New Morning Edition Theme Blows

The outgoing 40-year old theme is like a comfortable pair of old shoes. It’s reassuring. This new theme is … not.

From an article in The Atlantic

The old theme—known for its inquisitive guitar and jazz piano—went off the air last week after 40 years of service. It was replaced on Monday with a new one that churns through dozens of ideas in 58 seconds: There’s a trip-hop remix of the old melody, a synthesized set of chimes conveying either urgency or the imminent arrival of an elevator, and a clatter of percussion that sounds “global” without evoking any one country in particular.

“For me, it was so reminiscent of childhood, of car rides to school,” [classical composer Timo] Andres told me later of the old theme. “Even though, objectively, it sounds like an artifact from a universe where Steely Dan was co-opted into writing state-propaganda music.”

The new theme, meanwhile, was summarized more pithily by [jazz singer Theo] Bleckmann. “Yeah, it sucks,” he said.

What say you bastards?

Oops

Let this be a lesson to you early adopters.

Samsung’s futuristic Galaxy Fold is launching this month, and the device has already made its way to a select group of reviewers and influencers. During the run-up to the device’s launch, there were concerns about the durability of the folding display, and now after just a few days with the public, the device is already experiencing problems. There are numerous reports of Samsung’s $2,000 device breaking after a single day, sometimes due to poor durability, other times due to user error.

Check it out.

Joker

I really think Heath Ledger set the bar for this role. Joaquin looks like he might give him a run for the money though. Who’s in on this one?

Open the Pod Bay Doors, HAL

Google Duplex, coming to an iPhone near you.

Google Duplex is one of the more impressive products Google has shown off in recent years. Just ask the Google Assistant to make a restaurant reservation at a certain time, and it will do it. By “do it,” I mean it will make a phone call to a business, speak to the business on your behalf with one of the most human-sounding computer-generated voices ever made, negotiate a reservation time, and get back to you.

I can’t decide if I’m excited or terrified.

Celebrity Shout Out

Hey Bastards, really loving the blargh

Have any of you basterds seen this? Cameo is website that connects you with your favorite celebrity, who will then make a custom video for you. For a price. So I could get Flavor Flav to put together a custom video mocking Makerbots skills on the bass guitar. Tommy Lee is over $300, but Lance Bass is only $199. That’s money well spent…

More Tarantino

I can’t really tell what the story is supposed to be about, but this looks pretty good. Brad Pitt has a way of finding ways to get in cool movies, so I’m going to give them the benefit of a doubt. I’m not seeing Samuel L Jackson, so that’s a minus, but Margot Robbie is nice eye candy. What say you bastards?

Another Podcast You Won’t Listen To

Jaw-dropping deception. This podcast is especially recommended to the medically inclined among us.

Money. Romance. Tragedy. Deception. The story of Elizabeth Holmes and Theranos is an unbelievable tale of ambition and fame gone terribly wrong. How did the world’s youngest self-made female billionaire lose it all in the blink of an eye? How did the woman once heralded as “the next Steve Jobs” find herself facing criminal charges — to which she pleaded not guilty — and up to 20 years in jail? How did her technology, meant to revolutionize healthcare, potentially put millions of patients at risk? And how did so many smart people get it so wrong along the way? ABC News chief business, technology and economics correspondent Rebecca Jarvis, along with producers Taylor Dunn and Victoria Thompson, take listeners on a journey that includes a three-year-long investigation. You’ll hear exclusive interviews with former employees, investors, and patients, and for the first-time, the never-before-aired deposition testimony of Elizabeth Holmes, and those at the center of this story. New episodes post Wednesdays.

Check it out here. By the way, the title is a double entendre I just got.