41: Penny Wise, Pound Foolish


00:00:00   Someone says, Syracuse sounds really nasal.

00:00:02   Yeah, welcome to the show.

00:00:08   We used a different version of the theme song last week.

00:00:12   And so our friend of the show, Jonathan Mann, that's M-A-double-N, who's the guy who

00:00:17   wrote the initial theme song and the slightly beloved bleeps and bloops version, which is

00:00:23   the one that Jon likes but nobody else does.

00:00:26   He took it upon himself to write a new version and we sprinkled that into the show, or I

00:00:29   I should say Marco sprinkled that into the show.

00:00:31   Did you hear apparently on the After Dark for this week's Back to Work,

00:00:35   Merlin Mann, our friend Merlin, covered it briefly and said he was working on a full cover.

00:00:40   I'm very much looking forward to hearing that, because the brief part that he did sounded really good.

00:00:45   [MUSIC]

00:00:54   Hey Merlin, you should finish that up and we will play it.

00:00:57   Which of course does nothing for you.

00:01:00   This is like, you should work for free for exposure.

00:01:04   He does this, sometimes he does style parodies, like he did a lot of that with the Male Chimp

00:01:08   [music]

00:01:10   But anyway, if Marilla's listening and he's doing a style parody, I would like to request

00:01:19   an REM style parody.

00:01:21   You can do like, you know, Murmurs or Fables or REM.

00:01:25   [Music]

00:01:28   It's right in his wheelhouse.

00:01:29   Speaking of working for exposure, well, we should get to the penny arcade thing, but first we have some follow-up.

00:01:34   Who wants to talk about PhotoStream?

00:01:36   Not it.

00:01:37   Jon, follow-up defaults to you.

00:01:39   Alright, I mean, like, we keep talking about PhotoStream, and I don't even remember where this link came from, but...

00:01:45   Oh yeah, Dave, whose last name I won't attempt to pronounce because he can't agree on how he wants people to pronounce his last name, but it starts with a "CH".

00:01:52   I think it's "Chardier". I think that's safe.

00:01:54   I think that's safe.

00:01:55   He changes his mind.

00:01:56   I've heard him change his mind.

00:01:57   Anyway, he posted a link to this Knowledge Base article

00:02:00   that looks like-- that is recent.

00:02:02   It has a recent date on it.

00:02:03   And it looks like it's in response

00:02:05   to confusion about PhotoStream.

00:02:08   And the relevant passage here, it

00:02:11   provides some information that previously was not provided

00:02:14   by any of the other documents.

00:02:15   And it's not information about how PhotoStream works.

00:02:18   It's information about motivations.

00:02:21   And that, I think, is what a lot of people are missing.

00:02:23   because you can explain all these rules

00:02:25   and give out all these numbers

00:02:26   and put all these facts about it,

00:02:28   but it's like, but why, why?

00:02:29   What are you trying to do with PhotoStream?

00:02:30   So here's the important sentence.

00:02:32   The photos that you upload to my PhotoStream

00:02:34   are stored in iCloud for 30 days

00:02:36   to give your devices plenty of time

00:02:37   to connect to iCloud and download them.

00:02:40   That's the key piece of missing information

00:02:41   that I think is leading to a lot of confusion.

00:02:43   What's the point of PhotoStream?

00:02:45   It's there to get your photos somewhere

00:02:48   that's not an individual device for 30 days

00:02:50   so all your other devices can pull the stuff down.

00:02:53   So all those limits and the numbers and everything

00:02:55   or whatever don't matter because bottom line is

00:02:57   it's supposed to just be a temporary holding pen

00:02:59   for your stuff and it's supposed to stay there long enough

00:03:02   for you to pull it down on your other devices.

00:03:05   So that nixes PhotoStream as any sort of solution to,

00:03:09   any sort of Everpix-like solution to hold all my photos

00:03:12   for me.

00:03:13   Doesn't matter what the limits are,

00:03:14   doesn't matter anything else, bottom line is

00:03:16   it's not gonna be there for more than 30 days,

00:03:18   it's just a holding area.

00:03:19   So I think that clarifies for me.

00:03:21   And it's nice to see that from Apple

00:03:23   because that was my impression of how it worked,

00:03:25   reading all the other things,

00:03:26   but seeing Apple explain,

00:03:28   that simple sentence explaining the motivation

00:03:30   of the service makes it clear

00:03:31   that this is just not an accidental implementation detail

00:03:34   and that soon it will hold all your photos or whatever.

00:03:36   The intention of this feature is just a holding bin

00:03:38   and Apple is saying it themselves.

00:03:39   So I feel a little bit,

00:03:41   I feel like I understand photo streaming

00:03:42   a little bit more now.

00:03:43   And now I know enough to not really pay attention to it

00:03:46   no matter what they do with the limits.

00:03:48   And speaking of photo streaming,

00:03:49   I threw another link in the show notes here

00:03:51   that have almost nothing to say about it except for here's another one of these things. It's

00:03:55   called SpaceMonkey.com, triple dub SpaceMonkey.com, and it looks like some kind of hardware device

00:04:00   combined with a software service, kind of like Everpix. The website is...

00:04:04   It actually looks just like Transporter, actually. Like, if you look at it, if you read into

00:04:09   it a little bit, it basically—and we should disclose Transporter as a frequent sponsor

00:04:13   of our show, so take this with a grain of salt, however—it basically looks like Transporter

00:04:17   but with worse pricing.

00:04:19   Well, but they have a whole software component too, where it's like, it's more like a media

00:04:24   manager.

00:04:25   It's not just like arbitrary file storage.

00:04:26   Transporter is sort of like application agnostic.

00:04:28   It is a place for data, and what data you put there is totally up to you.

00:04:32   And this looks like it's trying to be a hybrid of Transporter and Everpix.

00:04:36   But I looked at his website for a while, and it's totally like a Web 3.0-y kind of bootstrap-built

00:04:44   website with animated stuff.

00:04:45   I could not for life figure out any actual technical information about this thing.

00:04:50   It's pretty light on the information and pretty heavy on the marketing titles and graphics,

00:04:56   but actual information is hard to come by on this site.

00:04:59   It could be awesome, it could be terrible, I don't know, I just wanted to throw it out

00:05:01   there as yet another one of these things that is trying to solve the problem of where we

00:05:06   put all our junk.

00:05:08   And the final thing on this topic is we talked briefly about Box yesterday and how it was

00:05:11   kind of like an enterprise-focused version of Dropbox.

00:05:15   And I either said or strongly implied that Box could be self-hosted, and I got an email

00:05:20   from a Box employee saying that Box is not self-hosted.

00:05:23   Also it's not called Box.net anymore.

00:05:25   That was the old name that I said on the past show.

00:05:27   They dropped the .net.

00:05:28   Anyway, it's not self-hosted.

00:05:30   They host it for you, and the difference is between this and Dropbox, according to this

00:05:33   Box employee, are that they manage their own data centers.

00:05:36   They don't put stuff in S3, so there's a little bit more deterministic security about the

00:05:42   data.

00:05:43   It's not just putting in another bucket through another third party.

00:05:45   It's just one box stores the data.

00:05:47   They have admin tools and reporting and stuff that gives them more oversight on the data,

00:05:52   so if you need some sort of auditing and reporting, they can provide that to you instead of, again,

00:05:55   relying on Amazon to do that.

00:05:58   And they're compliant with a bunch of certifications and all the good stuff.

00:06:00   So thanks to the Box employee for the clarification.

00:06:04   And I think if you go to Box.net it redirects, but anyway, go to Box.com and you'll find

00:06:08   it.

00:06:09   It seems like Box is, I almost just said Box.net because that's always how I thought of it.

00:06:14   It's one of the services that has a billion users effectively and geeks in our circles

00:06:20   almost never even considered existing, almost never think about it.

00:06:23   Yeah, because it's the same to Pandapro.

00:06:25   Right, it's not used by Mac nerds with laptops.

00:06:28   It's used in the enterprise a lot and a lot of PC users use it.

00:06:32   And it's like StumbleUpon, when StumbleUpon first became big.

00:06:36   Or even more recently, when Pinterest started growing like crazy.

00:06:39   And the entire tech geek world was basically ignoring it because it was so popular among

00:06:47   women and the tech geek world is so dominated by men, at least the online press part of

00:06:52   it, that it was invisible to that world.

00:06:56   And all of a sudden we realized, "Oh my god, this is huge."

00:06:58   I think that's how Box is.

00:07:01   It's really massive, and tons of people use it, but we hardly ever see it.

00:07:05   Now that I'm using it every day now, it works similarly to Dropbox, but with an enterprise

00:07:10   event.

00:07:11   Could they have picked a different name, at least?

00:07:13   If they were going to go from box.net to something else, could they have not made this very similar

00:07:18   to Dropbox service named Box?

00:07:20   Yeah, well, maybe that's a strength in the enterprise.

00:07:24   You don't want to drop your software.

00:07:26   Use Box.

00:07:27   Wow.

00:07:28   I thought that Box predated Dropbox. That is completely not fact-checked, but I thought that was the case.

00:07:34   It's been around for a while anyway. It's not some new thing.

00:07:36   Wasn't there something called xDrive before BMW used it? Wasn't it like a

00:07:40   something kind of similar that would give you like an xDrive letter on your Windows PC?

00:07:44   In case you know about this, obviously John wouldn't. I actually don't know about this, but it sounds like something that a Windows

00:07:50   or something that would be for the Windows platform. Yeah.

00:07:54   Anyway.

00:07:57   The chat is saying that box.net because at the time it was called box.net is 2005 Dropbox 2008

00:08:03   All right, obviously that matters a lot now so

00:08:09   Let's move on to our first aid results Casey

00:08:13   How did you do running disk utility as John assigned us in the last episode? Right? So captain paranoid

00:08:19   explained to us that we should be running disk utility on an hourly basis and

00:08:24   Verifying everything under the Sun no no repair you got to repair verify why bother verifying you got a repair my apologies

00:08:31   You are correct sir to repair everything under the Sun and this is a real pain in the butt if you

00:08:36   Run on a laptop like I do because you got a reboot and see recovery mode blah blah blah well anyway

00:08:41   So I as I've mentioned numerous times. I have two 15 inch high-res anti glare MacBook Pros with optical drives. They're both day and night

00:08:50   Yeah, exactly.

00:08:51   That's-- well, actually, you could say that,

00:08:53   because one's work, one's not.

00:08:54   But anyway, the point is I tried it on both of them.

00:08:59   And one has an SSD, one does not.

00:09:02   And both of them had errors which were

00:09:05   able to be fixed by disk utility.

00:09:07   So as much as I begrudge Captain Paranoid for making

00:09:10   me worry about something that I didn't really

00:09:12   feel like worrying about, it ended up it was for the best.

00:09:14   So thank you, John.

00:09:15   And by the way, I do recommend running

00:09:16   verify on your boot drive.

00:09:17   Because then you don't have to reboot.

00:09:19   the common case like a like out everything is fine

00:09:22   you will be able to just run verify your boot is used on the walk away from

00:09:25   computer because it will totally make your computer unusable

00:09:28   uh... but just in a do it when you go on for lunch or something and most of the

00:09:31   time when you come back to say i'll verify checked and it's fine

00:09:34   i only recommend repair external because

00:09:36   if verify finds errors the very next thing you're going to do is repair and

00:09:39   it takes a similar amount of time to do both verify and repair

00:09:42   uh... so on your boot drive your only choice is verify so do that on external

00:09:45   drives you might as well just to repair because that's what that's what that

00:09:48   move is going to be anyway, if there are any errors. And if there's not any errors, they're

00:09:52   equivalent. Here's a question. Is there much of a reason, or even is it possible, to do this

00:09:56   on a network time machine? So like we have it with the Synology setup, where Synology is using,

00:10:03   you know, open source whatever component to host time machine shares, which I think are stored as

00:10:09   giant sparse images or something like that. Does any part of this apply to those? Yeah,

00:10:14   no, any volume you can mount, any HFS+ volume you can mount, you can do this to.

00:10:17   Are sparse images HFS+ internal? Yeah, underneath there is an HFS+ volume.

00:10:22   Okay. Like, that's what mounts when it does its thing.

00:10:25   Alright then. Yeah, but I didn't see it in disk utility. I don't believe.

00:10:29   Well, you have to make it mount. Like, Time Machine does this sneaky thing where it'll connect to this analogy and mount the volume.

00:10:34   If you look at your desktop, you can see it appear sometimes, but it's not, you know, it makes it all go away when the backup is done.

00:10:39   You know, sometimes you don't see it at all. And you can manually mount the share just like, you know, just in Finder.

00:10:44   just like, you know, just in finder.

00:10:45   Yeah, just double click the sparse bundle that's there.

00:10:47   Yeah, yeah, yeah.

00:10:48   Okay.

00:10:49   All right, moving right along.

00:10:52   Well, hold on, hold on.

00:10:53   What about you?

00:10:54   We've got way more to do.

00:10:55   Yeah, I might not have done my homework.

00:10:58   There's a surprise.

00:10:59   Well, John told me not to run it while you're using it, and so I've been using it.

00:11:03   Well, you could have run it on your external drives.

00:11:05   You don't have more than one drive, right?

00:11:07   All right, well, if you didn't do your homework, it's okay.

00:11:10   Lots of other people did who filled out the survey.

00:11:11   I should have mentioned that after the show, I should have thought of this during the show,

00:11:14   After the show last week, I said,

00:11:15   you know what, we should get some information on this.

00:11:18   I wonder how many people listened to the last episode

00:11:20   and decided I'm going to run Disk Utility on my disks,

00:11:23   just like they talked about on the show.

00:11:25   And I wanted to know how they did.

00:11:26   So I tweeted out a link that said,

00:11:27   hey, if you listened to the show last week

00:11:31   and decided to run Disk Utility, tell me how it turned out.

00:11:33   It's just a two-question survey.

00:11:35   And I tweeted it, I think I did it on app.net,

00:11:38   and Marco put it in the show notes,

00:11:40   but it wasn't mentioned on the show.

00:11:42   And we got a lot of people replying,

00:11:43   both before and after the survey were popping like, "Hey, I listened to your show and I did stuff."

00:11:47   And I put a couple of... I grabbed a couple of tweets here. One person said, this is from

00:11:51   D. Shep, "Ran disk utility last week and it reported errors. Rebooted and repair was not

00:11:55   possible. So it did verify it and it reported it was okay." Lots of things like where they'll

00:12:00   run it and it will say there's a problem, they'll try to repair it. It will say, "Sorry,

00:12:03   couldn't repair it," and then it's okay. Or there'll be errors and there won't be errors.

00:12:06   There'll be errors and there won't be... And that's not reassuring to anybody involved.

00:12:09   "Oh, no, it said there was errors, but now there's not. I guess everything's fine." But

00:12:13   but instead you get this feeling of unease about,

00:12:15   hmm, I don't know about that.

00:12:17   Here's another one.

00:12:18   Ran Disk Utilium on my startup disk, this is by RYB.

00:12:21   On my MacBook Air for the first time in over a year,

00:12:23   it fixed a free block count error

00:12:25   which freed up 70 gigabytes, crazy.

00:12:28   So that person got 70 gigabytes of disk space back

00:12:30   because apparently HFS+ had lost track

00:12:33   of the free block count.

00:12:34   - Wow.

00:12:35   - And it's like, they're trees, right?

00:12:38   So if you have a missing,

00:12:39   if the whole sub-tree goes missing in the metadata,

00:12:42   it could potentially be pointing to lots of information.

00:12:44   So he got 70 gigs back.

00:12:46   This is from EVQ, ran disk utility, got an error,

00:12:51   followed the instructions,

00:12:52   then disk utility recovery found no errors.

00:12:54   Again, spooky.

00:12:55   And lots of reports of what happened to me

00:13:00   with my time machine volume,

00:13:00   which is it had errors that I went to repair

00:13:03   and it said, sorry, can't repair.

00:13:04   And then after that, the disk was unmountable.

00:13:06   And that leads to something else

00:13:08   I should have talked about last week.

00:13:10   Verified disk is in theory,

00:13:11   read-only operation. repair disk is going to make changes to your disk. those

00:13:15   changes may be harmful to your disk but if it's got errors anyway you say well

00:13:19   it had errors but it seemed to be working fine. you can take that into

00:13:23   account and say look this thing has errors but before I even try to repair

00:13:26   let me make sure that I have like this gets back to the multiple backups thing

00:13:29   you know be aware that attempting to repair an error as I described in last

00:13:34   week's show could make the disk even worse off than it was. it doesn't mean

00:13:38   that you should have really used that backup before, but it could make things worse.

00:13:42   So always have multiple backups.

00:13:43   Before you start messing with anything, before you start writing data to any disk, make sure

00:13:47   that is not your only backup.

00:13:50   And I don't know what else to do.

00:13:51   People like, "If I found errors, what should I do?"

00:13:52   If that's your only backup and it has errors, it's like, "Well, is your source disk okay?"

00:13:57   Because if your source disk is okay, make a second backup from it now before you start

00:14:00   screwing with the other one.

00:14:01   Don't just rush into it.

00:14:02   More than one backup good.

00:14:04   Anyway.

00:14:05   I would say that your story last week about how both your primary volume and your time

00:14:10   machine backup were both corrupted, that is as big an ad as any for super-duper clones

00:14:18   and cloud backup services.

00:14:22   That just shows you right there, just one volume and its time machine backup are not

00:14:25   really enough.

00:14:26   Yeah.

00:14:27   I mean, and the thing is, maybe if I checked more frequently, one of them went bad first,

00:14:32   then I would have been able to fix it from one to the other.

00:14:35   But maybe I waited too long, didn't feel paranoid soon enough, and hadn't checked

00:14:39   it.

00:14:40   I was going to say, we saw a really good tweet from Grady Nealey who said, "In the Army,

00:14:46   we had a saying pertaining to critical equipment, 'Two is one, one is none, so it goes for backups.'"

00:14:53   And I think that's absolutely true.

00:14:54   If you only have one backup, that's effectively not really having a backup at all, especially

00:14:58   if it's co-located with wherever your computer lives most of the time.

00:15:02   Which is why the three of us are so excited for Crash Plan or Backblaze or whatever your

00:15:07   online cloud backup system of choice is.

00:15:10   It's really nice to have that as well as something local.

00:15:13   Or many things local.

00:15:14   Although I dread ever having to restore from, that really is like my last, last, last resort.

00:15:19   That's why I like to have multiple local backups.

00:15:21   And I really want to have the cloud backup in case the house burns down, but if it doesn't

00:15:25   burn down, I don't want to have to go to that.

00:15:27   Or unless I'm like away from my computer and I want to grab a file from a backup, then

00:15:31   it's kind of handy to use whatever the iOS app is for your thing and grab stuff.

00:15:35   Yeah, Cloud Backup is like, you can't really test it without just trying to pull a file

00:15:39   off of it. You can't really, you don't have that same kind of reassurance that you

00:15:44   do with a super duper clone. You can just boot from it and just see if everything's

00:15:49   okay. Boot from it once a month or something and just test it. You can't really do that

00:15:53   with Cloud Backup. You can try to pull a file off of it, but it's kind of a process. And

00:15:57   If you ever do have to restore, do a full restore for one, you might be downloading

00:16:02   a terabyte of data off the internet, which might take a while.

00:16:05   So it is always good to, you know, if the cloud backup really is your last resort.

00:16:10   That said, though, I think regular volume plus time machine plus backblaze, I think

00:16:15   that's a very good setup for most people.

00:16:17   Geeks like us, you know, if you have extra hard drives lying around, yeah, make a super

00:16:20   duper clone also.

00:16:22   But regular plus time machine plus backblaze I think is fine.

00:16:25   Yeah, or the other alternative is, like I said,

00:16:28   run disk utility more often

00:16:30   so that you don't end up in a situation,

00:16:32   because they probably don't both go bad

00:16:33   at exactly the same time, right?

00:16:35   One of them goes first,

00:16:36   and if you're running it off enough,

00:16:37   you'll get in a situation where one went bad

00:16:39   but one is good, and you can quickly,

00:16:41   you know, dupe out a second backup.

00:16:43   And don't, by the way, if you only have two things,

00:16:46   your computer and a time machine disk,

00:16:48   and the time machine disk goes bad,

00:16:51   don't erase the time machine disk

00:16:53   and then try to copy the backup,

00:16:54   Because as soon as you erase a time machine disk,

00:16:56   now your data is in one place,

00:16:57   and that is somewhere you never ever ever wanna be.

00:16:59   Like it's, you just don't ever be in that situation.

00:17:02   Two places is bad enough.

00:17:04   If you have two places and one is bad,

00:17:06   a bad backup is better than no backup.

00:17:08   Do not erase that disk, just don't touch it,

00:17:10   put it aside, get a new disk, backup to that, yeah.

00:17:14   This is why we want companies to take care

00:17:15   of this stuff for us, 'cause this is way too much

00:17:17   for a regular person to handle.

00:17:18   Anyone listening to this is like,

00:17:19   I don't even wanna think about backups.

00:17:20   I agree, I don't wanna think about it either.

00:17:22   And I also don't want to think about bitrod and the fact

00:17:25   that none of these things-- all these HFS plus checks

00:17:28   are just checking the metadata.

00:17:30   They're not checking the data.

00:17:31   The data could be totally hosed.

00:17:32   We have no idea what state the data is in.

00:17:35   I don't want to think about it.

00:17:37   So the survey that I sent out there,

00:17:42   I think maybe the sample group may be slightly biased

00:17:45   because it's people who listen to a nerdy podcast

00:17:48   or who follow a nerdy person on Twitter.

00:17:50   And maybe those people are more likely to do

00:17:52   complicated things with their disks that in turn could cause more errors or something.

00:17:56   The one thing the survey has going for it is

00:17:58   people didn't know whether they were going to find errors or not before they ran Disk Utility, right?

00:18:06   So it's not like only the people who found errors filled this out. The survey was if you listen to the episode and ran Disk Utility

00:18:12   what did you find? And none of those people I would imagine knew beforehand what they were going to find.

00:18:16   So despite the sampling,

00:18:19   the self-selection of the people who take the survey.

00:18:22   I'm hoping it's not like only the people who found errors filled out the survey and the people who didn't find errors

00:18:28   didn't bother to fill out the survey because I guess, I don't know, I mean,

00:18:31   I don't know how statistically valid this is, let's just say. But anyway, you guys want to guess at the results?

00:18:37   I'll tell you that at the time I pulled this data from it, 758 people had responded to the survey.

00:18:43   Wow, the first the first question was this was how it's word if you listen to episode 40 of accidental tech podcast

00:18:49   Subsequently ran disc utilities first aid function on one or more of your hfs plus volume. So this encompasses all their discs

00:18:54   I didn't want to ask them individually or whatever. Did it find any errors?

00:18:57   So if you have five discs and you find errors on one of them

00:18:59   You would say yes to this is just basically saying you ran disc utility on all your stuff

00:19:03   Did your stuff have any errors?

00:19:05   And I didn't ask them how many discs you have around any volumes ago because I didn't want this to be too complicated

00:19:09   You want to do a sponsor read to build suspense in the middle of this?

00:19:12   Oh, and then the second question was, if you found errors, was the repair function able

00:19:17   to repair?

00:19:18   So I want you two to guess what you think, you know, did you find errors percentage wise,

00:19:23   not numbers wise.

00:19:24   You guys to guess, and then after the sponsor break, I'll tell you the answer.

00:19:27   But first, you should guess.

00:19:28   All right.

00:19:29   My guess is the percentage of respondents who had errors found was 30%.

00:19:36   I will guess 70%, which is aggressive.

00:19:43   But I'm hoping that you're right, Marco, because then maybe John will stop whining about HFS+.

00:19:48   Never.

00:19:49   It's like the price is right.

00:19:50   One dollar, one dollar.

00:19:53   Are we doing price is right rules or closest wins?

00:19:57   This is important.

00:19:58   We're going to do closest wins.

00:20:00   This episode is brought to you in part by our friends at Warby Parker.

00:20:05   They sponsored us a couple months ago.

00:20:06   They're awesome.

00:20:07   So Warby Parker believes that prescription glasses

00:20:10   simply should not cost $300 or more.

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00:20:40   And every pair comes with a hard case and cleaning cloth,

00:20:42   so you don't need to buy any overpriced accessories

00:20:44   with them.

00:20:45   Buying glasses online sounds like it would be risky.

00:20:48   How would you know whether they would fit

00:20:49   or whether they'll look good on you?

00:20:51   Well, Warby had you covered, and actually quite impressively,

00:20:53   if I may say so.

00:20:54   So first, the website has a really helpful tool

00:20:57   that uses your computer's webcam to give you

00:21:00   a preview of how the glasses will look on your face.

00:21:02   and they can even help you measure your eyes and your face in this little tool

00:21:06   to get your fit exactly right when you order.

00:21:09   But the best part of this is their home try-on program.

00:21:12   You can borrow up to five pairs of glasses risk-free,

00:21:15   they will ship them to you for free,

00:21:17   you can try them on in the comfort of your own home for five days,

00:21:20   then you can send them back with a prepaid free return label,

00:21:23   you don't pay anything this whole process,

00:21:25   and there's no obligation to buy.

00:21:28   They also offer prescription and non-prescription polarized sunglasses.

00:21:31   I love polarized sunglasses personally.

00:21:34   If you ever had non-polarized, you really

00:21:36   don't know what you're missing.

00:21:38   And this really, $95 as the base cost,

00:21:40   is really a great price even for non-prescription sunglasses.

00:21:43   That's really good for polarized sunglasses.

00:21:45   So we did the spot a few months ago,

00:21:47   and I had my wife, Tiff, come in,

00:21:49   because she had ordered two pairs from them

00:21:51   to talk about it on the ad.

00:21:53   And I asked her for an update tonight,

00:21:54   see how she's liking them.

00:21:56   And she still uses them almost every day,

00:21:59   and she still really likes them.

00:22:00   She has one pair of sunglasses, one pair of prescription.

00:22:03   And she loves-- she said the hard case

00:22:05   that they come with is really nice and high quality,

00:22:07   so she loves that too.

00:22:08   And so yeah, so I went back and looked at them tonight.

00:22:10   I could actually use some sunglasses myself for driving,

00:22:13   because my current pair is kind of falling apart,

00:22:15   because I bought it from some shady shop in New Zealand

00:22:17   for no money.

00:22:19   And I don't-- it has a no-brand name.

00:22:21   God knows what it is.

00:22:23   But yeah, so I'm looking forward to these myself,

00:22:25   because they're really good.

00:22:28   So, what's also great about Warby Parker is that they believe in giving back to the world.

00:22:33   Almost a billion people worldwide lack access to glasses, and they can't effectively learn

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00:22:43   need through nonprofits such as VisionSpring.

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00:22:51   That's W-A-R-B-Y parker.com, and check out their great selection of premium quality affordable

00:22:57   eyewear. Browse around, get yourself a home try-on kit risk-free. And if you decide to

00:23:02   order your own pair, use coupon code ATP for free three-day shipping. So thanks a lot to

00:23:07   Warby Parker for sponsoring the show.

00:23:09   Yeah, you know, I told this story when they sponsored in episode 26. And when I did the

00:23:16   free try-on thing, I ordered like two or three pairs that I was pretty confident were my

00:23:20   style and then two pairs that I didn't think were me at all. And it ended up that because

00:23:26   Because I was able to try those, I actually ended up going with one of the pairs of sunglasses

00:23:31   that I didn't expect to like at all, and I just thought, "Eh, let me see what happens."

00:23:35   And I love those sunglasses.

00:23:37   And inevitably I will break them because I'm a klutz and I always destroy my sunglasses,

00:23:42   but I will be devastated when I do because I really, really do like them.

00:23:46   You mentioned the case that they come in.

00:23:48   That's the—I've been wearing glasses, you know, since I was in like third grade or whatever.

00:23:53   This is the most impressive glasses case, the one that came with my prescription sunglasses

00:23:56   that I've ever seen in my life.

00:23:57   It is gigantic and like, it looks like you could run it over with a car and your glasses

00:24:02   would be fine.

00:24:04   The little box that they ship you with the glasses in it was impressive, but the case

00:24:07   was, I was also impressed by that.

00:24:09   And it's nice having prescription sunglasses for the first time.

00:24:12   I feel all fancy.

00:24:14   All right, so.

00:24:17   So what were the results of your survey, Jon?

00:24:19   So Marco, you said 30%?

00:24:21   I said 30%, and you said 70%.

00:24:23   Now, what do you think is reasonable for--

00:24:26   the job of the file system is basically

00:24:28   to keep track of where your crap is.

00:24:29   And Marco's number at 30% is that you're saying,

00:24:33   it's OK that on 30% of the Macs out there,

00:24:36   assuming our sampling is significant,

00:24:39   is representative of the mass of Mac users.

00:24:42   It's OK for about 30% of the time for HFS+ to screw up

00:24:46   and for there to be potentially data destroying errors.

00:24:48   And Casey's saying 70% to try to be dramatic,

00:24:51   But like that, I mean, can we all agree that 70 would be unreasonable?

00:24:56   That if 70% of the Macs out there had errors on their, you know, the HFS+ errors on the

00:25:01   disks?

00:25:02   Yeah, not hardware problems, but just software problems, like not keeping track.

00:25:04   So that would be unreasonable, I think.

00:25:05   Well, sure, anything more than zero in theory is unreasonable.

00:25:08   Well, no, because like you have to expect that one or 2% are going to have problems.

00:25:11   Some person kicked the plug out or there was some crazy, like there's always going to be

00:25:14   a little bit of bugs or whatever.

00:25:15   But I think once you start to get into double digit percentages, that's not like an aberration,

00:25:20   there was a power outage in the middle of the thing that I didn't notice and it just

00:25:24   built up, or cosmic rays or whatever.

00:25:28   Yeah, I would say 10% should be cause for concern.

00:25:30   Yeah, because then that's, I would say anything over double digit percent is like, that's

00:25:36   some kind of systemic issue, like bugs in the software that are not just cosmic rays

00:25:42   or one-off occurrences or hardware related, or maybe they could be hardware related, but

00:25:47   it seems like a lot.

00:25:49   So I don't know what I expected these numbers to be, but I kind of felt like they were going

00:25:53   to be like, my guess would have been like 15, 18 percent.

00:25:57   That would have been my guess for, because like 10 percent seemed low to me.

00:26:02   But surely it's not on like more than maybe 20 percent because I know I find the errors

00:26:06   and I know if I go up to someone's computer and they've never run disc utility, they find

00:26:09   errors.

00:26:10   But I figure again, people who listen to this podcast are probably nerds and they know about

00:26:13   disc utility.

00:26:14   I didn't have to explain to anybody where it was.

00:26:16   Like all these people found it themselves and ran it and did all this stuff themselves.

00:26:19   So maybe they'd run it before or whatever.

00:26:22   But here are the results.

00:26:23   The results were, you know, did you find any errors?

00:26:26   Again, this is across all the disks that you tried, and I didn't ask them how many.

00:26:29   Forty-four point three percent found errors on their disks.

00:26:32   Oh, nicely done, Marco.

00:26:33   Marco is closer, but that is shockingly close to half.

00:26:36   That's really bad.

00:26:37   Yeah, and that is much higher than I thought it would be.

00:26:40   I was thinking 18, 20 percent.

00:26:42   Maybe 25, but 44, that's grim, I think.

00:26:46   question was, if the errors were found, and was the repair function able to repair the

00:26:51   errors? So of the people who found errors, eight people didn't attempt to repair or didn't

00:26:57   answer that question, right? So I'm giving you percentages of, like, out of all the people

00:27:01   who attempted to fix the error, what percentage of those people, with disk utility, not with

00:27:06   a third-party tool, not with anything else, how successful was disk utility repairing

00:27:10   the errors? Care to guess what the percentage is there?

00:27:12   Hmm, I would say probably 75%.

00:27:16   Oh, see, I think it would be more than that.

00:27:19   I would think it would be closer to 90.

00:27:21   Marco gets it again.

00:27:23   73.17%.

00:27:24   So, you basically have a one in four shot, a little bit worse than a one in four shot

00:27:30   of Disk Utility being able to fix your errors.

00:27:33   Again, I don't know how representative these results are, but they are worse than I expected,

00:27:37   because I would have expected errors to be on far fewer than 44%.

00:27:41   And I would have expected Disk Utility's fix rate to be like,

00:27:44   it seems like to me, I just expected that we'd fix it.

00:27:47   I would say, oh, 95%, something like that.

00:27:49   73% is not good.

00:27:51   So that shows those errors weren't just one tiny little error

00:27:54   that's easy to fix, but they were the type of errors

00:27:55   Disk Utility couldn't fix.

00:27:56   Now, some people reported to me that if you boot

00:27:58   into single user mode and you do FSCK manually,

00:28:01   which is more or less the same thing

00:28:02   as Disk Utility does under the covers,

00:28:04   but in single user mode, you don't have any contention

00:28:06   for the catalog file, you're the only process running

00:28:08   and stuff, and some people were saying

00:28:10   actually does repairs, the Disk Utility can't do. I'm not sure how much truth there is to that, but

00:28:13   that is one more tool in your toolkit. If you get a Disk Utility that says it can't repair,

00:28:18   you can reboot into single user mode if you're comfortable with that. And I feel like I shouldn't

00:28:23   explain it, because if you don't know what it is, then you're not comfortable with it. And run

00:28:27   FSCK with a couple of options and have it attempt to repair your volume. Again, if you're not

00:28:32   comfortable with this, don't try to do it. It's very easy to do the wrong thing from the command

00:28:36   in single user mode.

00:28:38   But if you are comfortable with it, it's worth a try.

00:28:40   That's pretty bad.

00:28:42   And I don't want to encourage you to go on another file system rant.

00:28:46   Why not?

00:28:48   Well, we haven't beaten this horse. John has beaten this horse.

00:28:52   But anyway, the file system is one job, which is not to screw up your data.

00:28:58   And HFS+ is just not cutting the mustard, apparently.

00:29:00   And that's not even your data. Forget it. Who knows what state your data is?

00:29:04   This is just keeping track of where stuff is.

00:29:07   Is that stuff the same as your data?

00:29:09   Is it the same as when you wrote it?

00:29:10   Who the hell knows?

00:29:11   HFS+ doesn't know, it doesn't care.

00:29:13   All it's saying is, "I put something on disk, and I'm supposed to keep track of where it

00:29:17   is, and this file name has this data associated with it.

00:29:20   I don't know what that data is.

00:29:21   It could all be zeros.

00:29:22   It could be just random garbage by now, but I just want to keep track of that bucket of

00:29:24   random garbage that's a certain length."

00:29:27   And that's the job of the file system.

00:29:29   Keep track of the information about where the files are.

00:29:32   wish that it would also say, "Oh, and by the way, that data is the same as when you wrote

00:29:35   it," but HFS+ says nothing, totally silent. Just trusts the hardware and says, "Yeah,

00:29:40   it's probably what you wrote. If it isn't, there's nothing we can do about it now, and

00:29:45   you have no way of knowing." A lot of people have talked about the... what is it called?

00:29:49   There's some tool that I can never remember the name of that I've actually... I think

00:29:53   I bought it way back in the day. I think I tried it once. They will crawl your disk and

00:29:58   put little checksums, like in each directory,

00:30:01   checksums of all the files.

00:30:02   And so in theory down the road,

00:30:04   you can then rechecksum them and compare it

00:30:07   against the contents of the file.

00:30:08   And at least then you'll know if, okay, well,

00:30:10   at one point I made checksums with all the files

00:30:12   in these directories and it said X,

00:30:14   and now I'm running checksums and it says Y,

00:30:16   so something must have changed.

00:30:17   I can't tell you what it was and I can't fix it.

00:30:20   And I can't even tell you if the state of your disk

00:30:23   when I ran the checksums was in a known good state.

00:30:25   It was just merely the state it was

00:30:26   when I ran the original checksums.

00:30:27   But at least it's something.

00:30:28   But it does have to crawl your whole disk.

00:30:30   It does have to read every single byte of data

00:30:32   off your disk to make the checksums the first time anyway.

00:30:35   And the second time, it probably trusts file dates

00:30:37   or something like that to be more efficient about it.

00:30:39   But I don't really recommend this tool

00:30:42   because it really beats up on your disks

00:30:44   the first time you run it.

00:30:45   And it's really not the correct solution.

00:30:47   The correct solution is a file system

00:30:48   that does this when the data is on its way in and out.

00:30:51   And we don't have that yet.

00:30:52   So we just cross our fingers and pray.

00:30:56   Wow.

00:30:56   So what you're recommending is FAT32 for Mac OS?

00:31:01   No, I'm recommending just--

00:31:03   I can recommend the episode of the debug podcast

00:31:07   I was on recently where me and several other people

00:31:10   talked about file systems and Mavericks, among other things.

00:31:13   And part one of two was posted because we talked for like 3

00:31:15   and 1/2 hours.

00:31:16   So--

00:31:17   Yeah, it was really good.

00:31:17   I'll link to that in the show notes.

00:31:18   That was definitely worth listening to.

00:31:20   My favorite thing about it was that two of the people there

00:31:23   are ex-Apple employees.

00:31:24   And it's a lot better than just people

00:31:25   you know have seen apple from afar talking about stuff

00:31:28   and on that show the rest of us could

00:31:31   offer opinions of what we think apple might or might not be like inside or

00:31:34   might or might not be doing and have

00:31:36   actual ex-apple people

00:31:38   you know give thumbs up or thumbs down on whether that sounds reasonable and

00:31:42   that was that was exciting the two apple people were

00:31:44   who was it Ryan Nielsen and Daniel Jowkut

00:31:47   uh... I think I got the names right if I didn't Marco will fix it in post

00:31:52   and then Guy English was on it too, Rene Ritchie, you know, those guys

00:31:55   Well, it was only one guy.

00:31:56   [LAUGHS]

00:31:57   Wow.

00:31:58   [LAUGHS]

00:31:59   Moving on.

00:32:00   [LAUGHS]

00:32:01   All right, so do we want to talk about Xbox One?

00:32:04   Yeah, I think we should.

00:32:05   I think it's important, Jon.

00:32:07   [LAUGHS]

00:32:08   Yeah, Xbox One launched very close to the PlayStation 4.

00:32:12   PlayStation 4 was making a big deal because they sold a million units in North America

00:32:15   in 24 hours.

00:32:16   Xbox One launched and had its own little press release.

00:32:18   They said it sold more than one million consoles worldwide in less than 24 hours.

00:32:23   It's not an apples-to-apples comparison, but the bottom line is I think both are more or less supply constrained on launch

00:32:28   I think this is I talked about it last week that just because the early adopters are

00:32:34   Rabid for a new console as I imagine they would be doesn't necessarily mean that this console generation is going to do as well as

00:32:40   The previous or the one before that but it it definitely means that they're not

00:32:44   It's not you know if they had both tanked on launch. It would be a very very bad sign

00:32:48   So they're not both tanking on launch so far so good for the new console generation

00:32:53   they're selling out. And this is a little bit more impressive than the Xbox One because

00:32:57   it's $100 more than the PlayStation 3 and people did not appear to be price sensitive

00:33:02   or the supply was not enough to reveal the price sensitivity of consumers because everyone

00:33:06   who wanted a PS4 on lunch day, you know, bought them all and same thing with the Xbox One.

00:33:12   So we'll revisit this in a couple months to see how the consoles are doing but so far

00:33:16   so good.

00:33:17   I do wonder how many of the buyers were scalpers.

00:33:21   Because with any new electronics launch that's high-profile, which is pretty much

00:33:25   every new game console and every new iPhone and most new

00:33:29   tablets and stuff, there's always a pretty large contingent of scalpers

00:33:33   who are just buying it to put it on eBay or to bring it to countries where it isn't available yet to charge a premium.

00:33:37   So opening day numbers

00:33:41   or opening weekend numbers, you should always go into it with some skepticism because

00:33:45   some of it is going to be that. And for different products, it's a different portion of it,

00:33:49   but it's certainly always substantial. So I think it would be more interesting to see

00:33:55   what happens in two months, five months, just over the next year we'll see. And I also

00:34:01   still want to see what happens when any of these consoles gets a really good hit game

00:34:06   that's exclusive to that console. Because that's really what makes the console market

00:34:10   is, you know, must have killer games. And so far there's none on the new systems, on

00:34:16   any of three of them.

00:34:17   I'm not sure the Xbox One, when I've been thinking about it more, I'm not sure the Xbox

00:34:21   One needs a killer app beyond Xbox Live. Because if it just gets good versions of all the multi-format,

00:34:27   multi-platform games, its killer app is sort of, that's where your friends list is, you

00:34:32   are on Xbox Live, you've been on Xbox Live with 360, you'll be on Xbox Live with this.

00:34:37   If a multiplatform title comes out and you are not a PC gamer, you have a choice of should

00:34:42   you get the PS4 version, the Xbox One version.

00:34:44   And in the past generation, a lot of people got the 360 version just because that's where

00:34:48   their friends were on Xbox Live.

00:34:50   And sometimes it looked a little better than the PS4 version.

00:34:52   In this generation, Xbox One version may look slightly worse than the PS4 version in ways

00:34:58   that only gaming forum nerds care about most likely.

00:35:03   But people may still opt to buy the Xbox One version because that's where their friends

00:35:07   are.

00:35:08   So the online social networking kind of network effect, social lock-in thing may be more of

00:35:13   a factor than any killer game.

00:35:14   Because it's really hard for any platform to get a killer game that's exclusive to it

00:35:18   these days because the big titles are so big that Microsoft or Sony would have to pay.

00:35:24   Can you imagine Microsoft or Sony ever paying enough money to Rockstar to make the next

00:35:27   GTA exclusively on their console?

00:35:29   I don't think they have enough money to do that.

00:35:32   because they make so much more money by putting it out everywhere that Rockstar says, "Well,

00:35:36   if we're going to forego PC and PS4 or Microsoft, you're going to have to pay us so much money. Are

00:35:41   you ready for that?" And the answer is no, they're not. So I don't know. It's kind of like big movie

00:35:46   studios making a movie with $200 million and then only showing in a certain brand of movie theaters.

00:35:51   No chain of movie theaters can afford to do that. It's not quite the same, but I would love to see

00:35:56   that. And of course, there's first-party games like Halo and stuff like that, but

00:35:59   historically it has been difficult for those games to match up with the cumulative massive

00:36:05   sales machine that is the popular franchises that are multi-platform like Call of Duty and

00:36:10   what do you call it? Destiny is coming out soon and NTF Auto and all those things.

00:36:16   Sports?

00:36:18   Yeah, all the EA games. Yeah, the Madden franchise, stuff like that.

00:36:23   You know, so I'm not a gamer anymore. I

00:36:25   Excuse me. I rarely play games on my iPhone

00:36:29   I have a Wii or Aaron and I have a Wii that hasn't been plugged in for months now and

00:36:35   I was at my fur we were at my friend Phil's house over the weekend and he has an Xbox one and I

00:36:42   Didn't play any games. Although I saw him play need for speed which looked extraordinarily boring, but it was pretty

00:36:50   But we did use it because he has his TV going through it, and I forget the technical term for that,

00:36:55   but basically the Xbox is eating the TV signal and

00:36:58   IR blasting to his direct TV receiver in order to change channels and so on and so forth.

00:37:03   I believe it's called Web TV.

00:37:05   For a second there, I thought you're serious.

00:37:07   Anyway, so the point being that the audio controls, you know, Xbox, Play or turn to, Tune to Comedy Central or whatever it is,

00:37:16   I'm probably getting that wrong. That was just like Siri in that when it worked it was the work of magic

00:37:22   But when it didn't work, which was I would say two-thirds of the time it was infuriating

00:37:28   But I can see where the Xbox one is a very nifty and different take on

00:37:33   What the next iteration of television might be in that it's all voice controlled. I never saw anything gesture-based

00:37:41   I don't even know if there's a gesture based system, but

00:37:44   It's all voice controlled. You can put the TV on one side of the screen and put something else on the other side of

00:37:49   the screen like a video game or whatever. It was very very cool.

00:37:51   Nothing about it made me want to get one, but I could see why it would be appealing and I can see if a

00:37:58   person who liked to play games wanted something more than just a game console, I could absolutely see how this would be very very appealing.

00:38:05   I wonder how much of it is, you know, Microsoft is really making a very clear bet here.

00:38:11   here, they're betting on convergence. And of course, historically in our industry we've

00:38:15   had things like Web TV and various attempts at convergence around the TV set and trying

00:38:20   to mush two distinct devices that connect the TVs together into one. And usually those

00:38:26   have failed, or at least been mediocre at best. Microsoft's bet here is they think

00:38:33   that having your TV controlled through your game console is a really big deal, and that

00:38:37   The game console is more than just a gaming console.

00:38:39   It's like a home media TV activity console.

00:38:43   Whereas Sony's gone for more the pure gaming,

00:38:46   so is Nintendo, the pure gaming system

00:38:48   that's separate and dedicated, as Jon has discussed a lot.

00:38:52   The question is, I think, whether Microsoft is right.

00:38:55   How many people want to merge those two experiences?

00:38:59   I would actually guess it's a low number.

00:39:02   Relative to everyone who buys Xboxes,

00:39:03   I would say the portion of them that want to also

00:39:06   control their TV through it and have those experiences be very merged together.

00:39:10   I wouldn't guess it's very high, but I could be very wrong about that.

00:39:14   I think there's a little bit of a potential Wii effect here in that one of the reasons

00:39:19   when we look at those graphs of console sales that the Wii's line shot up like a rocket

00:39:23   with such an incredible slope is because Wii had a, I don't want to call it a novelty factor,

00:39:29   but it's more or less what it is, in that people were curious, what would it be like

00:39:34   to play games while waggling a little remote around.

00:39:36   Because it was an experience that people hadn't done.

00:39:38   And people bought it just because, like, they didn't necessarily even think it was going

00:39:42   to be good, but they just said, "Well, this is a new thing, and I know some people have

00:39:46   tried it, and I'm not one of those people.

00:39:48   I need to get one of those so I can try to see what this is like, good or bad."

00:39:53   And the Xbox One, like, 360 had Kinect, right?

00:39:55   But it was an add-on, and add-ons have notoriously bad sell-through rates for consoles.

00:39:59   Like, of all the Xbox 360s sold, what percentage of those people bought Kinect?

00:40:03   very low. All of the Xbox Ones come with the Kinect 2, and Microsoft was adamant about

00:40:08   that and it's one of the many reasons that their console is $100 more than Sony's, and

00:40:12   they're taking the hit. They said, "Look, we're going to make them all come with that."

00:40:15   That means every single Xbox One has the sort of Wii effect of people wondering, "I wonder

00:40:20   what it would be like to talk to my TV or to wave my hands around like a maniac and

00:40:24   try to make menus go." Maybe those same people think it's going to be stupid and bad, or

00:40:28   maybe they tried their friends' Kinect 1 and didn't like it, but they're like, "But this

00:40:31   one is better and like there's just that curiosity about it and so that that

00:40:37   factor alone no matter how it ends up being even if it ends up being a total

00:40:40   disaster no one ever uses it anymore they just use it to play games like they

00:40:43   did with a 360 just the fact that it gets people in the door or curious about

00:40:47   it I think is a really big strength for Microsoft in this generation because

00:40:51   they all come with Kinect and as for actually using it I've heard mostly

00:40:56   reports that trying to use the Xbox one to watch television like to control your

00:40:59   television is not a good experience for the same reason that the television market is

00:41:04   littered with the bodies of companies that have tried to put a box in front of your TV

00:41:08   and let you control your TV with it.

00:41:09   It is just really hard and complicated because of our terrible – at least in the U.S. – our

00:41:14   terrible cable television system.

00:41:15   It's non-standardized and all this other stuff.

00:41:17   People were saying, "It's better to use my cable boxes guide than to use the Xbox

00:41:21   guide."

00:41:22   That's pretty damning when you have a $500 box that you attach to your TV, and it's

00:41:26   better to just use your cable box.

00:41:27   Also, everyone hates their cable box guide because they're all terrible.

00:41:30   Right, and they're saying the Xbox One was worse.

00:41:33   But I think even if the Xbox One, if it gets people to buy it for the novelty factor and

00:41:37   then they just use it like a 360, that's still a win for Microsoft.

00:41:41   Because using it like a 360 means using Xbox Live.

00:41:44   When you're watching TV, you're able to quickly switch over to a game and play it, or switch

00:41:47   back to TV when people are in the lobby and stuff like that.

00:41:50   Even that functionality, which is not that big a deal, that's something that Sony can't

00:41:54   match because they don't have HDMI in.

00:41:56   So I don't think the Xbox One has to fulfill all the magical minority report voice recognition

00:42:02   Siri AI dreams.

00:42:03   It just has to do one or two things that the PS4 can't and basically be an updated 360

00:42:10   with Kinect built in.

00:42:11   And maybe there will still not be any decent games that any gamer really cares about that

00:42:15   use Kinect, but we'll see.

00:42:17   This episode is also brought to you by our friends at Ting.

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00:44:55   There's an item lower down in the notes here that we might want to hoist up.

00:44:59   Your car complaints?

00:45:01   No.

00:45:02   Apple buys PrimeSense.

00:45:05   Did you read that story?

00:45:06   I didn't.

00:45:07   What's this about?

00:45:08   TimeSense is the company that originally made these sensors for the original Kinect.

00:45:13   Oh, that's interesting.

00:45:14   So, click through to the link.

00:45:16   I might have gotten that slightly wrong.

00:45:17   But basically...

00:45:18   It looks like the Kinect.

00:45:19   Yeah, well, you know, there's a reason for it.

00:45:22   This is what this company does.

00:45:23   Makes Kinect-like sensors, and I think they were involved in the development of the original

00:45:27   Kinect, if not the Kinect 2.

00:45:29   And that is interesting, because Apple tends not to buy companies frivolously, unless they're

00:45:35   color.

00:45:36   That was a great domain name.

00:45:39   Oh, geez.

00:45:41   They buy color, but they don't buy Everpix.

00:45:44   You would imagine, though, like it's like when they bought PA Semi, that they bought

00:45:49   this company because they have an interest in some kind of sensor stuff.

00:45:52   And I think everyone was thinking, "Okay, well, Microsoft's doing the Xbox One and this

00:45:55   TV integration, and Apple still has yet to make whatever we think their crazy move is

00:45:58   going to be in the TV world other than their little black puck, because Steve Jobs said

00:46:02   and has booked that, oh, we've cracked the problem.

00:46:04   We haven't seen anything that seems to match up with that.

00:46:07   So we're still waiting for the other shoe to drop on TV.

00:46:09   And then they buy the sensor maker.

00:46:11   And on the one hand, it's like way too late

00:46:13   for them to be buying the sensor maker

00:46:14   if we're expecting them to have a product next year

00:46:16   that involves the sensor at all,

00:46:17   if you think of how long it took for us to see clear fruits

00:46:19   of the PSME acquisition.

00:46:22   But on the other hand, it also implies that they think

00:46:25   that sensor-related things are important enough

00:46:28   for them to buy a company that probably has patents,

00:46:31   but also expertise in that technology.

00:46:32   So it's beyond the phase where they're like,

00:46:34   let's just get a Kinect and hook it up to some,

00:46:36   you know, big box of wires

00:46:38   and see if it's a useful thing to have.

00:46:40   It seems like they're into the phase

00:46:41   where they're getting serious about this.

00:46:42   And the question is,

00:46:44   what do they do with this technology?

00:46:45   And like I said, I think everyone assumes

00:46:47   that it's TV related,

00:46:48   but I think it could just as easily be iOS device related,

00:46:52   as in iPads and iPhones.

00:46:54   'Cause I think about all the crazy stuff that Samsung does

00:46:56   with their Galaxy phones,

00:46:58   with the stupid things that tracks your eyes

00:46:59   and like that you don't have to touch the screen

00:47:00   and how terrible that works.

00:47:02   And I think, all right, that's terrible.

00:47:05   But what if there was a way to do some tiny subset of that

00:47:07   better to an Apple level of quality

00:47:11   where they're happy with making this part of the iOS device

00:47:14   experience?

00:47:15   What can you do with the ability for your iPad or iPhone

00:47:19   to sense more about you than just where

00:47:21   your finger is touching in the orientation and acceleration?

00:47:25   So I think I would give it a 50/50 chance

00:47:27   that the technology involved-- the expertise

00:47:30   technology and everything coming from this company will show up in an iOS device just

00:47:35   as likely, I think, as it's showing up in a TV-like device.

00:47:37   And when I think about it in a TV-like device, I don't know what they would do with it.

00:47:41   I would imagine they could do something small and simple and like the proximity sensor,

00:47:46   but more sophisticated using the camera and more proximity sensors to be more intelligent

00:47:51   about something using an iOS device.

00:47:52   I don't know.

00:47:53   Whereas TV, what are we going to be, standing up in front of it waving our hands like we

00:47:56   are in front of an Xbox One?

00:47:57   I don't know.

00:47:58   I wonder if it could even be used in any way to support the back camera, maybe for looking

00:48:06   at the scene in a way similar to how phase-detect systems work in SLRs, maybe providing better

00:48:10   focus performance or a more accurate depth map of what's going on in the scene.

00:48:15   Maybe something like that.

00:48:16   Who knows?

00:48:17   Yeah, because you can do interesting—the Connect 2 is impressive technology.

00:48:21   I don't know if it doubled the resolution of the Connect 1 or quadrupled it, but it

00:48:24   is way better.

00:48:25   it can sense fingers now, whereas the Kinect one can barely sense hands. So the technology

00:48:31   has come a long way, and obviously you can't fit something like Kinect size into an iOS

00:48:36   device, although you could in a little TV bar type thing. But there's surely something

00:48:40   you can do if you can get IR, color image, edge detection, and depth map from these multi-sensor

00:48:47   things. Surely there's something interesting you can do about that, even if it's only just

00:48:52   It's like kind of having the phone have more awareness of what the person who's using it

00:48:56   is doing.

00:48:57   Even if you never use it to control the phone or whatever, just so the phone kind of knows,

00:49:01   they're staring at me, they're not.

00:49:03   I'm in a pocket, I'm not.

00:49:04   I'm being held up to a head, I'm not.

00:49:07   Just those simple things could make the phone experience better without ever actually exposing

00:49:10   a feature to the user.

00:49:12   And for the TV thing, again, I have no idea because no one has any idea what the hell

00:49:15   they're doing on TV, but it is intriguing to say the least.

00:49:18   Am I the only one who doesn't really care what they're doing on TV?

00:49:21   Yeah, I think you are the only one. I just think like I don't like the Apple TV

00:49:26   I would love for the software to be more reliable and for the service that backs at the entire iTunes store

00:49:32   For that to be more reliable and and and work more

00:49:35   but the actual like Apple TV

00:49:38   box and and software experience

00:49:42   I think

00:49:44   satisfies my needs for what I want out of a TV-connected box.

00:49:48   And I know everyone wants more channels and more availability

00:49:52   and live shows and everything else.

00:49:53   And that's more an issue of content deals than anything

00:49:56   else.

00:49:57   And that's probably going to be held up no matter what

00:49:59   they do with the hardware.

00:50:01   But I'm fine with the TV as it is.

00:50:04   I have Netflix, and everything has Netflix.

00:50:07   I have Netflix on there, and I have iTunes-bought stuff.

00:50:11   And that's about all I really need.

00:50:13   What else are they going to do?

00:50:14   You have minimal TV needs because if you are more like the average American who consumes

00:50:18   some portion of sports programming, some portion of local television, and also some portion

00:50:22   of network and cable, the experience is terrible because all those things are spread out in

00:50:26   ten different places.

00:50:27   I mean, even you, just for the two places, like, "Oh, is that on Netflix?

00:50:30   Let me check.

00:50:31   Oh, is that on Apple TV?

00:50:32   Let me check."

00:50:33   Even just that is bad, but imagine if you multiplied that out by like three or four

00:50:35   or five places to check, and then you had way more content, some of which is not available

00:50:40   online, some of which you had to see like, the only way you could get it was it was broadcast

00:50:46   to you and it would be on iTunes later and maybe you don't want to wait a week because

00:50:49   then the things will be spoiled for you.

00:50:52   If you consume more television from more sources it gets worse and worse and worse and everyone's

00:50:56   just waiting for something to clarify this in the same way that Apple clarified music,

00:51:01   granted it's a lot easier to do that with music, but hey there was five big labels or

00:51:05   whatever in the US.

00:51:07   You could just go to iTunes to inspire music, you don't have to go to seven different places

00:51:10   and synthesize some sort of system that I have a DVR to catch this and then I have Netflix

00:51:14   and then I have Apple TV and then I have Amazon Instant Video and then I have these devices

00:51:18   and I can watch my TiVo on my iPad but I also watch Netflix on my iPad but I can't watch

00:51:22   Apple TV on the iPad but I can watch it directly from the iTunes store and it's television

00:51:27   continues to be a giant mess.

00:51:29   Again, I'm speaking only about the US.

00:51:30   I don't know what it's like in the rest of the world.

00:51:32   So the more TV you consume and the more you use it, the worse it is.

00:51:36   Maybe you're still limping along with just Apple TV and Netflix and that satisfies you

00:51:39   but I think you're in the minority in terms of your television consumption habits.

00:51:43   Well sure, but how many of those problems are really software and content deal problems,

00:51:49   or not even like a software limitation, but more of a software choice that Apple has made.

00:51:53   So software choices and content deals versus hardware and interface problems.

00:52:01   Like if they did some kind of big connect like thing to the Apple TV,

00:52:04   then we could wave our arms around to navigate the same small menu

00:52:08   full of limited choices and expensive options. Like that's, it's, that's not going to, that's

00:52:13   not going to change anything.

00:52:14   We're not just looking for a hardware software solution. We're assuming, I mean, was iTunes

00:52:18   a hardware software solution? The iPod, iTunes, and the store was everything. It was hardware,

00:52:22   it was software, and it was content deals. That's what we're looking for is something

00:52:25   to save us all from everything. And if you just want to look on the hardware and software

00:52:28   side, you can look at the iPhone as an example, where all they had in the beginning was hardware

00:52:33   and software. But the hardware and software was so amazing that it was used as a lever

00:52:37   try to, I mean it didn't revolutionize the carrier industry, but it gave the handset

00:52:42   maker more leverage than they ever had before and it allowed us to have cell phones not

00:52:46   crapped up with the stupid carrier edware and crap like that on it.

00:52:50   That wasn't a big change, but it was an improvement.

00:52:53   And so I think even just alone with totally adversarial evil things like carriers, Apple

00:52:59   was still just through the power of its amazing hardware and software and the power of the

00:53:02   consumers that wanted it affect some small change in the industry, at least again, at

00:53:07   least in the US, for the better.

00:53:09   So I would take that in the television world.

00:53:11   If Apple can't do any content deals and everyone hates them, just make some amazing device

00:53:14   that everybody wants that makes television better for the people who are using it and

00:53:18   use that as a lever to say, "Oh, well, if Time Warner Cable doesn't want to be part

00:53:22   of our thing, then all the people who want our magic dance in front of the TV device

00:53:26   are going to be pissed at Time Warner and are going to change carriers."

00:53:29   people were going to AT&T from Verizon or whatever because it was the only place that

00:53:33   had the iPhone. Again, these are long shots. I'm not saying this is going to happen, but

00:53:39   something.

00:53:40   You can see part of that today, though, whenever there's some kind of dispute between one of

00:53:44   the networks and one of the big cable companies, and the networks pulls themselves off the

00:53:48   cable channel for like two weeks, and the idea is that the networks hoping the cable

00:53:54   company will say, "Oh, come back to us. All of our customers are angry at us." Usually

00:54:01   they just kind of quietly figure something out and nothing really changes in the end.

00:54:08   People often look at—I think we're seeing this a lot more recently from smart analyst

00:54:12   type people. You can look at the PC market in the 90s. So many things that we consider

00:54:20   like common behavior or the way things work is based on the Windows and Mac divide in

00:54:27   the 90s. And as time is going on, the smart analysts are starting to look at this and

00:54:33   say, "Actually, that seems more like a complicated fluke than the way things actually work."

00:54:40   Open doesn't always win, whatever that means. Hardware being multi-vendors and software

00:54:47   running on all of it versus the unified vertical integration doesn't always work or not work.

00:54:55   There's all this wisdom that's been based on how this one instance of something worked

00:54:59   — one time in the industry — when in fact it's much more complicated than that and

00:55:03   it doesn't always work that way.

00:55:04   I think the way iTunes came about and the iTunes Music Store, I think that's one of

00:55:10   those things too, where that was a very special time in history that we're not in a time

00:55:15   at that anymore with any other medium or any other situation or industry. That was a one-time

00:55:21   thing, and I don't think that anybody, Apple or otherwise, is going to be able to reproduce

00:55:26   that in a new medium.

00:55:28   Not the severity, but I think the same thing could happen over a much longer timeline,

00:55:32   because there was like a big boom with iTunes.

00:55:34   Maybe. I would say the breadth, though. The breadth is where it's going to really suffer.

00:55:38   Well, that's what I'm saying. It'll start off small. And what I'm thinking about there

00:55:42   is not so much Apple doing it, but Netflix funding its own shows.

00:55:45   Did they overnight obviate the need for the networks and HBO? No, they didn't.

00:55:49   But you get one or two shows that people like, and it's like, okay, you didn't do a big bang,

00:55:54   you didn't wipe them out, but suddenly a tiny, tiny sliver of the power in the content distribution

00:55:59   world went over to Netflix, this thing that has no allegiance to any kind of carrier or anything

00:56:04   like that. They got like two shows, so what? But if they did that every year for the next 15,

00:56:09   20 years, you can foresee a scenario where either Netflix or a similar player pulls power away from

00:56:14   the cable companies and the carriers and you know all the other stuff until most or a majority of

00:56:22   the shows that people want to watch are being funded in a way that has no connection to any

00:56:26   cable provider or any television network. That would be an example of an iTunes-like change

00:56:31   instead of happening in three years happening in 15 or 20. Yeah, you know, I was thinking about it

00:56:36   while you guys were talking and I'm not so sure that you're right Marco that the iTunes

00:56:40   kind of phenomenon couldn't be repeated. What I was thinking about was if you think about

00:56:46   what made iTunes as paired with the iPod so magical is to me it's a couple of things.

00:56:53   It's acquiring something, it's acquiring media and then consuming it. And so iTunes allowed

00:56:58   you to acquire individual songs which was very rare at the time. I mean yeah there were

00:57:02   They were singles, but it was weird and clunky.

00:57:05   And you could acquire these songs without leaving your house, which was really awesome

00:57:08   and new.

00:57:09   And then you could, when you decided to leave your house, you could consume them on this

00:57:13   magical new hardware device.

00:57:15   And you guys made allusions to this earlier, but a theoretical Apple TV where you can acquire

00:57:22   content very easily, and the content I'm thinking of is sports content.

00:57:26   And I know that Marco's eyes just glazed over, but for most Americans, and I would argue

00:57:31   most of the world, sports are a big deal. And a lot of people pointed out in the chat

00:57:37   that the NFL has—that's the National American Football League.

00:57:40   That's not the NAFL.

00:57:41   Well, you know what I mean. So they have an exclusive deal with DirecTV, which is a satellite

00:57:47   provider here in the United States. And that runs out, I think, at the end of the season,

00:57:52   if not the end of the season, very, very soon. And a lot of people are calling on Apple to

00:57:56   just throw money at this problem and get that exclusive deal. And what that exclusive deal

00:58:00   brings is if you're a DirecTV customer, you can get what's called NFL Sunday Ticket because

00:58:05   all the games are played on Sundays, most of them anyway, and you can watch any game

00:58:08   you want when it's aired live.

00:58:11   And so for me as an example, I happen to be a fan of the New York Giants.

00:58:14   I live nowhere near New York.

00:58:16   I actually live near one of their rivals, the Washington Redskins.

00:58:19   And as such, I only ever get Giants games if it just so happens that Redskins or any

00:58:25   of the other local franchises aren't playing at that time.

00:58:29   So imagine a situation where the NFL and Apple reach an exclusive deal.

00:58:36   So now you can get the content you want, which is the acquire piece, because you can watch

00:58:41   any game you want.

00:58:42   And the MLB already does this, Major League Baseball does this, the NBA, I believe, already

00:58:46   does this, or I think the NHL does.

00:58:48   I'm probably getting some of that wrong, but whatever, you get the idea.

00:58:50   Well, imagine a combination of NFL, NASCAR, and F1, all of them easily available on the

00:58:57   the Apple TV both live and replay and all you need to do is either pay Apple a little

00:59:03   bit or just buy the darn device transporter style.

00:59:06   And then on top of that Apple has this really slick UI.

00:59:09   Well I like the UI in the Apple TV, maybe you don't, but it's certainly a lot better

00:59:13   than most set top boxes like my Verizon box looks like crap compared to the Apple TV.

00:59:18   So now you've got the content or you can acquire the content and now you can consume the content

00:59:22   in a nice and easy way.

00:59:23   I see some, not direct parallels with iTunes and the iPod, but certainly some parallels

00:59:29   nevertheless.

00:59:30   I don't know that sports is enough to really get them over the proverbial hump, but I think

00:59:34   it could be a really, really interesting way to attack traditional TV without having to

00:59:42   go after movies and TV shows in the traditional sense.

00:59:47   To reinforce Marco's point, the big difference here is that the players know, the players

00:59:51   saw what happened to music. And so everybody is super paranoid about putting too many eggs

00:59:55   in one basket. So if Apple, by some miracle, decided to spend the billions of dollars it

01:00:01   would take to get the NFL to that degree, any other sports franchise would be like,

01:00:05   "We sure as hell can't go with Apple," because then they would have two sports franchises.

01:00:08   And look what happened in music. It's not collusion, but they all kind of see what each

01:00:13   other are doing, and they're all kind of trying to protect their turf and spread their bets.

01:00:18   It's like, just like the music labels, as soon as Amazon became viable, all the music

01:00:21   labels were like, "We gotta go over there and just give Amazon everything because we

01:00:24   cannot have Apple have all this power as like the sole one and only awesome digital music

01:00:29   distribution network."

01:00:30   So all of the non-music guys saw what happened in music, and that's why it's so hard to do

01:00:35   anything with TV, because they're not gonna make that same mistake.

01:00:39   And that's why I think it has to be a much longer period.

01:00:42   And probably, like, the way it's going to happen is the power that's in the hands of

01:00:47   the networks and the cable companies now will shift to a set of companies that look more

01:00:52   like Netflix, if they're not necessarily Netflix.

01:00:54   I don't think Apple is going to be in the business of generating content.

01:00:57   So far, they haven't shown that they're willing to, for example, put up a couple hundred million

01:01:01   dollars to make a new TV show.

01:01:02   So all Apple can do is make deals with somebody.

01:01:04   And I would imagine dealing with Netflix is way easier than dealing with NBC or the NFL.

01:01:10   And so maybe there's some synergy there.

01:01:12   That being said though, I think you're right that once one sports franchise gave

01:01:17   exclusivity to the Apple TV or to Apple in general, I think that would give pause to

01:01:22   the others. However, if that one was the NFL, I think that's enough. Like even, I think

01:01:30   enough people, and obviously the rest of the world couldn't possibly care less, but in

01:01:34   the U.S., and this is one of the problems with TV is that it's very regional. In the

01:01:41   U.S., if you get the NFL, you're going to get a crap ton of people buying Apple TVs.

01:01:48   And that's really what they want. What they would want out of this kind of effort would

01:01:52   be tons and tons and tons of people buying the Apple TV and having a really good reason

01:01:58   to use it frequently. And if you get the NFL exclusive on there, you're going to get that.

01:02:03   You're going to get a lot of that. And people are not going to give up their cable subscription.

01:02:10   they're still going to have cable. So not getting the other sports networks wouldn't

01:02:14   matter as much. This would basically be like an exclusive console game. This would be a

01:02:19   killer app for the Apple TV for a very large number of people in this country.

01:02:24   Yeah, every time we talk about TV, it's just depressing because there are so many

01:02:29   entrenched interests, and then we always have to keep coming back to the realization, "And

01:02:33   this is just the US we're talking about, and Apple is a global company, and it cares

01:02:37   about worldwide stuff, and you can kind of see how Apple, in their own meetings, would

01:02:40   be like, "Look at all this crap, and we're only still talking about the US. Forget about

01:02:45   it. Let's just, you know, whatever." Well, that's why I think they delegate that to,

01:02:48   "Let's let Netflix fight it out and either die trying or figure out something to do."

01:02:53   And even Netflix is, I think, mostly US-centric as well. I think the other countries have

01:02:57   better ways to get the content they want over more modern digital systems than we do. Maybe

01:03:02   Maybe they still have the same monopoly problems that we do, but I think people can see the

01:03:08   soccer games that they want to see through some interesting digital thing that's near

01:03:12   them, whereas in the US, the local television franchises still have such a stranglehold,

01:03:17   and with the local blackouts and stuff like that, it's just perverse.

01:03:21   So it's depressing.

01:03:23   But I'd still like to see Apple do something.

01:03:25   Even if they do something and it flops, if the first thing you know is to succeed, keep

01:03:30   trying.

01:03:31   The first couple weren't that great, but the little black pluck is pretty darn good.

01:03:34   So if there's more to come in that vein and they're buying this Kinect-like sensor company,

01:03:38   well, let's see what you got, right?

01:03:40   I do think you're right, though, that I can't really see Apple devoting a massive chunk

01:03:46   of money and a massive division of their product line, and therefore their attention, to something

01:03:52   that only works in the US or will only succeed in the US.

01:03:57   That's not like Tim Cook, that's for sure.

01:03:59   Well, but what if you did something like the NFL, but it's applicable to the rest of the

01:04:04   world, like F1, for example, or soccer, perhaps?

01:04:07   Well, the Apple-style move is, "Oh, hey, now our television is also an app platform, and

01:04:13   you crazy app developers in every region of the country, you sort out how the hell to

01:04:17   get your stuff."

01:04:18   Kind of like the MLB app.

01:04:20   They made an app platform on iOS devices.

01:04:22   They didn't do a deal with Major League Baseball.

01:04:23   They made an app platform, and then MLB made the app, and then figured out its crazy way

01:04:27   that you're going to pay for it or whatever.

01:04:28   But that's an opportunity for people.

01:04:30   And that is an Apple move, because a platform is global.

01:04:33   And then individual applications are local.

01:04:36   That is true.

01:04:38   Do we want to move on to the sweet jobs that

01:04:41   are available at Penny Arcade?

01:04:44   I don't know.

01:04:45   I don't know that there's that much more to say about this.

01:04:46   I kind of vomited all over Twitter all morning about it

01:04:49   and wrote that big post.

01:04:51   But people haven't read your blog or read your Twitter.

01:04:54   So you have to reiterate and summarize here.

01:04:56   And as someone who works for the man, Marco, you know quite a bit about these sorts of

01:05:01   issues.

01:05:02   Shut up.

01:05:03   I used to work for various men.

01:05:07   Do you remember that?

01:05:08   It was a long time ago.

01:05:10   No, I think—so Penny Arcade put up this job listing for one person who's responsible

01:05:19   for basically developing and running all their websites and servers and all their in-house

01:05:26   tools, like various inventory trackers when they sell goods and stuff like that, managing

01:05:31   their conference sites, stuff like that, and also doing all of their local IT for their

01:05:37   workers in their office.

01:05:39   And in exchange for all of this, they will force you to be a workaholic.

01:05:46   They kind of flippantly glorify how you won't have any kind of free time.

01:05:53   they'll work you to the bone and you'll like it

01:05:56   and they'll make up for it by paying you a subpar salary

01:06:01   and giving you some kind of nice perks in the office,

01:06:06   like I don't know, like nice chairs and snacks, whatever,

01:06:09   something that would cost a lot less

01:06:10   than a good salary would cost.

01:06:12   And the whole posting has this arrogant attitude

01:06:19   of like, this is really a terrible job

01:06:21   you're going to love it and we're going to get tons of applicants.

01:06:23   Now, really quickly, genuine question. You're assuming that the salary is crummy, right?

01:06:29   No, they say it in the ad. They say we recognize that we're going to play,

01:06:34   I don't know the exact words, but they say that we're going to pay maybe below market because

01:06:39   we're not a money-oriented company or something like that and we run lean.

01:06:44   I mean, the ad is honest in the Penny Arcade style of honesty. Have you ever seen a job ad

01:06:50   before where they say, "Work-life balance? Forget it." That's basically what this says.

01:06:55   Every place always says, "Oh, we have great work life." They lie. The places that don't

01:06:59   have great work-life balance, they still say in the job ad, "Oh, we're great about work-life

01:07:03   balance." In fact, if they talk a lot about work-life balance too much in the ad, that's

01:07:07   also a warning sign. But this one, they come right out and say, "No, you're not really going to have

01:07:11   a good work-life balance. Work will be your life. That's the type of person we're looking for.

01:07:15   That's the type of job this is." Yeah, I don't know. The whole thing just kind of

01:07:19   of rubbed me the wrong way. It just basically…my problem with it…there's a lot of terrible

01:07:25   employers out there, and the tech industry is no exception. My problem with it is that

01:07:30   Penny Arcade is very high profile, and it's damaging to people when they expect that this

01:07:36   is the norm, that they should totally give themselves up to their job and have no personal

01:07:41   life, and that this is what's normally expected of them in this industry. And yeah, that's

01:07:46   Yeah, that's true for a lot of employers. That doesn't make it good. And that doesn't

01:07:50   mean there's not also a lot of great places to work that actually respect people and respect

01:07:55   people's health and respect people's lives and want people to stay there for more than

01:08:00   a couple of years.

01:08:03   Reading the forum posting from the guy who has this job now, and he kind of said, "I

01:08:10   I chose this and therefore get out of my life kind of thing.

01:08:13   But it just kind of confirms what we think

01:08:17   they mean by the job posting.

01:08:19   It just kind of confirms that, where it's constant work.

01:08:22   You're on call 24/7.

01:08:24   He says he can't go on vacation anywhere where he's not

01:08:28   reachable by cell phone and can't get a data connection

01:08:31   to log in and fix a server if it's down.

01:08:33   He sleeps with his laptop next to the bed.

01:08:35   Right.

01:08:35   And I did a lot of this for Tumblr,

01:08:37   which is why I'm sensitive to it.

01:08:40   This was my job at Tumblr for the first four years.

01:08:44   The difference was I was paid very well

01:08:47   and I got a lot of stock.

01:08:48   And that I think was fair.

01:08:51   I was doing the work of a co-founder

01:08:55   and I was paid like a co-founder.

01:08:58   And that's very, very different than something like this,

01:09:03   which is they already have something like,

01:09:05   what was it, like 20 employees somebody said?

01:09:07   They already have a lot of employees.

01:09:09   They run a very popular website that gets a lot of traffic.

01:09:14   They actually run multiple websites

01:09:16   that get lots of traffic.

01:09:17   There's obviously, they could have two people doing this.

01:09:22   They don't need to have one person doing all this

01:09:23   that's paid very badly,

01:09:24   or they could have one well-paid person,

01:09:27   and they're choosing not to

01:09:28   because they simply don't need to

01:09:31   because they're so popular that enough people will apply

01:09:35   that they can get somebody who will do it

01:09:36   for almost nothing.

01:09:37   And that's-- - Well, the other thing

01:09:38   their offering is you get to be an employee of Penny Arcade.

01:09:41   And the work-life balance that they say doesn't exist, it's because they kind of have this

01:09:45   big work-family thing going, where the people who work there seem to be happy about the

01:09:51   idea that the people you work with are like your family, and the stuff that you would

01:09:58   get in a normal home life, you can get more of at work.

01:10:01   And I think some of the things in this forum said, "Well, some people do leave at five

01:10:04   or whatever."

01:10:05   But that's the trade-off, though, is that you may not be getting high pay or something,

01:10:13   but you get presumably to work in an environment that's much more fun than just working for

01:10:18   some faceless corporation because you really like Penny Arcade because you think you'll

01:10:21   have fun with the people there.

01:10:22   And a lot of their interview process, if you look at their past interviews, is about trying

01:10:27   to find someone who not only can do the job, but also fits in with all the other people

01:10:31   because they're almost kind of like interviewing a new friend.

01:10:34   We're like, okay, so this person can do the job,

01:10:36   but we're only going to hire them

01:10:37   if we would like to hang out with this person,

01:10:39   because we know that's kind of our work environment.

01:10:41   We're all going to be hanging out together and doing stuff.

01:10:44   And that sounds a lot like a startup-type environment

01:10:48   with a bunch of friends who start a company.

01:10:50   And like Marco said, that's all well and good,

01:10:52   but I know I personally would never in a million years

01:10:57   want to do this job if I was not also going to benefit

01:11:01   from the fruits of my labors.

01:11:02   If you are in a startup and you are an early employee

01:11:04   and you work like this,

01:11:05   because that's how everybody in startups works.

01:11:07   They all do this.

01:11:08   They all do 50 jobs, they all work ridiculous hours,

01:11:09   they all don't get paid a lot

01:11:10   'cause it's not a lot of money,

01:11:11   and you gotta spend the venture capital on servers

01:11:14   and acquiring new customers and stuff.

01:11:16   But the upside is that if you make it,

01:11:18   you share in the victory,

01:11:20   like Marco shared in Tumblr,

01:11:22   he got Tumblr stock and when they sold to Yahoo,

01:11:24   he shared in that.

01:11:26   He didn't do all that work

01:11:27   and then they just quit and leave with nothing, right?

01:11:31   So if you're in this job, basically no one

01:11:34   should work this hard, no matter how young you are,

01:11:36   no matter how awesome the job is,

01:11:37   no one should sacrifice the other parts of their lives

01:11:40   to this degree if they don't share in it.

01:11:41   And that, I think, to me personally,

01:11:43   the reason I wouldn't take this job

01:11:45   and the reason I would not recommend

01:11:47   anyone else take this job is that it seems to me,

01:11:50   it's so hard to tell because this is a privately held company

01:11:52   but it seems to me that some people are benefiting greatly

01:11:56   from what appears to be the success of Penny Arcade

01:11:59   and those people are the founders of the company,

01:12:01   like the two, you know, Mike and Jerry and Robert,

01:12:04   are benefiting greatly from it financially, it seems like.

01:12:07   Again, we don't know, we can't tell,

01:12:09   they've talked a little bit about it,

01:12:10   but it seems like they're making a lot.

01:12:12   The rest of the people in the company,

01:12:13   it doesn't seem like, are benefiting as greatly.

01:12:16   And if you're going to have a startup-type environment

01:12:19   where you're asking this of all the people involved

01:12:21   and the people are willing to do it and they're happy,

01:12:23   I feel like they should be sharing

01:12:25   in the success of the company

01:12:26   because this is not like a new startup.

01:12:27   They've been around for years.

01:12:29   And this team of people has made

01:12:31   a very successful enterprise.

01:12:33   I feel like maybe they don't all share equally,

01:12:35   but that whole idea that seven people work their butts off

01:12:38   and three people get rich drives me insane, right?

01:12:42   Because I mean, most of the time nobody gets rich.

01:12:44   Seven people work their butts off

01:12:45   and everyone goes home sad, right?

01:12:47   But in the cases where seven people work their butts off,

01:12:50   three people shouldn't get rich, seven people should get rich

01:12:52   maybe three people who get richer,

01:12:53   but that's what I feel like should happen.

01:12:55   I can't from what I can tell in the outside doesn't seem like that's happening and again

01:12:59   I'm framing this all as why I would not take the job and why I would recommend someone didn't take it

01:13:03   but I think the much more interesting question is

01:13:05   Is this a bad thing to do if everybody who works at penny arcade is happy with their job?

01:13:11   So I think you guys are judging this from a very similar angle to the way I judge it

01:13:17   However, it is not the only angle and the reason I say that is because my first job straight out of school was

01:13:25   at this company that made slot machines and

01:13:28   The group of, it was all guys at the time, the group of guys that worked there were all

01:13:36   expats from EA

01:13:39   who had bought up the company that they had all sort of kind of co-founded. It was a game company called Kesmai based out of

01:13:46   Charlottesville, Virginia and

01:13:48   by pure happenstance a large majority of these guys

01:13:53   either didn't have children or didn't have any immediate family. So no wives and no kids.

01:14:00   And so,

01:14:02   especially a couple of the guys there, like my boss when I first got there, who I adore,

01:14:06   he didn't happen to have a wife and didn't happen to have any kids. And so because of that,

01:14:11   he just ended up working a lot. And he put on this exterior shell of,

01:14:19   "Oh, I don't, you know, this job is a pain in the butt, but it's a job and this is what I do."

01:14:23   But I think if you allowed me to armchair—be an armchair psychiatrist—

01:14:29   I think he worked a lot partially because it was the most interesting—maybe not interesting,

01:14:34   but it was a really good way to occupy his time.

01:14:37   And so I envisioned Penny Arcade in a similar way.

01:14:41   Not to say that these people don't have kids or they don't have families,

01:14:44   but there are people that really do just love working a lot.

01:14:48   And my boss at this place worked absurd hours, like 80 or 100 hours a week.

01:14:53   But nobody was really telling him to, or at least I didn't think so anyway.

01:14:57   He just enjoyed doing work.

01:15:00   And he worked six days a week.

01:15:02   Nobody else did, but he always did.

01:15:04   And I'm not trying to say that he didn't have other things in his life.

01:15:07   I'm not trying to say that he necessarily enjoyed every moment of it.

01:15:10   But in certain circumstances, there are people that really do, like you guys were saying,

01:15:16   to have a work experience that kind of is their lives. Is that me? Heck no. I think

01:15:22   I speak for you guys in saying that it's certainly not you guys either. But for some people that

01:15:27   is. And if you put yourself in that mindset, how would you write a job posting? To be honest,

01:15:33   I'd write it kind of like this.

01:15:34   But see, the thing is, like, Robert Koo is that person. He, by his own admission, has

01:15:39   sacrificed many other parts of his life to be successful in business. He is the reason

01:15:43   Penny Arcade exists in the form it does now, he sacrificed his life to make this amazing company.

01:15:49   He deserves, you know, all the credit for that. The two artists, of course, were the spark of this

01:15:54   entire thing. Nothing exists without them. So clearly, those three, you know, deserve more

01:16:00   than anybody else. But, like, for Robert, that was his choice. He came up, he said, "This is the life

01:16:06   I'm going to leave. I'm going to make this great thing. And I understand the sacrifices involved

01:16:10   for it. For the two other guys, they have wives and kids, and my impression is yes,

01:16:13   they work hard and everything, and yes, there are many demands on their time and so on and

01:16:16   so forth, but it seems like their work-life balance isn't all that bad. I mean, again,

01:16:21   it's so hard to tell with happenstance, and that's why I was getting back to like, what

01:16:24   if all their employees are happy? And people talk about like this job burns people out.

01:16:28   Penny Arcade's been around for 15 years, and this job has had two people in it. So like,

01:16:32   you know, seven and a half years each. It's obviously not a machine that burns through

01:16:36   people or whatever.

01:16:37   seven and a half years each. The first one was there for like eight years or longer even.

01:16:42   The guy who's quitting now has only been there for like two years.

01:16:45   Well, either way, it's like two people in the position for over the 15-year life of

01:16:50   the company. It is not a mill where they bring in people and they burn them out and bring

01:16:53   in people and burn them out.

01:16:54   Well, but it has scaled up over that time as Penny Arcade has scaled up. The job has

01:16:58   scaled up. So I think it says something that they had a guy there for a long time. He left.

01:17:04   It got really big, he left.

01:17:07   A new guy came in, he did the job, and is quitting after only two years because he needs

01:17:11   more money.

01:17:12   Yeah, but giving back to the same point, and I'm not implying an answer here.

01:17:17   My real question is, if all their employees are happy, is the company still mean for making

01:17:22   a job like this?

01:17:24   Right, I'm saying the same thing.

01:17:25   If all the employees enjoy hanging out with the other employees a lot, and enjoy working

01:17:31   a lot, which is a big assumption. But if that's the case, like if I was one of those people,

01:17:36   like my boss at my first job, and I wanted to write a very forthcoming and honest job

01:17:42   posting, it would probably look a lot like this. Does it make it right? Not necessarily.

01:17:47   But would I ever apply for it? Heck no. But it would look a lot like this.

01:17:52   So I think my opinion on whether this is inherently a bad job posting is there are some inherently

01:17:58   bad aspects of it that a lot of people point out. The inherently bad aspect of it is not

01:18:02   so much for the people taking the job and not so much for Penny Arcade, but for the

01:18:06   industry for the position that they're hiring for. Because the availability of positions

01:18:11   like this devalues the work that those people do. Having a company that is attractive enough

01:18:16   in the intangibles that they're able to ask for people to sacrifice their entire lives

01:18:21   and take below market pay, it's not so much that they're able to do that, it's so much

01:18:26   that the existence of companies that are able to do that makes the rest of the industry feel like

01:18:31   they can turn down the dials on their hiring. It makes it seem like, "Well, you're expected to work

01:18:36   like a dog." And, "Well, you're expected not to make too much money." And if too many companies

01:18:40   do that, it makes it seem like, "Oh, everybody who works in IT can never go on vacation."

01:18:45   And it's like, "No, you're not Penny Arcade. You can't do that because what are you giving me?"

01:18:51   what makes me sad is that this position is this job description is like an honest description of

01:18:57   many things like you know insurance companies or big fortune 500 companies that are just as

01:19:01   terrible as the subscription sounds but they lie in their applications and they're not fun places

01:19:06   to work and they don't give you anything to balance off of this but still the existence of

01:19:09   penny arcade and the bill it's kind of like marco has talked about this on past shows and like life

01:19:14   isn't fair right the idea of developers and designers doing work for free devalues the work

01:19:19   of developers and designers. And it's like, well, why are they doing the work for free? Sometimes

01:19:22   they're doing the work for free because it's fun, because they're a college student and it's fun to

01:19:26   make apps and it's fun to do designs. And you're trying to make a living doing it and you're like,

01:19:30   "God damn, these people doing work for free, they're devaluing the work of everybody who does."

01:19:34   They are, they are devaluing it, but they're doing it because it's fun and because they're

01:19:38   intangibles. And that's a rough situation to be in. And you could say, "Penny Arcade should have

01:19:43   a broader view and say, 'We don't want to devalue the work of IT workers, and so we're going to try

01:19:49   try to – we have a more of – I guess we would call it environmental awareness, but

01:19:53   in a job market sense instead of the actual environment. That would be a reason not to

01:19:59   do this. That would be a reason that this job posting is a bad idea regardless of how

01:20:04   happy the employee is, and not because the person who gets this job is going to be sad,

01:20:08   and not because Penny Arcadia is an evil company, but just because of environmental factors.

01:20:12   The second reason this job posting is bad is different, and I think is much, much more

01:20:16   concrete and that this would be my appeal to Robert Koo, never have one IT person.

01:20:21   We just talked about backups for a million years. Just as a person who runs

01:20:25   a business, this is a bad move business-wise. It seems like Penny Arcade

01:20:30   does not correctly value the role of web applications and you know technology

01:20:38   infrastructure in their company because there's a big company, there's a lot at

01:20:42   stake here. Never trust that torn person, not because you're exploiting them, not

01:20:45   Not because no one person can do this, not because you should pay them more, don't pay

01:20:49   one guy 10 times his salary.

01:20:51   You need redundancy.

01:20:52   You absolutely, positively need redundancy.

01:20:54   And I think web stuff and online services is such an important part of the penny arcade

01:20:58   empire as it exists today that there's no way that I think there's any justification

01:21:03   to have a single person that does this for the sake of the company, for the sake of the

01:21:06   founders, for the sake of the other employees.

01:21:09   Nothing to do with what the job is like.

01:21:11   You just cannot have one person.

01:21:12   You cannot.

01:21:13   side effect that if you have two people then one guy can actually go on vacation. There's

01:21:16   many upsides to that, but ignoring all that. Pretend he's just like an evil turn of the

01:21:20   century industrial revolution, you know, robber baron. Don't have one guy. You gotta have

01:21:26   redundancy. So that would be my appeal to the penny arcade guys, that it's insane that

01:21:30   a company this big and successful is going to have one IT guy.

01:21:33   Especially because their website being up, or websites being up, is such an important

01:21:39   part of their business. I would imagine, I know they run PAX and that's probably a pretty

01:21:44   big business, but I would imagine the majority of their income probably still comes from

01:21:48   ad views on the site. Do you think that's fair to say?

01:21:50   I would say it's an even split between PAX merchandise and advertising on a site. But

01:21:55   again, it's privately held companies, hard to tell. But they have multiple lines of business

01:21:59   and they're big, but the thing is all of them have some aspect of it that involves websites

01:22:02   and services and electronic transfers of money.

01:22:04   Obviously, they're going to lose a lot for any moment that the site is down.

01:22:10   And the longer it's down, the more they're going to lose.

01:22:12   It's not like if some restaurant has their website go down, who cares?

01:22:17   They might lose two customers in a weekend if they can't see the website and figure

01:22:21   out their hours.

01:22:22   But for something like this, yeah, you're right, that is very important.

01:22:26   And part of it, I should even point out now, now that I'm thinking about this, my job

01:22:30   at tumblr wasn't quite this extreme because David could log in and fix things. He wasn't

01:22:35   as good at it as I was.

01:22:37   Yeah, you weren't the only one.

01:22:39   Right. That was like his secondary ability. His primary ability was coding all the front

01:22:44   end and the middle layer, but he could log in and fix servers to some degree when I was

01:22:50   not available. Which wasn't that often, but he could do it, and he did do it. And sometimes

01:22:55   he could only slightly manage things until I got back. Sometimes he could fix the problem

01:22:59   completely. And the only reason that it was acceptable to have all of that even resting

01:23:06   on me was because there were only two employees. That was it. It was just two of us for so

01:23:11   long. That's why it was okay because there was nobody else available and we couldn't

01:23:15   afford anybody else for a very long time at the beginning.

01:23:18   The thing is, you can get away with it. They get away with having one person in 15 years.

01:23:22   It's not like I'm saying that you're doomed you can't have one person. The fact

01:23:24   that they can get away with it, I think it's just penny-wise pound foolish. Ignoring whether

01:23:28   that person shares in the success of the company to the degree I think they should and none

01:23:32   of us can know because we don't know how big their bonuses are or whatever, although they

01:23:34   didn't mention any equity, but whatever.

01:23:36   Ignoring all of that, and I'm willing to give them all the benefit of the doubt on that

01:23:40   as a matter of fact because the few things they have said publicly, one of them is that

01:23:44   they're constantly getting buyout offers because who wouldn't want to buy them because they're

01:23:47   just a money-making machine.

01:23:51   When they entertain buyout offers, what the guys in charge did said, "If we take this

01:23:55   buyout offer, we're going to dole out the money to all of the people in the company."

01:23:58   And that would be correctly sharing the income.

01:24:00   It was like, we're not going to take a buyout

01:24:02   and the three founders leave and you guys just are out

01:24:04   of a job or whatever.

01:24:05   It was, if we take this money, we're going to divide it--

01:24:08   probably not evenly, but we're going

01:24:10   to divide it amongst all employees, as if all

01:24:12   the employees had equity in the company, which as far as I know

01:24:14   they don't legally have equity in the company.

01:24:16   But that was what the founders did.

01:24:17   They're nice guys.

01:24:18   They're looking out for their people.

01:24:19   Again, this is like a family.

01:24:21   And when they took a vote, they let the whole company

01:24:23   vote on this.

01:24:24   And not a single person voted to take the buyout.

01:24:27   Even though they knew, like, if we do this, you can get some large, presumably large amount

01:24:31   of money.

01:24:32   Not a single person in the company voted because all the people in the company wanted to, yeah,

01:24:35   Marco can identify with this, they wanted to continue to be masters of their own destinies.

01:24:41   They wanted to continue to be the family that decides, we decide what Penny Arcade does,

01:24:45   we collectively, we 12 or 20 people in this room, we are Penny Arcade, we don't want to

01:24:49   sell out.

01:24:50   It's more important to us than the money to continue to be able to steer our own ship.

01:24:56   And I think that speaks to the kind of company it is.

01:24:58   I just think one IT person, just as they don't have a single artist in the company, they

01:25:04   have multiple artists doing multiple things and multiple comic strips, and one person

01:25:08   is not enough.

01:25:09   It also looked like from the current job occupants post in the forum, from his description of

01:25:15   his work and his skills, it really does also look like he's not a very knowledgeable

01:25:20   sysadmin and that his main focus is development, not server administration or infrastructure

01:25:27   management, you know, running load balancers and stuff. And most of that he just pays Rackspace

01:25:31   to do. And that's actually very expensive, by the way. But most of that he pays Rackspace

01:25:37   to do. And so it actually sounds like they don't really have a dedicated sysadmin at

01:25:42   all. Like, it isn't even that this person's doing all four of those jobs with equal weight.

01:25:48   He's mostly a developer, and he happens to do a little bit of system administration,

01:25:51   but for the most part, most system tasks seem to be going undone, or at least inadequately

01:25:56   covered.

01:25:57   It's kind of like when a company that's not a software company tries to write software

01:26:00   internally.

01:26:01   They don't quite know what's involved with doing software.

01:26:03   Penny Arcade seems like a company that—if your company was like Dropbox, where your

01:26:09   whole company is this software and web service that you provide, the whole company's focused

01:26:14   around that.

01:26:15   And Penny Arcade is a creative company.

01:26:16   whole company is focused on creative endeavors, and they do the creative stuff great, right?

01:26:21   They don't think of themselves as a company as like, "Oh, we run a website." The website

01:26:25   is like just how we get our creative outlet to people, and it seems like they either don't

01:26:29   know how to manage or don't know how to value it correctly, because yeah, you're right.

01:26:32   Paying all that money to Rackspace, again, penny-wise, pound foolish. And for the Penny

01:26:36   Arcade Expo ticket sales, I think they outsourced that this year to some other company that

01:26:41   does ticket sales things, and it did not go well. It went the same. Everyone used to use

01:26:46   like CoverItLive or whatever, those live blogging platforms that were out there.

01:26:50   I tried to buy tickets for PAX this year, and it was the same situation as like CoverItLive

01:26:55   where the site was down and you were in a queue and you couldn't get pages to load,

01:26:58   and then it would load without the CSS and you couldn't tell if you've purchased anything.

01:27:03   That was -- they outsourced that, and that didn't work well either.

01:27:06   That is a core part of their business.

01:27:07   They should be investing in it way more than they are.

01:27:09   Yeah, it's almost as if, in the Tumblr early example, it's almost as if they already have

01:27:15   hired a David, but they haven't hired a me. Like, they have, like, I mean that in the

01:27:20   least arrogant way that I can say it. Like, they have the front-end developer and, like,

01:27:25   the middleware developer, and they haven't, like, this is the job of two people, at least,

01:27:31   and they've only hired for the front half of it, and not for, like, the back-end half.

01:27:36   And of course, they're not gonna pay somebody enough to do both, if they can even find one.

01:27:39   Yeah, the pay thing though, the ad is honest to a fault, but we don't have numbers.

01:27:47   So you don't know, like maybe they think they're paying below market, but they're still actually

01:27:50   offering a reasonably good salary.

01:27:53   Or maybe they're offering a ridiculously low salary.

01:27:54   We can't tell from the ad.

01:27:56   All we can tell is from the people who work there.

01:27:58   And this one person who's leaving, it's hard to tell from them.

01:28:01   The guy who was there for eight years obviously enjoyed it and probably just moved on to something

01:28:06   else in his life.

01:28:08   don't have a lot of turnover in their company. They do run it more like a family. It seems

01:28:11   like all the people who work there are happy with it. Otherwise, why would they stay? It's

01:28:14   not like a place where, you know, and some people are making a big deal about the, you

01:28:20   know, it's an offensive work environment or whatever. Someone was saying that's like legally

01:28:25   a boilerplate. And that sounds vaguely plausible to me because at least one job that I worked

01:28:30   at, I had to sign a thing that said, you know, as the chorus, in a matter of course of doing

01:28:34   this job and doing competitive research, you may come across websites that other people

01:28:37   find offensive and blah blah blah.

01:28:38   Basically it was just saying you may see porn sites as part of your work and you promise

01:28:41   you won't sue us because of it, right?

01:28:45   Because they're out there on the web and you may be going.

01:28:49   If you work at Penny Arcade and it's a comic strip that has adult themes and doing competitive

01:28:54   research you may run across other things or whatever, that seems like actually kind of

01:28:58   a reasonable thing to say up front to people that like, presumably you're familiar with

01:29:02   Penny Arcade, but just so you know, this is what it's about.

01:29:05   this is what you may come in contact with. It is not, I think, trying to have people

01:29:09   sign away their rights to be sexually harassed or something, because I have to believe that

01:29:13   if anything like that was going on inside Penny Arcade, we would hear about it, right?

01:29:17   Like that they're not the NSA, they're not CIA, they're not silencing people as they

01:29:21   go out the door. Everyone who works there seems to like working there. They all seem

01:29:25   to like each other. The people who leave do not leave disgruntled and hating it. Maybe

01:29:29   it's like a cult and they're brainwashing everybody, but I have a really hard time believing

01:29:32   that. I still think this is an ill-advised hiring decision and I sure as hell wouldn't

01:29:38   take that job myself, but I definitely have mixed feelings about is this good or bad for

01:29:47   the person who ends up taking that job and being happy with it? How can you say if someone

01:29:51   takes that job and they're super happy with it for, you know, even if they're only happy

01:29:56   with it for two years? People sometimes are in jobs for less than two years. Who are you

01:30:00   to say to that person they shouldn't have taken that job. Maybe in retrospect they will

01:30:04   feel like they shouldn't. I know if I took that job and then grew to my current ripe

01:30:07   old age I would regret having taken that job, but that's me. Everyone's different, so I

01:30:12   don't know. I don't know what to think.

01:30:14   I mean, to wrap this up, because I think we're running a little long here, I think that it's

01:30:19   a complicated issue because it divides people along the same lines as like how much the

01:30:26   government should mandate about how things are done or how you live your own life. And

01:30:32   people are so split on issues like this. Labor laws almost always have this kind of problem,

01:30:37   where it's like, well, if the government or the society's expectations are from critics

01:30:44   like us, we might say, oh, well, having workaholism be the norm is really bad. And you need to

01:30:53   to have codified vacation schedules and limited hours or paid overtime to discourage constant

01:30:59   overworking and stuff like that, you have issues where a lot of people think that that

01:31:07   should be regulated. That the government should step in and say, "Well, it's really better

01:31:13   for people overall if you live by these rules or follow these guidelines or restrictions

01:31:19   or limits. It's kind of like a parent role. We know better for you than what you're

01:31:25   claiming. So even if the employer wants you to do something and you agree and you will

01:31:29   do it and you're happy doing it, the government might say, "That's actually worse for

01:31:34   people in general, so we're not going to allow that." And that's a very controversial

01:31:39   thing.

01:31:40   Similar to that, all of our opinions on this, like you said earlier, Casey and John both,

01:31:45   If the employees there are happy in that environment, is it really that bad?

01:31:51   And so I think we can't really—you know, we can say this is bad in general, and generally

01:31:57   you shouldn't take this job.

01:31:59   But if they happen to find somebody who will take that job, which they probably—they

01:32:03   almost certainly will very easily because they have such a big following, we can't

01:32:08   really say like, "That person's an idiot."

01:32:10   Like, they're making that choice.

01:32:12   But I think we can say in general, you shouldn't do things like this.

01:32:17   But even that's controversial.

01:32:21   You should, even for the person taking that job, you can't be sure that you're going to

01:32:25   like it as much as you do.

01:32:27   And talk about labor laws and stuff like that.

01:32:30   In general, this is all sort of, talk about first world problems here.

01:32:35   Labor laws, there's so much low hanging fruit in terms of stopping the Walmarts of the world

01:32:39   not paying their employees enough.

01:32:41   person's going to be paid enough to get food on the table, right?

01:32:45   So in the grand scheme of things, it pales in comparison to the worker exploitation that

01:32:49   happens lower down in the scale of things.

01:32:51   But for our little enlightened world of developers and stuff, this is like the crazy equivalent

01:32:58   of that among developers, is that we've probably all been in jobs where we felt like we were

01:33:03   overworked and we felt like we weren't appreciated and didn't share in the success of the company.

01:33:07   And we see this is the place where that could happen.

01:33:09   So beware, don't go in thinking it's all going to be Rose and Sunshine because it's

01:33:13   really, really tough.

01:33:14   And especially when we see a young person doing it where they don't know, they don't

01:33:16   know they're going to like it.

01:33:17   They don't know if they're going to be happy because they don't have any experience with

01:33:19   anything.

01:33:20   And maybe they'll think they'll like it and maybe, you know, the burnout is definitely

01:33:23   a possibility.

01:33:24   Maybe they'll be happy for the first year and realize, "I can never go anywhere and

01:33:27   I'm miserable and I've sacrificed my entire life and I didn't realize I was doing it."

01:33:30   It's mostly like you're trying to help people go in with their eyes open.

01:33:33   And I think the brutal and honest ad kind of helps in that, but it also kind of makes

01:33:38   it seem more exciting and daring to young people with less experience of like, "Oh,

01:33:41   I'm going to do this thing because it's super hard and everything."

01:33:45   In general, it's not...

01:33:47   Even if they were fixed on this stupid plan of hiring a single person to do all these

01:33:51   jobs, there were better ways to go about presenting that position to have a better chance of finding

01:33:58   a successful match with someone who really will be happy in that position.

01:34:01   I don't know.

01:34:04   private companies is difficult, but we should all just wait outside the company for that

01:34:08   person to leave one, two, three, four, five, six, seven, ten years from now and say, "How

01:34:12   was it? Was it what you thought it was? Were you happy?"

01:34:15   We told you so. Get off my lawn.

01:34:17   I mean, maybe. We didn't tell you. Maybe they're going to love it. Maybe they're going to think

01:34:20   it's awesome. I have to say, having consumed tons and tons of Paneerahic content over the

01:34:25   years and seeing all of what their work life is there, many times I've said, "Boy, I wish

01:34:28   my work was like that. Boy, I wish I cared about my coworkers the way they apparently

01:34:32   care about theirs, right? And that's why they get all these employees and we just

01:34:35   we just want them not to take advantage of that and like exploit somebody. It's like,

01:34:39   we know we have this environment that looks awesome on camera and secretly

01:34:43   inside we're evil and we're going to abuse this person but and we're gonna

01:34:46   get some sucker in like that's that's what we fear but we don't know what's

01:34:49   going on so it's that's a fear but you can't say that's definitely what it's

01:34:52   like inside Penny Arcade. I don't know, I definitely have mixed feelings. And this is even this is not

01:34:56   even touching the Mike's many foot-and-mouth disease problems and his

01:35:01   these major problems, understanding, I'm not even going to get into these topics. I

01:35:05   don't think you guys know about them, but it's probably not appropriate for a tech

01:35:07   show. But this job listing is.

01:35:09   All right, then.

01:35:10   Let's wrap it up. Thanks a lot to our two sponsors this week, Ting and Warby Parker,

01:35:16   and we will see you next week.

01:35:17   [Music]

01:35:18   Now the show is over They didn't even mean to begin

01:35:25   'Cause it was accidental Oh, it was accidental

01:35:31   John didn't do any research, Marco and Casey wouldn't let him

01:35:36   'Cause it was accidental (accidental)

01:35:39   It was accidental (accidental)

01:35:41   And you can find the show notes at ATP.fm

01:35:47   And if you're into Twitter, you can follow them

01:35:51   @c-a-s-e-y-l-i-s-s

01:35:55   So that's Casey List, M-A-R-C-O-A-R-M

01:36:00   Anti-Marco Armin, S-I-R-A-C, U-S-A, Syracuse.

01:36:07   It's accidental.

01:36:09   Accidental.

01:36:11   They didn't mean to.

01:36:13   Accidental.

01:36:14   Accidental.

01:36:15   Tech broadcast so long.

01:36:20   Penny Arcade is a divisive issue, a company

01:36:27   that engenders strong feelings.

01:36:28   So we'll see if we get tons of feedback from the people who hate Penny Arcade and

01:36:32   say that we were defending it too much, and from the people who love Penny Arcade and

01:36:35   say we were saying bad things about it.

01:36:37   Or maybe we'll get almost no feedback at all, which means that there's no overlap

01:36:40   in our audiences.

01:36:43   I wonder, what do you think will be more hated?

01:36:47   Our collective opinion on the Penny Arcade job posting, or me or Casey?

01:36:55   Why can't it be both?

01:36:57   That's probably the right answer.

01:36:59   I really hated Margot and Casey's opinion of the bit.

01:37:01   No, I think I'll get the worst of it, because the problem with trying to be like, to have

01:37:05   a position that's nuanced, where like, you acknowledge the unknowns in the situation,

01:37:10   that like, all we have to go on is this job posting at a bunch of videos and none of us

01:37:14   really know.

01:37:15   And you know, like, that uncertainty and that hedging seems like, well, you're defending

01:37:19   them, you're saying they're better.

01:37:20   I'm just acknowledging the unknowns.

01:37:21   And people hate that, because it's not, they just want to see you decisively come down

01:37:25   for or against, and that sort of wishy-washy—they interpret it as wishy-washy, but I feel like

01:37:30   it's accuracy, it's acknowledging the unknowns. You can't make definitive statements without

01:37:34   more information. And that comes off as not as—certainty is much more attractive and

01:37:40   interesting, and so they want you to be certain about something, and I can't.

01:37:43   Oh, I'm pronouncing divisive wrong? Provise of?

01:37:47   I've always heard divisive. I bet if I looked it up in the dictionary

01:37:50   now it would tell me there's two pronunciations. Anyway.

01:37:52   You know, I almost called you out on it, but since I've gotten burned, I've burned

01:37:56   myself so bad on these things, I feel like Richard Pryor.

01:37:59   I've lit myself up trying to smoke, if you will.

01:38:02   Not literally, but figuratively.

01:38:04   And so I refuse to make any sort of commentary on grammar or pronunciation issues.

01:38:08   It says one pronunciation, divisive.

01:38:10   Oh well.

01:38:11   It's a divisive issue.

01:38:13   I'm still way ahead of Groover on mispronunciations.

01:38:18   Your problem, John, is that you're a fan of Penny Arcade.

01:38:22   You actually know them. You're closer to them than me and Casey.

01:38:26   I don't even know them. I read the comic, though.

01:38:28   Well, yeah. Casey and I, as far as I know Casey, we don't give a shit about Penny Arcade.

01:38:32   Nope.

01:38:33   I never got into the comic. I've known of it for, I don't know, years, a decade.

01:38:40   But I've never read it regularly. I've never really cared.

01:38:42   And honestly, when people link me to it, I don't even find it that funny.

01:38:46   It's just not my kind of thing.

01:38:48   Yeah, you have to be a gamer. It's a gamer's comic.

01:38:50   But you're actually close enough that any opinion you make, and as you said, by having

01:38:57   a nuanced hedged opinion, anything you say is going to actually anchor both sides.

01:39:03   The people who don't like them from this job posting are going to be like, "You didn't

01:39:07   come down hard enough."

01:39:08   And the people who are fans of them are like, "You traitor!

01:39:10   You're one of us!"

01:39:11   Yeah.

01:39:12   But the thing is, it's like the cult of personality where you think you know people who listen

01:39:16   into their podcasts and everything,

01:39:18   and at a certain point, reading Penny Arcade for 15 years

01:39:21   and going to all the conventions,

01:39:22   you start to feel like you know the people,

01:39:23   and when they do terrible, stupid things,

01:39:25   if you don't know them, you just simply condemn them

01:39:29   and say, "You have done a terrible, stupid thing."

01:39:31   If you do know them, you're like,

01:39:32   "Oh, damn, you did a terrible, stupid thing."

01:39:34   If your friend does it, don't you wanna talk to your friend

01:39:36   and say, "What are you doing, man?"

01:39:39   'Cause they've done lots of terrible, stupid things,

01:39:41   and even though I don't know these people at all,

01:39:44   the feeling I get is not like,

01:39:45   "Hey, there's this thing I never heard of."

01:39:47   Like, you know when someone links you to something

01:39:48   where someone said something dumb

01:39:50   and you have no idea who it is,

01:39:51   all you know is like,

01:39:52   "Oh man, this person is a terrible person," right?

01:39:54   Like some YouTube video of some person

01:39:55   saying something terrible,

01:39:56   or some politician you never heard of

01:39:57   saying something terrible.

01:39:58   You just instantly go,

01:39:59   "Well, that guy's a bozo," right?

01:40:01   But if someone links you to like,

01:40:02   your brother saying something terrible,

01:40:04   you wanna talk to your brother and say,

01:40:06   "What are you doing, man?"

01:40:06   I, you know, you'd hopefully say,

01:40:08   "I know you're not as terrible as that is,"

01:40:10   or, "Maybe you are as terrible

01:40:11   and we need to talk about it," or whatever.

01:40:12   And that's how I feel about the Penny Arcade stuff.

01:40:14   There was a good post from MC Frontalot, which is a musician and also a friend of the guys,

01:40:19   with a similar conflict going, "You're doing a terrible thing."

01:40:23   But I know you guys have it in you to, A, realize that it's terrible, and B, fix it.

01:40:30   And seeing them not take those two steps, not seem to realize what was wrong with what

01:40:33   they did, and not seeming to fix it, is just so frustrating.

01:40:36   And a lot of people are just sort of cutting ties.

01:40:38   They were like, "You've had three strikes, you're out.

01:40:41   You keep doing these dumb things and maybe they just don't have people around them explaining

01:40:45   to them what the problem is or maybe they can't internalize it.

01:40:48   And it's a tough situation.

01:40:51   And again, I feel like I have this unspoken relationship with these people where I totally

01:40:56   don't the same way that people feel like they know us because they listen to our podcast.

01:41:00   And so, yeah, I definitely am closer to it.

01:41:01   But what I don't want people to think is because I'm close to it, I defend these terrible things

01:41:06   they do, which again, I don't want to get into.

01:41:08   But it's simply the job posting itself.

01:41:10   I don't think that was the right way to go about that on so many different levels, despite

01:41:14   the fact that I acknowledge that it is very possible that the person who takes that job

01:41:18   will be happy with it and will come out of the company saying, "I was glad I took that

01:41:22   job."

01:41:23   You know, it's funny hearing you talk about knowing someone who does something stupid

01:41:27   and seeing a stranger do something stupid.

01:41:31   And I feel like, Marco, that's why you get burned a lot because you're very passionate

01:41:36   and very opinionated, which in and of itself is not bad.

01:41:39   But I think that a lot of times you come across as arrogant and because I know you, and both

01:41:44   of us know you as well as we do, I don't think a thing of it.

01:41:47   And then I'll see, and I can't think of a great example, but I'll see the internet go freaking

01:41:51   nuts because Marco said this ridiculously arrogant thing.

01:41:54   And to me, I'm just like, "Wait, what?"

01:41:57   Because I know you and I know enough about where you're coming from to know that's probably

01:42:03   not how you meant it.

01:42:04   Or even if it is, you meant it at level two out of 10 and the internet's taking it as

01:42:09   is a level 10 out of 10.

01:42:10   And it's a very similar thing.

01:42:12   And so it's often funny for me to watch

01:42:14   some of the skirmishes you either get yourself into

01:42:17   or put yourself into.

01:42:19   Because not always, but most times, I'm like,

01:42:22   oh, well, yeah, it's just Marker being Marker, whatever.

01:42:24   - But you get graded on a curve.

01:42:26   Once you have any amount of fame,

01:42:28   that scrutiny is much higher.

01:42:29   And Penny Arcade, that's not excusing them at all.

01:42:31   Penny Arcade has tons of fame, and guess what?

01:42:34   You get the good and the bad that comes with it.

01:42:35   I mean, same with the Marker.

01:42:36   Would you rather have people not care what you say,

01:42:38   or overreact about what you're saying.

01:42:41   And that's the price of--

01:42:42   Yeah, depends on the day.

01:42:43   I know, but that's the price of being well-known.

01:42:46   That's the price of being successful in your endeavors,

01:42:48   is that things you say are going to be scrutinized.

01:42:50   I mean, the biggest example is any kind of politician,

01:42:53   or the president, or whatever they say anything.

01:42:54   They fart the wrong way.

01:42:55   They say they don't like broccoli,

01:42:56   and it's an international incident.

01:42:57   Remember that?

01:42:58   But maybe you don't, George Bush.

01:42:59   Anyway--

01:43:00   Yeah, we were alive for that.

01:43:02   That comes with the territory.

01:43:04   And the poor plenty arcade guys, A,

01:43:06   up doing legitimately bad things, and B) rail against the unfairness of being held to the

01:43:14   standard that they didn't want to sign up for. And I understand the emotion, but you have to realize

01:43:19   that comes with the territory. There's no ninja move where you're like, "Haha, but I don't accept

01:43:27   that you're going to scrutinize me, therefore my actions shouldn't be taken as seriously as

01:43:31   as they are, it's like, you don't get to decide that, right? You do speak for a large media

01:43:36   conglomerate empire, your words do have more in effect than they would if you were a regular

01:43:40   person. You can't go back to being a regular Joe. Yeah, that's the way it is. I feel like

01:43:47   I should just, if I just sit down with them for like, okay, maybe it would have to be

01:43:50   on an island for a month. Because sometimes I feel like I was with Steve Jobs. If I could

01:43:54   just get Steve Jobs in a room, I could convince him of X, Y. I'm like, no, realistically,

01:43:57   he would walk out of the room. I need to have him prisoner in a nice way so that they can't

01:44:03   run away. And eventually, it's like in that movie where there's a prisoner or even just

01:44:08   like a student who in the beginning they hate the teacher and they hate the teacher for

01:44:11   the first six months, but then they finally come around and then the real work gets going.

01:44:13   That's what you need. I feel like someone should be able to talk to these guys and explain

01:44:18   to them what it is they're missing because I really believe they can be turned around.

01:44:21   I just haven't done it yet.

01:44:23   Well, I don't think they think there's anything wrong with this.

01:44:27   I know, that's problem zero. There it is. Maybe someone could explain it to you. Maybe

01:44:33   no one's explaining it the right way. Let me explain it again. Here's what's wrong.

01:44:38   It's hard when you get as much crap as they get, which I can only begin to imagine. I

01:44:45   get some small fraction of that amount of crap, and I'm always surprised in the new

01:44:54   ways that I've accidentally offended people. Like, it's like every week I accidentally

01:45:00   stumble upon a new way that I've offended somebody. And it gets to me, it really does,

01:45:06   because I want to be a nice guy. I don't want to be a dick. I don't want people to think

01:45:11   I'm a dick. But you're just so good at it. But I really don't mean to be. That's totally

01:45:16   unintentional. But you would learn from your mistakes. Again, I don't want to get into

01:45:22   specific instances, but they'll say something that is unintentionally sexist or transphobic

01:45:28   or something, and they literally don't know what they just did wrong. And that's the problem, right?

01:45:34   And the worst reaction is to get defensive and double down on it, and that's what they do.

01:45:39   They get defensive and double down on the wrong thing that they did. And it's like,

01:45:42   that's the whole thing of trying to educate someone. If you do something that is legitimately...

01:45:46   If you said something that actually is arrogant, the way you said it is dismissive of other people

01:45:52   and whatever. I feel like that you learn from that experience and learn to say the same thing

01:45:56   in a different way or be more clear about what you're saying, right? Or express your

01:46:01   sentiment more accurately so it's less likely to be misinterpreted the wrong way. But I don't think

01:46:05   you've ever been in a situation where you said something that is like totally wrong and terrible

01:46:10   and doubled down on it and were like, "No, actually, screw you and let me tell you why.

01:46:16   I'm going to say that even more." Like that total emotional reaction. Your reaction always is,

01:46:20   is introspective and, well, not always.

01:46:24   Sometimes you have moments.

01:46:25   - No.

01:46:26   (laughing)

01:46:27   No, that's the problem.

01:46:28   It's like my instinct, I think,

01:46:30   which is a natural instinct, is to be defensive.

01:46:32   And I look back on things that blow up

01:46:37   that I didn't mean to blow up,

01:46:39   and I look back on what I actually said and did

01:46:42   after it's all over, and I can see,

01:46:44   wow, I did completely the wrong thing.

01:46:46   I got defensive, I was being immature,

01:46:49   or angry or impulsive, I look back and I'm ashamed of it.

01:46:53   But it's easy to say--

01:46:55   - But you learn from it though, don't you?

01:46:56   But you don't make that exact specific mistake again, right?

01:47:00   - Yeah, but I find new ones.

01:47:01   Look, it's easy to say, oh, if I was in this situation

01:47:05   like this, I would do X, Y, and Z.

01:47:08   I would react this way.

01:47:09   But then when you're actually in that situation,

01:47:12   a lot of times it doesn't turn out that way.

01:47:14   And it's so hard when your instinct is to be deficient

01:47:19   defensive or to say things off the cuff as if you're talking to a smaller group of

01:47:25   people who likes you more than the actual group of people you're talking to that's

01:47:28   much bigger, it's really hard to get used to that. And it's really hard to fundamentally

01:47:35   change your behavior and your personality to sand off those rough edges. I mean, I'm

01:47:41   31 and I still haven't figured out how to do that quite well yet. I'm trying, but

01:47:45   I really have not figured it out yet.

01:47:47   They're similar ages.

01:47:48   I think they're between you and I.

01:47:50   I think they're in their thirties.

01:47:51   They have kids a similar age.

01:47:53   They're trying to figure it out as well.

01:47:55   And that instinct to lash out, it's not just the instinct to lash out.

01:48:01   The things that you get called on are just so minor compared to the things they do wrong.

01:48:07   Well I think it's mostly because I have a much smaller audience though.

01:48:09   If I had an audience the size of theirs, I think I would get as much as they do, if not

01:48:15   because I'm even less experienced at talking to an audience as large as theirs as they

01:48:21   are.

01:48:22   Well, I mean, here's, I don't know, I'm not going to name names, but like, say you said

01:48:26   something like, you know, "Well, everyone knows the girls can't climb trees."

01:48:30   Like, you said something sexist like that, right?

01:48:32   And you didn't understand that that statement was sexist.

01:48:36   All you can see is about the tree climbing business, and like, you didn't understand,

01:48:41   conceptually, like, you're like, "What's sexist about that?"

01:48:43   That's just a statement of fact.

01:48:44   Everyone knows girls can't climb a tree.

01:48:46   You don't understand the broader context in which that statement is.

01:48:50   Then you double down on it, you could argue about it, and you get lost in the details.

01:48:55   There is a base understanding of what is at stake here that does not exist in your head.

01:49:01   And so even if you get to the point, as they frequently do, where they're in apology mode

01:49:04   and they're like, "We're sorry.

01:49:07   The last thing we wanted to do was offend people.

01:49:09   We care about all these people."

01:49:10   honest statements of apology but they don't understand what they're apologizing for.

01:49:13   they don't understand like the you know the the historical and cultural context

01:49:18   of sexism versus just the "I said something wrong" kind of at some point

01:49:23   and now I have to apologize for it but I don't really understand what I'm

01:49:25   apologizing for. that's that's their problem and they keep doing that over

01:49:29   and over again and nothing you have done has ever reached that that level of like

01:49:32   you not because you understand why someone is like if you say something

01:49:36   that's dismissive of like some programming language and people get you

01:49:38   understand it's because you were dismissive of programming. There's not like a millennia-long

01:49:43   oppression of PHP programmers that's like the context that you are completely unaware of or

01:49:47   not able to internalize. And it's hard. A lot of people are not able to internalize those things.

01:49:51   And one way is to just, you know, shun. And the other way is to try to explain to, you know,

01:49:58   they call them allies, like someone who wants to do the right thing but doesn't understand what

01:50:01   they did wrong, to try to bring them onto your side by explaining what they did wrong.

01:50:06   like those blowups I think serve a purpose because I feel like I have, and it's seeing not just them,

01:50:10   but every other internet blowup where someone says something and then some interest group jumps on

01:50:14   them and shreds them to bits, has made me more aware, not that like that interest group is

01:50:19   totally right and that guy is totally wrong, but just more aware of issues that I wasn't aware of

01:50:23   before in a way that gives me a bigger picture of like humanity, like makes you question your

01:50:28   assumptions about things that you hadn't thought about before. So that, you know, so I think I hope

01:50:35   some portion of the audience seeing these train wrecks is coming out of it like maybe

01:50:39   those people, those allies are being educated even if the people involved in the conflict

01:50:43   are not.

01:50:44   No, we should have a...

01:50:46   It's too bad I'm only on tech podcasts, because I would love to be on a podcast to talk specifically

01:50:49   about the issues involved in here, but it is not appropriate for a tech podcast.

01:50:53   You just make a new one, I mean, you know, what's another podcast?

01:50:56   Oh, please, no more podcasts.

01:50:58   I mean, if us three idiots can do it, then anyone can.

01:51:02   Oh, yeah.

01:51:03   It's funny. I was just complaining tomorrow. Maybe not complaining but lamenting is probably a better word to Marco

01:51:08   I think was earlier today that as part of my newfound notoriety is like an f triple minus list celebrity is I

01:51:15   Feel like I'm getting to the point and maybe it's just cuz I'm an idiot

01:51:18   But I feel like I'm getting to the point that everything I post anywhere in any capacity is met with a million

01:51:24   like silly critiques and

01:51:28   And it just gets it gets annoying and it gets frustrating and a lot of times

01:51:32   I want to engage and and where I think Marco and I are both learning is

01:51:37   I'm trying to get better about not engaging but my initial reaction is you know like somebody posted on Twitter

01:51:46   I forget what exactly they said, but something something along the lines of oh, you know, that's what it was

01:51:51   it was you know, I Sean Blanc had had asked me to do something for his new website and

01:51:57   And somebody had posted, you know, why the hell do I care what this this other guy has to say?

01:52:01   And I and so because I'm an idiot I engaged and I said something along the lines of well

01:52:05   you know, even the other guy has an opinion every once in a while and

01:52:08   The the response which I should have expected was something along the lines of you know, honestly, I don't like you or Marco

01:52:14   I just listen for John which is pretty much everyone that listens to the show

01:52:18   I think I remember this did you see what I responded to that person? No, I don't think I did

01:52:22   That's because I didn't CC you but if you can look at look at the thread

01:52:25   you'll see. Like, I rarely engage as well, but sometimes it's worth doing.

01:52:31   Maybe it wasn't appropriate for you to engage in that thing, and there's certainly times when I

01:52:37   don't. Here's the thing about it. A lot of times people will say that they don't like your whatever

01:52:44   thing. They don't like listening to your podcast. They don't care about your opinion. They will

01:52:49   be expressing in not so many words that they have different priorities than you do.

01:52:54   the fact that they're throwing that in your face may bother you, but you have to also say like,

01:52:59   it's okay for people to have a different opinion that's not like what you do.

01:53:02   Like, all right. Like, there's nothing, there's not an argument to be had. You're not going to

01:53:08   turn them around. You're not going to, it's not my job and not my desire to find everyone who doesn't

01:53:13   like me and convince them they should like me. Right? The only thing I will engage on is people

01:53:18   being mean for no good reason and people getting facts wrong. And even those I will selectively

01:53:23   gauge on. So if people get facts wrong, I will correct them because that is something where

01:53:28   there is an argument to be had. And I only do that if I'm feeling energetic. And people being mean,

01:53:33   most of the time I will let that slide. But today, when I saw that tweet that you were talking about,

01:53:38   I didn't want to let that slide. And I think my response was, "Don't be a jerk." Because seriously,

01:53:43   don't be a jerk. That's just being a jerk. You don't like them? Fine. You don't like what they

01:53:49   have to say? Fine. Don't keep throwing in their face and saying, "We don't like you. We don't

01:53:53   like anything you say, but okay fine don't listen to the show, the end period, don't be a jerk about it.

01:53:57   And so that's, you know, that's like it's okay not to like them. It's not, it's nothing wrong

01:54:03   with them. Maybe you don't like listening to them, there's plenty of things that I don't like to

01:54:05   listen to or watch either, but I don't know, seek the people out and tell them how much I don't like

01:54:10   them repeatedly. That's just being a jerk. Yeah, I think people, people who don't get a lot of

01:54:15   random strangers giving them feedback would probably be shocked at how much crap you get

01:54:22   when you have a lot of random strangers giving you feedback on the internet.

01:54:25   Just for an extreme version of this, look on Twitter, look at the @reply stream of a celebrity,

01:54:33   or somebody who has hundreds of thousands of followers or more. Look at Gruber's

01:54:38   celebrity, look at Gruber's stream, look at his @replies. Look at anybody who has a large following

01:54:46   who says anything of any value ever.

01:54:50   And you're gonna see hundreds and hundreds of people

01:54:53   calling them an asshole and telling them they're an idiot.

01:54:55   And when you put yourself out there,

01:54:59   once you get any size audience at all,

01:55:03   you're gonna get a lot of really good feedback from people.

01:55:05   And you could get 100 positive emails and tweets a day

01:55:10   saying that they liked what you wrote and that was great.

01:55:13   And then you get four idiots who tell you that you're just a moron and they hate everything you do.

01:55:21   And it's really, you know, for some people who have a thick skin, you know, it's easy to let that,

01:55:28   you know, just roll off your back and, okay, that's fine. Some people, it bothers them.

01:55:34   And I think that is the natural reaction, is for that to bother you. And I'm one of those people.

01:55:39   it bothers me. And every nasty thing that I get bothers me.

01:55:48   So my recommended thing to Casey, I told him earlier where I am, my strategy for this is

01:55:54   if somebody says something uncivil or by my definition unreasonable in some way over Twitter,

01:56:02   I just block them. First time, first offense, don't care, block, and then it's gone.

01:56:06   modern Twitter clients, when you block somebody,

01:56:08   actually remove the tweet from your timeline.

01:56:10   You stop seeing it.

01:56:12   And generally speaking, a lot more hate

01:56:17   comes from a lot fewer people than you think.

01:56:20   And so you might have like four guys who troll you

01:56:25   with everything you write or say.

01:56:27   And the same four guys every time.

01:56:29   So if you just hand out four blocks,

01:56:31   you're eliminating like 80% of your trolling that you see.

01:56:34   And I know that a lot of people, and Jon, even you just said,

01:56:37   like a lot of people would engage with that

01:56:40   or try to comment or fight back.

01:56:42   And I found that almost universally never to be worthwhile.

01:56:47   And almost universally always makes everything worse

01:56:50   and makes me get more angry or annoyed

01:56:53   or feeling bad about it.

01:56:55   Like it just builds the negativity.

01:56:56   And the best way for me to handle it is just to remove it

01:56:59   because I can't deal with that.

01:57:01   Like, Joel Spolsky left blogging because of this.

01:57:05   Like, Joel on Software, there's so much good stuff on there, but because he wrote things

01:57:09   with strong opinions to an audience of programmers, he got the worst crap from people ever in

01:57:15   addition to all the positives.

01:57:16   And he wrote in one of his last, like, main posts when his blog was still active, but

01:57:20   he was basically saying he's quitting, one of the things he wrote was, like, he could

01:57:23   get a hundred positive comments and one negative one, and that negative one would bother him

01:57:27   all day.

01:57:28   And I totally get that, because I'm the exact same way.

01:57:30   Oh yeah. If you can learn to, not to say that you should, because I think you should do whatever

01:57:36   it takes to, you know, have an even keel, and if it's blocking that's what it is, but as someone who

01:57:41   usually, I very rarely block, I block spammers obviously, but I very rarely block people who

01:57:47   are being jerks to me, because if you can learn to absorb that, there is very often some kernel

01:57:54   of truth in the negative feedback that you get, particularly in the negative feedback that you

01:57:59   hate the most because if someone says something to you like if they said to me that I'm tremendously

01:58:05   overweight that would not bother me because I'm not tremendously overweight, right? But if they

01:58:09   say something that's close to home, right, then that bothers you more. And the closer they get

01:58:13   to the truth, even if they're super mean about it and aren't, you know, if they're saying it much

01:58:19   worse than it is, if there is some kernel of truth, you tend to have the most visceral negative

01:58:22   reaction to that. And if you can learn to absorb that, what you can do is come away from it and

01:58:28   learn from whatever that kernel of truth is,

01:58:31   figure it out, examine it,

01:58:32   and try to improve on that axis going forward.

01:58:34   If you think it's an important thing to improve on,

01:58:36   maybe that person saying you're doing something

01:58:38   that they think is bad that you think is good,

01:58:39   then fine, whatever, ignore them.

01:58:40   But if it really bothers you

01:58:43   because you also kind of deep down agree

01:58:45   that that's a bad thing,

01:58:46   you work on it and try to make it better.

01:58:48   It doesn't mean you have to absorb tons of abuse

01:58:50   to make this happen.

01:58:51   You could still block the person or whatever,

01:58:53   but the anti-pattern is totally blocking out

01:58:56   negative feedback and just sort of becoming a Hollywood rock star where you don't let

01:59:01   anything negative – you become Tom Cruise.

01:59:03   I don't know what this means, Tom Cruise.

01:59:05   But anyway, where you don't let anything negative in and you start living in your own

01:59:09   bubble and that's your way to deal with things.

01:59:11   You don't want that to happen.

01:59:13   You don't want to isolate yourself so much from feedback that you are inside a bubble.

01:59:17   And I found that most people, if you call them on their BS, most people will be a little

01:59:25   They'll do a little bit of introspection if you do it in the right way.

01:59:29   It's very difficult to do.

01:59:30   You have to disengage yourself from the process.

01:59:31   But one example is, remember the Iowa 7 kid video?

01:59:34   The kid who was crying about Iowa 7, we talked about on the show, right?

01:59:38   So I tweeted that before, I think it was before the show, I tweeted that.

01:59:41   And some person responded to me and said, "Boy, that kid, your kid is a big brat," or

01:59:47   something like that.

01:59:48   And so there's two things wrong with that.

01:59:50   One, that's not my kid.

01:59:51   And two, it's a seven-year-old, or five-year-old, whatever it is, crying about things that five-year-olds

01:59:56   cry about.

01:59:57   Right?

01:59:58   And so I could have just ignored that.

02:00:00   I'm not going to convince them that that kid is not a brat.

02:00:03   That's not my goal.

02:00:04   But they got a fact wrong.

02:00:05   So I said, "That's not my kid," which is true.

02:00:08   And I didn't try to say, "And you would know that if you listened to the bloop."

02:00:11   No, I just said, "That's not my kid.

02:00:13   Want to correct the fact?"

02:00:14   And the second thing is, I said, "That's not my kid, and that's an unkind thing to say."

02:00:17   Because it's an unkind thing to say.

02:00:19   You're gonna say a kid you see in a video who's just a little kid who's crying at some

02:00:21   point is a brat?

02:00:23   That is an unkind thing to say.

02:00:24   And that's it.

02:00:25   That's all I said.

02:00:26   And this was an older woman who said this or whatever.

02:00:28   And right or wrong, you know, you think like this older woman should be saying, people

02:00:31   are, all sorts of people are mean.

02:00:33   This person was not convinced by my, you know, they agreed that it was a mean thing to say,

02:00:37   but then also tried to, you know, justify why they said it.

02:00:40   Okay, well, I'm glad that's not your kid, but I still think they're kind of bratty.

02:00:43   And that was it.

02:00:44   Like, I'm not going to pursue that further.

02:00:46   But I think that tiny piece of feedback I gave them, correcting the fact and saying

02:00:50   that they were being unkind, hopefully they gave them a moment's notice of saying, "Yes,

02:00:55   I was saying an unkind thing about a five-year-old on the internet just now."

02:00:59   And maybe they dismiss it and move on with their life, but I hope that's planting a little

02:01:01   seed in there, reminding them that, you know, that's not a nice thing to say.

02:01:06   And if that was my kid, maybe my reaction would be much more violent and I would block

02:01:10   them and I would argue with them, but like that, you know, the correct reaction, if you're

02:01:13   going to engage at all is to try to help that person realize what a jerk they're being.

02:01:17   Well, right. And what you said is exactly correct, which is like, you know, when the

02:01:21   criticism is a little bit true, that's what hurts the most. And I think, Jon, you're exactly

02:01:28   right that blocking out sources of negative criticism completely is not good. That's really

02:01:34   bad. I mean, one thing I love about putting myself out there online is that I get challenged

02:01:41   on so many things that it forces me to become a better person.

02:01:44   It makes me a better writer, it makes me a better thinker,

02:01:47   it makes me a better person to have so much constant feedback,

02:01:51   good and bad.

02:01:53   The problem is you have to draw a line somewhere.

02:01:56   You have to be able to distinguish

02:01:58   between good feedback and people just being unreasonable

02:02:03   or being trolls.

02:02:05   And when you have a large audience,

02:02:07   you're going to get a lot of both.

02:02:09   And you also have to make sure that you're not gonna get

02:02:13   such a massive deluge of negative feedback constantly

02:02:18   that it will discourage you from continuing

02:02:21   to be present there and make you leave the internet

02:02:24   or stop doing something.

02:02:25   I have so many horrible vocal traits.

02:02:30   Somehow, not a lot of people have called me out on it

02:02:33   in public because people aren't that mean, I guess.

02:02:36   And so I'm able to have a career as a podcaster.

02:02:39   I would never have thought five years ago that I would be making a good chunk of my

02:02:44   living from podcasts because I'm not a good speaker at all.

02:02:49   I have so many problems.

02:02:50   I've thought about going to a speech therapist as an adult to fix weird things I do when

02:02:54   I talk, but I haven't had a pressing reason to yet because no one's called me out on it.

02:03:00   But it's important to distinguish between people being mean for invalid reasons or just

02:03:08   being mean because they're mean.

02:03:10   Right.

02:03:11   Can I jump in here?

02:03:12   Because I think I have a great example.

02:03:14   So this person we were talking about earlier that was being a troll was just saying, literally

02:03:20   this person said, "I wish there was a way to mute out Marco and me."

02:03:25   And that's just really not necessary.

02:03:27   And like John said, John replied and said, "Don't be a jerk."

02:03:30   However, I've seen a lot of feedback from myself, things like, "Why do you hedge so

02:03:35   much?

02:03:36   You don't need to do that."

02:03:37   say, "Well, here's this big long opinion, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah," but that's

02:03:41   just what I think. I don't need to do that. That's not necessary. That is

02:03:45   sometimes hurtful feedback because it strikes close to home, just like you were

02:03:49   saying, but it's good and positive and constructive feedback as opposed to, "I

02:03:55   wish I could mute you two idiots." That's just not helpful, and

02:03:59   there is a big difference between the two. Right, and if

02:04:04   If so many, if like hundreds of listeners told you after the very first show you hedge too much,

02:04:11   or if hundreds of listeners told me after my very first podcast that they don't like the way I talk,

02:04:15   we almost would have certainly stopped and left.

02:04:19   And you know, that's, then like, you know, then everyone loses.

02:04:22   We lose, people who like the show lose, you know, so like, that's bad for everyone.

02:04:27   So it really is important to have some kind of balance, and you can't control what people are going to say to you.

02:04:33   So it's really important to just be able to manage that somehow.

02:04:38   And that's why I hand out Twitter blocks aggressively.

02:04:40   It's just to manage that incoming stream, just so that I'm not trying to block out all criticism.

02:04:45   I do want to hear valid criticism. I just want to try to filter out a lot of invalid criticism and a lot of unnecessary nastiness.

02:04:51   And if I don't filter all that out, I'm afraid I would just get tired of it and leave.

02:04:57   leave.

02:04:58   One of the reasons I'm lighter on the blocking is because it's like I will never unblock

02:05:01   a person.

02:05:02   I don't even know how to-- I guess you go to Twitter website, like an animal as they

02:05:05   say, and find them and like unblock them.

02:05:08   But you're never going to do that.

02:05:09   And like everyone has a bad day.

02:05:11   Everyone is cranky about something.

02:05:12   They didn't like something you say.

02:05:13   They'll say some mean thing.

02:05:14   I'm willing to give people, you know, the benefit of the doubt if they say some jerky

02:05:19   thing until it becomes like, "Oh, here's the person."

02:05:22   All they ever say is that jerky thing.

02:05:24   clearly not even a fan of the show or anything that I do, they're just here to harass me.

02:05:28   Then it just becomes harassment and then you pull out the block. I don't have people like

02:05:33   that, but for example, getting back to the sexism thing, many women online do have that.

02:05:39   Tons and tons of people who are just there to be evil harassers in dangerous kinds of

02:05:42   ways and I strongly encourage them to hand out the blocks like crazy in that instance.

02:05:47   All of us, I think, are lucky enough not to deal with that at all and I can't even imagine

02:05:50   what that would be like because we're whining about people saying that we don't have a good

02:05:54   podcast which is nothing compared to the crap they get but yeah there's different categories

02:05:59   and the category of negative feedback I get is of a kind where I do not find myself having

02:06:05   to hand out the blocks. Spammers on the other hand get the immediate block.

02:06:10   Well John you've also you've managed to develop your way of arguing and presenting points

02:06:17   so well and this is probably because you're so ancient compared to us.

02:06:21   (laughing)

02:06:22   - It's the power of Usenet.

02:06:24   If you wanna see me making terrible arguments,

02:06:26   go search the Usenet archives for,

02:06:28   burned in the crucible of Flame Wars on Usenet, yes.

02:06:32   - Now surrounded by tons of Google Ads.

02:06:35   But you've developed this for, what,

02:06:39   a decade longer than we have, or close to it?

02:06:41   You're a lot better at it.

02:06:44   You're like this large chunk of time ahead of us

02:06:48   in having all those rough edges worn down off of your argument style so that now you're

02:06:53   really good at it.

02:06:54   So I think you get a lot less of the crap than Casey and I do.

02:06:57   I don't think it's necessarily age, because you can find 50-year-olds who are just as

02:07:02   babyish as—I think it just comes from, you know, like, this—when I found the internet,

02:07:07   the thing I wanted to do with it was argue about computers with it, like so many other

02:07:11   people, and argue about computers I did.

02:07:14   And arguing about computers with smart people eventually teaches you what you're wrong about

02:07:21   and how to construct an argument and how to be able to—either it makes you flee or you

02:07:26   double down and become even a bigger jerk, or if this is really something you want to

02:07:29   pursue, which it was for me, I became better at it.

02:07:33   Like any kind of skill that you build up.

02:07:35   It's like if you start playing tennis and you keep getting your butt kicked and your

02:07:39   reaction is to just hit the ball as hard as you can into the air, that is not getting

02:07:43   better at it.

02:07:44   that is doubling down on your idiocy. Or you can say, "Why do I keep getting beat? What techniques

02:07:49   can I learn to make myself better? Let me practice." And different people have different reactions.

02:07:53   I think it's not so much the years of experience, although that helps, but it's like what you did

02:07:59   with those years. Because again, I know plenty of people who I'm using it in forums or whatever,

02:08:03   who are just as abrasive and terrible and illogical and irrational and emotional as they were 10,

02:08:07   15 years ago and have learned nothing. But there are lots of other people who left that environment

02:08:12   And there are other people who are slowly getting better and who eventually, because

02:08:16   if you pursue that as like, this is something I'm interested in, I'm interested in arguing.

02:08:20   Sounds crazy, but it's, you know, some people are into it.

02:08:22   I think to our audience, that does not sound crazy at all, especially coming from you,

02:08:27   that you would be interested in arguing.

02:08:28   Right.

02:08:29   And I think to some degree all of us are, but it's like, Marco, why do you bother putting

02:08:33   your opinions on blogs?

02:08:34   Like why do you, you know, like you want to say, here's what I have to say, what do you

02:08:38   have to say?

02:08:39   And you want to hear like good feedback from smart people and so you can go back and forth.

02:08:42   If you weren't interested in that, you wouldn't be putting your opinions out there.

02:08:47   You wouldn't crave that back and forth.

02:08:49   So, that's something you're doing with your life.

02:08:52   When I publish a blog post, the very first thing I do is basically spend the next 45

02:08:57   minutes monitoring Twitter and email and hoping that I get some feedback and reading it all

02:09:03   and possibly addressing it.

02:09:04   That's the very first thing I do.

02:09:06   If I couldn't do that, it would feel very lonely.

02:09:11   wouldn't give me as much of a return of satisfaction, which is probably saying a lot

02:09:17   about me and my egotism and our modern culture as a whole. But getting that feedback is of

02:09:25   utmost importance, and it would feel very strange now if I didn't get that kind of

02:09:28   feedback.

02:09:29   Yeah, you know, and a very close friend of the show, _DavidSmith, said in the chat a

02:09:34   moment ago, "I find it really important to have a group of trusted friends who can tell

02:09:37   honest criticism. Unsolicited feedback is where things get really rough. And I completely agree

02:09:42   with them. I think it's nice to have a little bit of unsolicited feedback as long as it's constructive.

02:09:46   Because sometimes, like I was saying earlier, you know, I might not think Marco's being an

02:09:51   asshole because I know Marco and I know that more often than not, he's not intending to be an asshole.

02:09:56   But maybe somebody who doesn't know Marco thinks he is being an asshole. And so it might be useful

02:10:01   for Marco to hear some random person say, "Hey, you know what? You really came off like an asshole on

02:10:05   on that. But generally speaking, I think it's extremely important, just like Dave said,

02:10:10   to have a group that can call you out and say, "You know what? You really need to work

02:10:15   on whatever this is." And it can be about what you're working on. It could be about

02:10:20   something called—just how you treat people could be about any number of things. But having

02:10:25   that, I think, is very important.

02:10:26   I can just hear all the handbrakes that are going to cover that section if it actually

02:10:30   ends up in the podcast.

02:10:31   Yeah, my bad.

02:10:32   I think this is better than the show.

02:10:34   uh... it's not definitely not a tight i guess i'm by the way speaking of things

02:10:38   that people get wrong known as call me and i were my friends calling me on

02:10:41   these things the the the term call me as they call me and divisive but not call

02:10:46   me as i believe when i petition merlin for

02:10:49   and are in style song parody for our style parity for our song

02:10:53   i erroneously uh... misspoke the name of the arianna album and i think i said

02:10:59   plural murmurs that's crazy talking it was bad as soon as i said just want

02:11:02   everyone to know I know what the title of the album is. It's singular.

02:11:05   This has been eating it. Speaking of things, they're eating away at you and it's like if

02:11:08   someone calls me on that, oh, this is the other one that happens constantly is like

02:11:12   my mispronunciation of nuclear. Like I mispronounce it all the time. I know it's wrong. I'm not

02:11:16   doing it on purpose. I'm not like, oh, I'm taking a stand. I'm going to say it the wrong

02:11:19   way. Nope. I totally want to say it the right way. Every time it just comes out nuclear

02:11:24   so many times. And as I said in the many tweets, I blame the '80s. Like I do not want to say

02:11:29   It just happens. I don't want it to happen. I know it's wrong. Thank you for all the feedback, people. I'm trying.

02:11:35   Well, so I didn't really intend for this to become group therapy, but I'm kind of glad it did. This was pretty good.

02:11:41   Yeah, it's like back to work.

02:11:43   Yeah, I was just thinking to myself, this feels a little back to work-

02:11:45   Next week, OCD.

02:11:47   And comics. Lots of comics.

02:11:49   Lots and lots and lots of comics. Oh, man.

02:11:55   I actually I would love for Merlin to address this kind of topic at some point

02:11:58   I mean, it doesn't really fit into his show. He has I think I think he's talked about this about

02:12:03   How to handle negative feedback and I think he talks a lot about like negative self-talk like you being your own worst enemy

02:12:09   Oh, yeah

02:12:10   Negatively about the bullet, but it's very it's a similar type of thing where sometimes the things you're saying to yourself

02:12:14   Are just mean and sometimes the things you're saying to yourself are like there's a there's a kernel of truth that you need to address

02:12:19   And like I feel like he has talked about this

02:12:22   I felt like we just kind of did a miniature middle of some weird back to the work thing.

02:12:28   Back to the work?

02:12:29   I'm supposed to correct you.

02:12:30   I did not mean to say "the" there.

02:12:31   As your friend.

02:12:32   As your friend.

02:12:33   This is one of the things, the problem with being on a podcast is you would think the

02:12:36   connection between your brain and your mouth is fairly solid.

02:12:40   And I listen to myself on these podcasts and I'm like, "What in the hell did you just

02:12:44   – like, I had no idea during the podcast that I said it.

02:12:47   Words come out that just should not be there."

02:12:50   It's called misspeaking.

02:12:51   And I am baffled as anyone else when I hear myself say it.

02:12:56   If you had told me what I had just said, I heard that, though.

02:12:58   But anyway, it's terrible.

02:13:00   I love how many people tweeted me over the last week thinking that when I said Xbone

02:13:05   repeatedly last week that that was serious.

02:13:10   How long have you been listening to me?

02:13:11   You don't get that I joke about stuff like that sometimes?

02:13:13   Come on.

02:13:14   I like the...

02:13:15   What I like about Xbone is that I don't think the gamer community and internet fan base

02:13:21   large has decided whether Xbone is derogatory or like a pet name like a

02:13:27   term of endearment. Or even just like like will that just become the way

02:13:30   everyone says it? So far I think it's both. Some people say it to try to be

02:13:35   like you know to put down the Xbox and I think a lot of fans say it as a term of

02:13:40   endearment and I just want to see how it comes out in the end. It's end up being

02:13:42   mostly a term I think it'll end up mostly being a term of endearment. It is

02:13:46   a lot easier and faster and and unambiguous to say that that does say

02:13:50   anything else. And less stupid than the third Xbox being the Xbox One. Right, I mean it's

02:13:55   a stupid... Microsoft gave it such a stupid real name that we have to come up with stupid

02:13:59   alternatives. Yeah, good old Sony. They put a number after it. They make the number bigger.

02:14:05   He wanted to do titles before I pass out. Yeah, let's wrap it up. Why are you always

02:14:11   so tired? Are you one of those jobs where they work you like a dog, Casey? Are you doing

02:14:14   hard manual labor, breaking rocks all day? No, no, no, no. You're in the same time zone

02:14:18   is us, right? Yes, yes. I'm just, I'm old. I go to bed early.

02:14:22   You're not old. You people with your children, "Oh, we can't

02:14:25   get on the mic until 9 o'clock." I'm usually crawling in bed at 10. I'm old.

02:14:30   Yeah, I think Casey should take over as the new old man, crawling into bed at 10.

02:14:34   Yeah. No, I'm not arguing. I didn't think it was ever really, I didn't think that was

02:14:37   ever up for grabs. Pennywise Pound Fool is just pretty good.

02:14:41   I think that's it. That's so good. That's such a, that's such a, oh, speaking of old

02:14:44   man, that's such an old man phrase, I'm gonna go out and play with my hoop and stick later.

02:14:48   But it has...

02:14:49   But it...

02:14:50   I can't even take these...

02:14:51   Is that ever a real thing? Like, do people actually do that?

02:14:57   The hoop and stick was a real thing, but Simpsons have done a lot. I was referencing the Simpsons

02:15:02   joke. They have, yeah, I think they had the first time I remember hoop and stick on Simpsons

02:15:07   was when Monty Burns was like a kid and he was playing with... Anyway, this is a really

02:15:11   old phrase.

02:15:12   Oh, I'm fine with that.

02:15:15   It's good because it works out because we, because not only I think, Jon, I think you

02:15:18   actually said that exact phrase during the Penny Arcade discussion, but you know, it's

02:15:22   so much about Penny Arcade, like it's so good.

02:15:26   Ah, look at that, I didn't even think of that.

02:15:28   There you go.

02:15:29   That's terrible.

02:15:30   Wow.

02:15:31   [Laughter]

02:15:31   [LAUGHTER]