Your roundup of tech, culture, and nostalgia for

October 17, 2023 // Web version //

TimeMachiner. Tech, culture, nostalgia. By Aaron Crocco
Inside Today's Issue:
Ala Cable Carte
Ham & ISS
A Day Late, A Dollar Short

Read to the end for a post about Kirk's Spooky Plans.

So let's call last week what it was: a missed week of TimeMachiner. It's something I'm not fond of and generally I miss weeks when there's a holiday or when I've had too much going on. Last week's non-issue was mainly that second point. I've been mentally exhausted a lot more lately with my not-so-new job I landed a few months ago. The mental energy it takes leaves less room for writing and sharing the internet with you all. But that doesn't mean I'm stopping. It simply means I need to write when I can and not leave all the work for Mondays before I send things out 12 hours later. And, yes it's a Monday afternoon that I'm typing this. I haven't learned my lesson yet.

My last weekend was busy for good reasons though. I got engaged and that's been a big mental piece that has (in a good way!) left less room for writing. Big, exciting things are in my future but I wanted to share the good news with you.

This is all a lot to say that life is complicated and busy and full of things that stop us from doing the things we want to do. It's weirdly been a bit harder to source some great content for TimeMachiner in the past month. The backlog of great items I've found has started to run dry and I'm waiting for more odd things to happen in the world that I can bring to you. It's certainly an odd waiting game I didn't think would come. On the flip-side I've been able to get some items out to you that I've had on the back burner that you'll see in today's issue.

Further in the good news department is the return of hockey season, which is a love of mine. I attended opening night for my NY Islanders and saw them squeak out a win against Buffalo. I try to keep my sports talk to a minimum here, but suffice it to say that I'm hopeful for a good season of "sports puck".

Finally, this past Friday I attended NY Comic Con and stumbled upon a table where the American Gladiators were in attendance. I was super excited because I didn't know they were there and I LOVED that show as a kid. I watched the documentary Muscles & Mayhem in two nights and it was great. For anyone who enjoyed the show, it's a must-watch. Anyhow, at the con I got to meet Nitro, Zap, Ice, and Laser. They were all so nice, took photos and signed some stuff, all for a price. Normally I don't do any of that stuff but I doubt they'll be there next year and it was too good of an opportunity to pass up. Serendipity at its finest.

I hope you have a great week.


PS: If you're enjoying my work here on TimeMachiner, please forward this email to a friend who'd like it too. It helps me grow. Thank you. 😊

Ala Cable Carte
Twenty years ago the 'promise land' for TV was not only cutting the cord but getting access to only the channels or networks you wanted. The Ala Carte model was a pipe dream until Netflix kicked off the streaming revolution. Fast-forward to today and you have a plethora of streaming services to choose from: Netflix, Disney+, Apple TV+, Hulu, YouTube TV, Paramount+, HBO Max, and on and on. But in a cruel twist of fate, it's now even more expensive to watch this content than traditional cable. Ben Lovejoy at 9to5Mac has more. As little as a year ago, a popular set of streaming services added up to a total cost of $73 per month – compared to $83 for an equivalent cable package. But the latest round of streaming price increases has pushed that cost to $87, says aFinancial Timesanalysis, making it more expensive than cable. Apple TV+ was…
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Ham & ISS
Leave it to creative and ambitious amateur radio operators to do things I never thought possible. Earlier this year an amateur radio operator was able to make contact with the International Space Station using nothing more than a handheld antenna. The radio operator, KB8M, recorded the interaction and it's below. Also something very cool is the card shown at the end. A comment on Reddit sheds some light onto it. For those unfamiliar with amateur radio, the card shown at 2:41 of the video is a QSL Card. These are little post cards that are normally sent through the mail to confirm that a two-way communication took place.These normally have details about the location and construction of the radio facility. But in this case, there's a summary of the construction of the space station! Finally, "73" (said by the guy in the video, and written on the QSL card by…
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