Your Tech Life – #74 – Webcast (16 February 2011)

Talking Test Drive Unlimited 2, Telstra t-box external drives, HDMI Wireless transmitter, Digital Radio and Pre Paid Mobile – and loads more.. Get in touch – be part of...

Talking Test Drive Unlimited 2, Telstra t-box external drives, HDMI Wireless transmitter, Digital Radio and Pre Paid Mobile – and loads more..

Get in touch – be part of Your Tech Life – call 1800 157 157 and leave a message – a problem with technology, or a question if you need advice on technology, or email me here on the website.

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Your Tech Life – Webcast #74

Date: 16/02/2011

H.MM.SS Name:

0.00.00 Trevor: And a very good evening, a very good afternoon, and a very good whatever it is for you. Yourtechlife.com; thanks for listening, thanks for downloading and thanks for your loyalty. It’s great to have your company once again. Yourtechlife Episode #74, as I update the screen on the live webcast. It’s Wednesday night, a bit late tonight; I seem to apologise for that every week. Unfortunately the dreaded lurgy has struck down my home. My son was sick this time last week, and it slowly made its way through the house. I looked after my wife and kid on Monday, and bam, Tuesday, Wednesday I was out. So apologies for that, and we’re all rocking and rolling now though. Yourtechlife.com if you want to get in touch. Great to have your company, but need your calls; that’s what it’s all about. It’s all about helping you with your technology problems, with your technology questions or advice. You may have technology advice or news for me or the rest of the listeners of course. Yourtechlife.com is the way to share that with me. And it’s all thanks to Harris Technology – ht.com.au, Gizmo – gizmo.com.au, Norton – Norton 360 from Symantec. I’m four hours away from being able to tell you some great news about them. But, unfortunately you’ll have to wait till next week’s podcast, or to trawl the internets. And Netgear – Great connectivity solutions for your office and your home. Thank you to those great sponsors couldn’t do it without them. But more importantly, couldn’t do it without you the loyal listener; for downloading, for listening, for rating on iTunes, for reviewing on iTunes, or whatever it is. Yourtechlife.com. Thank you very much for listening and downloading.

0.02.01 T: Now I’ve got a few things to get through tonight, a few callers, so let’s kick it off straight away and say G’day to Gary. Gary?

0.02.09 Gary: Hello Trevor, how are you doing?

0.02.10 T: Look really good, there’s a delay on the line which tells me you’re a long way away. Where do I find you this proud day?

0.02.16 G: I am at the airport lounge in Almaty, Kazakhstan.

0.02.23 T: Oh, as you would be. In Kazakhstan; you must be there with our mate Falsto?

0.02.28 G: That’s right; Falsto and I have been working together on this project for the last 6 months or so. And I’m just leaving for the last time, so I’m saying farewell to Kazakhstan today.

0.02.37 T: Oh well Farewell Kazakhstan.

0.02.38 G: And I’ll be coming to Australia in a couple of weeks.

0.02.41 T: That’s good, so what can I do for you then?

0.02.45 G: Well, I’ll be in Australia in a couple of week’s time. And I’ll probably be there for a month, or two or three months. And I’m just looking at what I should be getting in terms of prepaid sim cards, you know? Should I be going with Telstra, Optus or any of the other providers?

0.02.57 T: Very good question Gary; now do you know what sort of calls, or what sort of amount of calls you’re going to be making? And are they only going to be local? Because you’re a bit of a Skype man like Falsto, so you wouldn’t be using it for international calls surely?

0.03.09 G: Not a great deal, No you’re right. We tend to rely on Skype these days, but we have the occasional international call. But otherwise it’s just calling locally; I’ll be based in Sydney. We might have the occasional weekend in Canberra to catch up with Falsto. Or maybe down to Melbourne, but not really outside the major cities. And so I don’t know whether I’m better off with the network that Telstra has, or whether I could go with Optus who are better in the cities. I’ve been away for three and half years now, so I don’t know whose best in the marketplace. So what do you think? What’s your advice?

0.03.39 T: Mate it’s a very good question, in the end Telstra has the best network – that’s undoubted. But, you know it does only show when you’re looking to do amazing data, which doesn’t sound like you are; and when you are going into absolutely regional and rural areas. Now if you’re sticking to the capitals, the holiday areas and those kinds of areas, you could easily be with Optus. Vodafone haven’t had the best reputation, and they’re still struggling a little. But I would weigh it up between Optus and Telstra. Now, if you are looking for prepaid, I’ve gotta tell you, and I’ve been banging on about it a bit lately, but only because it’s front of mind. There’s a company called Amaysim.

0.04.25 G: I did hear you mention a few weeks back on your podcast.

0.04.26 T: Now the thing about it is, I’m actually doing some numbers now for my phone, and my wife’s phone. Because we’re on cap plans; sometimes we go over, sometimes we go under. The thing is that its simple mate, it’s really easy to judge; it’s 15c a minute for a call, there’s no flag fall, you can get a bit of data on it as well. And it’s all managed online, so once you set up your account, and when you get here, you can just buy one at a service station and you could get it running in an hour basically. And you can monitor it online, so you can login everyday or every week, and just look at how much you’ve used. And you can either do prepaid or post paid, and I’ve got to be honest, it’s probably one of the best ones on the market in terms of basic prepaid. If you were looking at a lot of money – making a lot of calls, then you should probably look at one of the bigger guys; Optus or Telstra’s general prepaid deals, but in the end, for cost of calls Amaysim is probably the way to go.

0.05.20 G: Well that sounds like the deal for me. You reckon you can get them at service stations?

0.05.24 T: Yes.

0.05.26 G: If I look at their website, does it tell me where I can get one?

0.05.28 T: Absolutely, they’ve done some really good retail deals. And I think that’s something they pride themselves on. I’m just going to go to their website while we’re talking – amaysim.com.au; store locator: 7 Eleven, Woolworths, Caltex, Dick Smith. Yeah mate, you’ll be fine, they’re pretty much everywhere.

0.05.50 G: There’s bound to be one.

0.05.51 T: There’ll probably be a Caltex on the way back from the airport. So you’ll be fine.

0.05.54 G: Well I’ve got to get one as soon as I get there.

0.05.56 T: Exactly, get one when you get there, log onto the website. I actually did it only a couple of days ago. I grabbed a sim card and I hooked it up, it took me ten minutes online. I got to choose my number and all that kind of stuff. So bottom line, once you logon every now and then, you can actually see how much you’ve spent. So in terms of the whole suite; cost, ease of use and monitoring the usage, I reckon it’s a great way to go buddy.

0.06.20 G: Trevor, that’s fantastic. Thanks once again for a great piece of advice.

0.06.24 T: All right mate, safe travels buddy.

0.06.27 G: Thanks very much, I’ll be back in Australia in the next couple of weeks.

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0.06.34 T: I do get a little bit staggered by the international reach of the podcast. But, great to hear from Gary and his mate Falsto over there in Kazakhstan. Looking forward to having them back in Australia no doubt, and I’m sure they’ll be looking forward to the weather here too.

The podcast is thanks to great people like Gizmo – gizmo.com.au, if you want to get in touch with them over the internet, it’s the best way to do it. These are people that know technology. They’re the people who have read the manuals. They will come to your home, or they will help you over the phone with your technology problems. An example, I had a caller to the new 2UE radio show we did on the weekend, Saturday, and we had a lady having problems with her Tivo. And what we did was, look I tried to help her out, but in the end it’s a really hard thing that’s not going to work over the phone while on the radio in real time. So, I’ve got Gizmo heading out to see her, and they’re going to help her with that. Even your audio visual needs, they can help you with that. But certainly your computer, setting up your network, just basic trouble shooting, Gizmo can help – gizmo.com.au. Great people, great service, fixed prices, no fix no fee guarantees – so if they can’t fix it, they won’t charge you for it, really great stuff.

I’m actually going to the IIA’s gala dinner tomorrow night with the good people at Gizmo. With their new CEO, Andrew and a few others, so I’m looking forward to catching up with the crew at Gizmo and working together for a long time to come. They’re good people, Gizmo – gizmo.com.au, if you have any home or office computer problems, Gizmo – gizmo.com.au.

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0.08.18 T: Now I don’t admit to being a huge gamer, not for one second. But, something you may remember me talking about a few weeks ago now, probably a month ago now was the day I had with Damien Francis from T3 magazine up at the racing cars, well not racing cars, but really fast cars, and we were driving them around a track. It was as part of a preview for Test Drive Unlimited 2, available now on XBOX and Playstation. And I thought I’d get our good gaming man Andrew on the line.

0.08.52 T: G’day Andrew.

0.08.53 Andrew: Hey Trev, how you goin?

0.08.54 T: Mate, I’m excellent, now tell me this, did you play the beta for Test Drive Unlimited 2?

0.09.00 A: I did, I gave it a fair whacking race, yes.

0.09.04 T: Do you know what the limitations of the beta are; because it was out for a little while; so what could you and couldn’t you do that you know of?

0.09.10 A: Well basically the servers were only on for ‘Playtest’ time, so you had a limited window, usually the weekends. They had a few weekday test plays, but…

0.09.25 T: So you basically couldn’t play the game unless they opened it up to you?

0.09.28 A: Yes, that’s correct.

0.09.29 T: Right, and tell me what your initial thoughts of the game was.

0.09.32 A: I loved it, big fan of the original Test Drive Unlimited 1. I was playing that back in 2006.

0.09.42 T: Yep

0.09.42 A: And they’ve taken all the great elements of the first one and just made it even better.

0.09.47 T: So let me tell you my impressions of it. I’ve now got the full game and, now Andrew, don’t stress, I play it on the Playstation, but you’re an XBOX man if I remember correctly?

0.09.57 A: Well yeah I’ve got an XBOX

0.09.59 T: Well I’ve got a Playstation because I’ve got the Logitech steering wheel, and you can’t get that on the XBOX. So, I’ve got the XBOX version, and don’t worry, I’ll send it to you. So you can give us a full review of it, shortly, because they sent me both a Playstation version as well as an XBOX version. So I’ll send you the XBOX one to muck around with, in the next few days.

0.10.14 A: Thank You, I’ll take care of it.

0.10.15 T: I’ve got to tell you, that it’s something really different. Because, I’ve been playing as you know Forza Three, Grand Tourismo and all these kind of car guys and they’re very much about the racing experience. Now, here’s what I love about this game. It’s not always about the racing; it’s a little bit about the adventure. And now this is going to sound crazy now, and I apologise, but its Grand Theft Auto meets Grand Tourismo. And I mean that in the sense that in GTA, which is a nasty, nasty piece of work game, in terms of what’s behind it and the sorts of things you can do. But you can just get in the car and drive around, and that’s the concept here too. You’re on the island of Ibiza, and you can level up and go to Hawaii. But essentially you can cruise around this island, just cruising around all you like. And then you can play a race, do some of the challenges, earn money and buy a new car, yeah?

0.11.10 A: Oh yeah definitely, it’s a very sandbox game for sure.

0.11.12 T: Because it’s a huge map, I mean the island of Ibiza that is on the screen, and I assume its very life like, is massive. Therefore the technology behind having the entire island on a mapped island that you can drive through is unbelievable.

0.11.28 A: Yeah, they take pride in saying that it is fully GPS mapped.

0.11.32 T: Right, because the other thing I like about it, and I know it’s crazy but I just like being able to drive off the road. You know, in real life you can drive off the road into a bush if you wanted to, and in a lot of the games like Grand Tourismo, there’s just no limits outside the track. It’s just the track and there’s nothing else. Whereas with this thing, it lets you drive across a farm if you wanted to. And it plots it on a map so that you know that way next time. But, here’s the only thing I don’t like about it. Test Drive, which is, I’m talking 15 years ago about the original game; there was a sense about it of being chased by police. Now, in this game, when I do that I get caught within 20 seconds because there’s like 25 police cars that come upon you. Is there no sport in that anymore, in this game?

0.12.15 A: I’ve noticed that too a bit, I though it has become a little bit police heavy. If you do something wrong, bang, they’re onto you.

0.12.23 T: Like 20 cars come at you, it’s impossible to evade them.

0.12.26 A: Yeah, I would say that that would be one of the negatives I’ve found on it, with all the positives.

0.12.32 T: Look, I’ve been playing it probably three days; in total like three nights kind of thing. And, I did the first challenge and I won that, so I immediately bought a beautiful Audi S5 Coupe which was glorious. And then I realised that I have to sell that to get an off road vehicle to play the next challenge. So, there’s a bit of learning in it, as to what you’ve got to step through, but you’ll find that I guess. Milo made a very good point, there’s a helicopter in the police chase as well – a helicopter comes over the top, and you can basically just get arrested by the helicopter. It’s just a little excessive. I guess having played Test Drive Unlimited 1, what you’re saying to me is this one’s better, obviously, but what do you think is the best thing about it that you’ve seen thus far?

0.13.15 A: I’d say the day night cycle, the weather cycle they’ve now got in it which they didn’t have in any of the previous editions.

0.13.25 T: I didn’t notice weather, but I did notice day/night. Because I left the thing, and sometimes I’m just sitting here and I turn off the screen because I’m bored. And then I come back the next day, and it’s like a different time of day. It’s a very short cycle, probably 2 hours at a guess, 2-3 hours for a whole day/night cycle; which is cool because you can drive around, but you can also do the challenges and the races at night time.

0.13.47 A: Another quick thing worth mentioning is also the DLC that is out for it as well.

0.13.50 T: What does that mean? What’s a DLC?

0.13.51 A: Downloadable Content

0.13.55 T: Right, what is that?

0.13.56 A: Well the big one they’ve got for Test Drive Unlimited 2 is ‘Casino Online’, which is a little island casino, where you can actually go and, it’s pretty much just a little casino that has; blackjack, poker machines. You basically change your chips for money etc. It’s sort of like in a real life casino, and you can actually play for the Audi R8 in the casino as well.

0.14.25 T: Oh, I’m going there. I just watched a National Geographic or Discovery Channel show about building the R8, I so want one of those. Now, the only other thing that annoyed me and maybe it was just me. But on the Playstation, I still haven’t worked out this Playstation Network thing. But, when I first turned the game on it needed an update, and I went ‘nah’, I just want to play the game. And so it’s got me in as User 1 all the way through it, even though I’m logged in now. It’s kind of weird, I’ve got to work that out, but anyway I don’t know how it works. But, I also tried the multiplayer thing. I grabbed the little Logitech skype headphones I have, and I plugged them into the Playstation and they worked. So I’m hearing and having conversations with people over the internet, driving cars. That’s kind of surreal.

0.15.09 A: I’ve met a lot of people online doing that. Just people overseas who you would never think of talking to, and you have the most mundane or fantastic conversations with people you’ve never met. It’s quite good; I find that social part of it quite good.

0.15.23 T: I only found it a bit weird, because I couldn’t work out where these guys where. I could hear them talking, but I couldn’t find them. And when they’re talking it doesn’t show you on the screen who’s talking, which is a bit weird. Because then you don’t know who to find on the map. And the other thing is, you’ve got to find a community, you’ve got to find a group of people who you kind of know and trust. So you can have a race, and you don’t have idiot’s kind of getting involved and bashing into you and stuff. That would be my only concern about that.

0.15.49 A: Yes, no there are some races out there that just bash you off the course, and fly ahead. I personally don’t like that.

0.15.56 T: All right, well Test Drive Unlimited 2, I’m initially a massive fan just because it’s more than just a race game it’s a bit of real. There’s a real game play to it, it’s not too intense and it’s quite enjoyable. Ah men, do look for the carwash… that was surprise. I don’t know if you saw the carwash in the beta but, let’s just say it’s not an automatic carwash, their very attractive, that’s all I’ll say.

0.16.23 A: One last thing worth mentioning is that it’s also available on PC.

0.16.26 T: Really?

0.16.27 A: Yes

0.16.28 T: Ok, awesome; I’m still not sure why you’d game on a PC. It just bogs your system down. Get yourself a proper gaming system and it’s going to work every time without fail that way. That’s just my opinion.

0.16.41 A: Yes, no you are quite right there.

0.16.42 T: All right, our gaming man Andrew there; thank you very much buddy. I’ll talk to you soon and I will send you down Test Drive Unlimited 2 on XBOX.

0.16.50 A: Always a pleasure Trev.

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0.16.56 T: Milo in the chat room is a big fan of Test Drive Unlimited 2 as well. So check it out if you’re into gaming in anyway shape or form. Another great sponsor of the program is Norton 360 from Symantec. All I’ll tell you today is that it’s great software, I really like their software, and I really like what they’re doing in terms of just generally trying to protect the internet. I know it’s a stupidly weird thing to say, but you know you can get Norton Safeweb on your Facebook. I’ve seen, and I hope I’m not breaking trust here, but I’ve seen Android applications that they’re developing which look very exciting to me, in terms of protecting you Android operating system and looking for malicious software and things like that. But the most exciting thing that Norton 360 and Symantec have… I can’t tell you about until 2:30 in the morning and it’s nearly 11 o’clock now. Now, I know there are only 9 people watching live right now, but that would be wrong of me to break the embargo. So, next week I’ll talk to someone from Norton 360 from Symantec about it, but let me just tell you this, wherever you’re listening, whenever you’re listening, check out the internet, go to all the big websites, there’ll be plenty of news on it. Let me just say that a) it’s a new product, and b) there’s a new website for you to visit on a regular basis that will keep you in touch with what’s happening on the internet in terms of cyber crime. It’s a really great initiative and I’m quite supportive of it from Symantec. So, good luck to them with that and stay tuned to the interwebs for all the news on that one from Symantec.

0.18.41 T: Let’s go back to calls, G’day Kevin.

0.18.42 Kevin: G’day Trevor, back I think it was early December I gave you a buzz in regards to reception on digital radio.

0.18.52 T: And you had a shop, I photographic shop as I recall.

0.18.57 K: Yeah, that’s it, we’ve got a metal roof so when we got this nice digital radio we thought we’d solved our reception problem; because for 30 years we’d had reception problems on AM and FM.

0.19.12 T: You were getting only some stations? You were getting some of the nationals, but not all the commercials.

0.19.19 K: Yeah, that’s correct, we were getting some stations and then it would cut back to ‘No Service’. Anyway, thought I’d just give you a buzz and let you know that I’ve sort of solved it. You said to me at the time that the aerial should be vertically orientated, so I made sure I did that, although that was roughly were it was before I rang. So what I thought was, it’s vertically orientated, what if we had a longer aerial? So the aerial on this particular radio is only a strand of loose wire hanging, so I just pulled back the insulation a bit, and bared it off a bit, and then put another bit of multi-strand on it. And then I had the original aerial pinned up, and this now hangs down. It’s about a metre and a half long, and my god, what a difference!

0.20.22 T: So you’re saying the original aerial just goes up, and then your extension comes back down?

0.20.23 K: Yeah, originally I’ve got it up high on a shelf which you suggested as well. So it’s about 6 inches from the ceiling from the top of it. So I’ve got it held up with a drawing pin so to speak, one of those plastic ones. And then I’ve got the aerial dropping down, it drops down about a metre and a half – about half way down the wall. So we were getting – this particular radio has a signal strength indicator– and we were getting 19’s and 20’s out of a 100 before, and then sometimes even dropping back to 0 and then no service. And now it’s in the 40’s, maybe sometimes a bit higher, sometimes it drops back. I don’t know why it varies.

0.21.10 T: Mate, it could be anything in the air. It could be interference in the air, and certainly in the environment you’re in, it could fair dinkum be anything. Well that’s a pretty good result in the end; so you’re enjoying all of the stations now?

0.21.21 K: Yeah, what I did then was I rescanned it. I got the thing to rescan and it picked up so many more station, it’s fabulous.

0.21.28 T: There’s about, I think if you rescan it now, about 42 stations including some test broadcasts from some of the community broadcasters.

0.21.35 K: Yeah, that’d probably be about right.

0.21.37 T: And have you discovered anything new that you’re enjoying?

0.21.38 K: Oh no, we really still listen to a lot of the old stations. But we do like the new 2WS Australian only hits I think it is.

0.21.49 T: Yeah, the class hits plus.

0.21.51 K: Yeah, classic hits plus; that’s fabulous. So we listen to that, we listen to classic hits, we listen to 2GB. 2GB comes in so clear, you can tell the difference in the microphones that the presenters use.

0.22.03 T: Wow, you have got good ears.

0.22.06 K: You can hear Brian Wilshire at night has more bass. And you can tell that without even touching the set at all that he has a bassier sound to him. One night you could hear him brush against the microphone, he’s that clear.

0.22.23 T: It is, I said on the weekend on the Radio that it’s kind of like being in the studio, it really is unbelievable.

0.22.27 K: Yeah I believe that, I hear the ads on the radio and it is true. It’s great, if the girls want to listen to some music during the day; it’s so crystal clear; it’s fabulous.

0.22.39 T: That’s great stuff, well I’m glad you got a result cause it would of been annoying in the end to only get a couple of stations.

0.22.45 K: The only other thing we could do was pull the roof off.

0.22.47 T: Well let’s not go there, you’ve got it fixed. Alright mate, well I hope the punters who are coming into the shop are enjoying it as well.

0.22.54 K: I’m sure they are. Thanks again Trevor.

0.22.55 T: Well I hope business is going well for you, absolutely no problem at all. Thanks again for getting back in touch.

0.23.00 K: Ok then, See you, bye.

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0.23.05 T: Love it when a plan comes together. Telstra has announced 4G; it’s very exciting – 4G wireless. Now, it’s LTE technology, what does it mean? Well it means that it’s faster than HSDPA, what does that mean? It’s faster than most networks around the world. Look, it’s all a lot of jargon, but what you mainly need to know is that in capital cities by the end of the year, should you choose to buy a specific new little dongle from Telstra, you will be able to get, well good speed. Very good internet speed, now the thing that I would suggest to you is this, the current Telstra Bigpond Unlimited dongle, can allegedly do up to 40 mbps downloads. In reality, you rarely get 10, if you’re lucky; 5 and 6 is nice, 10’s at an absolute premium. They say LTE technology; this new version of mobile broadband will do 100-300. So we may get; 20, 30, 40, 50, we may get 60. It’s kind of embarrassing to say that we may get that speed, but its unbelievable speed. When you compare it to Unwired, which was kind of the first wireless broadband, it’s staggering, they’re basically dial up. So absolutely staggering speeds, but it’s all about capacity. It’s all about the number of people that want to do it. And therefore they need to increase their capacity, and that’s what this technology does, it increases their capacity and therefore their potential speeds. It is not a replacement for the National Broadband Network, the NBN will deliver fibre to the home and a massive amount of possible speed at all times. With wireless, you have this massive amount of possible speed, but the more people that use it, the more congested it gets, it’s a highway, a super-highway. It’s a fantastic initiative, and I look forward to lots of people using it through Telstra. But please, don’t think that it’s a replacement for the NBN. Don’t let this be an argument as to whether or not the NBN is worthwhile. The NBN is an argument in itself; should we have it, should we not; whole other discussion. Telstra’s LTE announcement is purely a market leading announcement. Optus are doing trials as well, and they’ll announce there’s too very soon. But again, Telstra is about that Network, and they’re really kicking goals with this. So you’ll expect the iPhone 5 perhaps to have LTE technology, because in the US there are 4G networks. But they are nowhere near as good as what we’re going to have here. What they claim to be 4G in the States is slower than, in most cases, our 3G. We have the best mobile network in terms of data, let alone anything else in the world alright. Forget America, this is awesome what we have here from Telstra. Let alone Optus and Vodafone. So, a great announcement from Telstra from David Thodey at the Mobile World Congress overseas, and I look forward to hearing more from them. And frankly, I look forward to testing out that little puppy. Cannot wait to see the speeds we are going to get out of 4G.

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0.26.14 T: Another big thank you, to another great sponsor; Netgear – netgear.com.au. If you want to check out any connectivity solutions you may need; if you need a new modem, if you need a new router, or you need to connect your TV to the internet, you need to connect your fridge to the internet. It doesn’t matter, that’s what Netgear do, they do connectivity between devices and the internet. So, whatever it is in your home that needs to be on the internet, Netgear can help you get it there, that’s what they do. So check out all of their great products at netgear.com.au. Jeff in the chat room says he’s just been trying out the NeoTV. I’ve got one of those in the lounge room; I love it, it does High Definition content across the network beautifully. I’ve got to do some firmware updates on it; I noticed if I added my podcast it would come through at a very strange speed of voice. I’m hoping a firmware update will fix that. Also had a few little troubles with watching Youtube videos, but I’ve got a firmware update available for it now so I’ll give that a whirl. But essentially, it’s a great device for connecting your home network and the files on your network; files, photos, videos, whatever they are to your television. Whether your TV is brand new or really old, the NeoTV from Netgear will help you connect your TV to the network. And that’s what it’s all about; the connected home, the connected life – Netgear.com.au.

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0.27.40 T: Let’s go back to calls; G’day Alan.

0.27.42 Alan: Hello Trevor.

0.27.44 T: Hello mate, how are you doing?

0.27.45 A: Not too bad, yourself?

0.27.46 T: What can I do for you buddy?

0.27.47 A: I had this problem with a Telstra T-box, but I seem to have fixed it now.

0.27.53 T: Well, a problem that you had may be a problem that many others have. So what was the problem originally?

0.27.58 A: I had a Telstra T-box, and in the instructions it says that you can connect an external hard drive up to it, to copy the programs off.

0.28.10 T: Because it’s got a USB in the front doesn’t it?

0.28.11 A: Yeah it does, and it has another one at the back.

0.28.14 T: I’ve never done that.

0.28.16 A: I’m not sure what the one at the back does.

0.28.18 T: It probably does the same thing mate, just so that it’s more discreet. And so what was the problem?

0.28.21 A: I went and bought an external hard drive, a 1tb one, plugged it in, and there didn’t seem to be any options to copy the programs from the T-box, over to the external hard drive. So I had a read online about it, and it just said that the hard drive needs to be ‘Fat 32’.

0.28.44 T: ‘Fat 32’ is a file format basically.

0.28.48 A: Yeah, and on Windows 7 when you go to the properties and it gives you the options to format it. It only gives you NTFS, and another one, ‘exFAT’ – I’m not quite sure what that one is.

0.29.01 T: So ‘Fat 32’ back in the day was kind of Windows 95/98. NTFS came in around service pack 2 Windows 98. But then certainly for Windows 7, and all the big servers and things; that’s what it stands for, with NT being the Windows server system, they all have NTFS (NT File System). And then EXT, I know is more used with Linux , and things like that. So my question is, when you plugged it in, did it actually see a drive, or was it that it just couldn’t write to it?

0.29.27 A: When you went to the options, it said there was an unnamed USB drive there. And then in the instruction booklet, I couldn’t actually work out how you copy a program over. And then when I went to the menu, it said ‘My Recordings’ and it didn’t actually show you the option to copy it to the external hard drive.

0.29.49 T: So how did you solve it?

0.29.50 A: I found some free software, some partitioning software, and I reformatted the drive with that software in Fat32.

0.29.58 T: So that was the only problem that it had to be Fat32, and on Windows 7 it wasn’t giving you that option. So you found some freeware to do it?

0.30.05 A: That’s right, yeah.

0.30.07 T: Now let me ask you this, why do you want that option?

0.30.10 A: Well, because we record shows and the hard drive isn’t that big on the T-box really. I’ve only had it for about 5 -6 weeks and I’m already up to about 60% full. So I thought I’d better get an external hard drive.

0.30.26 T: So it basically keeps stuff. So when you record a movie off the TV, you can put it on the hard drive and off you go from there. And then you plug it back into the T-box and you can watch if off the hard drive.

0.30.35 A: That’s it yeah; you can use the hard drive and plug it into the T-box, because you can’t plug it into anything else. But if you plug it into the T-box it gives you the option to watch it.

0.30.46 T: Right, you see I never thought about it. Although it is a problem with the T-box that it doesn’t automatically manage your files. So, it doesn’t say ‘you’re getting full’, nor ‘do you want me to automatically delete these and those?’ which is something that happens on a Foxtel IQ and Tivo.

0.31.00 A: Well I haven’t really got that full yet, I’ve only got up to about 60%. So I’m not sure what happens when you get up a bit more, if it does give me the option or not to delete things.

0.31.07 T: Trust me; it doesn’t give you the option. It’s a real pain in the bum, it just fills up and that’s not a good thing. But here’s the beautiful thing about a device like that when it’s connected to the internet. All they’ve got to do is fix that as a firmware thing, and that’ll be an update they make available to us, hopefully, as T-box users and that’ll fix it for us. So fingers cross they release that, but I’m glad you got it sorted out, and its good advice to anyone else with a T-box that Fat32 is the way to go. Now, there’s about 120,000 T-box’s in the country they say that have a T-box, are you loving it?

0.31.39 A: I do, I actually bought other hard disk recorders and the EPG on them is just not as good. I looked at the Tivo as well, but that was just too expensive, it was about $400.

0.31.56 T: Yeah, crazy money isn’t it?

0.31.59 A: Yeah, and I actually watched on Youtube your review of the T-box and I saw all of the menus, and the EPG is very important to me, and it looked really easy on the T-box.

0.32.09 T: You know, I just thought that it was such a good thing to show, because for me, video recorders are all a much a muchness. But this thing is so amazingly easy to navigate; it’s got a beautiful interface, so I just thought that was the absolute No.1 selling point for it.

0.32.25 A: It is, it is definitely without question. Oh and at the moment they’re giving away $300 worth of movie vouchers as well, if you sign up for a T-box. So basically I got it for nothing.

0.32.35 T: Oh that’s nice, and do you use the movies a fair bit? Do you download the movies a lot?

0.32.43 A: I do now that we have $300 worth. I’m not sure how much I’ll use it afterwards. I might just go back to using the local video shop, because they’re still a lot cheaper.

0.32.52 T: Do you find that? What do you pay for a Movie in the video store these days?

0.32.55 A: Well probably around $6-$7 for a new release, but then you can get 10 weeklies for like $10, or something like that.

0.33.02 T: So it’s the weeklies where you’re paying through the nose for these online movie rentals. But the new releases are…

0.33.11 A: That’s right the new releases are about the same, while the older movies are still a lot cheaper in the video shop.

0.33.14 T: You’re paying about $4 on the T-box I think for an older movie.

0.33.17 A: You are its $3.99.

0.33.19 T: It’s that impulse buy mate, that’s where they want you in impulse buy. All right thank you very much mate for the call, and thanks very much for the information buddy.

0.33.27 A: Ok, thanks very much Trev.

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0.33.34 T: Thank you once again to Harris Technology, the good folk at Harris Technology – ht.com.au. If you want to find a great tech deal or you can also follow them on twitter – @htcomau. You know the great thing about following them on twitter is they’re shooting out little deals every now and then. But we’ve got to keep on their back; we got them a few followers the other day. So, jump in there and follow @htcomau for Harris Technology, and you’ll see lots of great little deals. I’m just having a quick look at their website for some hot deals. Now this is not such a cheap thing, it’s $1998, but if you’re looking for the ultimate workstation. And I mean power workstation, this is a; Core i5, 12 gig of ram, 60GB solid state hard drive, plus 1.5 TB normal hard drive, Windows 7 Pro and two 22-inch Dell monitors plus a dual monitor stand all thrown into the package. So it’s a powerful computer, its two monitors and a dual monitor stand for 2 grand, what a great deal. They’ve got a Seagate goflex desktop – $218, for an external hard drive. Just having a look at my favourite Netgear router; the WNDR3700 is a beautiful router which costs $217, so it’s a very good deal. Plenty of Clickfree backup solutions, Microsoft keyboards, Targus cases, Logitech webcams, basically whatever you want with technology – ht.com.au.

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0.35.33 T: Now, before I go to our last caller of the night, I want to tell you about a really cool thing I’ve been mucking around with. Freelancer.com, I’ve talked about it before, I’ve talked about it on the old radio show in fact and we’ve talked about it here. I gave it a whirl this week; a couple of days ago I posted a job on Freelancer. So I’m looking for someone to perform a task, now I didn’t think it was a very common task. And now, I’ll tell you exclusively what it is, I want someone to transcribe this podcast. I’m willing to pay someone to type down every word that I say, now you might say, ‘how egotistical of you Trevor’. No, how generous of me; there are people who are hearing impaired and use the internet in such wonderful, amazing ways for research that could benefit potentially from the information that we have here in this podcast. So, I want to set the stage for people to create accessibility amongst podcasts. And I’m going to have transcriptions of podcasts, hopefully starting this week. I don’t know how many days it’ll take for it to become available, but starting this week, transcriptions of this podcast. So you’ll be able to go to the website and read the podcast. I know it sounds a little strange, but as a service to the hearing impaired I think it’s a valuable, valuable thing. So, I went to Freelancer.com, I logged in, I registered, I posted the job. Let me find it for you, let me find it and read it to you. It was basically, I have this thing called ‘transcription of audio’. That was my job, and I had to write a little bio about it, you know, what I was after. And I put a very simple thing there, you know, I’m doing a podcast, it’s a talkback podcast, there’ll be different voices in there. I said this simply; I’m looking to transcribe around an hour of audio each week, the audio is a podcast and I’d like to make a text version available for the hearing impaired. That’s all I said, and I said I was willing to pay between $30 and $250. I’m not really willing to pay $250, but that was the range listed on Freelancer.com. Now the most exciting thing for me was the first bid was from an Aussie, and that person has bid $50. I had 9 bids in one hour, and I posted this at 8:30 at night a couple of nights ago. No, it might have actually been 10 or 11 at night. Anyway, it was very late at night; no it was 8:30 at night on Monday night. I’ve had now 38 bids, which is just phenomenal, phenomenal. And here’s the great thing, on Freelancer.com you can sort by anything. You can sort by the reviews those people have had, kind of like the eBay ratings system. You can sort by country, so that I can see I’ve had; 4 from the UK, 2 from the US, 3 from Australia. But I’ve had it from; Bangladesh, Bulgaria, Canada, Cyprus, India, Kenya, Malaysia, Mauritius, Nigeria, 3 from Pakistan, 4 from the Philippines, Portugal, Romania, Singapore, South Africa, Switzerland, the UAE and Uruguay. Unbelievable and you know the prices range from $30 up to $50. And it’s all about taking average price, although there was someone on there that wanted to charge me $300 – I don’t think so. I’m clearly not checking the rest of the bids. Now I’m keen to go with an Aussie, so I’ll be picking one of the three Aussies, I think that’s the right thing to do in terms of loyalty and workload. So, I’m going to pick one of the Aussies and hopefully in the next week we’ll have transcriptions of this great podcast available soon. And hopefully other people will understand how great that is for you, and for other people. But great service, Freelancer.com; I did not expect, for transcription of audio. I mean they were talking computer programmers and all those kind of things there, wow, unbelievable stuff. I look forward to having that available in the next week or so.

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0.39.33 T: And for Andrew in the chat room, no, it’s my discretion. I get to choose who wins the bid, because I can look at their background, I can look at their ratings, I can look at things like that, so it’s not always lowest bidder. I can go on what I choose to do.

And, for those of you listening late and tuning in all the way through the podcast, a little bit of other news, and for those in the chat room as well. I’ve only got one more call to go, but before we have our last caller, in the next two weeks we’re going to have something that I hinted to last week. But, I’ll give you a little more info this week; new podcast, probably in two weeks maybe next week. It’s going to be called ‘Two Blokes talking tech’, it’ll be myself and Stephen Fenech and we will talk tech every week. 30 minutes every week, we will be talking the latest news and info on technology as a podcast on iTunes and everywhere else as you would expect. Two Blokes talking tech, that’ll be the podcast with myself and Stephen Fenech. I look forward to that every week, it’ll be where you find all the tech news and info and reviews. And this will be where you find my thoughts and opinions and talkback, that’s what it’s all about. So, Yourtechlife.com will continue strong and safe, don’t you worry about that Milo; this is talkback, opinion and information, while Two Blokes talking Tech is similar, but it’s just two blokes talking tech. It doesn’t come much better than that. So more news on that in the next week or so, so stay tuned and I look forward to having your company on that one as well.

0.41.00 T: Let’s go to another caller, the last caller of the show, G’day Bob.

0.41.04 Bob: G’day Trevor.

0.41.05 T: What can I do for you mate?

0.41.07 B: I got in touch with you and told you about a HDMI adaptor.

0.41.14 T: That’s right, because you sent me a note about this. And I’ve got a lot of calls recently about the wirelessly connecting your computer screen to your TV.

0.41.20 B: That’s right.

0.41.21 T: Now you found some sort of dongle, or some sort of kit that will do it for you will it?

0.41.24 B: It does in most cases.

0.41.27 T: So tell me about it.

0.41.29 B: It’s made by a company called ‘Iogear’, and it’s called a wireless HDMI computer to TV kit. And it’s a little RF device I guess, it’s got a dongle that you plug into your computer, and then there’s another unit that sits by your TV and hooks up with a HDMI cable. And once you download the drivers and get it all set up, it allows you to take your computer screen directly to the TV.

0.42.02 T: So, just go back a step; in the computer, does it plug into the USB or some sort of other existing output?

0.42.10 B: No, it’s USB.

0.42.12 T: Ok, so it’s USB, so the screen is somehow coming out of the USB and wireless via some RF probably. And then there’s some other box that you sit by the TV, and then it’s HDMI to the TV from there.

0.42.22 B: That’s correct.

0.42.23 T: And, have your tried it on a couple of computers or… how have you gone?

0.42.26 B: I have, I’ve tried it on a Macbook that was on 10.6.5 and it worked fine. I then brought it home and plugged it into my Macbook Air, which I’d just taken onto 10.6.6 and unfortunately it doesn’t work.

0.42.45 T: All right, well that’s a bugger.

0.42.47 B: And I’ve been in touch with Iogear and they say it’s a known problem with the 10.6.6 OS and that it’s going to be fixed. But now I have to wait.

0.43.00 T: So they say…

0.43.01 B: So they say, yes.

0.43.04 T: Well that’s awesome, so Iogear have a wireless computer to TV kit. So how much did it cost you?

0.43.10 B: I bought it in the states and it was about $140 all up.

0.43.15 T: Now did you actually travel to the states, or do you find a way to shop online.

0.43.20 B: No, my children live there so we go there.

0.43.23 T: You lucky duck.

0.43.24 B: Yep.

0.43.25 T: Do you have any tips for people who want to buy online from the states?

0.43.30 B: I usually don’t buy online while I’m in Australia and bring it over here; I usually buy it while I’m in the states.

0.43.38 T: Now, Best Buy’s a massive company over there, what do they do in terms of browsing and shopping online and picking up in store? Because that’s something I’ve talked about a lot in the past too.

0.43.47 B: Yep, you were talking about the fact that you like to be able to go pick things up a couple of weeks ago.

0.43.54 T: Yep.

0.43.55 B: Best Buy has a thing were when you go to their website, and lookup items, and they tell you how much it is, and whether it’s available and you can order it. But, they also ask you for your equivalent of a postcode, it’s called a zip code, and when you put that in they list all the stores in that area and then they tell you whether that store has it in stock.

0.44.17 T: Right.

0.44.18 B: And then if they have it in stock, you can order it immediately and then go pick it up.

0.44.25 T: That’s perfect isn’t it, and so do you agree that that’s a pretty cool way of shopping. So then you have that immediacy of being able to find it online, and also physically grab it yourself. I love that idea.

0.44.35 B: Oh definitely, just like you I hate waiting for things to arrive. I’d much rather go and pick them up if I can.

0.44.41 T: Good on you, you’re a good man Bob. Thanks for letting us know about that product and your experiences. Keep in touch mate, thanks for the call.

0.44.48 B: All right, bye.

0.44.49 T: And, you’re listening to Yourtechlife – yourtechlife.com.

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0.44.56 T: Do get in touch, Yourtechlife.com, send me an email, and let me know what you think of the show, let me know what you’re having problems with in technology. And most importantly subscribe, listen every week, its available most Thursdays as a podcast on iTunes and at yourtechlife.com – that’s the way to get in touch. And don’t forget I’m on 2UE every Saturday at 2 o’clock with Tim Webster, look forward to hearing from you and talking to you if you want to call up on 13 13 32. That’s Saturday at 2pm on 2UE. We’ll be back next week once again and don’t forget, check out Norton from Symantec on Thursday or later. There’s some great new initiatives coming from Norton, and a whole stack of news there. I’ll be back next week taking your calls and talking technology. Send me an email, yourtechlife.com.

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Trev produces two of the most popular technology podcasts in Australia, Your Tech Life and Two Blokes Talking Tech. He hosts a nightly radio show on Talking Lifestyle, 8pm Monday to Friday in Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane, appears on over 50 radio stations across Australia weekly, and is the Tech Expert on Channel 9’s Today Show and A Current Affair. Father of three, he is often found down in his Man Cave. Like this post? Buy Trev a drink!
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