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The Tech Night Owl LIVE — Tech Radio with an Attitude!

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August 29, 2015: Meet the Night Owl himself, the incomparable Gene Steinberg, best-selling technology author and columnist. Get to know Gene, and discover his unique, thought-provoking viewpoints about the technology universe, from the always-fascinating happenings at Apple Inc. to consumer electronics, innovative products and overall trends in the tech industry.

Each week, Gene speaks directly to the industry’s movers and shakers, including corporate leaders, industry analysts, and regular panels that feature the most respected journalists who cover personal technology.

On this week’s all-star episode, we feature Michael Roy, Senior Product Marketing Manager for VMWare Fusion and Fusion Pro. He’ll talk about version 8, just released, which offers a number of new features, including support for Windows 10 and OS X El Capitan, along with an enhanced graphics engine for better game play in a Windows virtual machine.

Columnist Kirk McElhearn, Macworld’s “iTunes Guy,” talks briefly about the sudden departure of Apple Music director Ian Rogers, and confusing stats over the number of people still using the service weeks after it was introduced. He’ll also join Gene in speculating about what might come out of Apple’s September 9 media event, where new iPhones are expected. Will there also be the long-awaited refresh for Apple TV, and what about a recent survey, from IDC, which put Apple Watch in second place behind the Fitbit among wearables.

You’ll also hear from outspoken commentator Peter Cohen, Mac Managing Editor for iMore, who will also talk at length about what might be expected at Apple’s media event. What about the fact that Apple will also stream it to Windows users. There will be a brief discussion about the positive reception to Windows 10, the prospects for a new Apple TV, possible improvements to the remote, and whether there’s an iPad Pro in our future.

Episode Downloads

Note: Archives of our shows are posted in MP3 format within four hours after the broadcast. Just click the link to download and listen.

You can now search the episode descriptions for the relevant keywords:

Download NOW PLAYING! August 22, 2015 — Adam Engst and Jeff Gamet

We feature Adam Engst, of TidBITS and Take Control Books. During this segment, he’ll talk about making pizza and Google’s corporate reorganization that resulted in creating a holding company known as Alphabet. Adam explains why the presence of electronic stability control on newer motor vehicles was a prime reason why he purchased a new car for his 16-year-old son, and he and Gene go into an extended discussion about the sad state of auto infotainment systems. Is CarPlay the answer, and is Apple working on building its own car?

You’ll also hear from Jeff Gamet, Managing Editor for The Mac Observer, who also discusses car infotainment systems and the prospects for an Apple Car. The discussion turns to the data breach at Ashley Madison, a site that specializes in matching up people for possible “discrete encounters.” And what about Apple Music, the prospects for a larger iPad, the iPad Pro, along with a new stylus design? There’s also a brief discussion about Apple’s “neglected” products.

Download August 15, 2015 — Jeff Carlson and Kirk McElhearn

We feature Jeff Carlson, Senior Editor for TidBITS, who will attempt to explain what Google’s complex migration to a holding company known as Alphabet is all about. He’ll also talk about Apple’s replacement for iPhoto and Aperture known as Photos for OS X. There’s also an iOS version. The discussion moves on to Apple Watch, where Jeff gives you a brief crash course on using Apple’s fancy new smartwatch.

You’ll also hear from one of our show regulars, columnist Kirk McElhearn, Macworld’s “iTunes Guy,” who will focus the main part of his discussions on Apple Music, and the various problems users have reported since the subscription music service debuted on June 30. Do the iTunes 12.2.2 and iOS 8.4.1 updates fix those problems, or are there more issues that Apple needs to resolve? Gene and Kirk also switch into pop culture mode, talking about the need for daylight savings time, remaking old TV shows as movies, such as “The Man From U.N.C.L.E.” and about British and Australian actors who attempt to sound American. And vice versa.

Download August 8, 2015 — Kirk McElhearn and Jim Tanous

Amid growing reports of problems with Apple Music, we present columnist Kirk McElhearn, Macworld’s “iTunes Guy,” who focuses his discussion on possible solutions to some of those Apple Music problems. He also covers the ongoing problems with iCloud, Apple’s online network, where there are occasional outages and bouts of flaky performance. Major Apple Music problems appear related to iCloud integration.

You’ll also hear from blogger Jim Tanous, Editor-in-Chief of TekRevue. He’ll talk about the Apple Music rollout and the recent report that some 11 million iTunes customers have signed up as of the first week of August. Jim will explain why he’s unimpressed with these numbers, suggesting they should have been much larger when you consider that 800 million people have iTunes accounts. He’ll also cover the ins and outs of Windows 10. He’ll focus on the various changes in the Windows Start menu through the years starting with Windows 95, and on the controversial changes in Windows 8. He’ll also discuss the new Edge browser that debuted in Windows 10.

Download August 1, 2015 — John Martellaro and Mark Spoonauer

We present tech commentator John Martellaro, Senior Editor, Analysis & Reviews for The Mac Observer, who covers a variety of topics as usual. He focuses on the problems of writing reliable code for applications, why we need to “grow” with Apple and not against them, the important new features that make OS X El Capitan more than just a tune-up, the rumored iPad Pro, and what Apple is doing to boost iPad sales. You’ll also hear John’s description of a “not-so-obvious” design feature of the Apple Watch that’s being overlooked.

The second half of this episode will feature Microsoft Windows 10, released this past week. Along to guide you along is Mark Spoonauer, Editor in Chief of Laptop magazine. He will discuss what went wrong with Windows 8, the most important features of Microsoft’s new operating system, and even how some of those features compare to OS X El Capitan. We’ll also cover what Windows 10 features need more work, and the best new PC hardware on which to run it.

Download July 25, 2015 — Josh Centers and Jeff Gamet

On this week’s all-star episode, we present tech author Josh Centers, Managing Editor for TidBITS, and author of “Take Control of Apple TV” and other titles, who focuses his conversation on the disconnect between Apple’s quarterly financials and Wall Street’s reaction, where the stock price lost a few points. He’ll also discuss the surprising decision by Jim Dalrymple, of The Loop, to “fire” Apple Music because of various and sundry problems that included the loss of 4700 songs. The discussion will also focus on the possible antitrust investigation into Apple Music, presumed Apple Watch Sales and how Josh replaced the display on his wife’s iPhone 5c using an installation kit.

You’ll also hear from Jeff Gamet, Managing Editor for The Mac Observer, who will also discuss the questionable reaction by Wall Street to Apple’s record-setting financials. What about Apple Watch and iPad sales? Should Apple relent and reveal actual figures for their smartwatch? Jeff will also discuss the ongoing problems reported with Apple Music and iTunes, and Jim Dalrymple’s decision to give up on Apple’s subscription music service.

Download July 18, 2015 — Peter Cohen and Kirk McElhearn

We feature tech commentator Peter Cohen, Mac Managing Editor for iMore, discusses published reports by a market research firm that Apple Watch sales have tanked. Can they be believed? He also talks about the 2015 iPod refresh, and the future of the product. Also on the agenda are the growing pains of Apple Music, reports of problems with iTunes 12.2, and whether the app should be terminated with extreme prejudice and replaced with something different. And what about the next Apple TV?

We also present columnist Kirk McElhearn, Macworld’s “iTunes Guy,” to talk about all those reported iTunes problems, particularly reports of corrupted libraries after Apple Music is set up. Is there a way to fix the problem, or must we wait for Apple’s solution? Should Apple finally overhaul the app to make it easier to use? Kirk will also discuss the iPod refresh and what it all means, since the iPod is mostly considered to be yesterday’s news.

Download July 11, 2015 — Rob Pegoraro and Bryan Chaffin

We feature tech columnist Rob Pegoraro, of USA Today and Yahoo Tech, who discusses Microsoft’s plans to essentially wipe away much of the Nokia acquisition with layoffs and a writedown of the full $7.2 billion dollar purchase price. Rob will also talk about the confusing DRM setup of Apple Music, patent trolls and transparency, where tech companies outline how often they’ve been contacted by law enforcement authorities to turn over information about some of their users.

You’ll also hear from Bryan Chaffin, co-founder and co-publisher of The Mac Observer. His bill of fare includes a brief discussion of Comic-Con 2015 in San Diego. He’ll also talk about the arrival of Microsoft Office 2016 for Mac ahead of the Windows version, the decision to essentially gut its Nokia purchase, reports that Apple Watch Sales are tanking, and why they should be taken seriously. Bryan will also cover some of the ins and outs of Apple Music.

Download July 4, 2015 — Kirk McElhearn and Jeff Gamet

We feature an extended discussion of Apple Music and how it stands up to the music streaming competition. First up is columnist Kirk McElhearn, who is also known as Macworld’s “iTunes Guy,”who gives you a full picture of his early reactions to Apple’s subscription music service. Does it make the grade, or are there problems still to be fixed? Since Kirk is a serious classical music lover, did he find Apple’s setup a little wanting for people who aren’t among the majority of listeners?

You’ll also hear from Jeff Gamet, Managing Editor for The Mac Observer, who focuses the first part of the discussion on Gene’s new watch. No, not an Apple Watch, but a $12.88 calendar watch that he bought at Walmart. At least it keeps time. You’ll also hear Jeff’s reactions to Apple Music and the reports of problems with the service and the interface. After a brief pop culture back and forth, Jeff will also talk about the next Apple TV.

Check out the Show Archives for earlier episodes.