Citizens of Tech 009 – Robotic Conservation Game Unicorns

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Captain’s log: Stardate 68927.1

We have made contact with a strange subset of the species homo sapiens. They seem to be consumed with all things technological. At first we feared that they were a newly assimilated unit of the Borg collective. Thankfully we’ve determined that is not the case — they are simply Citizens of Tech!

Today on the show: unicorns watching your every move, reducing your electricity consumption, bikes, E3 bombshells, tiny robotic lassos and more.

So buckle into your Aluminum Falcon and prepare to jump to hyper-speed as we dive into this week’s edition of Citizens of Tech!


Unicorns – New Livestream App Lets Strangers Watch You Use Your Phone

  • Called Unicorns
  • Seriously
  • Intended audience is developers, game demos / walkthroughs / “let’s play” / anyone that needs to give a presentation of an app on a phone.
  • Accidental “overshare” of information is a big concern. PINs, email contents / contacts / etc.
  • “Think about what Twitch did for games that nobody seemingly thought others would watch,” says Owen Williams, who writes for The Next Web.
  • Ethan’s notes.
    • Periscope lets you livecast from your phone. Seems to have lots of buzz with the young people.
    • lets you use your tablet as a remote window into coworkers’ spaces. Helpful for distributed companies.

Saving Electricity

  • From a high over 40Kwh per day to under 20Kwh per day
  • LED Bulbs
  • Conservative light usage (natural light FTW)
  • Lowered timer for landscape lighting
  • Monitors from 3 to 1
  • Shut down equipment in lab rack
  • Cut back on laundry loads
  • Cut back on dishwasher loads, set to “smart wash” setting with no heated drying
  • Removed small refrigerator that was seeing little use
  • Hard to cut back
    • Electric stove
  • Next steps
    • More equipment shut downs in rack
    • Reviewing everything that’s plugged in (the tiny electrical thieves)
    • Cutting back on dryer use

Adjusting a bicycle front derailleur: 4 tweaks

  • Barrel adjustor
  • Cable tension
  • Upper limit screw
  • Lower limit screw

Big Announcements from the E3 Conference:

  • XBox One backward compatibility with Xbox 360 (Via emulation) !!
  • Microsoft Hololens; Halo and Minecraft
    • Hololens is *not* Oculus or HTC Vive – Not “VR”
    • Hololens *is* “AR” – augmented reality
  • New Doom
  • Star Wars: Battlefront
  • Gears of War 4
  • Mass Effect: Andromeda – 2016
  • Mirror’s Edge – 2016 (2008 Original – 8 years later)
  • Dark Souls 3
  • Fallout 4 – Boston!!
  • Just Cause 3
  • Kingdom Hearts 3
  • Final Fantasy 7 Remake: 18 Years later (Wow, that makes me feel old!)
  • The Last Guardian: Part 3 of the Trilogy – Ico (2001), Shadow of the Colossus (2006)


  • Goodbye, ello.


TIL the inventor of the heart stent approached numerous companies for funding and was rejected. It was funded by the owner of Fuddrucker’s, whom he met by chance on a golf course.


The Computer History Museum
1401 N Shoreline Blvd.
Mountain View, CA 94043


Tiny Robotic Tentacles Can Lasso An Ant

  • They can lasso an ant or scoop up a tiny fish egg.
  • 2x thickness of a human hair
  • Looks like a fishing line

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