Tech Douchebags Retired

Tech Douchebags

TDB is a twelve-step program for technology snobs disguised as a comedic interview podcast - humorously helping geeks confront their digital narcissism and unhealthy attachment to their gadgets & devices.

Hosted by Jordan Cooper.

#25: The Insular Poker Player

September 14, 2014 at 7:45PM • 1 hour 44 minutes

In this week’s meeting, Michele Lewis shares her experience playing in and covering the professional poker circuit, how technology and social media has changed the game for both the better and worse, why software is eating the online poker world, how it has shielded players from developing people skills, and how "whiz kids" have squeezed all the fun out of the game for recreational players.

In addition, we discuss the perils of preserving your phone's battery life during a tournament, choosing the right headphones to suit your needs at the table, how the poker media continually promotes delusions of grandeur, and using Zynga as a sadly positive example, why it's so important for poker rooms to innovate in order to attract "dead money" back to the community.

It concludes with Michele completing step eleven by admitting that her experience inside the professional tournament circuit may have limited her exposure to the needs of recreational players and the ordinary middle class poker-loving American.

#24: The Manic-Depressive Entrepreneur

September 7, 2014 at 5:00PM • 1 hour 29 minutes

In this week’s meeting, Chase Reeves of Fizzle goes through a step four whirlwind sharing facets of his entrepreneurial anxiety & depression, gravitating towards things that show immediate & clearer results, struggling to transition traditional offline behaviors to our new digital identities, and that online and off, we're all rarely ever confident simply being ourselves.

In addition, we discuss how "likes" and "favorites" are a new passive form of communication, how easy access to expert analysis has ruined meaningful discussions with friends & family, whether or not it matters keeping up with the never-ending cycle of current events, how society's greatest creative minds usually know little about the technical details, and in contemplating the meaning of existence, admitting and accepting that life isn't fair.

#23: The Data-Driven Denouncer

August 31, 2014 at 5:00PM • 1 hour 49 minutes

In this week’s meeting, Tom Reestman shares the fact that he doesn't have a Google account, why he prefers not to support business models that rely on selling users' data, how we really need to redefine what "free" means in the digital age, and how Google & Facebook's futuristic endeavors are just shiny objects meant to distract us from their true intentions.

In addition, on the doorstep of a new Apple product announcement, we discuss how geeks have an insatiable appetite for predictions, the mindset that if something doesn't look different that it can't be different, why a change in product strategy isn't necessarily bad, and how we tend to tie our identities to a specific company rather than to the benefits others could provide us.

It concludes with Tom completing step ten in a lively debate on whether or not there's anything ultimately wrong with a business copying a successful competitor, how device manufacturers that do may actually be benefiting the consumer market, and if anyone outside of the pundits and parties themselves really care who got there first.

#22: The Book Hoarder

August 24, 2014 at 3:30PM • 1 hour 10 minutes

In this week’s meeting, Scott McNulty of The Incomparable and Random Trek shares his pathological need to buy more books despite the 1000+ he has that remain unread, why he owns at least 14 different Kindles and has an obsession with e-ink devices, his irrational fascination with the Oxford English Dictionary, and how compulsion and the sense of accomplishment fuels the "nerd" economy.

In addition, we debate the best & worst Star Trek series, how geeks enjoy science fiction because of the "rules", why morally ambiguous characters make for better fiction, how binge watching has made people more picky and more entitled, and how we may prefer "armchair quarterbacking" a TV show more than actually enjoying the story presented to us.

It concludes with Scott completing step two by admitting that there's no digital reading device - regardless of screen refresh rate or storage capacity - that will ever quash his incessant need to acquire more books.

#21: The Slighted Salesperson

August 17, 2014 at 10:30AM • 32 minutes

In this week’s meeting, Peter Cohen of iMore shares some 'war stories' from working at an Apple Authorized Service Provider, how he has no tolerance for people that treat him like an idiot drone, why someone with a little knowledge can be a dangerous thing, and what types of customers he enjoys dealing with and which ones he absolutely despises.

In addition, we discuss how Apple's reputation for stellar customer service may have raised consumers' expectations to unrealistic proportions, whether or not AppleCare is truly worth it for the always-upgrading tech geek, and who exactly should be to blame for a bad retail experience anywhere.

It concludes with Peter completing step five by admitting that on many occasions he has acted just as entitled and disrespectful as the rich assholes that frequent his store.

#20: The Internet Girl Scout

August 11, 2014 at 9:15AM • 29 minutes

In this week’s meeting, Jamie Young of AppAdvice confesses her irrational urge to point out other people's faux pas online, how she has a thirst for justice on the internet when false credit is taken for another person's brilliance, and how her longstanding issues with Tweetbot 3 may come across as entitled due to her bleeding edge use case.

In addition, we discuss a purist's perspective of the true purpose of a smartphone's homescreen, how we put too much stock in what an app icon looks like when judging it, why someone's disorganized phone screens make us twitch, and whether or not this type of 'homescreen porn' is a form of obsessive-compulsive disorder.

It concludes with Jamie completing step nine by apologizing to the so-called 'troll' who commented on her blog that her app complaints are an instance of 'only my use case matters'.

#19: The Passive-Aggressive Rage Quitter

August 4, 2014 at 8:15AM • 1 hour 6 minutes

In this week’s meeting, Kevin Purdy of 5by5's In Beta confesses to his obsession with Foursquare and shares his recent attempt to leave Facebook despite the reactions from his friends & family, how Facebook is too ubiquitous of a communication method to quit for most people and why geeks treat quitting a product, service or platform as an opportunity for narcissistic activism compared to mainstream folk who just do so in silence.

In addition, we discuss our tendency to record every minutiae of our lives, explore Kevin's fixation on his data & privacy, why the lower right corner in Windows is a bastion of both good intentions and pure evil, and how seeking an "outcast" community to fit into is simply an effect of technological acuity no longer being counterculture.

It concludes with Kevin committing to step eight by making a list of all the local acquaintances in Buffalo that he's failed to make a "real life" human connection due to inadequacy, arrogance or just plain laziness.

#18: The Judgy Comedian

July 28, 2014 at 8:15AM • 1 hour 16 minutes

In this week’s meeting, Scott Simpson shares how insularity in the technology industry is similar to that of the stand-up comedy world, why those closer to the source build a high tolerance for what they'd consider "amazing", and how his experience working for Apple & Amazon definitely sheds a light on corporate culture that brainwashes employees into believing they're changing the world.

In addition, we discuss both the valid and short-sighted criticism of services like Uber & AirBNB, how making things cheaper and more efficient for the privileged set can wipe out options for the poor, how every person has a worldview that is overlaid on every single thing they say or do, and that "success" can simply be a moment of connection as most people spend their lives seeking to just be the hero of their own story.

It concludes with Scott completing step eleven by admitting that he pegs people as "stupid" too quickly and will make a concerted effort to acknowledge their motivations are as valid as his own - even if the way they go about fulfilling them are decidedly idiotic and wasteful.

#17: The Prying Parent

July 21, 2014 at 9:00AM • 58 minutes

In this week’s meeting, John Chidgey of the Pragmatic podcast shares his discomfort & guilt spying on his children's internet activity, how technology has make it both easier & harder for parents to monitor their kids' communications, and why giving fairly free access to information online is the digital version of letting children go outside to "play in the mud".

In addition, we discuss the double standard that exists between couples who both continuously check their smartphones, why geeks are typically not blinded by traditionally held values and beliefs, how much you can learn about someone just through their browser history, and how the internet and communication regulations killed ham radio.

It concludes with John completing step eight by considering to find a trustful middle ground for his 11-year old daughter and inform her that he does sporadically look into the details of her iPad usage, browser and chat history.

#16: The Disgruntled Blogger

July 14, 2014 at 3:45AM • 1 hour 12 minutes

In this week’s meeting, Stefan Constantinescu of Tab Dump and former writer for Engadget expresses his disdain for "pageview journalism", why he feels legacy publications are more trustworthy than new media outlets, how knowing how the sausage gets made ruins his enjoyment of the internet, and why there's no solution when the general public doesn't seem to care about the proliferation of ads nor is willing to actually pay for content.

In addition, we discuss the hierarchy of communication methods based on urgency of response, meticulously managing notification settings to conform to your lifestyle, how technophiles consume the internet much differently than the average person, and the importance of finding hobbies outside of your given industry to preserve your sanity.

It concludes with Stefan venturing past step twelve by admitting he voluntarily subjects himself to the things that piss him off the most - and will seek a regular 9-5 office job for a simpler life away from the rat race of technology blogging.