DTNS 2231 – Noncombatant Groceries Will not be Harmed

Logo by Mustafa Anabtawi thepolarcat.comDarren Kitchen is on the show and we’ll talk about Apple buying Beats Electronics and the UN debating the need for autonomous killer robots. also Len Peralta will illustrate the whole shebang. Join us won’t you?


Multiple versions (ogg, video etc.) from Archive.org.


A special thanks to all our Patreon supporters–without you, none of this would be possible.

If you enjoy the show, please consider supporting the show here at the low, low cost of a nickel a day on Patreon. Thank you!

Big thanks to Dan Lueders for the music and Martin Bell for the opening theme!

Big thanks to Mustafa A. from thepolarcat.com for the logo!

Thanks to our mods, Kylde, TomGehrke and scottierowland on the subreddit

Show Notes

Today’s guests:  Darren Kitchen and Len Peralta


The Financial Times reports “as early as next week” Apple will announce a deal to acquire Beats Electronics for $3.2 billion. Beats is the leading headphone seller in the US, founded by musician Dr. Dre and record producer Jimmy Iovine. The company recently launched an online music streaming service as well. FT says some details have yet to be agreed on and the talks could still fall apart.” The Next Web reports a video posted to Facebook by actor-singer-songwriter Tyrese Gibson had the caption “Dr Dre ON THE night his deal went public that he did with Apple 3.2 BILLION!!!!” It has since been removed.

TechCrunch reports Apple has hired Ari Partinen, the senior engineer who worked on Nokia’s PureView smartphone camera technology. Partinen confirmed the move on Twitter. Nokia’s PureView technology uses a technique of pixel oversampling to reduce noise in images — enabling lower resolution shots to be produced with high clarity and strong color.

The Verge a federal court ruled Google must pay Oracle for the use of the Java API in Android, overturning a lower court decision. Google built its own version of Java but used the Java API to make it easier for programmers to write for Andorid. The district court had ruled the API was “a utilitarian and functional set of symbols.” Oracle appealed the ruling and a Federal Court says the API is Oracle’s property and as such Google has to pay. Lawyer Sara Jeong tweeted the decision is like “getting mad at a screwdriver for looking like a screwdriver.” Supreme Court here we come.

CNET and many Netflix users noticed today that Netflix has raised their prices as promised, $1 a month in the US and £1 a month in the UK and €1 a month in the Eurozone. That means monthly rates for new customers of £6.99 per month €8.99 or $8.99. Exisiting Netflix customers are exempt for the next two years. Netflix also says it will reintroduce the old pricing levels but those plans will only get you standard def and one user per account. 

PCMag reports link shortening service, Bitly announced late Thursday it has been hacked, exposing user email addresses, encrypted passwords, API Keys and OAuth tokens. At this time no accounts appear to have been compromised. The company has secured all paths that led to the compromise and urged all users to reset passwords. 

Reuters reports Xiaomi will release its first tablet soon. Reuters says its sources say the tablet will have a 7.9-inch screen and be called the MiPad.The Chinese smartphone company will hold an event in Beijing May 15 but has not said what it will announce. A 4G sucessor to the Mi3 smartphone widely being referred to as the Mi3S is also a possibility. 

Engadget reports that UK ISPs BT, Sky, Virgin Media and Talk Talk have all signed a deal with the music and movie industry organizations to send out educational missives to alleged pirates starting next year. So if someone thinks you’re infringing copyright and you’re a customer of one of these ISPs, starting next year you might get a letter telling you to stop infringing copyright.

News From You

Our top story on the subreddit comes from spsheridan who posted the GigaOm story about new groups opposing FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler’s Net Neutrality plan. The latest protest letter comes from more than 50 venture capitalists asking for the commission to reconsider the proposal that would allow commercially reasonable discrimination. Several organizations are planning a May 15 protest, the day of the FCC open meeting where the notice for proposed rulemaking will be voted on. Professor Tim Wu writing in the New Yorker proposed a clever plan where the previous rules could go into effect but if companies sued the FCC again, ISPs would be reclassified as telecommunications services, thus discouraging lawsuits.

One company has already started a direct protest, dillydobbs and Aractor both posted this one.  Ars Technica reports on Neocities.org, a webhosting company that has throttled any connections to its homepage from IP addresses arising inside the FCC, to 28.8Kbps speeds. Neocities creator Kyle Drake wrote “ I’m not removing it until the FCC pays us for the bandwidth they’ve been wasting instead of doing their jobs.”

KAPT_Kipper submitted the Ars Technica story that Amazon has taken action against the wireless device company Mediabridge Products, that you may remember sent a threatening legal letter to an individual who wrote a negative review of one of their wireless routers. Mediabridge posted an official statement to its Facebook page defending its actions and admitting Amazon has revoked its selling privileges. 

And TheFixxer sent us the CNET article about self-healing plastic developed by researchers at the University of Illinois. Jeffry Moore, who worked on the research team under aerospace engineering professor Scott White said the material is nonliving but repairs itself in a way similar to living organisms. When the plastic is damaged, liquids flow into the gap and form a gel, similar to the way blood coagulates to heal a wound. The technology can regenerate a hole created by a nine-millimeter bullet. 



Discussion Section Links: 







Pick of the Day:  Tonx and Misto box – They send you coffee!

Monday ‘s guest: Iyaz Akhtar of cnet.com and GFQ Network

DTNS 2230 – The phone is mightier than the gun

Logo by Mustafa Anabtawi thepolarcat.comDan Patterson is on the show. He’ll talk about his experience training Sudanese media makers in Egypt and how mobile phones are changing the world.


Multiple versions (ogg, video etc.) from Archive.org.


A special thanks to all our Patreon supporters–without you, none of this would be possible.

If you enjoy the show, please consider supporting the show here at the low, low cost of a nickel a day on Patreon. Thank you!

Big thanks to Dan Lueders for the music and Martin Bell for the opening theme!

Big thanks to Mustafa A. from thepolarcat.com for the logo!

Thanks to our mods, Kylde, TomGehrke and scottierowland on the subreddit

Show Notes

Today’s guest: Dan Patterson, technologist and journalist


Did I say “forever”? I meant, “not really”: The Next Web reports Snapchat agreed to a “Consent decree” with the U.S. FTC over a database leak and misrepresentation of how the service stored user messages. Snapchat had said photos and videos would “disappear forever,” although there were many ways to work around that. Snapchat changed its privacy policy, app description and in-app notifications. Snapchat’s agreement with the FTC requires that it create a privacy program, subject itself to independent monitoring for 20 years, and stop misrepresenting how it handles user data.

Next stop – Head of the WORLD! Reuters reports that Samsung replaced the head of its mobile design team, Chang Dong-hoon, who offered to resign last week. Lee Min-hyouk will take over the role. Chang will focus on the Design Strategy Team, which is responsible for long-term design across all Samsung’s businesses. Lee has been a rising star at Samsung, becoming the company’s youngest senior executive in 2010 for his role in designing the Galaxy series of phones. 

Can’t wait to see the comments section: Reuters also reports more than 100 technology companies, including Google, Facebook, Twitter and Amazon signed a letter to the U.S. FCC opposing proposed open Internet guidelines that would allow commercially reasonable traffic discrimination. The letter called the rules a ‘grave threat to the Internet’ and called for a delay in their proposal. A meeting is set for May 15th which would make the proposal official, and open the guidelines to a public comment period.

Mario figurine, anyone? Ars Technica reports Nintendo plans to release a low-priced game console targeted towards “emerging markets.” Nintendo President Satoru Iwata spoke to the press following an investor briefing Wednesday, but didn’t give details on the new hardware or what countries it would be released in. Nintendo also announced “the Nintendo Figurine Platform” featuring collectible toys that share data with a variety of Nintendo games using NFC.

I would like all the players to wear pink: The Verge reports Epic Games announced the next Unreal Tournament will be completely free and developed in the open. The development will be lead by senior Epic Games programmers, but anyone can contribute. The company plans to use forums and Twitch Streams as well as a GitHub repository. The company plans to make money off a forthcoming online marketplace for user-generated mods and content. 

Thanks, I think? Re/code reports executives from Comcast and Time Warner Cable appeared before the U.S. House Judiciary Committee. Most of the questions asked what the benefit to the consumers would be. Comcast replied the combined company would deliver a significantly improved customer experience, but not lower prices. Rep. Blake Farenthold of Texas, noted that the combined company would serve 91% of Hispanic households, and asked for assurances the company would not discriminate against non Comcast-NBC spanish-language programming.

Move over, Twitter: The Next Web reports Japanese messaging app Line reported revenues have increased 223% over the past year and 19% over the past quarter. Line has more than 420 million registered users and makes half its revenues from in-app purchases related to some 30 games connected tot he messaging app. Line also makes money from advertisers who can push messages to followers who have asked for them. Paul McCartney for instance has more followers on Line than on Twitter. The company has been piloting flash sales through the app. And also stickers. They sell virtual stickers. 

News From You

Angryfuture submitted the top story on the subreddit today from Tweaktown, which I also found reported on Ars Technica. Lawyers for Mediabridge Products who make routers, sent a letter to a redditor called trevely Monday threatening to sue unless he deleted a negative review of a Medialink Wireless Router from Amazon. Mediabridge’s attorney, Neal Jacobs says trevely’s review was a “campaign to damage, discredit, defame and libel Mediabridge.”

toddkam posted the Business Week article about a group from Université Laval in Quebec who won Shell’s Eco-marathon Americas competition with a car that achieved 2,824 miles per gallon. If that impresses you, it shouldn’t. Last year the same school achieved 3,587 miles per gallon. The car, which competed in the prototype class of the competition has a teardrop shape, and is not built for comfort or speed.

Spydrchick submitted the Gawker story that a band from LA called Vulfpeck racked up $20,000 in royalties from Spotify thanks to their album Sleepify. The band asked fans to stream the entirely silent album through the night as they slept, racking up plays for Vulfpeck that paid $.007 cents per track. Fans could generate $3 a night for the band and enough nights and enough fans added up to $20K. Spotify spokesman Graham James said, “Sleepify seems derivative of John Cage’s work.” Spotify has also made the band remove the album for violating terms of service. Whether they’ll get paid a check remains to be seen.

Discussion Section Links: 








Pick of the Day:  Todoist via Ashish Bogawat

Ashish Bogawat has our pick of the day: the task list management app Todoist. “With a pretty minimalistic interface, the app can be as simple or complex as you want – no mean feat in this day & age. That it has native clients available for virtually every platform out there, as well as offline mode in the web app is just icing on the cake.”

Friday’s guest: Darren Kitchen and Len Peralta

Sword and Laser at the Nebula Awards

The Nebula Awards weekend is coming up in San Jose May 15-18, with the awards themselves announced Saturday night the 17th.

Although Veronica is out of town, Tom will be there with Josh Lawrence to interview as many authors as we can trick into sitting down and chatting with us.

So far we’ve managed to get a few. If you’d like to suggest what we should ask, here are the links to the Goodreads threads where you can post your questions.

Emily Jiang
Ken Liu
Ann Leckie

Samuel Delany
Dr. Gregory Benford

DTNS 2229 – Wii U Buy Me?

Logo by Mustafa Anabtawi thepolarcat.comPelle Eklund and I talk about whether proposed net neutrality regulations are already slowing investment and why an LG fridge that text messages you is actually a step backward for tech.


Multiple versions (ogg, video etc.) from Archive.org.

Multiple versions (ogg, video etc.) from Archive.org.


A special thanks to all our Patreon supporters–without you, none of this would be possible.

If you enjoy the show, please consider supporting the show here at the low, low cost of a nickel a day on Patreon. Thank you!

Big thanks to Dan Lueders for the music and Martin Bell for the opening theme!

Big thanks to Mustafa A. from thepolarcat.com for the logo!

Thanks to our mods, Kylde, TomGehrke and scottierowland on the subreddit

Show Notes

Today’s guest: Eklund, founder of hockeybuzz.com


The Verge reports Evernote announced an expanded partnership with LinkedIn for better address book organization and improved business card scanning in the iOS app. Evernote’s scanner will pull information from LinkedIn as well as add time and place of the contact. LinkedIN will start directing folks to Evernote for card scanning rather than its own CardMunch app which is shutting down July 11th. 

GigaOm notes Google is buying StackDriver, which monitors cloud workload, especially for customers of Amazon Web Services. Google has been trying to build up its own cloud platform to compete with Amazon. 

Most of you will not care at all that Apple’s VP of worldwide communications, Katie Cotton is retiring after more than 18 years at the company But this is big news for journalists who have deal with Apple PR. Apple told Recode Cotton wants to spend more time with her children. 

ZDNet reports that HP is the latest to get on the open source OpenStack cloud platform. HP will invest $1 billion in cloud computing and add openstack in 20 data centers over the next 18 months. HP is joining NASA, Rackspace, IBM and others in promoting Openstack and running your own private cloud as an alternative to the Amazon and Google’s of the world and their public clouds. Insert “get off my cloud” joke here for those over 30. Convert to ‘cloud rap’ subgenre reference for others.

TechCrunch reports Google is buying Appetas, a site that helps restaurants build their own websites, even integrating services like grubHub and OpenTable as well as social networks in an easy cost-effective manner. Google plans to shut the service down. 

Ars Technica reports Nintendo— oh Nintendo. Wii U sales missed fiscal year projections by 80,000 to come in at 2.8 million. Nintendo went into the fiscal year expecting to sell 9 million. Hey but the 3DS sol 12.2 million units still below the 13.5 million projected. Nintendo also lost money. Lots and lots of money. ¥46.4 billion, the third straight annual loss. Hey but Nintendo has three things going for them. Mario, Zelda and no debt!

CNET reports on Huawei’s launch of the Ascen P7 smartphone. It’s a 5-inch Android phone with 1920×1080 display running Huawei’s Emotion interface. But the big feature is the 8-megapixel front-facing camera. Yep. Front-facing, rear one has 13 mehgapixels. But 8 megapixels should give you some nice high-res selfies. Just in time for selfies to become passé. Which is why Huawei made up a new word to describe group selfies like Ellen would take at an awards cermonies. Groufies. Huawei would like you to call those groufies. The phone will be available initially in June in dozens of European and Asian countries for a price of 449 euros (US$625) unlocked. 

The Verge passes along data from a UN ITU report that the Internet will have 3 billion active users, about 40% of the world’s population, by the end of this year. Active means they used the Internet once in the past three months, not just had access to it. Three out of four people in Europe will be using the internet by the end of the year, compared to two out of three in the Americas and one in three in Asia and the Pacific. In Africa, nearly one in five people will be online by the end of the year. Mobile phone subscriptions should reach 7 billion and mobile internet subscriptions should make up 2.3 billion.

News From You

spsheridan had our top story of today on the subreddit. BGR reports Al Franken, my friends, has made a video promoting a website called noslowlane.com. The US Senator is trying to rally opposition to the FCC regulations that would allow comercially reasonable traffic prioritization. He uses Google Video vs. YouTube as an example of the open Internet working to make a scrappy up and comer defeat a behemoth incumbent. ‘Cause Google Video sucked and YouTube was better and so Google bought YouTube and killed Google Video and YouTube might have never got off the ground if it had to pay commercially reasonable video rates to a bunch of ISPs. 

tm204 pointed out that App.net has good news. They’re profitable and self-sustaining thanks to paid subscriptions for the social network. App.net will continue to operate normally on an indefinite basis.Without any employees. Yeah the bad news is to be profitable App.net can’t have any full time employees, including the founders. So they’re all gone. The company will get by with contracters and will be open sourcing a larger and larger percentage of the App.net codebase. 

tekkyn00b gave us the Verge story that Russia’s President signed a law requiring any blogger with more than 3,000 readers to register with the Roskomnadzor, Russia’s media agency. The law covers microblogs and social networks as well. Registered writers will be responsible for fact-checking and are forbidden from harming the reputation of a person or group or hiding or falsifying “information of general interest.” Writers will also be required to publish their surname, initials, and email address.

MikePKennedy submitted the Verge story that the US Navy announced the Navy eReader Device, yep, abbreviated as NeRD. It’s an e-ink tablet with no Internet, no removable storage, and come preloaded with 300 books that will never change. The Navy doesn’t allow devices like iPads which have cameras and emit signals that could be detected.

And here’s some breaking good news ABOUT calendars! It only took 90 minutes to fund the kickstarter to bring Upcoming.org back to life. Remember Upcoming? The terrific arts and tech calendar site that yahoo bought in 2005 and then ignored and then sunsetted in 2007? Well Yahoo allowed the Andy Baio, the sites original creator to buy back the domain, and then today, 90 minutes after he launched the kickstarter it was funded. Jennie, who writes up the calendar each day is VERY happy about this. YAY!

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Pick of the Day:  Google Keep via Vance McAllister

Vance McAllister has our pick of the day: Tom, as you might guess, my pick is a Google app, but one that tends to fly under the radar despite doing one simple thing very well. Although I am a dedicated Evernote user, I have been finding myself using Keep more and more without any overlap. Whereas Evernote is my digital file cabinet, I use Keep as digital Post-It Notes. It is fast and easy to pull up on a phone or computer to jot down a name, number, create a quick list, or anything that I need to save for later. Then, just like a Post-It Note, that information is usually used and discarded. Anything important enough to keep still goes into Evernote, but I am not cluttering Evernote up with these small, temporary bits and pieces. The Keep interface on Android and iOS is clean, simple and attractive, and there is even a standalone Chrome App for Windows and Mac in addition to the web interface. Since it is free and available on every platform, I encourage folks to give it a go! Vance, from the increasingly hot California desert

Thursday’s guest: Dan Patterson, technology journalist

DTNS 2228 – Congestion question

Logo by Mustafa Anabtawi thepolarcat.comAllison Sheridan joins me to talk about the rising maker revolution, open source hardware, and Google’s advance on the classroom.


Multiple versions (ogg, video etc.) from Archive.org.


A special thanks to all our Patreon supporters–without you, none of this would be possible.

If you enjoy the show, please consider supporting the show here at the low, low cost of a nickel a day on Patreon. Thank you!

Big thanks to Dan Lueders for the music and Martin Bell for the opening theme!

Big thanks to Mustafa A. from thepolarcat.com for the logo!

Thanks to our mods, Kylde, TomGehrke and scottierowland on the subreddit

Show Notes

Today’s Guest: Allison Sheridan of podfeet.com and The NosillaCast


CNET reports Google and Intel announced more than 20 new devices running Google’s Chrome OS on Intel’s Bay Trail and Haswell processors. PC makers: Acer, Asus, Dell, Hewlett-Packard, Lenovo, LG, and Toshiba will all make the devices. Lenovo had their own Chrome OS announcement including a 64-bit Bay Trail powered Yoga Chromebook. Samsung was notably absent. All announced devices use conflict-free metals in their construction. I haven’t seen this many non Wintel PCs since the OS/2 Warp days. 

Remember we said the jury awarded Apple $120 million in the latest Apple-Samsung patent dustup? Well surprise, suprise, Samsung is plans to challenge the verdict as “unsupported by evidence,” according to Bloomberg. Samsung will tell the court they would rather pay a lower amount, according to Samsung lawyer John Quinn. Zero. They would like to pay zero please. Both companies will also likely pursue bans on each others devices. Want to know why Samsung and Apple are at each others throats like this? Go read Kurt Eichenwald’s excellent in depth writeup at vanityfair.com.

CNET reports Microsoft sent out invites to the press for a “small gathering” on the morning of May 20th in New York City. It could mean Microsoft just wants a few of their favorite journalists to have brunch, or it could mean Microsoft is being clever and wants to announce a smaller Microsoft Surface tablet.

CNET reports Flux, once a part of the secretive Google X labs has raised $8 million in Series A funding. Flux is developing and testing its collaborative-design software for the building construction industry. The idea is to help build sustainable structures that reduce energy consumption. It hopes to launch the product in early 2015.

Gigaom reports Dropcam will launch a line of sensors called Tabs, that can tell when a door or window has been opened as well as detect movement. The Tabs work with the dropcam cameras and will sell for $29 starting in August. The cameras themselves will also get an upgrade in August, being able to use the cloud to tell when a human is in its view and eventually tell which human that is. More details to follow at the GigaOm Structure Conference June 18th and 19th.

The Next Web reports Google Maps for Android and iOS got an update with several new features including the ability to tell you which lane to be in so you don’t miss your exit off the highway, as well as avoid high traffic lanes! Maps also gets an easier way to take an alternate route while driving as well integration of Uber alongside other transit options. 

TechCrunch reports Google is rolling out a new Classroom app which uses Docs, Drive and Gmail to make it easier to hand out track and accept student assignments. The system is free and Ad-free but will be invite only to start. Educators can apply to the preview program at https://classroom.google.com/signup and the first group of testers will be notified in about a month. 

News From You: 

AtomicSpaceGun posted the Gizmodo article about a series of email exchanges revealed by Al Jazeera News between the US NSA director at the time Keith Alexander and executives from Google. The exchanges from 2012 were obtained by a Freedom of Information Act request. The meetings indicate Google along with Microsoft, HP, AMD, Apple, and others were working on cybersecurity issues such as efforts to secure BIOS on enterprise platforms and participation in “classified threat briefings.” The meetings were part of seomthing called the Enduring Security Framework and don’t seem to have any relationship to programs revealed by Edward Snowden’s leaks. 

the_corley sent us the Engadget story that Dropbox closed down many of their shared links after realizing a security flaw could unintentionally expose those documents. Apparently Dropbox was not doing anything about blocking referrer links from being logged. Let’s say Allison sent me a document via a dropbox link that had a link to apple.com in it. Then I open that document from the dropbox link and click on the link to Apple.com. The sysadmins at Apple could look int heir logs and see that someone was referred to their site from the dropbox link. Then they could access that same document using that link. Dropbox says they have patched the problem.

HouseofBrick had the most popular new story on subreddit today. Ars Technica reports that a ban on drones announced by the US National Park Services does not appear use a legal basis that could apply to drones. Instead of creating a new regulation and holding the public comment that usually comes with it, the Park Service cited an existing regulation that restricts “delivering or retrieving a person or object by parachute, helicopter, or other airborne means.” So no riding your drones into or out of Yosemite people!

And TVSEgon posted the Gizmodo story of a man who accidentally received a $400,000 unmanned aerial vehicle delivered to his door by UPS. Not by drone. Reddit user Seventy_Seven. said he called UPS who said it was up to him whether to keep it or not. A card in the box said it belonged to NOAA Aircraft Operations Center in Tampa, Florida, whom Seventy_seven said would get a call next.

Pick of the Day: Goodreader via Russell Manthy

Russell Manthy has the pick of the day: “We have been using iPads for business for about two and a half years now and the key tool we have found is Goodreader. As there is no native file manager on the iPad you need a way to manage, present and share files. After trying a number of others we have found that Goodreader is the best for what we do. It handles almost any standard file type (PDF, MS Office, video, images, etc.) and allows you to manage and display them in a manner very similar to the typical file manager on the desktop. It populates from cloud services like Dropbox, Box, the Microsoft cloud service and a variety of others. Documents can also be added from email attachments and it links to your email to send documents from the app. One other really nice feature is that it has a fairly robust markup tool for PDF files. We utilize this in meetings quite a bit when the iPad is connected to a projector. It allows for real time markups and speeds the consensus building on projects.”

Tomorrow’s Guest: Eklund of hockeybuzz.com

FEATURED REVIEW: The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood

Welcome to our Featured Reviews! In this series, we’ll be highlighting book reviews by the S&L audience. If you want to submit a review, please check out the guidelines here! -Veronica

Review by Caro (?)

Freedom, like anything else, is relative.

Why I read this book

Last year (2013) I read my first book from Margaret Atwood, The Edible Woman, and loved it. The way she threw fiction elements while making a very impressive critique of society was amazing for me, and so I wanted to keep reading her work. The Handmaid’s Tale has been mentioned several times as an iconic part of her work and when I saw it on my recommended on Audible it was a no brainer to get myself a copy.

What the book is about

The book is set in a dystopian future, taking place mostly in what used to be Massachusetts. After a “terrorist” attack, a theocratic, Christian regime has taken over. Women have lost any right they might’ve had and all “sinners” (homosexuals, people who committed adultery, people of other faiths) have been either killed or “re educated” (are you cringing already?) . The story is told by a woman we learn to know as Offred, this implying that she is a possession of a man with Fred on his surname. Offred has been made a Handmaid which in this new country, more than servant, implies child bearer. It is explained through the book that due to chemical contamination, radiation and other factors, procreation has been in declined in the country, and hence the government have established that officials not only have a wife, but also access to women (the handmaids) that will carry their child, sort off surrogate mothers. After delivery, the child is given to the wife to raise. Offred’s destiny depends on her submission and her ability to bear children.

First impressions 

Listening to this book was hard, mostly because of the way women are treated, but also because you feel that this speculative work of fiction could easily take place again (references to other theocratic regimes are easily spotted, particularly Iran). Jumps from present to past are sometimes abrupt, but it carries a good feeling of how train of thought sometimes takes place and, in my case at least, makes the connection with the protagonist even deeper. That type of writing made me feel pain, angst and helplessness as Offred was feeling them too.

Final thoughts

Is hard for me to put into words my final thoughts. See, I have a lot of feelings when I think of this book, but they are not easy to put into paper, simply because they touch so deep. But let’s try.

I felt rage as a woman, at to how women were treated. I’ve read some other reviews saying “well this would never happen; oh our society would never let this happen to women”. And yet look at all the contraception legislation in the USA, most of the definitions are being taken by male politicians, and people are going with it.

I felt afraid of this being a plausible thing, maybe not right now where I am, but somewhere in the world there is right now a totalitarian movement, feeding, slowly maybe, and growing and getting more and more powerful. There are things that seem to happen suddenly when you are far away, but is just because you weren’t in site to see the tiny changes that carried a big one. And this applies to any type of changes, positive or negative, particularly since this label is so subjective. The critic about how money was not physical anymore hit a stroke in me. I never thought about how I rely on plastic more and more. Not on credit, but I use my debit card most of the time and hence my contact with physical money has been decreasing more and more.

I felt sad at the different situations Offred had to go through, leaving her past behind, having so many memories, so many loved ones that she lost, almost overnight.

I felt a bit frustrated at the end of the book, because I wanted more closure, but at the same time, the way the author rounds the whole thing up, made me “forgive” the not knowing.

I loved Claire Danes as a narrator. At first I thought her tone was a bit flat, but this was at very beginning when the character was just stating facts. As emotions surged, as different characters appeared, so did new tones, new inflictions in her voice that made me get more into the whole story.

Nobody dies of lack of sex, is lack of love we die from 

DTNS 2227 – A mighty solar wind

Logo by Mustafa Anabtawi thepolarcat.comJonathan Strickland is on the show with an intriguing story about a way to combine solar AND wind to solve our energy woes. Plus Mozilla gets all creative with the net neutrality problem. Did they solve it?


Multiple versions (ogg, video etc.) from Archive.org.


A special thanks to all our Patreon supporters–without you, none of this would be possible.

If you enjoy the show, please consider supporting the show here at the low, low cost of a nickel a day on Patreon. Thank you!

Big thanks to Dan Lueders for the music and Martin Bell for the opening theme!

Big thanks to Mustafa A. from thepolarcat.com for the logo!

Thanks to our mods, Kylde, TomGehrke and scottierowland on the subreddit

Show Notes
Today’s guest: Jon Strickland, host of FW:Thinking, co-host of Tech Stuff and writer for How Stuff Works ho


CNET reports Apple and Samsung have finally reached the end of one of their patent battles. A jury handed down a verdict Friday in San Jose California, ordering Samsung to pay Apple $119.6 million and ordering Apple to pay Samsung $158,400. Apple had asked for $2.2 billion and Samsung wanted $6.2 million. Apple’s lawyers disputed one of the damages figures so the jury deliberated again Monday morning. The jury raised the award for one Samsung violation but also lowered the award for another leading to essentially the same $119.6 million decision. Some suspect that might not even cover Apple’s court costs.

CNET reports Amazon and Twitter have teamed up to make it easier to shop. Starting today Twitter users can link their account to an Amazon account. Once that’s done products can be added to an Amazon shopping cart by responding to any Tweet with an Amazon link and using the hashtag #AmazonCart or in the UK #AmazonBasket. No word on the terms of the deal though Amazon did say Twitter is not getting a cut of each purchase.

Reuters notes that over the past year Apple has hired a half dozen promintent experts in biomedicine, the latest moving over to Apple two weeks ago. Apple is reportedly recruiting other medical professionals as well. Much of the hiring is apparently around sensor technology. Most people suspect it’s related to a wearable device. Apple has trademarked the name iWatch in Japan, though apparently Swatch is not too happy with that name being taken by Apple.

TechCrunch reports Oculus responded to allegations by ZeniMax that John Carmack violated his non-disclosure agreement after he left ZeniMax-owned iD software, which he founded, to go work for Oculus on VR technology. Oculus repeated Carmack’s claim that ZeniMax shelved their own VR projects which led to Carmack’s departure. Oculus stressed ZeniMax never contributed any IP or technology to Oculus products.

GigaOm reports EvLEaks has pictures of a smaller version of the HTC One M8 called the One Mini 2. The Mini 2 does not look to have the second sensor that measures depth during photo-taking. It also has only one LED flash. Otherwise if the leaked picture is accurate, and EvLeaks has a good track record, the Mini2 looks just like the M8 only smaller.

News From You

Our top story on the SubReddit was submitted by MikePKennedy. Engadget reports teams competing at Harvard, Cambridge and California found that pumping blood from young mice into older ones led to the elderly mice developing more blood vessels in the vein, demonstrating clearer thinking and faster running. Harvard researchers subsequently isolated a protein called GDF11, which helped both the operation of hearts and brains. Before your steal your younger friends and family’s blood, remember that you are not a mouse.

spsheridan posted the Next Web article about John McAfee launching a secure messaging app called Chadder.  Produced by McAfee’s Future Tense Private Systems, the app aims to be like Wickr and others encrypting messages so only the recipient can read them. Chadder is in beta but available for Android and Windows Phone. 

cincyhuffster pointed out the GigaOm report on Mozilla’s effort to help the FCC fix the Net Neutrality problem. One solution has been to reclassify ISPs as telecommomunications providers, often referred to as Title II classification. The idea is politically impossible. ISP’s were classified as Information providers in the early 200s partly because they host email and storage, or did in large numbers back then. Mozilla’s clever plan is to leave ISP’s as information providers when managing their own systems, but classify any inbound traffic from content providers as telecommunications. IN other words split it in two. Mozilla hopes to influence the Notice for Proposed Rulemaking the FCC will deliver on May 15th.

tekkyn00b and MrAnthrpology both submitted reports of Target’s CEO resigning in the wake of the Target data breach. The Verge reports Gregg Steinhafel will step down as CEO, President and Chairman of the company and give up his seat on the board of directors. Chief Financial Officer John Mulligan is expected to take over as president until a successor can be found. Target’s former head of technology, Beth Jacob, resigned in March.

Spsheridan submitted the GigaOm report on a blog post from Internet transit provider Level 3, accusing 5 US ISPs and one European one of using market powers to interfere with traffic flow. Level 3 says it has saturated ports with 12 of its 51 peers. Six of those peers are in the process of cooperating on upgrades to alleviate congestion. The other six are doing nothing and Level 3 says they are also networks with dominant or exclusive market share in their local market. 

Discussion Section Links: Solar Wind!



Pick of the Day:  Video DownloadHelper

Hey Tom, Fascinated Video Size Guy here. Got a pick for the show that will also solve the confusion for the YouTube video download. My pick is Video DownloadHelper. It’s a free add-on for Firefox and it gives you the ability to download any video on YouTube and other video sites. But wait there’s more!!!! YouTube always stores multiple versions of videos so YT and it’s users can adjust the quality to best match their connection speeds and needs. VDH adds a button that allows you to simply choose which version of the YT video you want to download. I’ve used VDH for many years and can recommend it highly to anyone looking to download YT videos, especially people who produce a daily tech news shows :) Love the show, Fascinated Video Size Guy

Tuesday’s guest: Allison Sheridan, podfeet.com