Geekly Update - 23 September 2020

Category: Tech-News

Can a computer read your mind and display your thoughts on a screen? How much would you pay for an 85-inch touchscreen computer? Is Microsoft moving away from subscription pricing for Office software? And what should you do if a 60-foot robot flashes a peace sign and starts walking in your direction? Get answers in today's Geekly Update -- it's jam-packed with the latest tech news. This issue is guaranteed to make you 146% smarter -- you'll see why. Read, think, and, comment!

The AskBobRankin Geekly Update

Residents of the village of Aberhosan in Wales were plagued with mysterious internet outages that happened at the same time every day for 18 months. It turns out the culprit was a really old TV that was being turned on at 7am each morning.

Researchers at the School of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering at the Georgia Institute of Technology have created a low-cost hearing aid that could be built with open-source parts and a 3D-printed case, for about a dollar.

"I'm thinking of something blue...." Are you ready for a computer to analyze your thoughts and guess at what you're thinking? A brain-computer interface at the University of Helsinki models visual perception by monitoring human brain signals, and creates related images.

During the height of the pandemic, Facebook employees being forced to work from home had a chance to ask CEO Mark Zuckerberg about their most pressing concerns. Despite the fact that they all received $1000 bonuses, at the top of their list of questions was "Where's the free food?"

Geekly Update 09-23-2020

Tesla announced at their Battery Day event that they'll be offering a Model S "Plaid Edition" that will have a range of 520 miles, and a top speed of 200 mph. It will be available in late 2021, with a price tag of $139,990. CEO Elon Musk also announced plans for a $25,000 Tesla model, to be available in 2023.

Need a bigger computer screen? Microsoft’s 85-inch Surface Hub 2S runs Windows 10 and will be available in January 2021 for $21,999 (and 99 cents, plus tax, and recappable tires.)

A former YouTube content moderator is suing the Google-owned company because she claims to have developed PTSD (post-traumatic stress disorder) as a result of reviewing hours of graphic video footage every day. She claims the company failed to protect her and co-workers from mental harms.

NBCUniversal’s Peacock streaming service, which offers many popular TV shows and movies for free, is now available on Roku. The parties were squabbling for several months over revenue sharing.

This just in from the Software as a Sore Spot department: Tired of paying a never-ending subscription fee for Microsoft Office software titles? Here's good news: the company will offer a flat-price version of the Office software in mid-2021, apparently moving away from (or maybe just offering an alternative to) the subscription service model.

Garmin's Varia RTL515 and RVR315 rearview bike radar is effectively eyes for the back of your head, designed to alert riders when cars are approaching from behind.

Here's an update on the Gundam robot that towers 60 feet above Japan's Port of Yokohama. The monster robot inspired by movies can now walk, bend its knees, turn its head, and make hand gestures. We're doomed.

Your thoughts on these topics are welcome! Post your comment or question below...

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Most recent comments on "Geekly Update - 23 September 2020"

Posted by:

23 Sep 2020

Hi Bob,

Pretty sure you meant 'offer' in this sentence "company will over a flat-price version of the Office software in mid-2021".

Thanks for the great tech support over the years. I've been with you since Tourbus days.

Posted by:

23 Sep 2020

Typo "Here's good news: the company will over a"
Should be "will offer a"

Posted by:

23 Sep 2020

I stopped using Microsoft Office a few years ago. Couldn't afford it anymore. Switched to LibreOffice and I haven't regretted that move.

Posted by:

23 Sep 2020

MS Office used to be available for a flat purchase fee. I still use mine. I don't use any software that requires a paid subscription.

Posted by:

23 Sep 2020

Too late, Bob. I'm pretty sure we've been doomed since 2016.

Posted by:

Robert T Deloyd
23 Sep 2020

Now this was a very fansinating Geeky Update, Bob...
Better than most of the recent past ones.

Posted by:

24 Sep 2020

I love the way you use humor it just makes my day.
Thank you.

Posted by:

24 Sep 2020

Microsoft Office, at a flat fee again, in mid-2021. Great, my Office 2010 will stop being updated this 31-Dec.

Posted by:

24 Sep 2020

Relief that MS Office will have a flat fee version. My customers use Office so I'm locked into using it. Office's 2010 version is getting a bit stale; will be good to switch to a new and improved version.

Posted by:

Frank Cizek
25 Sep 2020

Buy a MS product? BEWARE! They killed my Office 2000 with one of their upgrades. Same with the $70 MS Precision Pro joystick.
Maybe you can buy MS, but you don't really own anything they make.

Posted by:

27 Sep 2020

My Pro versions of Office2010 and Office2016 (desktop) were both had a one-time purchase price. Both versions are still available for purchase and are regularly updated.
There is also an Office2019 (desktop) “perpetual” version that maybe quite different than the yearly subscription based Office365.

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Article information: AskBobRankin -- Geekly Update - 23 September 2020 (Posted: 23 Sep 2020)
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