141: State of the Hardware 2023


00:00:00   So every year towards the end of the year, we talk about our favorite apps and services that we use and state of the apps.

00:00:07   Well, today we're going to talk about the devices that we're using, the hardware that we're using in the very first state of the hardware.

00:00:14   State of the hardware, 2023.

00:00:18   Are you happy with 2023? I mean, I did wonder if you would petition for 2024.

00:00:21   Oh, god damn it, no, no. Yeah, wait a minute.

00:00:24   We can't do that. It's the middle of the... It's not even the middle of the year.

00:00:29   It should be state of the hardware 2024.

00:00:32   No, no, it really shouldn't be. Maybe in your mind you would like it to be, but like realistically it's 2023.

00:00:39   Because there are a bunch of devices that by 2024 we will have upgraded from that we're going to talk about today.

00:00:46   You don't know that, Mike. That's just wild speculation. You have no idea that that's true.

00:00:51   I'm suddenly having this feeling like, I was tricked. I was tricked with this title and I didn't even realize it.

00:00:57   The way that I kind of think of this is, we are professionals.

00:01:00   We are professional content creators, professional business people, professional consumers of content.

00:01:05   And with apps, we've made a bunch of decisions about the things that we use and the why we choose them or why we work with them.

00:01:12   And so I thought it would be nice to maybe move that over to hardware.

00:01:16   And there'll be some stuff that people know that we use or will have heard us talk about before.

00:01:20   But this, especially this first year, kind of gives the baseline.

00:01:23   And then as we go forward through future years, we could talk about how it's changing.

00:01:28   Similar to the idea of state of the apps, I've got a bunch of categories.

00:01:33   We have the everyday carry. We have work, office, entertainment, travel, and maybe a lightning round?

00:01:42   Yes, there may be a lightning round.

00:01:44   I also have a last minute addition to this category list, Mike, that you don't know about.

00:01:48   Although you will have an item for it, I think.

00:01:51   Okay.

00:01:51   It is dogs, dog gear.

00:01:54   I want to add to state of the hardware.

00:01:56   I have some dog recommendations.

00:01:58   I'm going to find somewhere else to put that in, you know, like, I don't know if I want to make a specific dog category.

00:02:05   Well, look, I'm just telling you, there's a dog category.

00:02:08   Surprise.

00:02:08   You're going to figure out where it goes.

00:02:10   Hey, here's the thing.

00:02:11   This is a collaborative process.

00:02:13   If you decide you want a dog category, then so be it.

00:02:17   There's a dog category.

00:02:17   Yeah, no, I did.

00:02:18   I already decided it.

00:02:19   Well, I mean, like it will be called dogs.

00:02:21   Yes.

00:02:22   You know, don't necessarily think I'm going to update the artwork for this one, but.

00:02:27   Now that you said that I'm going to have to get some custom dog cortex artwork made, of course.

00:02:32   Dog techs.

00:02:33   You know what?

00:02:34   I'm going to leave that one with you.

00:02:35   If you want to do that part, you could do that part.

00:02:39   Okay, I will.

00:02:40   So let's start with our everyday carry.

00:02:43   What goes in the pockets?

00:02:44   That's kind of what I was thinking about this, right?

00:02:46   What phone are you using right now?

00:02:48   The iPhone 14 Pro.

00:02:50   Not the max version.

00:02:52   I believe you've got the max version.

00:02:54   I have the max version.

00:02:55   I don't think we ever spoke about this.

00:02:57   This has been like one of the reasons I actually wanted to do this episode is that,

00:03:02   especially towards the end of the year where we might be changing out hardware,

00:03:06   our end of the year now is so kind of like focused on the show, the things that we do,

00:03:12   that we never really get to talk about these things anymore.

00:03:14   Like, I don't think we've had it.

00:03:16   We used to have an episode where we would talk about the new phones and watches every year,

00:03:20   and we haven't done that for years.

00:03:21   Yeah, for years.

00:03:23   Yeah, because by the time we would get around to it, it's just like,

00:03:26   there's no point doing an entire episode about this anymore.

00:03:29   So I thought, you know, this is one of the reasons I wanted to do this state of the hardware,

00:03:33   because we can talk about it for a couple of minutes,

00:03:35   along with all the other stuff that we're going to talk about.

00:03:37   So what made you decide the Pro rather than the Pro Max?

00:03:41   I can't remember if it was this year or last year.

00:03:46   You know, in life, sometimes you want to make decisions that cut down on your future decisions.

00:03:51   You want to decrease the number of decisions you make.

00:03:53   And I realized that I keep fluctuating back and forth between like big phone, best phone,

00:04:00   right, or like the small phone or the regular size phone.

00:04:03   And I just made a decision, like, I'm not going to make decisions about this anymore.

00:04:08   I'm just going to buy like the quote normal size phone.

00:04:12   I think every time I've bought the big one, it's like, there are things I really like,

00:04:16   but there are also frustrations.

00:04:17   And it's the same thing with the little phone of like, God, do I really like the little phone,

00:04:22   but there are also frustrations.

00:04:24   And so I decided, I'm not going to do this agony anymore every year.

00:04:28   Like, I'm just going to buy whatever the like normal size phone is and leave it at that.

00:04:34   So this was my like, no more decisions, no more anxiety.

00:04:39   This is just what I'm going to do.

00:04:40   You see, I made that decision too many years ago, and I chose most phone.

00:04:46   Right, most phone.

00:04:47   And this is where like, I wonder if this decision for you will pay off over the next few years,

00:04:53   because it seems very clear that to me and to many people, of course,

00:04:57   that Apple is going to adopt this like ultra model like Samsung have,

00:05:02   where the biggest phone will have the most stuff.

00:05:06   So like the rumors for this year's iPhone will be significant camera improvements,

00:05:11   just for the big one.

00:05:13   Yeah.

00:05:13   So I wonder if we'll see, you may level up to like,

00:05:17   I'm going to just do one decision, but maybe I'll go most as well.

00:05:21   Yeah, I don't think so.

00:05:23   It depends on the difference.

00:05:24   It might, you know, because we said this before, right?

00:05:26   Like when they put the largest sensor in, I think it was this one.

00:05:29   We're like, oh, it's going to be, it's fine.

00:05:32   There isn't really, I think a lot that's actually happened with it, like realistically.

00:05:37   I think if you're looking at very fine detail, like say for example,

00:05:40   you're taking photos of dogs, like, and you zoom in on them, then you can see the difference.

00:05:44   And in the times where I have shot raw, like it is great.

00:05:49   Yeah, the raw stuff is crazy.

00:05:50   Right, but you've got to do it.

00:05:52   And I do think that it's going to take a couple of years still of Apple having this sensor

00:05:56   to really unlock its full potential for them.

00:05:59   But this next one will probably have the periscope lens, right?

00:06:03   For the bigger zoom and all that kind of stuff.

00:06:05   So who knows if that will be of interest to you, but we'll see.

00:06:08   Yeah, I think this again is like the thing that I thought through is in the past,

00:06:13   I have done that exact thing of I always want the better camera,

00:06:17   better camera on big phone by big phone.

00:06:19   Yep.

00:06:20   But I have always slightly regretted it or not regretted it,

00:06:23   but just found the trade-offs frustrating.

00:06:26   And there are trade-offs, right?

00:06:27   The phones are big.

00:06:28   Now I like that, but I understand why somebody wouldn't,

00:06:32   especially if the benefit ends up being small, but the negatives are constant.

00:06:37   You maybe get sometimes a better camera improvement,

00:06:41   but if you don't like that the phone's bigger,

00:06:43   that is every minute of every day that that's going to be getting in your way.

00:06:46   Yes, that's exactly right.

00:06:47   I can't ever not feel it in my pocket problem.

00:06:52   It is there always going, "Hi, I'm a phone in your pocket.

00:06:57   You can feel this right now."

00:06:59   Whereas with the normal size phone, it's just under that threshold for me.

00:07:04   What case is your phone in?

00:07:06   Oh God!

00:07:06   I just thought of this.

00:07:07   I didn't put it in my list.

00:07:10   The reason is because I don't use a case on my phone.

00:07:12   Right, hold on.

00:07:13   I have to turn on the lights in my office so I can try to read with the case.

00:07:17   I did move to the MagSafe popsocket rather than just the popsocket stuck on the phone.

00:07:23   Oh, wait, wait.

00:07:24   So we moved to what?

00:07:25   There is a MagSafe popsocket.

00:07:27   So it's not a case, it's just connecting to the MagSafe magnet on the back.

00:07:31   That's what you're saying.

00:07:31   So it's the big oval, but it's got a mount for a popsocket on it.

00:07:36   And I did this because I'm trying to prepare for the time when I have to start using wireless charging.

00:07:44   And so then I'll be able to just take off the popsocket charge

00:07:48   and put the popsocket back on to carry on with my day.

00:07:51   Because that time is coming, especially like probably going to go USB-C this year.

00:07:55   And so the docks that I have would have to change.

00:07:58   And the docks that I have don't have a USB-C version.

00:08:01   They're just like Qi charging versions are all the modern ones now.

00:08:05   It's like people don't want you to be using docks with cables anymore.

00:08:09   You know, like you stick it on top of the cable.

00:08:11   I think my options there are going to shrink a lot.

00:08:14   So that's one thing.

00:08:15   But then also I think in a couple of years time, you know, it still feels feasible

00:08:20   that there will be an iPhone with no charging connector.

00:08:24   And so then like I can't be having a popsocket stuck to the back of the phone anymore

00:08:29   because I would get my phone would become single use.

00:08:31   - Right, right, right.

00:08:33   - So I moved to the MagSafe popsocket.

00:08:35   And I will say I have been pleasantly surprised.

00:08:38   I was very dubious of it as to if it would hold.

00:08:41   And I have never ever had it fall off ever.

00:08:44   - Okay, I'm impressed by that.

00:08:46   I would not have expected that.

00:08:47   - Yeah, the one I have is like, I think it's like the second generation.

00:08:51   Our mutual friend Alex told me that they bought the original one.

00:08:53   And it wasn't so secure.

00:08:55   But they obviously did something with the magnets for the kind of revised version.

00:09:00   And now it's like solid as a rock.

00:09:02   - Okay.

00:09:03   - But also easy to remove.

00:09:05   Like they've found this perfect sweet spot.

00:09:07   Like it's very easy to take off, but it also never comes off unexpectedly.

00:09:11   - Okay, so the case that I'm using, which I just love.

00:09:16   I've never been happier with the case.

00:09:18   It's the Peak Design Mobile Everyday Loop Case.

00:09:22   - Oh my word, that's a lot of branding in there.

00:09:25   - Well, yes, but it's like you're trying to describe every single part of it, right?

00:09:29   Peak Design is the company, mobile for your mobile phone, every day?

00:09:34   I don't know, every day?

00:09:35   - Every day is their branding, right?

00:09:37   They call their products every day.

00:09:39   It's like a whole line of products, I think, the everyday stuff.

00:09:42   - Oh, I just realized.

00:09:43   - The everyday backpack, right?

00:09:44   - Right, well, yes, I do have the everyday backpack, which will come up later.

00:09:47   - They also have Slimlink trademark technology in this one.

00:09:51   - Oh, okay, I don't see that as listed, but...

00:09:54   Okay, so there's two things about this that I love.

00:09:58   First, it's a pretty minimal case.

00:10:00   I guess that's why, because of that technology,

00:10:02   it feels like it barely adds anything to the phone.

00:10:04   It's still really protective.

00:10:05   I have really dropped this phone a few times,

00:10:08   and they've got just like a nice hard rim right around the cameras,

00:10:11   which has completely saved it from getting smashed.

00:10:13   Because I don't use the pop socket, they have a little loop on the back

00:10:18   that you can just put one finger through.

00:10:21   And I love it.

00:10:22   It's like just in the right position.

00:10:24   I feel like it's actually even in a better spot

00:10:26   than some of the pop socket was with just being a little lower.

00:10:29   It's like every time I pick up the phone,

00:10:31   I can just slide my ring finger through this little loop on the bottom

00:10:34   and have the phone really secure.

00:10:36   And then also for me, they have this mounting system.

00:10:40   - That's Slimlink.

00:10:41   - Oh, that's the Slimlink, okay.

00:10:44   This mounting system is...

00:10:46   It's mag safe, but it's also a physical connector.

00:10:49   And I have a mount for my bike that is the opposite end of that.

00:10:54   And it is like when a company designs something that works well,

00:10:58   it's so satisfying.

00:11:00   Like being able to just snap my phone onto this mount on the bike

00:11:05   and know that it is physically secured.

00:11:08   Like it is physically not coming off

00:11:10   unless I press the two little buttons on the back to pop it off

00:11:13   and then it comes off so easily.

00:11:14   Love it.

00:11:15   So like I just, I adore this case.

00:11:17   I think it's easily the best phone case I've ever used.

00:11:20   - Yeah, this was...

00:11:21   I remember they released their Kickstarter campaign for this.

00:11:25   - Yes, yes.

00:11:25   - Like six months before mag safe was introduced

00:11:28   and they ended up making it compatible with mag safe,

00:11:32   which I will say I was really nervous for them

00:11:37   because it felt like a very bold move at a risky time

00:11:41   and that ended up being the case.

00:11:43   But they found a way to kind of make it all work together

00:11:46   because you can use mag safe accessories of these cases too, right?

00:11:50   I think.

00:11:50   - Yeah, so that's also the thing that I really like about it is

00:11:54   I don't have any physical chargers anymore in my house.

00:11:56   I have all of these.

00:11:57   I didn't even bother looking up the brand

00:11:58   because every time I buy them off of Amazon,

00:12:00   it's like some weird different company is always making them.

00:12:03   - Yeah.

00:12:03   - But they're these like,

00:12:04   they're these little stands that are the three in one chargers.

00:12:07   So it has like mag safe for the phone.

00:12:09   It has a little charger on top for the watch

00:12:11   and then behind it, it has a little spot for your AirPods case.

00:12:14   I swear I've got like six of them in the house

00:12:17   and no two of them are made by the same company

00:12:19   because it's just like very strange.

00:12:21   - If you don't want your house to catch on fire,

00:12:24   a lot of these products are available from companies like Belkin and stuff.

00:12:27   Like I, again, I'm well known.

00:12:30   I am a wireless charging denier.

00:12:33   I don't like it.

00:12:35   It makes me nervous.

00:12:36   I just want to use a cable.

00:12:38   I don't like how hot everything gets.

00:12:41   Like I'm just not a fan of it, but...

00:12:42   - I think that's so funny because to me, wireless charging,

00:12:47   like the mag safe wireless charging thing,

00:12:49   once they got that system down,

00:12:50   easily one of my like just small delights in life is

00:12:55   I just put these chargers everywhere I'm likely to put down the phone

00:12:59   and it's functionally completely solved the problem

00:13:04   of thinking about my phone charge.

00:13:05   - I know I'm the weirdo here.

00:13:07   - Yeah.

00:13:07   - Because like everyone that I know loves it,

00:13:10   including people in my household.

00:13:11   - Unnamed other household.

00:13:14   - Every YouTuber loves it.

00:13:17   You know, every podcast, everyone loves wireless charging except for me.

00:13:21   And I don't know why I'm just like something about it.

00:13:25   It just doesn't feel right.

00:13:26   - Yeah, no, I get it.

00:13:27   - Charging via magnets.

00:13:28   It just seems strange.

00:13:29   - Mike, look, in the universe, we only have two things.

00:13:33   We have atoms and we have electromagnetism.

00:13:35   So if you think you're getting away from magnets

00:13:38   and any kind of charging that you're doing,

00:13:40   I have some bad news for you.

00:13:41   - I just, I don't like a charging method

00:13:44   where the method of charging generates extra heat.

00:13:47   That to me feels not good.

00:13:49   - I'll sit you down and tell you about electricity one day.

00:13:53   There's heat everywhere.

00:13:54   You just don't notice it.

00:13:55   - I don't want it.

00:13:56   - Yeah, so I love it.

00:13:57   That was one of the critical things for me on a case is like,

00:14:00   if a case doesn't work with MagSafe chargers, it's just dead.

00:14:04   I refuse to use it.

00:14:05   This is a case that's so good.

00:14:08   I would consider not upgrading the phone

00:14:11   until the next version of this case is out.

00:14:13   That's how much I love this case.

00:14:14   It's so good.

00:14:15   - The case design is one of these things,

00:14:17   which is so terrifying to me as a prospect.

00:14:20   Now we are in the world of making products, right?

00:14:23   The idea of having a product line

00:14:25   that is dependent on a thing,

00:14:27   but you have no idea what the specs are

00:14:32   until one day when then all of your customers

00:14:36   want the product next week.

00:14:38   - Yes, I know, I know.

00:14:40   - It feels like a horrible business to be in

00:14:43   because as well, then you end up getting

00:14:45   in the shady business of trying to get the measurements,

00:14:49   which is a thing that a lot of companies do,

00:14:52   which I totally understand why they do it.

00:14:54   But even then, you're still making a best bet.

00:14:57   If you've got some kind of measurements

00:15:00   from a factory in China somewhere telling you

00:15:02   these are the measurements of the new iPhone

00:15:04   and you make cases on that, go for it.

00:15:06   Companies do it.

00:15:07   Some companies get it from Apple, most of them don't.

00:15:09   - Right.

00:15:09   - But then you have produced however many thousands

00:15:12   of units of a product that you don't even really know

00:15:14   if it's gonna fit.

00:15:15   - Yeah, it's terrifying.

00:15:17   And also, especially if you are not getting

00:15:19   the measurements from Apple, you realize,

00:15:22   oh, those manufacturers may have incentives

00:15:25   to not tell you the correct size either,

00:15:28   which is a bit like, oh God.

00:15:29   - Yeah, yeah.

00:15:30   I can't imagine the pressure that Peak Design feel

00:15:34   in September every year.

00:15:35   - I will say right now, Cortex brand will never make

00:15:39   an iPhone case because I couldn't sleep at night.

00:15:43   It would just be too much stress.

00:15:45   - It's too much.

00:15:46   - Yeah.

00:15:46   - I mean, also I'm like a bit,

00:15:49   and I think you would agree with me here,

00:15:51   I'm a little bit hesitant to ever want to be beholden

00:15:54   to somebody else in that way.

00:15:57   That like, if you make phone cases,

00:15:59   you are always beholden to the decisions

00:16:02   of the phone manufacturer.

00:16:04   - Mm-hmm.

00:16:05   - What if one day you make cases for Samsung phones

00:16:08   and Samsung's like, gang, we did it.

00:16:10   We made a phone you don't need a case for.

00:16:12   - Oh yeah, I didn't even think about that.

00:16:14   - What are you gonna do?

00:16:15   Like if that's your whole business?

00:16:16   They're like, the glass is indestructible

00:16:18   and we've created this new like silicone back

00:16:22   and it's like feels fantastic and it's,

00:16:24   you never need a case.

00:16:25   Now there'll still be people that want to get cases

00:16:29   for like aesthetic reasons, but most people are buying cases

00:16:32   'cause they don't wanna break their phone.

00:16:33   - Yeah, yeah.

00:16:34   - All that kind of stuff is just like that

00:16:35   as a terrifying prospect to me of like being completely

00:16:39   beholden to the whims of another company

00:16:41   and whatever they wanna do.

00:16:42   But also I don't feel like we have any particular ideas

00:16:46   of phone cases, but what I do like about this Peak Design

00:16:49   line, this like Slim Link line or the mobile ecosystem,

00:16:52   there's a lot of branding now,

00:16:54   is they have all of these little accessories, right?

00:16:57   You can get different mounts for different modes

00:16:59   of transport.

00:17:00   You can get little mounts that you can just stick

00:17:02   on the wall, which I think is kind of cool.

00:17:04   So like you could put one next to your bathroom mirror

00:17:06   and watch YouTube videos where you brush your teeth

00:17:08   or whatever.

00:17:09   It is a cool system and it's like used in all of the places

00:17:14   you would use MagSafe and there are MagSafe mounts

00:17:16   for all of these things, but it has a locking system

00:17:20   and so it's not gonna come off.

00:17:22   So you can lock it to your bike and not worry

00:17:24   that if you go over a pothole that your phone's

00:17:26   gonna fly off.

00:17:27   - That's exactly right.

00:17:29   And I don't know if you have noticed,

00:17:30   but if you do any of the like food delivery stuff

00:17:33   in London, I have noticed that a crazy number

00:17:36   of the drivers are using this system.

00:17:38   - Oh really?

00:17:39   - They make a mount for motorcycles as well

00:17:41   and they make a mount for bikes and I just like,

00:17:44   I tune into it of like the number of people using

00:17:47   these delivery services.

00:17:48   - Oh, this bike mount is really, really well made.

00:17:51   Like I can just look at it and be like,

00:17:52   oh, that's well made.

00:17:53   That is a well made strong thing.

00:17:55   - Yeah, it's like, but these guys are taken,

00:17:57   their phone on and off the bike a hundred times a day

00:18:01   and like they cannot have it be insecure in the slightest.

00:18:05   And so it's like, I think they've kind of like cornered

00:18:08   the food delivery market phone case.

00:18:10   - But also the benefit too is like, you've got to be able

00:18:13   to take it off and on easily too, right?

00:18:15   It can't just be like you've clamped your phone

00:18:18   to the bike and that's the end of it.

00:18:19   Like you've also got to be able to pick it up and go.

00:18:23   And I'm sure it's helpful for you.

00:18:24   Like they make a bunch of like mounts for tripods

00:18:27   and all that kind of stuff.

00:18:28   So if you're ever shooting something on your phone,

00:18:29   it's also helpful for you as a content creator.

00:18:31   - Yeah, yeah, I got the little tripod one for travel stuff

00:18:34   just to have and it's really nicely built.

00:18:37   It's like a perfect little, oh, I can have this here.

00:18:39   Even kind of nice just for doing like FaceTime calls

00:18:42   while you're traveling to just set it up

00:18:44   and not have to use your computer.

00:18:45   - Do you see though why I could never use this?

00:18:47   Because if I got into this system,

00:18:50   I have to upgrade my phone as soon as possible for my job.

00:18:53   - Yeah.

00:18:54   - That like then I would like my life would be revolving

00:18:57   around this system I built and I have to wait for two,

00:19:00   I can't use it for two months of every year.

00:19:02   - Yeah, no, that would, it would not work for you.

00:19:05   But I think as is clear,

00:19:06   I cannot possibly recommend it highly enough.

00:19:08   - What Apple Watch do you wear?

00:19:10   Or what watch do you wear?

00:19:12   Please do not allow me to be presumptuous.

00:19:13   - Yeah, how dare you, Mike?

00:19:16   How dare you assume that I'm wearing an Apple Watch?

00:19:18   So I'm wearing an Apple Watch.

00:19:19   (laughing)

00:19:23   So I actually, I don't remember if I told you this before,

00:19:26   but I don't actually know which Apple Watch I'm using

00:19:30   because when I was in Hawaii earlier this year,

00:19:34   we ended up setting up a couple of family members

00:19:38   with Apple Watches and trying to get them

00:19:41   to where we were in Hawaii on time,

00:19:44   wasn't really gonna work.

00:19:45   And so my uncle-in-law took the watch right off my wrist

00:19:50   and I was very happy to give it to him.

00:19:52   And I set him up with what was my Series 8, I guess,

00:19:56   would have been at the time a watch.

00:19:57   - I don't think it would have been an 8.

00:19:59   - Or maybe it was a 7, whatever it was.

00:19:59   - I think it was probably a 7.

00:20:01   - Whatever it was at the time.

00:20:02   And so then I came home and I just set up

00:20:05   one of my older Apple Watches, I guess the 6?

00:20:08   I'm not 100% sure.

00:20:09   And I was waiting for like the next cycle

00:20:11   to come around for the watch.

00:20:13   I was extremely tempted by the Ultra

00:20:16   when they released that.

00:20:18   I was like, "Ooh, can I buy that Ultra?"

00:20:22   But I just couldn't stand the silver color at all.

00:20:24   So I passed on that.

00:20:25   So I'm just waiting for the next cycle.

00:20:28   But what I really want is I want like a black Ultra for sure.

00:20:32   That's what I'm looking for.

00:20:32   - I'm using an Apple Watch Series 7.

00:20:34   I'm using the gold one, which I love,

00:20:38   the gold stainless steel one.

00:20:39   The Series 8 wasn't enough of an upgrade for me.

00:20:42   I feel like two years is a pretty good upgrade cycle

00:20:46   even for me as a person who talks about

00:20:48   this stuff professionally.

00:20:50   I don't think that they really,

00:20:52   and I understand they don't add enough hardware stuff

00:20:54   every year and it tends to be the last few years

00:20:56   they've added sensors, like health sensors,

00:20:59   where the impact can be smaller.

00:21:02   - Yeah, of course.

00:21:02   - The sensors in the Series 8 weren't for me anyway, right?

00:21:05   They were applicable for like ovulation tracking and stuff.

00:21:08   So that wasn't so helpful for me.

00:21:10   And the Series 6, whenever they added

00:21:14   the blood oxygen sensor, the way that they pitched that

00:21:17   was so weak at the time that there really hasn't been

00:21:21   anything super useful from the health perspective.

00:21:23   But this is a knockout success for me since the ECG.

00:21:27   But there is potential of,

00:21:29   they're talking of in the next few years,

00:21:30   they might have blood glucose monitors in the watches,

00:21:32   which would just be like a wild thing to have.

00:21:35   - Oh, God.

00:21:36   If they ever crack that, I feel like that is gonna be

00:21:39   like Apple stock to the moon.

00:21:40   - It's gonna be incredible.

00:21:41   - If they can ever, ever nail that.

00:21:43   - I think they'll do it.

00:21:44   I genuinely think they'll do it

00:21:45   'cause they've been working on it for so long.

00:21:47   There was a report recently that they'd made a breakthrough.

00:21:51   Like they're getting closer and it's non-invasive too, right?

00:21:54   Like there's nothing pricking you in the skin.

00:21:55   So for me, it's every two years.

00:21:59   And when the Ultra came out,

00:22:00   I wasn't sure if that was the watch for me.

00:22:03   Like it seemed super large, you know,

00:22:05   like from the imagery and stuff.

00:22:06   And I decided I just wasn't gonna look at one.

00:22:08   Like just don't go to the store, don't look at it.

00:22:10   (laughing)

00:22:11   Don't worry about it.

00:22:12   - Ah, the classic, if you don't want a dog,

00:22:15   don't visit the pound, right?

00:22:16   - Yep, I avoided Apple stores for months.

00:22:19   And then when I was in LA in January,

00:22:22   we was hanging out with our friend,

00:22:23   David Sparks from MacPow users.

00:22:25   And he just said, "Give me a wrist."

00:22:27   And he just put his watch on my wrist.

00:22:29   (laughing)

00:22:30   And then I knew I wanted an Apple Watch Ultra.

00:22:33   - Yeah.

00:22:33   - But I just decided that I would wait.

00:22:36   'Cause I would also like it

00:22:38   if maybe they had some color options.

00:22:40   I like the silver, but I would like to maybe make a choice

00:22:44   rather than it being the only one.

00:22:46   I like the design of the Apple Watch Ultra.

00:22:48   That's the biggest thing for me.

00:22:50   Because my main problem with the Apple Watch

00:22:52   is the Apple Watch has looked essentially the same forever.

00:22:56   - It's interesting you mentioned that

00:22:57   because I mean, for me with the Ultra,

00:22:59   the thing would be, I just want a bigger screen.

00:23:01   Like that's my number one feature request.

00:23:03   But even for me, a dramatically unfashioned sensitive person

00:23:09   who likes things consistent and the same in my life,

00:23:13   I have felt like the Apple Watch has gone over

00:23:16   some kind of threshold where I could die of boredom looking at it.

00:23:20   - Yes.

00:23:20   - And like, I am so unsensitive to this.

00:23:23   But I think like, if I am feeling this way,

00:23:26   there has to be just monstrous pent-up demand

00:23:30   for any kind of design change.

00:23:32   - Which I think is probably why the Ultra did quite well.

00:23:34   I think it's done quite well.

00:23:35   I see them quite a lot.

00:23:37   And I think it's because it has a new design.

00:23:39   I mean, you see this all the time.

00:23:40   Every time Apple releases an iPhone with a big new design,

00:23:42   it always sells the best, right?

00:23:44   Just makes sense.

00:23:44   People want new.

00:23:45   And like, it's why I wear the gold Apple Watch,

00:23:49   because I just think it looks different.

00:23:51   Like it's just, at least it's got something to it.

00:23:54   But I'm really fed up of the like rounded corner design.

00:23:58   The Ultra is interesting to me because it's like boxy.

00:24:01   It's got something that it looks visibly different.

00:24:04   So that's exciting to me.

00:24:05   I'm going to wait for the next upgrade cycle.

00:24:07   I'm hoping that they will revise it in some way this year.

00:24:10   They probably will because it was such a hit maybe.

00:24:12   So they'll do another one.

00:24:13   And I would love it if they had some different colors.

00:24:16   The rumors are that the next iPhone will have a titanium frame,

00:24:20   so they will be coloring that.

00:24:22   So my hope is there will be some color options for the Ultra too.

00:24:25   Ooh, that'd be nice.

00:24:26   What wallet do you use?

00:24:28   Logic would dictate that you're using the Peak Design wallet or whatever.

00:24:32   Well, so no, I'm using something else that has just as long of a name.

00:24:38   The Kaks Gek pop-up card holder wallet with money clip.

00:24:44   RFID blocking, six card capacity.

00:24:47   So I was looking for a wallet.

00:24:53   Does this have an AirTag holder?

00:24:55   So this is it, right?

00:24:56   Okay, so AirTags are one of these things that have just-

00:25:01   As soon as I had a few of them, it's like, I want an AirTag

00:25:05   in everything important that I can own, that I can lose.

00:25:09   If we were gonna pick a winner for State of the Hardware,

00:25:12   you know, like how you have your unofficial app pick in State of the App?

00:25:17   I don't do that.

00:25:17   Which you don't do, you definitely don't do.

00:25:19   I think it would be fair to say that just like,

00:25:21   if you take one thing away from this conversation today,

00:25:24   it's like AirTags are awesome.

00:25:25   If you have an iPhone, you should have AirTags on your luggage, on your keys.

00:25:30   Everything.

00:25:31   They're excellent.

00:25:31   It's an excellent product.

00:25:33   The only thing that kind of kills me about them is,

00:25:35   it sounds strange for how small they are,

00:25:38   they are a little bulky and I think that the shape is awkward.

00:25:42   I would just want them to even-

00:25:44   Just put in like the tiniest hole so that you don't have to have a case

00:25:49   that's always holding the things, but even that aside, they're amazing.

00:25:53   Here's what I'll say on the size and the design.

00:25:56   I agree with you, they're a little big,

00:25:57   but I would take that and have replaceable batteries

00:26:03   rather than giving Apple like £29 every time the battery runs out.

00:26:08   Which, when they were in design, it's like people were like,

00:26:11   "This is going to be the way that it is, right?

00:26:13   They're going to have like a battery life and then you'll have to buy a new one."

00:26:16   But like, I just replaced the batteries on all of mine

00:26:19   and I bought like 20 batteries for £5.

00:26:21   So it's like, I wish that they were a bit smaller,

00:26:26   but I will take that because I can replace the battery in them.

00:26:29   Yeah, I think it's an interesting trade-off.

00:26:32   Ideally, I'd love it like a wireless charging, right?

00:26:34   Like, use the Apple Watch charger for something else, right?

00:26:38   Like, can you have a tiny little wireless charging thing in there?

00:26:41   Then it would still need to be as physically large as the charger would allow.

00:26:45   But anyway.

00:26:46   To be clear, this is the most minor of complaints

00:26:49   because the quality of life improvement for putting air tags on as many things as you can

00:26:57   is insane.

00:26:58   It's like, just completely changes the way I interact with objects.

00:27:02   And once I started down this path, I was like,

00:27:04   "One of the very high things for me to have an air tag on is my wallet."

00:27:11   And I ordered like every wallet on Amazon that had any kind of air tag holder.

00:27:17   And this for me was the clearest winner by a huge margin.

00:27:23   I love this little wallet.

00:27:24   Like, I'm pretty minimal with my wallet.

00:27:25   I don't have very many cards.

00:27:28   This is just the right size for holding a few cards and holding a few bills.

00:27:33   And then you're all set.

00:27:34   But somehow the engineering of the way they make the air tag fit into the wallet,

00:27:42   it is the most minimal an air tag can possibly feel on a wallet.

00:27:46   They put it in backwards so it's the metal side out,

00:27:50   and they carved out a little space in the physical wall of the wallet to take most of the bulk.

00:27:55   It's fantastic.

00:27:56   I love this wallet so much.

00:27:58   It's great.

00:27:59   I also just love kind of like the sturdiness of it.

00:28:01   It just feels good as an object to hold.

00:28:04   So highly recommended.

00:28:06   I want to make a recommendation.

00:28:07   Now this isn't for a wallet,

00:28:09   but this is for something where if you don't want an air tag in your wallet.

00:28:13   I have not used this product, but the theory of it is sound.

00:28:17   It's called the Chipolo card.

00:28:20   So this is effectively a card size, like a credit card size,

00:28:25   probably like the thickness of two credit cards, but the shape of a credit card.

00:28:28   Tracking device that works with the Find My network.

00:28:33   So Apple also made the ability for the Find My tracking to be available to third parties.

00:28:41   And Chipolo is a company that works with Apple.

00:28:45   And this card will do most of what you need, but the basic thing is like

00:28:50   can connect to iPhones for Bluetooth tracking, right?

00:28:55   Like that's the whole thing.

00:28:56   Okay, so it's a pseudo credit card.

00:28:58   That is the Find My object.

00:29:00   Oh, interesting.

00:29:01   Yeah.

00:29:01   Just in case you don't want to have a wallet which has an air tag stuck to the side of it.

00:29:05   Like, and I don't like the visual of that.

00:29:07   Neither would I like that in my back pocket, right?

00:29:09   Like, I just think that would be uncomfortable.

00:29:11   Oh yeah.

00:29:11   If you put the wallet in your back pocket, this is not going to work.

00:29:14   Yeah, that makes sense.

00:29:16   But this might work, right?

00:29:17   And like Chipolo is also one of the companies that makes like air tag competitors.

00:29:21   And theirs is about the same price, but is a different physical shape.

00:29:25   And they don't have the exact same feature set, but it might be the features that you want.

00:29:29   And I think the main one, like, you know, they can have them make sounds and stuff like that.

00:29:34   But the main thing for me about the Find My stuff is that it connects to the Find My network,

00:29:40   which is basically any iPhone in the world.

00:29:43   Yes.

00:29:43   It can help you locate your thing.

00:29:45   And that's what these products can do too.

00:29:47   Okay. But for me also, the critical thing is, does it do the thing where your phone can point

00:29:53   in the direction of the object?

00:29:54   No.

00:29:55   Okay. Well then that's like a deal breaker for me.

00:29:57   I understand that, right?

00:29:58   It doesn't have the precision finding.

00:30:00   And that's like a thing that air tags have.

00:30:02   And if you have a modern iPhone can do that part.

00:30:06   This part, I don't believe they have opened up to other people.

00:30:09   But this is like maybe as good as you can get.

00:30:13   A Bluetooth tracker is something that has the Find My network in it.

00:30:17   And also Google's doing it now.

00:30:18   And actually as we're recording this, like Google and Apple are working together on some

00:30:22   of this stuff now too.

00:30:23   So it might get a bit better.

00:30:24   Interesting. Okay.

00:30:26   I need the, it points to where your thing is.

00:30:29   Like that is surprisingly to me, the feature that really makes these trackers different.

00:30:35   Like I've used a lot of trackers over the years and I've always found them useful.

00:30:39   But the ability to point and be like, it's six feet to your left is killer.

00:30:46   Like it makes such a difference.

00:30:48   I love that they put that into the AirPods Pro 2 as well.

00:30:51   The U1 finding.

00:30:52   Like that's, I've never used that precision finding for AirTag before, but I've used it

00:30:58   a couple of times for my AirPods.

00:30:59   Yeah.

00:31:00   The AirPods is another one of my everyday carry things.

00:31:02   And the moment they had the, it's part of Find My and you can point to it as like sold.

00:31:06   I need no other features except from that.

00:31:08   Like immediate purchase.

00:31:10   Although for me, the big thing is just how much better the noise canceling and transparency

00:31:14   became and, but my biggest thing is the volume adjustment.

00:31:17   I thought I wouldn't like that, but the ability to adjust volume with the AirPods Pro 2.

00:31:21   Fantastic.

00:31:22   Yeah.

00:31:23   I use it all the time.

00:31:24   Really good.

00:31:24   My wallet is the Bellroy card sleeve.

00:31:28   Oh, right.

00:31:30   Classic.

00:31:30   Is this, yeah, this is a classic.

00:31:32   I think this is the one I used to use or something similar to it.

00:31:35   I think a lot of people have had this product across their desk at some point.

00:31:39   Like it's just simple.

00:31:40   This is a good one.

00:31:41   Yeah.

00:31:42   I don't carry cash.

00:31:43   You can put a little cash in there, but I don't really like cash in general.

00:31:46   This is just like put a couple of cards in the middle and a couple of cards on the outside.

00:31:52   And so like for me, it's like, I'll put my credit card and like two debit cards in the inside.

00:31:57   My driving license on the outside.

00:32:00   And if I have like a hotel room key or something, it'll go on the other side.

00:32:03   Like nice and simple, very slim for me.

00:32:06   I do, you know, I, I know you shouldn't, but I put my wallet in my back pocket.

00:32:10   So I like it to be as slim as possible.

00:32:12   And this for me is something which is super slim, but also stylish.

00:32:15   It has that system where to get to the cards on the inside, you pull this little tab.

00:32:20   Yes.

00:32:20   And it just pops the cards out.

00:32:21   That was always nice.

00:32:22   Yeah.

00:32:22   Yeah.

00:32:23   Very simple.

00:32:24   And I've always really liked this.

00:32:26   I've I'm onto like my third of these.

00:32:29   One I lost and one just got worn down.

00:32:33   And so like, this is my wallet.

00:32:34   I will buy this wallet for as long as Bellroy make it.

00:32:37   Yeah.

00:32:37   And when I, when I had that one, I had the, it was like the brown leather one, I think.

00:32:41   That's what I have.

00:32:42   And I also really liked the way it looked as it aged.

00:32:45   Yeah.

00:32:45   Like some, like some, some materials just look nice as they pick up little scuffs.

00:32:49   And I thought like, Ooh, this, this wallet looks fantastic.

00:32:52   The longer I have it.

00:32:53   It also gets stretched a little bit in the right way, you know, like stretches to conform

00:32:57   to what you have in there.

00:32:58   And yeah, I'm a, I'm a big fan of this product.

00:33:00   For anyone who's listening to this right now, you're probably picky about products.

00:33:04   And one of the, I think one of the things that you realize is that a big part of trying

00:33:13   to find products you like is really about trying to find companies that you like because

00:33:19   they have designers that are like matching whatever it is you're looking for in stuff.

00:33:24   And I feel like, Ooh, Peak Design is one of those companies for me.

00:33:27   Like they have a lot of stuff that I like and use.

00:33:29   And Bellroy was another one of these companies of like, when I found it, like, Oh, great.

00:33:33   Like you make a bunch of stuff that's like hitting my needs of what I'm looking for.

00:33:38   So yeah, it's, it's, uh, I feel like product recommendations are often implicitly recommendations

00:33:44   of check out the other things that this company makes.

00:33:48   If you like this one thing in, in a way that I think I was less aware of this, just like

00:33:53   when you're looking for stuff on Amazon, it's like, yeah, but you're also trying to find

00:33:57   companies with designers that make things that you like.

00:34:00   Yeah. Spoiler alert, I'm going to mention Bellroy about four more times.

00:34:04   Okay. Well, there we go.

00:34:06   And just to round out like AirTags, I have an AirTag on my keys and I, I actually really

00:34:13   like Apple's AirTag, their leather AirTag key ring.

00:34:16   I think, I think it's really nice.

00:34:18   And I think with a engraved, you know, get like the engraving on AirTags.

00:34:22   Like I have an AirTag engraved with my initials and then in the key ring, I think it makes

00:34:28   it look just like a nice key ring, like, so could I have AirTag on the keys?

00:34:33   We do the same thing in the house of like both my wife and I, we just like picked an

00:34:36   emoji and it's like, this is the emoji for all of your things.

00:34:39   This is the emoji for all of my things.

00:34:40   And again, that's a thing where when Apple first rolled out that engraving, I kind of

00:34:45   thought it was like an upsell gimmick and it completely changed my mind on it.

00:34:49   It was like, no, this is very important.

00:34:51   Like, and we now do that emoji engraving on basically all of the stuff like Apple pencils

00:34:56   too, because some unnamed person in the house is constantly losing her pencils and trying

00:35:03   to take mine.

00:35:04   And so we, we have a record of like officially, but who lost their pencil and who kept their

00:35:10   pencil with the little emojis on it?

00:35:12   I wish they would do a more emoji, that every emoji should be available in my opinion.

00:35:17   Oh, are they not?

00:35:17   Is it just a limited selection?

00:35:18   I didn't realize that.

00:35:19   Limited set of emoji and it is actually free.

00:35:22   Oh, is it?

00:35:23   I thought it wasn't.

00:35:23   Oh, okay.

00:35:24   Huh.

00:35:25   Am I crazy?

00:35:25   Did it used to be an upsell?

00:35:27   I don't remember.

00:35:27   I mean, what it does do is, you know, if you're buying something when it's like just released,

00:35:32   it will take longer to come through.

00:35:34   Cause it comes from a different place.

00:35:35   Okay.

00:35:36   Well, my apologies, Apple.

00:35:37   I take it back.

00:35:38   You're not trying to upsell.

00:35:39   You don't need to apologize to Apple.

00:35:40   It's fine.

00:35:40   They're going to be okay.

00:35:41   I was really going to hurt sales there with people to upsell.

00:35:45   It's like, everyone's like, you know, so many people just put air tags in their cart and

00:35:49   then remove them.

00:35:49   Anything else in EDC?

00:35:53   Oh, you know what?

00:35:54   Hold on a second.

00:35:55   Okay.

00:35:55   I've got something, I've got something else that's like EDC adjacent.

00:35:59   Let me see if I can just find it.

00:36:00   Hold on a second.

00:36:01   All right.

00:36:01   The product name isn't written on here, but it doesn't matter because it's the concept

00:36:06   of the thing.

00:36:07   Right?

00:36:08   So I was trying to think about like everyday carry stuff.

00:36:10   Like we've covered the everyday carry stuff because I try to go real light.

00:36:14   But there is sort of another everyday carry item, which is my belt.

00:36:19   And at some point I discovered that they make belts that don't have notches.

00:36:25   They have a ratchet mechanism.

00:36:27   So I'm going to do this in front of the microphone.

00:36:28   Okay.

00:36:31   So it's a belt that has like little notches on the inside of the belt.

00:36:36   And then the buckle is like a one-way ratchet to attach to those.

00:36:43   Love it.

00:36:44   It's so much nicer than a traditional belt because you can always make it fit

00:36:49   exactly right.

00:36:51   And I feel like this does count as an everyday carry item because I have it on me every day

00:36:56   as the final thing.

00:36:58   This is interesting.

00:36:59   I'm on Amazon right now and like they make this kind of belt that look like regular belts.

00:37:05   Yeah.

00:37:05   So no one would ever know that it's not a regular belt.

00:37:08   Yes.

00:37:08   Here we go.

00:37:09   Okay.

00:37:09   I found the one that I really like is called Flintronic.

00:37:14   Oh, I see it here.

00:37:15   Yeah.

00:37:16   So that's the one that I've got and you can get it in like any different color.

00:37:19   Yeah.

00:37:19   With different belt buckle styles.

00:37:21   No one would ever know.

00:37:22   Like it's not a weird looking belt.

00:37:24   I think when I just describe it, people kind of think it's the Velcro shoes of belts.

00:37:29   You know, I was thinking it's like putting laces on Velcro shoes.

00:37:33   Yeah.

00:37:36   So I really like it.

00:37:37   It's just a small increase in comfort for, oh, your belt always fits exactly right every day.

00:37:44   So I'm going to, I'm going to have that as my last everyday carry recommendation.

00:37:49   This episode of Cortex is brought to you by our friends at Squarespace, the all-in-one platform

00:37:54   for letting you build your brand and grow your business online.

00:37:57   When you set up a Squarespace website, you are going to stand out from the crowd.

00:38:02   It is going to be beautiful.

00:38:04   One of the professionally designed best in class website templates.

00:38:08   You will be able to engage directly with your audience through Squarespace email campaigns,

00:38:13   and you can sell anything, your products, services, even the content that you create

00:38:18   with a Squarespace store.

00:38:20   Squarespace has got you covered.

00:38:22   Let me dig in to some of those things.

00:38:24   Let's talk about those templates.

00:38:25   When you go to Squarespace and get started, it is as easy as just browsing their categories

00:38:30   to find the type of website that you want to make.

00:38:32   And they have templates that are beautifully designed of the page structure there to be

00:38:37   the perfect starting place for you.

00:38:39   But everything is super customizable in just a few clicks.

00:38:42   You can change the layout, the fonts, the colors to really make it feel like yours.

00:38:48   I mentioned Squarespace email campaigns.

00:38:50   You can encourage your visitors to sign up as email subscribers and start them on the

00:38:54   journey to becoming loyal customers.

00:38:56   Again, you choose one of the beautiful templates, you customize it the way that you want.

00:39:00   Plus, every email that you send out has built in analytics to measure the impact of every

00:39:06   send.

00:39:07   What about those online stores?

00:39:08   Whether you sell physical or digital goods, Squarespace has all of the tools and integrations

00:39:13   that you need to start selling online and then to help you with all of the insights you're

00:39:17   going to need to grow your business so you can see what your most popular products are,

00:39:22   which channels that are most effective for you and you can turn that into a marketing

00:39:25   plan.

00:39:26   I have been using Squarespace for nearly 15 years, I think, and I've built so many websites

00:39:32   of them because when I have something I want to put online, it's the first place I go because

00:39:35   what I want to do is get my ideas out into the world and they make it so incredibly simple

00:39:40   to do so.

00:39:41   Go to squarespace.com/cortex and you can sign up for a free trial with no credit card required.

00:39:47   When you're ready to launch, use the offer code "CORTEX" to save 10% off your first

00:39:52   purchase of a website or domain.

00:39:54   That is squarespace.com/cortex.

00:39:56   Then when you sign up, use the offer code "CORTEX" to get 10% off your first purchase

00:40:01   and show your support for the show.

00:40:02   Our thanks to Squarespace for their support of this show and all of Relay FM.

00:40:06   Alright, let's move into our work devices.

00:40:09   Okay, work stuff.

00:40:11   So we should start with computers.

00:40:12   Yes.

00:40:13   I'm assuming like me, you have what you would consider like a desktop and a laptop.

00:40:20   Don't make assumptions about me, Mike.

00:40:22   Tell me what you have then.

00:40:23   So I have a desktop and I have a laptop.

00:40:25   Okay, that makes sense.

00:40:26   Yeah, yeah.

00:40:26   Well, okay.

00:40:27   So look, just like with the phones, I also made the decision a little while ago of like,

00:40:34   I'm only buying laptops from here on out.

00:40:37   So I am talking to you on a desktop, but this is like a legacy desktop, right?

00:40:42   This is my "writing computer" iMac Pro, which is the last desktop computer I have

00:40:50   or ever will purchase.

00:40:51   And it is now my last Intel computer as well, which is like increasingly annoying every

00:40:56   day.

00:40:57   But I just made the decision of like, I'm just getting laptops from here on out.

00:41:00   Apple has finally solved the external display annoyances, which were always a hesitation

00:41:05   for years, like they've fixed that.

00:41:07   What a funny coincidence that they did that after they started making displays.

00:41:11   I'm sure that's completely unrelated, but yeah, so I'm just sticking with laptops

00:41:15   from here on out because I like the modularity of being able to like swap them around or

00:41:19   do different things with them.

00:41:20   Yeah.

00:41:20   Are you still working on that gold iMac that you got or like what's your setup?

00:41:24   So the gold iMac is sitting in a box and that is going to go home at some point.

00:41:31   I'm going to make that a home computer for me.

00:41:33   My quote unquote desktop is a MacBook Pro.

00:41:36   Okay.

00:41:38   So I have a 14 inch M1 Max MacBook Pro that is in a docked position.

00:41:43   It's in one of those 12 South Book Art stands.

00:41:46   I've got the same one.

00:41:48   Yep.

00:41:48   That's great.

00:41:49   It's attached to an OWC Thunderbolt dock, which I have just for all of my various IO

00:41:55   for all of my audio gear and stuff.

00:41:57   And then two monitors that I have.

00:42:00   So I have a Dell monitor and an LG monitor.

00:42:03   These were both monitors that I had while I was waiting for Apple to produce the studio

00:42:08   display.

00:42:09   And so one day I will replace these monitors, but now I'm kind of waiting to see if there's

00:42:14   a new monitor from Apple.

00:42:16   I would like a pro monitor.

00:42:20   Like I would like a monitor that has promotion.

00:42:23   I would like a monitor that's maybe mini mini led and I think they will make it.

00:42:27   And so I'm probably just going to wait until they make something, which is not the pro

00:42:30   display XDR.

00:42:31   Oh, okay.

00:42:32   So you're looking for a monitor that sits in between studio display pro or something,

00:42:36   which I'm very convinced they will make, but it might just be a case of me waiting.

00:42:40   But like these two are good for me.

00:42:41   And I moved to the two display lifestyle at one point.

00:42:44   It was like an experiment and for my recording machine, which is what I consider to be my

00:42:48   desktop computer.

00:42:49   So I record and edit my podcasts on.

00:42:52   I have one monitor in landscape and one monitor in portrait and the portrait monitor always

00:42:58   has my recording app and my video or audio calling app on it.

00:43:04   Right.

00:43:04   So I can just look at them and always see that the counters are running and all that

00:43:08   kind of stuff.

00:43:09   So, and then that's just over there and I can't do anything to it.

00:43:12   And then everything else that I'm doing will be on the main display.

00:43:15   And so I'm, I'm happy with that set up.

00:43:17   And whenever I do change, I would probably always keep a second monitor around.

00:43:23   But that 14 inch MacBook pro was my laptop until Apple released the 13 inch M2 MacBook

00:43:31   Air, which is my laptop and is my favorite Mac ever made.

00:43:36   It is the most perfect blend of power and portability that I've ever experienced.

00:43:42   And like, I was very happy with my Mac Pro and I saw the MacBook Air, like Apple sent

00:43:47   me one for review and I was like, well, I put this in my backpack and I don't even know

00:43:51   it's in there.

00:43:52   It's like perfect.

00:43:53   Cause I do take a laptop home and to the studio every day.

00:43:57   Like I do that.

00:43:57   And the MacBook Air is usually docked on the second desk that I use, which is when I'm

00:44:03   not recording or editing, I don't sit at the desk that I'm on.

00:44:06   It's like surrounded by kind of like you read like a lot of audio stuff.

00:44:10   Like I have curtains, acoustic curtains, and I don't like, I feel like I'm shut in this

00:44:14   little cave rather than out in the studio.

00:44:17   So I sit at a different desk.

00:44:18   You've got a cozy recording space.

00:44:20   Exactly, which is best for audio, but it's not necessarily conducive to a comfortable

00:44:25   all day working environment when I'm like prepping for shows, doing emails, doing Quotx

00:44:30   brand work and stuff like that.

00:44:31   And I have a bigger desk for that.

00:44:32   That MacBook Air when I'm at that desk is plugged into a Apple studio display and I'm

00:44:39   very happy with that.

00:44:40   So that's kind of like my lineup.

00:44:42   And then, you know, that laptop will go with me when I'm at home, any trip that I take,

00:44:47   I will just take the MacBook Air and it's perfectly suited for anything I throw at it.

00:44:51   Yeah, I have a confession to make, which is that you showed me that MacBook Air.

00:44:57   It was the first time I had ever seen one and I was sold on it immediately.

00:45:03   I knew you were going to buy one when I saw the way you turned it over in your hands.

00:45:07   It's just, uh, it's like, man, sometimes they make just a perfect balance of things.

00:45:13   And that was, that was it.

00:45:15   I was so impressed with that computer just in person.

00:45:18   And I did happen to have this place in my life where I did kind of need a new computer

00:45:24   because in my basement writing area, I had a computer.

00:45:29   Okay.

00:45:31   I don't even know how this computer, uh, this laptop had stuck with me all these years.

00:45:35   I was like, Oh, I need, I am.

00:45:36   I want to set up my basement office.

00:45:38   I need to find a spare laptop and I have like some ones that are just broken.

00:45:42   Like they literally don't turn on, but the only laptop I had that still worked was so

00:45:49   old, it had the UK style keyboard on it, which meant, Oh, this was around at the point when

00:45:56   I was still transitioning out of like working as a teacher because I had to use the UK keyboards

00:46:02   and I like readjusted myself to just use them everywhere.

00:46:05   So it's like, I don't even know how old that computer was, but I was like, okay, into the

00:46:09   basement you go, cause I just need you as a writing computer down there, but it was fine.

00:46:15   But even for the task of just typing in a text file while running an external display, that

00:46:20   computer was having some problems.

00:46:22   And the moment I saw that MacBook Air, I think my very first question to you was about like,

00:46:27   does it run external displays well, Mike?

00:46:28   And you're like, it does.

00:46:29   Mentally sold.

00:46:31   So I got one of those things as well.

00:46:33   And boy, it has been great for just like a couple of little like overnight trips that

00:46:39   we've done, like to be able to take that instead of the regular, like MacBook Pro is so nice.

00:46:46   I agree with you.

00:46:46   It's basically a perfect laptop.

00:46:48   I'm still really happy to have the MacBook Pro as the quote desktop computer to do stuff

00:46:53   like video renders, but that MacBook Air is going to be like, okay, you live in the basement.

00:46:59   You are most of the time just a writing computer connected to an external display.

00:47:04   But if I've ever got to travel anywhere, like that is the laptop that is coming with me.

00:47:08   No questions asked.

00:47:09   It is so good.

00:47:10   I hope they keep that form factor forever.

00:47:13   I can't imagine changing it now.

00:47:15   Like this feels like the laptop that was born out of Apple Silicon.

00:47:19   You know, if you think about it, they tried to do something similar to this, the MacBook,

00:47:25   the 12-inch MacBook, and it was compromised.

00:47:27   Yeah, that's true.

00:47:28   So many ways and in a way that this one just isn't.

00:47:31   And I think it's because they can control the whole power consumption piece and the

00:47:36   battery life and everything because they have more control over the silicon that's going

00:47:40   in it, total control.

00:47:41   So I think this is the laptop that was born out of that.

00:47:44   Yeah, I think my mental framing of it is more like, this is the platonic ideal of what the

00:47:50   MacBook Air was always supposed to be.

00:47:52   As someone who purchased and massively regretted that very first MacBook Air, I was like, this

00:47:58   is what I always wanted it to be.

00:48:00   And they knocked it out of the park with that one.

00:48:02   As audio professionals, we have audio gear.

00:48:07   We do.

00:48:07   I'm not going to run through every single piece that I own, but I think the three most

00:48:13   important parts for me are my microphone, my audio interface and my headphones.

00:48:17   These three items that I am going to suggest, these are not recommendations for the listener

00:48:24   to buy.

00:48:24   These are what I use as a professional.

00:48:28   My microphone is the Neumann KMS 105.

00:48:32   I love this microphone because it does the best job of making me sound like me, which

00:48:39   when you edit yourself hours and hours of yourself, I find that to be more acceptable.

00:48:46   When I hear myself through his microphone, it sounds like how my voice sounds.

00:48:50   Where other microphones I've used may make me sound too bassy.

00:48:53   And I don't like that sound.

00:48:55   But the Neumann does a good job.

00:48:57   It is an XLR microphone.

00:48:59   It doesn't plug in via USB-C.

00:49:01   So I have to have an interface to turn that analog signal into a digital one.

00:49:05   And I use a product called the Sound Devices USB Pre 2.

00:49:08   What I like about this is it is a very customizable piece of equipment, but all of the customization

00:49:16   is done on the equipment.

00:49:17   There's no software.

00:49:18   That's really good for me because I've owned this thing now for probably near, I've owned

00:49:25   this thing for 10 years.

00:49:26   And I don't intend to ever buy another one of them.

00:49:30   It will keep working until it breaks and no software is going to outdate it.

00:49:34   And my headphones are the Beyerdynamic DT 770 Pro.

00:49:39   For me, it's not about audio quality.

00:49:43   Like lots of people talk about the audio quality of these headphones.

00:49:46   That's not so important to me.

00:49:47   These are very comfortable.

00:49:49   Oh, okay.

00:49:50   Yeah, I'm looking at them.

00:49:51   They look extremely padded.

00:49:55   Yes, they're very padded.

00:49:56   That's the most important part to me because like on days like today, I will wear these

00:50:01   headphones for like four or five hours without a break.

00:50:05   So I want something that is really comfortable.

00:50:08   It doesn't press on my head too much.

00:50:09   They're very soft.

00:50:11   They also have a coiled cable, which is helpful for getting out of the way of stuff.

00:50:15   Yeah, coiled cables are nice.

00:50:18   This is one of those cases where I kind of feel like I have sort of general principles

00:50:23   around stuff.

00:50:25   I'm generally trying to do like fewer things but better things.

00:50:29   But the fewer is more important.

00:50:32   And this is one of these cases where I'm just using the Apple Studio headphones.

00:50:37   The AirPods Pro Max.

00:50:39   Yeah, the AirPods Max.

00:50:41   The AirPods Pro Max Studio.

00:50:44   Right, ultra overhead headphones.

00:50:47   Metal Edition, I think is the full name for them.

00:50:50   Because this is just one of these areas of like, I just don't want to have multiple

00:50:54   sets of headphones around.

00:50:56   Like I already have the little AirPods and I have an overhead set.

00:51:00   And this is a case of like, I'd rather have fewer things.

00:51:03   So I'll take the headphones that have some compromises like the Apple head over your

00:51:07   headphones.

00:51:08   They're obviously not amazing for podcasting, but they're fine for podcasting.

00:51:13   And I'd rather just have fewer things in this one case.

00:51:17   That's what I'm using.

00:51:18   I like them.

00:51:18   I would never really recommend them for any kind of professional as a podcasting headphones.

00:51:24   But I do think they're overall like pretty good over your headphones.

00:51:27   But they do lose out on comfort over a long period of time.

00:51:32   Like I just can't wear them all day.

00:51:35   And it would be my number one request for Apple if and when they ever revise these things.

00:51:40   It's like, you've got to make them lighter Apple.

00:51:43   I don't know why they have to be so heavy.

00:51:46   Yeah, they are really truly excellent airplane headphones.

00:51:51   Yes.

00:51:53   They are- I do not like them for podcast recording headphones.

00:51:56   Yeah.

00:51:57   I think you've used them while traveling or have you changed your mind on that?

00:52:01   No, I- when I travel and record, I will use them.

00:52:04   Because it just means I don't have to bring two pairs of headphones on a trip.

00:52:08   Because I will want them in my bag for when I listen to things on planes.

00:52:13   I don't really want to have like a second set of headphones in my luggage.

00:52:17   So I will use them for that.

00:52:19   And so we'll have two of the world's most expensive cable just like hanging around.

00:52:25   That's also a thing where one of my other little principles with like stuff in your life is try

00:52:33   to pay attention to like things you use frequently or like small little annoyances.

00:52:39   I think people really underrate the increase in quality of life of like,

00:52:44   can you spend some money to fix in an everyday annoyance or like a high touch annoyance?

00:52:51   Like if you have some like light switch that you press every single day and it's not good,

00:52:56   like just, you know, go on YouTube and look into like how to change that.

00:53:00   It's totally worth doing those kinds of things.

00:53:02   I think people underrate how valuable it is to get rid of small annoyances.

00:53:07   And I just realized today while we were preparing for this show,

00:53:11   oh, I have a frequent annoyance, which is around the world's most expensive cable

00:53:17   to connect the Apple headphones to my audio interface, which is it's just a little too short.

00:53:24   And so it's always trailing over my keyboard and being slightly in the way.

00:53:29   And it's like, ah, right.

00:53:31   Pay attention to the things that annoy you in life.

00:53:33   For $3, I can buy a coiled extension cable for the headphone to plug that into.

00:53:40   And it's like, yes, I will do that.

00:53:42   I will fix this like tiny annoyance in my life that is there every time I'm recording a podcast

00:53:47   or recording audio for a video.

00:53:50   Just try to keep those things in mind.

00:53:51   But to round out my own audio equipment, I have the Shure SM58 microphone.

00:53:57   Why?

00:53:59   I cannot remember at all.

00:54:00   I just have this one now.

00:54:02   I like it.

00:54:03   And I know your favorite is that for my audio interface, I'm using the Zoom F6

00:54:10   multi-track field recorder, which I really like and is entirely appropriate to task.

00:54:16   Highly recommend it.

00:54:17   Super recommended for people that use boom mics in the field to get their 32-bit float recording.

00:54:25   Yep.

00:54:25   Yep.

00:54:26   It's great.

00:54:26   As it says on the website for those hard to reach places.

00:54:31   Yes, specifically designed for outdoor use and has six XLR inputs, which I only ever use one.

00:54:39   It's going to be super good when the apocalypse comes and your

00:54:43   sound recorder will still be left behind.

00:54:45   Yeah, it has a loop attachment for my belt so I can use it very easily with my ratchet belt.

00:54:51   Turns out this is part of the everyday carry.

00:54:59   We didn't even know.

00:55:01   Didn't even know.

00:55:02   What's he doing in this segment?

00:55:03   I mean, I know you make fun of me for using this thing.

00:55:05   I genuinely really do like it.

00:55:07   It has a little knob right on the front front so I can adjust my audio input.

00:55:11   I can like, it just, I don't know.

00:55:12   It has the buttons, physical buttons for the couple of things that I want to use.

00:55:16   No, I agree with all that.

00:55:17   Like I feel that way about my USB pre 2.

00:55:20   There are many products that exist that are not as extreme as the one that you have that

00:55:26   would give you those things, but like of all of the things in your audio environment that

00:55:31   calls me problems, that is maybe the fewest now.

00:55:34   Yeah.

00:55:34   And it's also for the same reason with yours of there's zero software component, right?

00:55:39   It's just like a couple of buttons.

00:55:40   I'm a big fan of Zoom.

00:55:42   Like Zoom now make a product which is more focused around podcasting.

00:55:49   Steven has one and I've been meaning to look into getting like I have a, uh, the Zoom H6,

00:55:56   which is what I take with me when I'm on the go, right?

00:55:59   It is my like field recorder, I suppose like my actual travel recording device.

00:56:05   Like I don't take my USB pre, uh, when I, cause that's, I would worry to break that.

00:56:10   And I've had a Zoom forever and this is what they're so good at.

00:56:13   Like is making products to be taken out into the world.

00:56:16   It is called the Podtrack P4. They actually now have a few products in this area and it

00:56:24   is just built a little bit more in the mind of podcast recording than what they usually do,

00:56:31   which is like music and TV production and that kind of stuff.

00:56:35   And just has a few really interesting features that, uh, just look really cool.

00:56:39   I think one of the things it does is it will allow you to record to an SD card at the same

00:56:46   time as using the USB.

00:56:47   Ooh, I could be immediately sold on that if that is a feature.

00:56:51   Yeah.

00:56:51   Okay.

00:56:52   So that was one of the things that I really liked about this product compared to some

00:56:57   of the other stuff that exists is that you can do both.

00:57:00   My field recorder does do dual recording, but only when it's being used as a field recorder,

00:57:06   not when it's being used as a USB interface.

00:57:08   So, okay.

00:57:09   I could totally be sold on switching out to the Podtrack P4 if that feature works as described.

00:57:14   Yeah.

00:57:14   Yeah, that would be great.

00:57:16   I'm a man who believes in the excessive input devices to computers.

00:57:20   Oh, okay.

00:57:21   My desk is covered with input devices.

00:57:23   Sitting in front of me, I have a mouse, a trackpad, a keyboard, and a drawing tablet.

00:57:28   Oh, the full suite.

00:57:29   I have the full compliment and I want to make my recommendations for each.

00:57:33   You just need a foot switch.

00:57:34   I have that now.

00:57:35   The stream deck foot switch thing.

00:57:37   Have you seen that?

00:57:38   No, I was just making a joke, but okay.

00:57:40   Yeah, I have one.

00:57:41   You know, you know the stream deck, the thing that you press the little buttons?

00:57:44   Yeah, I see people use this.

00:57:46   It's one of those things I've never quite felt like there's a place for this in my life,

00:57:51   but I get the idea of it.

00:57:52   But they make a stream deck pedal so you can, I don't know, run some shortcuts.

00:57:58   What they have it for is for like streamers to be able to hit the mute or whatever.

00:58:03   Okay, so it's a giant mute button.

00:58:05   All right, that makes sense.

00:58:06   But you can use it for a bunch of different things.

00:58:07   But it's like a bunch of switches on the floor that I'm activating with my feet is just,

00:58:13   sounds like trouble.

00:58:13   Yeah, it's just three.

00:58:14   But hey, like maybe to change scene or something, you know, like you're gaming,

00:58:18   you're in like a big gaming moment and you want to hit the button.

00:58:21   Make sure that you're, I don't know.

00:58:24   Don't break flow.

00:58:25   Exactly.

00:58:25   So my recommendation for drawing tablet is the same as it's been forever,

00:58:31   which is the Wacom Intuos Pro trackpad, Magic Trackpad.

00:58:35   I mean, of course, like why would I use anything else as the trackpad?

00:58:38   And I use this as mostly a secondary input device to my mouse.

00:58:42   So I use this for panning, zooming, scrolling.

00:58:45   This is really good for audio editing.

00:58:47   So like a lot of the time I will be, so this is how I have it.

00:58:50   I have my trackpad on the right, my drawing tablet on the left,

00:58:53   because I am cross dominant.

00:58:56   So I'll be doing like fine edits in Logic with the drawing tablet

00:59:01   and then zooming and panning around the trackpad.

00:59:03   And so like I'm using both hands.

00:59:05   That's really good.

00:59:06   I also use keyboard commands too, but like I like to have that kind of complement when

00:59:10   I'm editing.

00:59:10   So I'm like in it.

00:59:12   But for most of my kind of just general usage, I use a Logitech mouse.

00:59:17   I use the MX Master 3S.

00:59:20   So the MX Master 3 has been around forever.

00:59:23   It's my favorite mouse.

00:59:24   It's very comfortable.

00:59:25   It's got all the features that I like, but they recently added the 3S, which has a silent

00:59:31   click.

00:59:32   I just want to say you recommended this to me, I think on Mortex or I don't know when.

00:59:36   I bought that.

00:59:37   I am so happy you recommended that to me.

00:59:40   I have the MX Master 3 in my office, which love that mouse so good.

00:59:46   I really like the ability to like it has a horizontal scroll wheel next to your thumb.

00:59:51   And to me, that is that is the killer feature for doing the kind of stuff that you're talking

00:59:56   about doing with the trackpad.

00:59:57   Like the ability to horizontally scroll and vertically scroll and do like zoom in and

01:00:01   zoom out stuff with modifiers is amazing.

01:00:04   But I was so happy that you told me about that silent version because when I'm on the

01:00:09   couch, just like, you know, watching TV with my wife halfheartedly as I'm also doing something

01:00:15   on the computer.

01:00:15   I just hated having something making like click, click, click, click, click noises as

01:00:20   we're watching TV.

01:00:21   The new like 3S version, the silent version of that mouse.

01:00:25   I can't believe how silent it is while also still feeling satisfying to click.

01:00:32   That's the important part.

01:00:34   Yes, that's that's the killer part that I wasn't expecting is like I've used quiet

01:00:38   things before, but they've always felt mushy and terrible to use.

01:00:43   But this one is still satisfying to click.

01:00:45   I was like, oh, this is great.

01:00:46   This is amazing.

01:00:47   I use a lot of silent products for my recording environment, right?

01:00:51   So like my keyboard has silent switches in and they are good, but they don't feel as

01:00:55   good as the louder ones that I use.

01:00:57   But this one, it's like I actually prefer the click feel of the S to the regular MX

01:01:03   Master 3.

01:01:05   Yeah, I could conceivably switch over to that just entirely on my main desk.

01:01:10   I still have one of the regular MX Masters, but if I had to buy another one, I think I

01:01:13   actually would prefer the silent version.

01:01:15   It's like it's very satisfying to use in a way that I just would not have expected

01:01:19   at all.

01:01:20   Keyboards.

01:01:21   All right, so I get the impression, Mike, that you're quite experienced with keyboards.

01:01:26   So, you know, for me, I'm just a Keychron guy.

01:01:32   I've just like bought the same kind of model keyboard for forever.

01:01:35   But so I don't have the vast experience that you do with keyboards.

01:01:41   What are your thoughts here, Mike?

01:01:42   My favorite brand is a company called Mode.

01:01:45   Okay.

01:01:46   Their keyboard, the Mode Sonnet, is my favorite keyboard.

01:01:50   Absolutely.

01:01:52   Bar none.

01:01:52   It feels great to use.

01:01:54   It was pleasant to build.

01:01:55   Oh, you built this one.

01:01:56   Okay.

01:01:57   Yeah, it's a 75%.

01:01:58   And so what I like about that, because I have lots of various fun keycap styles, right?

01:02:04   Like different designs.

01:02:05   A 75% will allow me to show off the majority of a keycap set.

01:02:09   So like I like that.

01:02:11   And but it's compact.

01:02:13   Like I like the what's called a TKL where it's like bigger.

01:02:16   But the 75% is like the nice middle point.

01:02:19   So I like that kind of key layout.

01:02:21   It's got enough keys on it for me.

01:02:22   But they've done a really good job of making it into a small package with some really nice

01:02:27   design elements.

01:02:28   I really love the Mode Sonnet.

01:02:30   They have another product coming later on this year called the Envoy, which is a more

01:02:35   affordable keyboard that they also will sell as a full kit, including switches and keycaps.

01:02:40   I had the opportunity to try out a pre-production unit of the Envoy and really, really liked

01:02:49   it.

01:02:49   And I have one coming in a couple of months, I think.

01:02:52   I think this one could be just a very good default recommendation to people now because,

01:02:58   you know, it's not cheap, but it is not like wildly expensive as some of these keyboards

01:03:04   can get to.

01:03:05   But you can get from them like a full kit, which includes, you know, the full board,

01:03:12   the switches and everything for like around $300.

01:03:16   So you still have to assemble it, yeah?

01:03:18   But you're getting all of the parts in a package.

01:03:21   Yeah, I believe you still have to assemble it.

01:03:24   But the assembly for this keyboard is maybe one of the easiest that I have experienced.

01:03:29   Like they've done a really good job of doing that.

01:03:32   But this keyboard as well is like easily customized too, which I think is very interesting.

01:03:39   Like they've built this system of kind of like how bouncy or stiff you want the typing

01:03:45   to feel.

01:03:46   And the way that you do that customization is very, very simple in a way that I think

01:03:50   would encourage people to do even if they weren't very familiar with building keyboards.

01:03:55   So I really like, I really, really like what they do.

01:03:58   One of my favorite things of Mode stuff is that you can configure them with a bunch of

01:04:02   different design stuff and they have a full configurator on their website so you can see

01:04:06   how it's all going to look.

01:04:07   They are my choice.

01:04:09   Like they make my favorite keyboards.

01:04:10   Yeah, I was just playing around with the configurator for a bunch of options.

01:04:14   I don't know what they are.

01:04:15   It looks good.

01:04:17   I'm intrigued by this layout just a little bit because I do like having just a tiny bit

01:04:23   of space for the arrow keys and for the function keys.

01:04:26   Like I really like these Keychron keyboards that I use, which I think it's basically

01:04:30   the same layout.

01:04:31   It's just a little bit more compressed.

01:04:32   But if there could just be like a tiny bit of space to physically distinguish the arrow

01:04:38   keys, which I'm using constantly, that would be nice.

01:04:41   An exploded layout.

01:04:43   Oh, is that the term for it?

01:04:44   Okay.

01:04:44   Like the Keychron Q1.

01:04:47   I like the Keychron Q series of keyboards.

01:04:50   They are customizable keyboards, right?

01:04:54   They're more akin to the types of things that I make.

01:04:57   You can take them apart and do some modding and fun stuff with them.

01:05:00   Keychron has done a great job of leaning into it and like becoming a really good starting

01:05:04   point.

01:05:05   But their 75% has an exploded layout.

01:05:08   But I tend not to like the visual of that because it ruins the like lines, I think.

01:05:14   Yeah, I was like, I like this layout less because I don't want the arrow keys lower.

01:05:19   That's why I like the other one.

01:05:20   I like the look of that better.

01:05:21   I just need a tiny bit of space.

01:05:24   I don't actually, I think I might find that annoying that the, especially if they're

01:05:28   half offset like that, the arrow keys are 50% lower to create the space.

01:05:33   I think I would not find that pleasant at all.

01:05:35   I think that would be irritating.

01:05:36   Especially when switching between typing on like the Apple keyboards.

01:05:41   I wouldn't.

01:05:42   Yeah, I think I would find that no bueno.

01:05:44   I think probably worth mentioning, I reckon this is going to become a thing maybe more

01:05:49   into the future even than it is now when it comes to work devices, VR headsets.

01:05:54   So we both have the, I guess for work focuses, the MetaQuest Pro.

01:05:59   Yes, we do.

01:06:01   And people know that from this, from the special that we just put out about how amazing they

01:06:06   are.

01:06:06   Pinning that for the future, really.

01:06:08   It's like when we revisit state of the hardware in the future, I wonder if that point is going

01:06:13   to change.

01:06:14   I would say yes, but I don't know.

01:06:16   Yeah, I predict that that's going to change in the future.

01:06:19   But yeah, if you, if you want to hear our thoughts on that, we recorded an entire special

01:06:25   episode about it.

01:06:26   This episode of Cortex is brought to you by Memberful.

01:06:30   Memberful is the easiest way to start selling memberships to your audience, letting you

01:06:34   build sustainable, recurring revenue and is used by the biggest independent creators on

01:06:39   the web.

01:06:40   Maybe you have an existing membership set up, but it's getting too complicated to manage

01:06:45   and you want to simplify things so you can get back to focusing on what you are best

01:06:49   at.

01:06:50   Well, Memberful has everything that you need to run a membership program efficiently and

01:06:55   fantastically, including a streamlined and powerful checkout, easy to use member portal,

01:07:01   transaction emails and a member management dashboard.

01:07:05   Memberful seamlessly integrates with the tools that you already use, including MailChimp,

01:07:09   WordPress, Stripe, Discord and more.

01:07:12   They really do make these integrations incredibly simple, which I love.

01:07:17   We use Memberful Relay FM to power our membership program.

01:07:20   You've heard us talk about Moretext a bunch of times on the show.

01:07:23   That's how we use it.

01:07:24   And so when someone signs up for Moretext, they get the ability to be added to our members

01:07:28   Discord, which is just for them.

01:07:29   And Memberful's integration with Discord means that we don't have to do any management

01:07:32   of that, which is fantastic.

01:07:33   There's nothing manual in that process of bringing people in.

01:07:36   And also with Memberful, we have the ability to deliver podcast feeds so we can have exclusive

01:07:42   members only content that people get when they sign up.

01:07:45   And it's really easy for them to grab those feeds, put them in their podcast app of choice.

01:07:49   And it's super simple.

01:07:50   We love that.

01:07:51   It's obviously an important part of what we do at Relay FM and Memberful makes that incredibly

01:07:55   easy.

01:07:56   Go and get started for free today.

01:07:58   There is no credit card required.

01:08:00   Go to memberful.com/cortex.

01:08:02   Go there right now and check it out at memberful.com/cortex.

01:08:06   This could be the start of something exciting.

01:08:09   Our thanks to Memberful for their support of this show and all of Relay FM.

01:08:13   So we've spoken about the tools that we use for work.

01:08:17   We typically use these tools in our offices, but there are a lot of different physical

01:08:22   things in an office.

01:08:24   Desks, chairs, all that kind of stuff.

01:08:26   Spiders, if you're working in the basements.

01:08:28   Yeah.

01:08:28   Roombas, air purifiers.

01:08:31   What desk are you using in your life?

01:08:33   I think we're both using the same thing, which is the fully Jarvis model for the standing

01:08:38   desk, which it looks like when I was trying to do the links today, it looks like they've

01:08:42   been acquired by Herman Miller.

01:08:43   Yes.

01:08:43   Which is interesting because I'm using the Herman Miller Embody chair as well.

01:08:48   So it looks like Herman Miller is trying to corner the market for this kind of stuff.

01:08:53   It's no longer fully.

01:08:55   It's now just the Jarvis desk from Herman Miller.

01:08:58   This happened like a month ago.

01:09:00   Okay.

01:09:01   So did the fully company get completely absorbed?

01:09:04   I believe so.

01:09:05   Okay.

01:09:06   Right.

01:09:06   Because I was wondering, because so standing desks are fantastic.

01:09:11   I'm really happy to have the option to use them that way.

01:09:15   But there's one thing that I was trying to find that fully made a product that I think

01:09:19   must have gotten destroyed in the acquisition.

01:09:21   I think they called it like their TikTok, but the generic term for this is a balance

01:09:28   board.

01:09:28   Yeah.

01:09:29   This is a thing where if you're going to have a standing desk, I bought this on a whim,

01:09:35   but it turned out to be a critical piece for the standing desk.

01:09:39   And it is just this little thing.

01:09:40   It's like a seesaw that you're standing on while you're working at the desk.

01:09:44   And I don't know why, but it just gives you this little somehow slightly balancing is

01:09:53   physically easier to do for a long period of time while you're standing and working

01:09:57   than just standing.

01:09:59   I was just going on Amazon trying to find one that looks similar.

01:10:02   I think the key is you want one that's low profile.

01:10:05   So you don't want one that looks like this is actually an exercise in balance.

01:10:11   You want something that's like a very low profile legs on a rocking horse kind of thing.

01:10:16   Like that's what I have.

01:10:17   And it's great.

01:10:18   Every time I put the standing desk up, if I'm not actively walking on the treadmill,

01:10:23   I want to be standing on that little balance board and it makes all of the difference in

01:10:26   the world for using a standing desk in upright mode.

01:10:28   Yeah.

01:10:29   I think trying to do some googling, it may have been called the float deck.

01:10:34   Yeah.

01:10:35   Something like that.

01:10:36   Yeah.

01:10:36   I don't know.

01:10:37   The only reason I was trying to find it is it's the lowest profile one of these I've

01:10:41   ever seen.

01:10:42   And I just think that makes a big difference.

01:10:43   It's just like very slight balance.

01:10:46   And all of the other balance boards seem much more like, oh, we're trying to give you

01:10:50   a core workout while you're at your desk.

01:10:52   Yeah, this isn't for yoga.

01:10:54   Yes.

01:10:54   It's just so your feet don't get tired standing all day.

01:10:56   I found it just significantly more effective than mats that they often try to sell you

01:11:01   with a standing desk.

01:11:02   Like here, stand on a mat.

01:11:03   I find that makes no difference at all in terms of tiredness.

01:11:07   Whereas the like a low profile balance board is perfect.

01:11:10   Okay.

01:11:10   Yeah.

01:11:11   I use the fully Jarvis desks too.

01:11:14   I have a couple here in the studio.

01:11:15   I like their bamboo one, which they do still sell.

01:11:18   And I use that and have used Herman Miller M body chairs forever.

01:11:23   This is one of those things where like, if I could give a piece of advice, it is to,

01:11:31   if you're working at home to invest as much as you can into a good chair.

01:11:35   Yes.

01:11:37   Yeah.

01:11:37   Because I did the thing where I went on Amazon and I bought a 200 pound chair.

01:11:43   And after a year, the hydraulics went.

01:11:46   What I like about Herman Miller is while they are expensive, they have a very good long

01:11:53   manufacturer's guarantee.

01:11:55   So like I've had Herman Miller chairs for eight or nine years.

01:12:01   One of mine, the chair is stuck at my height, which is fine because it's my height, but

01:12:09   it means the chair isn't working.

01:12:10   And we contacted Herman Miller and we were arranging for them to take it away and fix

01:12:15   it.

01:12:15   And like, they're just going to fix it.

01:12:16   So like it falls within their warranty.

01:12:18   The Herman Miller warranty is like one of the great parts about it, but the chairs are

01:12:23   just super good.

01:12:24   I've used the Embody forever is my huge recommendation.

01:12:29   They're nicely customizable.

01:12:30   They make them for gamers now.

01:12:31   If you need your chair to be a gamer's chair, they make Herman Miller Embody gamers chairs.

01:12:37   So, you know.

01:12:37   What does that mean?

01:12:40   It just looks a little bit different.

01:12:42   Okay.

01:12:42   Is it just an aesthetic look?

01:12:43   They just made it look more gamer-y.

01:12:46   It really is just the Herman Miller Embody for gamers.

01:12:50   I know you keep saying that, but it's like, when you say for gamers, I just imagine,

01:12:54   oh, so it's like pink and black or something.

01:12:56   Like that's what it is.

01:12:57   Okay.

01:12:57   Number one in the FAQ.

01:12:59   How is this chair different?

01:13:00   We've teamed up with Logitech to make updates.

01:13:04   Seat has an additional layer of foam to support your posture while you play.

01:13:08   And we developed new technology to keep you cool.

01:13:11   There really isn't barely any, there's barely any difference.

01:13:14   It's like a little bit smushier, I guess.

01:13:17   And that's it.

01:13:17   That's because you don't need to change the chair, right?

01:13:22   Like that, that's the whole thing.

01:13:23   They've just updated the design a little bit to make it look more gamer-y.

01:13:28   Oh, okay.

01:13:28   I see what you mean.

01:13:29   It does look cooler.

01:13:31   It does look gamer-y, right?

01:13:32   Right.

01:13:32   But like, that's the whole point of like, if you're going to make a gamer's version,

01:13:36   it's already the perfect chair.

01:13:39   So like, you don't need to change it.

01:13:42   So I agree with you on this chair.

01:13:44   I also agree that this is the home office purchase that you do need to kind of bully

01:13:49   people into.

01:13:49   And everyone always says, I should have done this sooner.

01:13:53   Is like, buy a good chair.

01:13:55   If you are working at home, buy a good chair.

01:13:58   I think the good chair matters significantly more than a good desk.

01:14:02   Like, it's funny, I had family was just visiting recently and my cousin had been

01:14:07   traveling in Europe and he was like way behind on work.

01:14:11   And while he was here, I was like, Hey man, you can just like use my office.

01:14:15   It's like, you know, have an actual place to just like work in the mornings.

01:14:19   Cause like I'm downstairs in the basement, like this space is free.

01:14:22   And his number one thing is like, he's like, Oh, I could cry sitting in an actual

01:14:27   proper chair again, doing work as opposed to try and like work at, you know, at

01:14:32   random cafes.

01:14:33   He's like, Oh, this is, this is amazing.

01:14:35   Like, thank you so much.

01:14:37   And the chair was the big deal of like, he works at home and he has a regular chair

01:14:41   and like, once you don't have it, you realize like how hard it is on your body

01:14:46   working in a chair that's not perfectly designed for you.

01:14:49   I used to have the, uh, the Aeron, I think is how they say it.

01:14:53   It's their older office chair.

01:14:55   And at some point, I can't remember.

01:14:57   I think when I left the glass cube, I tried out the Embody and the Embody is a

01:15:01   significant improvement.

01:15:03   The only thing I do wonder about is I, I do wish it had a headrest.

01:15:09   That's the old, that's why when you said gamer chair, I was a bit like, I was

01:15:14   hoping for a headrest and I would, I would seriously consider buying it.

01:15:18   It's the only thing that I know most of the time you don't actually need a

01:15:23   headrest when you're sitting at a chair and it's all set up properly, but I do

01:15:27   feel like it's something that's missing.

01:15:30   And if they made the Embody with a headrest, I would upgrade instantly.

01:15:34   Or it's the only thing that would make me think like, maybe I should just try

01:15:38   out some other chairs with a headrest and see how that is.

01:15:41   But yeah, so that, that is my only very minor complaint.

01:15:44   There is a company called Atlas Headrest who have made an aftermarket headrest.

01:15:51   Oh, okay.

01:15:53   For the gaming chair.

01:15:55   Oh no, for the gaming version.

01:15:57   All right.

01:15:57   I figure it will probably work on all of them because it's probably the same, but

01:16:03   like you got, maybe take a look, but like...

01:16:05   Okay, send me that link.

01:16:07   I want to check that out.

01:16:08   But there's this, I just Googled it and I came across it.

01:16:11   So you should, you should look at this.

01:16:13   Okay.

01:16:13   Because I imagined that there's probably quite a lot of people that feel the way

01:16:17   you do, especially now there's the gamers.

01:16:20   How does it connect?

01:16:21   I can't work it out either.

01:16:23   I'm like, hold on, I can't deal with the suspense.

01:16:27   Let me look at the back of my chair.

01:16:30   Where does this...

01:16:31   I don't understand how it fits.

01:16:32   Is there a thing that comes...

01:16:34   Oh!

01:16:35   I think it maybe just clips on to the back piece.

01:16:41   Yeah.

01:16:42   Okay.

01:16:42   The gamer chair might be different.

01:16:44   I will have to investigate more than in the middle of our podcast.

01:16:48   Yeah.

01:16:48   I think the gamer chair has a slightly different connector at the top, but I

01:16:53   can't tell if I just pull apart my chair if it has that same piece.

01:16:58   It's a little bit unclear to sell.

01:16:59   No, it's bolted on to the...

01:17:01   Oh, oh, I see.

01:17:02   Right?

01:17:02   They've done a good job of making it look like it was made by Herman Miller.

01:17:06   Oh, okay.

01:17:07   Right.

01:17:07   Thank you.

01:17:08   I would have pulled apart my chair to see where this plugs in.

01:17:11   It looks so integrated, I thought I was looking at a different part of it.

01:17:14   Okay.

01:17:15   Sold immediately.

01:17:16   I don't know how, but just try and triple check that it's not just for the gaming one.

01:17:23   Look, even if it's not for the other one, I'm going to try to make it fit.

01:17:25   I got a hammer.

01:17:27   I can make it fit.

01:17:28   And I'm sure you have a black chair, so they have a black one, so you probably don't even

01:17:33   need to worry.

01:17:34   Yeah, yeah, yeah.

01:17:35   No, that's...

01:17:36   Okay, great.

01:17:36   Thank you.

01:17:37   I'm going to give that a shot.

01:17:38   Pro gamer.

01:17:39   Yeah, for all my stream.

01:17:40   Yeah, I mean, I understand why you would want that.

01:17:42   I've never wanted it, but you do that leaning back thing that you do when you think?

01:17:46   Oh, I guess that is the difference, yes.

01:17:48   I lean back much more.

01:17:50   Like I've seen you do it in VR, right?

01:17:52   When you're really thinking about something, you take a big lean back.

01:17:57   And so I could imagine you would like some headrest support in that moment.

01:18:01   Great.

01:18:02   I've just sent a message off to get that ordered for me.

01:18:06   I mentioned earlier about my charging woes for my devices.

01:18:11   I use a variety of products by close friends of the show, Studio Neat.

01:18:16   They make the material dock line of products.

01:18:19   Now, the products that they have now available are all focused around having a Qi charger,

01:18:25   having like MagSafe chargers built into the products.

01:18:28   But I used to use their products when it was you would like thread a lightning cable through.

01:18:35   Yes, I remember doing that, yep.

01:18:37   That's what I have.

01:18:38   Okay.

01:18:39   So I use those ones and I love them.

01:18:42   Eventually, I guess I will have to move to the upright charger that they have now when

01:18:47   the USB-C phone comes.

01:18:50   Although I am going to try and modify with a dremel or something.

01:18:56   No.

01:18:56   To see if I can get these things to work because they are perfect the way that they are.

01:19:00   But I will try.

01:19:03   It won't work, but I will try.

01:19:05   I might as well give it a go and see if I can fit a USB-C cable into this thing.

01:19:09   But they are what I use there.

01:19:11   And I wanted to just give two recommendations around charging solution things.

01:19:16   My preferred delivery of power is Anker stuff.

01:19:20   And Anker make a selection of the GaN charging products now where you can have like a couple

01:19:30   USB-C power delivery and a regular USB.

01:19:34   I just have one of those just plugged into a charging port on my desk and I can just

01:19:38   swap out cables and I really like them for that.

01:19:41   But my main recommendation is the Miros smart power strips.

01:19:47   This company, Miros, makes a surge protector, which you can turn on and off with HomeKit,

01:19:53   but you can also break out every plug into its own individual HomeKit addressable switch.

01:20:00   Oh, wow.

01:20:01   So it's like six power outlets and also USB.

01:20:05   They come as a group in HomeKit so you can turn it all on and off or you can break it

01:20:09   out into seven.

01:20:11   So you have six plugs and then the USBs.

01:20:14   Oh, wow.

01:20:15   That is killer.

01:20:15   Right.

01:20:16   And so you can have different automations for different things.

01:20:21   So like I have like an automation that if I have my there's one that's just called iPad

01:20:26   and it will just turn on and off at random parts in the day to keep the iPad charged.

01:20:31   I have at home, we have a lava lamp.

01:20:34   The lava lamp is plugged into one of these and it will just turn the lava lamp on and

01:20:38   off for a few hours in a day at home where I have like a bunch of I have like a basic

01:20:43   like the network closet, right?

01:20:45   It's just got like all kinds of things in there from the alarm system to the Internet

01:20:50   and all that kind of stuff.

01:20:51   And I have each of those set individually.

01:20:53   So if I need to power cycle one, I could just do it from my phone.

01:20:57   Miraost products are great and I'm a big fan of them.

01:21:01   I actually don't know if they are available outside the UK.

01:21:06   This might be one of the very rare things where it's UK only because I believe I believe

01:21:12   this product comes from the Hong Kong market, I think.

01:21:16   And we have the same power outlets if they are available outside.

01:21:20   Great.

01:21:21   But America, you have a ton of things.

01:21:24   Yeah, we haven't even gotten into the world of HomeKit stuff.

01:21:26   But this is always the great pain of living in the UK is there's so much cool HomeKit

01:21:32   stuff.

01:21:32   I'm like, oh, wow, I want that.

01:21:34   I was like, oh, it's not available in the UK.

01:21:36   But this is the one this is a great one that we can get.

01:21:39   Miraost, they make loads of HomeKit products as well.

01:21:44   Like they have like a whole set of things that they make.

01:21:46   Indoor and outdoor power solutions and like really they make some super cool stuff.

01:21:53   I've been very happy with my Miraost products.

01:21:55   Okay, well, I've got to check them out.

01:21:57   I've been HomeKitting up the house ever since that basement office.

01:22:00   So I'll see what other stuff they've got in there.

01:22:03   I will tease.

01:22:03   We are toying around with at some point in the not too distant future doing like a state

01:22:08   of the home as well.

01:22:09   Yeah.

01:22:10   For like home automation because I've done a little bit and I'm about to go much further

01:22:16   in a couple of months time.

01:22:17   So I wanted to not talk about that stuff today because I have lots of things that I still

01:22:23   have yet to implement.

01:22:24   Yeah, no, I agree.

01:22:25   I'm in the same space of like sort of halfway caught with a bunch of HomeKit stuff.

01:22:30   That's why it's like, oh, please like send me all of your companies that you know make

01:22:34   good HomeKit stuff that actually works in the UK.

01:22:37   This is one of them.

01:22:37   Yeah, the one that's still really killing me is like air filters.

01:22:40   I'm like, oh, come on, man.

01:22:41   Like there's got to be one.

01:22:43   Like an air purifier.

01:22:44   Yeah, air purifiers.

01:22:45   I haven't found one that's good and it's very frustrating.

01:22:48   Yeah, I would also like to know that.

01:22:50   Yeah.

01:22:51   Maybe people could write in and let us know.

01:22:53   We can leave this as an exercise to the cortexes.

01:22:55   Yeah, I think Mirose make a smart Wi-Fi air purifier works with Apple HomeKit.

01:22:59   Oh, okay.

01:23:00   Well, I'll check it out.

01:23:01   You look at that and let me know.

01:23:02   I will.

01:23:03   The thing that's been killing me is like the reason I was interested in just like, oh,

01:23:06   the sockets work with HomeKit is trying to like find stuff that if there's no UK version

01:23:12   of, oh, it's HomeKit, at least I could just control it with a socket.

01:23:15   So I have that with like a couple of space heaters.

01:23:17   But as far as like it tells, like all of the air purifiers, if you try to turn them on

01:23:22   with the socket, they like require some additional confirmation and I hate it.

01:23:26   I thought I had solved it with the exact same thing recently.

01:23:30   Yeah.

01:23:31   Yeah.

01:23:31   No, you still need to press the on button.

01:23:33   You turn it on.

01:23:34   It's like, come on, man.

01:23:36   I'm looking at it now.

01:23:37   The Mirose smart Wi-Fi air purifier.

01:23:40   Okay, great.

01:23:42   I will check that out and I will report back.

01:23:43   Report back.

01:23:44   If we ever do that state of the home show.

01:23:46   When it comes to what's on my desk, great.

01:23:49   There's always something on my desk.

01:23:50   Yeah.

01:23:51   Every single day.

01:23:52   It's called the Sidekick Notepad.

01:23:53   Oh, Sidekick Notepad.

01:23:54   Is that on your desk every day?

01:23:55   It is available on my desk because it is perfectly made to sit between me and my keyboard on

01:24:00   sale at cortexbrand.com.

01:24:02   I swear I didn't set this up, but I just realized like, oh yeah, can we say that we're trying

01:24:06   to make Cortex Brand one of those companies that's, if you like one of our products, you

01:24:11   like lots of our products?

01:24:12   Like, I know our lead designer spends a lot of time making sure these things are nice

01:24:19   in absolutely every way.

01:24:21   I guess it's what we're hoping to achieve, right?

01:24:23   That's kind of the goal because it's what we like.

01:24:26   That there are certain companies that you can just keep buying any product that they

01:24:31   make and know that you're going to get some kind of consistent experience from that.

01:24:36   So like Herman Miller is one of them and Bellroy is another one.

01:24:40   Peak Design is another one.

01:24:42   And so, yeah, my hope would be that in a few years time, people would consider us the same

01:24:47   way for the things that we're making of like, oh, I want this kind of product, Cortex Brand

01:24:53   make it.

01:24:53   Well, I know I'm going to like that.

01:24:55   That is a goal for sure.

01:24:57   We just, we need to get more products out.

01:25:00   You know.

01:25:00   Yeah.

01:25:02   How hard can it be to painstakingly make a new product?

01:25:06   How hard can it be?

01:25:07   Can't be hard at all.

01:25:08   All right, I'm going to use this as an opportunity to transition from office stuff to exercise

01:25:16   stuff because I feel like my office is also half exercise room.

01:25:22   I mean, so many office buildings have gyms in them.

01:25:24   We'll say this counts.

01:25:26   Sure, that counts.

01:25:26   I've got my city sports treadmill, which is the treadmill that I use when I'm at my standing

01:25:33   desk and walking.

01:25:34   I can't wildly recommend it.

01:25:36   I can simply say it is the one that has lasted the longest without breaking is maybe the

01:25:42   way I would say it.

01:25:44   Sort of like this weird market of wireless chargers on Amazon.

01:25:48   It's always different companies every time you go to buy one.

01:25:51   For whatever reason, the low profile treadmill market feels like it's the exact same thing.

01:25:56   A bunch of like weird fly by night companies with suspiciously similar photographs that

01:26:02   are all like, "Hey, did you want a treadmill to have on your standing desk?"

01:26:05   I just don't understand why there doesn't seem to be a reputable vendor in this market,

01:26:11   but I don't know.

01:26:12   Maybe some spaces are just that way, but clicking through product photos on Amazon for this

01:26:18   kind of stuff is very weird.

01:26:19   You're like, "Are all these companies the same company?

01:26:22   Are they different companies?"

01:26:23   I don't understand what's happening.

01:26:25   Our, I will say now, chief revenue officer at Relay FM, Kerry, got promotion recently.

01:26:31   Congratulations, Kerry.

01:26:32   Congratulations.

01:26:32   Uses a company called Walking Pad.

01:26:35   Walking Pad, okay.

01:26:36   Yeah, and she's very happy with this product.

01:26:39   Walking Pad, all right.

01:26:41   It's foldable, I think.

01:26:43   They do like a foldable one so you can put it away.

01:26:45   Oh, weird.

01:26:47   Yeah.

01:26:47   So I was just getting like derailed because their advertisement on their website feels

01:26:52   very TikTok.

01:26:53   It's like, "Why is it so fast?

01:26:55   Why are the cuts so fast?"

01:26:56   Well, I mean, I think you just answered your own question.

01:26:58   No, no, I know.

01:26:59   I know that's exactly it.

01:27:00   Yeah.

01:27:00   Oh, they make a foldable rowing machine.

01:27:02   What?

01:27:03   How does that even work?

01:27:04   This is one of the weirdest.

01:27:06   This is so strange.

01:27:08   It's one of those water ones too.

01:27:10   Okay, foldable rowing machine.

01:27:13   Okay, I think, you know what?

01:27:16   Looking at it, I think the foldable rowing machine actually makes more sense than a foldable

01:27:21   walking treadmill.

01:27:21   I agree.

01:27:22   This seems more sturdy than the foldable walking treadmill.

01:27:27   Yeah.

01:27:27   Okay, well, that's weird.

01:27:29   I had a water treadmill that I was also going to recommend in my exercise area.

01:27:34   I use one from a company called WaterRower.

01:27:37   This comes with a warning, right?

01:27:39   Warning.

01:27:40   Warning.

01:27:41   This is one of these areas where I followed the rule of fewer but nicer.

01:27:47   So this was one of our purchases at the start of COVID time was we're like, "Oh God, we

01:27:54   got to get some exercise equipment."

01:27:55   So I got myself bikes, I got myself weights, and we got a rowing machine and I decided

01:28:01   like, "Okay, if we're going to do this, let's go all out."

01:28:04   And I got one of these water ones.

01:28:05   The warning is if you like rowing machines, which I do, and I think you do, right?

01:28:10   You have a rowing machine, right?

01:28:12   Yeah, I have the one that you've seen in every gym everywhere, the Concept 2.

01:28:16   Right.

01:28:17   I like the Concept 2 a lot.

01:28:19   I was very used to it from my gym and I have one in the studio.

01:28:23   I think for a certain kind of person, and maybe we're both that kind of person, rowing

01:28:27   works as an aerobic exercise in a way that lots of others don't.

01:28:31   I hate running.

01:28:34   The cross trainer is a nightmare.

01:28:36   And I like most rowing machines, mine does.

01:28:38   I think yours might too.

01:28:39   They have like, you can put a tablet on it.

01:28:41   It's got a mounting place.

01:28:42   You could just watch a video and just row.

01:28:44   It's great.

01:28:45   What I really want is I want my VR headset to work with my rowing machine.

01:28:49   That is my dream.

01:28:49   I want to be able to look around and see a little lake.

01:28:54   That is interesting.

01:28:55   I like that idea a lot.

01:28:58   When I was looking, did you ever come across Hydro?

01:29:02   No.

01:29:04   It's like Peloton for rowing.

01:29:07   You are not selling me on that.

01:29:08   No.

01:29:09   This is why I ended up not doing it because it was really expensive and also required

01:29:14   a subscription.

01:29:15   But they have like a screen with instructors who are rowing on open water.

01:29:21   Oh, weird.

01:29:21   Okay.

01:29:22   So they are like doing the class and they're out on open water and you're rowing along

01:29:27   with them.

01:29:28   And I always thought that was like a really nice idea.

01:29:31   So similarly, yes, how great would it be if you could put on a headset and be rowing on

01:29:37   open water in VR?

01:29:39   Right.

01:29:39   That feels like the way to go.

01:29:41   I just realized that the name is more clever than Hydro.

01:29:45   Like Row.

01:29:45   It's a great name.

01:29:46   Okay, I get it.

01:29:47   But anyway, I don't know if it worked, but that was one of the very first things in like

01:29:52   early COVID days.

01:29:53   I was like, come on, someone must have made like a VR rowing thing that I can use.

01:29:57   But I realized like that was basically when I didn't quite understand how VR really

01:30:02   works.

01:30:02   I was like, oh no, this is a much harder problem than I first thought it was going to be.

01:30:06   But that would be one of my top requests is for someone to solve this problem.

01:30:10   But so anyway, my warning is this.

01:30:12   If you're a person who likes rowing as aerobic exercise, if you ever use a water rower, you

01:30:21   will not be able to go back to the regular rowing machines.

01:30:24   I feel like it's such a better experience that it kind of instantly ruins you for using

01:30:30   any of the other machines.

01:30:32   And I actually told this to my same cousin who was visiting where he's like, oh, hey,

01:30:37   you've got that rowing machine.

01:30:38   I was like, listen, buddy, I got to warn you about something.

01:30:40   Like, do you use rowing machines a lot?

01:30:42   He's like, oh yeah, I use them in the gym all the time.

01:30:44   I'm like, okay, you might not want to do this because the experience of the water rower

01:30:49   just like is much nicer and you will find the gym ones more frustrating.

01:30:54   And he took my advice and skipped using the home rowing machine because of that.

01:30:58   What's so much better?

01:30:59   The only way I can articulate this is with like pens, right?

01:31:05   Where if you've never used a nice pen, you kind of think how much nicer can a pen be

01:31:11   to use and you just don't have an appreciation for it.

01:31:15   There's something about it's the resistance feels very real.

01:31:21   Okay.

01:31:22   It really feels like you are on the water, which is why I think like I wanted the VR

01:31:27   part of it so much is because like, this is a convincing experience.

01:31:31   It doesn't feel like pulling on a cord where the tension is adjusted because the water

01:31:39   is like circling around.

01:31:41   You have the subjective experience of like building up speed because your next pull can

01:31:48   be slightly easier because the water is rotating already.

01:31:52   It really gives you the feeling of like, oh, I've stopped and now I need to get up to

01:31:57   speed and once I'm at speed, it's easy to maintain this pace.

01:32:02   That's the best I can try to do to put it in words.

01:32:04   It's very convincing and it suddenly makes the traditional rowing machines feel like

01:32:09   a completely different experience.

01:32:11   So I have been totally ruined.

01:32:13   Like it's awful.

01:32:14   Like I found the aerobic exercise that I like, but now if I'm ever at a gym that it doesn't

01:32:19   have a water rowing machine, it's like, oh, okay, well, I guess I can do this, but it's

01:32:24   just not the same anymore.

01:32:25   And I kind of wish I never knew.

01:32:27   Like I wish I had just gotten your rowing machine.

01:32:30   I'm fascinated by this folding rowing machine.

01:32:33   Do you think you're going to give it a shot?

01:32:34   No, I like my rowing machine, so I don't want to change it.

01:32:37   I'm very used to the concept too.

01:32:39   I figure I know what you mean though, right?

01:32:41   Like the difference between the like fan that you're pulling and the water.

01:32:46   Plus I imagine there's just like a, does it sound good?

01:32:49   Yes, it does sound good.

01:32:51   I'm sure that helps too, like with the overall experience.

01:32:53   Okay.

01:32:55   So that's on the aerobic side.

01:32:57   And then on the strength side, I got these weights, which are made by a company called

01:33:03   Powerblock.

01:33:03   What, what are you laughing at?

01:33:07   In the early days of COVID, you suggested that I do strength training and suggested

01:33:15   that I get some kind of weight thing for home.

01:33:17   And they were, these kinds of things were so hard to buy.

01:33:21   I could only buy one.

01:33:23   Oh, okay.

01:33:24   Like they, I couldn't get a pair.

01:33:26   How did that even, were you like buying it off eBay or something?

01:33:28   How does you just get one?

01:33:29   Okay.

01:33:30   And so I bought one set of these adjustable dumbbells.

01:33:35   That just, this is very funny, it's like a funny remnant of the beginning of the pandemic

01:33:39   where like now I just have this one heavy adjustable dumbbell.

01:33:44   What was your experience with it?

01:33:47   I mean, I liked it as like, it made sense to me as a thing, but at the time I didn't

01:33:50   really know what I was doing.

01:33:52   Like it's more effective for me now.

01:33:53   Right, this is so long ago, right?

01:33:55   Of course.

01:33:55   Now that I'm more experienced with like what, how weight feels and stuff that like, this

01:34:01   is a smart way to do it, like rather than having like six different dumbbells or different

01:34:05   weights, like the fact that they're adjustable is, I think it's quite clever, but they are

01:34:10   a bit clunky and noisy.

01:34:12   Yes.

01:34:13   So it is, they are noisy.

01:34:15   I completely agree with that.

01:34:17   I am aware that, so I've moved these down into the basement.

01:34:20   So the basement is now also an exercise area as opposed to just being up in our apartment

01:34:25   from before.

01:34:25   And especially in the concrete box, I'm aware that I always want to have my noise

01:34:30   canceling on when I'm using this because it is just a little bit like, there's unpleasant

01:34:35   clanking sounds.

01:34:36   So I might as well just turn on the noise canceling, but I think these things are great.

01:34:40   If you haven't ever tried different adjustable dumbbells, you won't appreciate how many

01:34:45   problems this design solves.

01:34:48   So there's lots of different versions where people try to do adjustable weight dumbbells.

01:34:52   And I just think this design in particular really fixes a lot of annoyances that a lot

01:34:58   of these different things have.

01:34:59   So I highly recommend them.

01:35:01   Although I always think it's funny, I have never seen a company that needs to consolidate

01:35:06   its product line more than this company.

01:35:09   Every time I go to look, it's like insane to me that they have five different versions

01:35:13   of what is basically the same thing.

01:35:15   And even as a very motivated consumer, it's confusing to be like, wait, which of these

01:35:21   things?

01:35:21   Like, I actually need to buy expansions for the ones that I have now.

01:35:25   And I have bounced off this website like three times, even trying to figure out which is

01:35:31   the one that I own.

01:35:32   It's not obvious.

01:35:33   Yeah, like these, these all look exactly the same, but we have Elite USA, Pro EXP, Pro

01:35:39   50, Pro 32.

01:35:41   Yeah, it's, it's, you know, if you're listening Powerblock company, you need to have two at

01:35:48   most versions of these things.

01:35:51   And really, I think you can get away with just one version of these.

01:35:54   There doesn't need to be four different versions of what looks like the exact same product.

01:36:00   So that's all my indoor exercise stuff.

01:36:02   And then for the last one, people always ask because it's a really unusual looking bike

01:36:07   that I got.

01:36:08   It's featured in one of my YouTube videos.

01:36:11   I got this bike from GoCycle, which is an electronic bike company here in the UK.

01:36:16   I really like it.

01:36:19   But the thing about this bike is the primary feature of it is that it is a folding bike.

01:36:26   So if you want to hit the bullet points of an electric bike, and you also don't have

01:36:34   a ton of space, so it has to fold.

01:36:36   This is like the only company that does this well.

01:36:39   So I really like this bike, but I'm finding myself in this funny position now that since

01:36:45   we have the basement space available of like, "Oh, I would not have purchased this if I

01:36:52   were buying a bike now because the folding ability of it is not the main thing anymore."

01:36:59   It used to be like, there was just no place in our apartment for a bike.

01:37:03   So I had to have something that was just tiny.

01:37:06   I'd love right now, if I was going to buy a bike today that's an electric bike, I'd

01:37:11   love to try one of the VanMoof bikes.

01:37:13   I know it works with that Find My integration thing, which is like weirdly high on a feature

01:37:20   for something that I want.

01:37:22   But I think this is another, as far as I could tell, this is another like Brexit casualty.

01:37:27   Like you just cannot get these in the UK.

01:37:29   Like I swear they used to be sold here.

01:37:31   Like I remember looking at them and now it's like completely impossible to find them.

01:37:35   I would still say like for anyone listening, if you want an electric bike and you want

01:37:39   something that folds, Go Cycle is like the only game in town.

01:37:42   That's good.

01:37:43   I'd love to try a VanMoof, but I just can't get my hands on one.

01:37:46   Well, I just got on their website and they got the VanMoof S4 available in June.

01:37:51   Oh, in the UK?

01:37:53   Yes.

01:37:53   Okay.

01:37:54   All right.

01:37:54   Oh, great.

01:37:56   Well, now I'll be tempted for it.

01:37:57   These are something special, these bikes, right?

01:38:00   Like I can see it.

01:38:01   I don't know if it's 3000 pounds worth of bike.

01:38:05   Oh, I know.

01:38:06   I know.

01:38:06   They look so stylish.

01:38:09   Like they, it's one of those things where it's like, I feel like you would feel value

01:38:16   when using it, but it's a lot of money.

01:38:19   Yeah, no, it is a lot of money.

01:38:21   I mean, you want it to have Find My built into it if you spend that money on it.

01:38:25   Cause yeah, I mean, even with my Go Cycle, it's like, I will never leave that thing locked

01:38:30   anywhere that is entirely for like, I'm enjoying riding around and then I come back home.

01:38:35   Great. I have just found what might be potentially the greatest add-on purchase I've ever heard

01:38:41   of in its description.

01:38:43   Okay.

01:38:43   All right.

01:38:43   This is 328 pounds, one off payment for three year coverage.

01:38:47   If the unthinkable happens, our bike hunters will hunt your bike down.

01:38:53   They call them bike hunters.

01:38:54   That is the best name.

01:38:57   We will find your bike if it's stolen.

01:39:01   Yeah, this is why VanMoof is just a very interesting company.

01:39:05   And this is one of those things that they, they have this insurance feature, which is

01:39:10   like, we will find that bike.

01:39:12   And that's actually how they came to my attention in the first place was I'm sure they were

01:39:17   doing it as promo, but just some unbelievable stories of how far they've gone to recover

01:39:21   their bikes.

01:39:22   And it seems like they know that this is the main concern of people who are going to buy

01:39:29   like a top of the line, super expensive bike.

01:39:32   Okay.

01:39:32   This is incredible.

01:39:33   So we will recover your bike in two weeks.

01:39:36   If we can't, we'll replace your bike with one of the same.

01:39:39   That is awesome, but it is the only way you can sell a 3000 pound bike.

01:39:45   And I know you have to pay more to add this on, which like a 3000 pounds, could you not

01:39:50   include it?

01:39:51   Like, I don't know, but like that is a great thing.

01:39:54   I think that's fair as an add-on.

01:39:56   Like I don't mind companies adding that as an add-on.

01:39:58   Again, like in a situation like mine where I would just be using a bike recreationally

01:40:03   and it is always going back in a like locked, secure place.

01:40:07   I'd be like, no, I don't, I don't need that because I'm just never going to use it.

01:40:10   So, and it also allows the company to get a sense of how much do people value this as

01:40:16   an add-on or like how much is this actually costing us?

01:40:19   But they're a very interesting company and that, and now I will find myself tempted again.

01:40:23   But this again is, is like one of these things where it is super expensive, but I am very

01:40:33   hard pressed to think of purchases that I have made that do better in terms of overall increase

01:40:42   in quality of life than getting a nice bike.

01:40:45   These moose don't even look like e-bikes either.

01:40:48   They don't have the like telltale, like this isn't an e-bike.

01:40:52   Like it's got some big thing on it, you know, like some big motor or whatever.

01:40:56   Yeah.

01:40:56   Yeah, that's true.

01:40:57   I am very willing to spend money on a nice experience here because just the like the

01:41:06   pure mood lift from every time I've ever gone on a bike ride around London is just huge.

01:41:12   Yeah.

01:41:12   I mean, I've said it before.

01:41:13   I think London is a weirdly good city for cycling around.

01:41:18   Like the infrastructure has gotten much better, but also for me, just the interestingness

01:41:23   density is very high.

01:41:25   Like I can pick any direction and there's interesting things to look at.

01:41:28   I've specifically encouraged my wife.

01:41:30   I've told her sometimes I'm like, you know, if it's after in the morning and I just seem

01:41:34   like in a slightly down mood, just tell me to go for a bike ride.

01:41:38   And a hundred percent of the time I always come back feeling great.

01:41:42   So it's like you pick areas in your life where you're willing to spend a bunch of money

01:41:47   and this is one of these areas of like, yeah, it's totally worth it.

01:41:52   Like quality of life increase very high.

01:41:56   And again, I really sort of found this because of the pandemic and kind of thinking about

01:42:01   things to do, but I'm really glad that I kind of rediscovered cycling again in the past

01:42:07   few years.

01:42:07   Like I did this a ton when I first moved to London and then it got completely lost in

01:42:12   my life when I worked as a teacher and I just never came back to it.

01:42:15   And I'm like, I'm so happy to have come back to it and like the e-bike era, which also

01:42:20   makes things so nice.

01:42:22   Like I love the ability to put the bike on a kind of low power mode, cycle a whole bunch,

01:42:29   and then for the return journey, put it on like max assistance mode.

01:42:33   It's like, it's so nice to feel like you don't have to hold back how far you want to

01:42:38   go because you have to like preserve that same amount of energy for the return trip.

01:42:43   Anyway, two quick additional things for anyone who does cycling at all.

01:42:47   I'll mention this because people don't think about it, but if you are going to be on a

01:42:51   bike, everyone always thinks about like, "Ooh, I need to wear a helmet."

01:42:54   Like helmet is the top safety piece of equipment.

01:42:57   No, you're wrong.

01:42:58   The number one thing you should wear when you're on a bike, which almost no one does,

01:43:03   is gloves.

01:43:04   Gloves are the actual thing you need to wear.

01:43:08   The most frequent injury, which is really bad, is your hands.

01:43:14   So you can have very small bike accidents or just like fall off a bike because you lose

01:43:19   your balance and you will tear your hands to shreds when they hit the ground.

01:43:25   So it's shocking.

01:43:26   Like basically no one ever thinks about wearing gloves, but get yourself a good pair of padded

01:43:32   gloves.

01:43:33   And I honestly think if you have to pick one piece of safety equipment, that should be

01:43:39   the thing that you wear.

01:43:40   Your probability of an accident here is much higher for like minor accident that is extremely

01:43:48   inconveniencing and very painful is hand injuries when you're on a bike.

01:43:53   - But you should also wear a helmet.

01:43:54   - Yeah, yeah, yeah.

01:43:54   I'm like, I'm not saying don't, I'm just saying like no one thinks of it.

01:43:58   And it's the thing that is...

01:44:00   - That's a good PSA.

01:44:01   Everyone knows you should be wearing a helmet.

01:44:03   Everybody knows this.

01:44:04   Whether they do or they don't, that's their own decision, which isn't necessarily a great

01:44:08   one.

01:44:08   I see so many people in London without helmets on and I don't get it.

01:44:11   Like I really don't understand these like pick up a bike for the afternoon kind of things.

01:44:16   Because nobody has any safety equipment at all, you know?

01:44:21   Like that doesn't make sense to me.

01:44:22   - I guess what I'm trying to express here is like there are plenty of circumstances where

01:44:26   I can completely understand why people don't wear a helmet and a lot of recreational cycling

01:44:31   can fall into this category of like, I'm only on protected bike lanes or like I'm out in

01:44:36   the country and I've just brought a bike, right?

01:44:38   So like there's literally no traffic.

01:44:40   I'm just doing whatever.

01:44:41   And I just think in any of those circumstances, you should still be wearing gloves, right?

01:44:47   Even if you think like, I don't need to wear a helmet for, you know, reasons that you've

01:44:51   decided on, that's fine. You're insane to not wear padded gloves if you're on a bike.

01:44:57   That's my take on this.

01:44:58   Public service announcement over.

01:45:00   And then final thing I'll mention for bike stuff.

01:45:02   A thing that I thought was a total gimmick, but is also massive quality of life improvement

01:45:08   is companies make these automatic electric tire pumps.

01:45:13   And I bought one just on a whim to see if it worked from a company called Psych Plus,

01:45:19   CYC Plus. It's amazing.

01:45:22   It's just like a big Tic Tac shaped thing that does the air pumping of the tires for me.

01:45:28   But like I, you know, it's a bit like the water rower.

01:45:32   I never knew how much it mattered to really hit the maximum pressure on the tires in your

01:45:38   bike because I would just get tired from doing the manual one.

01:45:41   And I was like, impatient getting ready to go.

01:45:43   It's like, no, no, no.

01:45:44   Just use this thing to like put the tire pressure back to max before you ride.

01:45:50   And it makes the whole ride so much nicer.

01:45:53   And to achieve that with a manual pump would take a lot of effort and a lot of hindrance

01:45:59   before you were going to go do the thing.

01:46:01   So if you have a bike, get an automatic tire pump thing.

01:46:05   I just thought it was a gimmick, but it's not.

01:46:07   It's great.

01:46:08   In poking around the VanMoof website, you can actually order their new one for delivery

01:46:13   in July.

01:46:14   Mike, would you stop, would you stop, stop tempting me.

01:46:16   You can just go to their website and get a VanMoof S3.

01:46:20   You could just like order it right now and it will be delivered in July.

01:46:24   And as it says on the website, Gray, the sooner you order, the sooner you ride.

01:46:28   Quiet you.

01:46:31   This episode of Cortex is brought to you by Fitbod.

01:46:38   Getting fitter is something that has knock on effects in other areas of your life that

01:46:43   you might not expect, like having more energy and sleeping better.

01:46:46   But it can be hard to know where to start.

01:46:48   And that's why I'm super pleased to let you know Fitbod is an easy and affordable way

01:46:52   to build a fitness plan that is just for you.

01:46:54   Just for you.

01:46:56   That is the important part.

01:46:57   Fitbod has developed incredibly powerful technology to learn about you, your goals and your training

01:47:03   ability to create a custom dynamic program that is based on your experience and any equipment

01:47:08   you have.

01:47:09   Hey, maybe after you listen to this episode, you're going to have more exercise equipment

01:47:12   than you did before.

01:47:13   Well, with Fitbod, you can put all of that in so it can help tailor your exercise plan

01:47:17   to include this stuff if you have it.

01:47:19   But you don't need to because and this is where I got started with Fitbod.

01:47:22   Fitbod has tons of body weight only workouts, which is a fantastic place to get started.

01:47:28   And getting started with Fitbod is so simple because they have over 1400 HD video tutorials

01:47:35   in the app with exercises shot from multiple angles to make sure that learning every exercise

01:47:41   is incredibly simple.

01:47:42   Personal fitness shouldn't be about competing with other people.

01:47:45   What you want is something that's going to work just for you.

01:47:48   That's when it sticks and you'll see the results that you're looking for.

01:47:51   And Fitbod knows that everybody has their own path to fitness, which is why they customize

01:47:56   things so deeply.

01:47:57   They understand your strength training ability, studies your past workouts and adapts to the

01:48:02   equipment you have on hand to create a training plan that is maximized for you to get the

01:48:07   gains you're looking for by intelligently varying intensity and volume between sessions

01:48:12   without overworking muscles or underworking muscles because that can impact results negatively.

01:48:18   So they balance all of this into a fantastically well suited workout routine.

01:48:24   One of the biggest things for me with the body weight exercises and building more strength

01:48:28   in my body is that I find it easier to play video games.

01:48:30   Like a lot of the pains in my wrists and arms that I used to get, just not a thing anymore.

01:48:34   So Fitbod, thank you for setting me on a path so where I can play as much Zelda Tears of

01:48:41   the Kingdom as I like and I get no pain in my wrists anymore.

01:48:45   Personalized training of this quality can be expensive.

01:48:48   Fitbod is just $12.99 a month or $79.99 a year, but you can get 25% off your membership by

01:48:55   signing up at fitbod.me/cortex.

01:48:57   So go now and get your customized fitness plan at fitbod.me/cortex.

01:49:03   That is 25% off at fitbod.me/cortex.

01:49:07   Our thanks to Fitbod for their support of this show and Relay FM.

01:49:10   Should we talk about entertainment?

01:49:13   - Uh, sure.

01:49:14   What do you want to talk about in entertainment?

01:49:15   - I have like three categories inside of entertainment.

01:49:19   - Okay.

01:49:19   - Tablet, game consoles, e-reader.

01:49:22   - Oh, oh, I do have something to talk about here.

01:49:24   Okay, yeah, yeah, let's do this.

01:49:25   - iPad is the tablet.

01:49:27   For me, it's the iPad mini.

01:49:29   That is my go-to.

01:49:32   It is the computer I use at home.

01:49:33   Like over my iPhone, over my laptop or anything, like my iPad mini is just the best.

01:49:40   I love it so much.

01:49:41   I think that Apple really nailed it.

01:49:44   Like it's for me, the product which feels the most true to the original idea of the iPad,

01:49:50   of just like the content consumption part.

01:49:53   Reading, watching video, like that screen size is just right for me for what I want

01:49:58   out of all of those kinds of use cases.

01:50:01   I'll just run through all of mine real quick because gaming console for me,

01:50:03   the Steam Deck is my primary game console.

01:50:06   - Yeah.

01:50:07   - If a game is available on Steam, that's where I will get it because the Steam Deck

01:50:13   has changed how I play video games.

01:50:15   It has made so many games become drop in, drop out in a way that they weren't before.

01:50:21   A really simple one for me is PGA 2K, like the golfing game.

01:50:25   I've been playing that recently on my Steam Deck where I can just turn on the Steam Deck,

01:50:30   play around and turn it off.

01:50:32   It's like super simple and it's like a 20 minute game experience or whatever.

01:50:35   With my PlayStation, it's like turn on the PlayStation, the PlayStation boots up,

01:50:40   got to choose the game and now I'm like taking over the whole television.

01:50:44   It's just like a bigger hole to do for a game which doesn't require that from me.

01:50:49   A game like God of War, I would want to play that on my PlayStation because it is this big,

01:50:55   beautiful thing.

01:50:57   It's like an event game.

01:50:59   It is not play around in PGA 2K, right?

01:51:02   Which is like, it just doesn't feel like to me it needs the television.

01:51:05   And so the Steam Deck for me makes so many games easy to jump in and out of,

01:51:12   but I do play any game I can, I will play it on the Steam Deck because I just think it's fantastic.

01:51:17   But then I also have my Nintendo Switch and my PlayStation 5 for games that are exclusive

01:51:23   for those.

01:51:23   And like when it comes to exclusives, that's at the moment where the big exclusives are.

01:51:28   They're on the Switch on the PlayStation.

01:51:30   So you've got like Zelda and you've got Spider-Man, for example.

01:51:33   Those games for me that I'm excited for this year that are available on those platforms.

01:51:37   So that's where I'll be playing them.

01:51:38   - Yeah, my gaming life, I can live without exclusives.

01:51:41   Like there's basically no exclusive that's really gonna get me to care enough,

01:51:44   but that's why your recommendation of the Steam Deck, was it this year, I guess?

01:51:50   It was just like recommendation of the year from you.

01:51:52   Like I cannot believe how good that thing is.

01:51:55   It's everything I wanted the Nintendo Switch to be, but actually is.

01:51:58   Love it, love it, love it.

01:52:00   Like can't rate it highly enough.

01:52:02   Just so good and is like the perfect couch gaming thing.

01:52:07   It's like if I am not playing Magic on my big iPad, it's like I am probably on the Steam Deck.

01:52:13   And yeah, it's such a great form factor.

01:52:17   I was worried about the weight.

01:52:18   It's just not an issue.

01:52:19   - It's just ergonomically comfortable.

01:52:22   Like that's how they balance the weight.

01:52:23   Like it just feels good to hold and use.

01:52:26   Yeah, I've been very happy with the Steam Deck.

01:52:28   It's changed the way I interact with games.

01:52:30   It was in my review of my last year's theme,

01:52:33   that the Steam Deck made a huge difference to the way that I am able to relax,

01:52:38   because I'm able to just have so many more games available to me at any point.

01:52:43   And it's also just a very comfortable device to play video games of any kind on.

01:52:47   Going from like, I played Cyberpunk to Truck Simulator.

01:52:52   And all of those experiences felt great on the Steam Deck.

01:52:55   - Yeah, I never really thought about it until you mentioned it now.

01:52:58   But however they make it work of to like instant on, instant off is incredible.

01:53:04   There's no like booting up into the gaming environment.

01:53:07   It's just like no, as soon as you're done,

01:53:08   you just like put it down and then it's right there when you come back.

01:53:11   - Yeah, I just turn it off like any other device.

01:53:13   Like my Switch, like my iPhone, like my iPad.

01:53:15   Like I don't close the game, shut down the system.

01:53:19   Like it's none of that.

01:53:19   Simple.

01:53:21   - What are you doing for e-readers?

01:53:22   - No, I don't do for e-readers.

01:53:24   - Oh, so you don't do for e-readers at all?

01:53:25   Is this category just here for me?

01:53:27   - It's just for you.

01:53:28   - I was wondering like, oh, what does Mike do for e-readers?

01:53:32   - He doesn't.

01:53:32   - I should have remembered because Mike doesn't read.

01:53:34   - No, Mike doesn't like that at all.

01:53:36   - Mike is literate.

01:53:37   He can read.

01:53:37   He just doesn't.

01:53:38   - I choose not to.

01:53:39   - Yeah.

01:53:40   - I listen.

01:53:41   I like to listen.

01:53:41   I don't like to read.

01:53:42   - I think I never told you, but I got the new Amazon e-reader, the big one.

01:53:47   The Scribe, I think is the name for it.

01:53:49   - Oh, the Remarkable Killer.

01:53:51   - Yeah, the Remarkable Killer.

01:53:53   I think it just never came up on the show, but whenever Amazon announced that,

01:53:56   that was like instant purchase for me.

01:53:59   I'll say it's interesting.

01:54:01   All of their features as far as writing on it goes with the pencil,

01:54:06   I would describe all of this as proof of concept.

01:54:10   It works.

01:54:12   It doesn't work great.

01:54:14   They're saying that they're going to be improving it in software

01:54:18   and rolling out features over time.

01:54:20   Amazon is extremely slow and always has been on the software development side.

01:54:25   So as far as I can tell, nothing has changed about it since the day that I bought it.

01:54:30   I'm not using any of the handwriting stuff that they kind of pitch in the marketing,

01:54:35   but I still love it because I have always wanted just a bigger physical screen for reading books.

01:54:44   And that was one of a short list of frustrations for me on the Kindle.

01:54:49   It's like, "These Kindles are great, but they're just too small."

01:54:51   I always really like to bump up the text huge anyway.

01:54:54   So like on a small screen when I'm dealing with like giant text,

01:54:58   it's way too much flipping.

01:54:59   - And this is 10 inches, right?

01:55:01   - Yeah.

01:55:01   - So it's kind of iPad screen size, like regular iPad screen size.

01:55:05   - Yeah, it's like a little smaller than a regular iPad,

01:55:08   which is I think just about perfect for book size.

01:55:11   It feels like it's a little bigger than a normal book would be closed,

01:55:17   but a little smaller than a book would be open.

01:55:19   So I think they really nailed it with the size.

01:55:21   Yeah, I like it a lot.

01:55:23   I'm just very happy to have a bigger screen for reading and having it around has genuinely

01:55:29   has encouraged me to read more because it's just a more comfortable reading experience

01:55:34   than having this little small screen.

01:55:36   So I can't really highly recommend it or rate it as a notebook to write with

01:55:42   because the feature set is just too limited now, but I could see that if they,

01:55:46   you know, like if you're thinking about something like a Remarkable,

01:55:49   it does not come even close to touching the feature set that the Remarkable has.

01:55:55   Even in terms of like moving things that you've already written,

01:55:58   it's like, "No, no, no, you can erase stuff, but you can't circle something and move it."

01:56:03   It's like, "Oh, come on Amazon, that's like the most basic of all features."

01:56:06   But it has the, you know, the possibility, which is like why what we were talking about

01:56:10   is the issue with the Remarkable is, well, you can make notes on your Kindle books,

01:56:15   which is a thing you can't do with the Remarkable.

01:56:17   So that's the problem.

01:56:18   Yeah, so I'm very happy with it.

01:56:21   Even if they take a long time to add what I consider to be very basic features,

01:56:24   I'm still really happy with it as a product because it's a bigger screen Kindle

01:56:29   and that is something I have wanted for years.

01:56:32   Did you say that Remarkable made a keyboard case?

01:56:36   Oh, did they?

01:56:37   Yeah, in the ongoing arms race that we've got now in these types of devices.

01:56:42   It's called the Type Folio.

01:56:43   So you can now turn the Remarkable into a laptop, essentially.

01:56:50   Everything becomes everything else.

01:56:51   And they have an app on the iPhone that the notes that you type and draw will now go to.

01:56:57   I've got to hand it to Remarkable.

01:56:59   They have continued their development in such a way that

01:57:03   I would have thought the Kindle scribe was the end of their business.

01:57:06   Yeah, they're still holding on.

01:57:08   But the Type Folio came at just the right time for them, I think.

01:57:12   And I was like, that's smart.

01:57:13   Because now you've turned your reading ideation tablet into a small laptop,

01:57:18   like a really minimal laptop.

01:57:20   Again, I know this product isn't for me, just in general.

01:57:25   But again, I was like, they did it to me again.

01:57:29   The way that I have felt for years, where every time I look at Remarkable,

01:57:32   I'm like, huh, could I be that person?

01:57:35   And now they've added the keyboard to it.

01:57:37   I'm like, huh, could I be that person?

01:57:39   You know, they continue to get me.

01:57:42   So like, hats off to them.

01:57:43   Yeah, it is really intriguing as a product.

01:57:46   There's something about the idea of an e-ink computing device tablets

01:57:52   that is just very attractive.

01:57:53   It is maybe like the most aspirational technology product I've encountered, the Remarkable.

01:57:59   Like for years, I have been like, can I be that guy?

01:58:04   Right.

01:58:04   And the answer is always no.

01:58:06   But I keep asking the question.

01:58:09   Let's talk bags.

01:58:11   Okay, well, we're talking travel here is what we're actually talking, right, Mike?

01:58:16   Yeah, I mean, bags, travel.

01:58:18   We'll talk travel, but we'll talk about bags in the travel category.

01:58:21   Okay, I just think my life, Mike, especially in year of work,

01:58:25   very small circle that I exist inside of.

01:58:29   Like travel as a topic.

01:58:31   I'll have to hear from Mike about this.

01:58:33   So what bags are you using for travel?

01:58:35   This is where Bellroy comes back into the mix.

01:58:37   Big Bellroy.

01:58:39   I have been using the Bellroy Tokyo tote pack for a couple of years, I think.

01:58:44   This is my daily bag.

01:58:45   It is part backpack, part tote bag.

01:58:48   And that's what I like about it.

01:58:49   I like that flexibility.

01:58:51   I don't put a lot in this bag.

01:58:53   It's where my laptop goes, you know, taking back and forth from home to the studio.

01:58:57   And also anything I might need in that day, you know, so like if I'm bringing something

01:59:03   from home or to the studio, you know, it would be transported here.

01:59:07   And I have some basic essentials in here too, like an umbrella, you know, like little bits

01:59:11   and bobs like that.

01:59:13   So this is just like my daily bag.

01:59:14   I like that it's small, it's lightweight, and I like the flexibility of backpack and

01:59:19   tote bag.

01:59:19   Like in one.

01:59:21   What does that mean to you when you say that it's a tote bag as well?

01:59:24   I don't quite understand what you're getting at with that.

01:59:26   I can also just carry it in one hand.

01:59:28   Oh, okay.

01:59:28   All right.

01:59:29   I know that's not necessarily how people think of tote bags.

01:59:32   They think of them as over the shoulder.

01:59:33   Okay.

01:59:34   This is just like I can just hold this in one hand kind of briefcase style, I would

01:59:38   say.

01:59:38   Okay.

01:59:39   All right.

01:59:39   I get it.

01:59:39   Right.

01:59:40   As well as as a backpack.

01:59:42   And so I like that flexibility.

01:59:44   I find that to be comfortable.

01:59:45   This bag is really easy to pick up and put down.

01:59:48   Like, for example, if I was changing trains, right, I'm on the underground and down from

01:59:54   one chain to another, I would just hold it by the handles and not put it on my back.

01:59:58   Mm hmm.

01:59:59   Because I've like I've already taken it off.

02:00:01   I sat down and I'll just pick it up, walked in the next train, put it back down again,

02:00:04   that kind of thing.

02:00:05   So I like it for that.

02:00:06   It's flexible and it's carrying as well as what I can put in it.

02:00:11   Did you go with the the big version or the little version?

02:00:13   Oh, when I bought it, there was only one version.

02:00:16   Okay.

02:00:17   20 liters or 14 liters.

02:00:18   That's interesting.

02:00:19   I'm going to look into that.

02:00:20   I don't know what mine is.

02:00:23   How's the weight of it?

02:00:24   Oh, it's very light.

02:00:25   Hmm.

02:00:27   This is like a genuinely very nice just like daily bag.

02:00:30   It's very flexible.

02:00:31   It's got not too much, but just enough pockets.

02:00:34   And like the size, it being small and not having a ton of pockets is good because I

02:00:39   can't fill it with crap.

02:00:40   Right.

02:00:41   Yeah.

02:00:41   It really is constrained to just like what I'm carrying with me on that day.

02:00:45   I find myself intrigued because, as we mentioned earlier, like my everyday bag is the peak

02:00:50   design everyday bag.

02:00:52   Which I still really like.

02:00:53   I've used for years, but my biggest complaint with it has always been like, it's very heavy

02:00:59   because it's designed to protect camera equipment.

02:01:03   And it's like, I love that bag.

02:01:04   That bag is very clever.

02:01:05   There's a ton of features that I find hard to move away from, but it just kills me the

02:01:10   weight of it.

02:01:11   Always kind of in the market for something that could replace it.

02:01:14   And, uh, I don't know.

02:01:16   Maybe, maybe this is something worth trying.

02:01:17   Well, I bought another bag.

02:01:19   Oh, okay.

02:01:20   There's another one.

02:01:21   Another Bellroy bag.

02:01:22   Because what the Tokyo tote pack isn't is my travel bag.

02:01:25   It's not the bag that I'm going to take when I'm going on a trip.

02:01:28   It's just my daily bag.

02:01:30   I have and have used the peak design everyday backpack like you for years as my traveling

02:01:38   bag.

02:01:39   And my issue with the peak design backpack is its inflexibility.

02:01:46   I can see that.

02:01:47   I feel like this bag has a way it wants to be used and it doesn't like to be used in

02:01:52   any other way.

02:01:53   It has like a maximum amount of stuff in it, which is that you can put in it, which is

02:01:58   very obvious.

02:01:58   Like it's very rigid as a bag.

02:02:01   I was looking around at bags, which meant that I got every Instagram ad that I got was

02:02:06   a bag ad.

02:02:07   But that was genuinely helpful because I was looking for bags.

02:02:11   Right, right.

02:02:11   Yeah.

02:02:12   But Instagram knows.

02:02:13   And then Bellroy found me and advertised to me the Venture Ready pack.

02:02:18   And I bought one of these.

02:02:21   I have yet to use it on a trip.

02:02:23   I'm actually going on a trip next week, so I will be using it for the first time.

02:02:28   But this bag spoke to me in just the ways I like one.

02:02:31   Again, brand that I know and I like their stuff.

02:02:33   I like their thinking.

02:02:34   It is a new bag from them.

02:02:36   It's 26 liters.

02:02:38   So the capacity is actually a bit bigger than my everyday backpack.

02:02:43   That's big.

02:02:44   But the dimensions very similar because the everyday, like the Peak Design, is just a

02:02:50   big bag.

02:02:51   Right?

02:02:52   Like it's just very large where this one, I think dimension wise, is just like a little

02:02:58   bit taller, but every other dimension is like mostly the same.

02:03:02   Also, the bag doesn't look very big.

02:03:04   The Peak Design bag just looks big all the time.

02:03:06   This bag has like a lot of pockets, a lot of organization.

02:03:10   I like that it's just kind of like a big open bag.

02:03:13   That's kind of what I want.

02:03:14   Just like a big open pocket and I can just put stuff in it.

02:03:17   It sits flat, has a specified pocket for an air tag.

02:03:21   Perfect.

02:03:22   So yeah, I'm going to try it out.

02:03:23   But this is the bag that drew me in recently, and it's the one that I'm thinking is I'm

02:03:28   pretty confident is going to replace the Peak for me because I think I've kind of reached

02:03:31   my end with that bag.

02:03:32   It's interesting.

02:03:34   I wish there were more photos of like the different packings for the interior because

02:03:40   it looks like it has a bunch of like pockets on the side, but you're saying it's sort

02:03:45   of like a big hole.

02:03:46   It has like some pockets inside and it has a pocket on the top.

02:03:50   It has a couple of pockets on the top of the bag.

02:03:52   It doesn't have external side pockets like the Peak Design does, but it also has one

02:03:57   of those like privacy pockets that you could put like a passport in the back or whatever.

02:04:03   But I never really got on very well with the side pockets with the Peak Design.

02:04:06   I was always looking in the wrong side.

02:04:09   I didn't like those.

02:04:10   So I want all my pockets on the main compartment so it's easier for me to get to everything

02:04:14   because I would be like, open one side.

02:04:17   Oh, it's not in here.

02:04:18   Close it up.

02:04:18   Open the other side.

02:04:19   Oh, it's in here.

02:04:20   Like whatever it is I was looking for.

02:04:22   So just like the system of the bag is very good, but it didn't ultimately.

02:04:27   I don't think it really worked for me.

02:04:29   So yeah, I'm looking for something else.

02:04:31   This is where I have landed for now.

02:04:33   Hopefully it will be where I stay.

02:04:34   Yeah, backpacks are tricky because I think the thing for me that like, why do I still

02:04:40   use the everyday backpack is because like my problem with backpacks is sort of what

02:04:44   you just said that you wanted.

02:04:46   I find that they can just be a hole, right?

02:04:49   Like it's a big hole that you're carrying and the verticality of it feels like it's

02:04:54   easy to have stuff just get like lost in these bottom to top layers of like you've just

02:04:59   thrown all this stuff in.

02:05:00   And that to me was like the killer design feature of the everyday backpack is the ability

02:05:05   to open it up sideways.

02:05:07   So like I never use that backpack in portrait mode in a sense.

02:05:11   I was always throwing it on the table, opening up the side pockets and I felt like this is

02:05:16   how I want to experience the backpack.

02:05:18   I want the least depth and the most spread so everything is accessible to me.

02:05:23   And that's like, that's what I really love about that bag.

02:05:26   And I just, I haven't seen anyone else do that.

02:05:29   I think this is intriguing because of how deep the top opens so like you can, it seems

02:05:34   like you can really pull it apart.

02:05:36   That's what I like, yeah.

02:05:37   Yeah, which might be part of it, but it does still look like it's functionally a hole

02:05:43   that you're carrying, which has always been my frustration with backpacks.

02:05:47   Yep, it's hard.

02:05:49   Backpack stuff is really, really hard.

02:05:51   Backpacks are one of these things we've said before, like some markets are functionally

02:05:55   infinite in size because everybody wants different things and backpacks feel like one of

02:05:59   those markets.

02:06:00   Like there can never be enough backpack companies for the things that people want out of their

02:06:05   backpacks.

02:06:05   It's just like a market that can never be associated.

02:06:09   I know we've been recording for a long time, but I am not letting this episode end unless

02:06:14   I can mention dog stuff.

02:06:16   Who would try and stop you?

02:06:17   I feel like you might try to stop me for mentioning dog stuff.

02:06:20   You didn't seem very warm to it at the beginning.

02:06:22   I don't have a ton to add when it comes to dog stuff.

02:06:25   Do you not have a lot of dog hardware recommendations, Mike?

02:06:29   Not yet.

02:06:29   Who knows?

02:06:30   If we're doing this as a tradition for long enough, maybe I will have dog stuff, but right

02:06:34   now no dog stuff.

02:06:35   Okay, I will look forward to that day.

02:06:37   But yes, so as a household that has a rotating crew of visiting dogs, we've had the opportunity

02:06:44   to try out a bunch of dog stuff.

02:06:47   So number one thing, if you have a dog, a thing that you probably have not thought very much

02:06:52   about is the dog collar.

02:06:54   It just seems like, "Oh, the dog collar."

02:06:56   It's just like how dogs are.

02:06:58   I'm here to tell you, no.

02:07:00   If you have a dog, you must get a dog harness.

02:07:04   Don't have a collar around the neck?

02:07:07   Have one of these like harnesses that goes across the chest anytime you take them out

02:07:13   for a walk.

02:07:14   The key thing here is like harnesses are so important for dogs.

02:07:18   If they try to go like chase after something, right, you don't have that horrible moment

02:07:23   where like your dog runs for a squirrel and it chokes itself.

02:07:26   If you have an actual harness on the dog, you can like control them much better and

02:07:31   in like a way more safe range.

02:07:33   I don't want to get into the whole thing, but there are so many negative knock-on effects

02:07:39   from having a collar on a dog that you can just avoid with a harness.

02:07:44   They can get all kinds of like nerve damage from the collars.

02:07:47   It's no good.

02:07:48   So I don't know like globally a company to recommend, but here in the UK, my wife and

02:07:55   I, we use a company called Fleece Dog Harnesses.

02:07:58   They have a bunch of great harnesses and there's another one called Cozy Dogs.

02:08:02   Both of these are companies that make like really nice, really soft harnesses that are

02:08:07   comfortable for the dog and also better for you as the person who is actually walking

02:08:13   the dog around.

02:08:14   I feel like I see Julius Canine everywhere.

02:08:18   Uh, which one is that?

02:08:20   And it's just like one of the weirdest like brand names that-

02:08:24   Oh, yes, I know this one.

02:08:26   Yeah, the Julius Canine branding is very funny.

02:08:30   I don't understand it.

02:08:31   Who's Julius?

02:08:32   I don't know.

02:08:32   Don't get me wrong.

02:08:33   If you have a Julius Canine harness, I think that's like a million times better than

02:08:37   a collar like anything is.

02:08:38   Looking into it, we're generally like in favor of V-shaped harnesses.

02:08:43   So they're harnesses that like come down sort of over the shoulders and then go under

02:08:48   the chest.

02:08:49   The key thing if like if you're looking at a harness on your dog is when you pull, you

02:08:54   just want to make sure that the pressure is not near the neck.

02:08:59   The pressure is actually like on the chest bone, right?

02:09:02   On like the hard part of the dog.

02:09:04   And I think the Julius Collars can ride a little high depending on how you've actually fit

02:09:09   them because they have a strap that goes across and it's like if that strap is perfectly

02:09:13   aligned, it's no problem, but it can often like ride up.

02:09:17   I still say like any harness is basically better than any collar for taking a dog out

02:09:21   for a walk.

02:09:22   Yeah, it also just seems like I don't know enough so like I ain't judging, but collars

02:09:28   seems so barbaric in a way that like if the dog was to run and you had to pull the dog

02:09:34   back and it's pulled back by the neck.

02:09:36   There's just something about that that doesn't look right to me.

02:09:39   Like many things in life, you come up with the first solution.

02:09:43   Yeah.

02:09:43   Right?

02:09:43   So like you're domesticating dogs.

02:09:45   What are you going to do?

02:09:46   Well, you have to put a rope around its neck.

02:09:48   That's literally like that's the only thing that you can do and then you evolve that over

02:09:51   time.

02:09:52   And I also understand the convenience, right?

02:09:53   The dog has already got the collar on and you just clip the lead on the collar and you're

02:09:56   good to go.

02:09:57   Well, like with the harness, you've got to like dress the dog every single time.

02:10:01   Yes, there is a little bit of like dog dressing with the harness for sure.

02:10:04   Yeah, because like the dog isn't wearing the harness around the house, right?

02:10:08   Big fashion dog.

02:10:09   It's a bit of formal wear for just being around the home.

02:10:12   With our visiting dogs, what we often do is we just if they come with a collar, we just

02:10:15   take the collar off and put all of their identifying information on the harness.

02:10:20   And so it's like the harness is actually the only thing that they wear when they go outside.

02:10:23   Yeah.

02:10:23   Again, I just like I mentioned it because I think it's a thing a lot of dog owners sort

02:10:26   of just don't really think about and that like that totally makes sense.

02:10:30   There's a million things in the world.

02:10:32   You don't really think about it, but if like I have to if I could like make a single change

02:10:37   for all dog owners, this would be the change is walk them on a harness.

02:10:41   The second big change that I would make is I have a I have a dog food brand recommendation.

02:10:48   So there's a company in the-

02:10:49   You are stretching this now.

02:10:51   I will tell you.

02:10:53   You are stretching.

02:10:56   Okay, I'm gonna skip that one actually.

02:10:57   No, you can make it.

02:10:58   You can make it.

02:10:59   I'll just say I'll just say it really quick.

02:11:00   You know, you should give your dog some nice food.

02:11:03   Don't just feed your dog kibble for their whole life.

02:11:06   So there's a company that we really like called Different Dog.

02:11:09   They make like fancy dog food. There's going to be something like this in the US.

02:11:13   You should give dogs food you could at least conceivably eat.

02:11:19   That's my recommendation there.

02:11:21   You don't want to have something that you wouldn't want to be the only thing that you eat for your whole life.

02:11:25   Question.

02:11:26   Yeah.

02:11:26   Have you eaten the food?

02:11:28   So I haven't eaten the food.

02:11:29   Okay.

02:11:30   But my wife has a suspicious number of times said to me, "You know, you could eat this."

02:11:37   I'm going away this weekend.

02:11:39   By the way, you could eat the dog food.

02:11:42   It's always been like the tone that I get from this is a little bit of like, my life would be a lot easier.

02:11:56   Just try it.

02:12:01   You never know.

02:12:03   You can't just eat it.

02:12:04   You never know.

02:12:07   I think the next sentence is usually something like, she goes, "It's human grade."

02:12:11   Which is also like, if you go into a restaurant and they're like, "This food is human grade."

02:12:15   It's a bit like, "Yeah, I'd hope so."

02:12:17   I'm looking at the pictures, Gray, and someone could give me this and I don't know if I'd be mad.

02:12:26   I'll let you try it the next time you come over.

02:12:27   No, I'm good.

02:12:28   That's incredible.

02:12:30   Oh my God.

02:12:35   So here is a human/dog recommendation.

02:12:39   Hardware wise, I guess this is kind of health wise.

02:12:42   I recommend that everyone should try a electric toothbrush.

02:12:46   I've got a Sonicare electric toothbrush for myself.

02:12:50   This again is one of these things.

02:12:51   It's like the water rower.

02:12:53   You get an electric toothbrush, you think it's a gimmick, you try it, and then you can never go back to a manual toothbrush.

02:13:00   Do you have an electric toothbrush?

02:13:01   Yes, I have the Sonicare as well.

02:13:03   Do you have the USB-C charging one?

02:13:05   Is that the one?

02:13:06   I don't have the USB-C one.

02:13:09   I have the one that has the cable in the case.

02:13:12   Oh, okay.

02:13:14   Yeah, one of the case charging ones.

02:13:17   I was horrified at the price of the USB-C one when it's basically the same toothbrush.

02:13:23   They just put a USB-C port in the case.

02:13:27   So I just got the one that had the USB-A port.

02:13:30   I think there was another feature as well that the USB-C one had that I didn't want.

02:13:35   And so I went with the one that has the USB-A built into the case.

02:13:39   Right, okay.

02:13:41   Yeah, yeah.

02:13:42   Sonicare was totally taking advantage of people like me who are like one device away from a pure USB-C travel life.

02:13:50   And I was like, you know what?

02:13:51   No, I'm totally going to do that.

02:13:53   Like I'll buy this just to get all of this done.

02:13:55   Everyone should brush their teeth, including dogs.

02:13:58   So you can get electric dog toothbrushes.

02:14:01   This is a thing that exists and it is a thing that we use because you want to keep dog's teeth clean.

02:14:08   So there's a company called Emi-Pet which makes a basic dog tooth care set and includes an electric toothbrush.

02:14:16   You use an electric toothbrush, let your dog use an electric toothbrush.

02:14:19   Incredible.

02:14:20   Okay, and then the very last thing that I'll mention.

02:14:22   Oh my god, there's more dog stuff?

02:14:23   There's one last one. This is the last one, I promise, right?

02:14:25   You have more dog stuff than you had for like entertainment stuff.

02:14:29   Last one I'll mention is again, a thing that I thought was kind of ridiculous at first,

02:14:34   but I've totally changed my mind on it, is what are called like slow feeder bowls.

02:14:41   So these are bowls that are designed to slow down the dog while eating.

02:14:48   And so it comes in this hexagonal pattern.

02:14:52   And so the idea is like, as you are dishing out your human grade dog food,

02:14:57   which you may or may not have warmed up in the microwave ahead of time,

02:15:01   you can spread it out in these little like hexagon pockets in the dog bowl.

02:15:05   And this basically helps prevent the thing that many dogs do,

02:15:09   which is when you put the food in front of them,

02:15:11   they just wolf it down in a single bite in seconds.

02:15:15   This like slows them down a little bit while they're eating.

02:15:17   I genuinely think it is better for them.

02:15:20   It's like a better experience for them.

02:15:22   I was like not very sold on this originally,

02:15:24   but I've completely changed my mind on this.

02:15:26   Like slow feeder bowls, it's totally the way to go.

02:15:29   - I have to ask what came first for you?

02:15:31   The need for the bowl or the fact that this is a hexagon bowl?

02:15:35   Which for you, which one came first?

02:15:39   - Mike, it's a hexagon because hexagons are a perfect pattern

02:15:44   for this exact kind of problem.

02:15:46   Circles wouldn't work very well.

02:15:48   Squares wouldn't work very well.

02:15:50   Triangles obviously would be terrible, they're too small.

02:15:53   There's very few things which you can uniformly use to tile a surface

02:15:56   and hexagons are the best of guns for that.

02:15:59   - And for everything else.

02:16:00   - Well, I mean, not everything.

02:16:02   - Let's not be crazy.

02:16:04   - Right.

02:16:05   Okay.

02:16:05   And that's why I promise that's it for dog stuff for today.

02:16:09   - Lightning round?

02:16:11   - Lightning round.

02:16:11   - Lightning round.

02:16:12   What would it be if a state of the something about a lightning round?

02:16:15   - You need a lightning round for random extra things.

02:16:18   - Yeah.

02:16:18   - Including the Folsom knife by James Brand.

02:16:22   I love this knife.

02:16:24   I use it for packages, which is maybe a little more than is needed for a package.

02:16:30   - Oh, come on.

02:16:30   You just want to feel cool when you're opening a package with this knife.

02:16:34   - Good looking, good feeling knife.

02:16:36   Comes in a bunch of finishes and colors.

02:16:38   I love this knife.

02:16:40   I have two of them.

02:16:42   - What do you...

02:16:43   - Because I bought one because that was the one that I had.

02:16:46   And then, do you know Aaron Draplin?

02:16:48   - No.

02:16:49   - The designer.

02:16:49   He is very famous designer.

02:16:52   He's one of the people behind Field Notes.

02:16:54   I love his design style.

02:16:57   He makes just really great stuff.

02:16:58   He did a collaboration with them and made an orange and black one.

02:17:01   And I got that because it was just so freaking cool.

02:17:04   So I have one at home, one at the studio.

02:17:06   This company, James Brand, make really nice products in general.

02:17:09   And I am a big fan of this knife.

02:17:12   It's one of those things that like I've had it for a number of years now.

02:17:16   And it's just like a product that is very well made.

02:17:19   It works very well and it brings me joy to use.

02:17:21   - Do you keep it as a pocket knife or just have it around the house?

02:17:24   - It stays on my desk.

02:17:26   - The hole, is that for just grabbing it when you open it up?

02:17:29   Or does that serve a different function?

02:17:30   - The hole in the blade.

02:17:32   - Yeah.

02:17:32   - Yes, that is to help you open it.

02:17:34   - Ah, okay.

02:17:34   So that's just for grabbing it.

02:17:35   - Yeah.

02:17:35   - It looks great.

02:17:37   It's a really good looking knife.

02:17:38   - Yeah.

02:17:38   They make really good stuff.

02:17:39   If you are looking for a nice knife, James Brand make really, really good products.

02:17:45   - I think as a nice mirror for that, I'm going to have a Hawaii holdover product.

02:17:50   When I was in Hawaii and terrified of the dark, I asked the internet to help me with flashlights.

02:17:56   And I found just a fantastic little flashlight.

02:18:01   It's called the Nightcore TM-10K flashlight.

02:18:06   I brought it back.

02:18:06   I keep it in my closet.

02:18:07   It's one of those things where like, yes, you have a flashlight on your phone,

02:18:11   but every once in a while you need a flashlight that can really do the job.

02:18:15   - Oh, it's big.

02:18:16   - It's not as big as you think it is.

02:18:17   It's like, it fits in your hand.

02:18:18   - Oh no, I looked at the pictures and thought it was a size.

02:18:21   And then they had a picture of it in someone's hand.

02:18:23   And that's when I thought it looked big.

02:18:24   - Right.

02:18:24   Okay.

02:18:25   Yeah, yeah.

02:18:25   It's not like a keychain flashlight.

02:18:27   It's a flashlight you would leave somewhere.

02:18:29   Every once in a while, it's just very useful.

02:18:32   And it is insane.

02:18:34   Like how it can turn the night to day.

02:18:37   It's amazing.

02:18:38   - As it very helpful has written on it, 10,000 lumens.

02:18:43   - Yeah, yeah.

02:18:44   - With two exclamation marks.

02:18:46   Why would you do that?

02:18:50   That's so strange.

02:18:51   - Well, because 10,000 lumens is a lot of lumens.

02:18:53   - But why do they need to put it on the thing with two exclamation marks?

02:18:57   - Because it's a lot of lumens.

02:18:59   I don't understand what your problem is with these two exclamation marks.

02:19:01   - That is so funny.

02:19:02   - The thing that to me is the funniest about it is it is insanely bright under normal operation,

02:19:08   but it has an- it basically has a like- it feels like it's out of a movie.

02:19:11   There's like an overheat mode, so you can press and hold a button and it will go as bright as it can

02:19:19   until the moment it's about to burn itself out from the heat that it generates.

02:19:23   - Jeez.

02:19:24   - But when you do that, it is incredible.

02:19:26   So yeah, it is the most amount of light in the smallest amount of package.

02:19:32   Love it.

02:19:32   - I want to recommend my favorite slippers.

02:19:34   - Oh, okay.

02:19:36   - Mahabis.

02:19:37   - You know, I was just in the market for some like house shoes.

02:19:41   - Yeah, I use these as house shoes.

02:19:44   I specifically wear the curve brand.

02:19:47   - Okay.

02:19:48   - Mahabis, it's kind of like a- they have rubber on the sole.

02:19:51   They have like a rubber sole so you could wear them outside and inside.

02:19:55   Like if you had to leave the house to get something and come back in or whatever.

02:19:58   - Yeah, that's what I'm looking for.

02:19:59   - I owned the classic for a while, but I found that I was wearing the outside toe down.

02:20:05   And I think it's because when I'm here at the studio, the way I kind of sit,

02:20:09   I sometimes will like kind of kick the ground a little bit.

02:20:11   I don't know why I do this.

02:20:12   It's just a thing that I do.

02:20:14   And so I was wearing the fronts away, but the curve have the rubber go over the toe as well.

02:20:19   I find it to be very comfortable and you can- what I like about them specifically is they

02:20:25   have this kind of like elasticy part on the back.

02:20:28   So you can choose to either step into it like a slip-on and wear them like slip-ons.

02:20:33   And that kind of rubber area goes down or you can then pull it up over the back.

02:20:38   If you were say walking outside and you didn't want your shoes to fly off.

02:20:41   - Oh nice.

02:20:42   That's a nice little feature.

02:20:43   Yeah.

02:20:43   - Yeah.

02:20:44   I've had- I have these at home.

02:20:46   When something is- this is how I can tell that I love something.

02:20:50   I've just realized it now.

02:20:51   When I have it at home and at the studio.

02:20:55   - Yeah, that's a good metric for it.

02:20:57   - And I have a pair of these here and there.

02:20:59   So that's like- that's how I know that like something has become important enough in my life

02:21:03   that I need it in the two places that I'm in.

02:21:05   - Nice.

02:21:06   All right.

02:21:07   I'm totally gonna pick up a pair and give them a try.

02:21:09   Next I'm gonna recommend the Theragun.

02:21:12   Have you tried a Theragun, Mike?

02:21:15   - Yeah, I have the Theragun Mini.

02:21:16   I want the proper one.

02:21:18   We just haven't done it yet, but we've been meaning to get one for a while.

02:21:21   - Yeah, this is- for anyone who doesn't know, I think this falls into the category of like-

02:21:26   I'm gonna say it is a massager, but that's not exactly right.

02:21:30   I would sell the Theragun as it is a jackhammer for your muscles is what it really is.

02:21:35   - And also here's what I'll say about the Theragun.

02:21:38   You may have seen it online.

02:21:39   I saw it on Instagram ads for a while and I'm like, "That is BS.

02:21:42   That thing is- doesn't work."

02:21:44   That's what was my first thought.

02:21:46   It's like there's no way that I believe that this actually does any difference.

02:21:50   Huge difference.

02:21:51   And also feels great.

02:21:53   - Yeah.

02:21:54   This was a piece of equipment that also became critically important when I started exercising more.

02:22:00   It's really like, "Oh, this is actually a thing I need to try to help like smooth-

02:22:04   not to smooth out, but like you need to jackhammer your muscles sometimes,

02:22:07   like when you've exerted them."

02:22:09   So like on like quadriceps in particular, I find like, "Ooh, if I've had a hard leg exercise,

02:22:14   like using this really minimizes soreness the next day."

02:22:19   But in particular, like I've kind of mentioned a couple times over the years,

02:22:23   like I have a problem where I have some of my back muscles will spasm and lock

02:22:29   in what I can only describe as in my ability to remember.

02:22:33   I can't remember anything more painful than when this happens on occasion.

02:22:37   And the Theragun as a jackhammer for muscles is the- is like a thing that can really take that

02:22:46   from impossibly painful down to like tolerable and I can move again.

02:22:51   So this is a thing that has become an absolutely critical piece of like travel kit for me,

02:22:58   is I got the mini version that you have and it's like,

02:23:01   I will not go anywhere without that thing.

02:23:04   So yeah, I mentioned here again, because like, just like you said,

02:23:07   I think a lot of people can see it and it looks like a kind of weird gimmick,

02:23:11   but it's really good if you have any kind of muscle problems or if you exercise,

02:23:15   you should totally look into one.

02:23:17   - And I've tried the like the big one, the Elite, and that thing is amazing.

02:23:22   - Yeah, that one is a real jackhammer.

02:23:24   - Sonos Era 100.

02:23:26   - Okay.

02:23:27   - I am a big Sonos fan.

02:23:29   It's one of the things that I've been adding to my home as I'm like kind of changing what I want

02:23:35   in the new home and how it operates and we have more music playing in the house than we had before.

02:23:39   And I originally bought the Sonos One speakers and they are like, they were very good.

02:23:45   I liked them a lot.

02:23:46   One thing I didn't really know, and it didn't bother me,

02:23:48   but I just didn't know that the Sonos One is a mono speaker and the Sonos Era 100 is a stereo speaker.

02:23:56   And I was interested in the Era 100 because I wanted to get more speakers than we had.

02:24:03   I ideally wanted to have one in every room in the house.

02:24:06   And we had a couple of rooms that were free and I was like, oh, I'll deal with this later on.

02:24:10   And when the Era 100 came out, I bought a pair of these to go where we play music the most,

02:24:15   which is one in the kitchen and one in Adina's office at home.

02:24:19   And the Era 100 is a very well thought out product because as well as it being just a Sonos speaker,

02:24:25   it also has Bluetooth and the line in.

02:24:27   So it can be used in so many environments.

02:24:31   You can use it as a Bluetooth speaker.

02:24:33   You can use it with the Sonos app.

02:24:34   You can use AirPlay on it.

02:24:36   You could also plug in a record player straight into this thing and music from it if you wanted to.

02:24:40   Have you done that, Mike?

02:24:41   I bought a Sonos Play 5 for our record player before the Era 100 came out.

02:24:46   And it's one of their bigger ones.

02:24:48   But what's really great about Sonos with a record player is you can put the music on the record

02:24:54   player and play it everywhere in your home where there's a Sonos.

02:24:57   Oh.

02:24:57   And that's the same for any line in.

02:25:00   Like you are lining it into the Sonos system.

02:25:04   System, right.

02:25:05   Not that particular speaker.

02:25:06   Oh, interesting.

02:25:07   I hadn't heard of it that way.

02:25:07   Very clever.

02:25:08   I really love Sonos.

02:25:10   Like I'm very happy with this kind of product in general.

02:25:14   But the Era 100 gave me something I have truly never experienced in technology before,

02:25:19   where I did a side by side comparison and was blown away by the results.

02:25:24   Like I had the Sonos 1 and the Era 100 next to each other.

02:25:28   And I was playing the same piece of music.

02:25:30   I played it on one and then carried it on on the other one.

02:25:33   And the difference was obscene in how much better it sounded.

02:25:38   And so, yeah, I really love Sonos products.

02:25:41   And I think the Era 100 is like a great starting point if you want to consider a better home

02:25:49   audio system.

02:25:50   In the UK, it's £249.

02:25:51   And I think for a speaker of this quality, that is very fairly priced.

02:25:56   OK, my last lightning round recommendation, the Ember Mug and Cup.

02:26:04   So Ember is a company that makes cups that will heat your beverage to a desired temperature.

02:26:13   And they also make a travel thermos, which does the same thing.

02:26:18   So both the cup and the mug, they have a little battery in them and you put your beverage

02:26:23   in.

02:26:24   Once on your phone, you can like set the temperature that you want things to be at.

02:26:29   And then the battery will do its best to keep the temperature of your beverage at your desired

02:26:35   temperature.

02:26:35   And it has a little coaster that it uses to charge.

02:26:38   Oh, man, I just went to their website.

02:26:40   And it's so smart.

02:26:41   And I didn't know about this.

02:26:43   I think it might be in America only at the moment.

02:26:44   They make a baby bottle.

02:26:46   Oh, wow.

02:26:47   That's great.

02:26:48   I didn't know that.

02:26:49   That's such a good idea.

02:26:50   That's very clever.

02:26:52   Yeah, anyway.

02:26:55   Yeah, I think that's a new one.

02:26:56   Yeah.

02:26:57   The thing about this is, in some sense, it's like the opposite of what I was saying before

02:27:02   with the bike where it's like, oh, I have a big quality of life improvement from this

02:27:05   really expensive product.

02:27:07   Now, an Ember Cup is more expensive than a cup, right?

02:27:12   But I think for single products, in terms of quality of life improvement per dollar,

02:27:23   per use, the Ember Mug has to be one of the best expenditures of money I've ever made.

02:27:29   It's like, I am drinking coffee all the time.

02:27:32   And having it just always be nice and hot is such a luxury.

02:27:40   So I am surprised at how much I like this.

02:27:43   I had tried before some of these little like heating pads for coffee cups.

02:27:49   And it's like, and it worked fine.

02:27:50   But the difference with the mug is like the ability to keep it at a precise temperature

02:27:56   is really great.

02:27:57   I know you would also appreciate not feeling like a constant fire hazard on my desk, like

02:28:03   a hot little plate is.

02:28:05   Yeah.

02:28:05   It's very nice.

02:28:07   This is better than that for sure.

02:28:09   Yes.

02:28:10   That was part of the reason I got the mug in the first place.

02:28:13   That can like scorch the liquid too, right?

02:28:16   Like if it's just like constant heat, like what the Ember is doing is it's taking it

02:28:19   to a temperature level.

02:28:21   Yes.

02:28:22   It's not just constantly heating it, which is a thing that depending on how picky you

02:28:27   are about your coffee, the constant heat can make it go bitter faster.

02:28:30   Whereas like the Ember trying to maintain a temperature is different from just, I have

02:28:35   set it on a tiny stove, which is on my desk to keep it warm.

02:28:39   And the real killer thing for me has been the mug version, because now that I'm spending

02:28:44   most of my mornings in the basement to write, it's like, well, I don't have coffee making

02:28:51   equipment down there.

02:28:52   And so I just like fill up the mug, bring it downstairs.

02:28:56   I've got one of the little charging discs for it there.

02:28:59   And so this way it's like all morning while I'm working in the basement, I have nice and

02:29:05   warm coffee in a way that like the thing that's really nice about it, as opposed to like,

02:29:10   why don't you just get a thermos is a thermos can keep the coffee too hot, right?

02:29:14   Like I make the coffee right in the morning and then put it in a regular thermos and then

02:29:18   it's too hot most of the time.

02:29:19   So it's like that perfect temperature.

02:29:21   So nice.

02:29:22   I really love it.

02:29:23   It's again, it's a thing that seems like a frivolous purchase, but it hits like high

02:29:29   frequency in my life.

02:29:30   Nice like quality of life increase, divide that by the dollar spent and it's a complete

02:29:35   no brainer purchase.

02:29:37   Love it.

02:29:37   I will finish off with another liquid focused purchase.

02:29:41   Oh, good.

02:29:42   The Lark picture, L A R Q.

02:29:44   So I had a Brita filter picture and was unhappy with it for two reasons.

02:29:54   One was the, like you said, it's like filtered water, right?

02:29:58   And I mean, one thing is I'd seen that they can get moldy, the filter area, which isn't

02:30:05   great, but also it frustrated me that when you would put the filter into the picture,

02:30:11   you'd press the little button on the LCD screen and it just ticks down on a timer.

02:30:15   But that timer doesn't mean anything except time.

02:30:20   And then it's like the time's up replace the water.

02:30:23   And it's like, you've got no concept of how much water I've put through the system.

02:30:28   Hmm.

02:30:29   Like if I go away for two weeks, that's two weeks off of the timer, even though I've

02:30:37   not actually used the filter for filtering the water.

02:30:41   So I was looking around and found Lark and I was aware of Lark because they made a, they

02:30:48   make a bottle, like a water bottle that has a UV light inside of it for killing bacteria.

02:30:54   And they make a picture that has that.

02:30:58   So that was part one.

02:30:59   So like the idea of there being the potential for less bacteria buildup inside of the picture.

02:31:06   And so it filters the water with a UV light as it passes through.

02:31:10   And then also does a self-cleaning with the UV light, which is great.

02:31:14   So obviously you have to clean the picture, but I like the idea of the UV light there

02:31:21   to kill off bacteria.

02:31:22   But my main reason for this is it has an app, which you can connect with Bluetooth to the

02:31:28   picture is very simple, but it tracks the amount of water that passes through the filter

02:31:33   and tells you to replace the filter once the amount of water has passed rather than it

02:31:37   being on a fixed timer.

02:31:38   That's, that's, I've got one of those Brita filters as well.

02:31:41   And I think you've, you've kind of nailed my vague unease with them.

02:31:50   This is one of those areas where I just thought like, oh, this is just what it is.

02:31:53   This is better than nothing, but I don't really like it.

02:31:55   And I don't have very specific complaints, but yeah, I feel like you've just addressed

02:32:00   some of my, like, I don't like this about the Brita filter thing, like pressing this

02:32:04   button on top.

02:32:05   It's never felt good.

02:32:06   Like I know you're just a timer counting down.

02:32:08   I don't like that at all.

02:32:09   So yeah, this, this looks really good.

02:32:11   I think I'm going to give this a try.

02:32:12   Yeah.

02:32:12   I like the filter too.

02:32:13   Like it does a good job.

02:32:15   The battery in the, in the UV thing lasts a while.

02:32:18   Like I think it's good.

02:32:19   And you know, and if you want to, it gives you stats about how much water you've drunk.

02:32:24   You know, like you can, you can see that in the app.

02:32:26   It's like, it knows how much has passed through and also been poured out.

02:32:29   So, and the picture is good.

02:32:31   Like overall, I'm very happy with it.

02:32:33   You know, like with all of these things, you then buying the filters from them, but they

02:32:39   do them on a subscription and you know, it's easy enough.

02:32:42   So I've been happy.

02:32:43   I've been very happy actually with this, with this product.

02:32:45   It's a good one.

02:32:46   It's a good addition.

02:32:47   Yeah, this is great.

02:32:48   I'll give it a try.

02:32:49   Oh, and before we end, I forgot to mention when you get that dog harness, get it with

02:32:53   a spot for an air tag.