Tech tAUk Reloaded #17: Merry Techmas to All

Tech tAUk Reloaded
Tech tAUk’s history with holiday specials has always enjoyed a couple of musical parodies, and Douglas just couldn’t let the opportunity pass without another one this time around. (But one was enough.) That said, we have an enormously packed episode of Tech tAUk for you this week before we head off to enjoy the holidays.

We begin with another Robot Uprising segment, looking at Google’s acquisition of Boston Dynamics, the creators of creepy galloping military robots, the eighth such acquisition for Google in the past six months.

And in this week’s ROCK in the NSA, we go through the dump truck-worth of revelations that came out in the past week:

Our other tech headlines this week:

Douglas briefly discusses recent commentary about boring and impersonal holiday cards and how they are being perceived as “impersonal” and “self-serving” these days.

Then Josh takes into a holiday edition of the GameZone, declaring the PS4 the winner over the Xbox One for sales, though that depends on how you view the numbers. He then runs down through the hottest games of 2013:

Josh also acknowledges an opinion column about violent video games and mental health in the wake of the anniversary of the Sandy Hook shooting.

For our Bytes of the Week, Douglas gives a Shout-Out to the Hour of Code, a publicity effort to demonstrate the need for computer science and programming education, which helped over 15 million students learn about programming last week.
Then, Josh offers up two mini-rants about a spermbot controlled by a magnetic field, and comments from the founder of SantaCon.

Stay tuned next week, when our Christmas Eve gift to you will be an episode sharing highlights from these past four months of Tech tAUk Reloaded. Then on New Years Eve, we’ll be back for our 2013 Year in Review episode.

Episode Duration: 1:29:11
On This Episode: Douglas Bell and Josh Feldman
Direct Download: Tech tAUk Reloaded #17 (45.1 MB AAC)
Alternate Download: Tech tAUk Reloaded #17 (42.8 MB MP3)

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About Douglas Bell

I live in Washington, D.C., and work as a Broadcast Technician at WAMU 88.5 FM, the local NPR affiliate in the Washington metro area. My primary shift is to engineer the local feed of NPR’s Morning Edition, including local news and weather, long-form features and station breaks… and yes, the shift starts at 5 am, so I’ve got the whole quasi-nocturnal thing going on. I am also the Coordinating Producer for Ken Rudin’s Political Junkie, an independently-produced podcast and public radio program. Extracurricularly, I play cello, and participate in a church choir and a handbell choir. I enjoy discovering new places, and am constantly searching for the perfect cheeseburger. I am also known as a frequent teller of puns.