1x26: We Do Get To Make It Up

Jeremy Garcia, Bryan Lunduke, Jono Bacon, and Stuart Langridge present Bad Voltage, in which the team fail to laugh at one another's jokes, succeed in laughing at one another's approach to privacy, and discuss:

  • A company named Arubixs have started, and then had cancelled, a crowdfunding campaign for a wrist-strappable device named Portal, in the face of scorn from the Android Police site and disbelief. What's going on? And how does crowdfunding work in this sort of situation? Should we think of crowdfunding as more like investment than like shopping? (1.55)
  • Bryan reviews the Samsung Galaxy Camera 2, a point-and-shoot camera running Android
  • Xprize have launched the Global Learning Xprize and an associated crowdfunding campaign: we ask Jono to explain it and answer our questions on how it all works and what its open-source requirements could mean for the field (32.48)
  • We are going live. Live Voltage, the first Bad Voltage live show, will be the main evening entertainment at the Los Angeles SCALE conference in 2015! And we ask for your thoughts on how we make it happen and what you'd like to see there on the forum; let us know! (47.29)
  • Are there privacy implications to storing genetic information? A recent announcement and retraction by generic analysis and ancestry company 23andme prompted discussion around the nature of their business and what a big database of genetic information might be useful for (53.42)

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My boss had a picture, taken from his iphone 5s, for wallpaper on his monitor. He really liked it, saying how good it was. And it was ok, but what would stand out for me was the noise and fringing. What does really matter, though, is that he liked it. He was satisfied with the quality and it was there for him to look at and enjoy everyday.

I’m thinking it was 23andme that a friend was suggesting we use for medical reasons. He said that, although they cannot offer that service anymore, they will send you the raw data and you can do the work yourself. He said it is a lot of work, but he was able to find some things about himself. I need to look into this more, but it would be nice if there were tools available that made it easier for a person, on a more limited budget, to do genetic research for himself.

As far as these crowd-funding entities, do many, if any, projects offer anything like stock in the enterprise? With things like this Arubixs, all you get is an item if it goes through. Is that correct? I would think it would be a good model (offering stock), that way ones money would actually be an investment instead of a purchase.

There is a clear problem here, lets say a company were to say for every $100 you get a 1% share of the business then $1000 is 10% and $10,000 is 100%. Do any of these crowd funding schemes allow you to set a cap? Can you say $100 gives you 1% of the business but the maximum this can raise is $2000 because I an not prepared to give up more than 20%?

I have a big worry about such a large database existing. There is a clear upside in that it should be possible to correlate DNA sequences with medical conditions which my doctor can use to ensure I am screened early for any possible worries and provide medical treatment.

On the flip side if my medical insurance get access to the same data and my DNA shows a particular pattern they will increase my premiums as a minimum and may decide to refuse to insure me. I live in the UK so have access to the NHS (National Health Service) but if you live in a country that does not have a free, at point of use, health service this is a major concern.

As to raising shares, there would have to be a threshold as to just how much would be needed to purchase one share, and also be determined the number of shares that would be available. As to the rest, there could be the model that is used now, just using various incentives.

As to what a persons DNA could be used for, it will not surprise me that, in the future, whether near of far, that insurance companies will be requiring DNA testing as to part of their risk determining factors. Really, what difference is this than that they want a persons family history, except that DNA is much more detailed? I could completely understand, even though I do not like it, that a company sees that a persons test results show that they have a high risk of a certain cancer, that the company would adjust their policy to that person accordingly. They can guess that now, to a much lesser extent, through other tests and surveys. It is often forgotten that an insurance company’s primary business is to make profit. If there were little or no profit in insurance, there would be very little to chose from. Now, as to how this pursuit of profit affects the price of healthcare, well, that is another subject all together.

One of my father’s favorite sayings regarding insurance is “it’s a racket and a scam.” But, unfortunately, a necessary evil.

There is a clear concern here. As long as insurance is reliant on poor information we each contribute a relatively small amount and those of us who are lucky enough to be unlikely to be the victims of disease save money.

But, those of us who are more at risk pay more.

I fully accept that if I choose to compete in a motor sport such as Speedway or choose to take drugs then that is a personal choice and I should pay more because I have the choice to live an healthier lifestyle but If I choose to live the healthiest lifestyle: I can but die early because of a genetic pre-disposition to cancer (which killed my dad) or dementia (which killed my mother) it’s not the same.

Insurance is about spreading risk: most of us pay more than we will ever get back but the few of us that get into serious trouble have the confidence that they will be taken care of. I don’t know if I am at particular risk but the knowledge that my daughter is financially secure should the worst happen comforts me.

Assuming I have a good long life any pay in more than I get out, which most of us do, I do not begrudge someone else benefiting from my money: If shit happens to me, you agree to help me out and if shit happens to you I help you out.

I agree most insurance is a scam but it depends on “can you afford to get this wrong”. If I lost my phone, I would buy a new one, I can afford to throw away the cost of a phone so I don’t insure it. If my house were to burn down I can’t afford to replace it so I have house insurance but not phone insurance.

And insurance companies already take family history into account when making individual policy decisions. DNA testing can be argued to be an extension of that. But, they have been rolling in the money already, so, one can argue, why the extra testing?

I, with unease, am waiting to see what will happen, if anything will happen, with DNA testing and insurance, or any other institution for that matter. It will be scary interesting.

Agreed, my politics are more left wing than most but: I’ve always agreed with the idea that one should take according to your needs and give according abilities.

If your needs are greater than mine I am happy to contribute but I hope if my needs are greater than yours you are happy to reciprocate.


When @jonobacon gave his genetic info to his doctor, he most likely did not pass to a for profit organisation. The tests would have performed in an NHS lab.

Well, it took a while for it to occur to me what you just said. I am slow so many times.

@WarrenHill, whether these events were recent or many years ago, you have my condolences. I certainly hope you are coping okay with this. My mother-in-law was my ‘mama’, for I loved her like my own. To quote myself when she died of heart failure: “death sucks”.

I regret that my first use of your post was for this thread and not to express my feelings for your pain. I do apologize.

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Thanks, but I’m okay my mother died in 2009 and my father in 2004. It was tough at the time but I have a wonderful daughter and we got through it together.

I agree that DSLR provide better pics than smartphones, but I have to say the increase in image quality has been quite spectacular in the last few years in the smartphone industry. I am no fan of Apple products at all, but I know the camera of their iPhones (and the software layer beneath it) is really good.

If DSLR are too heavy and smartphone don’t provide good enough pictures, an alternative are Micro four third cameras. I sold my Nikon D7000 DSLR and bought an Olympus OM-D Micro four third camera because the camera is much smaller and produces very good pictures. Of course, it’s still bigger than a smartphone, but I can put my camera in a small bag I carry with me all the time, so in the end it’s the best compromise for me.

I hate to bitch and moan about sound issues, as I know it’s hard to get it right, but this episode had a lot of sections where @bryanlunduke was talking over everyone else. I assume this was due to some sort of delay meaning Bryan didn’t realise someone else was talking rather than him thinking what he had to say was far more important, but it did make it rather tricky to listen to!

Sorry to hear that, @marxjohnson. I didn’t notice any delay issues when editing…but this may have been the case. We will try to keep an eye on it for next time.

Not quite ready for production yet, but this technology could address the smartphone optical zoom issue that @sil mentioned in this episode.


Huh. That’s pretty cool, as long as (a) it’s not BS and (b) the company can get it out into the wild (not like Qi charging).

With the camera @bryanlunduke reviewed, it still is a matter of carrying around two objects if you want half way decent photos and a phone. I had thought of this since Samsung introduced the device, why not just add a phone to this camera? It shouldn’t bulk it up too much more. It might look a little silly though.

So often I read something, such as this post, and a scripture just pops into my head. That’s just my nature. The one that this made me think of is recorded at 1 John 3:17 that says: “But whoever has the material possessions of this world and sees his brother in need and yet refuses to show him compassion, in what way does the love of God remain in him?” The very next verse stresses showing love, not just in our words, but with our actions.

Even if a person is lacking material things to help his fellow, he can still show compassion in many ways.

QI charging is out there. But you do have to get your hands dirty with some hardware hacking. Which, because I’m a sick puppy, is a feature in my book :smiley:

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