Scott Johnson, Justin Young and Tom Merritt kick around Google’s new timeline feature for maps that shows you exactly what it knows about where you live work and travel. Plus the ethics of road-testing car hacks.
On DTNS, you hear in-depth, reasoned discussion of the day’s most interesting tech stories from Tom Merritt and his esteemed guests. You get research, insight, and analysis.
Now, finally, there’s equal time for the other side.
That’s right, this is your stop for shallow, reckless rambling on a selection of those same stories. Welcome to the Weekly Tech Views Blog, where, at times, up to 12% of what you read could be factual. No, WTVB doesn’t roll off the tongue like DTNS; frankly, it sounds like the call letters for a 5,000 watt radio station in Tateville, Kentucky (WTVB – We’re Tateville’s Best!). If I gave it some more thought, I could probably come up with something better. But, as you’ll discover should you decide to read on, “more thought” is not my highest priority.
For the Week of July 13 – 17, 2015 – And, as a premiere issue bonus, some of the previous week as well. Huzzah.
For much of their product line, Logitech is changing their name to Logi, which is huge news, in that it provides new, exciting territory to be explored by those who love to debate the pronunciation of GIF.
Amazon celebrated their 20th anniversary with Prime Day, a day they claimed would have more discounts than Black Friday. I assume this means customers were able to relive the treasured Black Friday tradition of–for the rare worthwhile item–starting to click their mouse three minutes before the scheduled sale start time so that when the precise second strikes, they may, if the gods are smiling on them, be informed that the item has sold out but they have been granted a coveted spot on the Wait List. Certainly, like waiting for a lottery drawing, half the fun is the exciting anticipation, the “what-if?”, the dreams you dream while your constantly clicking finger cramps and gnarls like that of a fairy tale witch.
Facebook‘s head of security called for Adobe to announce an end-of-life date for Flash. An Adobe representative reportedly responded by saying Flash is still extremely functional, a valued and vital part of our internet lives, and how about you guys at Facebook just worry about why the sea lion in the photo my wife posted from our trip to the zoo keeps getting tagged as me?
Comcast is starting a streaming game service with Electronic Arts. How enjoyable an experience this will be–using phones or tablets as controllers–is up in the air, but what is certain is that I would pay significant money to watch former Comcast customer Veronica Belmont Twitch stream Cable Crush Saga, where points are awarded for lining up matching customer service reps. Get five in a row and their headsets tighten until their heads explode, at which point they are replaced by Tier 2 reps. There are infinite levels, and you do not, of course, ever win the game.
A Saudi computer–the Shaheen II–entered the Top 500 Supercomputer list at #7, the first time a Middle East computer has been in the top ten. If you stop to think about this, one point in particular really jumps out at you: THERE’S A TOP 500 SUPERCOMPUTER LIST! This list has existed for twenty-two years, apparently, and this is the first I’m hearing about it. Is the AP involved? A committee of former supercomputer programmers? Have I been missing playoffs, bowl games… The International Supercomputing Conference Championship Game Sponsored by Tostitos (“Tostitos–Not silicon-germanium, but still a great chip!”)?
Look, DTNS is a great show, but obviously a format change is in order. I have heard ZERO listeners call in to complain about the Cray Titan XK7 Opteron 6274 being ranked ahead of the IBM Sequoia BlueGene/Q Power BQC, claiming that the Titan’s narrow half a petaflop win was definitely a result of an easier number-crunching schedule.
One feature of the wearable Kickstarter product Doppel is to keep you focused at times you might be inclined to doze off–boring meetings, dinner with your spouse’s friends, an opera–by issuing rapid taps to your arm. This could replace the less-portable, occasion-specific device many of us have–the CINDY (Constantly Interrupting Niece Disturbing You). CINDY is typically triggered after Thanksgiving dinner, once you position yourself on a recliner in front of the Cowboys blowout. As your eyes begin to close and sleep threatens, CINDY, like the Doppel, initiates an insistent tapping on your arm. If this fails to rouse you, audio prompts are activated: “Hey, guess what?… Hey guess what?…Hey, Uncle Mike, guess what?” I have not fallen asleep at a family gathering in three years.
A study claims that Twitter and Facebook are used as news sources by 63% of their users. I’m inclined to buy that, but then I remember that I know people who consider “one of the girls who sang the Nicki Minaj song on Ellen just had a birthday” as news.
Microsoft will be throwing Windows 10 launch parties in thirteen major cities around the world, so expect Harry Potter book release-levels of excitement–parents letting their kids stay up late to be one of the first to claim one of the OS-wielding USB drives piled high on folding tables, spirited discussions of which new desktop themes will be available, and of course everyone will be dressed as their favorite Microsoft icon, presumably 99% Satya Nadellas, and, off in a corner, drinking fruit punch, a subdued handful of Clippies. Refreshments will be provided, and in keeping with the spirit of the new mandatory Windows updates, attendees will eat a slice of pizza and drink a cup of punch whether they want them or not.
And finally, Apple announced the new iPod Touch this week at an event featuring appearances by Pete from PR and a Whole Foods veggie tray.
There you have it. One down. Back next week with more of… this.
Patrick Norton and Tom Merritt discuss Microsoft’s new policy to force updates on Windows 10 Home users and get Patrick’s early thoughts on living in Windows 10. +Len Peralta will upstage all that with another awesome in-show illustration.
Darren Kitchen and Tom Merritt discuss the week’s portentious hacks and outages including The US OPM, New York Stock Exchange and United Airlines. IS this cybergeddon? Plus Len Peralta illustrates the show.