Pragmatic 112: A Mixed Bag

8 November, 2023


Vic joins John to go through a mixed bag of topics including the two most recent Apple Events, selling lenses, the new 5x iPhone Pro Max Lens, Johns day job company being potentially bought and split as well as the Soundbooth and some conference speaking.

Transcript available
Welcome to Pragmatic. Pragmatic is a show about technology and contemplating the finer details and their practical application. By exploring real-world trade-offs, we dive into how great ideas can be transformed into products and services that impact our lives. Pragmatic is entirely supported by you, our listeners. If you'd like to support us and keep the show ad-free, you can by becoming a Premium Supporter. Premium Support is available via Patreon and through the Apple Podcasts channel subscription. Premium Supporters have access to early release high-quality versions of episodes, as well as bonus material from all of our shows not available anywhere else. Just visit to learn how you can help this show to continue to be made. Thank you. I'm your host, John Chidjie, and today I'm joined once again by my good friend, Vic Hudson. How you doing, Vic? I'm doing alright, John. Been feeling a little under the weather, but pretty good. As soon as I said that, I realized asking how you're feeling, because I know how you're feeling, is actually not the best. It's probably an indelicate question. It's all good, man. I appreciate the cold and flu medication that you're taking that allows you to have a chat. So thank you very much for that. I appreciate the effort. I also appreciate it. It allows me to do more than chat. It allows me to function. Oh my goodness. Yeah. So it's been a little while since we caught up. I wanted to have a little bit of a odds and sods sort of an episode because honestly, it's been a bit of a mixed bag for me in the last few months of my life. Lots of stuff happening, not all that good. Some of which I'm not talking about really. I don't would like to, I'd rather not discuss yet. But there is a lot of stuff happening and it's made it very difficult to edit, record, do anything. So in any case, the most recent thing that I'm happy to talk about is conference speaking. So I've been doing different presentations over the years and ordinarily it's like a slide deck. So here's a slide deck and it's like, well, we did this with this thing. See slide A and something else happens. See slide B. And it's like, that's what I've done. So yes, I'm a conference speaker, but with a set of slides and I'm usually, I'm usually talking about something, whatever the hell it might be. You know, it's usually work related. It's usually bit dry, you know, I mean, obviously I'm me, but I'm not as me, me as I would be, uh, if it was something a bit more casual. So in a first for me, there was a conference and the organization's a relatively small one in the grand scheme of things. It's got a few hundred members, but, and it's based here in Australia and New Zealand, and it's called the Australian Control Room Network Association, uh, ACRNA. And they invited me to speak, uh, to be their dinner speaker. And, um, it was, it was very nice. Um, it was, uh, it was lovely of them to ask me because it's not like I'd ever done it before. And I mean, irrespective of whether or not they had a long list of potential options of people to ask, um, because I did a presentation there last year, they were impressed by that presentation. And I said, Oh, hi, would you like to be our dinner speaker? Oh, and while you're at it, could you also do another presentation this year? So I'm like, okay, sure. So I went to this conference, this conference was a couple of weeks ago now, actually about a week. Wow. Feels like longer anyway, and, uh, it was here in Brisbane, which was nice because the one I went to and presented to, uh, last year was actually in Sydney and that was in September or I think it was September last year. Yeah. But this one was here in Brisbane and it was at the Gabba, which is the, um, Brisbane cricket ground effectively. Yeah. Refreshing my, my memory. Brisbane's pretty much home, right? Oh yeah, yeah, yeah. Brisbane is home for me. Yeah. Yeah. I mean, I live just north of Brisbane. Yeah. But I, my, the CBD of Brisbane, uh, that's where the office building is and I go on there three days a week. Uh, and the Gabba is just on the other side of the river. It's on the south side of the river. Um, it's a beautiful, big, um, sports arena. And, uh, it was in the, it was in the members section, which is this very nice area. And also never been in before cause I'm not a member. So yeah, you don't get to go in there unless you're a member or I guess if you hire it out for a conference. Anyway. So I went there and I did my presentation. Everyone was happy with it. So that's great. And, um, when I, and I did the dinner presentation, so it was two 20 minute segments, uh, between courses. So between entree and main and then main and dinner. And I had no slides. I had notes and the printer I had at home at the time was dodgy. So I printed it and it had this weird, weird problem where it shadows. So the first top half of the page gets reprinted, uh, but in a very, very light gray on the bottom half of the page. So you basically get this really weird ghosting shadow effect on the bottom half of the page. So all my notes were a garbled mess. Oh, that sounds like good times. Yeah. I thought, I thought it would be, um, I thought it would be quite the, quite the struggle. But the funny thing was that when I got up there, I actually didn't feel nervous. Normally I get very nervous in the first two or three minutes of every presentation. I didn't feel that for the dinner speech at all. I, it, I felt quite relaxed and I actually hadn't had anything to drink. Not really. I think I had like one glass of very small glass of sparkling wine, like an hour and a half earlier. So I could hardly say that I was intoxicated. I was barely, barely had a drink. Anyway. So I got up there, did the presentation and, um, it went down very well. Um, had a lot of people that were very, very happy with how it went, very impressed. And a lot of people said to me, um, you know, I'll have to get you to speak at, you know, um, come and speak at any future. I'm like, okay, great. So yeah, I've actually started down the road of, um, I've updated the engineer network website and said, Hey, you want me to do speaking stuff? Then I can now say I've done a dinner presentation, a dinner, um, dinner guest speaker. That's cool. It was cool. It was cool. It was a first really, because I feel like that was different. I could never do that. Yeah. I'm kind of surprised that I actually pulled that off to be honest with you. Yeah. Um, I. Maybe you had just enough liquid courage, but not too much to sabotage the presentation. I didn't have that third drink. Yeah. That's when the trouble starts. Yes. Yes. The wisdom of Vic. You are quite correct. So yes, I, I honestly, um, yeah. So I just wanted to mention it because, um, that consumed a fair bit of time in the weeks leading up. I did a whole bunch of prep for it. Not what I talked about. It's actually, it's probably worth mentioning is that I talked about my history and how I got into engineering and the stuff that I'd done. That was relative to control rooms, of course, because it's a control room conference. I wanted to make it relevant. Right. I talked about podcasting and the things that I'd learned from podcasting, things about audio, soundproofing. You know, like that sort of stuff and how that relates to control rooms and how I've, how I've leveraged some of what I've learned in, in my day to day, my day job. Yeah. And I have actually, I've learned a lot about, um, echo reverberation and, you know, flat surfaces and what to avoid and how to, you know, like soundproofing and carpet and all that stuff. So that's been good. Um, and I then, yeah, then I did a whole, the next 20 minutes is all on causality and episodes of causality where. There were control room contributors. So that was, yeah, that was, yeah, that was good. Cool. Anyway. Um, and I talked about Milford Haven, um, which was an episode I did on pragmatic and, uh, that was a, a Texco refinery in, uh, about Milford Haven, uh, in Birmingham, sure. In, uh, in the UK. And one of the people in the audience, well, he worked for Honeywell that did the DCS at Milford Haven. And he was the one, one of them who was brought up in front of the UK health directive, which is essentially the board of inquiry on Milford Haven. And he's like, I need to talk a little bit more about some of the things you said about Milford Haven. And I'm like, Oh God. It was nothing bad. I just, I just glossed over a whole bunch of detail, but he was happy to tell me all the detail. I'd say that was just a little awkward. Yeah. But, but the thing is, as he was telling me, it was coming back to me, you've got to realize I researched Milford Haven like five or six years ago. It's quite an old episode. And so it was done in the early days of causality. That's, I was thinking that was a while back. It was quite a while back. And so when he was telling me these things, I'm like, Oh, okay. Yeah, that's right. And it came out of this line and, and, and the reason that far was because it was corroded and he sort of like nodded and he said, yes, that's right. I said, see, see, I did remember, I did. Anyway. So that was a, that was an interesting experience, but yeah. So I had inadvertently met someone that I had unknowingly idolized actually, because he was also involved with some of the standards that I've read. So it's, it's not often that you get to have a conversation with someone that contributed to a standard that you've based a lot of your work on. Yeah. It's kind of crazy. So yeah, it was good. It was a good conference. And, um, yeah, I actually enjoyed getting up and doing the dinner, dinner speaking, which was really cool. First time, uh, may well do it again. Uh, I did it gratis this time. I didn't actually charge for it. Um, cause I wasn't sure I could pull it off. Um, but yeah, now I am sure maybe next time I should charge, but anyway. There you go. Just got to figure out how much I would ask for. Don't know, $5, $10. I don't have no idea. Anyway, I'll figure that out one day. Hmm. That seems like a lot of work. Yeah. It seems like I'm underselling myself. Yeah. Just a tad. All right. I think I'd, I'd want at least a good 20. Yeah, 25. Yeah. I'd settle for a bottle of, uh, uh, Long Branch or something like that. Hmm. It's good stuff. Did you ever get to try that? I did. Yes. And I'm about a third of the way through said bottle of Long Branch is very nice. It's good stuff. So nice. Thank you for the recommendation. Yeah. It is very good stuff. Yes. All right. So since we last spoke, there have actually been two Apple events and I'm not going to do a full, I don't want to do a big, deep dive into them. Have you watched either of them or both of them? I'm just curious. I saw the first one. I have not actually gotten around to watching the spooky fast one just yet, but I am up on the machines that were released and the new chips. Thanks to some other podcast summaries. For whatever it's worth, Vic, I'm in exactly the same position as you. I did not bother to do, to look at the spooky, but fast M3 ones, because I heard the breakdown on another podcast and I'm like, well, I guess I don't need to watch the event now. So I haven't, and I'm not going to. And I think it's, I think it speaks to the fact that none of those machines are of any interest to me. And I was sort of thinking about that since we're talking about it, may as well do that one first. It's in reverse chronological order, but that's okay. Is that, I mean, I'm podcasting right now on a M2 MacBook Air and this thing is an absolutely incredible bit of kit. Yeah. It is, the keyboard is beautiful. The trackpad is beautiful. The screen is beautiful, you know, and it is so fast. There are no fans, which is why it's perfect in the sound booth because there's no noise. It doesn't make noise. Yeah. It's just a beautiful bit of equipment. My Mac studio is only an M1. I say only an M1, but I mean, it's still blisteringly fast. It's got 32 gig of RAM in it, which is plenty for what I need. Yeah. It's running a ridiculous number of Docker containers and virtual machines. And I also use it whilst it's running those machines for my everyday driver. Yeah. Editing photos, editing videos, and it does not slow down or skip a beat or get hot. Right. And it drives three, four K's displays without breaking a sweat. Yeah. So the question I asked myself is, what the heck is it going to take for me to want to ever upgrade? I mean, apart from it breaking, like if my kids come along or I come along, I'm going to go with blaming the kids, but it could be me. And I tip a vase of water over it and I'm like, hmm, I might need a new computer. So apart from that. Going to pull a Casey. Or it's spontaneously combusting. What exactly are Apple going to add that I'm going to have to have in order to upgrade? And I'm struggling, Vic. I can't think of what it would be. I kind of feel the same with my MacBook Pro. I do kind of wish I'd gotten a little more internal storage and maybe a little bit more RAM would be nice, but I'm OK. I'm not hurting for it or anything. Um, cause I just got the, I've got the N1 Pro Max 16 inch laptop, the first one and, uh, 32 gigs of RAM, which is fine for what I need. But I could see, you know, potentially bumping up against that one day, but, uh, the one terabyte of storage really kind of hurts. I mean, it doesn't hurt, but I just recently learned that my, uh, desktop iMac, the fry Mac, as I like to call it these days, cause it's still an Intel 27 inch. It's it's not getting nice. It's it doesn't get what's what's the, the latest Mac OS. What's it called now? Sonoma. That it that's it. Sonoma. Yeah. Yeah. No Sonoma for the fry Mac. So that's, that's a wake up call. It it's days are numbered. And I think I'm just going to keep using it till it dies pretty much, but I don't think I'm going to replace it. I think I'm just going to get a studio display or something when it does kill and just go back to just having the one laptop. And then I think I might feel that, that one terabyte crunch, but aside from that performance wise, I have no complaints whatsoever. And I mean, as spooky fast as those new M threes are, and they are quite impressive, but it's just, it's still, I don't have any complaints with the performance of the machine, man. I don't have a, a good reason to want to upgrade to it. No, exactly. Right. And I mean, I don't. Yeah. I just, I struggle because it's like with, um. Yeah. With Intel, they had the whole tick tock thing. Right. And you'd be like, well, I'll wait for the next. Talk. And then I do the tick tick tick talk to tick tick tick tick tick tick tick. Eventually they're going to talk. I mean, it's too soon in Apple's journey with the M threes for us to really know when the true jumps and the true leaps are going to be there. But the thing that occurred to me is, well, if you've got computers now that are so fast that it does everything you need. Then from a desktop laptop perspective, iPad perspective, probably even phone perspective, the things that sell the new phones and, and such as the, we'll talk about in a second, have nothing to do with the CPU in it. No. So. Hasn't for a long time. I mean, the new, the new CPU gains in the new phones is always nice and it is impressive, but it's been a long time since I had any of my iPhones. And I just looked at them and felt like they were too slow. Yeah. A long time. I think that. Yeah. See, I think the future is in fact going to be on the stuff that is so processor intensive. And by that, I mean, specifically the Apple vision pro it's like, that's where you're going to start seeing the really big gains. So when they put an M three or an M four in the Apple vision pro, then that will make a colossal difference. And I've got an R one, eventually it'll be an R two and an R three. It's like, that'll make a colossal difference in frame rates and, you know, the pass through speed and reducing lag and, and, and higher resolution and all of those things. That's where the future is. And it'll matter in that platform because I mean, all of those things that you're talking about, those are, those are your biggest things that cause people to have, you know, their motion sickness issues and stuff like that. Yeah, exactly. The smoother they can get those frame rates in that performance, the better. Yeah. Whereas if you look at in comparison, a desktop machine, unless you're doing heavy editing or lots of code compilation, the difference between M one and M three is irrelevant in terms of performance. You'll never notice it. Right. So in any case. Um, well, let me ask you a question. That's all well and sanitary. Uh, on your, your max studio. I know that anecdotally, I know that that thing tends to run a little warmer. Well, actually, I don't think it actually runs warmer. I think it just generates extra fan noises when I've heard for some unknown reason, but aside from just the ambient extra fan noise that it's got, have you ever really heard those fans spin up? Have you ever done anything to cause them to? No. Yeah, that's, I don't think I was talking to Ronnie the other day cause he just recently got himself a new Mac book pro. Um, I don't think I've ever heard the fans on my Mac book pro spin up. Not a single time. No, I tried really hard in order to just with, with, uh, like pushing it out with really heavy load. And it was just, it, it, nothing, nothing did it. I had to actually use TG pro, uh, which is one of those fan control, like max fan controls. Another one you can use in order to crank the speed up cause I couldn't do it. I was handbrake encoding for hours and it barely budged. It's just, wow. You know, it's incredible. I would have thought the video encoding might get it kind of close to that, but that's impressive. Nope. Not, not even, um, like I also did a whole bunch of ML stuff. So I did, uh, oh dear Mac whisper. So I had that running as well. Yeah. Multiple sessions. I had like three of them running at the same time. Nope. Did not break a sweat. Pretty impressive. I mean, it was pagan. Yeah, it was pagan CPU GPU, but it was not spinning up those fans. Yeah. Anyway. All right. I just thought, I just, I just thought it was interesting because I, cause I kept going through my mind. It's like, well, what would it take to get me to upgrade and going to an M3 is not going to do it. And I've got a perfectly good Mac book air and Mac studio. I just can't see it. That's yeah, that probably when, and if the Mac book pro dies, maybe, or I guess maybe if they, if it reaches a point where they cut off OS support, then that might be a tempting factor. But short of something like that, man, I just, I have no complaints with mine. No, no, exactly. And, and, and not a lie. So the other event was far more interesting to me. And there was only really one thing in that event that really, um, got me excited. Yeah. And it wasn't just the new iPhone 15s. It was one particular model, which is the iPhone 15 pro max. Can you hazard a guess as to why. I'm going to guess that maybe it has something to do with this 5X 120 millimeter camera you've got in the notes. Oh, I'm not supposed to say it in the notes mate. That's like. Sorry. Okay. We can fix it with editing. Perhaps. No, no. Can we fix that with editing? Oh, would you like me to play it? Yes. Do it. Can we fix that with editing? Yes, we can, Nate. Nate, the great. And, and I would just so you know, um, because I, I inflicted a spoiler on Clay and I feel bad about that even now, months later. The doctor who? Um, yeah, I still feel bad about that. Yeah. Hmm. Anyway. I don't. Clay and I haven't. You haven't spoken? Clay and I haven't spoken since. Seriously? Seriously. I mean, I said, I'm sorry. I don't. No, no, no. I doubt he's holding a grudge over it. Clay is such a lovely, nice man. He would not hold a grudge. I don't think he's capable of holding those sorts of grudges. This is just too nice. He is. But even so. Spoilers with Clay is tricky, man. It spoils with anyone is tricky. Yeah. Um, Clay really raises the bar. Like it's gotta be like 20 years old before it's safe to talk about. Uh, we love you, Clay. Anyway. So once again, sorry about that. But in terms of, um, uh, Ted Lasso, I finally watched the end of it. I still haven't seen season three. Don't, don't, don't claim me. Oh, okay. So basically what happens is getting back to the camera. All right. So yeah. So, uh, the, the one thing that the iPhone 15 pro max has that the 15 pro doesn't is it trades the three X. Camera, which is still pretty respectable for a telephoto in a smartphone for the five X, uh, telephoto. So that particular lens is, uh, it's not, well, you can call it a periscope lens if you'd like to, or it's a prismatic lens. However you want to do it. Um, it's a bunch of light bouncing through some prisms to increase the effective length of the lens. And, uh, it just makes it a little bit chunkier or chunkier as my kids prefer to say. Chunkier. I don't get that. Yeah. You just put an O instead of a U and it's a new word. Chunky. Kids these days. Anyway, chunky. So the cat's not chunky. She's chunky. Um, apparently anyway. Yeah. Let's see. Yeah. My kids. Anyway. So, um, it has an effective focal length of 120 millimetres. Now in a smartphone, that's insane. Yeah. Like I have lenses and I'll talk a little bit about my lenses shortly, but, and why I'm doing what I'm doing. And this will make Clay sad, actually more sad than the spoiler potentially. Um, but 120 mil camera. So I've currently only got two lenses, um, that cover that range. So I've got a 24 to 200 millimetre, um, F 5.6 to 6.3. Um, well, super zoom essentially. And then I've got the old, um, Nikon 20, 200 to 500, what I call a novelty lens. So those are the only two lenses that cover that or beyond all my other lenses are much shorter than that. So the other next nearest I've got is an 85. Yeah. As, as, as a camera idiot, these numbers don't mean anything to me. This, this 120 millimetres is, is that what I need to reach the moon or is that still not quite there? Nowhere near it. So, all right. Um, when, when you take a photo with a standard film camera. Right. That will generally have the 35 millimetre film lens equivalent. That is essentially, if you take a photo of the street and the city streets, uh, view of a street, it'll capture a large amount of detail of that street. Right. You can do portrait shots with it, but it will take in multiple people. 35 millimetres. That's. Yeah. Representing the distance between the lens and the sensor. It's more complicated than that. Um, there is an episode of pragmatic on photography that explains it, but let's put it this way. Everything's relative to 35 millimetres. So. Okay. If you have a lens that is. That's the baseline. So let's say it's 24 millimetres or 20 millimetres or 10 millimetres that becomes what they call wide, a wide angle lens or. Right. Ultra wide angle lens. Right. So the smaller the number, the wider the angle. Yeah. I know that. Cause it's like, it's like looking through a longer or a shorter tube. Sure. Yeah. Think of it like that. Yeah. And then once you go to 85 millimetres, 85 millimetres means that you're going to zoom in closer. And by the time you get to a hundred, it's a little bit closer, 120, it's even closer. So that's why they call them a zoom lens. Sometimes they'll call them a telephoto. Yeah. Yeah. So 120 millimetre lens. So what do you reckon. Is decent zoom. Like Clay, when he posts his moonshots, what do you reckon the reaches on that? What, what millimetre would you estimate that is? I'm just looking for something to give me a comparison. The super closeups of the moon will be in like 600 millimetres, 800 millimetres. Okay. Yeah. So not even quite a fourth of that. No. Okay. No, no, no. The moon is a decent distance away. Yeah. So you need a decent zoom on it. Yeah. I knew that. I just, I didn't know how much is how much. So you can get these super zoom. But this is quite an impressive number for a phone camera. Oh yeah, absolutely. Yeah. To the best of my knowledge, it's the, it's the longest lens on a standard smartphone. So I'm, I'm very impressed. Um, so much so that I'm going to buy one. I haven't got it yet, but it is, it is on my list. Yeah. And in order to afford it, I have decided. Oh boy. That I am going to sell my oldest lenses. Oh boy. And this is the part, yeah, this is the part that where Clay gets sad. Look away Clay. So the aforementioned 200, 200 to 500 millimetre, what I used to call a novelty lens, the, the ultra telephoto. Um, that is sold. It is, I no longer have it. It's gone. Uh, it's sold within two days. Mm. Um, I also have the Nikon F mount to Z mount adapter or the FTZ adapter for short. That has also been sold. Mm. That sold within a week. My ultra wide, which is a Tamron 11 to 11, 11 to 16 millimetre ultra wide, uh, Zen, uh, zoom lens. That has still not sold yet, but it will be next. And then once I've sold that all of my old F mount lenses will be sold. And I will now only have said mount lenses. The downside is that I will have nothing longer than 120 millimetres is for a camera lens. Once I get the iPhone 15 pro max, but that'll just have to do for a year or two. And eventually I will get a 180 to 600 millimetre Nikon Z. Um. That's cool. Lens to replace that in the longer term. But the reason I'm doing this is because I was only using the super really long telephotos for cricket. Mm. And honestly, I've been taking photos of cricket now for like five years, well, well, four years anyway, with that lens. And I just a bit over it. Yeah. So I, I stopped, yeah, I stopped taking it to games and I just sat there and watch the game. I know right. Watch the game. Funny that. Play, be present in the moment. Exactly. Yeah. So that's the sort of thing my wife would say. So can you just be present? I'm like, yes, I am. Absolutely. I just, let me take another photo. Anyway. The curse of being a nerd. We all hear it, man. Yeah, I know. She's not wrong. She is not wrong. She's not wrong. No, she is not wrong. And in fact, if you ask her, she's in fact, never wrong, but nevermind. That's a different topic. That's a different topic. Let's not peel that onion. Anywho. Um, yeah, so, but this, I've been taking a lot more photos of basketball cause three of my boys play basketball. And so with basketball, I don't, I can't use the novelty lens because it's, it's too long. It's like, it zooms in so close. Like it's. You need something wider. It becomes too tight. Yeah. Yes. And so 120 millimetres is perfect. So if I sit in the middle of the court, uh, or even the other end of the court, I'll still get possible photos from the other end. Now I know it's not the best in low light, but if you're taking video, it's less of a concern. Yeah. So the whole thinking is, and this is another one of those funny things. When I go and take photos at the basketball, if I have a camera camera, as in like my Nikon Z six two, or if I had a Canon EOS or whatever I had, I have to go on register, show my driver's licence, name, number, contact, all that stuff. And otherwise you're not allowed to take photos. Really? Now, yes, really. I guess. I'm not joking. This is like for safety concerns. Yes. They want to know. Um. If there's a whole bunch. Cameras and stuff. Yeah. That's the intent. The rule is in fact quite old. It's been around for about 20 years. But of course, something's happened in the last 20 years is that people have had smartphones now that have got cameras in them. But the thinking is that the cameras and smartphones don't have enough reach and they're not good enough. So all you're going to get is grainy pixelated photos until now. And so now it's possible to get a iPhone 15 pro max or a top of the line, um, you know, pixel, like Google, a pixel phone. Yeah. And it'll take decent photos and video from a smartphone. And not have to jump through all those hoops. But they do not require you to jump through those hoops. Exactly. Now, do you jump through those hoops on a game by game basis? Do you just like reggie yourself once a season or, oh, it's every time. No, it's every, every single game. And so they know me now so well. It gets very tiring, but they know me so well. I walk in there and I say, oh, Hey John. And then they just slide the book across the table at me. You know, the drill. I'm like, yes, I know the drill. Yeah. But they all know me. I'm on a first name basis with most of them now anyway. So they don't know me. I've been gone there now for like four or five years. So they know me, but irrespective, it's a pain in the butt. And so I wanted to get a phone, have it in my pocket and be able to take short videos or photos of the boys playing. Uh, basketball without having to jump through the hoops. And I'll always have it with me because now we're reaching that point. And we had this conversation years ago, um, about, you know, the whole, what's a camera, what's not a camera. And if you can get decent quality. Yeah. The best camera being the one that you actually have with you. Exactly. Right. That whole thing. Yeah. That whole thing. Anyway. So there is one other thing though, that is causing me to do this. One of the things that is happening, um, and this is public knowledge, so I can talk about this is that, uh, several months ago, the company that I work for, um, a consortium placed a non-binding, um, proposal on the table to purchase the company. If successful, they will take the company and split it into two pieces and two separate sub companies will run one of them and one company will run the other part of it. So this whole situation means that everybody is all very much on edge because we don't know what this is going to mean for our jobs. Right. Um, and we've been going down the road of cleaning up contracts and contract terms. Mm. Uh, the deadline for signing the new contracts is next week. Mm. And a lot of people freaked out when they read it. Yeah. Uh, not my, not my first rodeo and I have read plenty of contracts. In fact, I've even written contracts, certain contracts. Yeah. In the past, been a while, but I'm pretty good at reading legalese. And, um, one of the clauses in there was about the right to be supervised and, you know, during COVID. The right to be supervised. Yeah. Um, of devices. So if you use a company device, if you work in a company location, they reserve the right to essentially record everything that you do, everything from key loggers to video. Mm. Now I have used my own laptop mainly because the work top of the laptops provided by the company are absolute crap. Right. They're terrible. There are, this is terrible. Um, so my Mac book air absolutely craps on the IT stuff. So I still have sovereignty over my laptop. They can't install something on here unless I let them and I'm not going to let them. Nice. And that's been the case for years. That is not the case with my phone. Oh. So many, many. Yeah. So many, many years ago I had two phones. I had my own personal phone. My last personal phone I had was an iPhone six S plus. Oh, it's been a while back. It has been a while. And then I also had a work phone. So what I would do is I'd forward my work phone to my iPhone six S plus and my watch was tethered to that phone and it was a bit awkward. But then when my success plus died and it came time to do I have the money and I'm cash was strapped at the time. So instead what I did is I just used the dual SIM feature and I've had a couple of work phones progressively over the years as I've gotten older to my current one, which is iPhone 12. But it is a company issued phone and everything I do on it is monitored by the company. Yeah. I say everything in air quotes. I mean, it's not everything, everything, but it's enough to be really annoying. And with the signing of the new contract, it's become very clear that they are going further, not less. Yeah. So they're going to be doing more supervision. Might be tailing your old phone. Surveillance, monitoring. Correct. So that's the other contributing factor. So yeah. So that's, that's the other thing is prying on my mind. Yeah. Um, amongst many other things, of course, but yeah. So the environment at work at the moment is quite tense. There's a lot of people who are very concerned about their jobs. I could imagine. Yeah. Uh, but there is no indication yet what the new owners are going to do, or even if it's going to be approved because it's a publicly listed company. Therefore it has to pass a shareholder majority vote. And there's a, also a clause in there about shareholder vote participation. So vote participation is less than a certain threshold, irrespective of the outcome, it will not be accepted. So there's some interesting clauses in there. So it's going to be interesting to see what they do, but I think that it is inevitable. And I think that during COVID a lot of companies started with a lot of surveillance on individuals and their equipment, whether or not it's company supplied. Uh, it's like if you're doing stuff on your own time and it's on company equipment, it's always been a bad idea. Yeah. Um, because then a company can claim they own it, but, but installing monitoring software to prove it is becoming very commonplace. Yeah. And, uh, it's almost quite the invasion of privacy, but the argument from a company is, well, I'm giving you this equipment. Yeah. And the counter argument is, well, you're forcing me to use this equipment because you won't let me bring my own. Yeah. So. But then their, their counter argument is, well, you could always just wait until you're off work and use your own equipment to do your own projects. You don't have to do it on ours. Yeah. It's, it's a very nuanced argument, a lot of complicated factors. You're right. It is. Yeah. That, and you know what, you're right. That is a fair point. And I'm not necessarily saying that. I guess my problem is that I know that in, in several cases in Silicon Valley, people that were doing like all they do is check. Yeah. Like one thing on their work machine. And they use that in court to take ownership of this other person's work that they had done. Right. Entirely on their own time. Yeah. It's, it's, it's difficult to enforce by law. Um, it's much harder to enforce by law in Australia than it is in somewhere like the United States where there is so much litigation. That's good. But yeah, having said that though, it's also not impossible. Yeah. So anyway, um, so yeah, stressful times at work for the, for those people that have been in the company for a long time, looking at each other. Yeah. Are we going to have jobs next year? We don't know. We just don't know. But as for me, uh, regaining that, um, independence or self sovereignty to an extent, uh, is now suddenly very, very appealing. Hence why I've made the decisions that I have. I can imagine. Yeah. Anyway. All right. So did you have any other thoughts about that other Apple event before we keep going? Cause I, um, that was all I really. No. No, the, the, the Pro Max is, is very tempting to me, but I just got the 14 Pro Max last year. So. Yeah. Kind of. Exactly. I mean, that 120 millimeter camera would be really nice, but I'm not a photographer by any, any means. But that, that camera would be really nice. But what I really kicked myself about man is that stupid USB-C port. If I had waited one more year, I mean, my 10 S max was getting pretty long in the tooth. And, and last year, AT&T and Apple were offering crazy trade in deals. I got like 800 bucks off of the 14 Pro Max for turning in my 10 S max. So that was almost, I guess for me, it was too good to pass up because I took advantage of it. So. Oh yeah. But. Yeah. I understand. Yeah. But when I do upgrade again next, it's going to be nice to finally have USB-C and who knows by then, maybe they'll have that periscope lens. Everybody's been talking about, and I can reach the moon with an iPhone camera. Um, yeah, I will hold your breath on that one. Okay. No, anyway, that's okay. Be a while before I can do that. There's certain laws of physics. They're a lot harder to bend. Yeah. Uh, anyway, um, yes. So, uh, yeah, I guess that's the other thing about the, uh, the 15 is worth mentioning is the USB-C. And one of the great things is that I can take video now, plug in the external USB hard drive and record direct to the hard drive, you know, like essentially, uh, analog video. So you can then do your color grading later, which is something that I've never done, but it is something that now I understand why you would want to do that. I can see why people want to do that and I will be able to do that if I ever want to. Yeah. But I might. That frees up a lot of options, man. Cause you could just get, you know, a decent length USB-C cable and, and stuff, a flash drive in your back pocket or whatever. And you're not limited by the space on your phone anymore. Exactly. And there was a rather enterprising videographer that took his iPhone 15 pro max and pulled together a rig that had absolutely everything, including a video monitor. I, um, yeah, an external microphone as well as an external drive and a battery pack essentially to power the phone, all the ancillary equipment, um, as well as a mixer and everything to record the audio. And he was all doing it with one iPhone through the one USB-C port because you just, you plug it into a USB-C hub and it just works. Yeah. As you would expect it to. Yeah. Kind of impressive. Yeah. From what I understand that spooky fast event was filmed entirely on those two. Yeah. I heard that. That's true. Yeah. So yeah, very, very cool. So yeah, I haven't got one yet, but it is on the list and I have ordered a leather case, which is the Nomad goods, um, modern leather case because I went into an Apple store and I felt the fine woven case. Not interested. And like many people I said, what the is this. Um, not buying that. Yeah. So for effectively the almost exact same amount of money, I got a leather case and my money went to Nomad goods. So I hope Apple is happy with, um, with losing money for the sake of, you know, see, I mean, the smart thing to do would have been to give people a choice. Yeah. It would have been to phase one out. Yeah. It's like, here's the leather cases. We're going to do a batch of them. And now we're going to offer fine woven cases for people that are concerned about using leather. Yeah. Now, if you're not concerned about using leather, here's a leather case. Yeah. But they get, you know, they got their whole green initiative going, which is very commendable. And just generally speaking, they've been taking it. They've really been taking some heat about leather cases for the last few years. Like clay went on a rant and I message last year when I bought the leather case for my phone, uh, and, and other people have, have gone on rants too. You know, that they can't believe Apple still selling leather cases for phones. Well, you know what? That's fine. I get it. And if that makes me the jerk for buying something that's made of a piece of a, of a dead animal, then fine. What about like my Tesla? Uh, no, I'm right there with you. I mean, given, given the choices that I have available to me right now, if I bought one of these phones, I'd probably search for a good third part. Well, okay. My Tesla has got, um, white, not real leather seats. You know, it's that plush leather material. We call it pleather. It feels like pleather. Yeah. It feels like leather, but it's not. Right. So it's artificial, does not come from an animal, but it is to the touch, very similar to leather. Now, why the hell didn't Apple make a case like that? Yeah, they could go that route. If those sorts of cases existed, I would have bought one of them. Yeah. But no, they don't. So it's like people want the material to feel the way the material works, the way they want material to feel the way they want it to feel and have the characteristics that they wanted to have. Right. Now they got rid of the leather case and didn't really give a decent substitute. Yeah. So they need to be doing a pleather or fake leather and say, Hey, see this, it's fake leather, but it's not actually leather. And you're going to love it. And I would have probably loved it and I would have bought that. Yeah. But instead I got this. The fine one. So I don't know. Which by all accounts so far, it doesn't seem to be too fine. No. And once you scratch it, not particularly woven either. I mean, when you go in there. Yeah. You go into the, you go to the Apple store and you can see there's, they're all up on those little magnetic thing, magnetic holders. Right. So there's a grid of them on the wall and every damn one of them had a whole bunch of fingernail marks all the way up and down them and crisscrossing them. Yeah. Cause everyone went in there and said, Ooh, I wonder how much this does actually scratch. Yeah. Yep. That's pretty bad. Not buying that rubbish. Yeah. And that's it. And it, but to me, it wasn't even that, that put me off. It was just how it felt. Yeah. It felt tacky, it felt cheap. And it's like, I'm not paying in Australian dollars at 79 bucks. I'm not paying $79 for a case that feels like rubbish. Yeah. I don't care if it marks easily. It just feels terrible. Yeah. It was slippery and it was uncomfortable. I just did not like it. Yeah. Anyway. So there you go. Um, I will probably end up having a case without a phone to go in it for a little while, but that's okay. Supply chain is catching up. Anyway. All right. Anything more about the Apple events? Cause that's all I had. No. All right. So I want to talk a little bit about the sound booth in a minute, but there's something else that's been going on as well in my life that I, I can talk a little bit about, but I can't talk about in too much detail because it is still in the hands of the insurance companies. Anyway. So I mentioned it simply because, um, yeah. And there's other things going on as well. It's not, it's, there has not been a good year anyway. I don't even know if I should be talking about this on the episode. Anyway. Got to be very frustrating. It's it is. It's it's just. Yeah. So anyway, um, yeah, moving on. So the last thing I want to talk about is about the sound booth. Yes. Cause I realized that whilst we did talk about this on, is this the show? Um, I haven't spoken about on pragmatic. So I wanted to just give a real quick walkthrough as to what I've done and why. And I know Vicki, you've heard most of this before, but for the sake of listeners of this show that don't listen to, is this a show that's fine. This will be the high level. If you want to go down to the nitty gritty, you can always go and listen to that episode. There'll be a link in the show notes, but. Yeah. So a few months ago. It's cool to listen to it, man. This is a great project. It sounds like a really fun project. Yeah, it was. And, um, so what I've done is I built my own sound booth. And the reason I built a sound booth is because I have four kids, two cats and, um, and well, my wife as well, obviously there's a lot of people, a lot of noise, a lot of activity in the house. And it's gotten worse as they've gotten older, not better. So. Yeah. That my son and daughter have jobs. They come and go at all hours because they do, um, you know, late nights, um, light shifts and, uh, and opens early morning starts and such. They go to university. It's extremely difficult to record in, in my favourite, um, in the study area, which has no door. It's also impossible to put up a lot of soundproofing in that room. And I can't always use the walk-in wardrobe, which I generally use for recording solo shows because it's still too noisy in there. Yeah. And it's also gets very hot in summer. Yeah. Anyway. So I decided to build my own, my own sound booth. And the sound booth is actually in the external shed, which is, you know, what we discussed previously, you would call a garage and it is technically a garage, but it's got a work shed plus two car spaces. So it's kind of a, it called a shed, whatever the sound booth itself is separate from the house, but it's tethered to the house. Um, I've got a power line, a wide power line, ethernet adapter, a TP link AV 2000. And, uh, I'm using that right now. I'm standing in the sound booth. It's tethered out through my MacBook air out through wide, because of course it's a steel shed and that's a great Faraday cage. So wifi isn't going to work 3g, 4g, 5g, LTE, none of that's going to work. You have no bars. So I'm inside a box. No bars. Zero bars. Zero bars. So, um, this sound booth, um, what I did is I've just moved everything into it and some stuff I bought new, but I also relocate a lot of it. So I'm still using the mix pre three. To do the mixing and recording. I'm still using my beloved EVRE 20 microphone. I'm also still using my three zero nine a shock mount for said RE 20, but I did purchase a road PS one plus a boom arm. And I got the plus because it could handle the heavier weight, which you need. Cause the RE 20 is quite a heavy microphone. And I then bought a bracket to mount. Sorry, I didn't buy a bracket. I took the bracket that came with it and I modified it so that I could drill it into one of the studs in the wall inside the sound booth to hold it up. So I can get that in the perfect position. So the whole thing is built out of, it's a pine frame. Um, basically in, it's a 45 millimeter by 90 millimeter, which is close enough to two by four. Um, so I called that if you like. Um, and, uh, the, each of those links are 2.4 meters, whatever that is in feets, apologies. And, uh, so the whole booth is actually two points. It's okay. I speak meters. I know, I know. I'm just thinking of the other listeners, but. I prefer them actually. Yeah. It's, it's easier. I'm, I'm in the crowd that wishes we had the met, we used to metric system. Yeah. It's so much easier to like divide, multiply and so on and so forth. You don't have to remember things like how many feet in a. Got to love some base tier and no fractions. Exactly. Yeah. Fractions suck, but anyway, they're mine. That, um, yeah. So this thing's like 2.4 meters high, roughly interior dimensions. So it's quite airy inside. Like there's quite a decent space up to the ceiling, which is really good. You don't feel claustrophobic in here. Um, and the whole space is about 1.2 meters square. So there's plenty of room for me to stand in the middle. I can move my arms around and I can turn around and it's actually quite relatively spacious, but there's still only really room for one person comfortably in here. I mean, you could fit a second person, but it's going to be super tight and not pleasant. Yeah. Uh, so I built the exterior, the exterior walls, uh, just a, um, particle board and the interior walls are just drywall. And in between them, I put soundproofing insulation. And, um, then I painted it with a latex based paint on, on was technically it's water based paint actually, but it's a, it's like an enamel, but it's a water based enamel. So it's not a traditional. And the reason I didn't use a traditional enamel is because whilst it would be harder wearing, it's not quite as good for acoustics. And of course it has a really lingering smell, which in an enclosed space. Yeah. Probably would have made it unusable for a long period of time while, while that dissipated. Till it really vented out. Yeah. Yeah. So I bought myself a, um, a bracket. Um, so I forget the model number off the top of my head, but it's a bracket that holds the laptop and it has essentially three shelf levels. One for the laptop at the top. Um, one in the middle for the MixPre 3 and then one at the bottom for the nano control and nano pad. Yeah. Uh, so I can change the slider volumes and everything like that. Cool. Uh, for lighting in the room, I've got a couple of, um, video lights that I'm using that are just USB-C battery powered. They do the job. Yeah. They create light. But to be perfectly honest, the light from the laptop screen is generally more than enough. It's only, I only really use them if I'm doing video in here, which I haven't done too much of yet. Yeah. So honestly, uh, oh yeah, that's right. The other thing is, um, I bought some, uh, acoustic foam for bass trapping and I put in one set of it. And then I put, I've got some other very, very basic, cheap acoustic foam, uh, from AliExpress, um, that came from somewhere in China. Um, I put enough on there to do the ceiling and the, the two of the four walls are totally covered and the front wall is partly covered, but I've got nothing on the back wall yet. Cause I ran out. I bought a second set of bass traps cause I didn't like the bass response in the space. It was just not, not good enough for what I wanted to do. You don't want the bass to escape. Trapping. Well, it just, it makes a really bad sound and I've done a whole bunch of comparison audio. I haven't actually released it yet, but I'm going to do a video that, that, that goes through all of that. And, uh. That's cool. Just what I've learned about it. I'll put some nice carpet down, just some plush carpet to help absorb that noise and the whole thing sitting on some rubber mats to try and isolate it from the slab. Yeah. So the only thing that is not finished is, um, I do have an air conditioner, but it is rather loud and I have actually used it to cool down the space before I started. But as it is right now, the sweat is pouring off me. It is rather warm and it is a warm day or while it's now night, nearly, what is it now? Half, half 11. Yeah. So it's, it's getting late. Yeah. But the point is that it's still quite warm tonight and it gets very warm in this room with my body heat and my breathing. So it's not pleasant. So what I need to do is I need to build some baffle boxes. Right. That will allow me to pass air conditioned air into the room, drop the speed of the air down. So that doesn't make noise and then have another baffle box for the outlet. Right. But all of that, um, costs money. And at the moment with everything else going on in my world, um, I've had to change my priorities. Yeah. So the entirety of this sound booth, I've been saving up for this for a long time. I've been designing this in my, my head and, you know, I've been sketching this up on in good notes and, uh, gradually buying stuff. The entire booth has been funded, um, through patrons of the engineer network. And. That's awesome. Yeah. And I'm, I'm so very grateful for that because it's given me an independent recording environment and it's not quite done yet, but it is still very, very good and better than what I had. Yeah. And it allows me more of that recording flexibility. And the rest of my life wasn't the show that it was, I'd be using it a lot more often. Yeah. I think Scott will see referred to the sound booth as my accountability buddy. Well, yeah, I wish it was that simple. Yeah. Anyway. I just have two questions. So yeah. Um, yeah. Number one, have you painted this thing to look like a police box yet? No, I have not. Okay. Number two, is the family threatening to move you outside into it yet? Not just, not just yet. No. Okay. And I haven't been buried in the sound booth yet either, which was the other suggestion you made last time. They could wrap it with chains and lock you in. That's it. Yeah, no, that is, uh, that is also not yet happened. So no, it's, um, it's been really good. Um. You know, you're really in trouble if somebody drills a hole in concrete or water starts pouring. Yeah, that's true. Um, the other thing that's been really good about recording in the sound booth is that, um, I'm no longer disturbing the family. Right. So when I come to record out here, they don't know that I'm recording cause it's completely separate from the house. It's completely isolated. You can't hear me. They can't, I can't hear them. They can't hear me. Um, whereas previously, even when I was recording in the, um, walk-in wardrobe. Yeah. You could still hear me recording, um, in a study it was even louder. Yeah. So my wife couldn't sleep, like the kids couldn't sleep. So when I did late night recordings, um, it was often a tense moment. Yeah. So this has given me the ability to do this, um, whenever I want. So all I need to do is, um. You just gotta be quiet is just sneak back into the house when you're done. Oh, pretty much. Yeah. So at this point, um, probably probably another six to nine months time, uh, I will have then enough money to start building the baffle boxes and connecting up the air conditioner that I've got until then I'll be doing batch cooling, which is to say, run it, chill down the booth and then use it. Uh, once the temperature gets too hot. Yeah. Run the air conditioner again and so on. And it doesn't work for a, a podcast like pragmatic, but it does definitely work. Um. For your soul. Causality. Audio books. Take a break. Analytical. To, and yeah, take a break when you need to cool it down and then go back at it. Exactly. Yeah. All right. So that's, that's it. Um, I didn't want to have a super long, uh, episode. I just wanted to give people a bit of an update as to what's going on in my, in my world, my life, and, uh, talk a bit about the sound booth cause I hadn't on pragmatic yet. And, um, I'm, I'm almost finished the notes for an episode of, um, of causality too, actually. Sweet. Um, but yeah, the, um, all the prep I was doing for the conference kind of derailed a lot of that. Yeah. Cause, um, yeah, there you go. It's fascinating to hear about this booth though. I really liked this project. Yeah. It's pretty cool. I am disappointed. It doesn't look like a police box though. It's on the list, mate, but paint ain't cheap. Speaking of box man, this month, the doctor's coming. I know, right. Something will happen with something to do with Dr. Who, but I can't say in case certain people might anyway. Yeah. If you, um, if you want to. Hmm. So if you want to talk more about this, you can reach me on the fediverse at chigi at engineer dot space or the network at eng net at engineer dot space. If you're enjoying pragmatic and you'd like to support us and keep the show ad free, you can, by becoming a premium supporter, just visit engineer dot network slash pragmatic to learn how you can help this show to continue to be made. Thank you. A big thank you to all of our supporters. A special thank you to our silver producers, Mitch Bilger, Shane O'Neill, Leslie, Kellen, Fredelius, Fujimoto, Jared Roman, Joel Mar, Katarina Will, Dave Jones, and Chad during, and an extra special thank you to our gold producer, Steven bridal and our gold producer known only as R. If you'd like to get in touch with Vic, what's the best way to get in touch with you, mate? Uh, I am still on the Twitter, AKA the X, but I'm not very active there anymore. But, uh, I'm a big Hudson one there and you can also find me as a big Hudson one at app dot net. On the, on, on, on. First dot is written. The second dot is a dot. That is correct. On the Fediverse there. My God. I never, I never, what possessed them to do that? I don't know. App dot net. I make it. It's almost like Morse code. Yeah. Oh my goodness. Me. No. All right, cool. Well, it's good to hear that you still flying around on the Fediverse, which is where everyone should be. Get off X. Oh my goodness. It is a train wreck. Anyway, moving on. Oh, I say moving on. That's it. Wow. There you go. All right. Well, a special. I use it. I use it so I can keep up with jelly. Bowl man. You gotta have jelly. Oh dear. All right. A special thank you to all of our supporters and a big thank you to everyone for listening. And as always, thank you, Vic. It's always a pleasure having you on. Thank you. Oh, yeah. Nutella spread, Nutella pie, Nutella donut, Nutella donut, Nutella donut, Nutella donut, Nutella donut, Nutella pie, Nutella donut, Nutella donut, Nutella donut, Nutella donut, You you
Duration 1 hour and 37 seconds Direct Download

Show Notes

This show is Podcasting 2.0 Enhanced

Links of Potential Interest:

Episode Gold Producers: 'r' and Steven Bridle.
Episode Silver Producers: Mitch Biegler, Shane O'Neill, Lesley, Jared Roman, Joel Maher, Katharina Will, Dave Jones, Kellen Frodelius-Fujimoto and Chad Juehring.
Premium supporters have access to high-quality, early released episodes with a full back-catalogues of previous episodes


Vic Hudson

Vic Hudson

Vic is the host of the App Story Podcast and is the developer behind Money Pilot for iOS.

John Chidgey

John Chidgey

John is an Electrical, Instrumentation and Control Systems Engineer, software developer, podcaster, vocal actor and runs TechDistortion and the Engineered Network. John is a Chartered Professional Engineer in both Electrical Engineering and Information, Telecommunications and Electronics Engineering (ITEE) and a semi-regular conference speaker.

John has produced and appeared on many podcasts including Pragmatic and Causality and is available for hire for Vocal Acting or advertising. He has experience and interest in HMI Design, Alarm Management, Cyber-security and Root Cause Analysis.

Described as the David Attenborough of disasters, and a Dreamy Narrator with Great Pipes by the Podfather Adam Curry.

You can find him on the Fediverse and on Twitter.