Why are we such cheapskates?! - CoT Episode 048

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In this episode we discuss: Why are we so reluctant to pay for stuff on the internet, iOS 10 Bluetooth woes, hacker economics, 2.5Gbps Cat 5e cabling, Blackberry pivoting to fend off the reaper, Civilization VI may ruin Ethan's life, and much more!

What are you willing to pay for?

    Content isn’t free. It costs time to make, the most valuable resource we have. It costs money to host.

    We hate ads, but the alternative is to pay. We like privacy, but we often give it away to use a service costing no cash out of pocket.

    The question is why we are cheap about online services? We’ll drop fat cash to eat out, no problem. But $5 on a service? Or $10? Or $20 each month? That throws us off.

    And it’s true that a bunch of little services do add up…

    But still. Are we cheap when we shouldn’t be when consuming online services?


iOS 10 Bluetooth Issues

https://9to5mac.com/2016/09/29/iphone-7-ios-10-bluetooth-connectivity-issues/

    More than half of iOS 10 users are reporting issues.

    Yep, I’ve been having issues with iOS 10.0.2 connecting to my Garmin Fenix 3 watch specifically. Although it has been better since the 10.0.2 update.

    Random disconnects. Solution is to reconnect via the iPhone Bluetooth interface, although that doesn’t always work.

    Rebooting the watch or the phone doesn’t impact the behavior.

    One rumor suggests that forgetting and re-pairing the device can stabilize the connection. I did just that this morning, and so we shall see. FOR SCIENCE!

    Eric’s Galaxy S7 got an update that actually just fixed my bluetooth.


Civ VI - Maybe the one you’re looking for.

http://arstechnica.com/gaming/2016/09/civilization-civ-6-preview-hands-on/

https://www.civilization.com/

    I’ve played the Civ series casually.

    Enough to know I like it. Not enough to be branded a true fan, unlike AoE, which I played every version of, with most or all of the expansions.

    New look. Same hexagons, but more of a cartoon-y feel. Reportedly beautiful, particularly in motion.

    So detailed, the author reports pausing to just stare at the landscapes and cityscapes, zooming in just to admire.

    All of the religious & cultural features of Civ V and expansions Gods & Kings and Brave New World.

    Tech tree split. Now a science tree and a civics tree. Separate evolutions.

    “New to both trees is the excellent Eureka! system, which essentially gives you small quest objectives to complete in order to boost the research of every technological advancement.” In short, every little thing you do impacts game play. Kill a barbarian, cut weapons research time down. Explore the ocean, move faster towards sailing. “Everything makes sense, because everything is directly influenced by what your civilisation is doing in the world. More importantly, it opens up new ways to play, encouraging you to throw away tired and tested methods and try something new. I love this change—it might even be my favourite in the game.”

    There’s so much more, and in the preview version, the game wasn’t even done yet.

    Release date is October 21, 2016. Available for pre-order on the PC platform (Windows).

      The standard edition is $59.99 (you know, $60) on Amazon. Also Steam, Green Man Gaming, and Best Buy.

      Digital deluxe edition is $79.99 (you know, $80). That gets you the 4 DLCs when they come.

      The 25th anniversary edition I didn’t see an Amazon price, but Best Buy had it for $89.99 (you know, $90). That gets you all the other stuff, plus a hardcover book and commemorative coin set.


IEEE 802.3bz-2016 injects new life into your old cables.

ARTICLE URL

    2.5Gbps over CAT5E at 100m.

    5.0Gbps over CAT6 at 100m.

    Good for homes and office cabling plants.

    “The physical (PHY) layer of 2.5G/5GBASE-T is very similar to 10GBASE-T, but instead of 400MHz of spectral bandwidth it uses either 200MHz or 100MHz, thus not requiring a super-high-quality mega-shielded cable.” < Like CAT6a or CAT7.

    Drivers for this include 802.11ac, although keep in mind that APs are not meant to be saturated, and don’t typically operate that way. What you’re really getting are faster bursts.

    Longer term drivers could be FTTH.

    Financial play here. Manufacturers can rollout 2.5Gbps and 5.0Gbps Ethernet switching gear, knowing that the vast majority of existing cabling plants can support it.

    In the near term, this doesn’t accomplish much for home users. Internet is rarely over a few hundred Mbps, let along Gbps. Traffic in the home isn’t that high, either.

    Even 4K streaming is in the 25Mbps ballpark.

    The bottleneck remains our Internet pipes and their data caps.


Hacker economics. Find a zero-day. Get paid.

https://9to5mac.com/2016/09/30/zerodium-ios-exploit-bounty-1-5m/

    Zerodium is a company that looks for vulnerabilities in Android and iOS, and then sells them to governments and corporations.

    They are a digital arms dealer.

    Since iOS 10 just got tougher to hack, they have raised their bounty to $1.5M from $1M.

    Why not get paid by Apple? Because they only pay about $200K. Although their standards are not as rigorous to get paid.


Deathwatch

No more Blackberry hardware. But perhaps a software resurrection?

http://arstechnica.com/gadgets/2016/09/rip-blackberry-hardware-company-pivots-to-software/

http://fortune.com/2016/09/23/blackberry-radar/

    BlackBerry CEO John Chen said, "The company plans to end all internal hardware development and will outsource that function to partners. This allows us to reduce capital requirements and enhance return on invested capital."

    Chen also said, “In Q2, we more than doubled our software revenue year over year and delivered the highest gross margin in the company's history. We also completed initial shipments of BlackBerry Radar, an end-to-end asset tracking system, and signed a strategic licensing agreement to drive global growth in our BBM consumer business."

    What is Radar? “BlackBerry announced its first big order on Thursday with Canadian cross-border transportation firm Caravan Transport Group, which has deployed 500 units of the Radar on its trailers, according to Bloomberg. The device is said to be a self-powered, two-piece box that’s appended to the rear side of a container and is able to dispatch updates to the network every 15 minutes. BlackBerry did not disclose how much the sale was for.”


Content I Like

Rogue Legacy

http://store.steampowered.com/app/241600/ $15

https://www.gog.com/game/rogue_legacy $3.74 (On sale) (DRM Free - YAY!)

    Metroid / Castelvania exploration action game

    RPG elements

    Humor galore

    When you die you select an heir from your family tree, they then inherit the cash you collected and have various traits:

      Near-sighted

      ADHD - move faster

      Glaucoma - Stuff is dark

      OCD - cleaning rooms (breaking stuff) gives health or mana points

      Etc.

    Classes

      Mage

      Barbarian

      Paladin

    Basically a retro gaming experience brought with a modern twist and a sense of humor

    Highly playable, tight controls

    Xbox 360 or other nice controller advised.

    Available for Windows, Mac, and Linux / SteamOS


Regular Car Reviews

https://www.youtube.com/user/RegularCars

    Brilliant.

    Fun.

    Bizarre.

    Unexpected locker room references.

    Cars from the past. Cars from the present.

    Much less about numbers and much more about culture -- fitting the car into the world in a way that makes sense to real people, and not automotive journalists living inside their own sphincters.


Today I Learned

The entire scale, and then some, of a bass clef can be played in the first five frets of a bass guitar. All those other notes are totally extra.


The Perhapsatron was an early fusion power device in the 1950s. James Tuck named his device whimsically on the off chance that it might be able to create fusion reactions. After multiple revisions... it remained the Perhapsatron, never to become the In-fact-a-tron.


Outro


That does it for this episode of Citizens of Tech. Thanks for listening to the show, if you liked it, by all means share it with a friend. Also, don’t forget that you can support the show via Patreon or just by shopping on Amazon through our referral link. citizensoftech.com/amazon. That just helps us get the word out to likeminded folks that enjoy the topics we can’t shut up about.


Now if you’ll excuse us, we have to go rewire the grav thruster because somebody won't replace that crappy compression coil.


73 episodes available. A new episode about every 10 days averaging 47 mins duration .