SHOW SUMMARY – Preston Smalley takes a break from Comcast X1 app development to share what they are doing today, and how you can keep watching the Cubs (or Bears, or BlackHawks) WITHOUT risking your marriage!
- Holllly Cooowwwwww! Go Cubs!
- Back to the Future week is here!
- Twitter laying off folks
Jay “Geek Trivia” Garmon Trivia Answer
When did FORTRAN stop requiring all capital letters in it’s command structure?
Coolsites of the Week
- XFinity.com – Start here to find out what you’ve been missing!
- StudioXFinity.com – Get location and service information from the Chicago flagship, make an appointment, sign up for a demo, and more!
Podcast Only Song of the Week
TOPIC: The week before Christmas, come join us as we get our geek on! From Kindles in education to more (yes, really, more) security issues and the big Sony hack, we have a blast!
::NOTE:: MINOR TECHNICAL ISSUES PERVADE THE FIRST QUARTER OF THE SHOW … some skipping and short missed sections.
Jay Garmon joins us to throw his far more than 2 cents in, including this awesome geek trivia gem:
How much power did the world’s first electricity generating nuclear reactor generate, and how did they prove it?
Have a great weekend and wonderful Christmas this year … and don’t forget to tune next week! Also, jam out to “A Very Voldemort Christmas” by Draco and the Malfoys!
TOPIC: A wonderful discussion with Ray Daniel about his new book “Terminated” – the first Tucker mystery and a must read! Plus, we get into tech entrepreneurship and writing in Boston, Internet privacy, security, social hacking, and more!
Ray is kind enough to share what tools he uses for writing, and additional links to his writing efforts:
- Scrivner – helps put your thoughts together, keeps them in order.
- Nisus Writer Pro – Clean and simple but ultra-fast word processor.
- RayDanielMystery – Dying for the next Tucker mystery? Find out more about our new favorite geek fiction character here! Don’t miss the links to Ray’s award-winning short stories too.
- Terminated – The book is now available through all major access points, including for your favorite eReader.
Although the dust has barely shaken off his boots, Mike is excited to share a few of his best recommendations for travel apps and planning software:
- RoadTrippers – Plan, discover, share and get on the road! Our pick for best overall trip companion for your own “Great American Road Trip!” Mobile and web versions.
- TripAdvisor – Helps pick hotels, find gas, places to go and more. A great resource for getting good deals on the road.
- Hotels.com – More specific than TripAdvisor, Hotels.com gets you a bed fast and cheap wherever you are! Many of the deals here are not available when you call or through other resources. The mobile app was a lifesaver for us multiple times on our recent adventure!
- Kayak – YATA (yet another travel app), but a good one. Kayak is based on a freemium model, but the free access will work for most things you want to do.
Podcast only song of the week this week is Hurricane by MSMR!
TOPIC: Just little ol’ Dave and me, and that’s all right! Very few technical issues means lots of great tech talk …
We first preview our upcoming Google I/O interview and discussion, and reminisce about the 80’s and who else was stuck carrying around a “Trappist Keeper” because they couldn’t afford the real deal. A bunch of other interesting stuff comes up too, like the sad but totally expected death of Aereo (and how easy it is to cut the TV cables now anyways)!
We also get an awesome Kids Talk Tech segment from Justin, who shares with us his love of “Flappy Golf” … a game that the whole family got addicted to for quite a while – just before being knocked over by the station puppy!
No Coolsites of the Week this week, but a great mellow version of Heartbeats by “The Knife” for all you podcast only listeners.
TOPIC: Mike and Dave spend waaay too long opining about our relative levels of inability to strike up conversation – or even break through the 1,000 yard stare – of booth babes at the auto show, before kicking into some actual, real, tech talk … sadly, this may be due to Jay Garmon giving us the slip this week.
That does give us tons of time for a great Kids Talk Tech segment with special guest Olivia – she breaks down “High School Story” on her Google Nexus, sharing how this can really help those stressed out adolescents regain control over their daily lives! Plus one great coolsite this week:
- HumbleBundle – Pay what you want for great games, books, and music every week!
Stay through to the end for the podcast only song, a great one called “Flaggin a Ride” by the Divine Fits!
TOPIC: Good friend Paul Ulreich comes out again and – after a ton of time covering the death of winamp, wondering about shoutcast, and waxing nostalgic about old school console and coin-op games with Jay Garmon – tells us about how Verizon helped local residents get connected after the incredible tornado destruction in Central Illinois this last month. Talking about Jay, after the questionable recommendation that we spatchcock our turkey, he comes out with his usual awesome Geek Trivia question:
What shopping day generates the most revenue each year (hint: it’s not Black Friday or Cyber Monday!)?
“Kids Talk Tech” this week Justin gives his highest rating to the iOS app “Mystery Room”!
Podcast only song of the week is the Thanksgivvikappropriate “Cold Turkey” by Lenny Kravitz!
TOPIC: Enjoying the new release, Mike and Dave have a blast reminiscing about the “good old days” of music, why you need to back up all your data, and what’s going to happen now that we can timeshift everything in our lives! Mike also discusses his love of SpongeBob as a soporific.
We miss Jay Garmon this week, but can’t wait to talk to him next week, so tune in then! That does give us some time for these great coolsites of the week though:
- FantasyBuzzer – Doing fantasy football this season? If you’re not using fantasy buzzer then you’re doing it wrong! (or at least making your fantasy life much more difficult than it needs to be)
- Drync – Love wine? Can never remember that great wine that you had when you were out? With Drync in your pocket you’ll never have that problem again, and can even order it on the spot!
- UnTappd – Social connection for the beer drinkers among us! Let people know what you’re drinking, and give your friends a hard time for that miller light they’re so partial to!
- Book of Bad Arguments – Knowing and identifying the logical fallacy your friends are using sometimes just isn’t enough; in those cases you need cartoons!
We kind of drift off at the end as time runs out, but we wouldn’t short you on the podcast only song of the week – this week listen to Fingers Never Bleed” by YeaSayer!
TOPIC: Longtime listener and friend of the show, Steve Stewart of MoneyPlanSOS comes on to help you “pay attention, not interest!” Steve is a great guest, an interesting guy and a podcaster of his own (check it out at moneyplansos.com). We have a blast, with Dave “Sparky” Saganaki and Jay Garmon joining us, doling out insight and trivia:
What arguably non-science-fiction author is credited with first proposing augmented reality glasses?
- MoneyPlanSOS – Questions about finances, or getting out of debt? Tune in to guest Steve Stewart as he shares his wealth of experience and tips for getting you back on track!
No time for any other coolsites or music of the week, so just enjoy as we fade to black on this awesome episode …
It’s that time of year again when we start looking at the past year and thinking how great things were these last 12 months. Here at TechTalk HQ we’re no different, and have compiled our internal list of the “best of the best”!
We used a number of metrics to decide the listing, but however you slice it these shows were the ones we either kept going back to, were proud to have special guests on, or that listeners told us were their favorites directly or with the number of times they downloaded and listened to them!
Without further ado, and in no particular order, here’s the TechTalk Top 5 of 2011:
Ep. 249 – Klout Exec Megan Berry -=- This episode was far and away the most downloaded single show of the year. Not only was it a great interview, but we happened to nail the timing just right, with Klout showing up in the news in the weeks prior and after in a big way.
Ep. 247 – NYT Tech Writer Nick Bilton -=- Mike loves having smart people on-air, especially when they’re as interesting and hooked in as Nick is! This episode was a blast to record, and covers such a range of interesting material it had to show up on a best-of list somewhere!
Ep. 236 – Chip Bell is “Wired and Dangerous” -=- Great book, a great guest, what more can you ask for? If you’ve been feeling powerless over the retail sector (bought anything from Best Buy lately?) then this is the episode to cheer you up!
Ep. 235 – Matt Richtel’s “Idle Hands” -=- Matt needs to start writing more books. Not just so that we can read them, but so we can convince him to come on the show more than once a year!
Ep. 233 – VaporStream and IT Harvest -=- After episode 249 with Klout, this was the next most downloaded and listened to show in 2011 by a good margin. Although the security and social networking topic is a very serious one to listeners and corporations, our discussion with these execs is great fun, and worth listening to again if you haven’t for a while!
These were some great episodes too, and tough to not include in our top 5 … so we’re putting them here! If you missed ’em, this is a great second chance. Some of the news in the show might be dated, but the interviews and info are great.
Ep. 230 – Transhman much? -=- What does it mean to be human in an age when we do so little for ourselves? Mike and his guests take a good shot at an answer!
Ep. 217 – Facebook for Old Folks! -=- Mike Miller is a regular for a reason, and this show (and his book) confirm why!
Ep. 227 – LeBlanc Dishes on Jive -=- Jive is just a cool software company doing neat stuff … and Bryan LeBlanc tells us why and how!
TOPIC: Mike and Dave miss our good buddy Jay Garmon, but have a lot of fun anyways debating Pandora vs. Slacker vs. iTunes and your personal music collection … and whatever you pick now it’s all shared on Facebook, for better or worse! We get into some browser wars, security and police, and then find a little time for coolsites of the week:
- Desmos Graphing Calculator – Quick and easy, great looking graphs from your functions and data points; almost enough to make even Mike look smart!
- Stickman – A great game for those of us whose drawing ability is stuck at about 2nd grade!
- Google Flights – Searching, planes, airlines, prices. Perfect!
- Hipmunk – Great mobile and web app for finding not just the cheapest, but the best flights!
The podcast only song of the week this week is “Hang Me Up to Dry” by The Cold War Kids!