238: TZ Discussion – Goodbye, Top Gun. Hello, Skynet!

Justin and Jason discuss Justin’s two-week work trip to Chicago, Sebastien Arnaud’s recent visit to Pasadena, the tradeoffs of using a custom/personal framework vs a popular open-source framework, how Justin hired listener Jeremy Logan to work with Digedu, balancing feature development with stability work, why Justin is moving from Rackspace to AWS in order to avoid the single point of failure problem, how he was unable to sell Pluggio on Flippa and how he’s going to try selling it through a broker, the summer Catalyst sessions and the effort to get Mindstorm robots to communicate with one another using Bluetooth, NCSS – the five-week online programming competition out of the University of Sydney, how Jason has been bribing his 8-year old son Colby with movies and ice cream to complete all of the DragonBox 12+ levels, Jason’s thoughts on how you might extend the Dragonbox model to other STEM subjects such as electronics and physics, the potential for Google Glass to usher in a ‘little brother’ futureand Jason Calacanis’ recent screed on the subject, how the Man of Steel is more of a science fiction movie than a superhero movie, how the 5D ‘superman memory’ crystal can store 360 TB/disk, is stable up to 1000 degrees celsius and lasts a million years, futuristic user interfaces, the science behind controlling a quadcopter with a brain-computer interface, the show Through the Wormhole, the Instructible for creating an EEG cap, how theSpaceX Grasshopper rocket completed a 325m vertical landing, the speculation around Elon Musk’s Hyperloop concepthow a self-flying Navy drone successfully landed on an aircraft carrier, the US government’s strategy for minimizing revelations about the NSA’s unconstitutional spying, Snowden’s deadman switch, the the fact that the NSA is basically collecting everything and that the FISA court is a complete jokeDARPA’s real-world terminator,how an Oklahoma City hospital’s posting of surgery prices online is creating a bidding warPHP’s comeback and why Laravel is going to become the Rails of PHP, and Boom, the volume booster for the Mac.

  1. Dammit! You guys only seem to release episodes AFTER I head for work so I can’t listen for a full day!

    Wow… that’s a first world problem. Speaking of visits to Pasadena, I may be around there area next year April… would be delighted to buy you guys dinner if you are keen.

  2. Justin says:

    @Ben – We never say no to a dinner, ask Phillippe Monnet!

  3. Cool. Ill work out some dates and email you guys. No pressure, I can understand not wanting to see my ugly mug.

  4. Jason says:

    @Ben Boyter – That sounds great. Although, April is a long way off, so Justin may have already moved to some random place by then. 😉

  5. He truly is living the life. A grey nomad before retirement. 🙂 I will keep that in mind and try to have firm dates for you in a week or so.

  6. Andrea says:

    @Ben – Are you going to MicroConf 2014?

  7. MIke says:

    Google will defiantly release a low cost version of google glass with out a camera. That would solve some issues

  8. @Andrea Alas no… passing though to Panama to see the inlaws for two weeks, with a planned week layover in LA.

  9. Clyde says:

    Hi Guys,

    I started listening to your podcast because of an interview show that you did with Aamir Salihefendic (Todoist). Then I tried a couple of the interview shows until such time I was hooked. At first, I only waited for interview shows but I eventually preferred your discussion shows later on.

    Here’s a suggestion to gain new listeners:Create a page for interview shows with notable entrepreneurs and developers. I’d think that your interviewees have a following of their own who occasionally search for interviews. This page should allow easy discovery of great old interviews. This can be their gateway episodes on the long saga that is the Techzing podcast. Pictures of your interviewee would help as well. (I’m thinking of the same format format from Dorm Room Tycoon podcast)


  10. Jason says:

    @Clyde – Yeah, I like it! That’s a great idea.

  11. Mark says:

    Hello Justin. I’ve been listening to some of your earlier podcasts and heard your conversation with Jason about Tweet Board. I was very surprised to hear you have this app as you haven’t mentioned it since episode 150.

    To me, Tweet Board seems to be a brilliant marketing tool to funnel pre-qualified prospects to Pluggio.

    Why haven’t we heard more about this app and its impact on Pluggio subscriptions? Pluggio seems to have a lot potential. All it needs is some marketing TLC.

    Anyway, it would be great hear how Tweet Board affected Pluggio sales.

    Thanks for the great show.

  12. Justin says:

    @Mark – Thanks so much for the kind words. Apart from anything else it doesn’t work anymore since twitter released their API 1.1. I’m not sure if I can make it work with API 1.1 but I don’t seem to have the time to do that just yet!

  13. Justin says:

    @Mark – Re: sales. Strangely it had minimal impact even at it’s busiest time. Perhaps 1-2 sales a week.

  14. Mark says:

    Jason, I second Clyde’s suggestion. Though I came to your podcast from Startups For The Rest Of Us, it was the interviews that initially got me coming back. Now I listen because I admire Justin for his ability to tolerate your constant contrarianism:-)

    Anyway, I’ve heard you and Justin mention how the show seems to be stuck at around 2000 listeners, however, you’re not making any significant changes. Do something different to get a new result. Sound familiar?

    Besides Clyde’s suggestion, other ideas that might help to get you off the 2000 subscriber plateau are:
    1. Cut the length of the show to 45 minutes to an hour. I find my self listening to a single episode over several days. It took a while for you guys to grow on me and if the first episodes I heard hadn’t been very interesting interviews, I probably wouldn’t have returned for the 90 minute conversational shows.
    2. Publish weekly and consistently. If you had a shorter show you might be able to meet a more predictable schedule. We listeners like to know when our shows will be available.

    Even if you don’t change anything, I’ll still look forward to every episode. I like the dichotomy; You guys are like James Kirk and Spock. (Jason, I know I don’t have to tell you which character is your analog.)

    Great show. Thanks for taking the time to discuss interesting topics.

  15. Hi,

    I’ve been a longtime silent listener, but I can’t remember how I found your podcast 🙂 I thought I would break my habit and not just discuss things mentioned in your show offline with people you don’t know, but with you too. So without further ado…

    With regards to privacy implications of google glass, and how it effects people’s behavior, it brought back memories of the the contract for my first job – learning that the company can read all my company emails. It was quite a shock (aren’t we all a little naive initially?). However, it doesn’t seem to bother many people, as it can be observed it from various corporate scandals – it’s amazing what people would put into their corporate emails. I wonder whether Google Glass would also be gotten used to and forgotten about…

    Also, I might be missing something in the FISA court issue – not being form the US and having legal knowledge only from police procedural/detective novels/movies, I don’t understand the issue of the one sided representation, i.e.: that there is only the requester of the surveillance (NSA) and the FISA judge who either authorizes or rejects request. Isn’t this the standard procedure for the “regular” search warrants/wiretap requests, that the police makes its case, submits it to a judge, who then decides whether to authorize it? I totally understand the problems of other aspects (accountability and legitimacy (in the popular, not legal sense) of the judges, not being elected and reelected by the citizens, but appointed by a single person, etc.), but I would appreciate if one of you could clarify this.

    Cheers and thanks for the shows,


  16. @Clyde, see the interviews and guests pages on the TechzingWiki.

    I created a new Listener Requests page on the wiki (with a call-to-action on the home page) to capture ideas of topics, segments , and people to interview, or anything request. It would be great it people could contribute directly on that page, but if folks are in a hurry, they can just send a suggestion on Twitter @techarch and I will add it.

    @Jason and @Justin, I know you have your own lists! 🙂
    Just blast them to me via email and I will get them added!

  17. Jonathan says:

    There was a mention of Kerbal Space Program as a game the kids played.

    Just curious if Jason or Justin has tried this out themselves. There is an amazing little simulation in there! It’s a game a child can play with by putting engines on stuff and blowing them up, or an adult can learn orbital mechanics.

  18. Jason says:

    @Jonathan – I haven’t actually tried it myself because I just don’t have the time, but I have watched Colby play quite a bit. He’s always showing me his latest and greatest rockets and space planes. 😉 But it is really, really cool.

  19. @Jason Kerbal Space Program should try to piggy back on the movie Ender’s Game I reckon.

    @Justin …you expressed worries about drones having the connection to the home base cut off and then continuing with their mission regardless. There’s an interesting (but scary) talk about this here: http://www.ted.com/talks/daniel_suarez_the_kill_decision_shouldn_t_belong_to_a_robot.html

    “Advanced drones, automated weapons and AI-powered intelligence-gathering tools, he suggests, could take the decision to make war out of the hands of humans.”

  20. Justin says:

    @Duncan – That IS interesting. Thanks very much for the link.

  21. Jason says:

    @Duncan from Vetter – Yeah, Colby and I are both really looking forward to watching Ender’s Game. That reminds me – I need to finish reading the book to him. 😉

  22. Hi Guys,

    I met you both at Micrconf this year, hope to see you again next.

    Are you sharing the link or name for your website broker?