Soundboard: Friends with Brews!
Scott: Friends with Rogue Amoeba? It’s working this time, Peter. Oh my god.
Peter: I also am friends with Rogue Amoeba on the piezo side.
Scott: Yep. I’m friends with them on the audio hijack side and this time my levels appear to be working so I don’t have to use the f-word and find my clinky thing.
Peter: The f-word.
Scott: It wasn’t the f-word. I called him an a-word.
Peter: Speaking of clinky things, what are we clinking today?
Scott: Oh yeah, you go first because you’re… oh look at that. That looks like a bottle of kombucha or something weird.
Peter: It is not. This is a bottle of Hackerschor Oktoberfestmarzen Original Filter German Fest Beer because it is Oktoberfest season. Drink that because you’re not a hacker. I am indeed a hacker. You’re the anti-hacker. I’m an ethical hacker. All right, I got a little bit of a pop there. I dropped the case and now I’m pouring. Oh yeah.
Scott: Oh yeah, look at that.
Peter: What about you? What are you drinking?
Scott: I’m having a repeat, Peter. I’m having a Three Creeks chocolate pine porter.
Peter: Chocolate porter? Five pine chocolate porter.
Scott: But I’m also having a new coffee.
Scott: I’m having what is called a Dapper and Wise Roasters highbrow blend.
Peter: Oh, a highbrow blend.
Scott: It says nutty, filbert’s, dates. Then it says whole bean and it says comforting. It’s comforting, Peter. It doesn’t matter what you say to me today. I’m going to be comforted by my highbrow blend.
Peter: Well, you should keep that along. Well, cheers buddy.
Scott: Cheers my friend. Oh, I haven’t poured my beer yet though. Geez.
Peter: What are you waiting for? Man, holding me up.
Scott: I only do one thing at a time. I can’t hold you up even though you’re probably lighter than I am. For sure you are. But remember I have a bad shoulder. Actually, my shoulder is pretty good these days.
Peter: Mine has been acting up and I haven’t been doing my physical therapy as regular as I should, but I’m going to have to start doing my physical therapy again for my knee because that is aggravated. Well, but on that note, first happy thoughts. Cheers.
Scott: Cheers my friend. Yeah, I found that my shoulder, if I do my PT and or body weight strength exercises three times a week, that’s enough to keep my shoulder feeling really good.
Scott: I try to do it more, but I’m just saying at a minimum, at a very minimum twice a week, but I need to average three times a week to really keep it from feeling pain and then it feels really good. So.
Peter: Yeah, I can tell when I’ve been lacking and I’ve been, I’ve definitely been lacking in my, my, my PT exercises, but yeah, I was getting a massage last week and it was a Thai massage. And at the end, the girl was working on it, you know, like basically hyper compressed my knee a little bit and feels like it sort of re-aggravated the injury from almost a year ago.
Scott: I hate to tell you, but that wasn’t a girl that was giving you a massage, Peter. In Thailand, they have elephants and they put them to good use.
Peter: No, I get to, if it was an elephant, they wouldn’t have been working on my knees. It would have been different.
Scott: Just leave your deposit in the trunk, Peter.
Peter: Thank you.
Scott: No problem.
Peter: Oh my God.
Scott: Oh man.
Peter: Have we ever got a lot to talk about?
Scott: Oh, well let’s do it.
Peter: All right. So first off, so you, you’re doing, you, you’re doing, you’re doing a repeat beer, but mine is a new beer.
Scott: Yeah. So talk about it. Tell us about the flavors. What notes do you taste?
Peter: It is malty. It is toasty and it is crisp, but it is nice. It’s like a five, I want to say a 5.6% alcohol. Of course I
Scott: hold it up to the mic. No, I see it, but let me see it in the glass. I want to see the color, the beautiful color.
Peter: Oh, it is a nice coppery.
Scott: That is nice.
Peter: Coppery color.
Scott: Yes. My beer is 6.2% alcohol by volume. If you will recall my chocolate porter. Here’s what mine looks like. Very dark, very dark. Definitely nice malty flavor.
Peter: Nice. Very mild hoppy, you know, bitterness. It’s, it’s very tolerable. So this is a Marsen. Apparently it’s part of a category like a Vienna lager or German style Marsen. Apparently there’s similarities there. So, but a nice deep amber color and it’s very clear. It’s filtered. So it’s, you know, very crisp and clear. You can see right through it.
Scott: It looks good.
Peter: Very happy. This is, this is good.
Scott: I can see right through your beer, Peter. Yeah, this is good. I’ve talked about this beer before, but it’s a good chocolate. Sometimes when people put chocolate in beer, they go way overboard.
Scott: This is not overboard. I didn’t have to throw it overboard. They didn’t go overboard. There’s no overboards in this beer.
Peter: Don’t throw your beer overboard. That has to be really bad. I mean, you have to be desperate.
Scott: There’s no overboarding. There’s no waterboarding. It’s just beer. It’s just chocolate beer and it’s good.
Peter: Chocolate beer. We like that.
Scott: Yep. So what do we have? Oh, and the coffee is really good too. Let me take a sip of this and see what I think of this highbrow blend. There’s not a brand that we’re accustomed to buying this. What did I call it? Kettle and wise Sanford and sons, dapper and wise, dapper and wise. It’s very dapper. And it’s very wise.
Scott: It’s a pretty good coffee. I don’t know if it’s my favorite, but it’s up there. It’s nice and smooth. There is no bitterness to it. Yeah, it’s good. I definitely smell the nuttiness and I taste it.
Peter: It’s like taste the rainbow.
Scott: You know, it’s Oh, speaking of that, I have, I got a book. Have I got an excerpt from a book for you, but before we get there, let’s talk about what we’re watching. And by that, I mean, what we’re risking watching on our wrists on our watch. As we watch our wrists.
Peter: As I understand it, we are both watching Apple watch ultra twos.
Scott: You are correct. Very good. First of all, one thing I would like to find out from you is how you have your watch face set up and I will send you a picture of mine.
Peter: I’m using the same face that you are, but it’s with a slightly different configuration.
Scott: Right, right. It’s the only that’s the problem is I turn it slightly. You’re not, you’re finding all the wrong angles. Ooh, that’s way different. Take a screenshot of it and send it to me. I’m sending you a screenshot of mine right now. This is mine, but I used the Apple frames shortcut that Vittici made. So that’s why it has the actual wristwatch around it.
Peter: There’s an Apple frames shortcut?
Scott: Yeah. It auto detects what the screenshot came from, what device the screenshot came from, and it puts a frame around it.
Peter: Oh, that’s pretty cool.
Scott: It is cool.
Peter: What does that cost?
Scott: No, it’s free. Oh, you just got to go to max stories.net and search for frames shortcut.
Peter: Well, you should put that into the show notes.
Scott: I should. And I will, but right now I’m drinking beer and coffee and I really don’t want to search for it myself.
Peter: Fine. Be that way.
Scott: Yeah. So I bought an Apple watch ultra two because my Apple watch six battery was starting to, to use itself up on a very rapid basis every day. And, and I would have to charge quite a bit before I could work out at night. If I was working out at night, it would drain like crazy during the day. And I was worried about having enough battery at work. Sometimes I thought, you know, I should get an Apple watch ultra because I want the longer battery. And what I figured I would like is what I do like one of the things that I like, which is I can work out for a couple hours during the day, any time of day. And I don’t think about charging. I don’t care what my battery percentage is that I just do my fricking workouts for as long as I want without even thinking about it. That is so nice.
Peter: And that goes to like the conversations that people have around electric vehicles, where most people who have electric vehicles would be perfectly fine suited, just fine with a car that has a hundred mile range, but it just feels nicer to have a 300 mile range, right? You know, just to have that little extra in the tank. So same with the watch.
Scott: And like I said, there have been times where if I’ve been at work and then I’m going to work out at night, I definitely have to spot charge to make sure that I have enough battery to get through the workout. Yep. I probably could have gotten by some of those times without spot charging, but I would have been in the red by the time I got done working out. So why do that? I like the size. It’s perfect. Got the trail. I guess this is the trail band, but it’s kind of weird. The fine woven trail loop. I like it. Yeah. This is the eco one that took three. This is why my watch took so long to get was because this is supposed to be environmentally friendly.
Peter: Right. Well, environmentally friendly means it costs more and takes more time to make.
Scott: Right. And I also have worn some of my other bands that I’ve owned previously with it and they fit fine and they’re nice too. So I’ve got multiple bands. Man, the display is so much better. The flat display, not having that dumb curve in it at the top and sides, it just, it looks higher quality. It’s shinier. The screen is more legible. It’s brighter. The flatness helps with usability. It looks like what the Apple watch should have been to me.
Peter: Right. But if the original Apple watch had been $800, they probably wouldn’t have sold as many.
Scott: Well, and that’s the downside to getting into the ultra lifestyle is now I’ve got all the benefits, but every upgrade is going to cost over double, you know, or roughly double, whatever, somewhere in that range.
Peter: Unless they ever, you know, be think maybe, maybe by the time Apple watch series 10 comes out, they might actually increase the battery life.
Scott: Yeah. But it’s not just the battery life that I care about. Like I said, the display, there’s no comparison. I would never go back to that other display. Yeah, no, absolutely. I’m definitely happier with the ultra. The buttons are nice. They yellow button, the orange button. What’s that called?
Peter: The action button, the action button.
Scott: I haven’t really figured out why it’s there. It’s kind of useless. I struggle to use it.
Peter: I use that action cut shortcut that you turned me on to a while ago, but it was so slow. Yeah. It took like many seconds to do whatever it was ever going to do. And I got tired of waiting for it.
Scott: Did you try it on the ultra too though?
Peter: I don’t know that I did
Scott: Give it a try on that. See if it’s any different.
Peter: Yeah. Right now I just have it set to me. My I drank water shortcut tracking when I make sure
Scott: that’s a good idea. I just use it to open workouts, which I don’t know why, because I’ve got many other ways to easily get into workouts, but it’s just whatever. I guess I could make it flashlight or, uh,
Peter: have you tried the emergency 95 decibel, uh, siren alarm shortcut?
Scott: I have not
Peter: be curious to hear what it sounds like.
Scott: Yeah. I would. I bet my cats would too. Yeah. I should do that now.
Peter: See what it sounds like right in the microphone.
Scott: Yeah. The screen is amazing. The buttons are nice. One thing I had originally when I first started using it was I would roll the crown to scroll things, right? And then if I wanted to roll back in the other direction, I found that I was pushing the button right into my wrist. That button is like right on the wrist and it was digging into my wrist and it hurt. Now I can do it without even compressing the watch whatsoever. But at first I thought this is going to be a serious problem. As it turns out, it’s not. I just scrubbed the crown a little bit differently, but I noticed now that that means that I’m using the crown differently than I was on my Apple watch six. And I had to, cause that one’s in the center of the watch, right? Not at the top of the watch. All right. So that annoyed me at first, but I got over it now. I don’t even have that problem. So I don’t know what that was all about. Good. Yeah. It’s speedy stuff launches quick. I’m hoping that like podcasts and stuff will download to this watch faster than they did on my Apple watch six. Hmm. I don’t know about that. Oh yeah. I don’t know. It might, I just honestly don’t know. But I mean, I’ve got cellular enabled as well.
Peter: So how about offline Siri? I don’t know.
Scott: I don’t know. I can’t tell you. I, one thing I did notice today and I sent you a message about it was even with the water eject feature, for some reason on this watch, when I try to tell it stuff through the mic, you know, when I tell it things after I’ve been in the shower, it gets everything wrong for a little while. It’s like, there’s water in there. It’s so weird. It is freaking weird. And then it works again, just fine later. And I haven’t quite figured that one out. Have you noticed anything like that?
Peter: No, I haven’t really. I’ve gotten it wet from time to actually know this watch. I don’t even remember if I’ve gotten this one wet or not. I don’t think I’ve.
Scott: Wait, you don’t shower. See, I have, what do they call those? The sport band, the rubbery ones. I use those when working out because I don’t want to get this one. I don’t want to sweat stain this. And so I wear those when working out. And so I just help in the shower with my watch on. Oh, okay. Why not get all the grime and sweat off it? Why not?
Peter: Yeah, I don’t know. I usually just take it off and that’s one of the, you know, one of the times that it spends charging.
Scott: Peter, the advantage of being in a beautiful relationship with your watches, you can shower with it.
Peter: Uh, I’m sure it is.
Scott: Anyway, I like it. It’s good. It’s definitely a notable upgrade. I understand why people like theirs so much. I kind of forgive all the people who never actually workout with their ultra watches. Although I’m sure that in the four and a half days that I’ve owned mine, I’ve already put more exercise minutes on it than probably 90% of the middle-aged white guys out there that own ultra watches.
Peter: I mean, you be careful. You might be talking to some of our tens of listeners here.
Scott: I know. And I’m sorry, but get your ass out there and exercise.
Peter: Oh man. All right. What else? So you’ve got your watch. That’s good. It’s big. It’s beautiful, et cetera.
Scott: You’ve still got yours.
Peter: I’ve still got mine. Yup. And I’ve got speechify.
Scott: You’ve talked about that before, but it sounds like you’re getting even more into it than you were before.
Peter: I’m getting a little more into it, but with every step that I get into it, I find more limitations. And it’s so weird. It’s such a weird company. It’s a small, it’s gotta be a small group of developers. It can’t be, you know, this is not a huge program. And the thing is that, you know, it’s saving grace over all of the other text to speech stuff that I have used as the voices, as I’ve mentioned, right? The voices are great. I can listen to these voices for a long time.
Scott: Well, I mean, they’ve got Gwyneth Paltrow.
Peter: And Snoop Dogg. Don’t forget Snoop Dogg.
Scott: Snoop Dogg definitely does more than make up for Gwyneth Paltrow.
Peter: Absolutely. Right. I don’t use Gwyneth Paltrow. So I’ve got all these fun voices and, you know.
Scott: Nobody wants to use them.
Peter: Right. So if I’m listening to something, just, you know, like a Wired magazine article and it’s kind of funny or something, I’ll have Snoop Dogg, you know, put me in the right mood. And then they’ve got some other voices. They’re all just really high quality, but the software still just lacks some really basic features. And I have sent them a few suggestions. And now apparently I’ve sent them enough suggestions that they invited me to have a meeting with them to discuss their product roadmap. I was like,
Scott: okay, don’t go.
Peter: Well, I can’t.
Scott: Don’t go. The only person that’s going to show up is their hit man on a building about a half mile away.
Peter: The Calendly link that they sent me doesn’t work. So I can’t.
Scott: Yeah. They need Calendify apparently.
Peter: Oh my God. They need Calend-something. So, I was a little disappointed, but not at all surprised when they sent me a non-working link. But you know, like basic features, like being able to handle a PDF with whose text is in columns.
Scott: Right. That would be really good.
Peter: And they got, you know, one of the developers said, oh, well you can use our crop feature. So you have an, you can like trace rectangles around blocks of text and make different zones. Okay. If I’m doing that for a single page, that’s fine. But when I have 135 page PDF book, I don’t want to do that.
Scott: Yeah. Besides you’re trying to listen to an article, it’s not arts and crafts. You don’t want to be tracing rectangles over stuff.
Peter: Boom. And on top of that too, they do have a feature where you can say define this for like every page.
Scott: Right. Which is good. But not all the columns are the same in every page.
Peter: Exactly. Because sometimes there will be like a top paragraph that spans the entire width of the page. Right. And that will then get split in half. So, you know, it’s like, okay, I think they want to do the right thing, but
Scott: I don’t.
Peter: You know what? This friggin, this thing is expensive.
Scott: I don’t think they want to do the right thing.
Peter: And all I can think is that they spent all the money to, you know, promote their celebrity voices. I think that’s where all their budget is gone.
Scott: Listen, so Gwyneth Paltrow does not give a $^*+ about multi-column view. Okay. Peter. So just back off. You’re unreasonable.
Peter: Yeah, but my man Snoop Dogg, he’s all about the multi-column views, man.
Scott: That’s not quite right, but it’s pretty good. It’s a little bit off, but I like it. You need Snoopify because you… Snoopify. That’d be Snoopify.
Peter: That would have been what they should have named it was Snoopify. I would subscribe to that. Anyway, so overall, you know, like I cannot give this product a buy recommendation. If we were back in the My Mac days and I was writing a review, I would not tell you to go out and spend money on this because it’s so damn expensive. It basically comes out to like 10 bucks a month for a year long subscription compared to something like Voice Dream, which was like, I think 20 bucks when I bought it. And that was lifetime.
Scott: Peter, why did you quit writing over two terabytes of reviews for My Mac?
Peter: It was over two terabyte of reviews, just so you know.
Scott: Sorry. Why did you quit doing that?
Peter: So the one thing that was cool about being a My Mac reviewer was free stuff, right? They would send me something. I would do my evaluation of it. And then I got to keep it to this day. What, 10 years later? I still have the Bluetooth keyboard, the Can-X Bluetooth keyboard that I used. So it was a nice perk, right? Now that said, if I was purely, you know, journalistic and I had all the morals and integrity and stuff, I wouldn’t be able to do that, right? I couldn’t keep that because it’s essentially a bribe or something.
Scott: But the thing about Tim, here’s the thing that I liked about Tim. He did have a clear cut sense of what’s the right thing, what’s the wrong thing when it comes to getting stuff from people in product. He made it very clear to them, you’re not influencing our opinions and you can’t ask us to say this, that, and the other. We’re going to say what we think. He was always very clear about that.
Peter: Oh, absolutely. But when it comes to accepting a gift, there’s a little bit of a mental tax that goes into when I receive this, I’m like, oh wow, I got a free keyboard. I don’t want to say anything bad about it.
Scott: Regardless of the policy, it does affect your desire to bash somebody over the head.
Peter: Right. So that was it. Plus I just, you know, it was a time thing, you know, it was nice, but you know, I was putting in like two, three hours reviewing something that was worth like, you know, 30 bucks. So, you know, when it came time, like I was like, no, work is just keeping me too busy. Didn’t have enough time to do it, but it was fun. Anyway. Yeah. But anyway, so Speechify, I don’t know if you are interested in it, let me know to your listener. I will give you a referral code where you get a discount and I get a credit as well. Again, you know, full disclosure, right? You know, I’m getting paid to say that. Not really, but if you buy it, I would get a discount.
Scott: But if you just listen to Peter’s review, you can tell that he’s clearly not saying amazing things about them just because he’s got some codes to hand out.
Peter: But if you have simple structured documents.
Scott: Right. No multi-columns.
Peter: In one column, right? Well, what I do use it for mostly is websites, web page, have it read web pages, articles to me. Here’s the weird thing though, wired, right? You know, if you look at any wired article, they always have like all of the top like five or six somewhat possibly related articles embedded in the article you’re using. If you switch to reader view, those five or six or whatever related or unrelated articles that they’re trying to get you to read show up like 10 times throughout the course of the document.
Peter: When you go to reader view, they inject it over and over and over and it’s like every couple paragraphs, it’ll be like, and you know, what Bankman Fried is doing is blah, blah, blah, blah, blah. Folks have just discovered this. Scientists have just discovered this. Here’s why global warming is real. Blah, blah, blah, blah, blah. Bankman Fried, da, da, da, da, da, da, da, da. And then it’s like, folks have just discovered this blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, and it’s the exact same thing over and over again. So I can’t use reader view with wired because they inject their own self ads over and over again. And I pay for wired.
Scott: Can it really be that often, Peter, when you can’t even tell me what they just discovered? I mean, clearly they need to put it in there a few more times for you to get the message.
Peter: Oh dear God. Yeah. But I’ve been fast forwarding it. That’s the thing that’s kind of annoying, but like listening to like long form articles like that, or Krebs on security articles or stuff like that. I get those in the morning and I just have it read me that I like those.
Scott: Can I just say, Brian Krebs, you’re doing God’s work, but my God update your fricking website. It is shite to read on anything but a laptop. And even that it sucks on.
Peter: I mean, just speechify makes it better.
Scott: Have you heard of responsive design?
Peter: My friend, speechify makes it better.
Scott: I know, but it is just, it’s a relic.
Peter: But other suggestions that I have given them was for instance, a pronunciation dictionary, right? Because it can’t say words like CISO and it, you know, it’s like Sam Bankman fried. It’s always fried.
Scott: Well, maybe he was fried. That might explain a few things.
Peter: And there’s always content. Right? So when I start that Wired article, it’s always skip to main content.
Scott: Peter, they’re trying to set the mood. No, they’re trying to get you all content and happy.
Peter: They want me to be content.
Scott: Exactly. Just like my coffee is comfortable or comforting or whatever it was. Comfortable.
Peter: Right? So the voices that they have, again, the sound quality is great, but there are some shortcomings into the pronunciation. You know, so there’s other stuff. So again, it feels like a, you know, a version 1.0 or a beta product. It doesn’t feel like something that’s been around for, I guess a couple of years at least. It’s got work to do, but that said, you know, for the proper use case, the voices are just so much better to listen to than the Ivona or NeoSpeech ones that, you know, Voice Dream has.
Scott: Even without comparing them to anything else, I can’t listen to those anymore.
Peter: Yeah. But if you could just take the, you know, and I don’t know where the voices come from.
Peter: You know, I don’t know if the speechified people are coding their own.
Scott: Peter, they come from people.
Peter: Okay. Well, no, they come from AI. These are AI generated voices, Scott.
Scott: They come from Soylent Green.
Peter: But I don’t know, like, where those voices come from as opposed to what, you know, where’s the technology, what’s the secret sauce? Why can’t the Voice Dream author get the same voices? Because if you just take Voice Dream and give it good voices, you’ve killed Speechify. Speechify is just out because it’s a garbage program other than the voices. And Speechify as Voice Dream is an amazingly cool, robust, mature program with garbage voices.
Scott: So what you’re saying is we need Snoop Dream. We need Snoop Dream. So if Speechify and Voice Dream could just like come together and get together and have a Snoop baby, you know what? Worse things could have happened.
Peter: See here, Hewlett Packard plus Digital Equipment Corporation plus Compaq.
Scott: Nobody ever had a baby pop out that looked like Snoop and said, Oh no, they said, we’re rich. Not only that, we have the coolest kid ever.
Peter: All right. I want to plug, before we get into what we’re reading, what you’re going to read. I have been having so much fun listening to the guys over at BigSandwich.co. I am happily paying them $9 a month now for my podcast subscription.
Scott: Oh, you upgraded to the Big Cheese or whatever it is.
Peter: I’m Big Sandwich.
Scott: Yeah, Big Sandwich.
Peter: You may recall, I don’t remember if we talked about this on the show, but Scott, okay.
Scott: We did. We just talked about it last episode.
Peter: Oh, but with the $2 and then $5, it’s the same?
Scott: Exactly the same.
Peter: Well, I’ve had a beat. I don’t remember what we talk about anymore, Scott, because I’m always getting drunk when we’re talking.
Scott: Now that we only put out an episode every two weeks, it was almost a month ago now that we recorded that other one. I don’t even, I don’t know the timing.
Peter: I don’t know how that works, but anyway, that’s… Anyway, the folks behind The Weekly Planet and others now, they just hit their 500th episode and I am a proud subscriber.
Scott: Yes. I started listening to that on the treadmill today, but when I got on the bike, I was doing an Apple Fitness workout, so I didn’t finish it. But yeah, I started listening to that.
Peter: The beginning is hilarious. You should listen to it. Yeah. So
Scott: they have a, what does it sound like with 500 or 499 voices all over? All synchronized, yeah.
Peter: Just, it was static. It was great. Yeah. They’re like, it sounds like the beginning of a mob riot, a soccer riot or soccer match or something. So anyway, what, so from them, they have a section every week called what you read, what we’re reading, what we’re going to read. So Scott, what are you reading? What are you going to read?
Scott: Speaking of Sam Bankman fried, I am reading a book called Number Go Up. Number Go Up. And it is about the cryptocurrency insanity. The thing that I want to read is about NFTs. It just shows how much of this stuff is religion, Peter. When NFT came out, when NFT singular came out, when NFTs came out, we knew that they were right. Like we knew it was an illusion. But the thing that I didn’t realize is how many celebrities, how many people were buying and endorsing these things.
Peter: So I want to read this to you.
Peter: Go for it. Read it to me. Don’t just read it to me. Read it, read it to the listener.
Scott: I will read it to you. Listener. I’m speaking directly to you. Imagine that I’m standing in your house with a book in my hand. I think I just scared everybody away. Okay. A common misconception, Peter, about NFTs listener is that the buyer owns a unique, verifiable digital image. That is not the case. There’s nothing stopping anyone from right clicking on Justin Bieber’s ape and downloading the image file to their computer. The replica is indistinguishable from the $1.3 million original, and it’s perfectly usable for a profile picture. When a bored ape buyer pays hundreds of thousands of dollars, they’re not getting a digital ape cartoon. They’re getting the ability to prove that they are the one who paid hundreds of thousands of dollars for a digital ape cartoon. That’s the difference. That’s the thing about NFTs that blew my mind once I realized you’re not buying something that can’t be duplicated. You’re just buying a piece of information in a blockchain in the ledger.
Peter: Yep. You just throw in some money out there and it just, I don’t know, man.
Scott: So it goes on. Think back to that giant Excel spreadsheet in the cloud, the blockchain. What if, in addition to keeping track of how many Bitcoins or Ethereum tokens each person owns, it could also track who owns which ape picture. NFTs did that by adding an additional column. There’s a name, Zeke. There’s a column that says Ethereum coins 103. There’s a column that says bored ape number 2735. The blockchain doesn’t even hold the actual image file. It contains a pointer to the image, which is stored elsewhere on the internet. In my case, my line in the spreadsheet would have a link to bored ape 2735, which has an army helmet and heart-shaped glasses. Anyone could look at that bored ape or even download the image, but only I would be able to use the blockchain to prove that I owned it. It might not sound like much, but ownership brought bragging rights during the crypto boom when people judged each other by the size of their wallets. And one of the highest terms of esteem was degen for degenerate gambler. NFT prices had gone up so much that crypto investors, celebrities, Hollywood talent agencies, and fine art auction houses were calling NFTs the future of art, culture, and video gaming. This is the part that blows my mind, Peter, is how many people are we that I just don’t understand our inability to see through shite anymore.
Peter: We’re stupid. People are stupid. So no, they can’t. I mean,
Scott: Most NFTs were part of collections of thousands of avatars that could be used as profile pictures. This made them easier to show off and having so many nearly identical items made it easier for traders to bet on their prices. The NBA had started selling basketball highlight videos as NFTs, which were something like digital sports cards. Trading them in was so frenzied that in March 2021, the Wall Street Journal featured a photo of a 27 year old who’d made $15 million flipping these highlight videos. The same month, you may have heard of this company, the same month, the auction house Christie’s offered a collage of drawings by Beeple, the most popular NFT artists. The drawings were childish and often misogynistic. Think Hillary Clinton with a penis or Trump with boobs in bondage gear. But the reviews in NFT world were rhapsodic. I look at my life as pre-Beeple and post-Beeple, said Noah Davis, the head of digital at Christie’s. Christie’s auction house is not some fly by night stupid startup company full of bros. And yet the head of digital there, Peter thinks of his life as pre-Beeple and post-Beeple and goes on to say the same way the world thinks about before Jesus Christ and after. For a few months, it seemed like anyone with a modicum of fame or crypto-savviness could make huge money selling NFTs. It was even easier than creating an ICO back in 2017. Jack Dorsey, the co-founder of Twitter, sold an image of his first tweet for $2.9 million. A woman known online for selling jarred farts, Peter, started selling NFTs of her flatulence instead. Her slogan was, imagine the smell. I don’t know what to say. When I read that, I thought to myself, you know, I think the planet is doing us a favor by heading us towards the extinction event that we’re headed for. When I read that picture of humanity, I don’t want it to survive. I want it to die.
Peter: I’m having a hard time coming up with a counter argument to that.
Scott: I guess my question is why, why do we do this? And it’s not just that why do people do it? Of course, they’re going to do it, but why do so many people buy in? Is it literally just all about the money? Is it literally just about the money? And this could have been anything. And as long as it was popular and money was involved, people, this many people, including celebrities, including auction houses that you would think had a sterling reputation, but now they’re, you know, what is going on here? I don’t understand.
Peter: Greed. It’s greed.
Scott: But why can’t people just admit it instead of pretending like, Oh, this is the future of art. Oh, there’s the, why do they have to dress it up like that? Why do they have to pretend like it’s so profound? Why do they have to, it just boggles my mind. I, I, anyway, this book isn’t that depressing in general. That was the most depressing section of the book for me, but it’s actually a really good book. You should read it because the author of this book is basically obsessed with this coin called tether, which was used to back, you know, a huge majority of the, of the cryptocurrency world.
Peter: Hence the name. It was tethered to real currency, right?
Scott: Supposedly supposedly. And he kept thinking, this is a Ponzi scheme. This is going to go down and it kept not, and it kept not, and it kept not. And he was like, what am I going to write my book about? And it’s just a great story. But anyway, he follows the rise and fall of cryptocurrency and just the insanity and all these people admitting, Oh yeah, yeah, this operates just like a Ponzi scheme, but it’s not a Ponzi scheme.
Peter: It’s not a Ponzi scheme. No, no,
Scott: it could never be that runs incredibly like one. Yeah. You would enjoy this book if you’re at all into technology and, or how people adopt stuff without thinking. I don’t know. It’s, it’s a good read.
Peter: There you go. Cool. Well, Hey, I am starting to feel my beer.
Scott: You got your hand in your cup again.
Peter: Yeah. It feels warm. So that’s bad. So we should, we should move to wrap up, but what I’d like you to do is send me that passage because I want to, as a bonus content for the listener, I want to have Snoop Dogg read it.
Scott: Oh my God. Yes. Yes. We can make that downloadable somewhere.
Peter: Yes. So just send that to me, dear listener. Send that to me, Scott, and I will send it to you, dear listener. You can find that on our website, friendswithbrews.com.
Scott: It sounds to me like there’s a way that you can make an audio file into an NFT.
Peter: I’m sure I can.
Scott: Okay. Well then maybe we should sell an NFT of Snoop Dogg reading that passage.
Peter: For what? 0.5 Bitcoins? Does that sound fair? What’s 0.5 Bitcoins go for these days? Like, like a 95 cents? I don’t know. Last, I think it was 95 cents about an hour ago. And so now it’s
Scott: probably in about $9,500 right now. No, no, no. They don’t bounce that high anymore. They rebound slightly. Like they go back up a dollar or two and then they just keep going down. Right now, according to Raycast, Bitcoin is worth $28,549.92.
Peter: What was its high? Ask Raycast. I don’t know how to do that.
Scott: Okay. If you go, what was Bitcoin’s high? And then hit tab.
Peter: I don’t have the AI. I don’t have the AI. Oh, you don’t have the AI? No, I don’t pay for that. I am currently, other than like, you know, being the customer of Microsoft, I’m not paying for any AI services at this point.
Scott: According to this, Bitcoin’s all time high price was $68,789.63. It reached its peak on November 8th.
Peter: I thought it hit like 70 something. Yeah, but remember this, this might be, okay. So let me say, um, GPT-4 says it’s caught up on current events. So I don’t know.
Scott: Well, so the tab, here’s the thing about Raycast AI. If you type something in the Raycast bar and hit tab to use that AI, the quick AI that’s GPT-3. But if you do, if you open the chat window, you can have GPT-4. So let me ask GPT-4. What was the last, what was the highest?
Peter: What was the highest high? Maybe you got the lowest high.
Scott: Gathering information. It still says November 8th, 2021.
Peter: Okay. So if you Google for that, what do you get? Bitcoin all time high price.
Scott: Yeah. It’s it exceeded 65,000 USD in November, 2021. That’s what I got in Statista.
Peter: Yeah. According to this, it was 69,000 all time high of nearly 69,000 in November, 2021. So I would say that GPT got it right.
Scott: Interesting. Statista shows it with a high of about 61,837. See GPT said 67,566. Forbes says nearly 69,000, which 67,500 is nearly 69,000. Yeah. It’s weird. I’m on Statista.com and on their graph show an all time high of 61,837 in October, but in the text they say it exceeded 65,000 in November. But if you look at that graph, you don’t see that, which is kind of funny.
Peter: So numbers, yeah, graphs, graphs lie.
Scott: Graphs, numbers, who knew?
Peter: Graphs, numbers. So there you go.
Scott: All right, Peter, speaking of graphs and numbers, you have a graph of a big red button that you like to hit all the time. You like to show the listeners the graph of the big red button.
Peter: I like to hit that big red button. Big red button.
Scott: Oh, I was going to say the graph of the big red button only goes down. Too late.