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John Zander
Android nerd, Ingress player, guitarist.
Android nerd, Ingress player, guitarist.

John's posts

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Gotta hand it to the FBI. Take their proposal of a completely custom system build that would circumvent various protections that are designed to keep people away from your information, and consider it on purely technical matters. It's simple to explain to technical people, and it's simple to explain to people that are not that well-versed in technology.

But consider this. There is no such thing as a safe-guarded backdoor. Do you really believe that once one government agency gets their hands on such a system build, it will only be used to help the "good guys"? If you are, I'd love to live in the fantasy world you're inhabiting.

In the real world that the rest of us live in, this will be nothing short of a disaster. This custom build will get shared between various government agencies and branches, with an absolute guarantee of two things happening. First, it will get to an agency that is solely overseen by secret courts that rubberstamp pretty much every request. Second, it will get into the hands of general public, sooner rather than later - through social-engineered hacking or another Snowden-like act of political activism.

And then there's another absolute guarantee. Let's for a minute say that if you're a law-abiding US citizen, then the US government is good guys. Then there are other governments who are our allies, which makes them good guys by proxy, and there are other governments which are our enemies which makes them bad guys.

What is going to stop other governments from demanding access to the same special system build? How many countries can a multi-national corporation withdraw their business from before it has no more places to do business in? How do you as a supporter of lawful information decide on which laws you agree with and which step over "the line" that separates the good guys from the bad guys?

There's not a single line in Tim Cook's letter that is a gratuitous exaggeration of the dangers that lie ahead. I've spent the first twenty years of my life living in the communist USSR, where it was pretty safe to assume that the state had the capabilities and the means to do mass surveillance of anybody and everybody.

How does the self-aggrandizing beacon of democracy turn into the omnipresent surveillance state? Two ways. Gradually, then suddenly (in the mighty words of Ernest Hemingway). Just don't tell your kids that you didn't see it coming. 

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I'm really happy with how this came out. I spent an embarrassing amount of time getting the animation right on the logo at the end, I mean, other than the half hour of standing in the snow to get the original pictures, but it was completely worth it. If you like this video please subscribe at
Sure, this is what we are putting up for potential new subscribers to the channel, but John did an absolute fantastic job with this.  Check it out, and if you haven't subscribed to the YouTube channel yet please do!!

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Cult Classic Movies

Wherein +Steven Bateman​​, Brandon Ray and I discuss our favorite cult classic movies. This is my favorite episode so far, and not just because I get to talk about Con Air.

We've got a ton of really exciting projects coming out in the next few months, if you want to see it all as soon as it comes out subscribe at

If you want even more right now, Andrew and I were guests on Steven's podcast Why Haven't I Seen This

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I'm really very excited by what we've got planned for this year. We've got an experienced team, good content, and fantastic production gear (Sony A7Rii FTW). Check out what we've already made at and subscribe to see what's coming next at
Hello Dear Followers,

(TL;DR - New amazing stuff coming, Please share everything!, and we love you)

I come to you today with a ramble. There is a great number of you who follow us, and our content and enjoy what we do. Some of those people out there even relish the idea of helping us do what we do. With that in mind, I want to tell you exactly what can help the most.

Over just the last year, despite a lull in content, we have grown as a group into a much stronger entity for you. Geeks of all kinds, no matter what, is what drives us to continue what we do, and expand our offerings. 2016 has so many exciting new things coming your way, I just can't wait to tell you about them, and to share them with you.

A little tidbit of info on some of what we have coming is this; we have a new show in production that I just know you will love, and we are going to start producing short films. With our new show we have teamed up with the team over at Why Haven't I Seen This? podcast, and the results are going to be just fantastic. As far as the short films? They are going to range from funny to thought provoking, educational to dramatic. It's just going to be a great time.

Getting us spread around the internet, and into the eyes and ears of as many as possible is the best bet in helping us grow as a community. The bigger we grow, the more we reach, the more effect we can have on the Geek community. So what can you do? Well, that's easy. If you see one of our posts during your scrolling through Facebook, Google+ or Twitter, just hit that share button! If you watched a show and have a thought, or maybe just enjoyed it, hit that Like button and comment! It's those interactions that help get us to more people.

We absolutely love you folks. We wouldn't be anywhere without our growing following. Stay tuned, as 2016 is going to be great!

-Andrew Risenhoover

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Capsule Review, the Force Awakens: The First Order continues the Empire's tradition of excellent engineering vision combined with slapdash execution. Among the problems which might have been addressed if the Imperial Navy had a robust postmortem culture:

(1) Once again, an Imperial superweapon project is crippled by poor attention to HVAC design and insufficient redundancy. Maybe install some grates?

(2) It doesn't matter how good your biometric scanners are if they can be bypassed by shooting them. Also, Han, are you sure it's a good idea to have an airlock to your cargo bay that opens when you shoot it?

(3) Bottomless pits are the most common cause of death among Sith Lords. Maybe you need one. But if you want to add flair to your lair, have you considered a water feature? Or maybe install a railing on the catwalk.

(4) Someone in the Imperial research corps said, "We thought Stormtroopers were too accurate, so we took away the eyeholes." Then they gave them flamethrowers. This man was an idiot.

(5) If you need to keep a star inside a planet, have you considered building two of the thing which keeps the star in there? It seems like it would be bad if it got out.

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The Force Awakens spoiler free review.

This is the highest production value video I've ever made, and I'm really happy with how it turned out. We'll be posting a longer review that's just filled with spoilers later in the week.

#starwars   #theforceawakens  
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