On Episode 321 of The Waves of Tech, we dive into some traveling technology stories including the debate over free hotel WiFi and what technology is needed to coordinate a live television show taping. The Rio Olympics are over but people are already talking about Tokyo 2020. It is expected that the medals will be manufactured using recycled electronic waste and smartphones. Twitter is waging its own war of terrorist. The popular social media platform has suspended over 360,000 accounts related to terrorist activity over the past 16 months. And finally, NASA re-established communication with a lost spacecraft (Stereo B) after 22 months of radio silence! Enjoy the podcast and continue to ride…the waves of tech.
Traveling Tech Stories
On a recent trip to watch a live taping of American Ninja Warrior, Steve was able to capture some tech stories. First, it’s hotel WiFi. Free WiFi is pretty universal. You find it in libraries, airports, universities, and coffee shops. Hotels continue to charge upwards of $20 per day for access, often with spotty service and connection. Why is WiFi not a common complimentary item in 2016? During the live taping, Steve captured some of the magic behind TV and that involves a lot of tech. This includes the production bus, the wiring, the sound and lighting system, the camera setup, and so much. It really shows the amount of work that goes into a one-hour segment of television.
The Olympics in Rio are now complete, with the USA topping the medal count. With the 2020 games in Tokyo already on people’s minds, the planning has already began. This includes how to manufacture the various types of medals to be given. A Tokyo non-governmental agency is reaching out to extract gold, silver, and bronze from e-waste to create the 2020 coveted medals. Electronic waste (TVs, computers, phones) is a major concern around the world and growing in Japan. You can expect to see medals made of recyclable materials coming in 2020. Who knows…maybe parts of your old smartphone will be hanging around someone’s neck!
Recently, we discussed the events surrounding the banning of a reporter from Twitter due to their coordinated and nasty account on the comedian and SNL cast member Leslie Jones. It looks like Twitter is also suspending accounts that promote and encourage terrorist activity. Over the past 16 months, Twitter has suspended over 360,000 accounts for spreading terrorist propaganda, nearly 235,000 in 2016 alone. The battle is constant as they attempt to keep their platform free of terrorism and users that attempt to do harm to others. Perhaps Twitter is starting to learn their role as a member of society than simply being a social media platform.
In 2006, NASA launched the STEREO mission featuring STEREO-A and STEREO-B. These spacecrafts were designed to monitor solar activity from different locations around the sun, one ahead in its orbit and one behind and did so successfully for a number of years. Twenty two months ago, the spacecraft lost communication with NASA and had not been heard of. NASA re-established contact with a wayward satellite on Sunday nearly two years after the spacecraft suddenly dropped off line during a test.