KW1004 Microsoft Surface Pro 3

This week’s show is an in-depth look at the Surface Pro 3 from Microsoft. We tackle the hardware, the software and the applications that make this device a contender for a daily driver. We also have another great track from Daniel Messer. Let’s get into it!

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KW1003 Acer Green

This week Knightwise travels to the Acer Green show and brings a couple of interviews with from the show floor as well as some “live” music.

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KW1002 Storytime

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This week’s edition of the Knightwise.com podcast brings another installment of Storytime. Sit back and relax to some tunes selected by the Cyberpunk Librarian, Daniel Messer, and two stories from the archives: “Offline” and “When Wanting is More Pleasing than Having”.

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KW1001 First impressions of the Ubuntu Phone

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We kick off season 10 of the Knightwise.com podcast with a hands on review of the BQ Ubuntu Phone. We review the hardware, talk about the fledgling OS and see how the phone holds up in “daily use”. Splice in some cool tunes selected by Daniel Mesner and you have yourself the first episode of the Knightwise.com podcast, season 10.

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“Whats in your bag week” Day 3 : Matt McGraw

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Matt McGraw is a full time, at home dad in Northern California, USA. He has 3 awesome kids and the most beautiful wife in the world. In his free time… never mind, he doesn’t have free time. When his kids are sleeping he writes at g33kdad.thestrangeland.net and tries to put out 2 episodes of his podcast, The G33k Dad Show! each month. You can follow him on twitter @sahg33kdad and on Google+ at google.com/+MattMcGraw.

Greetings Wisegirls and Wiseguys!  This is Matt, the Stay at Home G33k Dad from Northern California, USA. Knightwise has committed a grave error and asked me to contribute a guest post for What’s In My Bag week, so here is my contribution. There is a photo of my stuff laid out on the floor which accompanies this article, so I’ll just go through it now.

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First off, the bag itself. It is a messenger-style bag with a zippered main compartment, a zippered, exterior compartment at each end, and 4 large pockets surrounding the main pocket inside the bag. As I am the Geek Dad, this bag is, in fact, a repurposed diaper bag. We got several diaper bags with our two kids and this particular one was never used, so I decided to use it for my tech bag. As an added bonus, one of the end pockets is designed to transport a bottle, so it is insulated! You will most often find either a bottle of water or a bottle of Diet Mtn. Dew in this pocket.

Moving on to gear, you will notice I am a mobile type of guy. Front and center is my mobile phone, an LG G3 on the Sprint network. We recently (last week at the time of writing this) switched from Verizon to Sprint. I left my Galaxy S3 behind and moved on to the G3. I love the phone, the only downside is battery life. To combat this, I turn the brightness way down and I have associated my calendar and contacts with my ownCloud server running on Digital Ocean. Using calDav and cardDav, I have all the functionality I need and, for some reason, the fewer Google services I use, the longer my battery lasts! Along with my phone are a pair of earbuds which I use to listen to music and podcasts while driving or on the treadmill, and a micro-fiber cleaning cloth for all my devices (and my sunglasses)

The item at center left, is my kindle. I am an avid reader and I love my ebooks. I have the kindle app on my phone, too. With the kindle are a micro usb cable along with a 110 volt wall charger and a 12 volt car charger. These will charge both my phone and my kindle.

Continuing clockwise, you will see a small tripod and a mount that holds a cell phone. I keep this so I have a place to set up my phone if I want to watch a video or if I want to use skype or google hangouts for a video call.

Next to that is a notebook with a mechanical pencil for those rare occasions when I want to jot down an “analog” note. Above this is a collection of cables including a usb extension cable, a 1/8″ stereo patch cable and a full size HDMI cable. I use these along with my…

Acer C720 Chromebook which you see in the middle of the photo, sitting on top of a Case Logic sleave-style case. You may also notice, sitting on the chromebook, is a stack of business cards. These are for my website and podcast. (http://g33kdad.thestrangeland.net) I love my chromebook. In fact, I am writing this blog post on it right now. Just about everything I do, I do on the web so I live in a browser; this includes writing, social networks, managing websites, and general organisation of my disorganised life. My friend and co-guest blogger, Daniel Messer, The Cyberpunk Librarian, says his favourite operating system is Firefox. In keeping with the slider ethos, he runs firefox on Mac, Linux, and Windows and is able to keep all his data synced and sliding. I feel the same way about Chrome. I run it on my linux laptops and of course, on my chromebook. I do run Chrome OS on my chromebook, by the way. Many people suggest that the best use for a chromebook is installing an open source bios and running linux on it; someday I may do that. However, I like keeping this machine lean and nimble. And with 2 minor exceptions, it does everything I want it to do. Those exceptions are Skype and audio recording/editing. When I record my podcast or an episode for Hacker Public Radio, I use Ubuntu and run Audacity.

Rounding out my bag is a stack of USB flash drives and a 300GB Western Digital USB hard drive. I have LOTS of USB sticks. I have one that simply runs TAILS linux, so I can boot into an anonymous OS. Another is set up with Multiboot so I can carry clonezilla, system rescue cd, super grub disk, as well as a couple of Linux distribution ISOs. I have one stick that just contains media; like music and movies. I also have a couple just for whatever. I subscribe to the theory of redundancy which states, if it doesn’t exist in three places, it doesn’t exist. To that end, I always have plenty of storage media with me.

So, that wraps up “what’s in my bag.” I carry this bag almost every day. It is very comfortable and it serves my purposes quite well. I do swap some things out… or add in my waterproof, digital point and shoot camera from time to time. But, for the most part, what you see is what I carry. You may notice I do not carry a charging rig for the chromebook. That is mainly because this machine gets days of battery life. If I am traveling extendedly out of town, it is easy to slip the charger into the mix.

Thanks for checking out my post. If you want to find more of me, visit my website at http://g33kdad.thestrangeland.net. There you will find articles on the intersection of technology and parenting and also my fledgling podcast, The G33k Dad Show! Take care all, and I’ll see you in cyberspace.

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kw802 : Storytime.

Its storytime again on the Knightwise.com podcast. We bring together some awesome tunes and two great stories from the blog. Sit back, relax and enjoy our two columns ” I’m not a Gamer ” and ” Privacy is a statement” 

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– Privacy is a statement (original article : http://knightwise.com/column-privacy-is-a-statement/)
– I’m not a gamer (original article : http://knightwise.com/column-im-not-a-gamer-im-just-retro/)

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Aural Planet : Hydropoetry Cathedral.
Puff Dragon: Chinese_Radio.

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Free book/podcast : When sysadmins ruled the earth.

“Reading” : Aside from reading green text on a black terminal background of a remote SSH connections, most system administrators don’t do a lot of reading. Yet you should consider withdrawing from the screen and keyboard from time to time just to relax with a nice cup of tea and .. do some reading. But about what ? Vampires ? Wizards ? 50 shades of greyscale ? Most popular ‘books’ that line the bestseller que at the bookstores don’t appeal to us. So lets find something that does.

It has to be about something that interests us, something that is geeky and techie enough to keep your massive brains entertained, but also short and fast enough to outrun our ADD brain .. (oh look : Squirrels ! )

Cory Doctorow’s books have always checked those boxes. For those of you who have not read “Little Brother” and “Homeland” : You are missing out. 2 great books that SHOULD be fiction, but considering what the NSA is doing to day .. feel more like a reality soap. The books are free, you have no excuse but to download and read them. 

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Cory also regularly writes short stories like “When sysadmins ruled the earth” Exiting easy to read short stories about the oompa loompa”s who make the internet work !  You can download the stories individually over at Cory’s website (as a podcast if you are too lazy to read) or download them as a complete book in .ePub or .mobi format.  Its free .. there is no excuse …  Read … you fools ! 🙂

Download the separate chapters here.

Download the entire book as an ePub or mobi here.

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Podcast week : “The cross platform lineup”.

Five days is of course never enough to cover all the good podcasts you want to listen too. There are just too few hours in a day to cramp all that good content into your puny little mind. But we did think that you just HAD to get the rest of our list. Beware for cerebral overload should you subscribe to them all … but here we go : Straight from our podcatcher to yours .. The list.

 

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Windows

  • Windows Weekly : A weekly Twit show that talks about the wonderful world of Windows and Microsoft.
  • This week in Enterprise Tech : For you corporate mouse  jockeys who use Microsoft (and other technologies) in the corporate sector.

Linux

  • Linux for the rest of us. A great show by the mighty DoorToDoorgeek who talks about Linux, open source and squirrels.  SQUIRRELS ! ! ! 
  • Linux action show. What happens if you splice together the DNA of 2 geeks with an espresso machine. This happens ! Morning-Radio style , geeky content.
  • Ubuntu Uk podcast. Served with tea and crumpets (crumpits ? armpits ?) this is a great podcast that talks about Ubuntu and its community.

Mac (and IOS)

  • The Nosillacast. Mac mayhem begins with the pod-princess. Great consistent high quality content with interesting interviews, product reviews and tons of Mac tips. (Warning : This show features an unusual level of Belgians).
  • Mac Power Users. For the advanced Mac users that wants to go all Chuck Norris with his Cupertino machine. Great content, excellent tips.

Android

  • Android App Addicts. Another great show from the Podnutz network. Great app tips every-single-week. Beware of installation-craving-overload and don’t call us if you have five thousand apps on your homescreen. We TOLD you ! 

Security

  • Security Now. Deep geek security with Steve Gibson. Although the show is quite long and they sometimes beat around the bush before getting to the main topic, the content is rock solid.

Music

  • Sometimes you just have to chill or rock out. Podcasts are a great way to get weekly free music delivered to your mobile device. If you like to chill, there is nothing like the soothing sounds of Spacemusic. Podcasting veteran TC has been doing this show for nine seasons and has always delivered the highest quality audio (and the cutest Dutch-English accent in podcasting history)  Download your ambient experience HERE.

General knowledge

  • There is more to life then technology (Is there ?) so why not slide in some podcasts that improve your general knowledge. TED TALKS is the essential podcast to listen to for thought provoking lectures on a variety of topics. You can use the TED APP on your mobile device or subscribe to several of their audio or video streams. Ted talks are just awesome . If you don’t feel like subscribing you can even ‘pick and choose” what talk you would like to listen to in this massive spreadsheet.
  • BBC History magazine. You might have dozed off during history class at school, so why not catch up a little. This cute little podcast always has something interesting to teach you without sounding as boring as your history teacher. (and this podcast does not have a bad breath like he did, nor does it have hair growing out of its ears .. we hope).

But of course there is more. We just scraped the surface of the awesome thing that is called podcasting. There are plenty of other podcasts out there that will give you hours of entertainment and education .. right from your mobile device (or computer .. or media player .. or usb powered adult toy .. no wait .. Strike that) The list above might help you to get started and find out that there is PLENTY of stuff out there to learn and listen to. Enjoy ! 

Do YOU have any good podcast suggestion that just HAS to be on this list ? Tell us in the comments section. (Be sure to provide a link where we can subscribe to your awesome find)

 

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Podcast week : Hacker Public Radio. A geeks Smörgåsbord.

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There is no way to summarise Hacker Public Radio in just one word. It isn’t even “one” podcast but an endless slew of individual podcast episodes by many many different hosts on a great variety of topics. All topics (mostly) center about hacking and technology … but sometimes there is just somebody on there who tells you what its like to stay in a mental institution as she suffers from schizophrenia. Not every show has top notch audio quality and some are a little chaotic .. But the awesome thing about HPR is that it is something DIFFERENT ever day. I feel like the proverbial Forrest Gump who points at his box of chocolates and is unable to correctly prophesize the content, texture and flavour of the next piece of chocolate. “You never know what you are gonna get” is exactly what sums up Hacker Public Radio. The only guarantees (except the speed of light) is that it is going to be related to technology and its going to be interesting.. And if not ? Skip a show and listen the next day.

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Podcast week : Learn Linux with Larry.

Linux is a beast that we all love here at the Knightwise.com headquarters. Though it might suck away precious hours of our life as we valiantly try to recompile a driver, rewrite a complicated Conky configuration file or spend HOURS looking for the perfect wallpaper for our Linux desktop .. the power of the penguin is never far off.  Getting the hang of Linux is not very hard and if you have Larry and Bill to teach you .. its a breeze. The “Going Linux” podcast is refreshingly structured and it looks for ways to use linux to “Get things done”.  With a nicely structured format that deals with Linux on a topic by topic basis, Larry and Bill cut up the shows into “Basic” and “Advanced” episodes allowing you not to loose your mind when its a little too simple for your taste.

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The Going Linux Podcast is informative entertaining and consistent. The backlog episodes are just as valuable as the newest shows and chances are you will surely find something to your liking in their massive massive topic list.  The Going Linux Podcast is available both in Ogg for beard-sporting sandal-wearing nose-hair-sporting Volvo drivers .. and .MP3 for freedom hating muggle’s like you and me.

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