Stuart Langridge, Jono Bacon, and Jeremy Garcia present Bad Voltage, in which we begin a new series, the world is under lockdown, and:
- [00:01:40] And Finally: a medical fetish site donates its stock of scrubs after being contacted by the NHS, cops in Hamilton bust a cocaine dealer for doing “non essential business” during the coronavirus lockdown, more cops bust a man for teaching his dog to drive, and don’t use shredded T-shirts as toilet paper…
- [00:05:47] News: the BBC suggest that the compulsory licence fee could be replaced by a broadband levy, Twitter are removing a whole bunch of misinformation but Ben Thomson at Stratechery has issues, and yet another Zoom issue, this time that they’ve misleadingly claimed that their meetings are end-to-end encrypted although the UK government don’t seem to mind…
- [00:16:40] Main discussion: What’s the role of technology, open source, open data, and the community in a large-scale crisis scenario? Are there useful ways to contribute, or is it best to just stay out of the way? Can, and should, you get involved?
Come chat with us and the community in our Slack channel via https://badvoltage-slack.herokuapp.com/!
News music: Long Live Blind Joe by Robbero, used with attribution.
Stuart Langridge, Jono Bacon, and Jeremy Garcia present Bad Voltage, in which we are all waaaaay more invested in email than certain companies would like us to be, and:
- In this episode we discuss Superhuman, a new email app. Jono, the email power user’s email power user, has been getting to grips with it and is frankly a bit of a fan. Jeremy and Stuart are perhaps a bit more sceptical of some of the claims that it makes. So, we drill down into it; what does it do, how does it work, who needs it… and what does this mean for the development of design-led apps as a whole? Is this a move in a good direction? All the people trying to claim that email is dead so you use their proprietary system instead… are they wrong? Is this the way to prove that? And why didn’t Gmail do it already?
Come chat with us and the community in our Slack channel via https://badvoltage-slack.herokuapp.com/!
Stuart Langridge, Jono Bacon, and Jeremy Garcia present Bad Voltage, in which is discussed the prodigal’s opinions of what we got up to while he was prodigaling, the Wurzels get a second look-in, and:
Come chat with us and the community in our Slack channel via https://badvoltage-slack.herokuapp.com/!
Stuart Langridge, Jono Bacon, and special guest Jorge Castro present Bad Voltage, in which the nature of purchasing goods is discussed.
There seem to have recently been various examples of companies selling a thing and then exerting control over it after they’ve sold it. Sonos speakers have “recycle mode”, HP printer cartridges in their “Instant Ink” programme stop working if you unsubscribe, and farmers buy 30-year-old tractors rather than new ones because they’re still fixable in the field. But are these actually examples of a trend for the worse, or is this not actually the problem that it’s being painted as? Is this just how capitalism works, and is this how we want it to work? We’ll dive into this, from a few different perspectives, and see where we end up…
Stuart Langridge, Jono Bacon, and Jeremy Garcia present Bad Voltage, in which what will happen in 2020 is laid out for your consideration with perfect precision. Yes, it’s the predictions episode! This is what will happen in the next year:
- Slack will be purchased by either Microsoft, WebEx (Cisco) or Zoom. (Jeremy thinks the same, but by Salesforce, Google, or Amazon, in that order)
- There will have been no convictions under the CCPA by the end of 2020
- It’s the end of cookie warnings, as the EU ePrivacy stuff actually starts to kick in
- Bonuses: Epic store releases on Linux; it’ll be common to have drone displays instead of fireworks
- Benioff leaves as CEO at Salesforce
- Microsoft, Amazon, and Google will all offer quantum computing services for their clouds, which will not be in preview but will actually be in beta or final
- Amazon will release a color kindle
- Bonuses: Canonical will get acquired; Playstation 5 will launch to very positive press reviews; Facebook Spaces will continue to be something people don’t care about; Dorsey steps down as Twitter CEO
- Disney acquires EA, or Microsoft acquires Activision Blizzard
- Just a few short years after Ubuntu pulled the cord on convergence, a phone of that nature is released by a major manufacturer
- Uber shutters Uber Eats
- Bonuses: There will be no level 5 autonomous cars in 2020
Stuart Langridge, Jono Bacon, and Jeremy Garcia present Bad Voltage, in which a tenth of a point is more important than one might think it is, Mother Shipton is turning in her grave, and:
- [00:02:10] A year ago we predicted everything that would happen in technology in 2019. Now… we revisit those predictions and see how we did. No spoilers, but we will say: when we return in 2020 and give new predictions for the upcoming year… we’ll probably do better. In advance of us doing so in the New Year, why not hop over to community.badvoltage.org to tell us what you think will happen?
- [00:50:30] And it’s goodbye from us for 2019! With some brief diversions into Craigslist getting its first official app after 24 years and a brief check in on the Ubports Ubuntu phone project
Stuart Langridge, Jono Bacon, and Jeremy Garcia present Bad Voltage, in which we are very different on flights, Jono knows about the Bills, and:
- [00:01:30] The .org registry has been sold to a private equity firm, and there is a whole lot of suspicion about how that deal went down. We’ll unpack it a bit.
- [00:15:00] Google release Stadia, their streaming gaming platform, to early adopters. Reception was… mixed. Here are some thoughts.
Lex Luthorinvents a low-poly truck. What’s the market for the Cybertruck? Are we going to buy one?
- [00:49:25] The launch of Disney+, and their market. Disney now own rather a lot of video — their own films, but Marvel, Star Wars, Pixar, Hulu, Touchstone — and will this make Disney+ the thing that people buy instead of Netflix?
Stuart Langridge, Jono Bacon, and Jeremy Garcia present Bad Voltage, in which Jono and Jeremy are coming to you direct from the Open Source Summit in France, the word for “full of incitement” is not “inciteful”, Stuart, and:
- [00:01:55] Facebook News and what it should include and what not: what responsibility, if any, does Facebook’s newly-proposed News tab have to choose the journalistic contributions that go into it?
- [00:25:05] Using “AI” in job interviews and whether this is a good idea
- [00:33:30] Disney seem to be stopping good older films from going into cinemas
Stuart Langridge and Jeremy Garcia present Bad Voltage, in which the summer break is over except that Jono is temporarily away, free software has some problems, and:
- [00:01:45] Is the definition of free software still fit for purpose? We’ve got companies trying to solve the problem of “we pay to build a thing then AWS get paid for it” and people trying to solve the problem of “we sweat to build a thing then ICE get to use it”, and both groups are doing so by looking at what the goals of free software are today, and whether current free software licences are still a good way of achieving those current goals. Matthew Garrett wrote some thoughts about this, and we have Opinions too, as we suspect will you. Give us your ideas on this topic at community.badvoltage.org.
- [00:23:02] There is speculation that the UK government are offering up quotes to the media which use the key words from negative stories in a new context, in an attempt to push those negative stories down the search rankings for those words. Real life SEO to get bad stories out of the news. Andy Maturin flags this for a search for “boris johnson model” (attempting to push this story down the rankings in favour of this story)
- [00:30:50] Gnome are being sued over a software patent (“a method that involves capturing a bunch of images, filtering them based on a topic, theme or individual, and wirelessly transmitting the filtered images to another device”) which Shotwell allegedly violates
- [00:40:08] The dating app maker, Match, are being sued by the US FTC for fraud for allegedly knowingly profiting from and sometimes augmenting the flood of fake profiles on their dating sites
- [00:45:45] More on Google’s determination to have a robot voice ring up restaurants and make bookings by talking to a real person: “Reserve With Google” seems to be the latest iteration of this plan, and it doesn’t seem to work all that well
Stuart Langridge, Jono Bacon, and Jeremy Garcia present Bad Voltage, in which we h4XX0r the Dark Web to pwn your s3ns3s, other people are inexplicably less annoyed about this than Stuart is, and:
- [00:01:15] After a terrorist murdered 22 people and injured 24 others in the mass shooting in El Paso in 2019, police said that they are “reasonably confident” that the shooter published an anti-Hispanic, anti-immigrant manifesto published on 8chan, a messageboard heavily linked to alt-right propaganda and mass shootings. Cloudflare then dropped their support for 8chan, refusing to provide them with DDOS protection.
In the midst of this, Kevin Roose, a tech writer for the NYT, said: there’s a big, interesting debate here about which layers of the internet should be responsible for banning extreme content. And we agree. So, this is that interesting debate: which levels should be banning stuff like this? ISPs, literally the provision of an internet service? Facebook and other end-user applications? Cloudflare and other infrastricture providers? And what justifies a decision to ban? Government regulation? Corporate PR? The CEO’s personal opinions? Is there a risk that challenging the orthodoxy results in banning by the mob, or is that just a fig-leaf used by those who want to keep their awful opinions? A bit of all of that, perhaps: we dig into the whole topic from a few different angles.
Stuart Langridge, Jono Bacon, and Jeremy Garcia present Bad Voltage, in which there might be toilet paper conferences, you don’t know, and:
- [00:01:15] What makes a good conference? We’re digging into this in some depth; what makes a conference fun, or useful, or beneficial, or all of the above, and what stops it from being those things? What’s the point of conferences anyway? A wide-ranging discussion trying to work out what people are doing well, and not so well.
- [00:01:00] There’s a new site launched calling for a ban on facial recognition. Should it be banned? There are dangers here, but perhaps the genie is out of the bottle on this one; what needs to be done?
- [00:30:30] More than 1,000 Android apps harvest data even after you deny permissions. iOS has similar issues. Is this just a bug, or a symptom of a more deep-seated malaise? And what, if anything, can and should be done about it?
- [00:44:13] British Airways faces record £183m fine for data breach; it’s the biggest penalty from the UK’s ICO ever
- [00:47:40] Someone writes a bit of software called “DeepNude” which takes a picture of women (only) and fakes a nude image of them, in a catastrophic misreading of the room. We tell them: don’t do this sort of thing, and then answer a question asked, which was: does this water down the power of blackmailers?
Stuart Langridge, Jono Bacon, and Jeremy Garcia present Bad Voltage, in which we only get the bad bits of Neuromancer, apparently “stank” is a noun, and:
- [00:01:13] More and more companies are going for some sort of “open core” business model approach to software distribution: parts of the software are open and parts are closed, or there’s a licence which prohibits its use by cloud providers without paying, or you have to pay for the branded version. We take a look into the different approaches here, and what it means for open source in general and the direction of the industry
- [00:27:50] This past weekend has seen a bit of dancing about whether Ubuntu will drop 32-bit libraries from the archive, ending up with a statement from Canonical about it saying they aren’t going to (and Valve have responded saying that they’ll continue to support Steam on Ubuntu, although that was after we recorded the show)
- [00:44:17] Facebook have released a cryptocurrency, Libra. What’s the deal here? We have some thoughts, not surprisingly
Stuart Langridge, Jono Bacon, and Jeremy Garcia present Bad Voltage, in which Stuart gets the episode number wrong, the ghosts of KWebStat and Jokosher are unearthed, and:
- [00:01:52] Github Sponsors: a new donations programme from Github where people can give money to support an open source project. A good idea? Well, maybe. We have some thoughts on this latest attempt to bring money into the open source ecosystem, and whether they’re doing better than Tidelift or OpenCollective or any of the others
- [00:21:40] Stadia: Google’s upcoming streaming video gaming service (or possibly a terrible hatchback car from the 1980s). Are we on board? Or are there problems? Well, maybe a bit of both. Bringing the subscription model to gaming excites a lot of comment as a concept, and whether Google are the right people to do it is also a concern
- [00:34:57] Sign in with Apple: Apple’s new rival to signing in with Google or Facebook. Privacy preserving? Yes, at least partially. Mandatory for anyone using anyone else’s single sign on? Also yes. So, we are on the fence a bit here; time to dig into it, and what the iceberg is that this is the tip of as integration between services becomes more critical and harder to get away from
Stuart Langridge, Jono Bacon, and Jeremy Garcia present Bad Voltage, in which there is charity and there is hope but there is not a lot of faith, and:
- [00:02:50] Lenovo are apparently making a Thinkpad-brand foldable PC next year. We have Thoughts, not surprisingly
- [00:08:40] Uber finally do their IPO, which manages to seriously underperform expectations and yet still be the 9th biggest US IPO ever
- [00:11:10] Someone comes up with a worrying Whatsapp remote exploit — dial a call which would then buffer overflow the target and install software on it. It went unmentioned in the release notes, although maybe that’s a good thing because people don’t install security updates?
- [00:13:50] Drinking six or more coffees a day can be detrimental to your health. In other news, a bear prays, and the Pope was seen heading into the woods with a roll of toilet paper
- [00:15:20] Our main feature: lots of people think it’s unfair if their open source software is bundled up and sold by someone putting no effort into it. This is certainly legal, but there seem to be more developers who are disillusioned about this, both for personal projects and in large enterprises. Historically the response has been: that’s legal, so you just have to live with it. But as the open source world has changed, is that still a good answer? Maybe those developers do need to live with it, but perhaps there should be a better explanation as to why living with it is actually better in the long term? Or maybe the open source pitch itself should change, or the world should: can we do better than dismissing people’s concerns rather than helping them understand?
Stuart Langridge, Jono Bacon, and special guest presenter Jorge Castro present Bad Voltage, in which apparently reading A Song of Ice and Fire is as bad as being a Crossfit person or using Arch, Jorge refuses to publicly state just how many HDMI devices he has, and:
- [00:02:30] The Sony PlayStation 5 is coming. In 2020, probably. What’s going to be good, and what’s going to be less good?
- [00:17:40] Employee wellness programs apparently may not work: “The study concluded that the program didn’t seem to have much effect on total medical spending, employee productivity, or health behavior in the first year.
- [00:24:50] Is “996”, the idea that workers should work 9am-9pm six days a week, a good idea? Jack Ma of Alibaba says it is. Workers in China disagree. We have thoughts.
- [00:35:20] In light of the UK’s upcoming online harms” strategy document and porn blocking plans, how do you monitor or control your children’s internet access and screen time, or do you not? Do you block the things your kids can see, and if so how? Limit their time online, and how? Or none of the above?
- [00:49:50] Cloudflare plan to offer a free VPN for everyone.
The Bad Voltage live show, performed at SCALE 17x! From Pasadena, California, on Friday 8th March 2019, this is Bad Voltage Live! Warning: contains advanced suit technology™. Featuring special guests Erica Brescia, Corey Quinn, Mary Thengvall, Hannah Anderson, Alan Pope, Ilan Rabinovitch, and Matthew “dotwaffle” Walster!
There’s no audio track for this one, because it’s a stage show, but there is video at YouTube!
Stuart Langridge and Jeremy Garcia present Bad Voltage, in which Jono is at death’s door and not present, Stuart mixes the show and therefore any complaints should be directed to him (and obviously these will make Jono feel good about himself), and:
- [00:1:20] A short review of SCaLE17x and what we liked about it, along with some words on the mighty Bad Voltage live show, coming soon to a podcast and video site near you!
- [00:8:55] Apparently Google Docs is the new place that teens at school chat, because they can see it and not their other apps (thankyou schultzer for the suggestion!)
- [00:14:19] Beto O’Rourke, prospective candidate for president of the USA, was in legendary hacker group the Cult of the Dead Cow in his youth
- [00:18:51] A major international bank accidentally published a private package of their own to the public npm registry and then sent DMCA takedown notices to Amazon and Cloudflare for hosting “stolen code”
- [00:25:25] YouTube, repeatedly accused of not doing enough to limit the spread of propaganda and ghoulish exploitation of tragedy, outline some of what they did after the Christchurch mosque mass shootings to stop uploads of videos
- [00:35:55] Facebook backtracks after removing adverts from US presidential candidate Elizabeth Warren calling for Facebook to be broken up. A more nuanced story than it may at first appear, and with ramifications for journalism and how it’s done
- [00:45:00] 5G. It’s coming, apparently. We’d like to look into it in more detail, after a suggestion by Greg Lowe. But… what do you, the community, want to know about it? Give us your questions for research and opinions!
Stuart Langridge, Jono Bacon, and Jeremy Garcia present Bad Voltage, in which we declare a moratorium on social media, there is Tinder but for livestock, and:
- [00:03:00] Google may be killing the back button in Android Q
- [00:10:40] Project Alias: block your home assistant from listening to you, and make your own custom commands
- [00:19:00] Marriott get hacked, let you fill in your personal info into a web form to see if your personal information was compromised, sigh
- [00:20:50] Social networking: more on the techlash, and the UK Parliament says Facebook have been acting like “digital gangsters”, and addictive technologies. Meanwhile, Reddit users are apparently less valuable than any other social network
- [00:43:50] Google Maps just accidentally exposed Taiwan’s secret missile sites
Stuart Langridge, Jono Bacon, and Jeremy Garcia present Bad Voltage, in which we take ourselves up on a challenge we set a couple of episodes ago.
Social media. There’s pretty wide agreement that there are issues with it; that it fosters divisiveness and a lack of nuance, it amplifies the narcissistic, that it’s easy to harass and bully people, that there are ways in which it’s had a detrimental impact on society. But is that the fault of the social media networks, or the fault of humanity who just didn’t have an audible voice before? And if that’s the case… what can be done about it? Anything?
We have some thoughts, and have been reading up about social media, engagement, and the “techlash” more generally, and the motives behind some of these actions. So, why’s it happening, and can it be fixed?
Stuart Langridge and Jeremy Garcia present an abbreviated Bad Voltage, in the lead up to Bad Voltage Live at SCaLE in Pasadena, California on March 8th! With some thoughts on what makes a good conference, some confusion as to what the hell Essential are doing releasing a paid-for email app, and a slightly different take on Apple’s Facetime bug where at least one of us thinks that maybe it’s been blown a little out of proportion.
Stuart Langridge, Jono Bacon, and Jeremy Garcia present Bad Voltage, in which we look forward for the year and describe what we think will happen in tech in 2019! Our predictions are:
- These companies will IPO: Uber (the largest IPO ever), Peloton, Lyft, Slack, Cloudflare
- Netflix will start selling films/programmes for a one-off cost, not part of your Netflix subscription, a la, Amazon Prime, or…
- Netflix will launch a streaming gaming service
- Jim Whitehurst will be announced as IBM CEO
- Zuckerberg will no longer be Facebook CEO (half a point of whining for this), and Sheryl Sandberg will be CEO
- Facebook Spaces will continue to be a thing nobody cares about
- A CEO will be fired for a data breach
- The world finally embraces USB-C
- The first high-profile deepfake video (not porn; politics or celebrity somehow) will happen and mislead people
- The world will not care at all about folding phones
- The US will pass at least one major nationwide piece of privacy legislation (akin to the GDPR or similar)
- The US goes into a recession (by someone’s definition, for example two consecutive quarters of decline, or the NBER’s definition)
- Foldable phones will outsell true 5G phones, despite the latter getting much more hype
- Sheryl Sanderg steps down from Facebook to become the CEO of Disney
- The PS5 will not ship in 2019
Now it’s your turn to get involved! What we want you to do is go to community.badvoltage.org and tell us which one of our predictions is most likely to happen, which one is least likely to happen, and one of your own!
And in a real prediction of something that will happen in 2019, we bring our fantastic live show back to SCaLE in Pasadena, California on March 8th 2019! Keep listening for more details, but if you haven’t yet got your tickets for SCaLE, we’ve got a discount code to give you so that you can see Bad Voltage Live and all the rest of SCaLE as well. See you there! Go to badvoltage.org/live for more details and to see the trailer!
Stuart Langridge, Jono Bacon, and Jeremy Garcia present Bad Voltage, in which we look back on our predictions for 2018 and see how we did. Not wishing to give anything away, but if you were expecting clairvoyant genius… you might want to tone down your hopes a bit.
And in a real prediction of something that will happen in 2019, we bring our fantastic live show back to SCaLE in Pasadena, California on March 8th 2019! Keep listening for more details, but if you haven’t yet got your tickets for SCaLE, we’ve got a discount code to give you so that you can see Bad Voltage Live and all the rest of SCaLE as well. See you there!
Discuss this episode, and vote in the poll for who you think won, on the forum!
Stuart Langridge, Jono Bacon, and Jeremy Garcia present Bad Voltage, in which there are more rants than expected, there are seven seconds of panic, and:
- [00:02:00] Google drop the latest on Messages, Allo, Duo and Hangouts, where “the latest” is “we’re cancelling Allo”, which both people on Allo are presumably sad about
- [00:16:40] Microsoft are dropping EdgeHTML, their browser rendering engine, and rebuilding Edge to be based on Chrome, which is a more nuanced thing than it might at first appear
- [00:25:51] NASA’s InSight landed on Mars. Nice one, NASA. Six and a half months of travel and it will study the interior of the planet, and “Marsquakes”. Watch the launch video, and then spend some time contemplating ancient technology and admiring this excellent Twitter bot of old 80s home computer magazines
- [00:32:50] Apparently smartphone growth is actually starting to decline, which we think may be at least partially because there’s nothing left to make with phones any more. See Jono’s views on the “notch” for details
- [00:44:00] Someone patents the concept of formal software verification, as long as you’re doing it to financial software, at which all we can do is roll our eyes
- [00:50:10] NHS told to ditch ‘absurd’ fax machines, to which at least some people say “hey, they work”, and others say “shut up grandad, we don’t care”
Stuart Langridge, Jono Bacon, and special guest Alan Pope standing in for Jeremy present Bad Voltage, in which Tiger Tokens are a more viable currency than you think, AI gets things wrong again, and:
- [00:02:20] A popular open source dependency in use by many packages, with two million weekly downloads, was “compromised” in maybe a new and interesting way. The maintainer handed over the package to another developer… who then published an update which stole cryptocurrency wallets. The problem was identified and handled pretty quickly, but this has ignited a great deal of conversation and controversy about the role and responsibilities of open source project maintainers, npm, and the like. We get into it.
- [00:15:40] Jaywalking is a crime in China, and they have cameras to detect it and then publish the pictures publicly to shame the jaywalker. Dong Mingzhu, head of a major Chinese company, got shamed… because the cameras took a picture of a picture of her on the side of a bus and thought it was her. Is this just lulz, or a(nother)cautionary tale about the increasing role of flawed AI in decision making?
- [00:25:40] Google employees ask their bosses to cancel Project Dragonfly, the big G’s planned search engine for China which obeys the Chinese government’s requirements on blocking certain search terms around human rights and banned religions. Amnesty International have weighed in, and there will be protests. This all speaks to a larger discussion about the power of collective bargaining, and a culture which gives (or doesn’t) employees the ability to speak up about high-level decisions they disagree with.
- [00:39:25] The Android hacking community are alight with speculation after a Huawei developer adds a commit to Google’s Fuchsia kernel to enable their Kirin 970 board. The Internet Extrapolation Engine is in overdrive, speculating this means the so-called “Android replacement” is being tested on the “Honor Play” series of Huawei devices. Is this a thing? And a detour into the nature of Android replacements; why do Samsung have Tizen and bada?
- [00:49:00] Twitter: some are specifically recommending that you screenshot, not quote-tweet, controversial tweets that you disagree with because Twitter sees a quote-tweet as an implicit “this is worth sharing” vote and adds credit to that controversial message. Some thoughts on whether this is a good idea, and how small decisions can lead to behavioural bad choices, along with more dodgy AI decisions as Twitter spend some time banning people who tweet about killing Sean Bean in Hitman 2. We’re interested in feedback on how to solve this problem without taking your ball and going home by opting out of social media entirely; let us know on the forum or Slack. Can social media be used as a force for good without also enabling this sort of thing?
Stuart Langridge, Jono Bacon, and Jeremy Garcia present Bad Voltage, in which the show was recorded in slightly unusual circumstances because people are travelling at our normal time, phones are now literally twice as big as they ought to be if you like tiny phones which apparently nobody does, and:
- [00:02:15] Samsung unveil their new foldable phone, which we are, to be honest with you, not all that impressed with
- [00:11:35] In an update on a previous segment, phone companies in the USA have been slammed by FCC for not doing more to handle robocalls, and a whole bunch of information about call screening and automatically routing scam calls to voicemail if you can manage it. How should such things be fixed, or regulated, if at all?
- [00:22:25] Motorola are the first major phone manufacturers to sell official DIY phone repair kits, which is somewhat against previous phone vendors’ approaches to who is allowed to repair their devices. Is this a good thing, or too little too late? And would you buy a Motorola just to get it?
- [00:32:30] Brad Smith, president of Microsoft, says we need to regulate facial recognition tech before ‘the year 2024 looks like the book “1984”‘, which prompts quite a lot of discussion about the role of companies and research in the 21st century and how societal norms may change and may have already changed
Stuart Langridge, Jono Bacon, and Jeremy Garcia present Bad Voltage, in which a proof through poetry is presented and utterly fails to move the audience, Red Hat maintains a ton of things, and:
- [00:01:20] IBM acquires Red Hat; let the hot takes begin
- [00:24:30] Microsoft deal to acquire Github completes, and Nat Friedman is now CEO
- [00:29:23] Working around DRM in the US is now OK, as long as you keep the tools a secret
- [00:35:47] The Google Home Hub is deeply insecure, says a Techcrunch article
- [00:39:50] A global Google staff walkout over misconduct and inequality concerns
- [00:49:25] ExMedicus, an apparently revolutionary health smartwatch, looks a bit fishy to us
- [00:57:40] System76 explain about their factory setup and release shots of their new “Thelio” desktop which has a wooden case and they plant a tree for each one they make
Stuart Langridge, Jono Bacon, and Jeremy Garcia present Bad Voltage, in which we appeal for Colgate corporate sponsorship, nobody adds a fake notch, and:
- [00:01:30] Google release the Pixel 3 phone and Pixel Slate ChromeOS tablet/laptop, with no surprises given all the press leaks ahead of time
- [00:16:30] Google announce the upcoming shutdown of Google Plus, citing “low usage and engagement”. It also seems they had a privacy leak of G+ user data which it’s being claimed they covered up to avoid looking bad and might also have contributed to the decision. Something of a eulogy is required from us, G+ users in the past
- [00:31:48] Microsoft contribute 60,000 software patents to the open source world, which is pretty much an unambiguously good thing, surely?
- [00:41:26] Tim Berners-Lee unveils Solid, his new plan to upend the World Wide Web. Some thoughts on the philosophy it’s trying to bring, and whether it’s going to overturn everything (spoiler alert: no)
- [00:52:18] GDPR seems to be changing things, but in unpredictable ways: website trackers are down 4% in the EU, but up for US users. What’s that all about?
- [00:56:05] A call to our community: Almost half of US cellphone calls will be scams by next year, and Jeremy’s seeing this up at the sharp end. Are you also experiencing this radical rise in scam phone calls? Is this specific to the USA? We’d like to know: tell us on community.badvoltage.org or @badvoltage on twitter
Stuart Langridge, Jono Bacon, and Jeremy Garcia present Bad Voltage, in which the hardest part of being a developer is personal development, the BV team average two-thirds of a workout per day, and:
- [00:02:10] Apple release the Apple Watch 4 with a bunch of health additions, and iOS 12 is apparently pretty good, while at the same time they reject iPhone apps which mention the new Apple phone models … Signing into a Google thing now signs you into the browser whether you want it or not, although it can at least be turned off in later versions if you don’t like it … Elon Musk is in the early stages of McAfee syndrome, according to a chap on Twitter … Jono’s got a Peloton exercise bike and has a mini review…
- [00:38:50] Linus Torvalds writes that he’s taking some time off to get some assistance in understanding people’s emotions and apologises for his past behaviour, vowing to try to do better. The community welcome this new personal insight, or condemn other people for unduly influencing Linus into this decision, and everything in between. We have some thoughts on how we got here, and what’s next.
Stuart Langridge, Jono Bacon, and special guest presenter Alan Pope present Bad Voltage, in which there is temporarily less Jeremy, everyone should have a figurine on their desk which watches over them (tell us on the forum what yours is!), and:
- [00:03:05] Debian are discussing packages in their distro which have problematic names. The main one is weboob, “Web Outside Of Browsers” and there are others. Issues were recently raised in Ubuntu and Plasma, among other places. Do people care, are these names actually a problem? Should these packages be removed or renamed?
- [00:13:00] NVIDIA launch RTX real-time raytracing graphics cards
- [00:27:45] If you own a car and can access it from your phone, that doesn’t get revoked when you sell the car, and you can continue to access it afterwards. Do people use this stuff? Is this worrying, or just caveat emptor? And does this apply to other consumer electronics as well — Teslas, Alexas, connected houses, orthopaedic pillows…?
- [00:40:44] The National Library of Scotland produce a “side-by-side” map viewer of the UK, which shows a modern map and old maps from the early 1900s together, so moving one moves the other. Everyone in the UK immediately looks up where they live and their home town, and it’s fascinating. Nice one, NLS. Also mentioned, pretty minimalist US city map posters
- [00:47:10] The Google Pixel 3 is coming, and we know this because there have been a million leaks. A suspiciously high number of leaks, actually… we’re starting to think that these aren’t leaks at all but a carefully managed PR campaign
- [00:56:55] Twitter remove their facebook app; every cross-posted tweet gets deleted. Er, hooray? Although good luck getting that to happen for your Facebook app…
- [00:59:30] According to a Microsoft-commissioned survey, 50% of parents in the U.S. with children aged 18 and under believed coding and computer programming to be the most beneficial subject to their child’s future employability… but interestingly major tech company CEOs tend to limit their children’s use of tech and want them to read books. Which may or may not be the same issue at all…