Unofficial Accidental Tech Podcast transcripts (generated by computer, so expect errors).

373: This Jerk, Right Here

Casey’s ridiculously Casey storage waffling, John’s ridiculously John evaluation of the PS5 controller, and Marco’s ridiculously Marco retro-gaming setup. With special guest Tiff Arment!

Episode Description:

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Transcribed using Whisper large_v2 (transcription) + WAV2VEC2_ASR_LARGE_LV60K_960H (alignment) + Pyannote (speaker diaritization).


  1. Retro tech
  2. Casey’s storage status
  3. Dark Sky follow-up
  4. Sponsor: Hover
  5. Casey’s Time Machine
  6. Sponsor: Eero (code ATP)
  7. PS5 controller 🖼️
  8. Sponsor: Linode (code atp2020)
  9. Raspberry Pi & Pi-hole
  10. RetroPie
  11. Retro gaming 🖼️
  12. Ending theme
  13. Post-show

Retro tech

⏹️ ▶️ Marco What did you use before Google and, you know, modern like dot-dot-go?

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Like, what were your first web search engines?

⏹️ ▶️ Casey AltaVista. And wasn’t there a web crawler? Something that was actually called web crawler, I thought, wasn’t

⏹️ ▶️ Marco it? That was one. I mean, there were a bunch back, like, in the late 90s. There were a ton that were really getting off the ground.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco You know, Google really didn’t take over and become the thing until, like, 2000 and later. You know,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco most of the 90s, it was a very dynamic landscape.

⏹️ ▶️ John We just talked about this on Rectifs.

⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco on rectifs. Oh yeah? Oh

⏹️ ▶️ John, Tiff Arment man. I mean,

⏹️ ▶️ John not much. I don’t know how we got on the topic, but yeah, we were talking about that. The search engines before Google.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Yeah, I think AltaVista was the best one for a

⏹️ ▶️ Marco, John while.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco I remember using that a lot. I used, I briefly used Ask Jeeves.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey There it is. I was waiting for it. I was waiting for it.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco There was like, you know, Lycos and I used Yahoo for a while.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey Oh, that’s true. Yahoo, there was a window of time early on that Yahoo was actually very good and now it’s

⏹️ ▶️ Marco not. BotBot was a big one back then. There were a whole bunch.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey That does not sound like a search engine anymore

⏹️ ▶️ Casey, Marco in today’s internet.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Yeah, right.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco, Casey But

⏹️ ▶️ Marco yeah, it was a while before Google really took it over. I never

⏹️ ▶️ Marco, Casey used

⏹️ ▶️ Marco MSN, which later became Bing. Never really got into the Microsoft services side of things.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey You know what I did use by way of my grandparents? My grandparents had and

⏹️ ▶️ Casey loved, and it actually was really good for them, and I say that with no sarcasm, they used

⏹️ ▶️ Casey and loved the Web TV, which eventually became the MSN Web TV. Did you ever see

⏹️ ▶️ Casey these? You ever use these?

⏹️ ▶️ John I remember doing web development and the worst browser to support was Web TV.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey Yeah, it was extremely cool, extremely bad technology.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey And it really was a great introduction to my grandparents who at the time were in their probably 60s

⏹️ ▶️ Casey and had never really had a computer. It was a great introduction for them to the internet

⏹️ ▶️ Casey and to email and things of that nature. So I don’t begrudge WebTV,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey because I, pardon, partly because I never had to develop for it. I mean, it was a piece of garbage and it was terrible and it was slower

⏹️ ▶️ Casey than dirt, but it was very, very cool and worked reasonably well

⏹️ ▶️ Casey for being a complete piece of garbage.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Well, it was a reasonable idea because, you know, not only, you know, you mentioned like, you know, it was for like your older grandparents,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco like that was the target market, really. It was for like generally older people who

⏹️ ▶️ Marco were intimidated by the idea of getting a computer or couldn’t afford a computer, and

⏹️ ▶️ Marco they wanted, but they already have a TV, because everyone had a TV, so it would be like a gateway and

⏹️ ▶️ Marco maybe like dipping your toe in the water. It’s funny to think back, at different times of

⏹️ ▶️ Marco technology, different parts of the computing devices were very expensive,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco and that would drive everything. And during that time, screens were still very expensive.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco it was actually prudent to have a system where, you know what, we’re gonna be able to let you

⏹️ ▶️ Marco use the screen you already have, which is your TV, and we’ll just sell you some kind of small box. And,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco I mean, other parts of it were expensive, like memory, that was still expensive back then. But still,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco the screen was a big deal. Like now, they put screens in everything now, because it’s cheaper than putting

⏹️ ▶️ Marco physical controls. Now you can get a color touch screen for cheaper

⏹️ ▶️ Marco than it is to make a control panel with some buttons on it.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey Yeah, it’s so true. I remember vividly, I feel like I just told this story on the show, but I remember vividly

⏹️ ▶️ Casey getting a 20 inch, I think it was like a 20 inch CRT that weighed about a billion pounds.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey And it was like, I think it might have been Trinitron. Maybe I’m wrong, I don’t know, it doesn’t matter, but it was beautiful.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Yeah, most of them were, most of the 20 inches were Trinitrons.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey Yeah, it was amazing. And then I remember a friend of mine, a couple of doors down from me in the dorms at college,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey this was very early 2000s, like literally the fall of 2000. I remember

⏹️ ▶️ Casey he had an LCD screen for his computer. I was like, oh, that jerk, he must be frigging loaded.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey He has a flat panel display for his computer. Those things are a fortune.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey How does a college kid have one of those? I was so jealous for the

⏹️ ▶️ Casey, Marco longest time.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco The first ones, I saw them like the same year, so like around like 2001 is when you start getting

⏹️ ▶️ Marco like desktop LCD monitors. And they were, I remember they were only 15 inches and those were

⏹️ ▶️ Marco about $1,000. Oh yeah. for the

⏹️ ▶️ Casey monitor,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco just for a crappy 15 inch, like 1024 by 768 LCD. I

⏹️ ▶️ Casey wish I had, I had eventually, like a couple of years later, I got one from dad and remember that

⏹️ ▶️ Casey dad worked for IBM for almost my entire life. And oftentimes, you know, there

⏹️ ▶️ Casey was equipment and I don’t mean that he stole it. I’m not trying to say that at all, but like equipment that they didn’t need anymore, he would end up finding

⏹️ ▶️ Casey in not again, this is sounding like he’s stealing. I’m not saying he’s stealing it, but some way or another it ended up at home. And then it ended

⏹️ ▶️ Casey up at college for me. This sounds way worse the more I talk. So I’m just gonna move, just plow right along. But I had this

⏹️ ▶️ Casey like ancient IBM LCD screen and it had, again, there’s

⏹️ ▶️ Casey surely a technical term for these connectors, but it had these connectors. It was like composite, but it was on the

⏹️ ▶️ Casey back of the screen and you would like, it was a quasi-coaxial thing,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey, Marco but it was one of those things where

⏹️ ▶️ Casey you would, maybe that’s what it was, and you would stick it in and then twist.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Those are BNC connectors, that’s probably RGB inputs, which I actually have a lot to say about later for a totally different reason.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco But

⏹️ ▶️ Marco, Casey yeah,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco those were probably, because I think professional video monitors back then would use RGB,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco HV, and yeah.

⏹️ ▶️ John Our Color X terms at school had those connectors. Which were distinct from the regular X terms, which of course

⏹️ ▶️ John were not color.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Yeah, yeah, I have a lot more to say about analog color inputs for monitors coming up later.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey You know, not to totally jinx us, but I’m actually very excited for this entire episode. I think this is gonna

⏹️ ▶️ Casey be a good one. you

Casey’s storage status

⏹️ ▶️ Casey I have more to say about Casey’s Computer Corner, but we have some related follow-up first.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey If you recall last episode, as we were recording, the Synology had rebuilt its entire

⏹️ ▶️ Casey 6-drive raid array, or so I had thought. It had marched all the way to 100%.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey I had taken a screenshot when it was at like 99% thinking, oh, of course, this is when it’s gonna die. And no, it didn’t

⏹️ ▶️ Casey die at 99. It started over. And it started over

⏹️ ▶️ Casey from zero. And several different people wrote in to talk about this and why this

⏹️ ▶️ Casey is. And they also said that Synology’s on-screen GUI display

⏹️ ▶️ Casey of what’s happening is not the best. And what you really need to do is you need to enable

⏹️ ▶️ Casey SSH on the Synology, which I did not have enabled for security purposes. And what you really need to do

⏹️ ▶️ Casey is to look at the file in PROC, and the file is called mdstat. So it’s, you know,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey you would cat slash proc slash MD stat. And that will tell you with more detail exactly what is happening.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey So I did that and I realized, okay, it is legitimately doing something. I

⏹️ ▶️ Casey have no idea what it is, but it’s doing something. It told me that it was going to take literally a week to finish,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey which

⏹️ ▶️ Casey, John was

⏹️ ▶️ Casey very disheartening. And then I found from somebody else’s tip, there’s a place

⏹️ ▶️ Casey in around the same spot in the Synology where you can tell it, I don’t care if this uses a lot of like CPU power,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey just crank this thing out as quickly as you possibly can. And so it ended up finishing,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey I don’t know, at some other point, we’ll talk about that later. It doesn’t matter. But the point is, there’s a blog

⏹️ ▶️ Casey post about how to check the progress and why is this happening? Well, and now

⏹️ ▶️ Casey I’m getting way out of my depth and maybe John, you can be my parachute and save me here. But apparently

⏹️ ▶️ Casey SHR, which is Synology Hybrid RAID, is basically taking several different,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey like RAID 5 or RAID 6 or something like that, volumes and lumping them together using LVM,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey not LLVM mind you, but just LVM, which is Logical Volume Manager, and making

⏹️ ▶️ Casey one big logical volume out of all of these smaller RAID

⏹️ ▶️ Casey arrays. That is about as best as I can understand. So John, maybe you can help me out here.

⏹️ ▶️ John Yeah, I saw the same feedback you did and check up on it. But what it sounded like, I mean, the last show Marco

⏹️ ▶️ John briefly described as like what Drobo does, but it actually seems like it’s much less sophisticated than that, which makes sense

⏹️ ▶️ John if you look at it from the outside, what can Synology Hybrid RAID do versus what does a Drobo type

⏹️ ▶️ John approach do? Synology Hybrid RAID is basically the same as a RAID 5 type approach. The only

⏹️ ▶️ John difference is you can swap in disks that are not the same size, and if you eventually swap

⏹️ ▶️ John in enough of them, you gain some storage, whereas RAID 5 really wants you to use disks that are the same size

⏹️ ▶️ John or build a new array in the traditional way. And according to this feedback, what it’s doing

⏹️ ▶️ John behind the scenes is simply, when you put it in a new drive, making a new RAID array

⏹️ ▶️ John with like the newer changed drives and then making these multiple RAIDs that it’s managing

⏹️ ▶️ John behind the scenes look like one volume using logical volume management. That’s what LVM is, that’s what it

⏹️ ▶️ John does. Makes perfect sense to me, it’s fine. But you know, understandably,

⏹️ ▶️ John if they are sort of accurately reflecting the rebuilding of each one of these RAIDs that they’re maintaining

⏹️ ▶️ John behind the scenes, it can look like what Casey just saw where the progress bar starts and finishes

⏹️ ▶️ John and then starts over again because it’s actually doing multiple raid rebuilds behind the scenes.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey Exactly. But yeah, it seems like everything’s okay and we’ll talk about that a little later.

Dark Sky follow-up

⏹️ ▶️ Casey Would one of you like to tell me about dark sky and location-specific data, please?

⏹️ ▶️ John Brian Brush had this notion that what Apple might bring to the table in the case of

⏹️ ▶️ John a weather app like dark sky is that everybody who has an iPhone is essentially a distributed

⏹️ ▶️ John barometric measuring device because our phones do have barometers in them apparently.

⏹️ ▶️ John And assuming those are accurate enough to be useful, it’s not just that Apple now has a good weather

⏹️ ▶️ John app and can incorporate the prediction services and all that into its applications

⏹️ ▶️ John but potentially depending on how Apple wants to do this they can use iPhones as measuring devices. I have no idea if that is

⏹️ ▶️ John founded in any kind of reality. I just thought the idea was interesting that

⏹️ ▶️ John actually dark sky would gain some benefit from being part of Apple instead of just vice versa.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco I don’t know much about weather or the barometer in iPhones but

⏹️ ▶️ Marco I would guess the main value value in that is not necessarily measuring absolute air

⏹️ ▶️ Marco pressure, but in measuring change. Because that’s probably like a strong predictor

⏹️ ▶️ Marco of rain about to happen, right? Isn’t it like, oh, there’s a big pressure drop. And so if you have a bunch of iPhones out in the

⏹️ ▶️ Marco field that you can kind of tell like, hey, the pressure just dropped noticeably in this area for almost everyone,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco then that would be significant data. So I bet they could do something with that if they wanted to. I don’t know

⏹️ ▶️ Marco if they will, but that’s a really cool idea. and it’s a way that you can basically

⏹️ ▶️ Marco make the entire fleet of iPhones into a giant short-term weather prediction thing.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Now, that’s not gonna give them radar and forecasts and anything like that, but that

⏹️ ▶️ Marco probably is helpful. And I would guess that the barometers inside of iPhones probably

⏹️ ▶️ Marco are sensitive enough, because the whole point of them is to do things like measure when you’ve gone upstairs

⏹️ ▶️ Marco for activity tracking, like to measure flights of stairs. So I would imagine the air pressure difference

⏹️ ▶️ Marco between like one floor of a house and two or three floors up is not that great of an air pressure difference. So

⏹️ ▶️ Marco again, I don’t know anything about any of this stuff, but just going on a hunch here, I bet they are sensitive enough to at

⏹️ ▶️ Marco least know, hey, the air pressure is changing and it’s dropping for everyone

⏹️ ▶️ Marco in this area right now.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey It is definitely a very interesting idea which I had not thought of. And speaking of weather data, Luke

⏹️ ▶️ Casey Schulman amongst others have pointed out that the weather data industry has

⏹️ ▶️ Casey consolidated leaving only two major players in the United States in 19, in 2012,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey IBM purchased the assets of the Weather Channel, which included software and data products, and the Cable Channel was later spun off.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey They in turn later acquired Weather Underground, which was run, which is basically a community of personal

⏹️ ▶️ Casey weather stations. The other major player is AccuWeather, which has its own data and media products. None

⏹️ ▶️ Casey of these organizations operate weather stations. They simply process and repackage data from the National Weather Service,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey which is available for free and in the public domain. So I guess if you really wanted to go to the National Weather Service,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey maybe you could make heads or tails of it. One way or another, AccuWeather and IBM have for years been lobbying to Congress

⏹️ ▶️ Casey to change the law so that the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, the NOAA,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey model data is no longer released to the public. Of course they are. But basically, you can

⏹️ ▶️ Casey get this data if you really want to try hard enough, or you can use something, well, could have used

⏹️ ▶️ Casey something like Dark Skies API, which I guess kind of puts a nice facade in front of all of that.

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⏹️ ▶️ Marco It’s very quick and easy to find what’s available. whenever I do any kind of business start or any kind of

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Casey’s Time Machine

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⏹️ ▶️ Casey Let’s go through Casey’s Computer Corner. I made some brief kind of updates earlier. Like

⏹️ ▶️ Casey I said earlier, the rebuild did complete. I think it finished on,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey it was overnight from Saturday to Sunday. And so

⏹️ ▶️ Casey that is to say the restore began when that was begun Wednesday evening. It was finished, you know, what,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey three or four days later. So the way it stands right now, drives one and two, still time machine, still

⏹️ ▶️ Casey old drives, if I recall correctly. And then I have 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8 are all

⏹️ ▶️ Casey the big, you know, master volume, if you will. Drive 5 is that new 10 terabyte

⏹️ ▶️ Casey drive. Drive 8, still hanging on, still there, still working

⏹️ ▶️ Casey for now. Well, after everything was updated, the first thing I did was immediately

⏹️ ▶️ Casey re-R-sync everything to that 12TB external, make sure it’s all as good as can be.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey The second thing I did was hook that 12TB external back up to the Mac Mini

⏹️ ▶️ Casey and immediately sign it up for Backblaze with my own money. And it is currently uploading

⏹️ ▶️ Casey that 12TB drive to Backblaze. And it is, I think, two or three terabytes in.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey And so what I wanted your guys’ advice on is what to do next. And I tried to do this

⏹️ ▶️ Casey in Slack, and Marco probably rightly said, save it for the show, I’m not telling you. But here’s my thought process.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey So currently I have about 10 terabytes of data

⏹️ ▶️ Casey on that big volume. Now it’s a 20 or 30 terabyte volume, I think 20 terabyte, but I have 10

⏹️ ▶️ Casey terabytes of actual data on it. Drives one and two together, they’re currently

⏹️ ▶️ Casey RAID zero, so they’re no redundancy, nothing, and all it is is time machine, so whatever,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey who cares. But drives one and two currently have, I think, only six terabytes. I can verify, but I’m pretty sure it’s only six

⏹️ ▶️ Casey terabytes in there. But I do have a couple of brand new 10 terabyte drives sitting here waiting

⏹️ ▶️ Casey for me to do something with them, like if drive eight dies. So here’s my thought.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey What if I destroy that first volume, drives one and two? I destroy that volume.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey I lose my time machine backups. Whatever. I don’t care. I replace one of those three terabyte

⏹️ ▶️ Casey drives with one of these new 10 terabyte drives and make another RAID 0 no redundancy array,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey a 13 terabyte or thereabouts RAID 0 zero redundancy array. I duplicate

⏹️ ▶️ Casey everything from the big array into the little array. I think

⏹️ ▶️ Casey I probably should do that irrespective of the next step. And then this way I would have two complete

⏹️ ▶️ Casey copies of my data on, and admittedly on the same box. Like there’s plenty of problems here. This is not foolproof

⏹️ ▶️ Casey by any means, but it’s more than one copy, which is a good thing, right? Two is one, one is none.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey And so my thought is, what if I do that, and maybe I just issue Time Machine

⏹️ ▶️ Casey forever? Because I can’t remember the last time I’ve done a Time Machine restore. And given all the frigging computer problems

⏹️ ▶️ Casey I’ve been having recently, my computers are effectively ephemeral anyway. You know, I’ve gotten so darn efficient

⏹️ ▶️ Casey at reloading them that I can do that reasonably quickly and easily. So

⏹️ ▶️ Casey I would—that’s step one is, do you think—are you guys on board with that idea? And then there’s a

⏹️ ▶️ Casey second step that I’d like to talk about first. Or am I being silly by throwing away the time machine volume and

⏹️ ▶️ Casey having a duplication of all of that data? Let’s start with Marco, please.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Is your Backblaze backup finished yet? I already know the

⏹️ ▶️ Marco, Casey answer.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco, John No, no, no, no,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco no. No, it’s not finished. So the answer is don’t do a damn thing. Fair,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco fair, fair. Don’t touch it. Back away slowly. Just don’t

⏹️ ▶️ Marco, Tiff Arment touch

⏹️ ▶️ Marco it. Let the Backblaze backup finish and don’t do anything else until

⏹️ ▶️ Marco it does.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey Well, and to be clear, the Backblaze backup is being sourced by that 12 terabyte external. I do not disagree

⏹️ ▶️ Casey with you. I do not disagree with you. I think you’re right. But let’s assume for the sake of discussion, it is not done. But let’s assume

⏹️ ▶️ Casey for the sake of discussion, it is done. And I promise, I super pinky promise, I will not touch anything until that Backblaze stuff

⏹️ ▶️ Casey is squared away. What would you do then?

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Right now, you are recovering from a near disaster. Yeah. You are

⏹️ ▶️ Marco lucky. Oh, yes. that you got out of this. You know,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco so you recover from your… So step one is like, get your insurance policy in place. You know,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco get these backups done. Step two might be, start fixing things that

⏹️ ▶️ Marco aren’t broken again, like John said last week. But, here’s the thing. We’re still

⏹️ ▶️ Marco in COVID-19 quarantine everything. It’s slow and difficult to get new

⏹️ ▶️ Marco parts delivered to your house quickly right now. So if things go wrong,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco or if you change your mind, or if your needs change, you lucked out with your Best Buy parking lot

⏹️ ▶️ Marco hard drive, but it might not be easy to get more stuff. So if you do

⏹️ ▶️ Marco something, and then three drives die in the process,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco, Casey I don’t know, it could’ve happened, right?

⏹️ ▶️ Marco How hard is it gonna be right now to get new hard drives? It might be hard, it might be tricky,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco it might take longer than you think. This is not a good time to be making changes.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco So I suggest that because it’s hard to get supplies right

⏹️ ▶️ Marco now, this is not a great time to mess with it.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Let the backup finish, let this just continue the way it is going,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco and then consider other options once you can get like hard drives delivered same day or

⏹️ ▶️ Marco tomorrow from Amazon.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey All right, so let’s assume then that now we are in 2025 when all this is blown over,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey then what would you do? Would you nuke the time machine? Would you eschew time machine entirely to have a

⏹️ ▶️ Casey second copy of all this data?

⏹️ ▶️ Marco I actually like time machine. Now, it is incredibly

⏹️ ▶️ Marco slow, and incredibly old, and comically terrible in the

⏹️ ▶️ Marco UI. Like, you know, things like missing progress bars.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco By the way, talking about missing progress bars, in the new Catalina Finder integration

⏹️ ▶️ Marco for plugged in iOS devices to access their files. So you know how iTunes forever

⏹️ ▶️ Marco had that section where you could actually drag files in and out of certain apps using iTunes?

⏹️ ▶️ Marco You can do that now in the Finder in Catalina, but it’s so incredibly

⏹️ ▶️ Marco half-assed. So we were trying to transfer our Minecraft game from Adam’s iPad

⏹️ ▶️ Marco to Tiff’s gaming PC. And this is the method that this was able

⏹️ ▶️ Marco to be done. You can plug in the iPad and Minecraft exposes the data directory

⏹️ ▶️ Marco through that old iTunes file transfer interface and you can drag the files out and put them on a different device.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco That’s what I did. The directory I was dragging out was something like, I don’t know,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco a couple of gigs. It’s showing folders, but you can’t actually like open those

⏹️ ▶️ Marco folders. You have to just like drag the entire folder out. So you can’t take like just a subfolder,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco you can’t actually browse beyond the top level. That’s limitation number one.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Limitation number two is when you drag that folder that you have to copy the whole folder of out from the fake

⏹️ ▶️ Marco iTunes interface in Catalina Finder onto your own computer, onto some other folder,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco you drag it, you drop it, and there is no feedback whatsoever.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Nothing. You have no clue what’s going on. Now, if you’re transferring a two gig folder,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco that actually takes a minute or two. Like, it’s not an immediate thing. There is no feedback.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco there’s no progress bar, there’s no spinner, there’s nothing indicating that anything is happening,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco except if you try to do it again, something weird happens. I forgot what it was. But.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco So eventually, it pops in, like it shows up. It’s just like, I just love how, like they

⏹️ ▶️ Marco didn’t even code a progress bar. Nothing, like it’s so gloriously half-assed.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco But anyway, it’s just yet one more way in which the breakup of iTunes actually made everything worse. Anyway,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco so going back to your thing. Yeah, what I would suggest, I actually like Time Machine because

⏹️ ▶️ Marco I hardly ever need to fetch anything off of it. I think I use it maybe once a year.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco And usually it’s like, you know what, I had something working in a code

⏹️ ▶️ Marco file that I was working on. I’ve been there.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco, Casey I

⏹️ ▶️ Marco had it working last night, I didn’t commit it, and I messed it up today,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco and I can’t get it back to the way it was. Let me just revert to how it was at 10 p.m. last night.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco and I pull that one file out and that saves my butt about once a year and I’m glad

⏹️ ▶️ Marco I have it. And it’s slow as hell, but I’m really glad I have it during that

⏹️ ▶️ Marco time.

⏹️ ▶️ John That’s a feature that Xcode should add that I sorely miss and it made me actually consider switching

⏹️ ▶️ John my editing from editing in Xcode to editing in BBEdit. BBEdit has this amazing feature that

⏹️ ▶️ John I wish Xcode had, which is that you can configure it so that every time you save a file,

⏹️ ▶️ John it saves a backup copy of the previous version of that file in a folder of your choice.

⏹️ ▶️ John Text files are small. It is a no-brainer. I have had this feature enabled for many, many

⏹️ ▶️ John years, maybe decades at this point. I have a giant folder on my computer with the old version of

⏹️ ▶️ John tons and tons of text files all organized by date. It has saved my butt so many times.

⏹️ ▶️ John Because yeah, sometimes you forget to commit. you don’t commit bringing up the commit interface even using

⏹️ ▶️ John a keyboard accelerator next code takes time and it’s just even you have to think of a commit message because it makes you write one it’s

⏹️ ▶️ John just I don’t want to have to think about it and also I don’t want to have to restore code files from time machine never

⏹️ ▶️ John had to do that when I was using the BB edit already with using X code for the short amount of time occasionally I said

⏹️ ▶️ John I’ve done it in the same situation I forgot to commit I’ll just get it from the backup folder oh no it doesn’t exist

⏹️ ▶️ John so if you’re listening Apple and you work on X code but add this feature, it’s so easy to add. You just

⏹️ ▶️ John put it, you know, make a bunch of folders by date and you put the file in there and you stick a timestamp on the

⏹️ ▶️ John file name and maybe there’s a little bit tricky logic about truncating for someone who has a 255 character file name,

⏹️ ▶️ John but honestly they should be punished anyway. So please, please add this feature.

⏹️ ▶️ John People will use it, it’s great.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Well, just make Time Machine better.

⏹️ ▶️ John No, that too, that’s a different team.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Yeah, right, I know. But like, is there really much of a team there? Like has Time Machine

⏹️ ▶️ Marco been touched? Yeah, yeah,

⏹️ ▶️ John but it’s updated to use the APFS snapshots. Like every time we’ve talked about this,

⏹️ ▶️ John like even though progress is extremely slow and should be faster, it is still

⏹️ ▶️ John changing, which gives me hope that it hasn’t been entirely abandoned and that someday, somehow we might get a version

⏹️ ▶️ John of Time Machine that takes full advantage of the modern technology stack in macOS. We’re not there yet, but

⏹️ ▶️ John every version gets a little tiny bit better.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Yeah, oh, speaking of which, by the way, we didn’t prepare to do this news at all, But there’s a new version of Arc, the

⏹️ ▶️ Marco backup app, ARQ. It looks really cool. It uses APFS snapshotting to make the backups really

⏹️ ▶️ Marco fast. And so I actually, I’m gonna upgrade to that. I’m gonna check that out, because it looks really cool. And Casey, it actually

⏹️ ▶️ Marco might be an option for you at some point in the future, maybe, because

⏹️ ▶️ Marco it supports fully now, or it better supports Amazon’s super

⏹️ ▶️ Marco cheap Glacier version and Google Archive, which is basically Google’s Glacier,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco and I believe they each charge about a dollar per terabyte per month. So if

⏹️ ▶️ Marco you can make that work for you, that could back up your stuff actually legally for like 12 bucks a month.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey Yeah, I had heard a little bit about that and I haven’t had a chance to look into it, but that does sound very,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey very

⏹️ ▶️ Casey, John appealing.

⏹️ ▶️ John You should look at what the restore prices are though, because unlike Backblaze, they will not ship you a drive for free.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Yeah, and I will say the process of using Glacier with Arc a couple

⏹️ ▶️ Marco years ago when I tried it was miserable. but apparently it is better now. But

⏹️ ▶️ Marco I don’t know how much better.

⏹️ ▶️ John I just peeked in my BB edit backup folder, by the way. Apparently I must have started fresh on this machine because

⏹️ ▶️ John the oldest folder is from November 16th, 2008. Wow, that’s awesome.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco There’s no reason why Apple can’t do this with that, because we have that

⏹️ ▶️ Marco weird local time machine thing. I’ve never had a good concept of how and when and why

⏹️ ▶️ Marco this works, but there is that concept of local time machine snapshots when you don’t have a remote disk or when you’re

⏹️ ▶️ Marco not near it.

⏹️ ▶️ John Even if you do, it still doesn’t. even if you have a remote disk, it’s always doing local snapshot backups now.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Right, so in theory, it should be really fast and easy to, you know, some

⏹️ ▶️ Marco files that you modified last night to be able to go back, assuming you have any free disk space at all, to be able to go back and

⏹️ ▶️ Marco say, and just the OS should be able to do all that locally, just say, all right, give me this file from last night. I don’t know

⏹️ ▶️ Marco if it’s that easy in practice.

⏹️ ▶️ John Yeah, it is fast to do it if you do it from the command line and know how to do all the magic, but the UI, like you said,

⏹️ ▶️ John it seems silly, But when they got rid of the space vortex UI, it’s like things went downhill

⏹️ ▶️ John after that. That was like the most frivolous, fanciful, what was the

⏹️ ▶️ John word we’re always using when we’re talking about?

⏹️ ▶️ John, Tiff Arment Whimsical.

⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco Whimsical, yeah.

⏹️ ▶️ John Interface, right? And it’s like, well, maybe it’s kind of too whimsical. Maybe they should just improve it only. What they did was

⏹️ ▶️ John they got rid of the whimsy and did not improve it in any other way. And now every time I go into the interface,

⏹️ ▶️ John I’m frustrated at how slow it is, especially with the Synology

⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco time machine

⏹️ ▶️ John backup over the network. So navigating that interface and getting to the point where you can initiate a restore can take

⏹️ ▶️ John forever. And it’s,

⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco yeah,

⏹️ ▶️ John it’s bad. But anyway, you can do it from the command line. You can access those things. It’s inexcusable that they don’t have

⏹️ ▶️ John a very fast lookup of local snapshot stuff like Marcos. You should be able to right click a file in the finder

⏹️ ▶️ John and say, show me all the local snapshot versions of this file and then just pick one and restart.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Isn’t there that revision system? I’ve never used that either. That’s a

⏹️ ▶️ John different thing.

⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco Why is that a different thing?

⏹️ ▶️ John Because that was for saving file versions. It wasn’t the same as like Time Machine local

⏹️ ▶️ John snapshots of your whole disk. They might be both use ABFS

⏹️ ▶️ John snapshot at this point, but I actually honestly, I don’t think they do. The file version thing started out using this weird

⏹️ ▶️ John SQLite database with diffs in it. And it was this terrifying thing that I’m glad more applications didn’t adopt

⏹️ ▶️ John because honestly, it’s just, yeah.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey Right, so I agree with you that in a perfect world, I would prefer to have Time Machine, no doubt. But I

⏹️ ▶️ Casey cannot remember the last time I’ve restored anything from Time Machine, in part because it’s so slow, in part because

⏹️ ▶️ Casey it’s on the Synology. I mean, a lot of this is my own choices, but I am willing to sacrifice Time

⏹️ ▶️ Casey Machine in order to get a redundant copy of my data, again, understanding that it’s on the same

⏹️ ▶️ Casey physical device, et cetera, et cetera, et cetera. So, Marco, you sound like you’re not

⏹️ ▶️ Casey too keen on this idea, even in the future state where I can get a hard drive easily and all

⏹️ ▶️ Casey the backups have been done, et cetera, et cetera.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco First of all, I don’t think it’s worth losing the functionality of Time Machine for a RAID 0

⏹️ ▶️ Marco copy of this data. Even though I do use a RAID 0

⏹️ ▶️ Marco array for Time Machine. But

⏹️ ▶️ Marco, Casey again,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco and that’s because when I set this up, that was actually a large amount of disk space. Now it’s not.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco And if I was setting it up again today, I wouldn’t be doing this. But you are setting it up again today and that’s why I’m suggesting

⏹️ ▶️ Marco that you go with simpler solutions because drives are so big and so cheap

⏹️ ▶️ Marco has not grown with the size of drives. They’ve grown a lot faster.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco I suggest still leaning towards simpler solutions. Like if you still want Time Machine,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco either put in one or two disks not in RAID and use that for Time Machine.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco They don’t have to be very big because your built-in SSD isn’t that big. So they can be pretty modestly

⏹️ ▶️ Marco sized drives and you can put them in RAID 1 or just have a single disk and have that

⏹️ ▶️ Marco due time machine with no redundancy at all, because it doesn’t matter that much. But yeah,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco for your actual like other copy of this data that you have, I still suggest getting

⏹️ ▶️ Marco another Best Buy parking lot drive if you can, and just having it be on a drive

⏹️ ▶️ Marco that is basically put in cold storage, that you unplug, that is not being run until this

⏹️ ▶️ Marco backup is done, and then you repurpose it for whatever you need.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey All right, John, at this point, what is your thought?

⏹️ ▶️ John Margo already hit the main point I wanted to, which is I didn’t hear you say that you had gotten a second 12

⏹️ ▶️ John terabyte drive. Like so, that should be step zero in your thing. You didn’t mention it. Margo,

⏹️ ▶️ John I just do that for crying out loud. As for the time machine thing, two

⏹️ ▶️ John points on that. One, even after all the dust settles and the backblaze thing is done,

⏹️ ▶️ John yada, yada, yada, it still never feels good to me to even momentarily, quote unquote

⏹️ ▶️ John momentarily, reduce the number of copies of files that you have, right?

⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco So saying,

⏹️ ▶️ John oh, well, those time machine anyway, and I’m gonna rebuild it in a second so I can just get rid of these backups and then I’ll just, I’ll

⏹️ ▶️ John remake, you know, I’ll remake a new backup somewhere, whether you use Arc or Time Machine or whatever. During the time

⏹️ ▶️ John between when you tear that down, you’re like, ah, it’s not a big deal, I’m just gonna make it again. You’ve lost one copy of all the data that’s

⏹️ ▶️ John on that. And so it’s better to make an additional copy before you lose that one So then the number of copies

⏹️ ▶️ John of your data doesn’t go down. You bring it up briefly, then bring it back down to what it was. That’s that point. Second point is,

⏹️ ▶️ John I like the idea of you continuing to use Time Machine because, like for sort of

⏹️ ▶️ John diversity of backup software, right? So rather than having

⏹️ ▶️ John five super duper backups, I’d rather have one super duper, one arc, one backblaze, and one Time Machine. Because all these pieces of

⏹️ ▶️ John software have their own bugs and their own, you know, upgrade cycles and their own potential

⏹️ ▶️ John for mistakes, and so on and so forth. Having more of them gives you more biodiversity

⏹️ ▶️ John in terms of if some plague comes, and it

⏹️ ▶️ John, Tiff Arment only

⏹️ ▶️ John affects AWS, or it only affects Backblaze, or it only affects Time Machine, you always have something else. And in

⏹️ ▶️ John particular, the upgrades. The Time Machine one changes when a major new OS comes out, and it totally changes the way Time Machine works. And

⏹️ ▶️ John I could totally bork your Time Machine backup, which is why it’s good that you back up with something other than Time Machine.

⏹️ ▶️ John Same is true of Backblaze. Same is true of Arc. if you have a bug in one of those things or super duper,

⏹️ ▶️ John you know, it gets hosed by some version, uh, upgrade version of the operating system, but time machine still works because Apple

⏹️ ▶️ John makes that one. Uh, I’m very heavily in favor of keeping a time machine backup just

⏹️ ▶️ John to have just, just because it’s one more backup program. And also, by the way, it’s the backup program that thus

⏹️ ▶️ John far is ostensibly supported by the platform vendor. So pretty much guaranteed to work.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey Yeah, I agree with all that. But again, I think the difference between the two of you

⏹️ ▶️ Casey guys and me is that I genuinely, and maybe I’m lying to myself, but I genuinely consider

⏹️ ▶️ Casey the data that is on my computers less valuable to me than the data that is on that Synology. I would

⏹️ ▶️ Casey much rather lose all the data on my iMac Pro than lose all the data on my Synology.

⏹️ ▶️ John On that point, by the way, the recent versions of Time Machine have an option, a checkbox hidden in the little options thing

⏹️ ▶️ John that says, don’t back up system files or applications. So if you check that box, it won’t

⏹️ ▶️ John waste its time backing up your operating system, which is on a read-only volume anyway, and you can’t customize it all. And it won’t

⏹️ ▶️ John bother backing up your applications, which it assumes you can re-download or get from the App Store or whatever. It will only back

⏹️ ▶️ John up whatever data you happen to have in the thing. And I know you think it’s ephemeral, but you actually do produce

⏹️ ▶️ John data that hangs out there. And if you accidentally delete something you had in your desktop yesterday, you’re going to be happy to be

⏹️ ▶️ John able to get it back from Time Machine or wherever.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey Yeah, I agree with everything you said. I think it’s just from my perspective, if I have to choose one, even

⏹️ ▶️ Casey for just a little while while I’m doing some dancing around with data in the Synology, I would choose a duplicate of the Synology

⏹️ ▶️ Casey data. So okay, so it sounds like you guys aren’t going to like what step two was hypothetically going to

⏹️ ▶️ Casey be. So my hypothetical step one was nuke the time machine volume, like I’d said, put in a

⏹️ ▶️ Casey bigger drive so that I can get a over 10 terabyte

⏹️ ▶️ Casey array out of two disks, copy everything from the big

⏹️ ▶️ Casey six disk array into this two disk array. Then I was starting to think,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey this bit rot thing is starting to mess with my head. What if I do indeed

⏹️ ▶️ Casey nuke at this point, when I have two copies of the data on the Synology, I nuke the big array

⏹️ ▶️ Casey and redo it all with BTRFS or ButterFS or whatever it’s supposed to be called, possibly

⏹️ ▶️ Casey even with two-drive redundancy if I can, and then I bring everything back from that RAID zero array

⏹️ ▶️ Casey to the new butter file system, BTRFS file system,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey six disk array, and then at that point, if I want to go back to using Time Machine on that two disk array, then so be it.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey And I was hoping that I would win you over here, John, but perhaps

⏹️ ▶️ John not. But you can totally do that, but just follow the thing that I said before. Don’t reduce the number of copies. If you want to do that,

⏹️ ▶️ John and I think you should, it’s a good idea, you can’t do that until you get that data to one more location.

⏹️ ▶️ John So increase the number of locations that data is stored. This is above and beyond the other 12 terabyte Best Buy drive that you’re going

⏹️ ▶️ John to get. You’re going to get one more of them now, and you’re going to copy it to a third location. Then you are free to nuke

⏹️ ▶️ John your thing. You make a new BTRFS thing, blah, blah, blah, and put it back. This is

⏹️ ▶️ John the discipline. This is the system. Do not reduce the number of redundant copies. And as long as

⏹️ ▶️ John you follow that rule, you can feel free to experiment.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey Well, in my hypothetical, I am increasing the number, well, briefly increasing the number of redundant copies.

⏹️ ▶️ John But at the cost of killing your time machine backups, which you think you don’t

⏹️ ▶️ John, Casey need. Yeah, but who

⏹️ ▶️ John cares? I don’t care about my time machine backups. Don’t you back up more than just your computer and time machine isn’t like the laptop backed up on there

⏹️ ▶️ John Don’t you know everything in the house to that one big volume?

⏹️ ▶️ Casey There’s three machines going to that one big volume. It’s Aaron’s MacBook Air that that’s been underwater

⏹️ ▶️ Casey seven times Which probably needs a backup more than any?

⏹️ ▶️ John It’s not just your computer. It’s three. I’m in the same situation We have the whole houses computers are backed up to my time machine thing

⏹️ ▶️ John on the Synology and I wouldn’t wipe that thing unless I had redundant copies of all of those computers because if

⏹️ ▶️ John you wipe that thing you’re like, I don’t need it, it’s fine. And then, you know, someone needs some file on that computer or it finally

⏹️ ▶️ John succumbs to another glass of water or whatever. Like, just, you can’t, it’s

⏹️ ▶️ John like a slide puzzle, right? You’re trying to find

⏹️ ▶️ John, Casey a free

⏹️ ▶️ John space. You’ve got to get more spaces. You’ve got to get more drives and put the stuff on it.

⏹️ ▶️ John And it won’t be wasted money because, you know, those drives, what was the email we got

⏹️ ▶️ John referred to as shucking the drives, like an ear of corn. I loved hearing that. That was so great.

⏹️ ▶️ John You peel off the outer layer and you get, Interestingly someone also had feedback that occasionally

⏹️ ▶️ John You’ll shuck a drive and the mechanism inside there will have some weirdness about its SATA connector

⏹️ ▶️ John Where it won’t actually work out of the box if you take the mechanism and put inside your thing unless you like Customize

⏹️ ▶️ John the cable to you know, I forget what the details were But there’s there’s some difference on the cables and voltages

⏹️ ▶️ John expected They won’t make it work until you pack with it a little bit, which is super annoying but still technically possible

⏹️ ▶️ John to overcome

⏹️ ▶️ Casey All right, fine. Then I thought you were gonna be all on board with this btrfs idea

⏹️ ▶️ John I mean, we’re on board with it, just not on board with you reducing your redundancy. Wait for your things to finish, make, get your second 12

⏹️ ▶️ John terabyte backup, get in it, anything other move you want to make, you need to get a new square on the tile

⏹️ ▶️ John puzzle. put the stuff there and now you have a free spot that you can mess with.

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PS5 controller

Chapter PS5 controller image.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco offer, slash ATP. Thank you so much to Eero for fixing our

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Wi-Fi and sponsoring our show.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey I have a I actually am interested in talking about video game stuff, but we’re going to

⏹️ ▶️ Casey do most of that later. However, you, John, need to complete

⏹️ ▶️ Casey or further along, perhaps an arc that started many, many years ago.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey There is a new controller out and I know you have not handled it in your hands,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey but continuing the classic episode number 49 of Hypercritical from January

⏹️ ▶️ Casey 6, 2012, eight years ago now, would you please, John, critique the new PlayStation controller

⏹️ ▶️ Casey to the best of your ability? John

⏹️ ▶️ John Greenewald This is a weird, like, slow rollout of the PlayStation hardware reveal. Microsoft has revealed

⏹️ ▶️ John basically everything about their hardware, their controller, the box, we talked about it in past shows or whatever. Sony

⏹️ ▶️ John has been trying to challenge them with press release or press release, but not revealing as much. So

⏹️ ▶️ John they had a separate press release and blog post just about the PS5 controller. So they

⏹️ ▶️ John told us the PS5 specs, they told us the performance, they told us stuff about the 3D audio, they told us all sorts of things but we still

⏹️ ▶️ John haven’t seen it. Here now is the controller. I feel like these,

⏹️ ▶️ John the sort of, you know, I was going to say the big boy consoles or whatever,

⏹️ ▶️ John, Tiff Arment let’s say

⏹️ ▶️ John the non-portable consoles because the Switch, Nintendo is all in on portable

⏹️ ▶️ John hybrid thing or whatever and thus far Sony and Microsoft are not desktop

⏹️ ▶️ John consoles yeah there you go and among those their controllers have not

⏹️ ▶️ John been particularly daring Microsoft got burned by the Kinect probably rightfully so

⏹️ ▶️ John that turned out not to be the future of how we control our video games even though it was really cool technology

⏹️ ▶️ John and but both systems have not really been interested in changing their standard controller

⏹️ ▶️ John much. And so the new PS5 controller, it looks

⏹️ ▶️ John striking and new. It’s got this two-tone appearance, it’s kind of futuristic looking, it looks, you know,

⏹️ ▶️ John I was trying to discuss in one of the slacks, like, what does this look like? There’s a sort of future look that

⏹️ ▶️ John has been used in movies and art on science fiction magazines and everything for decades.

⏹️ ▶️ John I was trying to think of where it originates. The sort of white outer shell

⏹️ ▶️ John with glimpses of sort of a black interior where the machinery is. So the white

⏹️ ▶️ John outer shell is very smooth and matte finish or maybe glossy but very sort of

⏹️ ▶️ John smooth and you know characterized by joints

⏹️ ▶️ John and lines and then with certain regions where you can peek into the interior. In some respects like Eve from WALL-E

⏹️ ▶️ John is a little bit like this but she doesn’t have the thing where you see the interior. Anyway, that’s what this controller looks like. We’ll put a link in the description. Like

⏹️ ▶️ John a Stormtrooper. Yeah, Stormtrooper is like that a little bit too, but again, it’s not like you’re seeing into it. They just have regions that are black.

⏹️ ▶️ John This is more of an outer shell type thing. You can find lots of examples, and I was wondering, is there one artist that pioneered this in the 60s

⏹️ ▶️ John or something? But it’s… I couldn’t trace it to its origins. Every time I think I found an older

⏹️ ▶️ John one, someone goes back farther. Depending on how you characterize it, someone’s like, look at this, here’s 2001 and the 60s. But

⏹️ ▶️ John the 2001 has the white outer stuff, but not the black inner stuff? Anyway, it’s cool looking controller.

⏹️ ▶️ John All this is to say fine. It looks cool It has very different striking look,

⏹️ ▶️ John but it’s not actually that different from the ps4 controller the ps4 controller I don’t remember

⏹️ ▶️ John if we talked about in the show or I must have at some point but anyway ps4 controller blessedly fixed

⏹️ ▶️ John many things that were wrong with the ps3 ps2 and original PlayStation controller

⏹️ ▶️ John but it still stuck to the basics. Two analog sticks in the sort of lower middle part,

⏹️ ▶️ John a d-pad in the upper left, and four symmetrical equally sized buttons

⏹️ ▶️ John on the right. And then some triggers and they’ve messed with that a little bit. This new controller

⏹️ ▶️ John is like an optical illusion. When I first saw it I was like, oh well, at least they’ve gotten rid of one of

⏹️ ▶️ John them. You know one of my big pet peeves is when you make a controller as if it’s like a

⏹️ ▶️ John a piece of art or like it’s interior space in a house or something

⏹️ ▶️ John where you make everything at 90 degrees and 45 degrees, right? Because that’s not

⏹️ ▶️ John what hands look like. Their hands are not at right angles. They do not have sharp edges

⏹️ ▶️ John and they are not all 45s and 90s. It looks good when you make a thing that where

⏹️ ▶️ John the buttons are exactly at the four corners of a diamond and the buttons are all exactly the same shape,

⏹️ ▶️ John but that has no bearing on how your hands or your thumb lands on a controller

⏹️ ▶️ John that you’re holding in your hands. None whatsoever. And I’ve always been angry about all the buttons being the

⏹️ ▶️ John same size because there are very few games where you use all four buttons equally.

⏹️ ▶️ John Most games have a dominant button, a second most dominant button, like a tertiary button.

⏹️ ▶️ John Anyway, all that aside, this looks like, oh, they finally made it so that the buttons

⏹️ ▶️ John and the d-pad aren’t on these little perfectly circular perfectly flat and level

⏹️ ▶️ John you know plateaus like they are in the ps4 controller which is one of the few remaining sort of

⏹️ ▶️ John parts of the ps4 controller that say no we can’t get away with it we love perfect geometry

⏹️ ▶️ John we love perfect circles right angles you know perfect cones straight lines be just because they look

⏹️ ▶️ John good the ps4 controller did away with almost all of that they said let’s make it a sort of

⏹️ ▶️ John you know, bulbous shape that fits people’s hands better, but still

⏹️ ▶️ John put two perfect circles exactly flat to host the buttons in the d-pad.

⏹️ ▶️ John And make those buttons and d-pads exactly vertical with the controller, you know, vertical and horizontal,

⏹️ ▶️ John north-south, east-west, like they’re not tilted in any way, despite that they know your hands and fingers are gonna be coming in on them

⏹️ ▶️ John in an angle. Which is not necessarily bad, especially since people are kind of used to that, but still,

⏹️ ▶️ John it’s a jarring sort of departure from the design language. This one looks like, oh, everything is organic and curvy. No

⏹️ ▶️ John longer do you have these circular plateaus. And it looks like they twisted the buttons to sort of align

⏹️ ▶️ John better with your hands. Which, by the way, the X-Tox controller does and has done for its entire life. Its

⏹️ ▶️ John buttons are laid out to try to be comfortable for your fingers, not to be perfectly

⏹️ ▶️ John vertical and horizontal when looked at in like a plan view in a CAD file. But I took out my trusty

⏹️ ▶️ John X-Scope on my Mac and pulled out some guides, and And lo and behold,

⏹️ ▶️ John all of the buttons are still exactly aligned as they used to be. They just look like they might be twisted,

⏹️ ▶️ John but they are not. So the circular plateaus are gone, but the buttons and the joysticks seem to be in exactly

⏹️ ▶️ John the same positions as they were before. The only thing that they’ve done to make a concession for increased

⏹️ ▶️ John ergonomics is they have tilted the triggers slightly. The triggers used to be more or less,

⏹️ ▶️ John again, completely like if you drew a straight line through the triggers

⏹️ ▶️ John like a 90 degree angle to their hinges, it would just go straight up right?

⏹️ ▶️ John These look like they are tilted again like the Xbox triggers tilted slightly outwards because they know

⏹️ ▶️ John your fingers are coming from the sides on them and they want to tilt them a little bit so they’re more comfortable.

⏹️ ▶️ John But other than that, and of course, you know, they moved like the the options button, they changed the touchpad shape

⏹️ ▶️ John and they did some other stuff like that they made the PlayStation button into a weird raised logo thing. There’s a microphone built in which I think is

⏹️ ▶️ John very smart. Although probably sounds like garbage but it’s better than better than nothing

⏹️ ▶️ John it’s good to be built into the controller anyway I haven’t held this thing but

⏹️ ▶️ John it basically looks like a dressed up ps4 controller I hope it is as comfortable as the ps4

⏹️ ▶️ John controller because I like the ps4 controller it looks a little bit fatter and Sony emphasized that they had worked hard

⏹️ ▶️ John to make it feel slim even though it’s bigger the reason it’s bigger I think is because they’re

⏹️ ▶️ John hiding more sort of haptic engines like Apple’s little what are they called those little

⏹️ ▶️ John uh, inductor, widgety, shaky,

⏹️ ▶️ John, Casey fancy.

⏹️ ▶️ John Yeah, like, but it’s, but it’s like a, it’s like a linear coil thing of, it’s, it’s a more sophisticated way to make things

⏹️ ▶️ John vibrate. And they’ve put more of those and more sophisticated versions of those inside this controller, which take up room. They

⏹️ ▶️ John also have them on the triggers themselves to like to have tension on the triggers or something. So

⏹️ ▶️ John there’s more crap inside there, which is why they had to make it bigger. But honestly, like I’m looking at it all

⏹️ ▶️ John the different angles. It doesn’t look that much bigger than the PS4 controller, and like right down to

⏹️ ▶️ John the edges of the thing and the cut lines, it looks like it will, you know, not be

⏹️ ▶️ John a shock to anyone who has a PS4. Which is fine, I like the PS4 controller, fine. It

⏹️ ▶️ John could be improved. If the only improvement to this is that the triggers are a little bit more comfortable,

⏹️ ▶️ John, Casey you

⏹️ ▶️ John know, I’ll take it I suppose. But anyway, that’s that PS5 controller. It is not a disaster,

⏹️ ▶️ John it looks mostly fine. Still don’t know what the console looks like.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey Now John, you have or have not ever owned a PlayStation in the past, I don’t recall.

⏹️ ▶️ John I have a PlayStation 3 and a PlayStation 2.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey But no, I’m getting myself confused. It’s the Xbox that you refused

⏹️ ▶️ Casey, John to buy. No, I have not. Yeah. Okay,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey sorry. On an Xbox. Gotcha. So no Halo for you because you played the original whatever it

⏹️ ▶️ Casey, John was called.

⏹️ ▶️ John I played Halo on the Mac.

⏹️ ▶️ John, Casey Yeah,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey, John there

⏹️ ▶️ Casey it is. What was that called? Marathon or

⏹️ ▶️ Casey, John something like that? You’re the only person. No, I

⏹️ ▶️ John played actual Halo on the actual Mac. Because I was promised it at Macworld!

⏹️ ▶️ John And I did, and I played it, and the framework was terrible, but damn it, I played that game and I finished it. pretty good.

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Raspberry Pi & Pi-hole

⏹️ ▶️ Marco slash ATP get a $20 credit with promo code ATP 2020. Thank you

⏹️ ▶️ Marco so much to Linode for hosting my stuff and sponsoring our show.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey I’d like to talk to you about my new favorite toy and for me

⏹️ ▶️ Casey I have fallen in love with the thing I’ve been waiting to fall in love with I just couldn’t find a reason.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey I love the Raspberry Pi. If you are not familiar we talked about this probably a year or two

⏹️ ▶️ Casey back, because you used a Raspberry Pi for your short-lived, question mark, uh, stereo

⏹️ ▶️ Casey thing, right, Marco?

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Yeah, I did a few experiments with them back, uh, I talked about on the show about, like, kind of making, like, a, like, a card

⏹️ ▶️ Marco record player kind of thing, where, like, I, I had this NFC reader that I could, like, stick a

⏹️ ▶️ Marco card for an album in front of, and it would start playing that album into my speakers. And so it was

⏹️ ▶️ Marco kind of, like, simulating, you know, an old CD or record player, but, you know, in a modern way.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco It’s still sitting over there.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco, Tiff Arment I wonder

⏹️ ▶️ Marco if it’s still

⏹️ ▶️ Marco, Tiff Arment working. I haven’t

⏹️ ▶️ Marco, Casey gotten near it in a long

⏹️ ▶️ Marco time.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey Fair enough. So, if you’re not familiar with the Raspberry Pi, I might get the particular slightly wrong, but the general gist of

⏹️ ▶️ Casey it is, it’s a full, honest-to-goodness, Linux-based computer that’s,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey at its most expensive, something like 50 bucks. And, granted, when

⏹️ ▶️ Casey I say 50 bucks, you’re literally getting a motherboard, and that’s it. You don’t have a power supply, you don’t have a keyboard, you don’t have a

⏹️ ▶️ Casey monitor, nothing. But you can get an entire computer for 50 bones.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey Like that’s really not bad. And not a bad computer at that. Yeah, and it’s not a bad computer. Like this is a

⏹️ ▶️ Casey computer that can drive two 4K displays for 50 bucks. Now

⏹️ ▶️ Casey it’s Linux-based, which obviously has its own long list of problems, but we’ll get to that in a minute.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey But nevertheless, it is 50 bucks. You can get the Pi, so that’s for the Raspberry Pi 4, And that’s for the four

⏹️ ▶️ Casey gigabytes of RAM model. They have another one that’s two gigabytes of RAM. That’s like 10 bucks cheaper or something like that.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey They also have a Pi Zero, which is a physically smaller and far less powerful Raspberry

⏹️ ▶️ Casey Pi. I believe it’s $10 for the one with a wireless, with a wireless

⏹️ ▶️ Casey chip on it. So you can get on, you know, 802.11b WiFi. And it’s, I think, literally $5 for

⏹️ ▶️ Casey an entire computer if you don’t want WiFi. It is bananas

⏹️ ▶️ Casey how cheap these computers are. And I’ve wanted one for the longest time. I couldn’t figure out what I was

⏹️ ▶️ Casey going to do with it, though. Now, put that aside for a second. I told you guys, I think, like, maybe six months

⏹️ ▶️ Casey or a year ago, I had installed PyHole onto a Docker container on my Synology.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey Now, PyHole is a… It was originally, as far as I’m aware, originally

⏹️ ▶️ Casey was written to run on a Raspberry Pi, and what it does is it’s a DNS server where it

⏹️ ▶️ Casey will not reply to DNS requests less for things that it knows are

⏹️ ▶️ Casey ads. So your computer, if it’s using your Pihole as DNS server, it’ll go to, say,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey And CNN is adorned with nothing but ads everywhere you look.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey And so it says to the Pihole software, running presumably on a Raspberry Pi, in my case, it was on a Docker

⏹️ ▶️ Casey container in my Synology, hey, I’d like to go to

⏹️ ▶️ Casey or what have you. And the Pihole would say, I don’t know where that is. Tough noogies. And so

⏹️ ▶️ Casey the net effect of that is you don’t see an ad. There is no ad. And so among other things, it actually

⏹️ ▶️ Casey saves a little bit of bandwidth if you care, because you’re not downloading whatever that image or JavaScript or gosh knows

⏹️ ▶️ Casey what is. So it worked out really well. But then, I don’t know, maybe

⏹️ ▶️ Casey three or four months ago, Verizon Fios, at least where I am, started turning on IPv6. And

⏹️ ▶️ Casey all of a sudden, I was seeing ads all the time. And it turns out maybe Fios was on IPv6 for a while.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey Maybe it’s that Google’s AdWords went on IPv6. I don’t know what it was, but it seemed

⏹️ ▶️ Casey to me that something decided to turn on IPv6. And I was suddenly seeing ads everywhere all

⏹️ ▶️ Casey the time. And I started investigating, okay, how do I get IPv6 into the Docker container

⏹️ ▶️ Casey on the Synology? And I’m sure that there’s fairly easy ways to do that when you’re not on a Synology, but

⏹️ ▶️ Casey when you’re on the Synology, it was not easy. And so finally, finally, gentlemen,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey I have a reason to buy my $50 computer, because I to run Pi hole

⏹️ ▶️ Casey and I want to run it on Raspberry Pi where I know I have more control over the networking and so on and so forth. So

⏹️ ▶️ Casey for my birthday, I had asked for and received the Canakit Raspberry Pi 4GB

⏹️ ▶️ Casey Starter Max Kit. And the reason I got this is because I knew nothing about what I was doing and I knew this would have everything

⏹️ ▶️ Casey I needed within that box, which was completely true. If I were to do this again, now that I know

⏹️ ▶️ Casey sort of what I’m doing, I would go a different route. But if you’re like me and don’t really know what the hell

⏹️ ▶️ Casey is going on, this works out really well. You can get them on Amazon, you can get them directly from Caniket. And so what it includes is a Raspberry

⏹️ ▶️ Casey Pi 4, it includes a microSD card, which is effectively the quote-unquote hard drive for the Raspberry Pi, it includes

⏹️ ▶️ Casey a microSD card reader for your computer computer, it includes a case with a fan mount and a

⏹️ ▶️ Casey fan, it includes a power supply, some heat sinks for the CPU, I think the GPU, and maybe the USB

⏹️ ▶️ Casey controller or something like that, I forget what else. It includes two micro HDMI to HDMI cables because

⏹️ ▶️ Casey the Raspberry Pi is so physically small. It’s roughly the same surface area of a credit card.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey So in order to get HDMI out, there are actually little teeny tiny micro HDMI ports.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey And so there are two cables to go to regular HDMI ports. And it also,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey interestingly, it included a USB-C switch that just interrupts power

⏹️ ▶️ Casey if you want, because there’s no power switch on the Raspberry Pi. that was $115. So it was like

⏹️ ▶️ Casey a little over twice the cost of the entire raspberry pi, but which is silly. And again, I probably wouldn’t do it

⏹️ ▶️ Casey again, knowing what I know now, but ultimately like $115 is not nothing, but it’s

⏹️ ▶️ Casey not that much money. And I got the entire setup and I’m happy as a pig in poop.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey And I put in my pie hole. I followed this really nice setup guide and I did not use like the,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey the make your a raspberry pi be only a pie hole thing. I actually installed

⏹️ ▶️ Casey it myself on top of Raspbian, which is a Linux distro specifically oriented around the Raspberry

⏹️ ▶️ Casey Pi. And so now I can use my Raspberry Pi for other things, which is going to become relevant in like 10 seconds.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey But I got to tell you, this thing is so freaking cool. Like,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey the Raspberry Pi is amazing. And I think what makes it so appealing to me

⏹️ ▶️ Casey is that I really I really am impressed with

⏹️ ▶️ Casey how good the ecosystem is. When you install Raspbian,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey which is again like the default Linux distro, it includes X Windows and in X Windows,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey it has some stuff to get you going like a Python ID if you so desire. It has

⏹️ ▶️ Casey configuration that’s specifically for the Raspberry Pi. But then if you drop down to the command line, if you don’t like X Windows,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey hey, guess what? There’s a command line, whole menuing system for doing all the same stuff.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey So if you want to turn on or off Wi-Fi, and you want or if you want to set up some, I can’t think of any good examples

⏹️ ▶️ Casey off the top of my head, but there’s all sorts of stuff that has this reasonably easy, reasonably straightforward user

⏹️ ▶️ Casey interface, even on the command line, like even the SSH, you can do this stuff. It’s amazing. And

⏹️ ▶️ Casey that’s what I think is so cool about the Raspberry Pi. You could probably create an equivalent computer for way cheaper,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey but the ecosystem around it is just amazing. And there’s so many examples of, oh, I

⏹️ ▶️ Casey want to add a push button to run a shell script. And oh, okay, you need these three parts and you need this shell script running

⏹️ ▶️ Casey in Python and you’ll be right as rain in 10 minutes flat. It is amazing. And this is the coolest

⏹️ ▶️ Casey little toy I’ve ever seen. So I’ve been talking a lot. I will give Marco a chance. I would actually really

⏹️ ▶️ Casey like to hear, Marco, what your thoughts are. But very quickly, John, you do not have one of these in the house. Is that correct?

⏹️ ▶️ John John Williams I think I’m in the same situation as you used to be in. And I think as Marco used to be in is like, this

⏹️ ▶️ John definitely seems cool to me, but I don’t have a use case for it. like and I’ve never been

⏹️ ▶️ John able to say, well, even though you don’t know what you use it for, you should just get it because then it would be like I would just like set it up and just stare at it.

⏹️ ▶️ John Like so, you know, it definitely does seem cool. And, you know, this is I think this is part

⏹️ ▶️ John of the Raspberry Pi happened because like, you know, when you’re not paying attention,

⏹️ ▶️ John you know, that this is as the price of compute goes to zero, computers can get very small and do lots of

⏹️ ▶️ John interesting things like this. If you look at the specs on this, these specs would be fantasy for

⏹️ ▶️ John a childhood version of me looking at the specs of computers. Oh, yeah. But this stuff is so

⏹️ ▶️ John cheap and so small. You look at what it includes, like, as you noted, the main problem with this in terms

⏹️ ▶️ John of the current technological landscape is that modern connectors for as small as they are, are

⏹️ ▶️ John so big that they are the they are the major hardware problem with this, that you can’t physically fit

⏹️ ▶️ John connectors of all the kinds that it can support. So you have to have this little, you know, funnel of adapters going from

⏹️ ▶️ John micro HDMI to regular HDMI or USB C to USB A. and yeah, so

⏹️ ▶️ John it’s kind of funny. It’ll be, you know, I’m hoping that all of our connectors

⏹️ ▶️ John will continue to, I don’t know if they can continue to shrink that much, because eventually, they’ll be about

⏹️ ▶️ John the size of the wires that they connect to, but that seems to be the major barrier here, because

⏹️ ▶️ John the price of compute and the price of memory and SSDs and all that stuff will continue to go down, and if you’re just

⏹️ ▶️ John doing something like running Linux on it with no major sort of GUI, or even if you are running a GUI,

⏹️ ▶️ John doing basic stuff is very easy, which is why we have all those conversations about, oh, can I do

⏹️ ▶️ John development on a Mac Mini? Can I do development on a MacBook Air? Sure, yeah. Modern computers are very powerful if what you’re

⏹️ ▶️ John doing is text editing and compiling and stuff like that. So I find these things fascinating

⏹️ ▶️ John and I’m on the lookout for anything in my life where I might need something like this, but thus

⏹️ ▶️ John far, nothing.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey All right. Now, Marco, you and I have a lot to talk about that’s kind of off to the side and I’d like to keep that off to the side just for a minute.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey But with regard to the Raspberry Pi itself. How do you really touch them in between

⏹️ ▶️ Casey the jukebox time and now? What is your Raspberry Pi situation at home?

⏹️ ▶️ Marco It’s basically been like John’s. I had that project I did back, whatever it was, two years ago, a year

⏹️ ▶️ Marco ago, whenever that was, I did that project and it was fun. I played with it a lot for a couple of weeks

⏹️ ▶️ Marco when I was doing that. And then I ran out of things to do with it. And so I just kind of set that hobby aside

⏹️ ▶️ Marco for a while until recently when when I came up with something better to do with it, which will be our next segment, but we’ll get there in

⏹️ ▶️ Marco a minute. Really, for me, it’s very much like, I didn’t want to keep tinkering

⏹️ ▶️ Marco with it into like, well, what else can I do with this thing? I had a specific purpose, I did it,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco and it was great for that, and then once I got tired of that purpose or I moved on or it was done, then

⏹️ ▶️ Marco I just kind of left it until I had something else to do with it.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey Jim C.: Yeah, and it’s funny because the software

⏹️ ▶️ Casey tooling that Raspberry Pi and Raspbian have put together, you still can’t avoid the fact that

⏹️ ▶️ Casey it’s Linux. And so, like for me to set up a, like, and I know that there’s a little bit of wonkiness

⏹️ ▶️ Casey with regard to IPv6, and I know that I don’t know basically anything about it, but suffice to say, I wanted to

⏹️ ▶️ Casey set up a consistent IP address on both IPv4 and IPv6

⏹️ ▶️ Casey for the Raspberry Pi. So this way I can have my heroes use the Raspberry Pi

⏹️ ▶️ Casey as the DNS server. So this way, when any of my devices come on my network, they will look to the Raspberry Pi

⏹️ ▶️ Casey for the DNS server, which means you need a static IP. Well, for IPv4, that’s very easy. You can just go into the Eero

⏹️ ▶️ Casey app and it’s 30 seconds and you’re done. But, ooh, did I have to dig and screw with

⏹️ ▶️ Casey config files all over the place in order to figure out how to get an IPv6 reservation, not reservation, but reservation

⏹️ ▶️ Casey squared away. I did get it, though, and it seems like everything’s fine across many reboots and so on and so forth.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey But that’s the thing is I got the Pi-hole set up, and this is way too much Raspberry Pi just for Pi-hole. Like

⏹️ ▶️ Casey I could have gotten a much cheaper and much simpler one. I probably could have gotten away with the

⏹️ ▶️ Casey Pi-0. You know, I wanted an ethernet port, but that being said, I probably could have gotten away with that $10 one

⏹️ ▶️ Casey just if all I wanted to do with it was Pi-hole. But I specifically got the best one I possibly could

⏹️ ▶️ Casey because I figured I might want to do something else with it. And after I’d finished my configuration

⏹️ ▶️ Casey of Pi-hole and didn’t really have much else to do, I immediately needed a new project, like Marco was saying.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey And so it occurred to me, wait a second.


⏹️ ▶️ Casey I know people are using these for emulation,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey and I got literally the best Raspberry Pi one can get, all $50 of it, as of, you

⏹️ ▶️ Casey know, three weeks ago. Maybe I should dip my toe into this whole emulation thing.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey And, oh my word, this has been a ride, and it’s been amazing.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco So, Casey, what game console are you using right now?

⏹️ ▶️ Casey Well, it’s a miracle that I’ve participated in this show at all, because I have all kinds

⏹️ ▶️ Casey of game consoles on my Raspberry Pi right now. I have been reliving my childhood

⏹️ ▶️ Casey on my Raspberry Pi. So very, very, very briefly, I think like John was

⏹️ ▶️ Casey brought up on the Nintendo, I was very envious of those with the Genesis, Marco,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey but I was a Nintendo guy through and through. And let me tell you, I have been going hog

⏹️ ▶️ Casey wild playing all these old Nintendo games that I loved. I’ve been, I haven’t spent

⏹️ ▶️ Casey a lot of time on any particular one of them, but it’s been extremely, extremely fun going

⏹️ ▶️ Casey through old NES games that I loved, going through all Super Nintendo games that I loved. I’ve even been able

⏹️ ▶️ Casey to play with reasonable amounts of speed, Nintendo 64 games that I loved.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey Like, give me Wave Race. I love that piece of garbage game. It was

⏹️ ▶️ Casey my jam, and I’ve been able to play it on this little tiny box that’s about the size

⏹️ ▶️ Casey of a credit card, or maybe 50 credit cards stacked on top of each other. It is incredible, and

⏹️ ▶️ Casey I can even now play Genesis, or for everyone else in the entire friggin’ world, what is it, Master

⏹️ ▶️ Casey, Marco Drive? Master System?

⏹️ ▶️ Casey Mega Drive. Mega Drive, there you go. I can play Genesis games. Like earlier today, I sent you a message in Slack.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey Sonic the Hedgehog, so delightful. I’ve only ever played like a couple hours of it because I never had a

⏹️ ▶️ Casey Genesis. It’s so delightful. And so what I had done was at

⏹️ ▶️ Casey your recommendation, I had gotten an 8BitDo or 8BitDO Bluetooth

⏹️ ▶️ Casey controller. And the particular one I chose, which I think was at your recommendation, Marco, was one that physically resembles

⏹️ ▶️ Casey a Super Nintendo controller, but with two analog sticks. And I

⏹️ ▶️ Casey gotta say, this is where Linux is still Linux. So I get this controller,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey I get this controller and I go and I look at the software that’s doing all this emulation is called

⏹️ ▶️ Casey RetroPie. I install RetroPie on top of Raspbian because I want to

⏹️ ▶️ Casey continue to use this thing as my piehole. That sounds really funny, but be that as

⏹️ ▶️ Casey, Tiff Arment it may,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey I want to continue to use the piehole software on my Raspberry Pi, but I’d

⏹️ ▶️ Casey also like it to be an emulator. Rather than dedicating the Raspberry Pi

⏹️ ▶️ Casey strictly to emulation, I installed all of it on top of the existing OS installation,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey which in years past on Linux was a disaster. This worked out no problem. But I go

⏹️ ▶️ Casey to set up my Bluetooth controller. I’d been using it via USB just fine, no worries. But I decide, no, I want to use

⏹️ ▶️ Casey it via Bluetooth. That’s what it’s there for. So I go

⏹️ ▶️ Casey and I look at the RetroPie documentation, and step one is, okay, go to register and connect Bluetooth

⏹️ ▶️ Casey devices. You can select your Bluetooth devices MAC address from here. What?

⏹️ ▶️ Casey Yeah, sure. They include a screenshot. They include a screen—this is the official documentation, gentlemen.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey They include a screenshot that says, please choose the Bluetooth device you would like to connect to, 66 colon 70 colon 85 colon E2 colon 14 colon 08

⏹️ ▶️ Casey colon. That is their official screenshot.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey That’s what they’re showing you. And then it turns out one of them actually says Nintendo blah, blah, blah on it.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey But it blew my mind as someone who has lived in the sweet, sweet land of—well, generally sweet, sweet

⏹️ ▶️ Casey land of living on Apple devices. I am literally looking at friggin’ MAC

⏹️ ▶️ Casey addresses trying to connect my controller over Bluetooth. It is

⏹️ ▶️ Casey so barbaric, but yet, but yet, it did connect reasonably easily.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey And sure enough, it did show, you know, 8-bit do or 8-bit do, whatever it’s called, blah, blah, blah, blah, on there.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey And so it actually wasn’t as bad as I’m painting it, but it was just so striking and hilarious to me that that was the

⏹️ ▶️ Casey official documentation was to look at a wad of MAC addresses and figure out which one

⏹️ ▶️ Casey was right. Then I was complaining to you, Marco, that the Bluetooth wouldn’t work, it wouldn’t reconnect, and I was asking

⏹️ ▶️ Casey you to show me what settings you were using. It turns out I just needed to update the firmware on my controller and then

⏹️ ▶️ Casey suddenly everything worked out great, which is wonderful and also

⏹️ ▶️ Casey very Linux-y. Again, such a Linux problem to have. But

⏹️ ▶️ Casey I finally got that squared away. Then the only other major problem I had was, I had

⏹️ ▶️ Casey no idea how to leave a game once I entered it. So what I did was I pulled the power on the Raspberry Pi

⏹️ ▶️ Casey for the first few times, because I couldn’t figure out how to leave the game. And you said, no, you go to the in-game menu. What?

⏹️ ▶️ Casey There’s an in-game menu? Yes, you moron. Well, you didn’t say that, but that’s basically what was being said. Yes, you

⏹️ ▶️ Marco moron. I don’t blame you. This is documented almost nowhere. They don’t tell you this anywhere.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco It’s

⏹️ ▶️ Casey so bad. But eventually I realized, okay, well, on this 8BitDo, you know, they have the standard four,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey you know, A, B, X, Y buttons. They have select start, they have D-pad, they have the analog sticks, they have, you know, four shoulder

⏹️ ▶️ Casey buttons. They also have two other buttons that I never set up during the setup process, which in and of itself was

⏹️ ▶️ Casey wonderful because it auto-detected the 8-bit do. It said, okay, do you want to use

⏹️ ▶️ Casey this one? Just hold a button. We’ll start configuring it. Yes. Great. I probably did

⏹️ ▶️ Casey this literally 15 times because I kept hitting the wrong button. It was entirely

⏹️ ▶️ Casey my fault, entirely my fault. It’s very clear what button they want you to hit, but I kept hitting the wrong button and there was no

⏹️ ▶️ Casey clear way to say, oops, and I felt like for those of you who are as old as I am, I felt

⏹️ ▶️ Casey like dialing a rotary phone, you know, where it’s like, you’re trying to dial one, two, three, four, five, six, seven, one, two,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey three, four, now 10 minutes of elapsed doing that five, seven, oh crap, one,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey, Tiff Arment two, three, hang up, try

⏹️ ▶️ Casey, Marco again,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey one, two, three, four, five, eight, one,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey, Tiff Arment two, and eventually I got it right.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey But it was, it was exactly like dialing a rotary phone. It was preposterous. Uh, but eventually I I got in there

⏹️ ▶️ Casey and holy crap, like once you get everything squared away, and this is,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey I feel like Linux is usually good in this regard. Once you get everything

⏹️ ▶️ Casey squared away, it has been working knock on, you know, whatever, what I have nearby,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey it has been working very well. And the, you know, the Nintendo 64 emulation

⏹️ ▶️ Casey is not perfect, but it’s pretty good and everything else is just amazing. And

⏹️ ▶️ Casey I have basically every video game I could ever want from the

⏹️ ▶️ Casey 90s on this device. And it is so cool. And

⏹️ ▶️ Casey it is so amazing. And what’s even cooler is sitting Declan in front of it and saying, Hey

⏹️ ▶️ Casey kid, you know, that Mario Kart game that you love on the switch? Well, let me show you where all that started. And

⏹️ ▶️ Casey the best thing is he’s actually enjoying it, which I don’t think is unique to Declan. Like I’m sure most kids would feel the same way

⏹️ ▶️ Casey that we’re actually allowing him to sit in front of a TV and play video games. But still, the fact that he’s not like,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey Oh, what is this garbage? It’s very, very cool to watch. Also games were hard back then.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey Oh yeah.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey, John Games

⏹️ ▶️ Casey, Tiff Arment were really hard.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey I I’m sorry, Marco. I’ve been talking way too much. I’m just so enthusiastic and excited.

Retro gaming

Chapter Retro gaming image.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey about this, but what is your, because you have, I think, both the same and different retro gaming setup. So

⏹️ ▶️ Casey what, take me through your world if you don’t mind.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco All right. So first of all, I’ve brought on a relevant guest. I can’t talk about gaming

⏹️ ▶️ Marco alone. I’m not qualified enough.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco, Casey Oh, hi Adam.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey Too late. He’s in bed. I kid. I kid. Hey, Tiff.

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment Hey, I wouldn’t let him talk about games without me. I was like, there is no way you’re getting away

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment with this. I am busting myself into that office.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Yeah. Also, like I’m talking about a lot of TIFF games here as well because as you mentioned Casey you know you

⏹️ ▶️ Marco were a Nintendo person you envy the Genesis people I was a Genesis person I am being the Nintendo people

⏹️ ▶️ Marco but who we both really envied were those jerks that had both this jerk right here

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment, Marco big

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment jerk

⏹️ ▶️ Marco at all I we went on this big retro gaming Odyssey it was it was kind of kicked

⏹️ ▶️ Marco off by TIFF’s family they had kept all their old systems.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco And I had my Genesis in the attic somewhere. Tisp’s parents and brother had

⏹️ ▶️ Marco preserved these systems for all these years.

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment GALEN HOOKS Well, they had them all set up. We had them all. At one point, we daisy-chained them all up. Marco

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment, Marco helped us set it

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment up. MARK MANDEL I just

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment, Marco said, I gave you credit. I watched. GALEN HOOKS And brought

⏹️ ▶️ Marco drinks. MARK MANDEL One of my holy grails, which I’ll revisit here in a little while, but one of my holy grails is

⏹️ ▶️ Marco I love not having to switch inputs between multiple systems. And with the old

⏹️ ▶️ Marco way, they would connect to TVs through those RF modulation boxes where you would pick channel three or four

⏹️ ▶️ Marco on the box, and it would just kind of shove the video signal into the antenna

⏹️ ▶️ Marco signal to the back of the TV, because that’s the only input a lot of TVs had back then.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco And you could actually, those little RF modulator things, you could daisy chain those. So you just

⏹️ ▶️ Marco put the output of one into the input of another one. I don’t think I knew that. I mean, none of this is great for video

⏹️ ▶️ Marco quality, but it worked. And so you could connect a whole bunch of systems, all digichained to each other with those

⏹️ ▶️ Marco RF boxes, and just whichever one of them was frontmost in the line that was powered on

⏹️ ▶️ Marco would be shown on channel three.

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment Yeah, so they were all set up in my family’s house, and through some family shuffling and moving around,

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment they got put away and into storage. And just recently, we were home for the holidays,

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment and they’re like, hey, we have all these. Do you want them? Of course, yes we

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment do. And so they gave us all these big bins. the original box to

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment our NES, we have it. It’s amazing, I felt so John Syracuse, like it’s coming down from the attic,

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment this original box. It’s fantastic. We had everything. We even have a Super Scope in there.

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment There was an Atari, everything, piles and piles of cartridges.

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment So they came into our being and they ended up in our house and Marco

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment took it on as a pet project to hook them all up for us.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Now, before we get to using the real systems, I do have, you know,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco comparing it to emulation, there are a bunch of reasons why emulators are better.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco There’s also a few ways in which emulators are worse. You know, first of all, I must

⏹️ ▶️ Marco acknowledge that we are now entering crime committing corner.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Because emulation, usually, the way most people do it, most of the time it’s illegal.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Because usually you’re using a bunch of pirated ROMs, the BIOS from the system is probably pirated

⏹️ ▶️ Marco if it was a system that was modern enough to have a BIOS, etc. So, like, generally speaking,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco the way most people do emulation is not legal, because it involves some degree of software piracy.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco I think the world of emulation is fantastic, for lots of reasons, and it has major advantages

⏹️ ▶️ Marco over playing a real system. So, obviously, it’s way cheaper. Way

⏹️ ▶️ Marco cheaper. Because if you want to actually build up, you know, not only a collection of old systems, but a collection of games

⏹️ ▶️ Marco for those systems, That’s gonna cost you a small fortune. At certain systems more than others, you’d be

⏹️ ▶️ Marco surprised. But anyway, it’s also just simpler. Like, it’s physically simpler. You don’t have all these systems

⏹️ ▶️ Marco and controllers and wires and everything to deal with. Much, much simpler. Much smaller physically, so

⏹️ ▶️ Marco if you don’t want to take up a lot of space or anything, great for that. It’s also a good solution if you have

⏹️ ▶️ Marco a lot of systems you want to emulate. So, if you just want to have, like, your old NES.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco You can get an NES, or you can get your old one out of the attic, it probably still works. And you can plug cartridges in and it’s fine.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco But if you want to have like six different systems, that’s a big setup. Whereas an emulator,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco that’s fine. You mentioned the Raspberry Pi does it. And RetroPie,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco the software that manages this on Raspberry Pis, RetroPie is amazing.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Like it is, I can’t believe how polished it is. Even though things like Bluetooth require

⏹️ ▶️ Marco you to drop into the comical Linux underbelly, for the most part, the center path,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco like the main path of using it, especially if you have a wired controller, is fantastic.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco It is so polished, it’s so easy. The whole OS is designed for you to just stick it on

⏹️ ▶️ Marco an SD card, put that SD card in a Raspberry Pi and boot it up with a game

⏹️ ▶️ Marco controller. You never need a keyboard or mouse for any part of it. You

⏹️ ▶️ Marco can plug it in if you want to, but you don’t have to. You can do the entire setup of the system with a gamepad,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco and it can work with tons of different gamepads. The first one I used before I got

⏹️ ▶️ Marco my 8BitDo, And by the way, the 8BitDo controllers are fantastic. I will get back to those. But

⏹️ ▶️ Marco you can plug in a lot of console controllers. We had a PS3 controller that we weren’t using.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco And so I just plugged the PS3 controller over USB into it and it worked unmodified, out

⏹️ ▶️ Marco of the box, just great. And I used that for the first couple of weeks with it and it was fantastic.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco So emulation, it’s practical, it’s cheap, it’s small,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco it is physically much simpler. It’s also really good for systems where

⏹️ ▶️ Marco using the physical system can be prohibitively expensive to find

⏹️ ▶️ Marco or to get or to keep in working order. I remember, I always joke how when we were growing up,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco you’ve never seen a Neo Geo, no matter what. Everyone knew, it was this legend. Everyone

⏹️ ▶️ Marco knew when they would complain on the playground, well, I have the Genesis, I have the Super Nintendo, mine’s better than yours.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Always some kid was like, well, the Neo Geo’s better. And none of us had ever seen one,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco including that kid.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco, Tiff Arment Somebody would be

⏹️ ▶️ Marco like, well my cousin had one and he was always lying. Wait, Tiff didn’t have an EOGO? I did

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment not have one, I did not have one. Yeah, because

⏹️ ▶️ Marco it was super expensive. The games were like $100 each back then. And

⏹️ ▶️ John they were all just fighting games anyway, and if you’re not interested in that genre, who cares?

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Yeah, they were mostly arcade games, because that’s the kind of company they were. But that was like back when

⏹️ ▶️ Marco cartridges, you know, memory on cartridges was very expensive. And the reason the EOGOs

⏹️ ▶️ Marco were so expensive is that they just used massive amounts of memory. They were like 10 times the memory size

⏹️ ▶️ Marco of like a typical Genesis Super Nintendo game, but the economics didn’t support that, so they were

⏹️ ▶️ Marco just super expensive. But anyway, none of us had ever seen the Neo Geo, and it turns out

⏹️ ▶️ Marco they didn’t sell that many of them. So if you actually wanna buy Neo Geos now, you can. They’re like $800, and the games can

⏹️ ▶️ Marco be hundreds or even in some cases thousands of

⏹️ ▶️ Marco dollars each, because there just aren’t that many of them. So, you know, there’s a lot

⏹️ ▶️ Marco of systems like the Neo Geo, or there are systems that didn’t have enough games

⏹️ ▶️ Marco to really be worth owning, like the 32X. Not enough games that like, if you’re gonna have

⏹️ ▶️ Marco a collection of systems that you’re probably gonna buy one of these systems. Like the more obscure ones, the 3DO, like

⏹️ ▶️ Marco you’re probably gonna wanna use emulation for the more obscure ones, right?

⏹️ ▶️ John One thing about emulation though, talking about the advantages of emulation, disadvantages, we’re in an interesting point

⏹️ ▶️ John in history where, you know, all the advantages you’re talking about emulation are real things, but pretty

⏹️ ▶️ John quickly, if we’re not there already, we’re gonna get into a situation where

⏹️ ▶️ John emulation alone can’t give people the ability to play their childhood games.

⏹️ ▶️ John And I’m thinking about all the kids who grew up playing, for example, the Wii. There’s no emulator that’s

⏹️ ▶️ John gonna let you play the Wii. You need a hardware component. And it’s not just the controller, you

⏹️ ▶️ John need the sensor bar, and now you’re hooking up things to your TV, and now you’ve got wires running and different things. And I’m sure

⏹️ ▶️ John they’ll make, you know, 8BitDo will make your fake Wii sensor bar, but then you get to things like the Kinect,

⏹️ ▶️ John like all right, now this is getting much more difficult. What if your favorite game is a kid of assembly game, you play it on the Kinect?

⏹️ ▶️ John Now I need, you know, the 8BitDo Xbox controller, plus I also

⏹️ ▶️ John need the Kinect thing, and the camera, and the PlayStation Plus motion thing, and like,

⏹️ ▶️ John you know, maybe we’re going back to a realm where that’s not a big issue, because those things seem

⏹️ ▶️ John to have come and gone, but there is always this hardware component, And the hardware component,

⏹️ ▶️ John as it gets more diverse, like this 8BitDo controller is quote unquote great, I think it’s an abomination,

⏹️ ▶️ John but great. Because it has, it’s an SNES

⏹️ ▶️ John controller, it’s also an NES controller, it’s also a PlayStation controller. They just shove everything on one thing,

⏹️ ▶️ John right? But it’s not a Wii controller, and it’s not a, I can’t even remember, what was, Tiff, what was the name of the PlayStation 1?

⏹️ ▶️ John Was it Motion Plus?

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment Oh, I didn’t have a PlayStation 1.

⏹️ ▶️ John No, no, no, the Motion accessory that Sony came out with for the PS3. Anyway, we

⏹️ ▶️ John can’t remember the name, but they had a really good ping pong game. Anyway, if you want to play that, you probably need some kind

⏹️ ▶️ John of wave around one and someone’s going to have to make a wave around one that emulates the Wii remote

⏹️ ▶️ John and the Wii motion plus and also the PlayStation one. It’s going to get more difficult

⏹️ ▶️ John before it gets easier again. So, you know, this is not relevant to our discussion because I’m assuming you’re not emulating

⏹️ ▶️ John Wii bowling on these things. Well, maybe you’ll surprise me and tell me you

⏹️ ▶️ John, Tiff Arment are. We couldn’t get

⏹️ ▶️ John the super scope

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment to work,

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment, John which Yeah, but yeah,

⏹️ ▶️ John hardware accessories, and it’s not just accessories, like, because arguably the Wii, that’s not an accessory, that’s core to the gameplay.

⏹️ ▶️ John But yeah, anyway,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco go on. Yeah. Well, and also, like, the systems are also getting more complicated. I mean, it’s fairly easy.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco You know, one of the disadvantages of emulation is that it isn’t always perfect. Like, you know, sometimes emulators just,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco you know, they can’t emulate or they haven’t yet developed enough to emulate all the edge case behavior of

⏹️ ▶️ Marco the system. And this is, know certain systems are simpler than others. We’re talking about mostly

⏹️ ▶️ Marco you know what I’m focusing on on our setup here is mostly the mainstream cartridge

⏹️ ▶️ Marco based systems of the you know early 90s to mid 90s so it’s like NES, Genesis, SNES,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco N64 like that’s really what I’m talking about here. I’m not going into the CD area the 3D

⏹️ ▶️ Marco area really much at all in part I’ll get to some of the reasons why but in part also because

⏹️ ▶️ Marco a lot of those systems you can’t emulate very very well Some of them are just too complicated

⏹️ ▶️ Marco and the demand is too low like the Sega Saturn is very complicated and I don’t know

⏹️ ▶️ Marco if there’s any good emulators for it. I don’t think there are because it’s just it’s such a complex system and there’s also not a lot

⏹️ ▶️ Marco of demand because the Sega Saturn wasn’t very good. Anyway emulation

⏹️ ▶️ Marco in most cases when you’re doing these super old systems you can usually get good perfect emulation or nearly perfect emulation.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco They’re well understood. You can run them on cheap hardware like a Raspberry Pi which is amazing.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco It’s also nice, you know, again, going back to Crime Committing Corner here, it’s also nice that like

⏹️ ▶️ Marco the complete ROM sets for these systems, ROMs, you know, they’re the dumps of the cartridges, so

⏹️ ▶️ Marco all the game files, because cartridges were so small back then, a game might only be like

⏹️ ▶️ Marco a few hundred kilobytes or a couple of megabytes.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco, Casey And so…

⏹️ ▶️ Casey It’s so preposterous.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey, Marco They’re so

⏹️ ▶️ Marco small. And so you can get like the entire complete ROM set of like every game that was

⏹️ ▶️ Marco ever released for a system, and it might be like a couple of gigs, maybe. We’re not talking about large amounts of space

⏹️ ▶️ Marco here. And so it’s very practical with very low hardware needs with today’s

⏹️ ▶️ Marco hardware to emulate these old systems very, very much.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey Now. Yeah. So like real-time follow-up, The Legend of Zelda ROM, 131 kilobytes. Yeah, exactly. For

⏹️ ▶️ Casey the entirety of the original Zelda game, 131K. Yeah.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Like we’re talking, you know, not large amounts of data here by modern standards.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey I mean, for perspective, I think the peek-a-view icon in its largest size is like 10 times that

⏹️ ▶️ Casey or something like that. It’s ridiculous. Yeah. All right, carry on.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco There are disadvantages of emulation. Again, number one, most of the stuff, the way we’re using it is illegal because

⏹️ ▶️ Marco you’re using pirated copies of games and everything. That’s not great. There are also, you have this

⏹️ ▶️ Marco kind of overabundance problem that leads to a type of paralysis of choice

⏹️ ▶️ Marco for me of like when you have every single game available to you, it’s often a hard

⏹️ ▶️ Marco to know what you want to play. Whereas, like, when we first unpacked these systems, we had

⏹️ ▶️ Marco bins that included the systems and the games that kind of a combined Tiff

⏹️ ▶️ Marco and I had for these systems. You

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment only had the Genesis, stop pretending. Well,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco that

⏹️ ▶️ Marco, Tiff Arment was part of the game. Me too, me too! Yeah.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco But, like, we, you know, you had for each system maybe like 15 games to pick from. And so

⏹️ ▶️ Marco it was a narrow set and it’s like, oh, I want to play that, I want to play that. in a way kind of similar to

⏹️ ▶️ Marco like the appeal of vinyl that I discovered last year, whenever that was two years ago. Even though we have

⏹️ ▶️ Marco these modern libraries of everything in the world that we can call up by voice

⏹️ ▶️ Marco to play any music that was ever made ever, I never know what to ask for. And maybe I only ask for like

⏹️ ▶️ Marco the same three albums, so I can’t think of anything else. Whereas if you have like a library of albums, that

⏹️ ▶️ Marco is providing you with, here’s like 15 to 30 things that you have decided you like already.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco and so it’s easier to pick one to play, right? And the same thing applies for games for me. When

⏹️ ▶️ Marco I’m looking at the giant list of all games that were ever available for a system, I have a hard

⏹️ ▶️ Marco time picking and going for any kind of variety whereas when you have

⏹️ ▶️ Marco a bin full of your old cartridges that you have 15 to choose from, oh, I’ll do that

⏹️ ▶️ Marco one. It’s actually much easier to choose and I end up playing a greater variety of games that way.

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment I think for me too, when we first open up all of those boxes of cartridges, it

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment becomes a, I can hone in very quickly on the games that I loved because those are the ones

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment that you owned, right? And it has this, we’ve had emulators for years, and just like you

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment said, it’s the excitement of rummaging through those cartridges and finding the game you wanted because

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment of the artwork or you knew what system it was for, and so you’re finding it, and it’s

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment so tactile, and it’s real, it’s present, and you’re seeing the artwork. not just scrolling

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment through a list of titles and then taking that cartridge out to the system, sliding it in,

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment pushing it down, hearing the squeak of the spring and that

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment, John satisfying little

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment plastic clang of the closing lid and then pushing the start button and having the music like instantly

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment play. It’s just, it’s all so

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment much more exciting than emulators for me, which I think that But it kind of,

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment when we were setting this up, sorry, Marco was setting this up.

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment, Marco We have a headache.

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment We do. Credit, credit, credit. And it was like

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment this balance of he got into the emulator side of it. But for me, I was like,

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment we’ve done that. We’ve done the emulator stuff. We had that fun, you

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment, Marco know, like we felt like college.

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment We did that in college. And we I loved scrolling through like the list of crazy named games that we never

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment heard of and we would find them and then play them. But it wasn’t the same as pulling out kind

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment of an old favorite and putting it in. Like, there’s this one game for the NES, 1941, and it’s

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment like a plane game and you’re shooting down other planes and some battleships. I’ve never gotten past

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment the second level. And it’s like this, I remember this game vividly.

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment It’s really very hard, but super simple. And Marco found it on the emulator

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment and he found a predecessor to that game? What was 1931? 1943 was the sequel and I was really good at that

⏹️ ▶️ John game. Oh, there it is.

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment There it is. But it just, it wasn’t the same pulling out that game. Like, it was like,

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment oh, that’s cool that you found it. But it wasn’t the, oh, sweet, this is the

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment playing game I played all the time because I knew exactly what the cartridge was like and putting it in.

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment It was just, it was a different level of joy and satisfaction. And I

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment actually liked the restrictions that it brought with it.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Yeah, and like, and you know, there are, there are a lot of like, you know, trade-offs with emulation. Like,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco I think what you mentioned a second ago is super on point. Like, when you plug it in, you put the cartridge

⏹️ ▶️ Marco in, if it’s the Nintendo, you might need to put it in a couple times because they have that

⏹️ ▶️ Marco, Tiff Arment wonderful flaw. And

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment then take it back out and then blow

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment, Marco it in and put

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment it back in and then take it

⏹️ ▶️ Marco back out. Yeah, by the way, blowing on it was always actually like a placebo.

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment You still had to do it. It

⏹️ ▶️ Marco didn’t matter. No, you just had to put it in and out a few times because the cartridge pins would wear out anyway. No, I’m saying- pins

⏹️ ▶️ Marco it was a very flawed design.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco, Tiff Arment It’s like

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment shaking a Polaroid it’s

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment, Marco just like you know you just have to do

⏹️ ▶️ Marco it. Not supposed to do that either. But there is something like when you

⏹️ ▶️ Marco plug in a cartridge and you turn the system on with these old systems the games boot

⏹️ ▶️ Marco instantly there’s no loading screens there’s no interface there’s no menus

⏹️ ▶️ Marco you turn it on and boom you’re the game starts instantly

⏹️ ▶️ Marco, John there’s

⏹️ ▶️ John no OS. They’re all SSDs. Just like the PS5. I hope

⏹️ ▶️ John that’s their goal though. There’s less than one second.

⏹️ ▶️ John, Tiff Arment No,

⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco but they

⏹️ ▶️ John, Tiff Arment did

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment, Marco that when it happened.

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment It was like I was prepared to wait and then like, oh wait, the game’s here. Yeah,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco because in reality like modern modern systems, they have OS’s, they have

⏹️ ▶️ Marco software updates, they have online services, they have user profiles, then the OS gets

⏹️ ▶️ Marco updated, then the game has to get updated, then you have to download additional content. It’s like, there’s so much overhead

⏹️ ▶️ Marco in modern gaming of just going through menus, maintaining the system, maintaining the computer

⏹️ ▶️ Marco that is the modern console with web services and updates and everything. It’s a pain in the butt.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Whereas you plug in 1943 into a Nintendo and you push power on and you’re in the

⏹️ ▶️ Marco game in about a second and a half. It’s so fast and simple, it’s fantastic.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco And there’s no instructions.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco, Tiff Arment Yeah, that’s another thing, yeah, Because back then, games came with manuals,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco and you generally read the manual in the car on the way home from the game store

⏹️ ▶️ Marco or whatever. And so they don’t explain anything about how to play the game in the game.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey If I may interrupt briefly, I asked you to suggest some Genesis games to play,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey and you suggested, I think, Super Bomberman or something like that. And I

⏹️ ▶️ Casey, Marco know

⏹️ ▶️ Casey this is peculiar, whatever the case may be, it was a Bomberman title. And I had only ever played Bomberman

⏹️ ▶️ Casey once at Mike’s bachelor party. I just skipped Bomberman, not deliberately, it just happened.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey It just happened. And so anyway, I tried playing it and I had no fricking clue

⏹️ ▶️ Casey what I was supposed to do because there was no explanation of any kind. It was just, okay,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey you’re there, go. And I really wish I had the manual because I could have read for a little bit and figured it out.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey And I’d also like to just very, since I have the floor just very quickly, something you were saying about the paralysis

⏹️ ▶️ Casey of choice. I have loaded only like 10 to 20 games for each system

⏹️ ▶️ Casey onto my Raspberry Pi. However, what I’ve noticed is I am bouncing

⏹️ ▶️ Casey between them like within seconds, it feels like, you know, I’ll play like

⏹️ ▶️ Casey a stage or a level or a round of one game and be like, okay, yeah, that was fun. Let’s try something else.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey And you know, I haven’t committed for more than like 10 or 20 minutes to any particular game because I have so much

⏹️ ▶️ Casey stuff I can play. Oh, it’s like all these memories flooding back into me. Oh, I’m gonna play a little bit NBA

⏹️ ▶️ Casey Jam. Oh, no, no, no, no, no, no. I’m gonna play F-Zero. Oh, I really wanna play a lot of F-Zero. Okay, I got through that one stage. All

⏹️ ▶️ Casey, Tiff Arment right, Mario Kart time. And

⏹️ ▶️ Casey it’s just like, it’s nonstop. I must look like a crazy person. If somebody was watching me just bounce

⏹️ ▶️ Casey between all these games, it would look like I was bananas.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco That’s how we were too,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco, Tiff Arment for

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment sure. We’re doing the same thing here, but with cartridges, it’s just very noisy. Yeah. Yeah.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Also, like about two thirds of the cartridges don’t work anymore, so there’s also

⏹️ ▶️ Marco, Tiff Arment just like, you know, having to plug in

⏹️ ▶️ Marco and out. All right, does this one work? No. Try the next one. Does this one work? No. But yeah, so

⏹️ ▶️ Marco before we leave, I have a few more things to say about emulators before we go into the main hardware here, but

⏹️ ▶️ Marco emulators, to a large degree, have a lot of these same problems that I’m complaining about with modern

⏹️ ▶️ Marco consoles. They’re modern software platforms. They’re running on computer systems, so you have to install

⏹️ ▶️ Marco software. You have to manage configurations. You have to go through menus, lots of menus, and

⏹️ ▶️ Marco these are inevitably fragile things, especially the way the Linux world works,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco the way I complain about package managers, but software is always changing, especially

⏹️ ▶️ Marco hobbyist stuff like this. And so what works today may not work

⏹️ ▶️ Marco if you try to change something in six months, right? Like I’ve already, so we did all this stuff in January. We set this all

⏹️ ▶️ Marco up. Casey was playing this this past week. So I was trying to tell him how to do certain things. I’ve already forgotten

⏹️ ▶️ Marco how to do almost everything that I set up with the Raspberry Pi that I made three months ago. Like

⏹️ ▶️ Marco it’s very, it’s a computer, you have to configure it. And while it is amazing, especially

⏹️ ▶️ Marco for something that, you know, people are doing this volunteer for free, like it’s amazing how well it works, but it is

⏹️ ▶️ Marco still a computer with a evolving, living software ecosystem that you have to manage. Whereas you

⏹️ ▶️ Marco take your Nintendo out of the attic and you plug it in, and it works the exact same way it did 20 years ago,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco and there’s no changes, you, it just instantly just works, and you don’t have to do anything.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco You don’t have to go through menus, you don’t have to install software, you don’t have to remember, oh, how do, what’s the weird combination of buttons

⏹️ ▶️ Marco that I press to make it go into the menu to change the setting? Like, there’s none of that. It just works,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco and that’s really nice. You just have to remember the Contra code, that’s it. Yeah, right. All

⏹️ ▶️ Marco right, so before we leave emulation totally, I do want to mention the world of legal emulation.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco This is kind of this new-ish, like kind of halfway point between emulation

⏹️ ▶️ Marco and real hardware, where it’s basically legalized emulation in different ways. One of the most common ones

⏹️ ▶️ Marco is retro game sales for new systems, things like the Nintendo Virtual Console,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco where they’ll actually make old games available for new systems, and what those are doing is emulation. Like, they’re

⏹️ ▶️ Marco just packaging up an emulator with their old game, usually making no or minimal changes

⏹️ ▶️ Marco to it. The downside of this is that only a limited number of games are available, because it’s like whatever they

⏹️ ▶️ Marco want to sell you, whatever they have the rights to sell you, a lot of these game companies that made games back in the 90s don’t even

⏹️ ▶️ Marco exist anymore, so there’s nobody around that you could even get the rights from,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco let alone be able to negotiate a deal to make them almost no money

⏹️ ▶️ Marco from whatever conglomerate has absorbed whatever assets were left over from these companies back in the 90s. But the

⏹️ ▶️ Marco way copyright law works, they can’t just give them away without getting permission from something that was only around 20 years ago.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco So there’s very few games for these systems that are actually available

⏹️ ▶️ Marco through these modern resale kind of things. Usually it’s the first party games. The games Nintendo made themselves,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco they can sell you again because they own the rights, but not a lot of other games are available. so it’s not a

⏹️ ▶️ Marco wide catalog.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey Yeah, I was really surprised by that because just in the last month or so, I finally ponied up the 20

⏹️ ▶️ Casey bucks a year, which is really very affordable for the Nintendo Switch Online. And part of

⏹️ ▶️ Casey that is you get, just like you were describing, Marco, you get some Super Nintendo games, some Nintendo games that you

⏹️ ▶️ Casey can play on the Switch. And to your point, it’s emulation. It’s legal emulation, but it’s emulation nonetheless.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey And they definitely have some good games on there. Like they have F-Zero, they have Super Mario Kart. And

⏹️ ▶️ Casey I wouldn’t say that the selection is bad, but it is not terribly robust though.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey Like there’s, I don’t know, maybe 50, 175 games on here. And given

⏹️ ▶️ Casey that there is an unbelievable breadth of games for either one of those systems, probably hundreds

⏹️ ▶️ Casey for either one of those systems, and between the two of them, there’s only 75, I was actually very disappointed

⏹️ ▶️ Casey and I was glad to have some of the ones that I was really looking for. Again, F-Zero, Mario Kart, you know, Super Mario Brothers,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey et cetera. But I was expecting to get way more out of it than I did and

⏹️ ▶️ Casey I was kind of disappointed by that

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Yeah, and also like a lot of times the emulator that they use is not actually very good And

⏹️ ▶️ Marco so you might have issues with the emulation itself It might not be perfect emulation of the original games like it’s just

⏹️ ▶️ Marco it’s a fine solution for some games But it’s a very narrow solution

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Similarly there have been recently though these mini console hardware re-releases

⏹️ ▶️ Marco, Tiff Arment where

⏹️ ▶️ Marco it starts like the NES mini, the SNES mini, the PS1 mini, all the major consoles now have been doing this because

⏹️ ▶️ Marco they can make money. They’re also emulators, just package up in hardware. They’re pretty good values, they’re pretty

⏹️ ▶️ Marco inexpensive, but they have the same problem of like, only some games are on them, because the games just come preloaded.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco They don’t read cartridges, they just have built-in games in their built-in memory and that’s it. They have

⏹️ ▶️ Marco other limitations as well, so it’s not great, and they aren’t widely available.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco They go in these limited releases and everything. so. And then finally before everybody emails me about this,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco there’s this company called Analog that makes these FPGA consoles.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco They’re basically FPGA based emulation. So it’s a whole different type of emulation, a whole different

⏹️ ▶️ Marco degree. It’s very like very accurate emulation. It’s focused on focused primarily on accuracy. They’re

⏹️ ▶️ Marco pretty expensive, like $300-ish each, but they provide very very good

⏹️ ▶️ Marco emulation and they play, they have cartridge slots. They play the original cartridges if you have

⏹️ ▶️ Marco them so you can get all that stuff with those and also they they have lots of Great

⏹️ ▶️ Marco video settings and filters and everything Downside is it’s a lot of money and you still

⏹️ ▶️ Marco need the cartridges you still need the original cartridges to play in them they’re a fun option, but that’s that’s probably

⏹️ ▶️ Marco a better option if you want like the absolute best emulation of one system and Maybe you

⏹️ ▶️ Marco have a flash cart, which I’ll also get to in a

⏹️ ▶️ John moment Are they actually emulating, or are they just reimplementing the actual hardware in their

⏹️ ▶️ John FPGAs? Obviously, there’s a bunch of crap around it for the HDMI output and so on and so forth. But do any of

⏹️ ▶️ John them essentially try to reproduce the NES hardware, like make a single chip version of the entire NES

⏹️ ▶️ John down at the gate

⏹️ ▶️ Marco level? I think that’s what the FPGA thing is about. I don’t know enough to say for

⏹️ ▶️ Marco sure. I think it’s something like that, though. Certainly, that’s the purpose of using FPGAs, is to

⏹️ ▶️ Marco have more accurate implementation of

⏹️ ▶️ John that. It’s an emulator is like you’re running software that is reading the instructions for a CPU that you don’t

⏹️ ▶️ John have and you take those instructions And you you know either translate them to a different instruction set But more

⏹️ ▶️ John likely you say when you see this instruction call this C function in my emulator, you know and so on and so forth, but the actual

⏹️ ▶️ John sort of like hardware cloning is Make a single, you know

⏹️ ▶️ John because if you take all the circuitry in the NES you could put that on a single chip easy because you know The feature

⏹️ ▶️ John size was so huge back then and everything was all separate, right? But in various cases there’s

⏹️ ▶️ John like, you know, things stopping you from doing that, you don’t have, you don’t know the actual circuit layouts of

⏹️ ▶️ John those things, or there’s still something that’s proprietary or you can’t do, but my impression was, at least for the NES ones, that

⏹️ ▶️ John they’re trying to make an actual hardware copy. So if you don’t have your

⏹️ ▶️ John existing NES in your parents’ attic or whatever, but you want the hardware experience and you don’t want to buy

⏹️ ▶️ John one on eBay, this is, I feel like this is what these systems are, the role they’re trying to fill. So my

⏹️ ▶️ John understanding is they’re not actually emulation, but I could be wrong about that. But either way, I think that will be an

⏹️ ▶️ John increasingly important market, like I said, for the Wii and for stuff like that. When these systems

⏹️ ▶️ John go out of fashion and if no one is making new ones again, someone will have to make work-alike

⏹️ ▶️ John hardware in some fashion, and especially if the hardware starts running software, like the Kinect is not just,

⏹️ ▶️ John like it’ll be harder for 8BitDo to make a Kinect clone because that’s a hardware-software

⏹️ ▶️ John thing, right? It’s not as easy to make that as it is to make a controller that just has

⏹️ ▶️ John a bunch of inputs and button presses and stuff like that. So, you know, trying to preserve

⏹️ ▶️ John the legacy of, you know, this kind of art, will this art just disappear? How much of this art

⏹️ ▶️ John has already disappeared? Speaking of games that require a serving component or whatever, we’ll only be able to tell tales

⏹️ ▶️ John about insert massively

⏹️ ▶️ John, Tiff Arment multiplayer online game here that no longer

⏹️ ▶️ John has its servers up. We’ll just be able to tell people about that. Unlike most other arts the human

⏹️ ▶️ John has ever made, is if the painting is preserved, it can last hundreds of years. And of course,

⏹️ ▶️ John books can be infinitely copied and get more or less the same experience. And even movies, we have ways of preserving that more

⏹️ ▶️ John or less. But video games is this whole realm of art that is going to live for a time, but

⏹️ ▶️ John eventually be unable to be experienced by future generations unless we continue

⏹️ ▶️ John to do exactly everything you’ve just described. Make emulators, make these hardware clones,

⏹️ ▶️ John make ways to continue to experience this stuff into the future

⏹️ ▶️ John long after maybe even the companies that made them are gone.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Oh yeah, because like, one of the reasons why I love this era

⏹️ ▶️ Marco of systems so much, this like eight and 16-bit cartridge systems, plus N64, it’s kind of the outlier,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco but like, because it was still a cartridge system. But like, I love this type of system,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco this generation, because it was a lot simpler than a lot of the modern stuff. You know, as you mentioned, like,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco it’s gonna be hard to emulate a lot of the more modern systems for lots of reasons, but generally, They’re just much more complicated.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco These old systems, you know, they have all these advantages. I love this era of games for lots

⏹️ ▶️ Marco of reasons, as I mentioned, like speed. Like one of the very first things, like when we got these

⏹️ ▶️ Marco hooked up and we pressed power on and the game booted instantly, even our son, he commented

⏹️ ▶️ Marco how fast it was that you’re just in the game. He noticed immediately. And he has, you know, a nice, you know, current

⏹️ ▶️ Marco generation iPad mini and he’s played Switch games a lot. Like, he’s very experienced

⏹️ ▶️ Marco with modern games, and yet, he had never seen a game boot

⏹️ ▶️ Marco up that quickly, even on the iPad. Like, just boom, you’re in the game, and he commented on that. And a lot

⏹️ ▶️ Marco of that is also just down to cartridges. Cartridges are great.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Yeah, they were small. Yeah, they couldn’t have like, you know, full-blown CD quality sound with the size they had back then,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco but for the time, and for a good deal of time afterwards, cartridges were the

⏹️ ▶️ Marco superior format to the early discs. I don’t have on this list any

⏹️ ▶️ Marco first-generation disc based systems because they sucked. Like the Sega CD, the

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Saturn, the PlayStation 1, those systems sucked because

⏹️ ▶️ Marco CDs were very slow. You had all these like load times, seek times,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco it was it was not a good time for gaming. Also I would I would argue that

⏹️ ▶️ Marco all the first generation 3D systems with the exception of the N64, the 3D

⏹️ ▶️ Marco sucked on those. Whereas what it was graduating from was really

⏹️ ▶️ Marco well done 2D. Like the 16-bit era of 2D was amazing.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco It was like the pinnacle of this art form of these 2D games. And then when we got

⏹️ ▶️ Marco into 3D, it took a couple generations before it didn’t suck.

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment Yeah, I gotta say, the PS1, it was the first game system I was like, pass, hard pass. I don’t even

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment want it. It doesn’t look appealing at all. I’ll stick with what I have, thanks.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Yeah, the whole industry went 3D, but the 3D sucked. We’re

⏹️ ▶️ John going to get a lot of angry email about the PS1. People love the original PlayStation

⏹️ ▶️ John because of the games. I agree with you about the 3D technology, but there’s a lot of

⏹️ ▶️ John good games for the original

⏹️ ▶️ Marco PlayStation. Well, and this is an area where emulation is actually potentially useful. 3D

⏹️ ▶️ Marco emulators are able to use better

⏹️ ▶️ Marco 3D filtering technology now to actually improve the way the games looked. And,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco you know, so all emulators have offered, like, visual filters. Like, you can play an SNES game and turn

⏹️ ▶️ Marco on, like, a visual filter that will scale up the graphics and soften the

⏹️ ▶️ Marco edges and upscale and blur and everything so it looks kind of like a painter drawing. That’s great.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco I did that all through college. It was wonderful. But what emulators could do to, like, N64 or PS1 games

⏹️ ▶️ Marco was way better because they could actually render the polygons at higher resolution to begin with and do

⏹️ ▶️ Marco texture filtering tricks and things like that. And so these systems that look like hell on the real hardware

⏹️ ▶️ Marco actually look significantly improved in the modern world of emulation of these 3D systems,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco which is again another reason why in my hardware odyssey I didn’t include those CD-based

⏹️ ▶️ Marco systems. I do have an N64 here, that’s a TIFF N64, but we’ll get to that in a

⏹️ ▶️ Casey little bit. And just really quickly in the defense of the PlayStation, like I am definitely looking with rose-colored glasses

⏹️ ▶️ Casey because I haven’t played an original PlayStation in what, 20, 25 years, whatever it’s been now. But I remember,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey you know, the load times were awful. And in that sense, it was, it was atrocious. But some of those games,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey I think, John, you had said this a second ago, like some of those games were amazing. Like that was the first exposure I had to Gran Turismo, which was

⏹️ ▶️ Casey amazing. Even though it wasn’t as fun as everyone thought it was, it was still an amazing and technical achievement.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey That was the first time I’d played any Metal Gear games, like Metal Gear solid still to this day kind of blows my mind

⏹️ ▶️ Casey and maybe there were other ones that were better or different before that but that was my first exposure to it and there were other

⏹️ ▶️ Casey games I can’t remember off the top of my head but I remember that being a very solid system in terms

⏹️ ▶️ Casey of the games that were on it. I don’t debate that it was you know nothing but waiting for everything, I don’t debate

⏹️ ▶️ Casey that it could have been way way better but I don’t think it’s it was quite as terrible as the

⏹️ ▶️ Casey armaments are perhaps painting it at the moment but yeah I certainly

⏹️ ▶️ Casey did miss you know, having come off a Nintendo 64, I absolutely missed the instant load times

⏹️ ▶️ Casey of cartridge consoles.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Oh, yeah. And like, and there were lots of reasons why those are better left to emulators, like, the other CD systems,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco I mean. Like, you know, for one thing, all these, the old cartridge systems have no moving

⏹️ ▶️ Marco parts, with the exception of the NES’s stupid cartridge pop-up-and-down thing, which breaks all the time, but otherwise,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco like, there’s no optical drives, there’s no CD lenses, there’s no motors, there’s no fans, even. They

⏹️ ▶️ Marco operate in silence, they’re all like low temperature devices. Most of them don’t

⏹️ ▶️ Marco even have heat sinks on the processors. They’re just very basic devices, they’re

⏹️ ▶️ Marco like low complexity, and they don’t have moving parts. And so, they’re

⏹️ ▶️ Marco optimized really for longevity and simplicity. The only system that we powered

⏹️ ▶️ Marco on that worked last time we used it, but didn’t work now, was

⏹️ ▶️ Marco the Xbox 360. 360. Got the red ring of death.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco, Tiff Arment Like, and

⏹️ ▶️ Marco to

⏹️ ▶️ Marco, Tiff Arment be

⏹️ ▶️ Marco fair, it

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment, Marco took

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment this long to red ring. I’m pretty

⏹️ ▶️ Marco proud of it. Yeah. But it’s been off for like four, five years at least. Like, yeah. So anyway, that’s the one thing that

⏹️ ▶️ Marco didn’t come back from the dead. Uh, the, the Atari, we couldn’t get to work the Atari 2,600, but I, we

⏹️ ▶️ Marco don’t know if it was working before. Um, so,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco, Tiff Arment but otherwise,

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment okay. In my heart.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Yeah. But everything else worked. And I think in part that was because

⏹️ ▶️ Marco these are all like super simple, cartridge-based systems with no moving parts. One other advantage

⏹️ ▶️ Marco before I move on from this is that these old ones back, the simpler ones,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco the controllers were much simpler.

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment Yes, I wanted to talk about

⏹️ ▶️ Marco this. The one system we have a bit of a problem with the controllers for is the N64, because it’s been sitting

⏹️ ▶️ Marco in an attic and everything, and they were worn to begin with, and so the analog sticks are all kind of rough on all the N64 controllers.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco They’re not in great working order. If you get a system that was before analog sticks,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco there’s a lot less about the controller that can wear out. And so again, like you’re optimizing for longevity

⏹️ ▶️ Marco by going with these older systems if you want hardware, if you want like to be actual playing on the

⏹️ ▶️ Marco original hardware, 16-bit and 8-bit and maybe N64, you’re generally better off.

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment Oh, and they just feel so good in your hands. Like they are so tiny. It’s almost like the

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment old original iPhone. Like when you get hold of an old iPhone, you’re just like, oh, you just

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment like feel really good. Like where

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment, John were you? And

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment that’s what those, you know, the little NES rectangles feel that way, the SNES ones, because they’re

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment just a slight modification. But just the simplicity of having a few buttons

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment to control everything that you need to do is wonderful. It makes you

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment be able to play these insanely oddly hard games very easily. And let

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment me say, I don’t miss a rumble pack. I didn’t think for two seconds, oh, my controller’s

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment not rumbling. Why is this? odd. Like not at all. I wasn’t bothered by

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment the cord into the system because actually their cords were pretty long.

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment I got to say, they thought that out. They had very long cables from the controllers to the systems,

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment which I appreciated that, but we got them all tangled up, right,

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment, Marco Marco?

⏹️ ▶️ Marco The N64 ones are

⏹️ ▶️ Marco, Tiff Arment real

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment bad. They’re all over the place. But yeah, the controllers themselves felt way better in your hand.

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment And I’m comparing this again to the emulators where they

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment always felt like there was some sort of a slightly something off about the interface like interacting

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment with these games without their actual intended controllers. Like there’s

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment just when you’re used to playing them, like when you’re used to playing these games as they were with these controllers

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment to interact with them and then going to an emulator and just and having a generic controller for that

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment it was it’s it’s a different feeling. It’s like, oh yes, I’m playing this game and I’m getting the joy of playing

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment this game. That’s all there, right? But man, there is a whole nother level.

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment It’s like your smile just brightens that extra little bit because you’re actually holding the right thing in your

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment hand and those red buttons are staring back at you and you’re like, yes, I get you. There’s only

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment one D-pad. Thanks. Thanks for that.

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment, John So, so nice.

⏹️ ▶️ John It’s because those emulator controllers, like I said, are an abomination. Yeah, that’s I feel like that’s part of I mean, make fun of,

⏹️ ▶️ John you know, Marco’s weird vinyl whatever emulation thing with the cards to the music. But

⏹️ ▶️ John honestly, we’ve said this before, when you’re playing a game, your experience is yes sight and sound, but also

⏹️ ▶️ John touch. Like that is your interface to the game is the thing you’re holding in your hand. You’re like, Oh, I want that experience of

⏹️ ▶️ John playing this old game. That controller is a huge part of the experience. And yeah, you can get a,

⏹️ ▶️ John you know, some mongrel monster controller that tries to have all the

⏹️ ▶️ John things that you need for seven of these systems, but it will never feel like playing the actual system did

⏹️ ▶️ John on those controllers, even though some of them may be ergonomic nightmare is presumably you’re not playing these for too long.

⏹️ ▶️ John And speaking of chord length, by the way,

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment You can’t, you can’t survive that long. You die. They’re too difficult

⏹️ ▶️ John to play. You gotta get those skills back. The NES in Japan, the Famicom system,

⏹️ ▶️ John had extremely short chords on it. And they were, if I remember serves, not, you couldn’t like

⏹️ ▶️ John disconnect them to put in a bigger chord. Like they were attached permanently at one end. And they were very

⏹️ ▶️ John short. I forget how long they are, but like my memory is like that they were like three feet long, like they would never work in

⏹️ ▶️ John an American. I like they basically force the children to sit where your parents would yell at you for sitting like right.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco So suppose you want to game on your original hardware, you get out your old system

⏹️ ▶️ Marco in the attic. It probably still works. The games might work. They might not you might

⏹️ ▶️ Marco need to clean the cartridge contacts or clean the cartridge slots in the system. They might have corrosion, you know, but otherwise

⏹️ ▶️ Marco like you there’s your old system probably still works controllers are like one of of the very first things you

⏹️ ▶️ Marco go to, right? And everything you have just said, you and Tiff, John, everything you’ve said is correct.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Like, there’s so much about the feel and the nostalgia of the system.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Part of the reason why you’re playing on original hardware, if you’ve gotten to this segment, is

⏹️ ▶️ Marco that you want that nostalgia. And while I do love some of the aftermarket controllers,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco for other reasons, for nostalgia, you can’t beat the original ones, especially for the NES.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Like, the Super Nintendo and Genesis that have pretty good third-party controllers. Now, the NES

⏹️ ▶️ Marco doesn’t. Like, nobody makes a perfect NES controller clone. And so the NES, I feel

⏹️ ▶️ Marco like you really need that original one. But one big difference is that cord length. And, you know, these systems

⏹️ ▶️ Marco were all made in the era where we had CRT TVs. You were lucky

⏹️ ▶️ Marco if you had like a 27-inch TV. Like, they weren’t very big. And you weren’t sitting very

⏹️ ▶️ Marco far away from them. And this was before wireless things were really prevalent. you had to have

⏹️ ▶️ Marco a wire to the system, but they didn’t make them that long because you weren’t sitting

⏹️ ▶️ Marco that far from a 27-inch TV. Now, one of the challenges of running these

⏹️ ▶️ Marco on a modern TV is you’re generally having much larger TVs now, and you’re sitting further away from them than we did back then,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco and the cords are all too short.

⏹️ ▶️ John The Famicom controller, by the way, was two feet long.

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment Oh my

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment, John word.

⏹️ ▶️ John Would that even reach from some people’s entertainment centers to the floor? My phone charging cable is

⏹️ ▶️ John longer than that. Casey’s TV that’s on top of his mantle. It will just dangle. Casey would have to stand

⏹️ ▶️ John in front of his mantle.

⏹️ ▶️ John, Casey On a stool.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Yeah, so like one of the technological advances that I have moved to for some of these systems

⏹️ ▶️ Marco is that company 8BitDo, which people in the chat are saying it’s pronounced 8BitDo because it rhymes with Nintendo, which

⏹️ ▶️ Marco I guess makes some sense. Anyway, 8BitDo or Do, they make a bunch of controllers

⏹️ ▶️ Marco for old systems, including they have versions of a lot of these controllers that have

⏹️ ▶️ Marco little receivers that are wireless that plug into a Genesis or Super Nintendo and we have

⏹️ ▶️ Marco these so I actually bought a pair of each of those I have their version of the Genesis six-button controller

⏹️ ▶️ Marco I have two of those each of them has a little receiver that plugs into the Genesis and is powered by the

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Genesis and so you have two wireless controllers that are always there and the controllers occasionally

⏹️ ▶️ Marco needs to be charged by micro USB but very occasionally and you have a wireless Genesis and

⏹️ ▶️ Marco same thing I have the same setup with Super Nintendo. It’s wonderful. It’s not as

⏹️ ▶️ Marco nostalgic as the NES controller where it’s, you know, long wire, but for like a clean

⏹️ ▶️ Marco modern setup that you don’t have to worry about being, you know, too close to the TV or pulling

⏹️ ▶️ Marco the console accidentally by the cable, like, it’s actually really, really nice. So that is

⏹️ ▶️ Marco one area where if you want to play an original hardware but you want a nice modern-day

⏹️ ▶️ Marco amenity of of wireless controllers, you can do that with these, you know, 8BitDo and other companies, but I think 8BitDo’s

⏹️ ▶️ Marco the best one. They make fantastic wireless controllers that will plug into the old

⏹️ ▶️ Marco consoles. Anyway, they’re not quite as nostalgic, but they’re

⏹️ ▶️ John very good. One thing you’re missing out on, though, I’m sure you’re gonna get to this when you start talking about video, but part

⏹️ ▶️ John of the retro gaming experience is the wired controllers and an

⏹️ ▶️ John RF interface to a CRT, mostly because the input lag in that system is

⏹️ ▶️ John so insanely short compared to any modern system. Any modern system that, forget about wireless,

⏹️ ▶️ John which is gonna add huge delay, relatively speaking, but any modern system that goes through an HDMI converter that

⏹️ ▶️ John goes into your TV that has like 10 to 100 milliseconds of input lag just on the display

⏹️ ▶️ John device before you’re even considering that stuff, and then you add a wireless controller, and if you’re dying in two seconds

⏹️ ▶️ John anyway because your old and your reflexes suck now, you can’t memorize the levels anymore, fine. But I feel

⏹️ ▶️ John like if you were gonna go to these lengths, and this is what, you know, the really hardcore people do,

⏹️ ▶️ John you need a CRT that’s hooked up with RF to your thing with a wired

⏹️ ▶️ John controller. I will get there.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco I will get there, especially if you want like light guns to work and everything, yeah, trust me, I’ll get there. But anyway, before

⏹️ ▶️ Marco we get too much into the video output section, which is significant, if you’re gonna

⏹️ ▶️ Marco be retro gaming on old hardware, we have to briefly revisit crime committing

⏹️ ▶️ Marco corner.

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment I feel like you are a person who’s presenting like a 1950s school video. Hi.

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment If you would like this new modern technology in your life, follow these simple

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment, Marco steps.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco No, we are revisiting Crime Committing Corner to talk about flash cartridges,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco also known as Everdrives because these are the, that’s the like the brand of the most popular one. A flash

⏹️ ▶️ Marco cartridge is a cartridge that goes into an old game system that has an SD card

⏹️ ▶️ Marco slot on it. And you can load it up with ROMs for emulators and put it

⏹️ ▶️ Marco on the SD card slot and then it shows a menu when you boot it up and you can just pick from

⏹️ ▶️ Marco the ROMs and you can play any ROM file on original hardware. It’s kind

⏹️ ▶️ Marco of a kind of a hybrid between the world of emulators and the world of original hardware. It

⏹️ ▶️ Marco has some of the advantages of each world, most of the advantages of the original hardware,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco but it opens you up to like you know one of the things about emulators is that you can play games that weren’t

⏹️ ▶️ Marco actually released for the system. You can play things like ROM hacks, where fans have

⏹️ ▶️ Marco altered old games to add levels or fix things or improve things, whatever.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco You can play homebrew games. Some hobbyists—granted not a lot—but some hobbyists are actually

⏹️ ▶️ Marco writing original Genesis or Super Nintendo games today. It’s a fun little

⏹️ ▶️ Marco world, and

⏹️ ▶️ Marco, Tiff Arment if you have—

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment a few of those they’re naughty. Yeah. Yeah. Oh yeah. But if you have don’t test

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment them in front of your kids.

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment, Marco Yeah.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Yeah. Like so if you have either an emulator set up or if you have a flash cart you can play

⏹️ ▶️ Marco that type of game. It’s also nice like a lot of these games as I mentioned are

⏹️ ▶️ Marco pretty rare and hard to find or very very expensive if you do like find one on eBay or something

⏹️ ▶️ Marco because they’re rare or they were unreleased or whatever. And so this opens you up to be able to play games

⏹️ ▶️ Marco like that that you either can’t get at all or that are kind of prohibitively expensive to get. It also,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco it saves wear and tear on the cartridge slots. On some systems this might not be an issue. I would

⏹️ ▶️ Marco strongly advise this is very recommendable on an NES because again it

⏹️ ▶️ Marco has that flawed cartridge slot design where the pins wear out and there are various ways you can like you know

⏹️ ▶️ Marco you can get certain aftermarket things to try to fix that but one of the one of the easiest ways to fix that is to use

⏹️ ▶️ Marco a flash cartridge instead of using real cartridges and then not only do you have all the games

⏹️ ▶️ Marco but you also then don’t have to constantly be like putting the cartridge slot up and down

⏹️ ▶️ Marco up and up and down and wearing out those pins even more. I also recommend if you’re gonna be in this world

⏹️ ▶️ Marco again we’re in crime committing corner I’m sorry if this offends you just skip forward 30 seconds trust

⏹️ ▶️ Marco me look for things called EverDrive packs these are complete ROM sets

⏹️ ▶️ Marco but they are well organized they are also editorially categorized so like you’ll

⏹️ ▶️ Marco have the A to Z folder, and then you’ll have subfolders of

⏹️ ▶️ Marco genre categorizations. You go, here’s all the action games, here’s all the shooters. Then you can have subfolders

⏹️ ▶️ Marco that are like, editorially picked subsets, like the best shooters, the games that define

⏹️ ▶️ Marco the system, the best platformers. It’s awesome, it’s a great way to improve

⏹️ ▶️ Marco on that kind of paralysis of choice that you get with just having massive amounts of emulator ROMs,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco and just makes these things a lot more useful and easy. And it lets you discover good games instead

⏹️ ▶️ Marco of having to just go through the list of 500 and just pick randomly. So trust me, you want EverDrive packs.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Search for those, you’ll find them. Anyway, disadvantages of flash carts are, number one, they are

⏹️ ▶️ Marco illegal. Like the same way emulators are. You’re talking about pirating software here, pirating these old games. It’s up to you whether that bothers

⏹️ ▶️ Marco you or not. I think systems this old, you’re not really harming anybody, because again, it’s like, it’s

⏹️ ▶️ Marco hard to even find anybody who would even have the rights to this and to arrange any kind of payment. it’s

⏹️ ▶️ Marco pretty much impossible. Other disadvantages are these flash carts are actually pretty expensive,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco especially like the N64 one is fairly expensive. You’re looking at like up to $200 for some of them.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco They also, you know, they introduced that similar paralysis of choice that emulators have, and it

⏹️ ▶️ Marco definitely loses some of the nostalgia value when you’re not inserting them in real cartridges. So there are some disadvantages.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco I find that having a flash cart on the real system is a really

⏹️ ▶️ Marco good balance of modern convenience and having all those games available to you

⏹️ ▶️ Marco while also having the nostalgia of playing the original hardware. But it’s up to you where you might draw that

⏹️ ▶️ Marco line.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey This is very impressive, this whole EverDrive thing. So there’s an SD card, you said, on each of these,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey and you would just pop that out, put a ROM on, and then pop that back in, and you’re good to go?

⏹️ ▶️ Marco You pop it out, you put on the EverDrive pack of all the ROMs in the world, and you never touch it again.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey, Marco Ah, fair enough, okay. I was gonna

⏹️ ▶️ Casey say, because you’re still popping this in and out, but of course, I didn’t even consider that. You would just put everything

⏹️ ▶️ Casey on there and just have to scroll through a list of a billion games.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Yeah, and like, I mean, the technical accomplishment here is incredible, like to make these kind of things,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco and they show menus and everything, and it’s just, it’s a wonderful hobbyist world,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco and you kind of can’t believe somebody took the time to do all this, but you’re so glad they did. Like, it’s so amazing.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco And yeah, it is legally iffy, and it does introduce some of the downfalls

⏹️ ▶️ Marco of emulators, But some of the Genesis ones can actually do

⏹️ ▶️ Marco save state and load state on the real hardware, which is something that you would think normally

⏹️ ▶️ Marco only emulators could do that, but no, they can actually do it on some systems. You can do it with the cartridge.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco It’s incredible what these things can accomplish. It really is quite something. But anyway, now

⏹️ ▶️ Marco comes the big question and the big downside, video output. Now, most of these old

⏹️ ▶️ Marco systems, they natively were rendering 240p. Old analog CRT

⏹️ ▶️ Marco TVs, if you ignore the tiny subset of HD CRTs, which I actually had

⏹️ ▶️ Marco one, it was, don’t go there. Anyway, if you

⏹️ ▶️ Marco just consider CRTs to be the old standard deaf ones, the US ones would take in roughly

⏹️ ▶️ Marco 480i. And by the way, if listeners out there, if you don’t know how

⏹️ ▶️ Marco analog TV signals work, it’s actually fascinating. Look it up on YouTube. There’s some great

⏹️ ▶️ Marco videos on it. I like the Technology Connections guy. He does a lot of videos on this kind of stuff.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco The way analog and CRT TV signals worked is fascinating. So these systems render

⏹️ ▶️ Marco 240p internally. Eventually, like as you got more advanced, like the Xbox would render like

⏹️ ▶️ Marco 480p eventually. Like you get more advanced systems that rendered higher resolution. But for the most part,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco you’re dealing with 240p being rendered on a 480i screen. The way

⏹️ ▶️ Marco you would usually connect these systems, the way most of us did, as mentioned earlier, those RF modulators, those channel three,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco channel four, black boxes that would plug into the coax cable slot in the back of the TV, and you’d plug the VCR, or whatever, back

⏹️ ▶️ Marco into the back of that. This is the way most people use their consoles. Generally, these are the worst video quality,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco but they have advantages. They’re simple, they’re easy to data chain. Most TVs back then didn’t

⏹️ ▶️ Marco have any other inputs. It wasn’t until the 90s, late 90s at least, that you’d have a TV

⏹️ ▶️ Marco that might have a composite input or something like that, or maybe, maybe later on component, that came much, much later.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco I’m trying to run these on a LCD 40-something inch

⏹️ ▶️ Marco TV that we bought probably seven or eight years ago. Just some like weird Panasonic LCD thing. It’s not like a high-end

⏹️ ▶️ Marco TV, and it’s not super new, but also not super old. I could not get RF modulation

⏹️ ▶️ Marco to work on this TV. I suspect maybe it lacks the old analog tuner

⏹️ ▶️ Marco circuitry. Anyway, I couldn’t get RF to work, which is good, because it sucks anyway. But I did want something that I could

⏹️ ▶️ Marco like daisy chain in all the systems if possible, So that didn’t end up working. The next step up from

⏹️ ▶️ Marco RF modulation in old analog video is the composite video plug. This is that ubiquitous,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco circular, usually yellow color coded plug. It’s a circle with a

⏹️ ▶️ Marco stick in the middle. So it’s like two conductors. It’s called an RCA plug. That’s dial-off plug. The red

⏹️ ▶️ Marco and white ones are always audio, stereo audio. Like the yellow is composite video. Those are all RCA plugs anyway.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco So composite, this is one signal. It’s a ground and one video signal.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco It squishes together into that one signal all of the color and brightness info and all the

⏹️ ▶️ Marco sync info to make that analog video signal work. All of these game systems, all

⏹️ ▶️ Marco these old systems can output composite easily. Most of them have a port on the side or

⏹️ ▶️ Marco like a cable that either comes with it or is easily available, can output composite video. So this is probably the

⏹️ ▶️ Marco best option. The problem is composite video looks like crap on modern TVs. Like it

⏹️ ▶️ Marco looks like total garbage. The main thing is when you have only that one wire

⏹️ ▶️ Marco blending everything together, all the signals together, you only have a certain amount of bandwidth where the TV’s

⏹️ ▶️ Marco able to distinguish, like, okay, can I just distinguish this color one pixel

⏹️ ▶️ Marco away from this color and have them not bleed into each other or anything like that? Like there’s issues like

⏹️ ▶️ Marco that with composite where it looks like crap on modern TVs.

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment Is this looking like crap, your version of looking like crap, or the Publix

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment, Marco version of looking like crap? Well,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco it’s like, you know, the colors bleed into each other. The edges are blurry. You might have like

⏹️ ▶️ Marco incorrect coloration on certain edges or certain patterns. You might have interference

⏹️ ▶️ Marco patterns where you have like dots that actually don’t belong where they’re being rendered because it’s just like analog interference.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco There’s all sorts of weird stuff. And then also, there’s a whole bunch of issues when outputting to modern TVs, which I’ll

⏹️ ▶️ Marco get to in a moment. Composite tends to exacerbate a lot of these issues. It makes it especially

⏹️ ▶️ Marco hard to see stuff in dark scenes, and certain colors, like on our TV, red

⏹️ ▶️ Marco is oftentimes butchered, and it’s like when playing Tetris on the NES,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco one of the levels, somewhere in the seven or eight range, one of them, it turns red and black, and it’s

⏹️ ▶️ Marco so hard to see certain pieces on that level, no matter what your brightness is turned on the TV,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco the signal’s just getting crushed. Anyway, moving up from composite quickly, there was a brief window

⏹️ ▶️ Marco of time where the world tried to use S-Video. S-Video is that little black multi-pin plug that’s

⏹️ ▶️ Marco kind of like a keyboard plug, but it’s black. I remember that. S-Video separates the color signal

⏹️ ▶️ Marco from the brightness signal. So you’re going from one signal line to two. This is

⏹️ ▶️ Marco a huge improvement. All the colors are still combined into like, you know, there’s brightness and there’s color. So all the

⏹️ ▶️ Marco colors are still combined into one and they just like modulate, you know, differently to distinguish them.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco But it’s significantly better than composite. It’s almost as good as you can get. But the problem with S-Video is that almost

⏹️ ▶️ Marco none of these consoles supported it, and almost no TVs have S-Video inputs anymore. Later on, we had Component

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Video. This is those green, blue, and red RCA plugs.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco The Xbox, the first Xbox, had an option for this. This came along later. It supported HD

⏹️ ▶️ Marco resolutions. Component achieves great quality because it separates the three colors from each other.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco So you have separate signal paths, there’s no interference between them, you can get like tack sharp,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco you know, pixels next to each other. They don’t bleed into each other. There’s no blurriness. It’s awesome.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco And so what these old consoles could do, since component came along later and wasn’t around, the

⏹️ ▶️ Marco older consoles could use an older standard in some cases of RGB video, usually

⏹️ ▶️ Marco using the European SCART connector. I, like most Americans, had never seen one of

⏹️ ▶️ Marco these, but Europeans will possibly remember this giant rectangular

⏹️ ▶️ Marco connector with these vertical pins in it like it looked almost like a big printer cable

⏹️ ▶️ Marco with a diagonal like connector coming out the side for the wire it’s very it’s a very strange looking connector

⏹️ ▶️ Marco it is and again as an American I’ve never seen one but apparently they were fairly

⏹️ ▶️ Marco standard in Europe. The SCART connector supports RGB video similar to

⏹️ ▶️ Marco component in that it separates the three color signals onto their own signal lines.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco So when you’re dealing with these old systems, RGB is usually the best you can get. It’s the best quality that you can get

⏹️ ▶️ Marco out of like a Genesis, um, a super Nintendo. The NES

⏹️ ▶️ Marco has to be modded to output this, but it can and you can like find people who mod them for

⏹️ ▶️ Marco you on eBay and stuff, or you can buy pre modded systems if you want to go that route. Um, it’s not the cheapest

⏹️ ▶️ Marco thing in the world to go that route, but you can. And of course that’s what I did. And let me tell you,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Using RGB output on these consoles looks incredible. It

⏹️ ▶️ Marco is tack sharp. It looks as good as the best emulators, but

⏹️ ▶️ Marco on real hardware on your TV. Now, how you get the video

⏹️ ▶️ Marco signal onto your TV, that’s a whole different thing too. As John mentioned, these games were

⏹️ ▶️ Marco all designed for CRTs. If you can have a CRT for this setup,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco and you can get a good one that will work doesn’t have problems and you have space for it,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco just do that. It’s way cheaper than what I’m about to recommend, way simpler, and in many ways

⏹️ ▶️ Marco better. You know, it’s more nostalgic, it’s more authentic. The games were designed, the graphics

⏹️ ▶️ Marco were designed for CRTs. CRTs render things in a certain way, they have certain artifacts.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco These games were designed for that. And so in some ways games look worse when they’re not

⏹️ ▶️ Marco shown on CRTs because they’re being shown in a way they weren’t designed for. If you can get a good CRT, you probably don’t to

⏹️ ▶️ Marco pay much for it. You can probably find one for free or for very cheap because people are always dumping them because they don’t want them. The problem

⏹️ ▶️ Marco is that you know if you have a CRT you’re probably not gonna want to use it for anything else

⏹️ ▶️ Marco these days. Like you’re not gonna want to like watch your HD movies on your CRT. So like

⏹️ ▶️ Marco you really need like a dedicated retro gaming space that you can have your CRT

⏹️ ▶️ Marco set up if you’re gonna go that route. We didn’t want to do that. I don’t want to do that. So we didn’t?

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Well maybe maybe we’ll graduate to that at some point, but setting up a giant, first of all, we don’t have a

⏹️ ▶️ Marco CRT, we’d have to find one.

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment That shouldn’t be too hard. I think there’s one across the street right now on the curb.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Yeah, but also like you gotta find one that’s like still in good working order. You know, it’s

⏹️ ▶️ Marco non-trivial and they’re really big and heavy and anyway, so.

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment Is it gonna be more difficult than like ordering parts from Japan and all kinds of

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment crazy things that you’ve been doing in that room?

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Well, yeah, so. Just putting it out

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment there, just putting it out there. It would be a lot cheaper. So I’m here for the insight into the behind the scenes world

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment of

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment, John this whole discussion.

⏹️ ▶️ John Yeah. I endorse the CRT plan. They’re not that big. You can get a small, like, atom-sized one. This setup

⏹️ ▶️ John deserves to have a CRT.

⏹️ ▶️ John, Tiff Arment It’s better on CRT. It does. Maybe.

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment Listen to John. Everyone loves Syracuse, so they think he’s right. Listen to him.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Yeah, I don’t know. We’ll see. But anyway, and certainly for things like input lag, again, I strongly

⏹️ ▶️ Marco advise, if you’re nerdy enough to listen to this show, watch these videos on how analog video signals work. It’s

⏹️ ▶️ Marco fascinating. And even just, and how these systems rendered their video. Because keep in mind, these systems,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco they were rendering a 240p image. None of them had enough memory to keep a

⏹️ ▶️ Marco 240p image in memory themselves. They weren’t rendering it to a frame buffer and then having some chip

⏹️ ▶️ Marco output that to the TV. They were rendering it line by line manually. Every single

⏹️ ▶️ Marco line that was rendered, the system would take most of its time rendering each pixel.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco And then in the very, very short interval when they were waiting for the scanning electron gun to

⏹️ ▶️ Marco change lines, that’s when they would do the game computation. It’s fascinating how these things

⏹️ ▶️ Marco worked. Anyway, look that up. It’s a wonderful thing. I’ll try to link to some videos if I can remember. So anyway,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco CRTs though make games look right. There are filters

⏹️ ▶️ Marco you can use on emulators and other solutions that I’ll get to in a moment to try

⏹️ ▶️ Marco to emulate the look of CRTs on modern LCD or whatever

⏹️ ▶️ Marco TVs. There’s a few elements to this. One of them that’s been getting around recently

⏹️ ▶️ Marco is there are these like pixel shaders that will actually warp the entire image

⏹️ ▶️ Marco to mimic screen curvature. Because CRTs were not flat, even the flat fronted ones, behind

⏹️ ▶️ Marco them was a curved surface of the glass. Like just the front surface was flat, the back surface was curved.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco So there are these filters that will kind of like fake the curvature of the glass.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco I don’t like that. I think it looks too fake and And it doesn’t, yeah, I don’t love that at all.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco CRTs also, they didn’t render pixels in a very sharp, precise way. They didn’t

⏹️ ▶️ Marco even technically really have 480 pixels across. It didn’t work that way. So

⏹️ ▶️ Marco when you look at images rendered on a CRT, they don’t have sharp edges around each pixel. They’re blurred.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco And so there are emulators and things that you can actually apply a blur filter. Kind of just a gentle

⏹️ ▶️ Marco blur over the whole screen. To me, when I do that, it looks better. it

⏹️ ▶️ Marco looks more correct for the way these games looked. More advanced emulator shaders might

⏹️ ▶️ Marco also take advantage of the fact that when CRTs would render colors, bright colors

⏹️ ▶️ Marco like white would actually bleed slightly into the surrounding pixels,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco more so than the way that a darker red might render. So

⏹️ ▶️ Marco certain colors would actually blur around themselves more than others. There is some effort out there

⏹️ ▶️ Marco now to actually replicate that behavior in pixel shaders, which is really cool for emulators. Now,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco the last thing I’ll talk about in this area is scan lines. Again, if you look at a CRT

⏹️ ▶️ Marco up close, there are slight black gaps between the lines, especially of the TV.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Again, the way the horizontal and vertical rendering worked is different. Most of the time, this is

⏹️ ▶️ Marco visible as like slightly dark gaps horizontally between the lines.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco So you have like a very thin hairline black line horizontally between each line of pixels.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco emulators and stuff don’t do this and modern TVs don’t have this but there are filters

⏹️ ▶️ Marco that you can apply even on the Raspberry Pi and there’s actually a couple of hardware solutions to do this

⏹️ ▶️ Marco on your TV to add blank black lines between the

⏹️ ▶️ Marco pixel lines to emulate the look of CRT scan lines. I thought that’s crazy

⏹️ ▶️ Marco like that why would anybody want to do this then I did it and I played a game and I instantly

⏹️ ▶️ Marco fell in love with this effect it sounds crazy that you would artificially add

⏹️ ▶️ Marco thin black lines between all the bigger, chunkier pixel lines that

⏹️ ▶️ Marco are being rendered. But to me, it makes these old games look right. That

⏹️ ▶️ Marco was the thing that popped in my head, and I even yelled at Tiff, I’m like, oh my God, it looks right now. He did, it’s true.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco And I still remember when I was doing, I first saw it on Mega Bomberman for the Genesis.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco And I played this game like crazy. The games I’m playing, I played for many,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco many years a kid. And so when I first turned on that scanline filter on the

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Raspberry Pi, I was so happy. Oh my god, it looks right!

⏹️ ▶️ Marco It finally looks the way these games looked. And so some of these effects I thought were too

⏹️ ▶️ Marco much, like the curving of the screen effect, that didn’t look right to me. But

⏹️ ▶️ Marco a very slight blur plus scanlines looks great to me.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Now there is a bit of a downside to scan lines in that if you’re drawing black lines between

⏹️ ▶️ Marco all your like blocky pixel lines it’s gonna make the overall image darker. So you’re gonna want to

⏹️ ▶️ Marco turn the brightness up and depending on what resolution you’re outputting

⏹️ ▶️ Marco is a question of like well how many lines are there of color before you get to a black

⏹️ ▶️ Marco line? You know if you’re if you’re outputting 480p and you’re doing scan

⏹️ ▶️ Marco lines then every other line is gonna have to be black and that’s That’s going to make a very,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco I think that kind of looks like too much of the effect. That doesn’t look good. And it also makes the image very dark.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco It looks just kind of fake and dark. But if you’re outputting 720p, then you can do every third

⏹️ ▶️ Marco line being blackened. That I think looks great. If you go higher,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco you go to 1080p, you can do every fourth line. It looks even better. And so again, like the CRT,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco it had a thin hairline of blackness between each thicker line of rendered pixels.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco The higher resolution you’re rendering at, the better you can render these CRT simulating

⏹️ ▶️ Marco effects, because they depend on sub-pixel level details of how it looks.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco There’s actually devices out there that will take the input of

⏹️ ▶️ Marco hardware consoles and make them look this good on modern TVs,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco including things like scanline effects. The main problem is that when you connect one of these consoles

⏹️ ▶️ Marco to a modern LCD, OLED, whatever TV. They have to read this signal, which

⏹️ ▶️ Marco they expect to be a 480i interlaced old composite

⏹️ ▶️ Marco video signal or something, and try to scale it up and render it on a natively

⏹️ ▶️ Marco progressive higher resolution screen. So they have these converter circuits in them, these upscaler circuits,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco that are assuming that they’re being sent interlaced video. But these old consoles

⏹️ ▶️ Marco are rendering 240p and outputting it in a way that it happened to be interlaced in the output, but

⏹️ ▶️ Marco they’re really rendering progressive content as for ADI. And so the way these converters

⏹️ ▶️ Marco work on the TVs, it makes game content look bad. Like it has certain

⏹️ ▶️ Marco rendering artifacts or scaling artifacts that kind of mess with game content in weird ways and makes it look wrong.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco So there’s this whole category out there of custom designed scalers

⏹️ ▶️ Marco that are made specifically to scale old game content onto modern TVs in a way that

⏹️ ▶️ Marco doesn’t break the MiniTree’s artifacts the way that the built-in scalers do. This goes

⏹️ ▶️ Marco from, you know, simple things like there’s like this little like HDMI converters for individual systems, there’s like one for the N64

⏹️ ▶️ Marco that plugs into the back of it and everything. There’s also a company called RetroTINK. They make

⏹️ ▶️ Marco one that’s just a line doubler. So it’s very simple, it takes in the 240p signal, it

⏹️ ▶️ Marco just line doubles it all to 480p, and that way the the your TV doesn’t have to deinterlace,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco which is the part that introduces a lot of the the artifacting. They’re inexpensive and

⏹️ ▶️ Marco that solution like a line doubler introduces almost no latency. The modern ones even

⏹️ ▶️ Marco have scanline filters built in but because they are only doing 480p they’re making

⏹️ ▶️ Marco very dark lines because they have to darken every other line instead of doing like every third or everything at

⏹️ ▶️ Marco higher resolution. So I wouldn’t recommend this solution if you want a scanline filter but if you want an inexpensive

⏹️ ▶️ Marco good scaler RetroTINK is good for that. There’s a few other options in that price range. There’s also the OSSC,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco the open source scan converter. This is like $200-ish. It is more complex. It’s

⏹️ ▶️ Marco mostly a line doubler, like the RetroTINK, but it has a few more features.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco They have a experimental 3X 720p mode that doesn’t work with all TVs.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco It’s kind of weird, but it’s also a pretty good option. Kind of the Cadillac of options

⏹️ ▶️ Marco is the XRGB Framemeister. Of course, it’s the most expensive. It’s like $350-ish.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco It does things in a different way. It’s actually doing a much more complicated scaling

⏹️ ▶️ Marco thing. It actually introduces, I think, one frame of latency. But it has really, really high quality

⏹️ ▶️ Marco output, and it has the best scanline mode because it can render at 720p or 1080p.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco So you can actually have it look really good. So that’s what I got, of course. I even got this, I’ll

⏹️ ▶️ Marco link to it, I even got this automatic RGB multi-input switcher. So

⏹️ ▶️ Marco now I have, basically, my daisy chain console setup. It’s called the G-Skart SW,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco like just some guy makes it. Custom made just for video game console enthusiasts who

⏹️ ▶️ Marco like RGB output. So this is like, you gotta figure this is not a, not a big market here.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco But so far I have three systems connected to it that have RGB output. I’m waiting on the modded N64

⏹️ ▶️ Marco to get back. It’s great, I have now my awesome setup. I have the XRGB Framemeister

⏹️ ▶️ Marco that is the scaler that adds scan lines, that scales everything awesomely to my TV.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco I have all the old systems, I have flash carts for many of them, I have wireless

⏹️ ▶️ Marco controllers for some of them, and I have an automatic switch that I can just turn on any

⏹️ ▶️ Marco of them that are plugged into it and it just comes up on the TV. And it is the most ridiculous,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco over-the-top, needlessly complicated, needlessly expensive, needlessly large

⏹️ ▶️ Marco setup that I could possibly have come up with, but it’s so cool to actually

⏹️ ▶️ Marco play. This is probably more effort than any of this is worth, but it’s so

⏹️ ▶️ Marco amazing. I’m incredibly satisfied with it. And I don’t recommend that anybody actually do this

⏹️ ▶️ Marco because it is really ridiculous, but man, is it fun.

⏹️ ▶️ John You’re so excited about all this latency. A whole frame of latency just for your scaler and then you

⏹️ ▶️ John have all this, you need to get a CRT. I’m not very good at games, John. The

⏹️ ▶️ John CRT automatically does all that stuff with the scan lines

⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco and

⏹️ ▶️ John dealing with the brightness or whatever, and it

⏹️ ▶️ John, Tiff Arment has no latency.

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment Yeah, but then he wouldn’t have had a month worth of a project to do.

⏹️ ▶️ John So you can get a CRT for much less than the cost of that

⏹️ ▶️ Marco scalar. Oh, I know. But but but like, where am I going to put a CRT? And how am I going to find

⏹️ ▶️ Marco a good one?

⏹️ ▶️ John On

⏹️ ▶️ Marco the

⏹️ ▶️ John floor in front of the place where all these consoles are.

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment We’re going to put it on top of the non-working CRT. Yes.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Now, again, this is a crazy, ridiculous setup. This is really for like true, you

⏹️ ▶️ Marco know, real enthusiasts

⏹️ ▶️ John of this craft. No, the enthusiasts have CRTs. I guarantee the enthusiasts have CRTs. This

⏹️ ▶️ John is, you made a prosumer setup is what you did.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco There’s this whole market of enthusiasts who seek out old pro video monitors because they would actually have

⏹️ ▶️ Marco those BNC connectors, the case you mentioned three hours ago. They would actually have those. So you

⏹️ ▶️ Marco could have your RGB output for super sharp, you know, color separation and everything on a CRT,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco which is the best you could possibly get, really. But the problem is professional video monitors are way

⏹️ ▶️ Marco less common and they were usually not very large and they’re very expensive. So like that’s

⏹️ ▶️ Marco really if you want the Marco solution, it’s defined like a 30 inch PVM somehow that

⏹️ ▶️ Marco has RGB input and use that, but I’m not doing that.

⏹️ ▶️ John But it doesn’t need to be 30. In 30 inch you would start to see weird artifacts that you never saw on your normal size television

⏹️ ▶️ John as a kid, right? You just need a plain old 24 inch CRT, you’ll be fine.

⏹️ ▶️ John Would you do it? Christmas gift, if I was gonna have a retro console setup, Absolutely, I would get a CRT.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey Wow, surprising. Where would you put

⏹️ ▶️ John it? I don’t know, where would I put a retro console game?

⏹️ ▶️ John, Tiff Arment If I was gonna do that, like the whole point

⏹️ ▶️ John is, I would have to be original hardware, original controllers, hooked up to a CRT, because that’s

⏹️ ▶️ John what it was

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment like. Some parents turn their kid’s room into gyms. I think John’s gonna turn his first

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment kid who goes off to college, his room, into a retro gaming room.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey Do it. So, Marco, in a rough order of magnitude, How much

⏹️ ▶️ Casey are you into this financially? Are we talking a couple hundred dollars? And you already have all the systems. Are we talking like a

⏹️ ▶️ Casey couple hundred dollars, a couple thousand dollars? As vague as you would like to be is fine.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey But I ask only because I am like 200 bucks in and that’s because

⏹️ ▶️ Casey I got the really expensive fancy Raspberry Pi dummy setup. You know, if I

⏹️ ▶️ Casey had done the you know what you’re doing setup I would be like 100 bucks in. It sounds like you are

⏹️ ▶️ Casey in a lot deeper than I am so far.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco I haven’t added it up, but it’s like less than a MacBook Pro, but probably not like a ton less.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco But again, if you’re just doing one or two systems, it’s a lot simpler. And if

⏹️ ▶️ Marco you are okay not having the fancy RGB output

⏹️ ▶️ Marco, John with

⏹️ ▶️ Marco a professional scaler, this is where a lot of the money goes. If you don’t do a flash cart, and if you instead

⏹️ ▶️ Marco just get 15 or 20 of your favorite games on eBay that are fairly commonly easy

⏹️ ▶️ Marco to find games, again, these are all things that can make it significantly cheaper. I just went the ridiculous route.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco You?

⏹️ ▶️ John Surprise, right? Your TV is too far away for you to play emulated games on it anyway. You can see if you want to get

⏹️ ▶️ John a cheap setup, buy a CRT, get a used console, boom, done. Less money and it will

⏹️ ▶️ John have better latency and it will look right.

⏹️ ▶️ Casey No, I’m very, very, very happy with my setup here. I really want a second controller, which I’ll probably order

⏹️ ▶️ Casey sooner rather than later so I can play with Declan rather than, you know, one of us watching the other. But

⏹️ ▶️ Casey I cannot say enough good things about the Raspberry Pi and RetroPie on top of it,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey and PiHole for that matter. I mean, this setup for not that much effort,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey you know, it definitely needed some tweaking here and there. And if I didn’t already kind of know how to do this sort

⏹️ ▶️ Casey of thing, it probably would have been very infuriating. But for the kind of person that probably listens to the

⏹️ ▶️ Casey show, it’s definitely within reason to put this together. And in terms of like the physical assembly of the

⏹️ ▶️ Casey Raspberry Pi and putting it in the case and all that, it’s basically like Lego. You just snap stuff in

⏹️ ▶️ Casey and you’re off to the races. So I am not trying to say that Marco’s setup is

⏹️ ▶️ Casey not way better than mine. Marco and Tiff’s setup is way better than mine. I’m not arguing that. I’m just saying

⏹️ ▶️ Casey for almost no effort and almost no money, kind of, I have a really

⏹️ ▶️ Casey decent setup that if you’re not a super purist, and I’m obviously not, then it works

⏹️ ▶️ Casey really well. And I am very, very impressed by it. To the point that I’m wondering if I should get a

⏹️ ▶️ Casey new Raspberry Pi to leave in the office to do the Pi-Hole thing and then move this downstairs to our

⏹️ ▶️ Casey big TV where I can play video games on it and on this 4K OLED

⏹️ ▶️ Casey screen, which as you guys have been discussing is not at all what they’re designed to be played on, but it’s still, it’s

⏹️ ▶️ Casey just fun. It’s just

⏹️ ▶️ Casey, John a lot of

⏹️ ▶️ John fun. You should probably scale the effort and cost to how much time you actually think you’ll spend playing games. Cause

⏹️ ▶️ John like the Raspberry Pi and emulator is a great thing of like, wow, I’m just going to take a tour of all these cool games and have fun with

⏹️ ▶️ John them or whatever. But like eventually, if you’re not going to be like, so are you going to play through the original Zelda and

⏹️ ▶️ John beat it or do you just want to take a brief tour of games and you’re not going to touch it again? Right? So don’t if you invest like,

⏹️ ▶️ John you know, hundreds or thousands of dollars into a big setup and then realize, okay, that was that’s all I wanted

⏹️ ▶️ John to get was making the setup and now I’m not actually going to spend 300 hours

⏹️ ▶️ John playing classic, you know, games. I mean, this equation changes. Obviously, there’s more than one person in your house who wants to play

⏹️ ▶️ John the games. Maybe you have a kid who is actually going to dump 50 to 100 hours into

⏹️ ▶️ John a single game, in which case, you know, it pays off. And if you’re just doing it as a cool fun thing, consider

⏹️ ▶️ John whether Casey’s Raspberry Pi approach will let you sort of get it out of your system

⏹️ ▶️ John without making it a big expensive project. Yeah,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco I mean, that’s probably what most people should do, if I’m honest with myself. That’s

⏹️ ▶️ Marco probably what I should have stuck with. But every time the emulator setup would act like a computer,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco and like, oh, now I got to make the Bluetooth pair again or

⏹️ ▶️ Marco now I got to like remember how I got from this menu to this other place where was that setting again how do I

⏹️ ▶️ Marco do this oh look it just grabbed the input again because the HDMI CEC and Raspberry Pi sucks like

⏹️ ▶️ Marco it’s just there were so many like computery parts of it that just made it feel like work that we’re just

⏹️ ▶️ Marco adding friction to the experience I mean you have the actual old system there’s almost no sources of friction

⏹️ ▶️ Marco at all I mean granted before I got like the the nice scaler to plug into the TV I did

⏹️ ▶️ Marco issues with like the tv showing the wrong aspect ratio or cropping off the corners because it didn’t have overscan

⏹️ ▶️ Marco correction options like stuff like that like i had a lot of problems like getting it to look decent on

⏹️ ▶️ Marco my tv before i went the pro route once i went the pro route those problems disappeared so again

⏹️ ▶️ Marco probably the smartest thing to do is the raspberry pi the second smartest thing to do is to get a crt but

⏹️ ▶️ Marco the dumb and ridiculous thing to do is to get all this crazy stuff and i’m not saying anybody should do this

⏹️ ▶️ Marco but it’s pretty cool

⏹️ ▶️ Casey so tiff how often are you and or Adam playing any of these systems and games and whatnot?

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment Oh, almost never.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Well, the problem is that we set all this up about a month before we developed a family

⏹️ ▶️ Marco super Minecraft addiction. So we haven’t played them like this past month at all.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Uh, but they’re there, they’re ready for us whenever we’re

⏹️ ▶️ John ready. Minecraft should be easier to play in like 2055. Um,

⏹️ ▶️ John, Casey because like

⏹️ ▶️ John it’s in its input is very flexible. You don’t need any special controller. you’re not gonna need to keep around some sensor

⏹️ ▶️ John bar or buy another thing. And it’s the type of game where it’s probably not too onerous

⏹️ ▶️ John to just keep it running on every system. Like Minecraft has already run on so many different platforms and it will

⏹️ ▶️ John probably continue to run. There’s the ray tracing version of Minecraft that

⏹️ ▶️ John people are playing with that will probably be the next iteration. But Minecraft may actually still be a game you can buy

⏹️ ▶️ John when Adam is setting up his retro gaming system when he hits his midlife crisis, right? So

⏹️ ▶️ John that’s a good thing about that particular game. So if you’re going to sink time as a family

⏹️ ▶️ John into Minecraft, that’ll probably be time well spent, and you’ll be able to relive that experience later.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Thanks to our sponsors this week, Hover, Linode, and Eero. and we will talk to you next week.

Ending theme

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment Now the show is over, they didn’t even mean to begin, cause it

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment was accidental, oh it was accidental.

⏹️ ▶️ John John didn’t do any research, Marco and Casey wouldn’t let him,

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment cause it was accidental, Cause it was accidental, it was accidental

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment And you can find the show

⏹️ ▶️ John notes at And if you’re into

⏹️ ▶️ John Twitter, you can follow them

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment At C-A-S-E-Y-L-I-S-S So that’s Casey Liss,

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment M-A-R-C-O-A-R-M Anti-Marco Armin

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment S-I-R-A-C USA Syracuse It’s accidental

⏹️ ▶️ John It’s accidental They didn’t mean to

⏹️ ▶️ John Accidental Accidental Tech Podcasts So

⏹️ ▶️ Casey long


⏹️ ▶️ Casey Tiff, thanks for stopping by. Not that you have to leave or anything, but I appreciate you

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment stopping by. Thanks. Yeah. You guys gonna talk about Apple now? You missed that part of the show. Let’s all just

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment go play some Mario

⏹️ ▶️ Casey Kart. Oh, God, the both of you. Mario,

⏹️ ▶️ Casey, Tiff Arment Mario. I’m

⏹️ ▶️ Casey gonna go play some Mario Kart. He’s telling my grandparents.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco The Long Island is strong this

⏹️ ▶️ Casey week. To be honest, I don’t usually hear Long Island from either of you guys and then

⏹️ ▶️ Casey I hear a Mario dropped and says, Oh, there it is. I can’t say Mario.

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment That’s too

⏹️ ▶️ Casey bougie. Now you’re gonna ruin it because now I never thought of it that way. It’s that way.

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment And thank you guys for letting me crash your show.

⏹️ ▶️ John Anything

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment we can do to help you get a CRT in the gaming room. That’s what it’s all about. The end game. It’s a long

⏹️ ▶️ Casey con. No, we’re

⏹️ ▶️ John here for you. Did you see, by the way, did you see that Last of Us Part 2 is delayed

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment again? It’s delayed

⏹️ ▶️ John again? Again. Well, you know, virus.

⏹️ ▶️ John, Tiff Arment Yeah.

⏹️ ▶️ John Yeah. Yeah. Which fitting.

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment I still have to play Life is Strange 2.

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment, John i still want to

⏹️ ▶️ John yeah i have that sitting in my place and show i’ve haven’t even

⏹️ ▶️ John, Tiff Arment started

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment it it’s just been so much so much minecraft

⏹️ ▶️ John yeah well for me so much destiny

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment still

⏹️ ▶️ John so

⏹️ ▶️ John, Tiff Arment much destiny

⏹️ ▶️ John aliens aren’t going to shoot themselves too

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment thank you for risking your life and protecting

⏹️ ▶️ John us all someone’s got to save the universe who’s going to do it marco no he’s running around collecting rings

⏹️ ▶️ John and then dropping them all and he gets a tiny hit. Get

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment touched by an enemy and the rings just go everywhere. You should really see my Marco in Minecraft right now.

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment He is he’s amazing. I want him on my team all the time.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Well, I’m trying now I’m trying to take down my first one of those ocean fortresses with the big spike fish in them.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco And that’s not easy. Ooh, that is not easy

⏹️ ▶️ John at all. I don’t want to make Marco feel bad, but I’m still measuring to see if Marco is matching up to

⏹️ ▶️ John Alex when he was eight. He’s almost there.

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment Oh, Adam is incredible. he just the stuff

⏹️ ▶️ John he knows. That’s what I’m saying. Like you come to this thing late, but that was the Bane quote. Adam was born into

⏹️ ▶️ John it.

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment Yeah, basically was that kid was born from

⏹️ ▶️ Marco Minecraft. Yeah. So I tried I tried attacking the Spikefish Fortress by coming up from under

⏹️ ▶️ Marco it. Like I had an island like a little while away and I had a little establishment on. So I just tunneled

⏹️ ▶️ Marco under the ocean and came up under the fish fortress, which actually is not

⏹️ ▶️ Marco a bad idea if you just want a whole bunch of those cool blue blocks. but doesn’t make it any easier to kill the spikefish.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco And I keep getting the spoon disease where I can’t mine anymore from the big ghost spikefish and it’s really

⏹️ ▶️ Marco tricky. It doesn’t make it that much easier to come from the bottom. You guys should

⏹️ ▶️ John graduate to creative mode soon.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco No, come on. I like that it’s hard to get

⏹️ ▶️ John some of this stuff. It’s gonna happen. It’s gonna happen eventually. Eventually when you start building your giant world

⏹️ ▶️ John eating computers, you’re in creative mode for a

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment long time. You need to see the Dubai Friday server and the stuff that people have built in

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment survival mode. It’s absolutely incredible. Have you been on there yet? Me? No.

⏹️ ▶️ John What’s wrong with you? I live this Minecraft phase already. My children are

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment older. Right. Just get on there and walk around and check

⏹️ ▶️ John it out. I did enjoy hearing Merlin joining the server and then walking into the water and drowning. It’s a very Merlin

⏹️ ▶️ John thing to do. Yeah. I

⏹️ ▶️ Marco literally just walked into the ocean. I feel like I feel like it’s much more impressive if you can

⏹️ ▶️ Marco do really cool stuff in survival mode. Because it adds cost,

⏹️ ▶️ Marco it adds difficulty, it adds

⏹️ ▶️ John resistance. Right, but eventually your ambitions outgrow survival mode and you

⏹️ ▶️ John need the freedom afforded by an entire universe in creative mode. I don’t know, I think we’re doing

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment okay. It’s amazing. The people want us to have a gaming podcast, John.

⏹️ ▶️ John People. Yeah, well, hmm.

⏹️ ▶️ Tiff Arment That’s what it would be. It’ll just be me being like, John, isn’t this great? And

⏹️ ▶️ John be like, that

⏹️ ▶️ John, Tiff Arment is

⏹️ ▶️ John accurate. No, I would be super into it if I could get an extra 10 hours

⏹️ ▶️ John in each day and or not have a job.

⏹️ ▶️ Marco New job game. Yeah, jobs are overrated. Yep.