178: Mama Needs That Pokémon


00:00:00   So you go back to your car analogy.

00:00:01   - That's terrible, I'm gonna cut it.

00:00:03   - Well, no, but--

00:00:04   - You're gonna cut it, I was gonna say bad things

00:00:06   about your analogy, but now you're just gonna edit it

00:00:07   out of existence.

00:00:08   - Yeah, I always edit out jokes that don't land.

00:00:10   That's the privilege of being the editor.

00:00:12   - All right, so we should start

00:00:15   with some follow-up as always.

00:00:16   There are approximately seven hackintosh users

00:00:21   on the planet, and every single one of them has written us

00:00:24   to tell us how it's possible to get everything to work,

00:00:26   asterisk, dagger, double dagger, double asterisk.

00:00:29   **Matt Stauffer** We got some people also writing in saying,

00:00:32   "Oh, I've had, you know, all your worries are founded. I have a hackintosh and I ran into all

00:00:37   the problems you described and it's kind of a pain." But other people are like, "Not a pain at

00:00:41   all. I got everything to worry about. You just got to follow the right guides and do the right

00:00:43   things and flash the right stuff and wait for the drivers to be updated with each update." And

00:00:48   it's not a problem. I mean, these are two sets of people describing the exact same situation.

00:00:53   It's just that from one person's perspective,

00:00:56   oh, you just do this series of steps and everything,

00:00:57   it's fine.

00:00:58   And the other person's perspective,

00:00:59   oh, you gotta do these series of steps

00:01:01   before everything's fine.

00:01:02   Like it's the same situation, right?

00:01:04   It just all depends on how you look at it

00:01:06   and if it's something that you enjoy doing

00:01:07   or something that you would find a hassle.

00:01:09   - If we could kind of pick a theme of what we heard,

00:01:12   we were pretty much correct about the trade-offs

00:01:14   about it is a pain sometimes for most people.

00:01:17   How much of a pain it ends up being for you

00:01:19   depends a lot on your component choices

00:01:22   and that if you follow these guides

00:01:24   and if you choose exactly the components they say

00:01:27   and if you don't have special needs or requirements,

00:01:30   oh, I have to make this other WiFi card work

00:01:33   'cause that's the one I have or whatever else.

00:01:35   If you're willing to buy exactly the right components,

00:01:38   if you're willing to buy all new components to do this,

00:01:40   it's probably a lot easier

00:01:41   and you'll have an easier time with it.

00:01:43   But if you're trying to get it running

00:01:45   on components you already had for other reasons,

00:01:48   you might have a harder time.

00:01:49   I think that's a pretty good summary actually.

00:01:52   Charles Perry wrote in and he had said, "Hey, you know, you guys joked about Apple Store

00:01:57   employees not knowing about the Mac Mini.

00:01:59   That actually happened to me.

00:02:01   In September of 2015, I was at the Apple Store and I told the salesperson that I wanted to

00:02:05   buy a Mac Mini and I got a blank stare and reply.

00:02:08   The salesperson had never heard of it for real."

00:02:11   So that is the thing that has actually happened.

00:02:15   That's awesome.

00:02:16   I always wonder about like the kind of training they get.

00:02:18   Like I thought every Apple, well, I used to do it

00:02:21   like they would fly you off to Cupertino

00:02:23   and give you this whole training course

00:02:24   and like you'd be briefed on Apple's entire line.

00:02:26   And it's the type of thing where

00:02:28   you're not gonna remember everything they tell you.

00:02:30   They're gonna fill your head with a bunch of information.

00:02:31   And especially if you're new to Apple,

00:02:33   you can't remember all the details,

00:02:35   but I would think that forgetting an entire line

00:02:37   of computers exists,

00:02:39   especially when Apple's Mac product line

00:02:41   doesn't contain that many products

00:02:42   in the grand scheme of things,

00:02:43   would be a thing that wouldn't happen.

00:02:45   So I think they must have dropped their training

00:02:47   open for the floor staff, for the salespeople?

00:02:50   - Well, I mean, this is what happens

00:02:52   with every retail place, you know?

00:02:54   Like, the Apple stores are really big,

00:02:56   there's lots of them and they have to hire lots of staff.

00:02:59   From what we've heard rumblings of here and there,

00:03:02   it seems like maybe they don't pay as well as they used to

00:03:04   or whatever reason, they have a hard time, you know,

00:03:07   attracting and/or training high quality staff consistently.

00:03:11   So you end up getting like, yes,

00:03:12   there are some people there who really know their stuff,

00:03:15   but a lot of them don't, because that's just the reality

00:03:17   of hiring a massive retail staff these days.

00:03:20   - Indeed.

00:03:21   All right, we should also talk about the crazy weird mouse

00:03:25   that I believe Jon had brought up last episode.

00:03:28   - Yeah, I think it was called the IsoPoint Trackbar

00:03:30   from Outbound back from the '80s.

00:03:31   Well, this design apparently lives on probably

00:03:34   because they either bought the patents for it

00:03:36   or the patents expired because it was so long ago

00:03:38   in Contour Design's Roller Mouse,

00:03:41   which is a thing that you can buy

00:03:43   for your computer today, apparently.

00:03:45   and it looks like kind of one of those keyboard wrist rest things that you should never ever

00:03:50   actually rest your wrists on.

00:03:52   It's got some buttons and right along the top edge of it it's got the little roller

00:03:56   ball thingy you can roll back and forth like a little pencil for vertical and slide left

00:04:00   and right.

00:04:01   I'm not quite sure if the bar itself slides or if it's just like touch sensitive or whatever.

00:04:05   There's a YouTube video of someone messing with it and it still doesn't quite make it

00:04:09   clear because the YouTube video's not very illuminating.

00:04:13   But anyway, this still exists.

00:04:15   - YouTube's very good at that.

00:04:16   YouTube is very good at having lots of videos

00:04:19   that report to review a product,

00:04:21   but don't actually tell you the useful information

00:04:23   about that product.

00:04:24   They just kinda like hold it up and spin it around,

00:04:27   or unbox it, and they don't actually try it,

00:04:29   or show you, or do anything useful.

00:04:31   Not that I'm complaining.

00:04:32   - Well, you need to have different camera angles.

00:04:34   Like what you need to do,

00:04:35   if you don't understand how this product works,

00:04:37   which I have some questions like,

00:04:38   oh, does the bar slide back?

00:04:39   You need like close-ups, and like macro photography,

00:04:42   and cutaways and if you can't just have one continuous shot

00:04:45   of a person sitting on a desk,

00:04:47   connecting it to their keyboard

00:04:49   and showing it's got little feet

00:04:50   and it's got little connectors, it's got little this,

00:04:51   but it's just like you're too far away.

00:04:53   I can't see what you're doing with your fingers.

00:04:54   You need a multi-camera, multi-shot edited sequence

00:04:58   instead of just one big long take.

00:05:01   - Usually when I'm looking for product reviews on YouTube

00:05:04   for a product I'm considering buying,

00:05:06   at least half the videos I find,

00:05:09   I suspect I'm the first person to ever have watched them,

00:05:12   regardless of what the view count says,

00:05:13   those must all be bots,

00:05:15   I think I'm the only person who's ever watched it,

00:05:17   including the creator.

00:05:18   I don't think they've even watched it,

00:05:20   because if they watched it,

00:05:21   they would notice all the problems,

00:05:22   or at least some of the problems,

00:05:23   like hey, you can barely hear what they're saying,

00:05:26   or you know you could have cut out this entire segment,

00:05:29   or unfortunately most commonly,

00:05:32   this entire video serves no purpose

00:05:34   and adds nothing to the world, I'm sorry.

00:05:36   - Well, some of them have really high production values,

00:05:38   where I can tell they've really nailed the lighting,

00:05:41   and it's crisp and the audio is really good,

00:05:44   but they didn't actually provide a good product review

00:05:46   because they didn't have the closeups and the other details.

00:05:49   - None of those people review microphones.

00:05:51   - Yeah, the most fun thing is when I'm looking for,

00:05:55   not specific videos, but usually it's what I find,

00:05:58   for questions I have about household stuff,

00:06:02   like how to repair a self-raising,

00:06:05   or how to repair a cordless blind-raising mechanism thing

00:06:08   or something or how to fix a flapper on your toilet

00:06:11   or whatever.

00:06:12   And if you're looking for like this specific make and model

00:06:15   and seeing how some, or even when I was doing that,

00:06:17   replacing the battery in my key fob or whatever, right?

00:06:20   Those are the best videos

00:06:21   because these are not professional YouTubers.

00:06:23   This is just a person who just says,

00:06:25   "Look, I've decided to film myself doing this thing."

00:06:28   And like they're holding their camera under their chin

00:06:30   against their chest to film their two hands doing something.

00:06:35   The camera is a candy bar phone from 1997.

00:06:38   And they're talking really weird because their chin is holding the camera while their fingers fumble.

00:06:43   And I love these people. You know why? Because if they didn't do that terrible video,

00:06:48   there would be zero videos on the entire internet.

00:06:51   I'm like, "I just want to see one other living human do this." And they do it, I'm like, "Oh, that explains it!"

00:06:55   Like, it's so much better to have a video than no video.

00:06:58   So I would encourage everybody that if you're even remotely thinking of putting a video about how you repaired the specific toilet seat that you have

00:07:05   for some specific 80s toilet, do it. Put it up online. If it has five Us, it doesn't matter.

00:07:11   If I'm one of those five, I'm like, "Thank you. Thank you for putting this online," because

00:07:15   it's so hard to find any information about certain things. And I love the fact that people

00:07:19   are doing, especially about home stuff, are doing home repairs and filming themselves

00:07:24   doing it and filming their mistakes. And I don't care that the audio is horrible. I don't

00:07:27   care that it's all blurry. I don't care that the camera is shaking. I wish there were more

00:07:31   of them.

00:07:32   I'm just saying, if you're gonna review a microphone,

00:07:35   what is the one thing that somebody watching that review

00:07:38   might be interested in that video containing?

00:07:41   - An audio sample from the microphone?

00:07:43   - Go look at, like pick a microphone, go to YouTube,

00:07:46   and search for a video reviewing that microphone,

00:07:49   and see how many you can find that actually contain

00:07:51   an audio sample of the person talking to that microphone,

00:07:54   let alone what would be more useful is maybe comparing it

00:07:58   back to back to like one other microphone maybe,

00:08:01   the one built into the camera or the phone would be good enough. Just compare it to something

00:08:05   else. Like, you can't even find samples of people talking into the mic. I cannot believe,

00:08:10   like, oh man, I'm in the wrong business. I'm gonna take over YouTube.

00:08:14   Well, I bet they show you the microphone coming out of the box. They show you all the different

00:08:18   outfits you can put on the microphone.

00:08:19   Yeah, they do!

00:08:20   And they show you all the articulations and the different points on it. It's like the

00:08:25   toy unwrapping videos are the template upon which all product reviews on YouTube are based.

00:08:30   It's probably okay if you're unwrapping toys, but probably not good for a product that actually

00:08:36   is supposed to do something.

00:08:37   It's difficult, especially for something like an input device or a chair or something like

00:08:42   that.

00:08:43   It's not actually easy to illustrate in video all the different features because you do

00:08:48   need lots of weird camera angles and camera rigs to get lighting in the right place to

00:08:51   sort of convey the… and you probably need diagrams at a certain point, like with overlay

00:08:56   on top of the video.

00:08:57   It's not an easy gig.

00:08:58   We are sponsored tonight by Pingdom. Start monitoring your websites and servers today

00:09:03   at Pingdom.com/ATP. You get a 14-day free trial and when you enter code ATP at checkout

00:09:09   you get 20% off your first invoice. Pingdom makes the web faster and more reliable for

00:09:14   everyone by offering powerful, easy to use monitoring tools and services for anybody

00:09:18   with a website. You can, for example, monitor availability and performance of your server,

00:09:22   database or site from more than 70 global test servers at Pingdom. They can emulate

00:09:26   visits to your site, check its availability as often as every minute. And they can do

00:09:30   things like check for cookies, they can use cookies to log in, they can check for substrings

00:09:34   in the site, you can customize it all sorts of ways. Now, developers know that websites

00:09:39   are becoming more sophisticated and are often made up of several dependencies. And when

00:09:43   one dependency goes down or gets slow, it affects the whole site. So you can also monitor

00:09:47   separate parts of your site with Pingdom. Things like contact forms, e-commerce checkouts,

00:09:51   databases, searches, logging in, a whole lot more.

00:09:55   Stuff breaks all the time on the internet.

00:09:57   Every month, Pingdom detects more than 13 million outages,

00:10:00   so no matter how big or small your presence is,

00:10:03   you really need to monitor its availability and performance.

00:10:06   I use Pingdom, I've used it now for, I think, eight years,

00:10:09   way longer than since they've become a sponsor,

00:10:11   and I've been very, very happy with it.

00:10:13   I use it to monitor all of my stuff

00:10:15   for the last eight years, and it's wonderful.

00:10:17   Here's what you do, you give them a URL monitor

00:10:19   and optional conditions to check for,

00:10:21   or they can just check to see if it's up.

00:10:23   When they hit an outage, you are immediately alerted

00:10:26   in all sorts of ways you can customize.

00:10:27   You can get text messages, push notifications, emails,

00:10:30   or any combination of those, or just a few of them,

00:10:32   maybe just emails for less critical stuff

00:10:35   and texts for really critical stuff,

00:10:37   and then you can fix the problem

00:10:38   before it becomes a much bigger and more costly outage.

00:10:41   You should not be learning if your site is down

00:10:43   from people on Twitter.

00:10:45   You should be the first person to know

00:10:47   so you can fix it before too many customers

00:10:49   or too many readers see it.

00:10:50   Check it out today, go to pingdom.com/atp

00:10:54   for a 14-day free trial, and get 20% off

00:10:57   your first invoice with offer code ATP.

00:10:59   Thanks to Pingdom for sponsoring.

00:11:01   (upbeat music)

00:11:03   - All right, there is another item in the follow-up

00:11:06   which I told myself I wouldn't bring up,

00:11:07   but I don't wanna get yelled at later.

00:11:09   There's a bullet that says Casey's Ongoing iMac Woes,

00:11:12   which I don't wanna talk about,

00:11:13   because I don't want the internet telling me

00:11:14   about how wrong I am about everything, so we can move along.

00:11:17   - Well, we already talked to you about it in Slack,

00:11:19   but I think we need to talk about it again.

00:11:21   - Ah, I really don't wanna talk about this.

00:11:23   - You need to bring in your iMac for repair and you won't.

00:11:25   - No, well, yes, that's actually, yes, that's the summary.

00:11:29   Is that, so how can I briefly recap this?

00:11:33   So let me put on my summarizer,

00:11:34   chief summarizer and chief hat.

00:11:36   So a couple episodes ago, I sounded like garbage

00:11:40   because my iMac croaked in the middle of recording.

00:11:43   No, it did not involve water or any other liquid.

00:11:46   Thank you, the entire internet for making that joke.

00:11:48   Anyway, so it croaked in the middle of recording, it hard froze, rebooted itself.

00:11:54   This had happened, I had noticed, from time to time, but it had never been during a recording,

00:11:59   so it didn't really make that big of a difference.

00:12:01   The only thing I lost out on was Plex.

00:12:03   Couldn't see my media files because it wouldn't auto reconnect to the Synology.

00:12:07   So anyway, so this happened.

00:12:09   Suddenly I actually need to take action on things because it affected the show, and that's

00:12:13   no bueno.

00:12:14   So I tried to figure out what to do.

00:12:17   I did a hardware test and after much cajoling from Mr. Syracuse, it showed no problems.

00:12:25   I think I might have tried one or two other things, but what I ended up doing was I swapped

00:12:31   out my Mac sales RAM.

00:12:33   I had gotten 32 gigs of RAM for this thing the moment I bought it.

00:12:37   And I put in the 8 gigs of OEM RAM, and that's what's running in it right now.

00:12:41   And it seemed to me, empirically, that it'll go about a week before it has one of these

00:12:47   locks and reboots itself.

00:12:50   And up until this morning, it had been eight days since I had any such problem.

00:12:55   This morning, I went to, not unsleep it, but the screen had slept, but the machine was

00:13:02   still on.

00:13:03   So I hit the space bar on my keyboard in order to wake the thing up, and the backlight on

00:13:09   screen came on, but I could see nothing. I ended up forcing a reboot, I did a hard reboot,

00:13:13   I looked at the console when it came back up, and it had a bazillion messages, I don't

00:13:18   have it handy in front of me, but something along the lines of, "I can tell that the GPU

00:13:22   driver is not responding, and that's probably not good." So, my hopeful and I stand by my

00:13:29   going theory is that it's the non-OEM RAM that's pissing it off and causing problems.

00:13:35   I have nothing but anecdotal evidence to go on.

00:13:39   And Jon and Marco both are insistent that I take this thing to the Genius Bar, but I

00:13:43   really, really, really don't want to, because it is a royal pain to bring it there, let

00:13:49   alone be gone, have it be gone for like a week or more, only for a Genius to say, "Geez,

00:13:54   it never happened to me.

00:13:55   Everything looks good here.

00:13:56   Here you go.

00:13:57   Come back if it happens again."

00:13:59   So I don't want to bother with it, and I would rather just deal with the 8 gigs of RAM and

00:14:03   and then maybe start whining at Mac sales

00:14:06   or other world computing, whatever they call themselves.

00:14:08   Whine at them and see if I can get replacement sticks

00:14:11   if that really does seem to be the problem.

00:14:13   - Hold on.

00:14:14   If you're gonna keep the OWC RAM out of the computer

00:14:19   and it's going to have this problem occasionally.

00:14:21   - You know it's not the RAM.

00:14:22   - What exactly do you expect OWC to do about that?

00:14:25   (laughs)

00:14:26   - But like you just said, you said,

00:14:27   I still think it's the RAM,

00:14:28   but it just froze when the RAM wasn't in it.

00:14:30   How does that even work?

00:14:32   No, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no.

00:14:33   It was a different kind of freeze.

00:14:34   It was a very different kind of freeze.

00:14:35   First of all--

00:14:36   It doesn't matter!

00:14:37   I'm serious!

00:14:38   I'm not trying to be funny.

00:14:39   Oh, God, I'm going to get so many emails.

00:14:40   You are being very funny.

00:14:41   I understand it's a different kind of freeze, but the problem is it's another thing that

00:14:46   your Mac shouldn't be doing, right?

00:14:48   Like, especially since you're not doing anything with it.

00:14:50   You don't have any weird programs that you're running or you're not stressing.

00:14:53   It's just sitting there idle, essentially, and you come back to it and you can't get

00:14:56   it to wake up and you see a bunch of GPU messages and the thing.

00:14:59   Yeah, but that was the first time I'd ever seen anything in the console. Any of the other

00:15:02   times it locked up, it was like it was running and turning and chugging along fine, and then

00:15:08   next thing you know I see, "Oh, boot time." You're grossly overblowing the effect this

00:15:12   problem has on me, with the exception of that one episode, which I do genuinely feel deeply

00:15:16   sorry about. With the exception of that one episode, it has never really caused any problem

00:15:21   for me. And I think that today's freeze was just a fluke of modern computing.

00:15:25   No, this doesn't happen.

00:15:27   That is not the behavior of healthy hardware.

00:15:31   That is not normal, that is not something

00:15:33   you should just consider.

00:15:34   You know what, that's acceptable.

00:15:35   I'm going to live with that forever.

00:15:37   No, and especially because this is gonna run

00:15:40   on a warranty at some point.

00:15:42   If you didn't get applicator,

00:15:42   it's gonna be in what, six months?

00:15:45   This is not normal.

00:15:47   This is not supposed to happen.

00:15:49   This is not acceptable.

00:15:51   Something in there is broken,

00:15:52   and it is most likely not the RAM

00:15:54   that is not currently in the computer

00:15:57   when this problem is still happening.

00:15:58   - It was a different problem though.

00:16:00   - Well, it might have reacted worse with that RAM.

00:16:02   Maybe, it sounds like there's something wrong

00:16:04   with the GPU or the logic board.

00:16:06   Whether or not it is worse with the OWC RAM in it,

00:16:10   the fact is this problem exists without the OWC RAM in it,

00:16:14   so therefore that RAM is not the problem.

00:16:17   That RAM might be a problem, but it is not the problem here.

00:16:21   - I'm assuming you googled the error message

00:16:23   because like to rule out software type of bugs

00:16:25   where it's like, oh, unbeknownst to you,

00:16:27   this version of OS X ships or Mac,

00:16:30   it's still OS X, right?

00:16:31   Oh God, this transition's gonna be rough.

00:16:33   Ships with a driver for your particular GPU

00:16:37   that is flaky in this way.

00:16:39   Usually googling for the console message

00:16:41   will land you 100 people asking the same question

00:16:44   on Apple's discussion forums,

00:16:45   none of which are actually getting an answer,

00:16:47   but then you can kind of like ballpark,

00:16:49   like, look, is this a thing that's happening

00:16:51   to a lot of people?

00:16:52   as judged by whatever ratio commands people to go onto Apple discussion forums and talk

00:16:58   about it.

00:16:59   Like for every one person you see there, there's probably like hundreds more who don't know

00:17:02   where the discussion forums are.

00:17:03   But I've had situations like this, and it doesn't mean that the software problem you

00:17:07   see other people having it, but occasionally you'll get lucky and you'll see that, "Oh,

00:17:11   actually I'm someone who knows whether I'm an Apple employee or not, and there's a bug

00:17:15   in this driver for this Nvidia GPU or whatever."

00:17:17   It's not what you have in yours.

00:17:19   But anyway, and that's what the problem is, and this software update either has fixed

00:17:24   it or will fix it or whatever.

00:17:26   So it's still conceivable that that GPU, that freeze thing, could be a software issue.

00:17:32   The hard rebooting thing with no messages in the console definitely looks like a hardware

00:17:35   thing, and like you said, you haven't had that with the RAM out, so who knows.

00:17:38   But either way, either of these things I think are a problem.

00:17:43   So maybe you kind of convinced me with your reticence to bring this thing in, maybe you

00:17:47   wait for the next one, the next freeze, and see with the RAM still out like do

00:17:52   you get a repeat of the GPU thing or do you get the hard resetty type thing. I

00:17:56   still think it's weird that the RAM test would pass maybe the RAM tests are not

00:17:59   particularly thorough and you need to run those tests that like go through every

00:18:01   byte of RAM like hundreds of times and runs for days at a time to really test

00:18:06   it I'm not entirely sure but anyway all this is to say that both Marco and I

00:18:09   have 5k IMAX and ours just don't do this so you shouldn't you shouldn't accept

00:18:14   this as a state of being and you should resign yourself to taking this big heavy

00:18:16   computer in three times, not once, because the first time you take it in, if you're lucky,

00:18:20   they'll find something wrong, but they'll probably send it back to you and say it's fine. Then you

00:18:24   have to wait for it to happen again, then you have to bring it in again, then they say it's fine,

00:18:27   then you have to wait for it to happen again, then you bring it in again, and then after they've

00:18:30   denied you three times, then you get satisfaction of some kind, or you get to be more indignant

00:18:37   about it. Okay, well let me just make a couple things very plain, because apparently nobody's

00:18:40   listening to me. I did the Apple Hardware Diagnostic Test, or whatever it is called,

00:18:45   when you start the computer and mash down on the D-key.

00:18:48   I did this with the OWC RAM in,

00:18:50   and it said everything was peachy keen,

00:18:52   everything was fine.

00:18:53   - That's what I was saying,

00:18:54   like maybe it runs like a wimpy RAM test,

00:18:56   because a full RAM test takes a really, really long time.

00:18:58   So it doesn't, you know,

00:19:00   because I'm suspicious of the RAM too, right?

00:19:02   So maybe the Apple hardware test didn't test it thoroughly,

00:19:05   or maybe it didn't trigger the problem or whatever.

00:19:07   - Well, and like with this kind of intermittent problem

00:19:09   that happened, you know, you get like a weird crash.

00:19:12   It used to be every few days, now it's like once a week.

00:19:14   Right?

00:19:15   Yeah, it used to be about once a week.

00:19:18   It has happened once, which to be fair was about eight days after I put the stock RAM in.

00:19:25   It has happened once.

00:19:26   And on the surface that looks like it's probably the same crash, but like I said earlier,

00:19:29   I'd never ever ever seen any console messages previously.

00:19:33   And I should add that it would always just reboot itself, and this time it did not.

00:19:38   It seemed like it was fine until it powered on the backlight, and then it wouldn't show anything on screen.

00:19:44   So I don't think this is the same thing.

00:19:47   - Either way, these are two different symptoms

00:19:50   of some kind of underlying problem

00:19:53   that is probably the same problem

00:19:54   with or without the OWC RAM in it.

00:19:56   So it probably is not the RAM.

00:19:57   It's probably a problem with Apple's hardware in here.

00:20:00   And normally functioning computers don't behave this way.

00:20:03   Normally functioning Macs don't behave this way.

00:20:06   Even Macs running betas don't behave this way.

00:20:09   Tipster in the chatroom says his beta hardware

00:20:11   doesn't behave this way.

00:20:13   Something is wrong.

00:20:14   Whether or not the hardware test passes or fails

00:20:18   does not say there is or isn't a problem.

00:20:21   It just says whatever that is testing for

00:20:23   is or isn't failing at that moment.

00:20:26   What that means to you is that this will be annoying

00:20:28   to get fixed, but that doesn't mean there isn't a problem.

00:20:31   It just means the problem didn't happen during that test.

00:20:33   - So an appropriate analogy to this situation is

00:20:37   my car, every great once in a while,

00:20:39   the stereo decides to turn itself off

00:20:41   and then turn itself back on. It is mildly inconvenient, mildly inconvenient. And then

00:20:46   one time, one time I was in the middle of a podcast and I had no idea where I was in

00:20:52   that podcast in terms of like the timestamp or anything. And then it restarted itself

00:20:56   and I had to start the podcast over because I just couldn't find where I was in the podcast

00:21:00   for whatever reason. That's this analogy. I am not taking my car to the shop for them

00:21:04   to say, "Oh, we can't reproduce it." Four different times, just so they can say, "Oh,

00:21:09   we can't reproduce it." I do not have the confidence.

00:21:11   - No, but there's no reasonable hope that the BMW dealer

00:21:14   would ever fix a problem like that.

00:21:15   - There's no reasonable hope in Apple, Pete.

00:21:17   Oh, God.

00:21:18   - Yes, no, there is a reasonable hope

00:21:20   that you will get some kind of satisfaction

00:21:22   from Apple about it.

00:21:22   I know, I've dealt with these problems before.

00:21:24   Car dealer, forget it.

00:21:24   If you have some electronic gremlin in your car,

00:21:26   there's no hope, like don't even bother.

00:21:27   Like maybe try the dealer once,

00:21:29   but it's not like they have,

00:21:30   they don't deal with electronics.

00:21:31   Like they can fix your mechanical parts,

00:21:33   but in general, unless there's some sort of,

00:21:34   well, we flashed it with the manufacturers,

00:21:35   latest blah, blah, blah,

00:21:36   they have no idea about the electronics in your car,

00:21:38   and half that stuff doesn't work right

00:21:40   even when it's working entirely according to,

00:21:42   you know, like it's working perfectly.

00:21:43   This is exactly how it was designed.

00:21:44   It's just filled with bugs

00:21:45   that are never gonna get fixed.

00:21:46   But for hardware,

00:21:48   like I had the same thing with a Thunderbolt display,

00:21:50   which is really weird and flaky,

00:21:51   and I had to keep bringing in and bringing in,

00:21:53   but eventually, I feel like eventually,

00:21:55   they will give you an entirely new insides

00:21:57   or an entirely new refurbished thing,

00:21:59   or, you know, like you will,

00:22:01   especially when it's under warranty

00:22:02   and it's relatively new,

00:22:03   now is the time to start going through the annoying sequence

00:22:06   because it will be worse if you just let this slide

00:22:08   and the warranty runs out and you're just annoyed for years at a time by this thing and then

00:22:13   your only recourse is then at that point is to pay out some of your own money. Do it while it's still

00:22:17   under warranty. With Apple you will eventually, something eventually will happen and there's not

00:22:21   a hundred percent chance it's going to get fixed, but it's non-zero and it's way higher than the car

00:22:25   dealer fixing something about electronics in your car. So let me just plainly state it'll be in the

00:22:30   show notes, but the actual error on the most recent time when the backlight came on and nothing was on

00:22:35   screen was Windows Server colon GPU driver appears to be hung parenthesis

00:22:39   over five continuous seconds of unreadiness that was the actual error

00:22:43   the only thing I could come up with on a quick Google search as I'm recording is

00:22:47   the stupid Mac Pro so the Mac Pro is haunting me you know what's really

00:22:51   common in the Mac Pro GPU failures yeah go figure I also consider that this is

00:22:56   my second or remember that this is my second retina 5k iMac and I'm already

00:23:02   already kind of not wanting to deal with going back to the Apple store. And it is not that

00:23:07   far from my house, don't be creepy, but I just don't want to deal with it. And there

00:23:12   are people that are in the chat, and I'm sure there are people listening to this, that are

00:23:15   furious with me that I'm not leaping into my car to get this fixed.

00:23:19   I guarantee you everybody is really mad at you for listening.

00:23:22   See, this is why I didn't want to bring it up.

00:23:24   Everyone's probably yelling at their pockets, "Come on!"

00:23:26   Whatever. I just, I have, these things have a year warranty, do they not?

00:23:30   Yes.

00:23:31   how this works. Okay, I bought this thing in like late January, maybe mid-January at

00:23:37   the earliest. I can look it up. I have plenty of time to make myself happy and let this

00:23:43   run with my piddly 8 gigs of RAM for another month and see if it crashes and how often

00:23:48   it crashes and what the story is. Because if it is as simple as it doesn't crash with

00:23:55   the stock RAM, then okay, I get different RAM. I either buy different RAM, I live with

00:24:01   it with 8 gigs of RAM, it actually is working just fine to be honest with you.

00:24:04   Except that it rebooted this morning.

00:24:05   Oh, now you see where we replaced the RAM. Like, I've only seen you replace RAM after

00:24:09   like 8 years with me. Like, they have a ridiculously good warranty.

00:24:12   Yeah, no, it's not the RAM. It's not.

00:24:15   Well, the RAM's not even in the computer. But anyway, if you're gonna let it stew for

00:24:20   another month, just like, it's gonna be kind of a pain to find this stuff in console later,

00:24:24   especially if it like gzips up the logs and everything and you have to go hunting through

00:24:27   it.

00:24:28   Just make a note of copy and paste all the surrounding log lines for each reboot.

00:24:32   Make a note of the date and the time, because if you don't do this while it's happening,

00:24:35   it'll be a pain to go back and research it later.

00:24:37   And then you can come to the Genius Bar, eventually be like, "Look, here's a record of all the

00:24:40   stuff that's happened.

00:24:41   Here are the console logs surrounding the events."

00:24:44   And you can plot them out and say how many days there were between them and all that

00:24:47   other stuff.

00:24:48   That'll be very useful for you.

00:24:49   I agree and I would suspect that there will come a time that I will have to bring this in

00:24:55   Because it's just something happens that makes me think okay. It's not the RAM and yes

00:25:00   I understand Marco that you can do a mark hashtag Marco was right. That's fine. Whatever. I don't care, but I am so

00:25:05   Not wanting to deal with the hassle of making this dance happen

00:25:09   Four or five times to get a genius that actually understands that something's broken. It's just not worth it to me

00:25:15   It's not worth it. If it's worth it to you be that Marco be that John or random listener

00:25:19   That is furious with me and thinks I'm an idiot fine. It's worth it to you at this very moment tonight

00:25:26   It's not worth it to me yet

00:25:28   And I am oh so overjoyed to read all the emails about how much more on I am

00:25:33   So just please send them to Marco

00:25:36   What's it gonna take? Oh, that's supposed to be gonna be your threshold like it at what point will you know?

00:25:42   Hypothetically if X happened that would be like that's it this thing is going in

00:25:45   I think if I see a similar crash with nothing in the console literally there was nothing in the console

00:25:52   Everything was going as happy as a clam and then next thing you know

00:25:55   Boot time if that happens again, and it happens on the stock RAM

00:26:00   Which is what's in it that will probably in and of itself be enough for me to say

00:26:04   Okay, fine

00:26:05   I probably have to take this in and certainly if these crashes random crashes for whatever reason even the GPU thing

00:26:12   thing that I saw today. If that happens consistently, some you know consistently

00:26:17   enough between today the 13th of July 2016 and around Christmas time which is

00:26:24   around the time that the warranty expires I will bring it in. I just think

00:26:28   it's really aggressive and premature to go through that entire friggin hassle

00:26:31   today. That's all I'm saying. Does that answer your question?

00:26:36   - Yeah, well, there'll be more follow up, I'm sure.

00:26:39   (laughing)

00:26:39   - I'm so, so looking forward to it.

00:26:42   - We just want your computer to be happy.

00:26:44   We want you to be happy.

00:26:45   - And we don't want to lose any more audio.

00:26:47   (laughing)

00:26:48   - He's got that covered with his--

00:26:50   - We've taken alternate arrangements.

00:26:52   Oh, God, I'm so looking forward to this follow up.

00:26:56   (upbeat music)

00:26:57   - We are sponsored tonight by Hover.

00:26:59   Go to hover.com and use code, it's not the RAM,

00:27:03   for 10% off your first purchase.

00:27:06   Sorry. - You are the worst.

00:27:07   - I know.

00:27:08   - I quit.

00:27:09   - When you have a great idea for your blog

00:27:10   or a new store or a startup,

00:27:12   you need to give it a great domain name.

00:27:14   And finding such a great domain name is easy with Hover.

00:27:17   There's no upsells and there's free Whois privacy.

00:27:20   So when all you wanna do is get a domain name

00:27:21   or email address, you shouldn't have to opt out

00:27:24   of a page after page of add-ons

00:27:25   that you don't really need or want.

00:27:27   Hover offers only domains and email,

00:27:30   so you can focus on finding a great domain name

00:27:31   and get back to working on your great idea.

00:27:33   And they believe that you shouldn't have to pay for things

00:27:36   that should already be included with your domain.

00:27:38   So like most people don't realize

00:27:39   that when you register a domain name,

00:27:41   your content information, including your email address,

00:27:43   phone number, and home address, is published online

00:27:46   for spammers and hackers to find in a Whois database.

00:27:50   And unlike most other domain providers,

00:27:52   Hover includes free Whois privacy with all supported domains

00:27:55   to keep your information confidential.

00:27:58   So go to hover.com and find a great domain name

00:28:01   for your idea.

00:28:02   Go to hover.com, use promo code,

00:28:04   it's not the ram, sorry Casey,

00:28:06   promo code, it's not the ram at checkout

00:28:08   to save 10% off your first purchase.

00:28:11   Thank you very much to Hover for sponsoring our show.

00:28:13   - Moving on, Planet of the Apps,

00:28:17   I almost said Planet of the Apes.

00:28:19   So Planet of the Apps has a website now.

00:28:21   This is the app creation show thing

00:28:26   that Apple had talked about at some point.

00:28:29   I don't remember when or where it was,

00:28:30   But they talked about it at some point, said, "Hey, we're going to do like a reality show

00:28:33   about making apps."

00:28:34   And now it has a website at PlanetoftheApps.com.

00:28:38   And so they're starting to solicit people to join up and film.

00:28:43   And apparently there's going to be events, and I'm not entirely clear what that means.

00:28:47   I don't know if it's like American Idol style casting, or if it means they're just going

00:28:50   to go to these places, but they're going to New York, Austin, LA, and San Francisco sometime

00:28:55   over the next few months, I guess.

00:28:58   So anyway, what do we think about this,

00:29:01   about Apple dipping into the TV world?

00:29:05   - It's weird that Apple's first original content

00:29:08   that it is like overtly funding is about like its own stuff.

00:29:13   It's not a fiction show, it's about apps.

00:29:17   I think that's weird for two reasons.

00:29:18   One, when you think of a company funding

00:29:21   original TV content, I guess just because historically

00:29:24   we think of like fiction, like, oh, we're gonna pay

00:29:25   a bunch of people money and they're gonna write a story

00:29:28   have a bunch of actors in a script and that's what all the other services have done to promote

00:29:32   their, you know, their headlining original content is all fiction stuff. I mean, they

00:29:38   have reality shows, but that's not the stuff that we hear. You know, House of Cards being

00:29:40   the big first one and then, you know, Orange is the New Black and all sorts of other things.

00:29:44   So that's weird. And the second thing is that it is a reality show about things that Apple

00:29:51   does and the reason I think that's weird is because in general when there's a reality

00:29:56   show about a topic, whatever it is, fishing or baking cupcakes or like whatever it may

00:30:01   be, I tend to view the reality show about that thing as not reflective of the thing.

00:30:10   It doesn't have to be, it's just entertainment, right? But I would imagine that someone who

00:30:13   is really, you know, a professional woodworker, seeing a reality show about woodworking and

00:30:19   being like, "Well, that's not what woodworking is actually like. This is a reality show."

00:30:22   which is fine, but it's always a distorted view because in reality I don't have to make

00:30:28   a chair with one hand tied behind my back or I don't have to incorporate pine cones

00:30:32   into the next project. That's not what actual woodworking is like and in reality these people

00:30:38   are cutting away and they're not showing the amount of time and I would use a different

00:30:40   tool for that. I can just imagine anyone watching a reality show thinking that this is not reflective

00:30:46   of my profession. They may think it's entertaining and it's fun or whatever, but I think if you

00:30:51   were Apple and you decided your first original content is going to be about developing for

00:30:56   your platforms, you would want it to be either reflective of what it's like to develop your

00:31:02   platform or make it look better. Whereas most reality shows make it look more difficult and

00:31:08   more fraught and just weird. I can't imagine the view you get of app development from watching this

00:31:15   program being something that Apple would be like, "Yeah, we want people to think that's what it's

00:31:20   like to develop apps for our platform.

00:31:21   I know they're going to try to spin it to make it like, look, it's great.

00:31:24   And these people are going to get rich and they're all wonderful.

00:31:25   And developing it for our platform is, is really fun, but that's an infomercial.

00:31:29   No one wants to watch that either.

00:31:30   There has to be like reality show drama and silly events and stuff like that.

00:31:34   And it's, it just doesn't seem like a good idea to me.

00:31:39   I don't see, even if it's the best show ever and people enjoy it and it's super

00:31:42   entertaining and we come to love the contestants and it's a bonding experience

00:31:45   and everything, I don't see how it's going to be a net positive for Apple, and that,

00:31:51   like, before this show, X number of people were into app development, and now even more

00:31:56   are and it looks even better. I think it'll make it into, like, more of a circus or just,

00:32:01   I don't know, it just doesn't seem like a good idea to me.

00:32:05   We actually spoke about this on today's Clockwise, which I guested on Clockwise #145, and basically,

00:32:12   I forget who was it brought it up, but somebody asked, "Hey, are you gonna watch this and

00:32:16   are you interested in it?"

00:32:18   And the four of us all basically said, "Yeah, I'm at least gonna give it a shot.

00:32:22   I'm curious to see it."

00:32:24   I agree with you, Jon, that "reality" TV is never that real or is very rarely that real.

00:32:33   I'm also curious to see how they make developing apps exciting because the actual act of development

00:32:38   is boring as crap, or at least watching it is boring as crap.

00:32:42   I think the social network, you know, the movie The Social Network did a pretty good

00:32:45   job of making it dramatic and exciting, but if you think about it, there was very little

00:32:48   actual programming going on, generally speaking.

00:32:50   It was more drinking that was adjacent to programming.

00:32:54   But I don't know, I'm not entirely clear what the motivation is.

00:32:58   I think you're right that it's fraught with peril and it could go wrong in a lot of ways,

00:33:02   but I am very intrigued to see how they handle it and intrigued to see how they present it.

00:33:08   Is it gonna be a bunch of tech bros from Silicon Valley

00:33:11   that are brogramming and being idiots?

00:33:13   I would assume not, but you never know.

00:33:16   Or is it going to be like an interesting

00:33:18   and genuine struggle of someone trying

00:33:20   to be an independent developer

00:33:21   and trying to release this app?

00:33:23   Yeah, what was that indie game, "The Movie"

00:33:25   and like that chronicle?

00:33:27   What was that one guy who did Fez?

00:33:30   - Phil Fish?

00:33:31   - Yeah, yeah, yeah.

00:33:32   Like I was riveted by his story.

00:33:35   - But it wasn't about game development.

00:33:36   Like to get back to what you're saying

00:33:37   about how are they going to make application development interesting.

00:33:42   When saddled with an activity that generally isn't that interesting to watch, like sitting

00:33:46   in front of a keyboard, you fall entirely back on what normally reality shows only lean

00:33:50   on 90%, which is it's all about the people, the characters, the stories, and only if you

00:33:55   have an activity that is photogenic, for example like cooking because people get hungry when

00:34:00   they see yummy food or whatever.

00:34:02   But even in cooking reality shows, mostly it's about the people, the characters, the

00:34:06   interpersonal relationships than the story behind them.

00:34:08   Where do they come from?

00:34:09   What do they hope to achieve?

00:34:10   It's why they're always asking people

00:34:11   what their hopes and dreams are.

00:34:12   Very, very little about the cooking.

00:34:14   And cooking is really photogenic, right?

00:34:16   When you have something that's not photogenic at all,

00:34:18   like sitting in front of a computer on a keyboard typing,

00:34:21   it's gonna be entirely concentrated on the people's stories

00:34:25   and maybe the app idea, because the audience can say,

00:34:27   "I use apps, I know what apps are like.

00:34:30   Tell me your app idea,"

00:34:31   kind of like in the Shark Tank type things.

00:34:32   "Tell me your business idea."

00:34:33   I don't want any of the details of how you incorporate

00:34:35   and how you do accounting in your business

00:34:37   and how you run your business from day to day,

00:34:39   I don't wanna put things that I can relate to.

00:34:40   So that's how reality shows work.

00:34:43   It's about people, it's about relationships,

00:34:45   it's about interpersonal conflict.

00:34:47   They're probably not gonna show a lot of programming,

00:34:49   but they probably will show here's my app idea

00:34:51   and then programming happens off camera,

00:34:54   here's a phase of development,

00:34:56   programming happens off camera,

00:34:57   here's an idea, judges look at the idea,

00:34:59   which is kind of a shame because I think a lot of the people

00:35:03   or a lot of the nerds are like,

00:35:04   I would like to see the programming part.

00:35:05   Are people making jokes like,

00:35:07   are they gonna have activities where you have to like

00:35:08   refactor a controller or something

00:35:11   and change your model layer?

00:35:13   No, they're not gonna have that.

00:35:14   We would like to see that, but we have a very small audience.

00:35:17   They can't do anything that's real programming type stuff

00:35:20   that has to be all about the personal drama,

00:35:22   which I think Apple thinks maybe is gonna be like,

00:35:25   oh, it shows these people and they're pulling themselves up

00:35:28   by the bootstraps and they're gonna become bazillionaires

00:35:30   and they have these great app ideas

00:35:32   and app is to empower the world or whatever,

00:35:34   but then again, you have to have the drama,

00:35:37   and the drama may be really entertaining

00:35:41   and people will like the program,

00:35:42   but I don't think it's gonna make people

00:35:43   want to become a developer on Apple's platforms.

00:35:46   - I know, Marco, you've been pretty quiet.

00:35:47   What do you think?

00:35:49   - I mostly don't know what I think about this yet.

00:35:53   I agree with what both of you said that,

00:35:56   you know, Casey, I agree that it is a little weird sounding.

00:36:00   I'm willing to reserve judgment until I see it.

00:36:03   It's a little unclear as to what kind of show it is.

00:36:07   It sounds a little bit like it is kind of like a Shark Tank

00:36:10   or a competition show, and it sounds like the prize

00:36:14   is VC money.

00:36:19   - Surprise!

00:36:20   - Yeah, like, I mean.

00:36:21   - Not much of a prize.

00:36:22   I mean, one of those prizes that sounds like it's a prize,

00:36:24   like make it big.

00:36:26   It's like you landed a record contract

00:36:28   like for the American Idol or the original,

00:36:29   it was like, "Congratulations, you are assigned

00:36:32   "to a major label with a terrible deal."

00:36:33   - Yeah.

00:36:34   - And you are chained into that deal

00:36:36   and you think it's a big deal when you're a nobody

00:36:38   but once you realize you're in it,

00:36:39   it's really not a great thing.

00:36:41   - I think you're right, Jon, that this is mostly

00:36:43   just gonna be about interpersonal stories

00:36:46   and depending on how well they do it,

00:36:49   hopefully they're low on artificial drama.

00:36:52   But I think it's mostly gonna be a long version

00:36:56   of the feel good videos they show before their keynotes,

00:36:59   especially WWDC keynotes, where it's like,

00:37:02   you're showing these developers all over the world

00:37:04   doing all sorts of cool things to empower themselves

00:37:08   and the people around them and showing all this

00:37:11   like cool stuff with accessibility

00:37:15   and diversity and everything.

00:37:16   If that's gonna be what it is, that's fine.

00:37:18   I don't know how many people--

00:37:20   - That's an infomercial, that's not entertaining.

00:37:22   That's great for an ad and it makes us feel good,

00:37:25   but people aren't gonna tune in week after week

00:37:26   to watch that show.

00:37:27   - Right, and so if it's going to be some kind of,

00:37:31   if it's going to try to be a mass appeal show,

00:37:34   like a mainstream show, they're going to have to have

00:37:38   almost none of the development side,

00:37:40   and they're gonna have to just make it basically

00:37:43   American Idol for apps, or basically like Shark Tank,

00:37:48   and I don't expect that to be good.

00:37:51   Just, you know, instinctively, my gut reaction is

00:37:54   I probably won't like this,

00:37:56   and I probably won't know a single person on it,

00:37:58   but that's not to say that it won't be good

00:38:02   for other people, I guess.

00:38:03   I mean, like a lot of people have asked me today

00:38:05   whether I'm going to apply to be on it,

00:38:07   and I don't think I will, because again,

00:38:11   it's like the end game here, like what's the end game?

00:38:14   I go through all this, I get represented somehow

00:38:19   in a way that their producers edit it,

00:38:21   and it's not gonna be like Tim Cook editing this.

00:38:23   you know, it's gonna be some other, you know,

00:38:25   reality TV producer editing this.

00:38:28   So, you know, if you apply to this,

00:38:29   you're gonna be handing over control

00:38:31   of how you are represented to the world

00:38:33   to somebody who is probably an expert in making TV drama

00:38:38   and in creating drama where there wasn't drama before

00:38:40   to make them origin to watch,

00:38:41   'cause that's probably what they did before this.

00:38:44   - Yeah, I don't think any one of us wants to see

00:38:45   the reality show character that we would become.

00:38:48   Because everyone has like, you have the input as this person

00:38:51   and then the reality show editor's thing is like,

00:38:52   "Alright, I gotta slot you in here. What kind of character are you?"

00:38:55   So it's like getting a caricature at the fair, right?

00:38:57   They're gonna take whatever aspect of you that they think is the most entertaining or makes the most drama,

00:39:02   and they're going to design a character with you as the input.

00:39:05   And if there's anything remotely weird about you, and there's plenty weird about all three of us,

00:39:10   we probably would not want to see the reality show character that we would become,

00:39:13   because we probably wouldn't be the one that is the typical hero that everybody relates to and thinks is awesome.

00:39:21   I would say maybe Casey would be, though.

00:39:23   He should be.

00:39:25   Because everyone seems to love him. He's the everyman.

00:39:27   So maybe he would be turned into the underdog everyman.

00:39:30   Until he refuses to take his Mac in, even when he has problems, and then it's like, no, he's got his hang-up still, I guess.

00:39:35   Exactly! Until this episode.

00:39:37   Oh, God.

00:39:39   So, honest question, Marco, and Jon, you as well, actually.

00:39:43   So, it says here, uh, crap, I just lost it.

00:39:46   "Who will be the tech experts and mentors?"

00:39:49   - Just say, this is in the FAQ,

00:39:50   we are excited to announce our tech experts and talent

00:39:53   in the coming weeks, stay tuned for more info.

00:39:55   Would you be willing to be a tech expert,

00:39:57   like someone on the judging side of the table

00:39:59   as opposed to the more participatory side of the table,

00:40:02   if that makes sense?

00:40:03   - I don't know, I would certainly be more likely

00:40:07   to consider that, but honestly the reality is

00:40:10   they would never ask me.

00:40:11   Like I-- - Oh, surely not.

00:40:13   - Not even, I'm not even close to famous enough for that.

00:40:18   not even in the ballpark.

00:40:20   I wouldn't even be on the WB version of this show.

00:40:24   (laughing)

00:40:26   Not even close.

00:40:27   And so it's not even, that's like saying,

00:40:30   would you accept it if they offered you

00:40:32   to be the new head of the App Store?

00:40:33   It's like, well, yeah, I'd probably consider that,

00:40:35   but they won't, so there's no reason

00:40:38   to really give much thought to it.

00:40:40   - Head of the App Store would be a better gig, though,

00:40:42   because even though being a judge is slightly better

00:40:44   than being a participant, it's not much better,

00:40:47   because you're not the showrunner,

00:40:48   you don't just make editorial decisions,

00:40:50   you are just another character on the show

00:40:52   and you have more free reign to define your own character

00:40:54   if you're a judge, but you will play a character

00:40:57   in that role and you won't have control

00:40:59   with the final edit, you won't even have control

00:41:01   over all the decisions that are made on the show.

00:41:03   So it is entirely like, you would be a cog

00:41:05   in someone else's machine in that situation.

00:41:07   Marco was really bad at being a cog

00:41:09   in someone else's machine, so I think he should not take it

00:41:11   even if they offered it to him.

00:41:12   I wouldn't take it just because I wouldn't wanna be on TV.

00:41:15   I mean, I don't even do public speaking for "Crying a Lot",

00:41:17   I want to be on a TV show, but I thought I could think of a lot of other people who I think would be good

00:41:22   celebrity judges like people who are

00:41:24   You know would feel that role

00:41:27   Well be not because they're the best, you know tech expert or the best mentor

00:41:31   But that's not what these things are about a reality show is about you have to have an entertaining cast of characters

00:41:35   Hopefully they have some skills and you know you like and have some stake in it and they're genuine or interesting people not just saying

00:41:41   They're all like a bunch of phonies, but that's what makes for good television. So you need

00:41:46   Different types to mix together like I would say that for example Larry Ellison would be an interesting judge

00:41:52   And that's just because he's so like

00:41:54   cartoonish the evil like the persona that is the public persona that he has and

00:41:57   Usually there's a spot on a reality show for someone to be like the cartoonish the evil mustache twisting villain, right?

00:42:03   So he could slot right into that, you know

00:42:05   We in the various messages that I'm going around slacks and stuff

00:42:10   I've seen a few developed people that we know consider applying as participants

00:42:14   Just as a lark type of thing. I haven't seen anyone interested in applying for judge things

00:42:21   but I think that's the type of thing where they have to call you but I have a feeling that the

00:42:25   People who would be good would also say no

00:42:29   so I think

00:42:30   their judging panel is not going to have the brightest lights ever industry in it and

00:42:34   It's gonna be difficult to find

00:42:37   To make interesting characters out of well-known celebrities

00:42:41   I think that the best bet is to have three or four people

00:42:43   who we've never heard of but who turn out to be really good

00:42:46   as judges on a reality show.

00:42:48   - Well, it's probably gonna be people who want or need

00:42:52   to be in Apple's good graces for Apple Music promotion

00:42:54   and VCs.

00:42:56   It's gonna be that combination.

00:42:57   You're gonna have a couple of probably B-list celebrities

00:43:01   or musicians who were popular five years ago.

00:43:05   You're gonna have somebody like that.

00:43:06   You're gonna have a couple of celebrities and VCs.

00:43:10   and that's the story.

00:43:11   Like, the judges, you know,

00:43:14   with these kind of reality shows,

00:43:15   the judges are often used to attract the audience.

00:43:18   You know, so that's why they try to get celebrity judges,

00:43:21   because they know that people will tune in

00:43:22   to watch those judges judge the apps, right?

00:43:25   And then you're gonna have VCs,

00:43:26   because they're gonna be the ones

00:43:27   who actually know a little bit more about the business.

00:43:29   I feel like I kind of have to point out,

00:43:31   the world that Apple is going to promote here

00:43:34   is most likely not the world that like,

00:43:37   we and our friends and the apps that we talk about

00:43:40   on our podcast, it's not the world that we all live in.

00:43:43   It's the entire rest of the App Store where it's,

00:43:46   well, not the rest of the App Store,

00:43:47   but it's the rest of the big money side

00:43:49   of the App Store at least, where it is VC funded,

00:43:52   it is driven by these hit-driven, usually,

00:43:55   IAP games or things like that.

00:43:58   It's gonna be that kind of stuff in all likelihood.

00:44:01   It's not going to be one person toiling away

00:44:05   to really polish the crap out of one amazing productivity app

00:44:09   and try to sell it for 10 bucks a year.

00:44:12   That's not gonna be what this show is about

00:44:13   in all likelihood.

00:44:14   It's way more likely that it's gonna be like,

00:44:16   we're making a startup that's gonna help connect people

00:44:18   to do this amazing task together,

00:44:21   and we're gonna get 10 million users in the first year,

00:44:23   and then figure out monetization later.

00:44:24   It's gonna be that kind of app.

00:44:26   It's not gonna be, you know, drafts.

00:44:28   - I feel like I have more faith in, for example,

00:44:31   a music executive's ability to judge musical talent

00:44:35   to say, "Can I take this person and make an album with them

00:44:38   that will sell a lot of copies.

00:44:40   That, I would say, is a more refined

00:44:44   and more predictable art,

00:44:44   even though it's still difficult to pick,

00:44:46   but the people who are good at that,

00:44:47   I feel like are much better at that than VC,

00:44:49   which is just a bunch of people who all know nothing.

00:44:51   In fact, almost all have exactly the wrong idea

00:44:53   about everything.

00:44:54   VC is like two orders of magnitude,

00:44:56   more unpredictable, more difficult to figure out

00:45:00   what is gonna be a hit.

00:45:02   That's why VCs throw money everywhere.

00:45:04   You throw the money at a thousand companies,

00:45:05   just hoping one of them will be your magical unicorn

00:45:08   that makes you billions of dollars,

00:45:09   but that means you're wrong 999 times.

00:45:13   And I think you're right that it's gonna be a bunch of VCs

00:45:16   and there's nothing worse than hearing VCs be like,

00:45:19   hmm, I'm gonna tell you why your business is gonna,

00:45:23   like they'd have no idea what's gonna succeed

00:45:24   and what's gonna fail,

00:45:25   especially just a small handful of VCs, forget it.

00:45:29   Like it's gonna be hard for me to take them,

00:45:31   any of them seriously.

00:45:32   Every time they make a judgment, it'd be like,

00:45:35   What current unicorns did you pass on and tell me the 999 things that you funded that

00:45:41   thought were going to be the next big thing that were all dumb ideas that fizzled out,

00:45:44   right?

00:45:45   It's a lot easier to go to a record executive and say, "Tell me all of the people who turned

00:45:51   out hits for you and how many people did you take under your wing that turned out to do

00:45:56   nothing good?"

00:45:57   The ratios are just so hard in venture capital for technology companies that this is going

00:46:02   to be comical.

00:46:03   it's easier on like on Shark Tank to come up with like business ideas for concrete things because

00:46:07   in the world of apps and you know digital stuff and software and all that it's just

00:46:14   it's so unpredictable and pretty much every idea that turns out to be really big

00:46:19   is the idea that most people hate when they first hear it.

00:46:22   Oh goodness yeah I am not looking forward to the unbelievable complaining and moaning that will

00:46:30   happen from our community when we realize, as both of you have said, that this show was

00:46:34   not made for us. One other interesting point that's on their FAQ, "Will I be required

00:46:39   to give up a percentage of equity?" Answer, those that appear on the show will not be

00:46:43   required to give up equity unless they choose to accept an offer from one of the angel advisors

00:46:48   or investors, which is just further reason to make me believe this is basically Shark

00:46:53   Tank but for apps.

00:46:54   - Well, that's good to know though,

00:46:56   'cause that means that the VC component is optional,

00:47:00   which is nice.

00:47:00   You know, that would make it a little more interesting.

00:47:03   - But then what do you win?

00:47:04   - I guess you win like prestige and promotion.

00:47:07   - Like bragging rights and now your name is out there

00:47:09   and it's easier for you to find funding

00:47:10   because you're the guy that won on the show or whatever.

00:47:12   It would be better if it was just a plain old cash prize.

00:47:14   - Okay, those accepted will have a chance to receive.

00:47:16   This is from the about page.

00:47:18   One, mentorship, hands-on guidance

00:47:19   from some of the world's best experts

00:47:20   in tech and entertainment.

00:47:21   Two, funding, those who make it to the final round

00:47:24   We'll meet with top tier VCs investing up to $10 million

00:47:27   over the course of the season.

00:47:29   Three, marketing promotion.

00:47:30   Featured placement on the app store at the end of the show.

00:47:32   Also the potential to reach millions of viewers

00:47:34   around the world on Apple platforms.

00:47:36   So that is what you're potentially going to receive.

00:47:40   Participation in the show is limited to 100

00:47:42   of the world's most talented app creators.

00:47:44   If that's you, please join us, and that's a link.

00:47:47   So that's the playing field that we're dealing with.

00:47:50   - So they get nothing, they get featured,

00:47:51   which happens to people for free all the time,

00:47:53   Granted, you don't have control of it,

00:47:54   and this is a guarantee of being featured,

00:47:56   but so what, being featured is not going to make you,

00:47:58   guaranteed to make you a bazillionaire.

00:47:59   You got the VC, which is like a monkey's paw

00:48:03   if ever there was one.

00:48:05   If you really do have a good app idea,

00:48:07   you probably don't need the VC

00:48:08   unless your business model demands

00:48:09   a huge amount of upfront costs,

00:48:11   then you're making a deal with the devil, most likely.

00:48:13   I can't imagine that the best friendliest VCs

00:48:16   are gonna be part of this thing,

00:48:17   and it's only $10 million anyway.

00:48:18   - And that's up to 10 million total.

00:48:21   So each app you're looking at,

00:48:23   if you actually have these people invest in your app,

00:48:26   how many apps are, you might get a few hundred thousand

00:48:28   dollars, which is, sounds like a lot of money,

00:48:31   but for VC money funding an app,

00:48:33   that's not that much money really.

00:48:35   - Yeah, and then like, but there's no,

00:48:38   there is no like guaranteed big like,

00:48:41   you're gonna get 10 million dollars in cash.

00:48:43   Like guaranteed, you know, here you go,

00:48:45   that's your prize in the show,

00:48:47   like getting to the end of a game show or whatever.

00:48:49   The winner will get, whatever it is,

00:48:51   even if it was just $1 million in cash,

00:48:53   I think that would be more attractive to more people

00:48:57   because who is going to read this and say,

00:49:00   "I really wanna go on this show and I really wanna win."

00:49:03   Only somebody who doesn't have like,

00:49:07   I think the reason Marco shouldn't do it

00:49:08   is if he had a good idea for an app,

00:49:10   he wouldn't spend his time trying to convince

00:49:11   a bunch of doofus VCs that it's a great idea.

00:49:14   He would just make the app

00:49:15   and he doesn't need other people to help him make the app

00:49:17   unless his idea is again, one of those ideas where it's like,

00:49:19   "I can't even get this app off of both the ground

00:49:20   until I have millions of dollars,

00:49:22   because it's kind of one of those things

00:49:23   where you need a critical mass before it becomes,

00:49:25   like Uber or something.

00:49:26   If you had the idea for Uber,

00:49:28   you can't really make that app yourself

00:49:29   because you need drivers and people to manage them,

00:49:32   and there's much more to it to even just get off the ground

00:49:34   to get a critical mass of like,

00:49:36   in one city can someone actually use my app

00:49:38   to actually get a car?

00:49:39   That takes a lot of money just to get to that point, right?

00:49:42   So the Uber is an example idea that you would need VC for,

00:49:45   but for an app that you're gonna make on a show by yourself,

00:49:48   just make it yourself.

00:49:49   So the only people I think who would be attracted to this are like, "I've never done this before

00:49:52   and this seems like a way that I can become successful faster if I happen to win."

00:49:57   And who knows, maybe it is, but I just like, that's why I think it's going to attract new

00:50:02   people and not people who already know how to make apps because why don't they just make

00:50:07   the app then?

00:50:08   Like why spend your time arguing to the Shark Tank people that you have a great idea?

00:50:11   Just do it.

00:50:12   If it's a great idea, it'll be a great idea.

00:50:13   If it isn't a great idea, it won't be a great idea.

00:50:15   mentorship and their advice is probably not going to mean that much because every successful

00:50:21   app has had tons of people tell them it's a terrible idea and every app that is a dud

00:50:25   has had tons of people tell them it's awesome. So it's a crapshoot.

00:50:29   Yeah, I would also point out for anybody who has never dealt with the role of VC before

00:50:35   that when you get VC investment money, this is not a gift. This is not a prize. This is

00:50:41   a massive obligation. You basically hire yourselves a whole bunch of bosses who really want a

00:50:51   certain way of doing things because you're taking a lot of their money. Again, not a

00:50:55   gift. You are taking a lot of their money and investing it in your company and you are

00:51:01   responsible from that point forward for providing them a large return at some point in the future

00:51:06   and they're a little bit impatient about when that is. Understandably because you're

00:51:10   taking a lot of their money.

00:51:11   So, if you take VC money, you basically get put on a track

00:51:16   where, okay, now the next step is,

00:51:18   first of all, you have to spend a slice of this money

00:51:20   setting up the company exactly the way they want you to,

00:51:22   legal fees, corporate, all this stuff.

00:51:25   Then you have to hire a staff on their time scale.

00:51:27   They are going to tell you,

00:51:28   "We want you to do this, this, and this.

00:51:30   "We want you to hit these growth targets,

00:51:31   "and you better have a plan.

00:51:32   "How are you gonna do that?

00:51:33   "And you better show us that plan

00:51:34   "before we even consider it."

00:51:36   It's a very high pressure track

00:51:40   that you're put on, they aren't interested

00:51:42   in investing in something that is going to bring you

00:51:45   $100,000 a year for the next 10 years as a personal income.

00:51:49   They don't care about that at all.

00:51:50   They don't wanna give you money out of their pocket

00:51:54   to get that kind of return.

00:51:56   They're investing in you and they want you to grow

00:51:58   as big and as quickly as possible

00:52:00   because there is a chance, as I mentioned, a small chance,

00:52:02   but there is a chance that if you do that,

00:52:05   you will get them millions of dollars in return.

00:52:07   That's how their business works.

00:52:09   that's how it operates, that is what funds it, is those big hits that come along. So

00:52:14   they aren't interested in your lifestyle business. To them, lifestyle business is a

00:52:18   derogatory term, even though that describes everything I've ever done besides Tumblr.

00:52:22   But they don't want that because that's not what their money is, you know, that's

00:52:25   not, you're too risky taking their money to just try to do that. They need big things

00:52:30   out of you and so the pressure will be on you from that moment forward to make your

00:52:34   thing big and huge and grow very quickly and take over the world and at least try to. Their

00:52:40   goal is to make you burn through that money really quickly because they want you to be

00:52:45   spending it on growth, on hiring people, on scaling, on acquiring new users or whatever

00:52:50   the case may be. They want you to be burning that money quickly and unsustainably because

00:52:54   they know if you hit that growth you can always get more VC money. You can raise additional

00:52:57   rounds if you're growing. If you're not growing, you'll crash and burn. They don't care. They

00:53:01   move on. There are advantages to the system. There's lots of things that require this

00:53:05   kind of funding to really get off the ground, but this is what they're awarding you with

00:53:13   this show. That is the path that they're trying to put you on here. And it might work

00:53:17   for you and it might not, but if you're the kind of person like me who prefers to

00:53:21   do things like independently as "lifestyle businesses" and just have things that are

00:53:25   sustainable over long periods, this is not for you.

00:53:28   I think the one upside potentially is that the only reason VCs are on this program is

00:53:33   not that they have any expectation that the winner is going to return an investment.

00:53:36   In fact, I think there'll be less pressure on the winner because I think the main reason

00:53:41   VCs are on the show is to increase their stature in the VC community.

00:53:44   Like, "Oh, you were the judge on that show."

00:53:46   And during the course of the judging, they're going to try to demonstrate how wise they

00:53:50   are and how knowledgeable they are about the market and how they can judge good ideas from

00:53:54   bad in an effort to get more people to come to them. And you know, like they're, they're

00:53:59   basically doing it as a giant advertisement for themselves to become more prominent, more

00:54:04   powerful VCs, right? And the fact that they're going to give some winner some amount of money,

00:54:08   I think there's less pressure on them because they feel like, even when this thing does

00:54:13   not give me any return on investment, me starring on this show will be that's the that's the

00:54:18   real return on investment I'm getting that I get to do this fun thing for a short period

00:54:21   of time and it will raise my profile in the VC community, provided I play my cards right

00:54:28   and end up not being the doofus judge that everybody hates or whatever, or it looks like

00:54:32   they don't know what they're doing, right? So that little bit of return takes a little

00:54:36   bit of pressure off the person who wins to say, "Oh yeah, no, whatever. Do whatever

00:54:40   you're going to do with your business." But I feel like I already got my money's

00:54:42   worth by getting my name out there on this TV show.

00:54:46   One thing I'm also really curious to see creatively about this show is a lot of the

00:54:51   challenges of app development and a lot of what makes it a really tough grind is things

00:54:57   about Apple that are bad. How are they going to frame this exactly? Are they even going

00:55:06   to try to accurately portray what it is like being an app developer, the good and the bad,

00:55:11   including the bad that is a result of Apple's shortcomings or Apple's policies or Apple's

00:55:15   - Oh, they're gonna paper over that.

00:55:18   - Like how do they paper over that

00:55:19   in a way that is at all genuine?

00:55:21   And then how valuable is the resulting show, really?

00:55:24   - Like I don't think they're gonna show them

00:55:25   submitting their apps to the App Store,

00:55:27   but they're just gonna say,

00:55:27   "Whoever wins this thing,

00:55:30   "Apple will make sure that their app

00:55:32   "gets through to the App Store.

00:55:33   "They will work privately, individually,

00:55:35   "with the winner to do whatever it takes

00:55:37   "to fix their sandboxing bugs,

00:55:38   "and that will all happen off camera."

00:55:40   And it's just like,

00:55:41   "Don't worry, when you're done,

00:55:42   "your app will be up on the App Store."

00:55:44   They're never gonna show the process of submitting

00:55:46   and getting your app rejected and then getting

00:55:48   these form letters back and trying to explain,

00:55:49   no, you don't understand, I'm not opening that file.

00:55:52   It's something in your framework.

00:55:53   Here's a demo program, sorry.

00:55:55   They're never gonna show that.

00:55:57   A, it's too esoteric, and B, that entire part of the process

00:56:00   is going to be just hand-waved away.

00:56:03   It'll just be a sentence at the end of the thing,

00:56:05   and your app will be in the App Store eventually.

00:56:08   'Cause the apps don't need to be in the App Store

00:56:10   until you're essentially the winner, right?

00:56:11   So it's not as if they need to be constantly submitting.

00:56:13   It says here in the FAQ, how far along in the development process

00:56:17   does my app have to be?

00:56:18   The app must be in a beta or functional state by October 21.

00:56:22   So that does not by necessity means it need mean it needs to be in the app store.

00:56:26   So I was wrong about that.

00:56:27   Well, anyway, that part of the process will be like.

00:56:29   It will be, if you don't know what submitting to the app store is like, it

00:56:32   will seem like it's just as simple as sending something in the mail to somebody.

00:56:36   Oh, you just submit it to the app store.

00:56:37   Like I can't imagine they would focus on rejection.

00:56:39   Right.

00:56:40   And I mean, unless they want to make that the dramatic part of the program to show your

00:56:44   app was rejected because it crashed and it looks like it's your fault.

00:56:46   Like none of it is, if they do that at all, it's not going to be shown to be Apple's

00:56:50   fault.

00:56:51   And either rejections will not be a misunderstanding in Apple's fault.

00:56:52   It'll just be like, "Oh, your app got rejected from the store because it crashed."

00:56:55   Because every viewer can understand that, "Oh, you did that.

00:56:58   That was your mistake.

00:56:59   Apple is perfect and nice and they would never reject your app for any reason, except for

00:57:03   because it doesn't work right or it's malicious or it crashes."

00:57:05   - Yeah, I mean this is the kind of thing where

00:57:08   just creatively it seems like it would probably have

00:57:11   way better chances of being a good show

00:57:14   if Apple wasn't involved in it.

00:57:16   But unfortunately, this is an Apple produced show.

00:57:20   You can look at some companies and they're able to like

00:57:22   be producers of things but still have jokes made

00:57:24   at their expense or have themselves made look bad.

00:57:27   Apple is not one of these companies.

00:57:29   Apple does not have any flex on like the sense of humor

00:57:34   about itself and its own flaws,

00:57:37   like they would never in a million years

00:57:40   produce something like this

00:57:42   that would show any part of them in a bad light.

00:57:45   So is this really gonna be watchable

00:57:48   or is it gonna just seem like

00:57:50   an overly long WWDC promotion video?

00:57:53   - We'll see, so that actually is a nice segue

00:57:56   to what I was going to bring up.

00:57:58   I noticed at the bottom of at least a couple of the pages

00:58:02   on planetoftheapps.com,

00:58:03   it says something about Prospect Productions. And so I did a smidge of digging, and I believe

00:58:08   I've come up with the right Prospect Productions. And this is prospectproduction.com, and if

00:58:12   you go to prospectproduction.com/works, you can see some of the stuff they've done in

00:58:16   the past. And much to my surprise, a large majority of what they've worked on is sports-related.

00:58:25   So just looking at the sections they have, there's a music video by James Taylor, but

00:58:32   it's the Angels of Fenway, which is a baseball stadium. There's an on-the-trail section,

00:58:37   which I figured you'd be confused. There's an on-the-trail section that is not sports-related,

00:58:43   but then there's legendary, which is about sports. 30 for 30 shorts, which is sports.

00:58:48   Victory Journal/Powerade Sports, Major League Soccer, Major League Soccer Insider, something

00:58:52   unrelated, ESPN Sunday Night Baseball. And so there's all sorts of sports-related stuff.

00:58:58   And then some stuff for the Huffington Post as well.

00:59:00   So it is not exclude or their history is not exclusively sports, but seems overwhelmingly

00:59:06   to be sport related, which I think is a good thing because that'll probably I'm hoping

00:59:14   that that'll they'll understand how to make something that sometimes is inherently boring

00:59:18   like baseball into something exciting.

00:59:21   So maybe they can make something else that's inherently boring like development into something

00:59:25   exciting which would be neat.

00:59:27   This is way easier to make exciting because it's a competition and there's winners and

00:59:30   losers and points scored and...

00:59:32   But there is here!

00:59:33   Sort of.

00:59:34   Yeah, but it's artificially a competition.

00:59:36   Eh, still.

00:59:37   It's not a zero-sum game where there's a winner and loser in the App Store like a baseball

00:59:40   game is where there's two teams face off and one is gonna win and one is gonna lose or

00:59:44   it's gonna get rained out.

00:59:46   But sports are so much easier to make dramatic.

00:59:51   All those sort of long segments that run in the Olympics where they tell you the backstory

00:59:54   and what hometown the person came from and how long she trained and she woke up at 5am for years

00:59:59   and she overcame this and one of her parents died and then she's like that's so easy to do in terms

01:00:05   of personal drama and because like all of it at the end is gonna will they get the gold medal

01:00:09   will they win will they vanquish their rivals every one of these sports has a clear like first

01:00:14   second third fourth place you know gold silver bronze app development is not like that like

01:00:19   yeah you know steve job said it for apples to succeed microsoft doesn't have to lose

01:00:23   and for you to win, only in this artificial reality show do your other app developers

01:00:27   have to lose. In reality, for you to win, you don't have to sabotage your other app

01:00:32   developers by adding stray semicolons to their Swift code or whatever.

01:00:36   We're sponsored tonight by Betterment. Betterment is the largest independent automated investing

01:00:42   service out there. You've probably been hearing a lot about them in TechCrunch, the Wall Street

01:00:46   Journal and other news outlets. Betterment makes it easier, more straightforward and

01:00:50   less expensive to invest. Betterment is built on smarter, cutting-edge technology to bring

01:00:54   you sophisticated investing and financial advice, all at a lower cost than more traditional

01:00:59   financial services. More than 150,000 customers choose Betterment's advanced advice algorithms

01:01:04   and beautiful user interface to manage over $4 billion of their dollars. This is the perfect

01:01:09   time to get started today with Betterment and saving for your retirement or other financial

01:01:13   goals because ATP listeners can get up to six months of no fees. That's an incredible

01:01:18   Learn how at Betterment.com/ATP.

01:01:22   That's Betterment.com/ATP.

01:01:25   Betterment, investing made better.

01:01:28   - Quick spot of real time follow up.

01:01:33   Listener Rob Travis has written in via Twitter,

01:01:37   and I'm quoting, "I had the same random reboot problem

01:01:41   "with a new 5K iMac and 32 gigs of OWC RAM.

01:01:44   "OWC swapped the RAM and it has not happened since.

01:01:47   not happened since. Boom! That may or may not have anything to do with my issue, but

01:01:52   I'm claiming it as fact that that's the problem. Anyway, let's move on before you yell at me.

01:01:58   Let's talk about Pokemon Go. It's not Pokemon, right? It's Pokemon, I think? Something like

01:02:02   that?

01:02:03   I have no idea. Are you trying to make us forget about the GPU freeze? Is that what's

01:02:06   happening now?

01:02:07   Yeah, pretty much. Moving on. So Pokemon Go--

01:02:09   It could be multiple issues.

01:02:11   Damn it, you too.

01:02:13   So Pokemon Go is a new kind of augmented reality, kind of not game that came out, I guess in the last week.

01:02:22   And I'm not really sure what to make of it. Have either of you guys installed and/or played it?

01:02:29   Good talk. So is this all on me?

01:02:31   I was going to say, all three of us, I would imagine that none of us have installed or played this game.

01:02:35   played this game. So the only thing we can talk about is the phenomenon that we observe

01:02:39   from the outside of other people installing and playing this game.

01:02:42   No, I've played it. Oh, you have? You have an install?

01:02:44   Mm-hmm. That surprises me. Did you play any other Pokémon

01:02:47   games? I did not. And in fact, also plugging my appearance

01:02:51   on Clockwise 145, because we've talked about this today as well, when I was in high school

01:02:56   and early on in college, I worked at a Babbage's, which was kind of like an electronics boutique.

01:03:01   It was basically a video game and software store.

01:03:04   And this was around the time that Pokemon cards were popular.

01:03:08   And this was a collectible card game much like Magic the Gathering, which was popular,

01:03:12   well, more popular a couple of years prior.

01:03:15   And so every day when I was working, at least every weekday when I was working in the evenings,

01:03:22   or afternoons rather, the phones would light up as soon as the elementary and middle schools

01:03:29   were let out.

01:03:30   And it would go approximately like this, "Brrring!

01:03:33   Hi, thank you for calling Babbages, this is Casey, how can I help you?

01:03:36   Do you have any Pokemon cards?

01:03:38   Nope, sorry, we're sold out, try again in a week.

01:03:40   Brrring!

01:03:41   Do you have any Pokemon cards?

01:03:43   Nope, I'm sorry, that was like three hours of work, was just answering the non-stop phone

01:03:48   for people looking for Pokemon cards.

01:03:50   I don't like it when people say that they had PTSD about things that are not stressful,

01:03:54   and so I won't say that, but let's just say I am predisposed to not like Pokemon.

01:03:59   That being said, I've installed the game and I can see why it would be fun.

01:04:01   Did you ever play the card game when you were working there?

01:04:04   I did not, and I've never played the video game either.

01:04:07   So this is your very first Pokémon game, and I'm assuming the only reason you downloaded

01:04:11   it is because it's so popular and you're seeing everything about it, other people talking

01:04:14   about it.

01:04:15   Yes.

01:04:16   And because you have a phone and you're like, "Hey, I can run that game."

01:04:17   Precisely.

01:04:18   And I was vaguely familiar with the premise of the game, very, very vaguely.

01:04:25   I know you have to collect these little monstery things, and like, you fight the monstery thing

01:04:29   I think. It doesn't matter if I'm wrong. You don't have to write in and correct me.

01:04:33   I'm just telling you what I thought at the time.

01:04:35   And so I've installed the game, and it doesn't tell me a whole lot more about what the purpose of everything is.

01:04:41   But I--

01:04:42   It's like the cat game. You need Tiffer to explain it to you.

01:04:44   What?

01:04:45   Oh, God. Hi. That was random and unexpected.

01:04:48   John said my name, so I appeared.

01:04:50   Perfect.

01:04:51   I summoned her. If you say her name once, she appears.

01:04:54   No, no. You say it into the mirror at night.

01:04:56   I thought it was three, but it would be wrong of me to compare you to Beetlejuice.

01:05:01   Apologies for being so confused. That was like eerily great timing. I was not prepared

01:05:05   for that, and we were not warned.

01:05:07   Well, I figured I'd replace myself with Tiff because I haven't installed the game, but

01:05:11   she has, so I quit. Here's Tiff.

01:05:13   Hey!

01:05:14   Okay, so to set you up, Tiff, since I presume you haven't heard much of what we were just

01:05:19   talking about, basically—

01:05:20   I just heard you talking that you worked in a store and there were cards and yeah, yeah,

01:05:25   yeah.

01:05:26   So tell me, what is the purpose of Pokemon Go?

01:05:29   Because I've played enough that I think I understand it, but I probably do not understand

01:05:32   it as well as you do.

01:05:34   From what I understand is that you walk around, you gather Pokemon, and they have different

01:05:40   points and then there are gyms at public places that you can go to and you form teams with

01:05:46   people and once you are a certain level, you're able to train at the gym and you can train

01:05:52   your Pokemon to get more hit points and then you can fight other Pokemon and

01:05:56   it's your kind of goal is to take control of the gym from other teams so

01:06:01   you can like at different times of times of day one team can show up take control

01:06:07   of the gym with like a really high level Pokemon if then they leave it because

01:06:11   you can't stick around you have to be at the location in order to play at the gym

01:06:15   and then so they leave and another team can come in and take control of the gym

01:06:20   also so it's kind of like a locational strategy kind of thing I don't know my

01:06:25   experience from Pokemon before was the card game my brother played it when he

01:06:29   was young because I was just a little bit too old for it I just missed it and

01:06:33   then I remember he used to watch the TV show so I do remember that so I think

01:06:38   it's kind of like the TV show oh that's right I forgot there was a TV show yeah

01:06:41   it was like a cartoon right so right right right right I forgot about that

01:06:44   yeah I mean I was playing it Marco got pretty pissed with me on the walk the

01:06:49   other day because I kept stopping to catch Pokemon and he is like this is the

01:06:53   worst walk he was getting so mad I'm like you need to chill. Nothing is worse than if you are trying to walk

01:07:01   somewhere with somebody else who is playing Pokemon Go. It was just once I mean come on it's not

01:07:06   like every walk I'm running around playing Pokemon but I was driving today

01:07:10   seeing this kid like kind of wandering on the side of the road it says right in

01:07:14   the beginning of the game like please be aware of your surroundings because like

01:07:17   people walk into polls and stuff apparently while playing this and some

01:07:21   I'm driving and I'm like watching this kid kind of like swervy walking next to

01:07:26   the road I'm like oh this kid's totally playing Pokemon go and I drive past

01:07:30   really slow he's reading a book like a real book I thought that was even more

01:07:34   strange than Pokemon go like walking around reading a real book but anyway

01:07:39   oh goodness Pokemon all right how so have you any so have you dudes played

01:07:43   yet yeah so I have and apparently John and Marco have not and it's funny you

01:07:47   talk about Marco getting frustrated during the walk because in the evenings

01:07:51   for the last few weeks I've been taking Declan on a walk and giving Erin a

01:07:54   little time to herself because she's been with him all day and today I had my

01:07:58   phone out just kind of periodically glancing to see if there were any

01:08:01   Pokemon nearby and at one point there was and so I stopped long enough to

01:08:04   catch it and I hear this little voice from the stroller in front of me push

01:08:08   push telling me and telling me basically would you get the show on the road I'm

01:08:13   tired of standing still. So even Declan was frustrated. So what level are you? Ah shoot,

01:08:19   I don't know. Let me, well, let me keep running my mouth while I look. But um, well see, I just

01:08:23   got to level five so that means I get to go to the gym. So I'm pretty psyched. Oh, you are ahead of

01:08:27   me. So what's fascinating, and all kidding aside, like whether or not you find the game to be

01:08:32   interesting or worthwhile, this collective you, what's fascinating to me about this game is that

01:08:36   it's got several different very interesting components all in one. I am level three,

01:08:40   by the way. It's got several different components that are all rolled in. It's such a noob that are

01:08:45   all rolled into one. So there's the location awareness sort of thing. And this is what Tiff

01:08:50   was talking about earlier. There are gyms and there are, what are they? Poke stops? Yeah,

01:08:55   that's where you can pick up Poke balls or you can get eggs there. And eggs you have to, do you know

01:09:00   about the eggs yet? Like the eggs? I've been told about them. What language is this? This is nowhere

01:09:05   near Destiny, so don't even start your whining. But what I find great about it is that you have

01:09:09   to actually walk to physical locations to do these things and you have to be at

01:09:14   the location for a certain amount of time so just driving around you can't

01:09:18   hit up all of these things because by the time you're driving past it and kind

01:09:22   of the flow of traffic you can't like you have to spin the poké stops in order

01:09:28   to collect the poké balls to catch your pokémon wait just to clarify when you

01:09:32   were out driving today were you trying to play pokémon to test all this out

01:09:35   not while I was driving I mean but while other people were driving like when I

01:09:39   went to Target with Tanya the other day, I was like, "I'm totally gonna try and play Pokemon while

01:09:44   we're driving," and pretend I was listening to what we were talking about. But no, I tried it,

01:09:50   and it didn't work, and so I put my phone away like a gentleman. Wow. So to build on what Tiff

01:09:55   was saying, so there's these Poke stops where you can, like Tiff said, you can collect items

01:10:00   and whatnot, and then there's the gyms where you can get into, I guess, like royal rumbles with

01:10:04   other people, and then as you're walking around, you can just stumble upon the Pokemon, these pocket

01:10:09   monsters or whatever they are. But what's fascinating to me about this is that there's

01:10:12   this real world component to it that you can't, well, okay, yes, I'm sure there's a way to

01:10:17   cheat, but if you play the game the way it's intended to be played, you can't just sit

01:10:21   there in your house and collect a bunch of Pokémon. And part of the fun of the game,

01:10:25   besides this whole gym and team versus team competition, if I understand it right, part

01:10:30   of the fun of the game is collecting all these different Pokémon.

01:10:34   Gotta catch 'em all.

01:10:35   You gotta catch 'em all, that's right. So you have to get off your butt and walk

01:10:39   around in order to catch them all and apparently the ones that are water

01:10:44   oriented I guess there's some like fish esque ones or something like that there's

01:10:48   some that you can tell are designed to or they're animated in such a way that

01:10:51   they look like they belong around water well apparently you have to go to a

01:10:55   small body of water generally speaking to find these Pokemon not to say you have

01:10:59   to go to the ocean just you have to go to like a little pond or a lake or a

01:11:01   river or what have you Tiff might have diverted our walk to go past a pool to

01:11:05   to see if that counted.

01:11:06   Yeah, I might have done that.

01:11:07   Exactly.

01:11:08   They also tell you, "Please don't look for Pokémon in volcanoes, because there are fire

01:11:12   Pokémon.

01:11:13   Please do not try and go into volcanoes to find Pokémon."

01:11:17   So the thing that I find fascinating, whether or not you think this is a complete waste

01:11:20   of time, like candidly, I never tried the cat game, I never, everything I saw of it,

01:11:25   it just looks stupid to me.

01:11:26   Cat game's amazing.

01:11:27   Shut your face.

01:11:28   And hey, other people enjoy it, that's fine.

01:11:31   You like what you like, that's fine.

01:11:33   or not you, collective you, thinks that Pokémon is interesting or fun or what have you, I

01:11:38   still think it's fascinating that it has these different aspects, right? So it has the collectible

01:11:43   aspect where you want to try to catch them all. It has the real world tie-in that you

01:11:49   have to go places in order to play. It has the team versus team, it's us against them

01:11:55   aspect at the gyms. And it's all of these different things all rolled together, which

01:11:59   is I think what makes it so fascinating and so interesting. And the tipster in the chat

01:12:04   is joking, "Hey, Casey's learning what a video game is." But I used to be a pretty frequent

01:12:10   video gamer way long ago, and I personally have not witnessed a game that got all of

01:12:15   these different pieces connected together, even vaguely similar to the way this was.

01:12:20   Except apparently, what was the name of the game that was the predecessor for this? Like

01:12:24   Infuse or... No, not Infuse.

01:12:26   >> Engress.

01:12:27   And another one of the things that I find so fascinating about this game is that it knew in the areas in which I work, for example, it knew of some landmarks that are relevant to people who know the area really well, but are completely unremarkable and irrelevant to anyone that doesn't live or work in the area in which I live and work.

01:12:52   live and work. And I was wondering earlier on Twitter, like, how did they come up with

01:12:57   these different spots for the gyms and for the Pokéstops and whatnot? And apparently

01:13:03   the same company that did pretty much all of the work for this game, whose name I'm

01:13:08   also forgetting, Jon.

01:13:09   Niantic.

01:13:10   Yeah, I think that's right. Niantic. Thank you. Apparently, Ingress was a very, very,

01:13:14   very similar game that they had done in the past. And involved in that, from what I'm

01:13:20   untold, and again, the actual particulars don't really matter. The gist of it, though,

01:13:24   is that you could, as a player in the game, submit, like, locations and whatnot, and from

01:13:30   what I've understood, they took all of that data and turned all of those points of interest

01:13:34   that were made by people playing this game, local players playing this game, and turned

01:13:39   those into the gyms and the PokéStops and whatnot. And again, the game, I don't know

01:13:44   if I'll stick with it. It's certainly one of those, like, everyone's talking about it,

01:13:48   so I feel like I'm missing out

01:13:49   if I don't also participate lightly.

01:13:51   I mean, you should hear the conversations at work about it,

01:13:53   but I just find this combination

01:13:55   of all these different pieces utterly fascinating.

01:13:58   So I've been talking a long time.

01:14:00   Marco, Tiff, John, questions or thoughts?

01:14:03   - I don't know.

01:14:04   I wanna bring up something Marco brought up in the car today

01:14:06   when we were talking was about how perfect of a time

01:14:10   for this game to be released, right?

01:14:12   It's summer, kids are off, it's beautiful weather,

01:14:15   like you can be outside.

01:14:17   It's just, it's fantastic.

01:14:19   We see a whole bunch of people gathered

01:14:21   at different locations all over town playing this game.

01:14:25   The release timing for this couldn't have been better.

01:14:28   - Yeah, I agree.

01:14:29   - Yeah, and like nothing else is going on.

01:14:31   There's no other major releases,

01:14:32   there's no major news happening,

01:14:34   no one else really has anything to do,

01:14:35   lots of people are taking vacation anyway.

01:14:37   It really is an amazing time release here.

01:14:40   And like, I just wanna say like in general,

01:14:43   my thoughts on this, having only seen screenshots of it

01:14:46   for a second here and there.

01:14:48   Tiff tried to show me how she threw Pokeballs at a Pokemon

01:14:52   to try to Poke it into her phone or something.

01:14:53   I don't know how this works.

01:14:55   It doesn't really matter.

01:14:56   - She threw them in the balls.

01:14:57   (laughing)

01:14:58   - Sorry.

01:14:59   However it works, this game,

01:15:01   just seeing what it's doing to people in the world

01:15:04   just makes me happy.

01:15:05   It's just a very delightful feeling

01:15:07   because seeing that it's getting these people outside,

01:15:10   walking around, gathering together,

01:15:11   oftentimes with strangers,

01:15:13   and just sitting and having a peaceful, fun time,

01:15:16   That in real life, in person, that is very rare,

01:15:20   to have that kind of effect.

01:15:22   And the fact that it just took off so quickly

01:15:24   over the weekend, it just boom,

01:15:25   all of a sudden everyone's doing this,

01:15:27   that's just really delightful.

01:15:28   And it is like a nice, happy human interest story.

01:15:32   And I really like seeing that.

01:15:34   - I mean, there are moms walking up and down the street

01:15:36   with strollers just like you, Casey,

01:15:37   who are playing Pokemon Go, you know what I mean?

01:15:40   Everyone is playing it,

01:15:41   and people start talking to each other about it,

01:15:43   and you notice someone else playing it,

01:15:45   and you talk to them and you're like,

01:15:47   "Oh, I just caught a Pokemon over here.

01:15:48   Did you see that one? Not a lot, a lot."

01:15:50   And, you know, I don't really care what I'm catching

01:15:53   or catching them all.

01:15:54   I don't really, but I don't know.

01:15:56   I just kind of want to play it

01:15:57   because everyone else is doing it.

01:15:58   - So have you guys put any money into the game?

01:16:00   - Not yet. - I haven't.

01:16:01   No, no.

01:16:02   You get a lot of stuff just by walking around

01:16:04   and hanging out at spots and spinning the little doodad.

01:16:08   And plus, like, you have to incubate the eggs.

01:16:09   There's a lot to do before you have to put money into it.

01:16:12   I think you had to walk in order to incubate the egg.

01:16:15   So it gives you a distance that you have to move.

01:16:18   So it kind of keeps you busy.

01:16:21   - I keep wondering, like,

01:16:22   the reason I asked about the money is I wonder

01:16:23   what the total, like the net new trainers will be

01:16:26   to use a business-y stat.

01:16:28   Yes, a lot of people are into this game now,

01:16:30   but if you are already into Pokemon, you don't count

01:16:33   because you were gonna buy new Pokemon games

01:16:35   wherever they come out anyway.

01:16:36   So those people are already, you know, this is just--

01:16:40   - Invested in the franchise.

01:16:41   Right. If you're not invested in it, tons of people who have never played it,

01:16:46   but I'm gonna have people who've never been into Pokemon before try this out,

01:16:49   because it's a thing that people are doing, it's a fun thing to do.

01:16:51   But I'm wondering if those people are going to be the type of people who put money into the game.

01:16:55   Like, I don't know how the game is structured. Is it structured in a way that you can?

01:16:58   If you're just like, "Oh, I've never played a Pokemon game, and I'm not, like,

01:17:01   too seriously into it, but it's kind of a fun thing to do, and I'll just keep doing it."

01:17:04   Can you just keep doing it at that pace without ever giving any money,

01:17:07   and you'll just be perfectly happy with the experience?

01:17:09   because that doesn't really benefit the game maker or Nintendo or anyone else particularly.

01:17:15   It seems like you can though, like just go on if you're playing it really casually. I think

01:17:19   what I'm seeing probably I might be totally wrong here, but the people who are very much

01:17:25   in competition for the gyms and they are into forming their teams. I'm feeling a lot of Clash

01:17:31   of Clans kind of situation happening here for the people that get very serious about it. If you

01:17:36   don't put in the money then you're not going to find the rare Pokemon or you're not going to be

01:17:41   able to train them to a high level that's that's kind of what I'm seeing so if you're really

01:17:46   invested in a team then you're going to feel that pressure to contribute money in order to

01:17:51   be better for your team and then take control of these gyms but I think that the casual person just

01:17:56   walking around gonna catch them all kind of situation might not feel that kind of pressure

01:18:02   yeah like all these games I mean there's a balance you can strike with how how much you want

01:18:06   people to be able to play before they put money in, how much of a timer do you want

01:18:11   to put on, whatever energy mechanic to frustrate people. You can tune a game so that even the

01:18:15   most casual player is so frustrated that they have to give up or give money, or you can

01:18:19   tune a game that almost no one feels like they need to give money. But in the grand

01:18:22   scheme of things, historically these type of free-to-play massively multiplayer games

01:18:26   like Clash of Clans or whatever make all their money from what everyone calls whales. Most

01:18:31   of the money comes from a small group of people who put a tremendous amount of money into

01:18:34   to them, sometimes in like an unethical amount of money and that you feel bad that you're

01:18:38   taking this much money from these people, right? And most people put in a piddling amount

01:18:42   of money. And that piddling amount could still be more than the $1.99 that people might have

01:18:45   paid for it up front. Like, the piddling amount might be $5 a year, but $5 these days in the

01:18:50   App Store is a pretty good price when games are going for $1.99 or $0.99 or whatever.

01:18:55   So I'm not, like, what I'm trying to gauge out of this phenomenon is long-term, you know,

01:19:01   how much money is this going to make and how many new customers is it going to make, how

01:19:03   How many new Pokemon players is it gonna make?

01:19:05   Is this gonna build so that when next year comes out with a new augmented reality Pokemon

01:19:09   game with a different name, will all those same people come back?

01:19:12   Like, are there people out there who have never been into the Pokemon franchise that

01:19:17   this is gonna bring them on board?

01:19:18   And I think there are, because I think there's a lot of people who have never been into the

01:19:21   Pokemon franchise because historically the only place you could play Pokemon was on platforms

01:19:24   that these people have never owned.

01:19:26   Like young people and old people alike, if you've never owned a Nintendo gaming system

01:19:30   at all, which then is plenty of people who haven't, especially in a handheld system where

01:19:35   most of the Pokemon games have come out. You may have never had an occasion to be exposed

01:19:40   to this, and by releasing it on smartphone platforms, a vastly larger audience can now

01:19:45   be exposed to Pokemon, and now maybe you're building that audience for the next version.

01:19:50   Before they worry about their audience, they have to get their servers under control, because

01:19:53   man, that game crashes a lot. It freezes all the time.

01:19:57   Yeah, that's a lot of... So Nintendo is very bad at online stuff. They were very late to online stuff.

01:20:04   They don't quite get it. They're not good at it, kind of like Apple. Well, Apple isn't really late,

01:20:07   but they're just not good at it anyway. And they've been doing a lot of outsourcing to other

01:20:11   companies like this Niantic company. Lots of different companies that they've partnered with,

01:20:16   or invested in, or are working with on their games, who supposedly bring the expertise that

01:20:22   Nintendo doesn't have. "Hey, you guys have already run a game exactly like this called Ingress.

01:20:27   We want you to do that, but replace all the BS you had before with Pokemon, right?

01:20:31   And you've got the servers and you know how it works and you've done it before,

01:20:34   and that seems like a good idea for a small company, a relatively small company like Nintendo,

01:20:37   as compared to, you know, Microsoft or Sony, to get this game out the door.

01:20:41   But these companies that they're outsourcing to have also never been exposed to the combination

01:20:47   of the game they knew how to run plus the Pokemon IP that makes millions of people want to play it.

01:20:52   They weren't ready for that either. So it's not really a clean win. And as you've noted,

01:20:56   The servers are often down.

01:20:58   I've seen a lot of people tweeting it that the app itself

01:21:00   has a lot of difficulties with concurrency.

01:21:05   It's very easy to confuse.

01:21:06   When the server is slow, you can induce race conditions

01:21:08   where the app is just hung because it wants you

01:21:10   to click on a button that you can no longer see

01:21:12   or all sorts of simple programming mistakes

01:21:16   exacerbated by slow server response times.

01:21:18   Overall, not making for a particularly convincing

01:21:22   or it has to be said,

01:21:23   not a particularly Nintendo-like experience for you.

01:21:25   where all you can say about Nintendo, in general, their console games are not horribly buggy

01:21:30   and broken. Their online stuff is always horribly buggy and broken. In this case, the online

01:21:35   stuff is slow and bad, and also the app that talks to the online stuff is not particularly

01:21:39   robust.

01:21:40   And yet it makes $1.6 million a day, so it kind of calls into question whether any of

01:21:44   that really matters.

01:21:45   Well, I mean, it matters in that it's not a particularly good showing for the company.

01:21:52   is a good idea and people are going to copy it, right? And there are other IPs that can

01:21:56   do similar things, right? I mean Clash of Clans also makes a lot of money and came before this,

01:22:00   but that wasn't an AR type thing. But anyway, however much money they're making, they could

01:22:06   potentially be making more if they weren't crashing and not letting people log on, you know,

01:22:09   like, or having that bad reputation or having people leave the game because they're frustrated

01:22:13   by it crashing or whatever. Like, you can always be making more money, so it is a downside. It just,

01:22:18   Success hides problems and your big success of like, "Oh, look at all this money we're making."

01:22:22   There are still problems to be had there, especially if this is the future of gaming,

01:22:27   Nintendo better get a lot better at it pretty quickly. The same way that Sony had to try to

01:22:31   catch up with Xbox Live when they realized that the way people deal with consoles now

01:22:35   is not just you plug it into your TV and you sit on your couch and the world outside your house

01:22:38   doesn't exist. That wasn't the case and Sony was later to that than Microsoft was and Nintendo was

01:22:44   was later than all three of them. So anyway, I think Nintendo has a lot of work to do.

01:22:51   These partnering deals are a fast way for them to get a game out that they couldn't

01:22:54   develop on their own because they don't have the expertise, but it also means that these

01:22:57   other companies get a lot of the money. Some people have been tweeting the various breakdowns

01:23:00   of like, well, 30% goes to Apple and X% goes to the developer and then the leftover 10%

01:23:05   goes to Nintendo. I don't know if that was a legit figure to someone trying to do like,

01:23:09   you know, guestimations, but like the upshot of the tweet was that Apple is making more

01:23:14   money from this game than Nintendo is, which is also not a great situation for Nintendo.

01:23:18   So I'm happy to report I've just caught an Eevee and a Pidgey as I was sitting here.

01:23:22   They were on my desk. How the heck do you have all these Pokémon?

01:23:26   Everyone has these Pokémon at their house. We have like a dead zone. There is nothing

01:23:29   around here. Generally speaking, I have not seen one at

01:23:32   the house, but apparently they were sitting on my desk. Who knew?

01:23:35   Wait, maybe they're the ones breaking your iMac.

01:23:37   It very well could be.

01:23:39   Sneaky bastards.

01:23:41   I'd also like to publicly complain that after all the time I spent on Ramp Champ, I should be way better at catching these stupid Pokémon with my stupid Pokéballs than I really am.

01:23:52   Is it possible that maybe, because we have a dog and you don't, maybe there's a reason why we don't have any Pokémon left around the house?

01:24:00   We have deer and weird animals all over the place. Come on. We should have some Pokémon.

01:24:05   I'm just saying maybe we did have Pokemon and then Hopps found them and now we don't have Pokemon

01:24:08   It's all the people that live in the cities

01:24:10   All they had to do is sit on their couch and there's just like pokestops and everything

01:24:13   You can like reach virtually anywhere and it's so frustrating. We have to like go places

01:24:18   Everything's in Yonkers. I don't know what the heck's going on. Oh, man, that's awesome

01:24:23   So, I don't know I I just think it's really cool the bits and pieces they put together and the timing to your guys's point

01:24:30   earlier, the timing of all this. And I've heard plenty of stories of people from

01:24:36   all different walks of life coming together and bonding over this really

01:24:41   kind of silly game. And like I said, you know, certainly at work it's made

01:24:45   quite the splash. And I know that people were going to lunch and the

01:24:50   driver of the car like handed her phone to one of the passengers. So the

01:24:55   passenger was like spinning the little disk thing on the pokey stops for

01:24:59   both himself and the driver, and then there's a little lake right by where I work, don't

01:25:04   be creepy, and people are going on long walks around the lake to catch Pokémon over lunch

01:25:08   break.

01:25:09   Like, it's surprising how much effect this silly little game has had so quickly.

01:25:13   And I'm also a little surprised, Jon, that you haven't at least tried it yet.

01:25:16   But I don't know, do you plan to, Jon?

01:25:18   No, I'm not into Pokémon games.

01:25:20   They're not my thing, like, so the AR aspect of it is not enough to make me get into Pokémon.

01:25:25   It's not like I dislike the AR part.

01:25:27   I would be more likely to play an AR game with a different property attached to a different

01:25:31   type of game.

01:25:32   I don't just land into Pokemon.

01:25:33   So no, I doubt I'll ever play it.

01:25:34   But you have so many nice places to walk where you live, Jon.

01:25:37   Like it's so easy.

01:25:38   You could just kind of go on a little family trot and you could all catch some Pokemon

01:25:41   together.

01:25:42   It'd be great.

01:25:43   I considered having my kids play it and like seeing if they get into it because, you know,

01:25:48   I don't have to be playing it.

01:25:49   I can just be with them on the walk.

01:25:50   Although Marco tells me that's not a fun thing to do.

01:25:52   No, don't do that.

01:25:54   I did hand my phone to Adam when Marco was getting mad

01:25:57   while he was sitting in the stroller.

01:25:58   I'm like, all right, you need to look at this

01:25:59   and tell me if you see any little animals popping up

01:26:02   and then you need to tell mommy.

01:26:04   (laughing)

01:26:05   I tried to put him to work, but you know,

01:26:08   what you gonna do, he's four.

01:26:09   - So in the olden days, people would put their kids to work

01:26:12   like plowing a field or something, and this is what we do.

01:26:15   - No, no, just, yeah.

01:26:16   - Get to work, catch some Pokemon from mama.

01:26:18   Mama needs that Pokemon.

01:26:19   (laughing)

01:26:21   making your kids Goldfarm and free-to-play massively multiplayer games. That's next.

01:26:26   All right. I think we're probably good here.

01:26:29   All right. So thank you very much to our sponsors this week, Betterment, Hover, and Pingdom.

01:26:34   And thank you very much to Tiff for joining us.

01:26:36   Thanks, guys. It's always a pleasure.

01:26:39   Anyway, all right. Thanks, everyone, and we'll talk to you next week.

01:26:41   [music]

01:26:48   Cause it was accidental Oh it was accidental

01:26:55   John didn't do any research Marco and Casey wouldn't let him

01:26:59   Cause it was accidental It was accidental

01:27:05   And you can find the show notes at ATP.fm And if you're into Twitter

01:27:13   You can follow them at C-A-S-E-Y-L-I-S-S

01:27:19   So that's Casey List M-A-R-C-O-A-R-M

01:27:23   Auntie Marco Arment S-I-R-A-C

01:27:29   USA, Syracuse It's accidental

01:27:34   They didn't mean to Accidental

01:27:39   Tech by Cas, so long

01:27:43   Is there anything fun in the neutral world?

01:27:47   Uh, has there been any scandals?

01:27:51   Volkswagen, Tesla? There have been autopilot, or whatever they call it,

01:27:55   issues. I don't know the details of any of these other crashes, but

01:27:59   it's pretty clear to me that this is not

01:28:03   intended to be a "don't pay attention to what's going on in front of you"

01:28:07   sort of autopilot. You had a really great post about this a little while ago, Marco.

01:28:11   I don't see why these are happening all the time,

01:28:15   unless these are human failings on top of computer failings.

01:28:19   I don't know, I feel like this is kind of a non-story.

01:28:21   - That's, I mean, the main conclusion here so far

01:28:26   is that we don't really know enough yet

01:28:28   about any of these accidents to really know

01:28:31   whether the system was at fault

01:28:32   or whether the person was at fault.

01:28:34   The big one that came out two weeks ago,

01:28:36   whenever that was, where the guy hit the truck,

01:28:39   went under the truck.

01:28:41   That one, allegedly he was watching Harry Potter,

01:28:45   like the movie, instead of watching the road.

01:28:48   So you could argue that the system

01:28:50   should have seen the truck and stopped,

01:28:52   but the fact that the driver might not have been

01:28:55   even looking at the road at all,

01:28:57   I think kind of excuses the system to some degree

01:28:59   from the fault of that particular accident.

01:29:01   But the main problem here is that the system

01:29:06   is not fully autonomous driving.

01:29:09   It is not a self-driving car.

01:29:12   And people keep kind of trying to treat it like one,

01:29:15   and that's just irresponsible.

01:29:16   It is basically advanced cruise control.

01:29:20   You wouldn't, like if people did the same thing

01:29:23   with cruise control, or if they just stopped paying

01:29:25   attention and started watching a movie with cruise control,

01:29:26   which I'm sure people have done and have gotten

01:29:28   in accidents as a result of,

01:29:30   that's not a problem with the cruise control.

01:29:34   That's a problem with the people.

01:29:36   And the autopilot is not a direct comparison there

01:29:40   because first of all, I do think that it has been named

01:29:44   and marketed in such a way to imply that it's smarter

01:29:47   and more capable than it really is.

01:29:48   But the fact is, it still requires you to pay attention.

01:29:51   And they tell you that.

01:29:54   When you turn it on, it tells you that in the dash.

01:29:57   It measures how much, I think it's measuring resistance

01:29:59   on the steering wheel 'cause when it's on,

01:30:01   it steers for you.

01:30:03   and if you steer in a way that it wouldn't have

01:30:07   by more than like a certain amount of degrees

01:30:10   of turning the wheel, it deactivates itself

01:30:12   and it beeps to tell you it's off.

01:30:14   So it has a way to measure the turning of the wheel

01:30:17   and the resistance that you're putting on the wheel

01:30:19   and as far as I can tell, it's using that

01:30:21   to determine whether your hands are on the wheel or not.

01:30:23   So if you don't provide any resistance for a while,

01:30:25   it will yell at you and gradually slow down and stop

01:30:28   if you don't intervene.

01:30:30   Anyway, the system isn't a really weird

01:30:34   kind of like Uncanny Valley kind of thing.

01:30:37   Not the Uncanny Valley technically,

01:30:38   but like that kind of concept where like,

01:30:40   it's so good, it's so autonomous that

01:30:44   it kind of encourages you, not directly, not verbally,

01:30:49   it doesn't come out and say it, but like,

01:30:51   you are kind of encouraged to stop paying attention

01:30:53   because you just kind of see like,

01:30:54   you know what, my input's not really needed here for a while

01:30:57   But it's not good enough that you actually can stop

01:31:00   paying attention responsibly and safely for very long,

01:31:03   if any time at all.

01:31:05   And some people are being completely idiots with it

01:31:08   and like getting in the back seat with it on something.

01:31:11   I don't know, those people are crazy.

01:31:12   I mean, that is not at all safe,

01:31:14   and nobody should do that 'cause you're gonna kill somebody.

01:31:16   But the design of the system is such that

01:31:18   the system is not really helping because like,

01:31:21   it is a little bit too smart for a system

01:31:25   that people are supposed to be still paying attention

01:31:28   to the road while using it, but again,

01:31:29   it's not smart enough that you actually can't stop.

01:31:31   So it's in this weird kind of gray area,

01:31:33   and I also, as I said in my post,

01:31:36   I think it should not be allowed on side roads.

01:31:41   I think it should only be allowed on interstates

01:31:42   and maybe on other divided highways.

01:31:45   Right now, you can enable it on any road,

01:31:47   and the only thing is that when it is not

01:31:49   on what it detects as being a divided highway or interstate,

01:31:53   it limits itself to five miles per hour

01:31:56   over the posted speed limit signs.

01:31:58   So you can still use it,

01:31:59   you just can't speed by more than five.

01:32:01   So that's not really that much of a limit, really,

01:32:04   and it prevents what people were initially doing

01:32:06   when it first came out and people were being all crazy,

01:32:08   trying to use it like going really fast

01:32:10   on twisty side roads.

01:32:11   That was also really dumb and dangerous,

01:32:14   but I think it needs more restrictions

01:32:17   because, as I said in my post,

01:32:19   it doesn't read like red lights or stop signs

01:32:23   or anything like that, so the usefulness of it

01:32:25   on side roads is pretty limited anyway.

01:32:28   It really should only be allowed on interstates,

01:32:30   in my opinion.

01:32:31   - It takes a certain kind of person to know all that,

01:32:35   I presume, all these people know about the system,

01:32:37   and yet still to be so, I don't know,

01:32:41   to wish a technology into existence

01:32:43   that doesn't actually exist, or to,

01:32:45   'cause from my perspective, if you know

01:32:49   that you may be asked to take over control

01:32:51   the car loses track of the road, right? You know that, like intellectually, I bet all

01:32:55   these people understand that about the autopilot thing, because it tells you on the screen,

01:32:59   and like they these are probably, you know, Tesla owners who know all about it, like most

01:33:02   Tesla owners are into their cars, because it's a very rare car, it's an expensive car,

01:33:06   you're not just find yourself owning a Tesla, right? Everything makes me think that these

01:33:10   people know that they will be asked to take over control if, you know, something goes

01:33:15   wrong. And I know, because of my personality type, if I was driving in a car where I knew

01:33:20   that I would have to be asked to take over if something went wrong, you don't know when

01:33:23   that's going to be. That's the nature of the event. You don't know, okay, in five minutes

01:33:28   you're going to be asked to take over. It could be at any second. How do you know when

01:33:31   it is that you will be asked to take over? How do you know when you will decide that

01:33:35   you need to take over because a kid ran out into the road and the system didn't see him

01:33:39   or whatever, you know, whatever thing, like the truck that the guy went under. The only

01:33:43   way you will know is if you are always continually paying attention. You can't stop paying attention

01:33:48   for a second just like regular driving because you don't know when that event will come. So it seems

01:33:53   to me that there should be zero change in behavior when driving with the system. But as Margo said,

01:33:59   that's not how people act. And somehow they're able to square the idea that they may be asked to take

01:34:03   over at any second with the idea that they don't have to pay attention because it seems like they'll

01:34:07   never be asked. But you know you might be asked, but it seems like you won't be. And I haven't been

01:34:11   asked for a long time. So your brain decides, you know what? I'm never going to be asked to take

01:34:15   over everything will be fine and then you get your head chopped off by a semi right like and then you

01:34:19   think then you think you can watch a movie right and maybe that's just like a trap for people's

01:34:24   brains where they're like i know intellectually that i may be asked to take over control at any

01:34:28   moment but my lizard brain is telling me that i haven't been asked to do anything with this

01:34:33   car for the last hour and i just cannot sustain the attention right whereas if you're a paranoid

01:34:39   person like me and you'd be like it's been an hour since i've been asked to take over it's you know

01:34:44   it's going to happen at any second, right? You know, like you're just becoming more and more

01:34:47   paranoid. But regular people, I think, are just, that is the signal for you to stop paying attention

01:34:51   and for you to think, you know what, I can probably play a card game. I can watch a movie.

01:34:55   Like, they tell me I'm going to be asked to take over, but you know what, maybe they're just

01:34:58   low-balling it because of lawyers. It's probably better than I think it is. I'll probably be fine

01:35:03   now I'm decapitated. Like, it's not, you know, so I agree with Marco that like, until you, like,

01:35:10   this may be a trap for human nature. This may be a set of rules that is not compatible with

01:35:17   the way humans work, right? So you have to say, "Look, you've got to steer, and everything else

01:35:24   is like radar control, cruise control, and then there's a gap, and then we do full autonomous."

01:35:29   Because I'm not sure that maybe habits will change if this becomes widespread, but I'm not sure that

01:35:38   this particular set of features will survive both the lawyers and the public perception

01:35:43   long enough for people to change their habits and it could be that changing habits is not

01:35:48   sufficient and this is just it's human nature you're going to stop paying attention if you

01:35:51   haven't been asked to do anything in the car for an hour and that's when you're going to die.

01:35:54   I would never enable this feature by the way I would do radar cruise control because if cruise

01:35:59   control like you're like oh well cruise control is the same thing you don't have to do anything

01:36:02   for hours no you still have to steer even on the road you still have to steer a little bit and

01:36:06   if you're going 70 miles an hour and you don't make that tiny steering input, very shortly you

01:36:11   will be in a ditch, right? You have to be paying attention, right? And just that little bit of

01:36:15   realizing this huge hurtling hunk of metal is under my control and even though I don't have to

01:36:20   do much, I have to do something that is enough to keep the tiny sort of subconscious, even if it's

01:36:25   not like fully conscious like I'm really paying attention, this sort of subconscious driving and

01:36:29   that subconscious driving if a semi pulls in front of you, you will notice like because your eyes are

01:36:33   They're outgoing out the windshield,

01:36:36   looking at the road, not looking at Harry Potter.

01:36:38   - And that's the thing, like, as I said in my post,

01:36:40   like the difference between,

01:36:42   the difference in usefulness to the driver

01:36:44   between the radar cruise control that you get also

01:36:48   and the auto steer autopilot mode is,

01:36:51   like the auto steer doesn't really make it

01:36:53   that much nicer for the driver.

01:36:55   Like, you get the vast majority of the value

01:36:58   of these features with just the cruise control part of it,

01:37:01   the radar cruise control, 'cause it will stop

01:37:03   and go, it'll maintain proper distance,

01:37:05   it uses all the same hardware as far as I know

01:37:07   like to do this, it is a very advanced system.

01:37:11   Like I've tried the one in Tif's car, it's a 3 Series,

01:37:15   I tried the adaptive cruise on that a few times

01:37:16   on a few trips and it's almost as good but not as good.

01:37:20   The Tesla adaptive cruise is really good, it is amazing.

01:37:23   And the BMW one, I had a couple of little

01:37:27   unsettling incidents where like the car

01:37:29   would start accelerating hard in traffic

01:37:31   and there was still a car in front of us,

01:37:33   and I had to like override it,

01:37:34   "Wait, wait, stop!" and brake.

01:37:36   That has not happened once in the Tesla,

01:37:37   and I've used it way more in the Tesla.

01:37:39   It is a really amazing system

01:37:42   for the adaptive cruise control.

01:37:45   The autopilot, on the other hand,

01:37:46   is, or the auto steer part of it, is scary,

01:37:50   and I use that a lot, too.

01:37:51   I've been using it more even since I published that post.

01:37:54   You just kind of get an idea of like,

01:37:56   did I have the wrong impression?

01:37:57   Do I just need more time with it

01:37:59   to really get to know it better?

01:38:00   And so far, no, I don't need more time to get to know it better.

01:38:05   I still do use it on the highway here and there,

01:38:08   but I still can't trust it because sometimes it does things

01:38:15   that I consider dangerous.

01:38:17   And whether, academically, it is dangerous or not,

01:38:19   I don't know, but just things like getting too close

01:38:22   to the edge of the lane when there's a car

01:38:23   right on the other side or a barrier on the other side,

01:38:25   like, it does not keep you centered perfectly.

01:38:29   It tries to, it's doing some kind of smoothing, I think,

01:38:32   where it tries to not jerk you too hard

01:38:34   to keep you centered, so it kinda smooths you over.

01:38:37   And so you kinda drift toward the lines

01:38:39   and then drift back from the line.

01:38:41   It's a little unsettling a lot of times

01:38:44   where I will get a little too close to things,

01:38:46   and especially if there's a car next to you

01:38:49   in the lane next to you that is too close

01:38:52   to the line on their side, it'll still drift near that line.

01:38:56   I don't know how it's detecting that.

01:38:57   If it's just the ultrasonic sensors on the side,

01:39:00   it might not be, it might be too far to detect it,

01:39:02   which would be a little unsettling.

01:39:03   It's not, it's a system that makes me nervous

01:39:07   whenever it's on.

01:39:08   It also does things like, you know,

01:39:11   when I'm driving on a multi-lane highway,

01:39:13   no matter what speeds we are going,

01:39:17   I will not hang out in somebody's blind spot.

01:39:19   I will speed up or slow down so that I am not like

01:39:23   right next to another car in the next lane over

01:39:26   or like right, you know, slightly behind them

01:39:27   in their blind spot.

01:39:28   I will not hang out there because I know,

01:39:30   like, you know, you develop these skills

01:39:32   as a responsible driver over time,

01:39:33   you start realizing like, okay, well,

01:39:35   I should minimize the chances that I'm going to get hit.

01:39:39   You know, so like, and even if I can legally stay

01:39:42   right here in this person's blind spot for a while,

01:39:45   I shouldn't do that because they could merge

01:39:48   and not see me if I hang out here for a while.

01:39:50   That's not good, so I won't do it.

01:39:52   The auto steer and auto drive,

01:39:54   they don't have that kind of intelligence.

01:39:56   They will not do things like that to avoid

01:39:59   possible accidents that haven't started to happen yet.

01:40:02   They won't minimize the chance of danger.

01:40:04   They'll just happily go, and you might be hanging out

01:40:07   in somebody's blind spot for 10 minutes

01:40:08   and not even know it.

01:40:09   It does kind of create this expectation

01:40:12   that it's gonna be super safe and awesome

01:40:15   and is the best thing to use,

01:40:17   and you don't have to pay attention,

01:40:18   but I don't know how many of those things are true,

01:40:21   and I suspect not all of them.

01:40:23   - You're wise to get nervous too,

01:40:25   because, again, when you're surrendering control to the car

01:40:28   and it's getting close to the edge of the lane,

01:40:29   what you know and that the car is not currently designed

01:40:33   to have any awareness of is that you have just come

01:40:37   fractions of a second closer to you getting into an accident.

01:40:42   Right, because so if there is some erroneous steering input

01:40:45   or the car gets confused for a moment,

01:40:47   fractions of a second matter.

01:40:48   And you being in the middle of the lane

01:40:50   and the car suddenly lurches a foot to the left,

01:40:52   if you're paying attention as you should be,

01:40:54   your reaction time is probably enough to keep you in the lane.

01:40:56   You riding the line and you're paying attention

01:40:59   and the car alert is to the left,

01:41:01   it could be that your reaction time,

01:41:02   even if you're paying 100% attention,

01:41:05   your reaction time is not sufficient to get your car

01:41:08   before it hits the guardrail

01:41:09   or runs into a bridge abutment or who knows what else.

01:41:12   Like, as you get closer to the edge at high speed,

01:41:14   things happen really fast.

01:41:15   Human reaction time is only so fast.

01:41:17   There's a reason we don't ride the edges of the lanes

01:41:20   because we know that our own reaction time is not sufficient.

01:41:22   reason we don't ride, unless we're real jerks, within a foot of someone else's bumper, because

01:41:27   we know our reaction time is not fast enough at 80 miles an hour to make that stop, no

01:41:32   matter how slowly the person in front of us stops.

01:41:34   You can do the little timings, how long does it take for you to move your foot over to

01:41:38   the brake pedal, start pressing it down?

01:41:42   Distances get covered very quickly at high speeds, so the highway is exactly the spot

01:41:45   where you wouldn't want that to happen.

01:41:47   You keep saying, "I think it's safer to have it on this highway than the side roads."

01:41:50   At least the side roads, you're going at slower speeds.

01:41:52   So if it does make a mistake, you can correct it.

01:41:53   - Relative speeds though, like the person hitting you

01:41:56   on the highway is probably gonna hit you

01:41:58   at a relative speed of like five miles an hour.

01:42:00   - Well, it's not that it's not the hitting you,

01:42:01   it's you hitting bridge or buttons,

01:42:02   you going off the ditch.

01:42:03   - Yeah, yeah. - That's the type of thing.

01:42:04   Or you going under a semi or whatever.

01:42:06   It's all moving vehicle versus stationary hazard,

01:42:09   whether that stationary hazard is a truck crossing over

01:42:11   or whatever, whereas everything being at slower speed.

01:42:14   Anyway, I would never enable it.

01:42:19   Because like as it starts to bring you

01:42:20   towards the edge of the lane,

01:42:21   you're like, "Wait a second, I would never do this

01:42:24   if I was driving the car because I know

01:42:25   that my reaction time is not fast enough.

01:42:27   Like, why would I be riding the edge?

01:42:29   Even if it's just like debris that's gonna pop a tire

01:42:31   and like pull me off the side."

01:42:32   And that's taking out of the equation the idea

01:42:34   that the car might suddenly get confused

01:42:36   and turn in a weird direction

01:42:38   or start accelerating or decelerating.

01:42:39   Like, that's just me driving the car

01:42:42   under my complete control.

01:42:43   I wouldn't ride the edge of the line

01:42:44   because I know that's dumb.

01:42:45   And you know, we're coming up on a bridge now

01:42:47   and I'm gonna take off my side mirror.

01:42:49   Like, I wouldn't do that.

01:42:50   and to let a car do it, and to know that during that time,

01:42:54   the car is still in control and can do something weird,

01:42:58   it's just a terrible idea to deal with the system at all.

01:43:01   Like drive your car or don't drive your car.

01:43:03   And currently we don't have the option

01:43:04   of not driving your car, so just drive your car.

01:43:07   [door closes]