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AV Rant #279: You Are Boring

Ever wonder about highly directional sound? The Soundlazer promises just that. While it still has a ways to go before meeting its funding goal, it is well on its way. This is a tech that has obvious applications in a retail setting but might also work in a home. Tom would love to check one out and Liz wants to be shown that it isn’t some elaborate hoax. Firmware updates have become fairly standard these days and Tom doesn’t like it. Liz doesn’t like that they are now updating the ends of video games based on players’ reactions. Would you pay extra to be allowed to twitter while in a movie theater? How about for 2D, is that worth extra to you? Google wants all your data and users are crying foul. Tom thinks it is all an overreaction. What do you think? Oh, and your new Samsung TV may be spying on you. So there’s that. Thanks for listening. Check out our Facebook Page. Click here for our YouTube channel where you can see the recordings of our show videos. Download Tom’s FREE superhero-themed ebook Bob Moore: No Hero wherever ebooks are sold (or given away in this case). Visit Tom's website for download links as well as links for the two full-length followups -  Bob Moore: Desperate Times and Bob Moore: Hostile Territory. Lastly, if you live in the Tampa Bay area and are interested in a mobile climbing wall, check out Fearless Mobile Climbing and meet Tom in person!

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  1. March 28th, 2012 at 12:26 | #1

    Not sure what your geographic situation is but I still want to get a professional opinion of our unique speakers. Local response has been excellent. Most frequent comment is that they look great. At a retailer demo, they noted that the appearance would bridge the wife’s objections based upon appearance. Amatuer audiophiles are more attracted to the sound but all agree on the look.

  2. jfalk
    March 28th, 2012 at 16:52 | #2

    Sorry, Liz, but I think Tom has by far the best of the privacy argument. First, all of these services are voluntary — you don’t have to be part of any service you don’t want to. And if you don’t know enough about the service to be comfortable with it, don’t use it. That’s step 1. Step 2: You give up your privacy in data when you give the data to someone. And no matter how many promises a company makes to you about what they’re going to do with the data, the promises can be broken — advertantly, inadvertantly, intentionally, unintentionally — doesn’t matter to you unless you hope to sue and collect. (Chances: 0.) So don’t give up any data which you wouldn’t give willingly to the world. Step 3: Your data isn’t as valuable as you think it is. What restaurants I go to are valuable data to me; it is marginally valuable to restaurants near wherever I happen to be at any given moment…. but that’s pretty close to it. What books I read (or at least buy, because they don’t know what I’ve read) is of really limited use to some marketer. Aggregated data, on the other hand, is really really valuable, but it doesn’t implicate privacy rights. The vast majority of data acquires value through aggregation, which anonymizes it. (It doesn’t necessarily actually anonymize it, but it does so practically through the basic principle that no individual is really that valuable to a marketer.) Step 4: There are niche markets where the specific identity of the guy is really valuable. But, as Tom points out in his rockclimbing example, that’s exactly what you want the marketer to do — find you.
    Just to keep Tom from getting a bigger ead, i think your reasoning on 3D movies is silly, but that’s a conversation best left for another time

  3. Jeremy
    April 1st, 2012 at 22:37 | #3

    I believe Tom nailed it with “You are boring.” I would consider myself a slight conspiracy theorist when it comes to our government, but by no means do I think them gathering any kind of data, even watching me in my living room is going to do them any good. Google is collecting data to improve their product so that they can make $$$, and they aren’t going to make money by selling a youtube video of me on my coach. Nobody cares. However, I would probably have a different opinion if I were a political figure of some type, and would have a greater concern for info being used against me in some damaging fashion.

  4. jfalk
    April 2nd, 2012 at 12:01 | #4

    More on this: I’d be very interested to ehar what liz and Tom say about this study: http://www.technologyreview.com/read_article.aspx?id=39938&a=f

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