He's always moving forward with something.
2:28:55 - Alex Lindsay
But all these Avatar movies and he's got. He's got a bunch of things on his plate and then he's diving and then he's doing these other things. And so you have to understand that, like, he's just not that interested, you know, in the older stuff. I understand.
2:29:06 - Devindra Hardawar
I felt the pain.
2:29:08 - Alex Lindsay
Yeah, just not. A lot of people like that are just not that interested in going back until they're with everything, because then they really have to. Because here's the problem is, he doesn't want to just hand it to. He's not the kind of guy that's going to hand it to the studio. Just let them do whatever they're going to do. You know he's going to want to look at every frame, make sure that it is what he wants. And there are some challenges.
So a lot of films, for instance, when they're done at, when you watch them at a lower resolution, they all look great, you know, and when you watch them in the movie theater they looked great. And now, the reason they looked great when you watch them in the movie theater is because you were watching the fifth generation. So they made a copy of the original print and then they make a copy of that and then a copy you know like to get to 3000 prints. You have to make copies of these and you have to copy them out so that you have a bunch of sources, and so it could be anywhere from the third to the fifth generation. As that happens, it starts to soften. You know so, the, so the. So you know. So the and you can get away, and the reason that that's important. You get away with a lot of things, like I don't know what the abyss is like, but I can tell you when they put out the HD version of the Patriot you know with, and half of the shots are out of focus. Well, you didn't notice that in theater, but when you watch the pristine version of them, they are all out of focus and so they're just a little off, little off, little off. Whoever's doing the focus point there did not do well, and you don't notice it when you watch it in the film, but you will notice it when you watch it on your you know 4k, you know screen and so and you're re scanning it at that resolution. Also, the visual effects. Visual effects were very, very new.
The little trivia for you the water sleuth the very first shot of the water sleuth coming out. That is the first truly CG shot like CG CG. I'm sorry, it's not the first CG shot. It's the first computer composited shot ever, so that that one was there and they actually had to. I talked to John Knowle about it and he was like they didn't have enough RAM in the Pixar machine to render both the. They couldn't render the whole frame at one time. They had to render the first the alpha channel and the one frame and then the other half, and then they had to put it all back to. They had to comp it back together, anyway, so that that that water sleuth is.
So there's a lot of idiosyncrasies with that render that they have to look at very carefully to make sure that you know, and to go through there and make sure that they they tidy it up a little bit sometimes. You know a lot of times that you know, if you look at the original Star Wars, there's all the mats, the mats around the, what they shot for the control, control rigs were all there for a long time and so, so, anyway, so these are all the things that you know. And again, a director like Cameron maybe tempted to go back, and not only I don't know if he did this or not go back and clean some of that up. You know, let's pay I am, you know, four or five, 1015 million dollars to go back and just tune everything up a little bit so that it so the thing that we couldn't do in the early 90s are stuff that we can do now and you know if you're going to put it out, if you're going to do it once. I'm sure in the back of his head was I got to redo it and I got to make all these little things that I knew were wrong.
Right, george went a little overboard by adding new shots and people and characters and everything else, but but I think Cameron is probably more of a I want to just tune everything a little bit to make it work, to make it, to make it hold up at 4k and not in a theater when you're eating popcorn at a low resolution, underlet.
Because you know, that's really what we saw when we saw it in the theater, probably half lit. It's a half lit theater like, which means that the, the, the bulb that they were using for the projector was probably half the power at half power. That saves the money and so so it was probably half lit. It was the fifth generation if you're watching an average theater in, and you were watching it and you didn't think about these things anymore. You had never seen HD before, so you didn't, you weren't paying attention to little details, and so all of those things are. All of those things are the are the things and I don't think he I bet you he didn't change anything other than just tuning. I don't think he added characters, but I can see how he might want to get rid of a little mad line you know things he wants to clean up.
2:33:05 - Devindra Hardawar
There there's a quote from him, from James Cameron to variety in 2016, saying he said they did a wet gates 4k scan of the original negative. Can you explain? Do you have a sense of what that is? I hear that is like the cleanest way to get a negative scan.
2:33:20 - Alex Lindsay
Yeah, and I'm not a scanner scanning expert, so I would love to make something up right now. I don't know what sounds cool.
2:33:29 - Devindra Hardawar
When I'm doing a wet gate scan like yes.
2:33:32 - Alex Lindsay
I saw that go by and I was like I should research it, but we've been so talking, so much, that I didn't, I didn't.
2:33:38 - Devindra Hardawar
It's all good, but it sounds like, yeah, we're gonna have a clean scan of that movie. That's a great movie.
2:33:43 - Alex Lindsay
I actually like, I like, I like I miss a lot. I also I actually really like true lies.
2:33:49 - Devindra Hardawar
Lies is a good movie. That there will be a lot of conversations about what's in that movie, because that unfortunately, that is one of yeah, the Politics also. It's very racist in like you know, just casually sexist, but that's what I meant by the politics. Yeah, by everything.
2:34:06 - Alex Lindsay
That we have from. From that, you know, from that we use like batteries. You know, like the the batteries thing every time we run out of batteries. That came up for us. So anyway, so it was. But it's a real, it's a fun ride. You're right that a lot of things in the 90s and 80s and pretty much everything before the last 10 years is Mm-hmm. Probably needs it an edit, pass you know this.
2:34:27 - Devindra Hardawar
That's why there's content warnings about everything now in front of Disney, even including, I guess, the old episodes of Sesame Street on Mac. So you should watch Johnny.
2:34:35 - Alex Lindsay
I got excited. I grew up loving Johnny Quest. I just love. I Imagine my like when I grew up. I'm just gonna live and we're gonna travel around the world. I'm gonna do all those like.
2:34:44 - Devindra Hardawar
I just was like you did kind of do some of those things. Yeah, then.
2:34:47 - Alex Lindsay
I bought I do. That's why I bought all the Johnny quest stuff and I was, and when I started watching and I was like, oh Wow, oh, that is so inappropriate. Lately there's so much of Johnny quest, it's so inappropriate. I loved it so much.
2:35:00 - Devindra Hardawar
I mean listen every globe, prodding hero Tintin all guilty of it, it's all. It's all like a colonialist propaganda, basically, but you know it's fun, have you seen? I feel like, if you love Johnny quest and much Alex, have you ever seen the venture brothers? Oh, oh.
I boy, oh boy, if you ever have time. It was a long-running show, basically starting the early 2000s, and somehow just like kept going on cartoon network and the creators were just like left alone to do whatever they wanted. It could be years before another season hit. But it's sort of like a modern reimagining of Like, of like a Johnny quest esque family. In fact, like there is a character who's basically Johnny quest that pops up and he's Johnny quest, is an adult, as like you know, a drug-addicted person who never formed a personality. So like it's very, it's very much irreverent, very much, you know.
2:35:54 - Paris Martineau
Very silly, but.
2:35:58 - Devindra Hardawar
His name is Johnny and he goes.
2:36:02 - Alex Lindsay
Johnny quest has his dad as a scientist, and then he's got he's got a person who tends to him, that Rick, rick Bannon I think, and so, and then he's got Haji, who is his best friend that travels with him, and he's got a little dog and they and they have a jet plane and the the they go around. Usually they're going around doing something else and then something bad happens and then they solve it, you know, but there's like there was one my favorite one growing up was the mummy, and there is like they they're Egypt, they're having a good time and then a mummy escapes and then I have a mummy and it turns out that the mummy is all part of there's a, there's a. There's always like a bigger conspiracy connected.
It's like a Scooby-Doo kind of mystery thing at times, yeah except with you know, and it's, and it's. They've got lots of gadgets and and you know he's a smart kid and they and he and Haji, always, like you know, they're the ones that solve it. You know for the most part, and and so anyway. So that's the, that's the. It's kind of a kid. Kids do that thing and growing up, as I said, it was my favorite. Like three thirty in the afternoon, it was like my favorite fun show, like a really cool concept.
2:37:07 - Devindra Hardawar
I think you would get a lot of the Venture Brothers Alex, because it's also genuinely funny, like it's a comedy show, but it's also like playing on the ideas of both Johnny Quest and also old-school other Hannah Barbera stuff too. So it's really funny, especially if you know the story of Hannah.
2:37:20 - Alex Lindsay
Barbera's like it was like. That was like in my in my time. I'm dating myself, but in the in the 80s, coming home from school, hannah Barbera was.
2:37:29 - Devindra Hardawar
That's it. That's it. And Venture Brothers is a show basically made by people who have the same like things, dude. It's a lot of fun, also like pop culture. Wiser is one thing I wanted to talk about. There was a story about aces. Aces ran some special edition motherboards for neon Genesis Evangelion and they misspelled it. They misspelled the mother. It's a seven hundred dollar motherboard and and my god it's. They wrote Avengen lion, avengen lion good enough.
2:38:01 - Paris Martineau
I guess you had one job.
2:38:04 - Anthony Ha
You have even more collector item now, though like that makes them not seem more special rather than less.
2:38:09 - Devindra Hardawar
That's actually the plan. That was the plan all along to really increase the value of this collector's edition. But yeah, aces issued a statement saying that they will. Let me see here they apologize, of course, and I believe they're gonna be fixing it there. They'll provide a corrected decorative part the end users can use to replace the misprinted part.
2:38:28 - Alex Lindsay
If you counter this issue, please contact your customer service provider as as Collectors collectors not gonna do anything to it, they're gonna keep it it's. They're gonna keep it long, you know all the way. Request the part.
2:38:40 - Devindra Hardawar
Yeah that's the part, too, but also that's fun. And yeah, again, if any of you have not seen neon Genesis Evangelion, like that is Another. Another masterpiece of a show. I believe it's on Netflix right now and something that probably influenced me way too much when I was a teenager. Actually, while we are in the sphere of stuff, I wanted to take a page from one of my favorite podcasts, the pop culture happy hour. I just want to know, as we, as we round out this episode, what is making you all happy this week? What pop culture thing, any particular thing in your life. It's just bringing you a little joy, because things are pretty bad right now.
2:39:19 - Paris Martineau
I am Night Hawk cinema, since you mentioned it. I love that earlier I went there. They sometimes have these themed Movie series going on and they've been doing Nick Cage nights on Monday nights and I went to Mondays, which was a showing of the movie face-off, which is just an incredible film it really brought me Perfect 90s movie.
Yes, perfect 90s movie. And perfect 90s movie to see in a crowded theater of people just hooting and hollering every time they said something. In case you're not aware, the basic premise of the movie is that Nick Cage and John Travolta Are in kind of a cat-and-mouse game one as an FBI agent, others a terrorist. Through strange science, they end up switching faces and Every time in the movie someone said something like I've got to take his face off, everyone in the theater would get up and clap and hooting holler every time they said those are the best readings.
2:40:12 - Devindra Hardawar
Great, that's a. That's a great movie because there are things about face-off that don't quite work, but also I think it is such a great example of like pure maximalist 90s action filmmaking. Just like explosions are so good, the shootouts are so much fun, like it's yeah.
2:40:26 - Paris Martineau
It is like if John Waters was a straight man. It is that level of camp.
2:40:31 - Devindra Hardawar
It is definitely. It's like leading into camp to you love John Travolta saying. What a predicament it lives in my head Forever. Did you Paris? They did. A couple of years ago they did a. Was it like a play retelling of face-off in Roman times, as sort of a play in Prospect Park? This is a truly Brooklyn thing where it was right, basically right outside my door, but there's a beautiful building in South Prospect Park and they just staged this thing set in Roman times. It was basically a face-off retold there. I don't think it actually went anywhere. I think it was called Cage in the park and that was fun.
2:41:08 - Paris Martineau
2:41:09 - Devindra Hardawar
I should have, yeah it's like this make me miss New York. So yeah, paris, anthony I mean Anthony you know how much I miss New York.
2:41:16 - Anthony Ha
So yeah, I considered going to that screening and now I'm kicking myself for not going again, it was a hoot Back to the control, to be it.
2:41:26 - Devindra Hardawar
Well, anthony, alex, anything you want to shout out that is bringing some joy to your lives.
2:41:30 - Alex Lindsay
Yeah, I mean I think that I was amazed my, my daughter, had her first concert I talked about that a little earlier, first concert this week and you know she learned how to play the drums in like two months like like play them well enough to be that. She was probably the strongest person on stage. You know playing them, but it was the process of learning it that I was so amazed by is, in addition to practicing three hours a day, she to learn it, we got a electronic drum set and this is like a role in VX something or other electronic drum set for where she can play that she just hears the drums, all we hear is tapping.
2:42:03 - Devindra Hardawar
Because I was like there's no way it's still very loud tapping, like I've experienced those machines. But you know Like it's not like a drum set.
2:42:09 - Alex Lindsay
Yeah, it's definitely not like a drum set, you know, and, and so she's playing and you can hear just the tapping going on, and you know that she's doing it. She can hear all that stuff. But what we did is we took this. There's a program on the iPhone called Moises, and so it separates all of the the song that she was doing, just like heaven from Curran, and so One of the songs anyway and so it separates those all out into the bass and the guitar and the drums, and so now she can solo the drums or turn the drums all the way down and play with the song or just live or just play along with the drums, and that that feeds out of the iPhone into the drum set. So she's hearing it in her headphones mixed in with everything else.
As someone who's worked in the radio industry, when I first got started I worked for all these bands I watched a lot of people do all this stuff and I was like that is the most amazing way to learn is to just be able to separate all this stuff out and play along and then, and then still go and meet with, you know, instructors that make sure that she's using her hands correctly or whatever, because she's just came, but she came up to speed so fast and and she learns fast, but but I'm just saying that she in two months she was playing, you know, in a, in a, at a venue in front of people. That's cool, oh no, no, super cool, and it was a lot of hard work. But it was also just watching the technology and I just thought, you know, the thing that gets me excited about technology in general is the speed at which we can learn something, I can think of something that I want to learn and I can absorb so much information and watching that get converted to Actually a physical ability. You know, I just thought, I just sometimes I because I, you know, I have a firm belief that you know things get dark, but if we really think about it, it's never been better Like in a, you know, in a macro level, sure, back ten years, twenty years, fifty years.
2:43:52 - Devindra Hardawar
That's like the one candle that's holding hope in me.
2:43:55 - Alex Lindsay
You got to keep on coming back to that because it's really easy, because the news that comes in makes us more and more upset you, it's really easy to get dark about what's happening. But but really, if you look at a macro level of the whole world of where we are, we go through little divots but the overall trajectory is always up.
2:44:13 - Devindra Hardawar
You know, I get that from where we were, you know, at any given time before that, and so I mean you kind of notice that just by watching old media to like even stuff from like the 80s and 90s be like oh man, culturally, how did we? How was that?
2:44:24 - Alex Lindsay
okay, okay, well, yeah how do we think that that was okay, or how do we, how did this work, or whatever, and you know, and I think we're more conscious to it now. But but when I look at again, I'm always fascinated by the ability of people to learn quickly, you know, and be able to absorb. I always. I almost created a company called B2, b2 12 media based on Matrix. You know, I need a, I need a, I need a program for a B2 12. Someone already thought of that, but that's like the goal, like what I'm working is like how do you do this as fast as possible? And and I feel like it's when I saw that, I felt like that was a step in that. That's cool.
2:45:01 - Devindra Hardawar
That's cool. I'm a former drummer actually I used to drum in like high school and middle school. So I'm like I am tempted now that Maybe the kids are in daycare and like I may have a little more free time. I want one of those electronic drum sets. But also I have VR headsets and I know that there are a bunch of mixed reality companies. They're now doing things where you they can like overlay the almost like a tar hero, overlay like the incoming tracks and let you like hit in in sync like has your daughter tried that, alex?
2:45:29 - Alex Lindsay
She hasn't she? I have all the tools to do that. Yeah, she just was cranking away. I kind of Just feed fuel towards her direction. She plays guitar, bass, keyboard and drums was new for her in the last two months and which is not bad for 14. So the but I just keep on throwing logs on the fire and I try to stay out of it, stay away from the moving parts, like just just keep on giving her what this is good parenting advice, thank you.
Just keep on, just keep on. Just here, let me give you the tools that you need, and just yeah.
2:46:02 - Devindra Hardawar
I'm sort of especially for my daughter. I'm like I'm looking at like what she's into, like okay, how can I help? I'm gonna just say, yeah, push to keep it going, anthony. Anything you want to highlight in your life right now.
2:46:13 - Anthony Ha
Um, I mean, this is probably something that a lot of people have been checking out, but this week I was rewatching the first season of Loki and watching the second season and I feel like season, you know, it's one of those things that like it feels so stupid to be defending, like this giant entertainment corporation. That is gonna be fine, they're gonna be fine, but, like, at a time where you know, obviously there's a lot of negative headlines and rest of like what is the future of Marvel and anything that's probably healthy, and it's probably healthy to have a, you know, movie ecosystem that's less dependent on superhero blockbusters, despite all that macro stuff, it's nice to kind of come back like, oh yeah, sometimes they make really good fun stuff, and I mean both. I think the second season is not quite as good as the first season, but I think the Loki shows, despite Definite problems in the writing, I think are a lot of fun and and they've been making me happy this week.
2:47:02 - Devindra Hardawar
They're good, I mean they're, they're fun, especially after I mean, I just saw the marbles and I'd review down my movie podcast the film cast. That's a lot of fun. It did remind me of like a time when, like, oh man, we didn't have to worry about like the crazy world building of all the Marvel stuff. You could just like sit back and enjoy these characters having fun reinventing themselves. So cool. I'm really digging Loki too, anthony, so I'm glad you're liking it. I want to just highlight a couple things on my end, and specifically I think we are in a really great time for animation, because I am a huge fuck, a Scott Pilgrim fan and that Scott Pilgrim takes off show. That's on Netflix right now, which I was not super excited for for a while. I was like, why are we? The comics are great, the movie is incredible, the Edgar Wright movie. Why would we revisit this? What are we doing here? And all I will say is they are not redoing Scott Pilgrim. It is something different, something unique. It's a remix, not a rehash, I'd say, and it's beautiful too. It's beautiful art, yeah, from the, the anime studio, the devil man, crybaby, I believe. So like it looks great. Adam on a Gucci did the music you know like with like good people, so like just the vibes of it are really great and it's one of those things where it's like it's kind of a miracle this exists. You know, like the book was great. The book was like one of those like mid-2000s Things I think is a great exploration of life in your 20s and it hit me certainly at the right time where I was. And then the, the movie, is one of those things where I think that is one Of my favorite movies of all time are partially because I was at San Diego Comic Con when that debuted and like Crazy stuff happened during that. Like just seeing that screening that was like one of those things when Comic Con was to, hollywood was taking for Comic Con. But anyway, I love the movie, I love the. The the book and the anime series is really great too.
Also want to shout out two other things. Pluto is an anime series on on Netflix as well and it is an adaptation of the Naoki Urasawa manga and set in the world of Astro Boy. So if you remember Astro Boy from Osama Tezuka, it is a modern reinterpretation actually not quite modern, but like a Mature reinterpretation of Astro Boy that focuses on a murder mystery. Someone is killing the seven most capable artificial intelligent robots in the world and it's a murder mystery trying to figure that out. And Astro Boy does appear. It's like it's such a mature, well-written show that is also, I think, has Great like background trappings, because it's also a world where people are trying to coexist with robots and some people don't believe robots have rights. Some people don't believe robots should, should be equivalent to humans or anything. So if you like the setting of Blade Runner or goes to the shell or parts of the Matrix or something too, I think there's a lot for you there. It's also a really powerful anti-war series, which is a really and a fascinating thing to see right now. So, yeah, check out Pluto as well.
Blue eyes samurai is my final recommendation. That is a fantastic show, just like a straight-up fun anime samurai show. That's on Netflix right now and the action is good. The writing is good. Again, tremendous animation. That's CG animation on Netflix, but really, really good stuff. So, yeah, those are my recommendations, folks, and let's just take a little break here. Do we have anything on the same altman thing?
2:50:25 - Paris Martineau
Because we have hit eight o'clock now and we've hit eight o'clock, which leads me to believe that, I mean, either it's happened just right now or we haven't heard anything, or that Nothing is happening or nothing is happening. Five more minutes, we'll give you five more minutes. We can vamp.
2:50:45 - Alex Lindsay
I'd tell you one one that I, my family, what we do is as a family we got kind of into this with COVID, is that at about I don't know 7, 30, 8 o'clock at night, we usually watch a show and we're what we're just winding our way through a Show like, and it's just we start at the beginning and we watch all of it. And the one that I was really surprised at, that we all really enjoyed, was Hannah, the TV show, the Movie.
2:51:09 - Devindra Hardawar
That's interesting. That movie was amazing so yeah, there's like three.
2:51:14 - Alex Lindsay
The movie was really good, the but Hannah, the TV shows with three seasons and it's designed as three seasons. So it's you know, I would you know, I think that, but the whole family enjoyed, enjoyed it. I wasn't ready to.
For the whole family and well, and like the one that, that that I also. I love it when someone designs it, whether it's, you know, designs that we're gonna do three seasons, we're not gonna try to stretch this out forever. Another good one like that was like penny dreadful, which I'm not watching with my kids, so so, but the when they're older, but I just love. I loved penny dreadful and really good vibe, penny dreadful.
Yeah, yeah, I love that show open. I really get into opens and closes of movies because I used to have to work on some of that. The open firm, penny dreadful, is just mass, a masterpiece. You know there's a certain things that you look at like the the kingdom has like one of the best opens as far as like, how much, how much information can I jam into two and a half minutes? But penny dreadful, it was just this. The artistry of it was and it was telling you a whole story about all the people that were involved In it and but it was really good, really good film I, really good series. But we yes, we kind of wind our way through. Sometimes we just get bored. We're like, oh, and usually it's because Shows become too drunk, there's too much drama. Like there's too much, yeah, personal drama. At some point we they made it into a state. We stopped having a show about whatever we came for, we, and we now have a soap opera and everyone we, that's usually when we quit.
2:52:46 - Devindra Hardawar
I feel like that happened to killing Eve, which was really fun first few seasons and then kind of kind of devolved.
2:52:51 - Alex Lindsay
I'm with the Ted lasso to like we were kind of like oh yeah, and it just. It was so the first this season was so good and by the end of the second season you're like Kind of I don't know what's happening here.
2:53:01 - Devindra Hardawar
I do like the idea, though, of having a family viewing session, because my kids are five and one and a half, so we're not quite there yet, but I'm doing nightly like gaming time with my daughter, so I'm totally doing the indoctrination to the world of RPGs and Mario, and she is. We've just started Mario RPG, which is the perfect combination of all those things, and yeah, yeah.
2:53:24 - Alex Lindsay
For something to play that's perfect, something about it that we all have to agree on it. Like we did, alias, so we did.
2:53:29 - Devindra Hardawar
Aliases good, so good.
2:53:31 - Alex Lindsay
It was start to finish, so and and what happens is when you watch it every night, you really can keep up with all the subplots you know, and so in a matter and everything else, and and it gets into it. And then we did that with Alias, we did it with heroes, we did it with the second See the version of heroes too but it was yeah, yeah. And then we did it with what was it? It was an AI crime, like it was the Jonathan Nolan one, yeah, yeah. I don't know why it slips my mind because I watched so much of it, but it was. It was the one with the guy from lost.
Yes, Was, it was no, it was no, no, no, it's Jonathan Nolan. Person of interest person of interest.
2:54:18 - Devindra Hardawar
Yeah, the bad guy from lost was the main guy, one of the guys in that show.
2:54:23 - Alex Lindsay
Yeah, yeah, so the um, so anyway, yeah, but so we watched person of interest was like I was like five or six seasons. That was like a you know, it's like a solid half a year, or something like that, of watching it or something. So you feel like you know everybody, like you go have dinner with them at that point. But there's something about that in that, that view that you know there, anyway, I, if you have a family that are all close to one.
2:54:46 - Devindra Hardawar
My wife has just started doing moon lighting, which is now on Hulu with all the original music, and that show is so good, oh my god.
2:54:53 - Alex Lindsay
I was like we looked at the open moon lighting and we were like I loved it when I was walking.
2:54:57 - Devindra Hardawar
Yeah it's just fast, because, especially now, because we're all very sad about Bruce Willis and like he just can't work anymore. He's going through medical difficulties, but to see him in his prime and to be young and beautiful and charming, like it is so much fun.
2:55:11 - Alex Lindsay
Yeah, yeah, I tried to get them into Miami Vice, but there was just no. That's a advice when I was.
2:55:20 - Anthony Ha
I mean to imagine like kids watching like the full runs of like non serial, serialized, just like purely episodic shows for me.
2:55:27 - Devindra Hardawar
I mean it's the office man, I love it.
2:55:30 - Alex Lindsay
I love, yeah, I love non serial show, like I like a lawn order. You know I watched it I don't know my wife when I used to watch it, when we first were dating and we would you just always be able to sit down and watch A lot order. You didn't have to know anything about the past. You know learning about the future and it wasn't. You know, you just watch the show and it was very formulaic. Something bad's gonna happen. I know I was talking to.
It was one time where justine Ezraic was on. I justine was on lawn order and I remember, yeah, and I was trying to get her like there was a Steelers Ron playing Sunday night football or Monday night football on, you know, and I was like, hey, I see she's tweeted something from New York. I like we're both in New York, let's go watch a stealer game. And she's like I said, what are you doing? She's like, oh, I've been dead all day Laying, you know, and but I love the fact that it was very formulaic and it was, I don't know. For me it was. There was some closure to that of not having to feel like I missed an episode and now I have to go back and watch three other ones. I can remember who did what.
2:56:27 - Devindra Hardawar
There's something, there's something like beautiful about that. But just checking in, checking in on the Sam Altman news. It is now eight or seven pm.
2:56:35 - Paris Martineau
We've not seen any new updates. People on the ground and it seems like nothing is happening. Is what's happening?
2:56:43 - Devindra Hardawar
we're waiting for the Pope smoke.
2:56:46 - Paris Martineau
Basically, we are all posted outside the Vatican. We're like, let's get that white.
2:56:53 - Alex Lindsay
2:56:54 - Paris Martineau
Whenever a new CEO of open AI is chosen, they send out like a purple flash but whatever the AI chooses, one like in the future when the AI chooses you know that's really.
2:57:05 - Alex Lindsay
They should have chat GPT. Just referee this is true, explain all the things that happened and everything else and get it. I'm sure that somebody there Did ask chat GPT Situation. It probably gave it some crazy idea like just what everybody knows, shipping just man.
2:57:21 - Devindra Hardawar
Well, you know what? I'm sure Leo and crew and other twitch shows will be chatting about Whatever is happening at open AI next week. For now, though, folks, can you let us know when can people find you on the internet these days? Paris, what's up?
2:57:35 - Paris Martineau
You can follow me on Twitter at Paris Martino or at Paris NYC on blue sky, and tune into this week in Google where I'm a co-host, and we'll definitely be talking about whatever the resolution of this. You know, altman thing is on on the show this week.
2:57:52 - Anthony Ha
Yeah, anthony, the easiest way to follow me is I'm at Anthony ha on threads and blue sky. I'm also that on Twitter, but don't really tweet anymore.
2:58:02 - Devindra Hardawar
Stay away from Twitter. Yes, alex. So where can people find you? I'm sure people know, but Well, I'm office hours.
2:58:09 - Alex Lindsay
That global is is what I do every morning, so we do a morning show or we just talk about media production, and so you can find that as office hours global on YouTube, or you can go to office hours dot global. If you sign up there You'll you'll get a email every single day telling you what we're gonna talk about every single day, and then I'm also on Mac break, so that's so. I'm sure that hopefully by Tuesday We'll have something to talk about To figure out what actually this all means.
2:58:33 - Devindra Hardawar
Yeah, I thought we were gonna be talking more about Thanksgiving, but no, we were just too busy with actual, actual news happening. Folks, you can find me writing about tech at engadget, just reviewed the PlayStation portal I'm off for a couple weeks, but I also do the engadget podcast and you can find me talk about movies and TV on the film cast at the film cast Dot com. Thank you so much, folks. This was a great group and I hope to chat with you all again. Another twit is in the can.