Citizens of Tech #004 – Retro Virtual Reality Kittehs

Today I’m cross-promoting my podcast which I produce with my good friend Ethan Banks. Citizens of Tech is a tech show for the shamelessly nerdy among us. We dive deep on nerdy rants about any “techie” subject that captures our imagination this week. The show is presented in a “Present, Past, and Future” format.

Hosts: Eric Sutphen (Me!) @zutfen and Ethan Banks, @ecbanks.

Topics discussed:


“Retro VGS” console aims to revive the humble video game cartridge

  • Old Atari Jaguar hardware manufacturing tools
  • *NOT* Jaguar internals, just the shell
  • 16-bit Graphics? 32-Bit? 2D? 3D?
  • Cart-based games – Single game per cart or SD with loader?

Researchers craft network attack to “hack” surgical robot (sort of)

  • Planned test.
  • Intended to expose platform issues.
  • Remote telemedicine is a growing field.

With podcasts and video, Spotify becomes an all-in-one streaming service

  • “Keep all of the things you listen to in one place.”
  • “In terms of content selection, ESPN, ABC, NBC, Comedy Central and many more — including a load of popular podcast networks — will be available inside the app.”
  • “Spotify’s website says it has more than 60 million active users, of which 15 million are paying subscribers. Still, the company has yet to turn a profit.”

Nvidia turns on 1080p 60 FPS streaming for its Grid cloud gaming service

$199 Console to go with that service

NASA: 10,000-year-old ice shelf gone by 2020:

  • “One of the last remaining sections of Antarctica’s Larsen B Ice Shelf is dramatically weakening, according to a new NASA study.”
  • “Larsen B measured 4,445 square miles in January 1995. It went down to 2,573 square miles in February 2002 after the major disintegration, and a month later Larsen B was down to 1,337 square miles. At present the Larsen B remnant is about 618 square miles. That’s less than half the size of Rhode Island, the smallest U.S. state. Two decades ago, Larsen B was slightly smaller than the state of Connecticut.”

Cat’s purr breaks decibel record:

  • “Tracy Westwood’s cat Merlin appears to break 100 decibels on an iPhone in the YouTube video below, but Guinness World Records officially recorded Merlin at 67.8 decibels, still good enough to beat the old loudest purr of 67.68 decibels.”

Deathwatch – we add fax machines.

  • Pop over ads
  • FM Radio
  • Tidal – New $9.99/mo plan may be saving them?
  • Fax machines


We reminiscence about toys that allowed us to create whatever our minds could conjure up.

Tinkertoys —

Lincoln Logs —

Capsela —


Nucleus Scientific – Cutting battery charge times by 20x?

  • Nucleus Scientific revealed a solution onstage today at TechCrunch Disrupt NY that can charge a phone in minutes. With this technology, the company aims to allow a Tesla can be fully recharged in the amount of time it takes to pump a tank of gas.
  • Nucleus Scientific’s Intelligent Energy System marries hardware breakthroughs with custom software to achieve their results. The complete system of custom batteries, sensors, feedback control systems and algorithms not only allows for unheard of charge times, but also extends the life of the battery.
  • The company constructed a large battery testing facility to build-out this technology. In the lab, the company recharged 14,000 mAh batteries (equal to nine smartphones) in 100 seconds. But if the charge time is increased to three minutes, the company was able to double the life of the battery.

OculusVR Shipping in 2016:

  • HTC Vive Launching November 2015? 90FPS – Full Steam Integration
  • Too late to the party, or will the name and established developer base save it?

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