Got the latest iGadget? Have you joined the Apple Revolution? Apparently more than mere products, there are those who argue that the iPod, iMac, iPhone and iPad are part of an 'Apple Revolution' that elevated computing - and the development of human consciousness itself - to a higher plane. But are such plaudits really merited?

Steve Jobs' legacy undoubtedly influenced computing in a big way, but Apple is, of course, just one company among many. This week on SOTT Talk Radio we're going to look at the state of information technology and ask whether it's liberating us, or imprisoning us. From tablets and laptops to wi-fi and smartphones, what effects are these tech toys having on humanity?

Running Time: 02:10:00

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Here's the transcript:

Niall: Hello listeners. Yes indeed, you're listening to SOTT Talk Radio. My name is Niall Bradley. Stepping in for Joe Quinn this week is Scott Ogrin AKA Mr. Scott.

Scott: Hi there.

Niall: He's our SOTT Net webmaster and chief audio engineer for SOTT Talk Radio. Also on our panel of experts this week we have Michael and Jason.

Michael/Jason: Hello.

Niall: Both of them are software developers. Welcome gentlemen. This week: Steve Jobs' Apple Revolution and the Fall of Man. We're discussing Apple. That's the company, not the fruit. And we're going to be looking at, more generally, the state of information technology today and trying to answer the question: Is it liberating or imprisoning humanity? If you've got any comments or questions for us, you can call in. The show number is on the BlogTalk Radio page: 718-508-9499. Or you can join in our live discussion in the chat room on the show page.

So to give listeners some background to today's show, a thread recently opened up on our forum concerning a documentary entitled Gurdjieff and Steve Jobs. Steve Jobs of course is the now-deceased founder of Apple. Georges Gurdjieff was an influential spiritual teacher in the first half of the 20th century. He taught that most humans live their lives in a state of hypnotic waking sleep but that it is possible to transcend to a higher state of consciousness and achieve full human potential. This discipline was known as the Fourth Way although he also described it as esoteric Christianity.

Now what, you may be wondering, does any of that have to do with a computer company? Well, the YouTube video blurb for this Gurdjieff and Steve Jobs documentary claims that "Apple incorporated products can generally be understood as focusing, amplifying and facilitating tools for the growth and expansion of emotional brain capacity". It goes on: "The products marketed by Steve Jobs embody a new important way, essential for the survival of human life". That's a pretty bold set of claims. So what do you think, Steve Jobs, Apple products?

Jason: I think that's kind of humorous that it's the exact reverse. Because I think when Gurdjieff was talking about man as a machine, if he had been talking today, he would have been mentioning the people who sit out for three days on the sidewalk to buy iPods.

Scott: Actually, it's worse than that because now with the release of the iPhone 5S, what was making the news was - of course there were the people who were standing in line for - I think this time was two days, to be fair - which is still ridiculous - but now they made a big stink about the fact that, rightly so, that many people were actually paying someone else to wait in line for them.

Niall: To hold their place.

Scott: Yeah.

Niall: Because they were afraid there wouldn't be enough iPhone 5S to go around?

Scott: Well I guess they had to go to work to pay the exorbitant fee to actually have one so they ...

Michael: It's also problematic that they mention Gurdjieff to market Apple's products because of course he's deceased and has no say in this. So it would be interesting to hear what he would have to say about that.

Jason: I think actually he did say a lot of stuff on two particular ideas; one of course was objective art in which he trashes what most people consider art and therefore by extension, pretty much does trash what Steve Jobs and all these people say about it. But something really big that Gurdjieff and most people inside of esoteric studies are against, is the concept of identification, that is that you should not be identifying with things, especially not a piece of computer hardware. But the entire Apple advertising campaign is about basically creating the identity as a Mac user and all of their products are named like iMac, iLife, iMovie, iPod, iCalendar, "i" and all of this stuff. And Apple, for a number of years, has built their entire advertising campaign on basically "exploiting" the emotions of people, exploiting their lack of identity, their confusion, and giving them an identity as a Mac user. They're trapped into this sort of closed world where everything is sort of shiny and smooth and sane and Apple does everything for you.

Apple is kind of like the ultimate big brother kind of corporation. It is the most closed corporation. It is the most totalitarian corporation of all of the computer ones. It's worse than IBM. It's worse than Intel, in that particular way. So it's kind of interesting that this guy, who appears to me, just my opinion, to be your typical shyster, charlatan fourth way guy, just my opinion of course. Because what you didn't generally see with those types of people, they don't understand what they're taking over. They're your typical kind of like psychopathic person who moves into an ideology and then starts to invert, basically, everything that made that ideology what it is and this is kind of basically an example of that. He's basically inverted everything from fourth way esoteric teachings.

Niall: Indeed, iPhone, iPad, it gives a whole new meaning to many I's.

Jason: Yeah.

Scott: Even iLife.

Jason: iLife, yeah.

Niall: You can buy a life from Apple?

Jason: It's the Apple life.

Scott: The software package. I don't use Mac so I'm not entirely sure...

Jason: In all fairness, I have a Mac. I have a Mac mini. I have used it. And I've used iMovie and I've used iCalendar, or whatever it is, a little bit. Nothing was good enough to keep me there.

Niall: You have tasted of the forbidden fruit!

Jason: I have tasted of the forbidden fruit and kind of spit it out. It was like, vile.

Michael: Just to give an idea of what this video is talking about that we just mentioned it says "Apple's disruptive products make us generally smarter and more productive. As with paper and pen, intelligence of the material attracts the intelligence of the user. These products are intelligence amplifiers. They're especially useful for second brain functions such as seeing and hearing. They excel at imaging, which is essential for all the brains, but is particularly relevant for second brain function; learning and play. For example games, music, and art" and here again we have this focus on art. So that is one of the reasons why Apple is very prevalent among artists, graphic artists, music artists, etc.

Jason: Well we should like really be honest about how prevalent Apple is. Because from the way that it's presented, you would think that these guys are everywhere. And they're everywhere in the media because they really shell out a lot of money for that and they have a very, very vocal user base that they call the MacBoard. But you're talking about in the U.S. right; they're probably about number three, from all the computer manufacturers. I think HP and Dell or maybe something like that. In the world, they're not even on the list.

Scott: Actually, yeah, I have the figures here. For fiscal year 2012, in the global PC market share by units sold, HP is number one with 16%, Lenovo is number two, Dell number three, Acer number four, and Asus number five. Apple doesn't even make the list. That's for PCs. No smart phones or tablets or anything.

Jason: So even in the cell phone market, the pure cell phone market, Apple is not that big. In the smart phone market, if you select down to the smart phone market, just the smart phones, Apple is a big player. They're right under Samsung.

Scott: Well for Q3 (third quarter) of 2013 Strategy Analytics says that Samsung sold 120 million smart phones; Apple sold 30 million.

Jason: That's the latest numbers, right?

Scott: That's for Q3 of this year.

Jason: Right.

Scott: Just so in case any of our listeners have steam shooting out of your ears, this data actually came from pro-Mac websites.

Jason: Yeah, pro-Mac websites. I think it was at the end of 2012 or something like that, Apple was right under Samsung. I think Apple had sold 93 million or something. I don't remember the exact numbers. But Samsung had sold altogether almost 200 million. It was huge. It was this huge number. So the disparity between first and second place in that situation was very large. So Apple as a general rule has about between - depending on how you stack the situation and what markets you look at and what markets you put together - they might have between six and twelve percent of the market. So they're a super minority. They're not really big. PCs are the biggest thing. They're the number one sellers in every kind of department. And this whole thing about Apple makes more money than anybody combined, only when you put them in the right kind of light and look at them from the right kind of direction. Samsung makes everything. It makes vacuum cleaners. I think we have a Samsung vacuum cleaner. This company is the little - I don't even know how to classify them.

Scott: That's actually true. Because in the article where I got this information about the smart phone sales, one of the things they noted was 'well okay, Samsung has sold four times as many smart phones', which in and of itself is not a good thing, but we'll get to that in a little bit. Well, we'll get there. Hang on a sec.

Jason: [laughing]

Scott: So anyway, so Samsung sold four times as many as Apple in the third quarter of this year, right? But then they kind of go on to say well, but you see, the margins, or the profits, or all that financial nonsense, basically what it comes down to is that Apple makes an obscene amount of money per product sold whereas Samsung doesn't because Apple has positioned itself as like the BMW of computing.

Jason: Yeah.

Scott: I hear that one a lot. That's funny.

Jason: Except that they really kind of basically purchase all their hardware from pretty much the same company that almost everyone else does. So I don't know how they justify the high-end nature of their equipment.

Niall: Well that's something I want to get to in a bit, the claims; Apple is the best at this and the best at that.

Jason: All of the claims false, period.

Niall: We'll get there soon. By way of general comment, the reason we picked up on this, this YouTube video of Gurdjieff and Steve Jobs, it's absurd to us but nevertheless I think it speaks to something that Apple is eulogized and Steve Jobs is deified. He's dead now; he's practically been raised to the plane of the gods. The Gurdjieff comparison is obviously a stretch, but that religious flavor, that sort of has whipped up this blind belief that many people do buy into Mac products, seem to carry with them. What's going on there?

Scott: Actually, regarding this video, it's called Gurdjieff and Steve Jobs: A Documentary. And it was made by a guy named John Amaral I believe his name is. We should probably also indicate that in the video this guy claims all kinds of interesting things. We have a little clip here that we'll play for you in a second. He apparently has his own software company now and it has something to do with some kind of software or site about teaching people to sing with perfect pitch or something. He makes the claim that something in like one in 10,000 people has perfect pitch when they sing. So if people would use his glorious software product, then we might be able to get it to one in 100 and this would revolutionize everything because music is kind of the solution to - it's almost like he claims that people being able to sing would sort of solve all of the world's problems. Now I like singing karaoke as much as the next guy, but I'm not so sure that would do it. He even goes so far as to say that being able to sing well would become a permanent part of our genetic code and then everything would be fine. I'm paraphrasing a little.

Jason: To get back to his question on this Steve Jobs thing, because this is very interesting. Steve Jobs is a classic kind of cult leader basically. That's what he is.

Niall: Just before we go there.

Scott: Let me play this clip because I think it'll give the listeners a good idea of where we're coming from and the reason why we're doing this show. So let me just play this here for you.
[VIDEO]: Consider products which show attentive craft, particularly the craft of making artful tools. "We have seen the enemy and it is us" Pogo by Walt Kelly. Apple's tools are both disruptive and reconciliatory. They are responses to what is needed. They have become available exactly when we need them to digest the energies of our accelerating environment, a need made more urgent by the threat of nuclear weapons. In particular Gurdjieff says that we are atrophied in our second brain capacities of relationship. Second brain tools can be seen as anecdotal. They enhance and facilitate relationship. The technologies invented by Steve Jobs and company can be seen, in his words, as bicycles for the mind; tools particularly designed to replace popular but inefficient tools for second brain digestion and expression, which simultaneously disrupt the associated industrial institutions which market and deliver them. "It's up to ourselves" Dushka Howard, Gurdjieff's daughter. It is particularly important to note that the success of such inventions depends to a large part on the business survival of the companies producing them, in this case Apple. To restate, no Apple, no insanely great, aesthetically pleasing tool toys. While Apple is at the front of product development and selling, the effect over time has been to drive up the quality of competitive products in the marketplace. If you're not using Apple products today, you are still receiving some benefits of those products in the competitive products you use. One effect of this innovation is that despite the vast wasteland that television has become, the upper level of college students today is better informed about what is going on in the world than any generation ever has been.

These are the children who will meet each other and the aliens.

Jason: And the aliens.

Niall: And the what?

Scott: O-h m-y g-o-d. This guy, he's a former Apple employee, so obviously there's a special place in his heart for Apple.

Niall: And his brain apparently.

Scott: I guess so.

Niall: Seriously, I think that's wiseacaring to a whole other level. College students today, they don't even have basic literacy down.

Jason: Yeah.

Niall: And what, he thinks buying an iPhone's going to...

Jason: Well on that topic, and this I found really surprising, David Patterson, who designed RAID (Redundant Array of Independent Disks), he was talking about his computer science course and this is the one thing that almost made me fall out of my seat. The way that they've organized computer science courses now of course is they have three weeks of total time to teach somebody about computers and he's actually fallen back to, because of that teaching, people computer science with Cucumber and Rails (Cucumber is a tool that executes plain-text functional descriptions as automated tests. Rails is an open source web application framework). And I almost fell out of my seat. They think that they know something about computers. They know how to program weapons. That's what has happened now. So what he is saying is so ridiculous.

Scott: Yeah, that's not restricted just to computer science. It's also in the engineering fields and everything is computer-aided design and blah, blah, blah. Universities, especially the fancier universities, they don't teach you the fundamentals and core concepts. They teach you things like Cucumber and Rails.

Jason: I realize that us three realize how ridiculous what I just said was, but maybe to give people an example so that they understand what I mean by that, that is essentially like giving somebody a degree in painting when all they have done is use a paint-by-numbers. That is functionally the equivalent. If you don't know anything about Rails and Cucumber and stuff like that, okay, cool you don't. That is basically giving someone a degree in fine art, painting an illustration, after they've done one painting in a paint-by-numbers. That is basically what I have just said, in the equivalent to computer science. So this whole statement that the college people are educated, a computer science degree and a buck-twenty-five will get you a coffee latte at Starbucks. That is the extent of it. It is really quite irrelevant. If someone says to me that "I have a computer science degree", I'll walk away just because I know that they're not even going to be worth talking to, as a general rule.

Niall: So you were going to say something about the kind of cult of personality that followed Steve Jobs...

Jason: People who watch and read our stuff, that we always harp on this Political Ponerology stuff, and Lobacewzski talks about people called spellbinders; people who have this really sort of charismatic, magnetic personality, and they have a reality distortion field around them. So that when you talk to them, all of your reason has kind of been sucked out and they can convince you of anything. They can convince you that white is black.

And when you hear people describe Steve Jobs that is basically what they fundamentally describe. They describe a person who can basically take credit for inventing everything, which he did not, and he's just charismatic and so sure and so powerful and he just speaks "dah" and this and that and he's a typical kind of spellbinder. He's a typical kind of Jim Jones kind of cult leader type of person. And the people who follow him around and think that he's the second coming of Jesus, they've drunk the Mac Kool-Aid and there's nothing really more to say about it. It's very, very obvious when you look at him because here you have a guy who has no skill whatsoever on a computer, right? He can't program. He doesn't know anything. In one interview he didn't even know what Kerberos was (a computer network authentication protocol which works on the basis of 'tickets' to allow nodes communicating over a non-secure network to prove their identity to one another in a secure manner).

Niall: He didn't actually develop the software or the programming?

Jason: He didn't know anything about computers.

Niall: He hired people to do that?

Jason: He hired people to do that. He doesn't know anything about technology. All he knows is it looks nice and that was his big thing. He wanted things to look nice, have a slick package, a nice package you know always trying to push the packaging on it. That was Steve Jobs' innovation. He was good at it, eh? And the reason he was good at it is because he has a deep understanding of human psychology. Who else has those, spellbinders, these psychopathic individuals that they're talking about in ponerology? Those people that have a deep understanding of normal human psychology and they exploit it. And that's what Apple does. All of its advertising campaigns are geared towards exploiting peoples' psychology.

Michael: Yeah, Steve Jobs was not a technician. Actually the Wikipedia entry about him says "Steve Jobs was an American entrepreneur, marketer and inventor" and the term inventor is only because he filed a few patents.

Jason: He filed a few patents on what other people created.

Michael: What other people invented.

Jason: Right. So he owned those patents only because someone else invented them. He was more of a failure than he was a success. He actually failed quite a bit. But no one ever talks about that because he was the first to market with the Apple I. Nobody else was really making that. And he got control of this Steve Wozniak character who was a genius. Stuff that you hear that Steve Wozniak did at a time when he was basically inventing stuff, it just wasn't done, nobody thought about it, I mean he was hard core. This guy was like a computing electrical engineering god.

Scott: I think it's the first gizmos they ever made, it was Jobs and Wozniak, and Wozniak was the one who pretty much made it.

Jason: Well Wozniak was the one who did it. Because Steve Jobs, when he was 16 or something, he glommed onto Wozniak to exploit him basically, to sell these blue boxes, which were like freaking boxes for making free phone calls. They were really popular back in the '70s and even into the '80s. So basically he was a criminal by most standards. He was basically making equipment to cheat the phone company out of money. So, whatever, that was something unique back then.

And then Wozniak I guess started to see that there was this whole community of people who were basically hardware and computer hobbyist. Because when the microprocessor came out I think it had been designed basically to make calculators, reprogrammable calculators because the company making them didn't want to have to create a completely new product every time somebody wanted a different type of calculator so they made these programmable chips. And it was these guys, it was Wozniak and these computer hobbyists who looked at this and said "Hey wait a minute. We could do a little bit more with it" and they started to get together and form these groups. And of course Steve Jobs came in and said "Oh, here's an easy way for me to make some money" basically.

So he gets control of Wozniak and they come out with the Apple I at that time. And he takes it and he sells it to the guy who had a computer store in Byte Magazine or something like that, I don't remember the specific history, and that was basically it. He was the first to market and because he was the first one there and he did have the vision to see that, well not really because he just wanted to make a buck in a certain sense, he didn't really even realize what a tiger he had by the tail because you see how quickly he failed once other people came into the market and started innovating because he was pushing for more aesthetically pleasing stuff when the technology couldn't support it. I think it was the Apple II or something, I can't remember, that they shipped without a fan because they didn't like the noise. And you had to lift it up in the air and drop it to get the board to set back in place because the heat would cause it to pop out and stuff.

Because he wasn't interested in the technology aspect of it, he wasn't interested in all this "connecting the world" and "I'm doing all this stuff". He was trying to make a buck and then he ended up riding a really big horse and a bunch of other companies came in and said "No, this is how we do this". They organized themselves and then Apple just went [makes sound of something crashing] and Steve Jobs was just pretty much shown for the fraud he was.

Niall: Something a lot of Mac users will parrot is that their hardware andsoftware is better, faster, more reliable, gives more options, more choice, etc. etc. Are we saying that all of these claims are not true?

Michael: False.

Jason: Every one one of them.

Niall: How did they get to that point? Were they just lying?

Jason: Yeah, more or less.

Niall: If they make the claim that this iPod runs on this, therefore it's faster...

Jason: The part where they say "therefore it's better". But they usually sometimes tell the truth.

Scott: They don't actually always say it's faster. For example, with the release of the latest iPhone, the big thing was that it uses this A7 processor. Now as far as I could find, no one actually knows what's in the A7 processor because it's a more closely guarded secret than the H-bomb was, right? So first of all they don't really like to publicize what's in their devices. But they make claims like "well the new iPhone has a 64 bit processor and it has 2X the general registers".

Jason: It's meaningless.

Scott: I don't want to get too complicated but that's so nonsensical and meaningless that it boggles the mind. But to the average person, they don't know. All they see is 2X and they go "it's faster! I want one!"

And they see it's the design. And of course it's also the much higher cost. I remember back in the days of the iBook there are a lot of tech sites, a lot of blogs and stuff where people are very anxious to get the latest i-gizmo and basically tear it apart. They call it a tear-down. And so at one of these sites they did a tear-down of an iBook. And one of the things you heard about the iBook, and Macs in general, was that the screens, the LCD screens or the colors they're so vibrant and the brightness and the contrast, it's so superior. And people parrot this stuff like non-stop. "Well I had to get it. I had to get this iBook because look how beautiful the screen is". Well okay.

So I read this read this tear-down and basically what they revealed was that I think it used an LCD panel from at the time it was Sharp or LG. There are 2 or 3 companies in the entire world that basically make LCD screens and every manufacturer including Apple uses a screen from one of these manufacturers. Sometimes they get higher resolution ones. Generally speaking, it's all the same technology. There's nothing brand new and fancy, but whatever. In the case of this iBook, what the tear-down revealed was a model number. And if you looked this model number up, what you found out was that it was a 7 bit, it's RGB so it's 7 bits per pixel, like 7 bits for red, 7 bits for green, 7 bits for blue. Normal high-color displays are 8 bits. Now you don't really have to understand what any of that means. All you have to know is that if you have one of these 7 bit displays, basically it is not physically capable of reproducing the same number of colors that an 8 bit screen does. And so essentially there were inexpensive laptops from Acer, Dell, and a bunch of manufacturers that used not only the same screen but better screens that cost far less money.

And so essentially what they often do, and this is not limited to LCD panels, is they take a component that is either the same or even inferior quality and they use their software and jack it up. I mean you can take any computer and you can jack up the vibrancy of the colors. You can make the color over-saturated. You can do that in software. There's a couple of different ways you can do it. And they essentially do this and then they say "Look how bright and vibrant it is". And what they're actually doing is they're selling you a computer with substandard parts and convincing you that they're great and that they're better. And you believe it and because you believe it, you have to justify your purchase, not just to yourself, but to everybody else.

Niall: Yeah, you start defending it.

Jason: Color experience is very subjective. And it has a lot to do with your eyes and it has a lot to do with adjacent colors. And basically what happens is when the Apple comes out, I've seen Apples, I didn't see much of an impressive color thing. They always harp on this whole art stuff and I went to art school and when I was in art school we worked on the G4, it was out at this time or something like that, and I wasn't impressed with the color and I still had problems with it because color, like Scottie and I were talking, color is very dependent on the printer as much as it is anything else. If your printer is shite and your printer doesn't print color well, the screen ain't got nothing to do with any of this stuff. So that being a selling point to me is kind of like a joke because they have picked the most subjective aspect to it. Everybody experiences color differently. You can't have two people in the room and bring them and say "Look at the colors on the screen" and they will still both have a different subjective experience.

Scott: It's especially ridiculous because there are standardized test. If you're shopping for a monitor, you can go crazy because I sometimes do. And you can look at all the specs and there are standardized tests for the different color of light emitted. They have all these fancy instruments they use to measure. And so there is kind of a more objective test of color. But the problem is that no two people really ever experience color in the same way. We all have different eyeballs. So what looks good to one person is not going to look good to another person. It is really a very subjective thing. The only exception I can think of is supposedly back in the early days of publishing, I think someone mentioned on our forum, in our Gurdjieff and Steve Jobs Documentary thread where someone first posted this video, I think someone mentioned that in the early days of desktop publishing and such, that people liked it a lot because they did a very good matching between the computer and the printer. There was a lot of tweaking they did so that what color you saw on the screen, when it was printed you'd see the exact same thing.

Jason: Twenty years ago.

Scott: Yeah.

Jason: The thing is some of these things were actually true when Apple first came out because they were ahead of the game. That lead was really quickly caught up and even surpassed. But because people are really sort of affect-oriented, meaning they're very emotional thinkers and once they start to believe something emotionally, they will continue to do so regardless of the evidence. And Apple has kind of exploited that, to maintain a small but very dedicated user base that constantly keeps giving them extremely large amounts of money. But when Apple says it has superior hardware, it's disingenuous. Apple, pretty much, ships with just about the same hardware that anyone else has access to because they buy it from the same company that everyone else goes to.

And that's a company in China called Foxconn, which is one of the evilest corporations manufacturing computers. It's basically a slave labor camp, working really 76 hours a week, working 11 days straight, and it's got a huge suicide rate. Of course people say "Well it's not as high as all the 50 states in the U.S." or something like that, yeah but it's one company. And this is one of the few companies that have to install nets to prevent people from killing themselves by jumping off the building. So it's got nets surrounding it to prevent people from committing suicide, probably trying to escape from their slave labor camp.

So that's disingenuous. Their hardware, maybe they get something that is kind of secret like Scottie talking about this A7 processor, but the majority of stuff that they ship is the same that you could get anywhere else in any other computer. You probably wouldn't because it's substandard because Foxconn doesn't necessarily make good stuff.

Niall: And yet their stuff is priced at the higher end.

Jason: Yeah. Basically for the same or less hardware, basically just double the price and then they will sell it.

Michael: For me, it seems when they strip that away, that everything that remains is a fancy user interface and the name Apple, right?

Jason: Yeah, basically. It's not really a fancy user interface. It looks to me like it's not so fancy. It's just a windows manager. And that's really all it is because when they went from Mac OS 9 and switched to OS X, the switch basically they took Unix - which is an open-source operating system which we're going to get to in a few minutes and we're going to talk about Dennis Ritchie who was behind Unix and the C-Language and all that stuff - Mac OS X is Unix gone retarded. So Apple doesn't even make an operating system anymore. So they can't even be compared to Windows in any way whatsoever. Because all they make is a windows manager on top of BFD, on top of basically the Unix operating system. And they managed to mess that up too. Whenever I talk to Mikey about it I'm always saying that Mac OS X is like Unix gone retarded, where they sort of take over what was all great about Unix and then you can't edit the configuration files and it moves stuff around all over the place. Even Mac users you talk to, they're like "I can't find the configuration file. It's so easy to set up on my server that's running regular Unix". But on Mac it takes it over, closes it off, and twists it around. Scottie has a story about his nightmare with the Samba configuration from that (Samba is the standard Windows interoperability suite of programs for Linux and Unix).

Scott: Yeah. I had a colleague at one point that had a Mac. And of course all the other machines in the place were Windows machines, not that Windows networking is the greatest don't get me wrong, it's a real pain sometimes but although he would read online on the Apple website that "sharing with Windows machines, no problem. It just works". I said "Okay, it just works". Well this particular Mac user, he didn't know how to actually make his sharing work with the Windows network so I had to go and do it. I very quickly discovered that actually it required me to go into the Samba configuration file and hack a lot of stuff. And I went on the internet and discovered that there were many, many, many people who had the same problem. They had to hack it as well.

Then you fast-forward a couple of years I was in another situation where I wanted this Mac with a later version of OSX, same situation, wanted the Mac to be able to read and write, share files with the other Windows machines on the network. And at that point they had done their thing where they had basically the configuration files, as Jason said, the Samba configuration file where you can normally go in and hack stuff, it's somehow protected, it's not editable and it's automatically generated by the OSX. So I did a search on that and no one knew how to get around it. Basically everyone who had this problem, they just kind of gave up and they said "Well I don't want to share files with Windows because it may soil my Mac".

Niall: I think you've given a more technical example of something I've noticed for myself and I think I see it in other people as well. So if I'm using Windows and I come across a problem, if I can't ask someone more knowledgeable for help, I'll troubleshoot. I'll Google, do a search, try and find out what the issue is and then it'll lead me eventually to a thread on a forum somewhere. Okay, "try and download this." I download it. Ah, it worked! Problem solved. Or maybe not, and I've got to try again. But in the course of doing that, you learn, right? You learn and your Windows is compatible. You can go to any number of places for solutions and you've added in some way to your own knowledge and your computer's ability to do whatever it was you were looking for. But with Apple, if somebody has a problem with their Mac, if they can't find a ready-made pre-packaged solution from Apple, they sort of surrender. They were made, it appears to me, so that people cannot get out of the Apple bubble once they're in it.

Jason: "If Apple doesn't support it, then it's not worth doing." When we were talking about, and we say that Apple is a closed system. And it's gotten even more closed actually, if that was even possible. There are situations like one of our colleagues is always talking about it. There's some sort of cloud service - don't even get me started on that - cloud service for Apple where you can share your pictures immediately with all these different people, but in order to even share photos with other people, you just have to have an Apple device. They won't even let you sign up for the service unless you have an iPod, iPhone, "I"-whatever, "I"-stupidity I have no idea, but it's ridiculous. It's a totally closed system. And it's a total lead to totalitarian, dictatorial system where it tells you what's worthwhile inside of the technology sphere.

Niall: And it strikes me that this goes against the very ethos of the original creators of the software, the hardware, computer technicians that made the internet itself. The whole ethos is diametrically opposed to what this guy's claiming that Gurdjieff and Steve Jobs is all about.

Michael: But it's still intentional by Steve Jobs because today I watched an interview from the 1990's where Steve Jobs said he invented Apple products to enable people who don't know how to use computers to use computers anyway. So that is one of the selling points, features of it. So what he's saying is true. And Windows at least you can go troubleshoot but in Apple you're not really encouraged to understand what's going on.

Jason: Yeah, you can see 180 degrees between Steve Jobs in 1990 and Steve Jobs in 2000 or whatever it was. It's a 180.

Niall: So you think it began with good intentions and then...

Jason: No, I think that in the 1980s and 90s the selling point was connecting people together and the selling point of the "me" generation really got kicked into gear and it's all about me, me, me and taking care of me and I don't want to have to be intelligent. I don't want to have to learn about anything. I don't want to have to do anything. I want everything done for me. I want to be told what games to play, what programs to use, what videos to watch and all I want to do is consume video, multi-media content and games. And that's really what Apple and all of this stuff is really about. It's about consuming multi-media content and games. Because that's really all that the Mac is really good for. It's a substandard development platform to be quite honest.

Michael: It's an angry bird machine.

Jason: It's an angry bird machine. It's for - basically "I want to take pictures with my iPhone of me and my friends going out to do whatever it is that we do and then I want to share those". Just think about all of the work and effort and technology that goes into basically facilitating people to just share photos. It's really kind of insane.

Michael: It's ridiculous when you have these iPads which are quite large and people use them to take pictures of landscape and sightseeing and so on. They actually don't look themselves at the sights. They just look into the iPad, take videos and never see the actual scene themselves.

Jason: Yeah. They see the entire world through their "I"-devices.

Niall: I have here a text from someone actually, it was published in the Times of India recently:
"So at first I thought it was my imagination. Around the time the iPhone 5S and 5C were released (I think that was a few months ago), yes, September, I noticed that my sad old iPhone 4 was becoming a lot more sluggish. The battery was starting to run down much faster. But the same thing seemed to be happening to a lot of people who, like me, swear by their Apple products. When I called tech analysts, they said that the new operating system IOS 7 being pushed out to existing users was making older models unbearably slow. Apple phone batteries, which have a finite number of charges in them to begin with, were drained by the new software. So I could pay Apple $79 to replace the battery or perhaps spend 20 bucks more for an iPhone 5C. It seemed like Apple was sending me a not-so-subtle message to upgrade. This isn't the first time that tech analysts have noted that breakdowns in older Apple products often coincide when upgrades come out to the market, taking this as evidence of planned obsolescence, a term that dates to the Great Depression. Now what is planned obsolescence? In industrial design, this is a policy of planning or designing a product deliberately with a limited useful shelf life so that it will become obsolete, that is, unfashionable or no longer functional after a certain period of time."
Jason: In order to insure that people will buy the new next thing.

Niall: And they're so brazen.

Jason: Yeah, they are.

Niall: They make no bones about it. You call for tech support and they say, "Well you can buy the new one or..."

Jason: Yeah, pretty much.

Niall: Because...

Jason: And I'm sure that they intentionally wrote the system in such a way that it would detect that it's running on an older system and it would probably just start some random processes that would just run the battery down or something. It's a very trivial thing to do.

Niall: It's like GMOs, built-in terminator seeds.

Jason: Right, yeah.

Niall: You cannot replant, "steal", seeds for next year's harvest. You need to get the iPhone 17.

Jason: As you go through life you begin to learn that the largest number of pedophiles will always be found in anti-pedophile organizations. The largest number of human rights violators will be found supporting or advocating human rights, as we learn quite often. And the people who talk the most about creating technologies of liberation or technologies of freedom are the ones who are actually trying to take it away. And that's what you see with Apple. They promote themselves on a platform of liberating and connecting people, but actually what they're doing is they are enslaving them.

Michael: The new iPhone has a fingerprint scanner. That means every time you have to turn it on, your fingerprint is scanned.

Jason: Which I guess is - that's great! {chuckles sarcastically}

Niall: Yeah, I've got another line here: "Apple iPhone 5S Big Brother Dream Come True. Fingerprint, eye retina scans." The NSA is very happy. Seriously, it's the very opposite to this image they project of - well you mentioned earlier that invariably you get artists and hippy types and people who are hip, they're "in", they know the social issues.

Jason: Well people who think they are. It's a 'Dunning-Kruger effect' situation.

Niall: Yeah, and yet, as pointed out, iPhones are made by slave labor, just like the other ones, made in China.

Jason: But the thing is, when you use technology period, as a general rule, it has been orchestrated to the fact that you cannot help but support that type of situation. It's all made in China and all made by slave labor at this point. There's almost no way around it. There's no cell phone company that you can go to and, we're going to get to, Samsung isn't any better. Google's Android isn't any better. This stuff isn't better. It's like you look at the situation and it's not even a question of a lesser of two evils. It's like two evils and as long as you go into it with your eyes open and realize that you're evil and you're evil and I'm screwed basically. But it's these people who come on and they say "I choose Apple products because of X. I don't use Windows because they're an evil corporation". Windows is an evil corporation, absolute 100%. It's a shitty operating system, absolutely 100% in the grand scheme of things. But you want to know what? Mac OS X, shitty operating system and evil corporation and it's just that simple. They're all evil. And the problem that I generally have with Apple users is not that Apple is better or worse specifically, it's that these people are going around "Apple is so much better. Apple's good. They're good. They're different than Microsoft".

Niall: They have that texture. It feels good.

Jason: Yeah.

Niall: By way of introduction to other unsung heroes in the techie world, I find it interesting that - somebody pointed out in our forum thread that the same week or the week after Steve Jobs died someone else, a guy called Dennis Ritchie.

Jason: Bet you don't know who he is.

Niall: I don't know who he is. Who's Dennis Ritchie?

Jason: He is the architect.

Niall: Of the Matrix?

Jason: He is the maker in ways that you probably would never really understand.

Niall: Try. Teach me!

Jason: He was involved in Unix. Now this is back in the days before Apple and before Microsoft and any of that stuff.

Michael: Steve Jobs was 12 years old.

Jason: Steve Jobs was 12 years old and there was MIT, Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Bell Labs.

And at that time basically when computers were shipped of course they were huge and as big as a room, but they were not shipped with an operating system or any software whatsoever. You had to write your own. And a couple of different companies had come up and started making different operating systems and trying to sell them. They would give you the source code, people would have to compile it for the machine and do all this different stuff. But then people started sharing it and the companies were like "no, they're taking our pennies" and so they started closing it off. So Dennis Ritchie, Ken Thompson, I think a couple of other guys, got together and they started making this thing called Multics which is the multiplex timeshare operating system and then that kind of fell through. And then they went off and they came up with Unix basically, which was an operating system that was generally going to be able to run on a lot of different machines. And in order to do this, they needed to stop programming them in machine code or assembly language, which is very, very low level. It's like each instruction is one line. So they created the C programming language, which is the basic underpinning of absolutely everything that you use, is written. And if it's not written in C, whatever you're language you're writing in, was written in C.

Niall: It's derived from it?

Jason: Yeah, basically. Almost all major programming languages right now that are popular in use, from Java and anything like that, they are called the C family of languages because their syntax basically mirrors C. So he created the language that we use to express all of the wonderful programs that we like to use. And he also created the first real operating systems as we really understand them, which is this code that runs on different kind of hardware and stuff. So he really kind of made all of this possible.

Michael: And it's so sad because it was just within a few days and compared to Wikipedia pages of Steve Jobs and Dennis Ritchie, and Steve Jobs' Wikipedia page is huge. There's like 300 or 400 citations at the end. And Dennis Ritchie's Wikipedia entry is very short, like one page. And nobody mentioned him.

Scott: To really understand the significance of C, the programming language, and Dennis Ritchie's contribution to technology in general, whether it's used for good or bad that's another question entirely, but just in terms of comparing, given that Steve Jobs and Dennis Ritchie died the same month, Steve Jobs is hailed as this hero and then you have Dennis Ritchie who nobody even knows who he is. When we say that C programming is used for everything, what that means is that if you have a washing machine that has electronic controls on it, most likely the software that makes it go is written in C. Most likely so is the engine computer that runs your car or perhaps your fancy electronic coffee pot, your smart phone, and, of course, your computer.

Jason: Everything.

Michael: Everything.

Scott: And literally the equipment that runs the telecommunications network when you want to make a phone call, the routers and switches, and airplanes fly because of C, more or less. It's literally any technology that involves electronics that's more than a passive device like an electric fan motor running. If it's anything electronically controlled, which these days is literally everything, is essentially possible because of this guy who made this C language, for better or for worse, but there you go.

Jason: And how much money do you pay to Dennis Ritchie for C?

Niall: I don't even know who he is, so I guess zero.

Jason: Yeah, and this guy died alone in a little dinky place and nobody knows him, because he just did it and gave it and Unix is historically been kind of like this free open-source thing. And that whole movement, that whole possibility of the new and Richard Stallman's free software and all this different stuff, is made possible because of C. But here's one other thing, when you install Java, because there's probably a couple of hundred Java programmers listening, when you install a Java, Java runs on a virtual machine. Guess what that virtual machine was probably written in?

Niall: C?

Jason: Yeah. "Java's on three billion devices" is like "Yeah, so is C, it's on more."

Michael: And even more absurd is that Apple users think they're better in some respects, but that's with this aspect in mind.

Jason: Yeah, they talk about Mac OS X basically took Unix as their operating system. So then it's like a double insult for Steve Jobs to get more credit because basically taking the Unix kernel...

Michael: BSD.

Jason: BSD kernel, the Berkeley Standard Distribution or something like that, of Linux, which is the Berkeley school version of Unix, taking that pretty much did help to save Apple and get them away from having to maintain their own operating system because that basically meant that they got to leverage the open-source community of volunteers, people who volunteered their time to develop this stuff, they got to take all their work and all they had to do is put a shiny cover on top of it and call it their own. Mac OS X is just Unix gone retarded. I mean, all they've done is basically put pictures on top of Unix and then sold it kind of as their own. And Dennis Ritchie, having been the creator and being involved in that whole situation, is made all the worse because Apple and everything that everyone says about "I love Mac because it doesn't get viruses", guess who's responsible for that? Dennis Ritchie because it's not that Mac doesn't get viruses because it's intrinsically immune to them. There are such things. It's just because they have such a small market share that none of the - because viruses are for the most part produced by the companies that make the anti-virus software. There are too many viruses in the world to actually be written. And they're too cleverly designed. Norton probably writes more viruses than any greasy-haired Canadian kid could ever hope to.

Niall: Jason, that sounds like a conspiracy.

Jason: Well it's the truth! Because I just think that if I started an anti-virus corporation I'd realize there just aren't enough greasy-head Canadian kids. I would just have to supplement. It would be innocent. First they would say "Well there haven't been enough viruses here. Let's write a couple ourselves" and then bam. It's turned into a giant multi-million dollar industry and yeah, cui bono man, cui bono?

Niall: Speaking of bono, bonehead, Bono the musician. Put up to a photo-op with George Bush to sort of ritually cleanse Bush of all his war crimes. And then of course there's a similar photo of him with Steve Jobs and I just think it's an extraordinarily successful marketing campaign. That's all it is.

Jason: The thing is, is that your soul in a certain sense, is really destroyed by every lie you believe. Every time you kind of believe a lie, it kind of chips a little bit away from your soul. And there are a lot of people who go through life and it's not just big lies. People are always looking for the big lie, right? At the same time they are drowning in little ones. And it's every time that you go with something completely untrue it's really bad for you in the long run. And believing that Steve Jobs is anything other than a clever, psychopathic salesman is basically destroying your soul. And I mean it really is.

Michael: So, when you compare that with the popular image, a computer being a car for example, then the operating system would be the engine.

Jason: Yeah.

Michael: And what you can actually see on the screen would be the dashboard.

Jason: Right.

Michael: So when they're just creating a nice little dashboard, then there's all this argumentation about what is better, is just arguing about a nice dashboard.

Jason: Yeah.

Michael: Whereas people don't notice what's actually going on behind the scenes.

Jason: Yeah, and it's worse than that. To use the car analogy, there's the guy on YouTube who used the car analogy as well in another way. He was talking about Apple. And to give you an example of how Apple kind of works, Apple kind of has this absolute tight control over absolutely everything they connect with. They have their own cords, their own things, blah, blah, blah. You have to buy Apple products to connect Apple products. It's very closed.

Michael: You have to buy Apple products to view pictures in the internet that have been made by Apple products.

Jason: Yeah. Just to connect to their website. So it would basically be like the Ford company coming along and buying Firestone tire makers and then making it so you could only use Firestone tires on every Ford company, doubling up, jacking up the price of Firestone tires and then getting laws and all this different stuff and patents put into place so that if anyone tried to make a tire fit to a Ford they would sue your ass. This is the corporation that you support! They are the worst! They are worse than Microsoft. They are worse than any other company when it comes to that particular thing. They sued Samsung for billions of dollars. And one of the patents that they were claiming they infringed on was the slide to unlock, that little thing on the iPhone, that slide to unlock. They patented that. It's ridiculous. The patents system is definitely broken at that point. And then some anti-Samsung and pro-Apple guy who was on the jury and later it was kind of like proved and shown that he was an interested little psychopathic guy awarded them a billion dollars. It's ridiculous stuff that this company does, so horrible.

Niall: So we've done this tear-down on Apple, right?

Jason: Right.

Niall: And we've got this guy we opened our show with talking about the innovations and the inspiration that Apple brings. We've pretty much shown that to be untrue. Now, there might be something nevertheless to that, because what do we see when we look out there today at information technology in general? People are imitating Apple.

Jason: Yeah, that's the problem.

Scott: Well actually in some ways they are, in some ways they're not. For example, Apple is very good at popularizing certain things. Like before the iPod came along, a company Creative, used to be called Creative Labs now I think they're just called Creative, had a device called the Nomad. You remember in the olden days - this is funny, I sound and I feel old - in the olden days they had these things called the Disc Man which was like a portable compact disc player and you'd see people jogging and they had this big giant, looked like a big disc attached to their arm and it was a CD player, right, a portable CD player. Well Creative came up with this thing called the Nomad and what it was, was basically a portable CD player, but instead of playing music CDs, it had a hard drive in it. And it had a little screen on it and it had buttons and you'd press. It was essentially an iPod and there were lots of other companies that made MP3 players.

At that time nobody wanted an MP3 player. It was like "Well I don't need one. I have my ole Disc Man. I have my own little Walkman", the portable tape player. Nobody really cared. And then Apple decided to make the iPod. Suddenly it was cool to have an iPod. You had to have those little white ear buds sticking out of your ear when you're sitting on the subway, you know. And then because everybody wanted one and because of their marketing campaign and because they literally convinced everyone that their lives would not be complete without one of these little electronic gizmos attached to their ears, all these other companies said "Yeah, we're going to make them too". And the thing is then Apple says "Yeah, but we came up with the iPod and we're the ones you're copying now". Well, not really. The idea wasn't even original. Maybe the specific implementation of the idea was original, but then did it become popular because it really improved peoples' lives or was it popular because of a slick marketing campaign a la Edward Bernays and that whole thing?

Jason: Yeah.

Scott: And the same thing happened with the iPhone. A lot of companies made smart phones. Remember those little Nokia phones, some people still have them. And it was just a little tiny screen and it had buttons on it and you want to know what it did? It made phone calls. And that's pretty much all it did. And there were these various companies, they made these so-called smart phones with the big screen and essentially a smart phone is basically a phone that kind of also doubles as a sort of portable computer. And it can do other stuff easily. It's far more flexible. You can do email, much more easily, right? Other companies were making these things and then Apple popularized basically "well it's the iPhone" and suddenly everybody wants a smart phone. And then Samsung said "Well hey we want a piece of that action! So we're going to jack up" and now I read techie news Samsung releases a new smart phone like every week. They have the Galaxy S4, the Galaxy S4 mini, the Galaxy GOS4 mini. And they have so many different phones it's actually stupid. You don't even need to have that many models. But now they're just cranking them out hand-over-fist.

But you go to any major city - this is the part that really drives me nuts about the whole, well one of the things that drives me nuts - is that you can't go to, not even major cities, even small cities and you go on a bus or a train or a subway and it's like the image we have on the BlogTalk Radio page for this episode, one of the images is basically a bunch of teenagers walking along a sidewalk and they're all staring at their smart phones, you know. And people used to actually get together and they'd eat dinner together and they'd go sit out on the porch and they'd talk like real human beings. And all of that has been substituted by...

Jason: Texting.

Scott: Texting and Facebook and Twitter. And people don't even interact with each other anymore. And if that's the result of Steve Jobs legacy, no thank you.

Jason: It goes so far that people don't even have sex anymore. They have sexting now.

Scott: Oh yeah?

Jason: It's gone really far. The human race is going to die out because everybody is going to be having sexting instead of sex. It's insane what has happened in a certain sense.

Niall: Yeah.

Jason: I don't get it. I don't. I'm not into that kind of tech stuff. I have a smart phone. I use it as an alarm clock. I don't even carry it around with me. I don't like it.

Niall: Yeah, I have one and I hardly use it. If I've got to make a call, sure, but if I can use a land line I'll just use that. And in terms of personal computer use, I just want to use the computer and then I want to be done with it. I don't want the Matrix or whatever to follow me around all the time. Now you've got a situation where you leave your desktop and you go and sit down on the sofa and you've got your iPad, just for doing some browsing or Tweeting or Facebooking, that's what I use that for. But you were just on the internet a minute ago doing exactly the same thing anyway.

Jason: The degradation of the language. Add Tweeting and Facebooking. Oh my god, it's so horrifying. Facebook is this pointless situation. It's completely pointless. And Tweeting, all Tweeting has basically established is how boring everyone else's life is. Because when you get to see what they're doing every five minutes you realize "Wow dude you have no life."

Scott: First people used to actually get together and they would talk and socialize like normal human beings are supposed to do. Then it became well, everybody's calling each other on the phone. Well that's still pretty good because it's not face-to-face interaction, but at least your talking to a person in real time and there's some interaction still, even if it's slightly removed from real human interaction. And now people contact me on Facebook. They use Facebook's messaging service to send me a message like "Hey how you doing, blah, blah, blah". It's literally two sentences. And it used to be if someone wanted to talk to you they would send you an email. Of course if you're going to take the trouble to send someone an email you might as well actually talk about your life, ask them how they're doing. And now it's gotten to the point where it's literally like human society as a whole has become like a race of Tweeters, like Twitter, like posting these short little blurbs. It's just maddening!

Niall: Yeah, it's a consumer society. It's like the extreme form of what is described in that documentary Century of the Self where they look back at the beginning of the consumer society, early 20th century, when Edward Bernays' nephew Sigmund Freud, basically invented public relations and advertising as we know it. You sort of tap into, well the way they framed it anyway, you tap into peoples' unconscious desires and give them stuff, or get them to think they need something.

Scott: Yeah.

Niall: And then produce the material goods.

Scott: It used to be that people actually needed a product, like "I and my family are roasting in the middle of the summer, so I need this fan." So I go to the store and I buy a fan and I may pay some big bucks for it, but that fan will literally last 50 years. And then it became, with Edward Bernays and the whole modern marketing, it was not about what you needed. It wasn't about basic needs. It wasn't even about comfort. It's like "I have to have that car because it makes me a real man".

Niall: Yeah.

Scott: I should look up the title of this book. There's a book on Edward Bernays that's very, very good.

Michael: When they spend money on something that they don't really need, then you make all of these narratives to rectify, to invent reasons why you bought it in the first place even though you don't need it.

Niall: Exactly.

Scott: The book that everybody should read, if you haven't read it yet, is called Propaganda by Edward Bernays and Mark Crispin Miller. Just get it and read it. It's called Propaganda. You can get it on Amazon and then it'll all make sense.

Niall: Yeah. Just by way of an example of the kind of mentality that seems to have grown - this isn't just about Apple of course, it's not just about any one company - but I had a boss who swore by Mac. She wasn't religious in any way, but she had this devout belief that PCs were evil, you know, regular computer, using Windows or any other operating system. In fact when I joined the company she gave me a Mac book and said "All company work must be done on this". And her idea of rewarding people was to give us iPads. Now she was also very anti-smoking, ruthlessly committed to saving the planet, in words if not in deed. And I'm only adding that here because it puts in stark contrast the kind of - I mean Jobs himself is portrayed as a hippy, he was big into yoga.

Jason: Fruitarian.

Niall: He was a fruitarian, that's an extreme form of the vegetarian diet - it goes with this whole green image that is in stark contrast to its results. It was actually an extremely ruthless business model.

Jason: Right.

Niall: That took the exploitation of labor of people to an even worse degree.

Jason: Well Steve Jobs in that sense, he killed himself, in a certain sense because when Ashton Kutcher tried it for doing this movie, when he did this movie about him, tried the fruitarian diet and ended up in the hospital with pancreas problems. And you can see from like 10 years how he aged and shrunk and shriveled on this kind of fruitarian, green kind of thing. And there is something actually kind of dark and implosive and entropic about those types of people. They have this veneer of saving the planet but really they're trying to, in a certain sense, destroy it. Especially if you read the Vegetarian Myth and you'll see that under it all is this very sly anti-life philosophy and a total narcissistic perspective because these types of people have basically raised themselves outside of nature and want to live unnaturally and think that they know what is best for the world, and nature, basically, they're telling Nature how to act. You should eat vegetables because eating animals is mean. The history of nature is written in tooth and claw. Do you think that Nature didn't know what she was doing when she created predators and lions?

Michael: If you just google Steve Jobs, the last interview of 1990, and he's 35 years in this interview and he's looking perfectly healthy, radiating everything. Then just 10 years later, you can see like a different person.

Jason: Yeah he aged 20 years in 10.

Michael: And died at 56.

Jason: And died at 56.

Scott: Well that's interesting he aged rapidly because, isn't that what we remarked on an earlier show about how all these politicians seem to age at a dramatically rapid rate?

Jason: It's when you turn evil.

Michael: Taxes the body.

Jason: It taxes the body. I think he sold his soul to get back in control of Apple. They kicked him out because they recognized what he was. He sold his soul for it, and he paid the price.

Scott: And that's not to say - obviously this show is kind of focusing on Apple because the title of the document Gurdjieff and Steve Jobs, that's kind of what set it off. It's very clear and I've used Macs before in a work situation and I've had to use them a little bit in non-work situations. I've used Windows. I still use Windows. I have and still use Linux, various flavors. It's not just Apple that's the problem. Apple may have popularized certain things like MP3 players and phones and they really helped to make technology cool. You actually owning some piece of technology it's not just a status symbol, it's almost like the Holy Grail or something.

Jason: Right.

Scott: And the same is true of all these other devices from other companies. Jason mentioned Samsung. In terms of annual revenues, Samsung is about 33 percent higher than Apple even. They have 371,000 employees. They make literally everything. They make apparels, chemicals, consumer electronics, electronic components, medical equipment, precision instruments, semi-conductors, ships as in like drilling ships and oil tankers and now they're making a cruise ship, that's like Samsung heavy industries, they make telecom equipment, laptops, hard drives, flash memory, and smart phones. It's like they have a theme park in South Korea owned by Samsung. Samsung is like this massive corporation. I was reading about this it reminded me of the Weyland-Yutani Corporation for the Aliens movies. I expect to wake up tomorrow and discover that Samsung has purchased all the world governments. I look at this and I go "Well giant corporation, Apple or not".

Michael: It's the same with Windows and even Linux. You can fall into the trap of seeing as a fashion. I just want to read a very short quote from Gurdjieff because the original video mentioned that Gurdjieff actually would have been an Apple fan. But Gurdjieff says:

"The majority of the contemporary beings have in the present a very strange need to evoke in others what is called astonishment regarding themselves or even think they see it on the faces of those around. The strangeness of this need of theirs lies in this, that they get satisfaction from the astonishment on the part of others regarding just their exterior appearance which they have precisely in conformity with their passions."

So everything seems to rotate around exterior appearances and that is the core of the problem.

Jason: Yeah, basically, yeah. Apple is all about the image, the Apple image that they project. It's a fashion.

Niall: Jason, you mentioned Foxconn earlier. Just for listeners, Foxconn is a Chinese company.

Jason: Foxconn is a Chinese company. They call it Hon Hai Precision Industries Limited.

Niall: Apple got the flack when this broke last year I think, that most, if not all of their products were being made by this company. People were working 11 days straight, 76 hours a week for nothing, committing suicide.

Jason: Yeah, basically.

Niall: But Apple isn't the only company.

Jason: No. Everybody goes to them pretty much.

Niall: Yeah.

Scott: Foxconn is actually, according to Wikipedia, is actually Taiwan-based.

Jason: Yeah, it's a Taiwanese company.

Scott: They have, so get this, Apple has 76,000 employees. Foxconn has 1.2 million employees. So Foxconn is like one of these huge companies and it's basically like we often refer to it as cheap Chinese slave labor.

Jason: Right.

Scott: That's literally what it is. Its slave labor and they are the ones who you buy a gizmo. The gizmo might be designed in California or Korea or wherever, but it's the design and all these different parameters and specifications and such, are sent to Foxconn. They manufacture it. Most of the time they assemble it for literally peanuts and then they assemble it, package them up in bulk, ship them over to the U.S. or Europe or wherever, and sell them for an exorbitant amount of money.

Jason: I don't necessarily want to pull this back to Apple, but just for a quick thing. Apple sends itself the platform of "yeah, we're doing all this different stuff". Apple is like an advertising agency. And they have a couple of guys and they draw pictures of something they want. They don't probably even make prototypes anymore. I mean they send pictures of what they want it to look like. Foxconn says "Okay, well we have 15 million of this board and 15 million blah, blah, blah, of this chip" and all this different stuff on the screen. And they put it all together, send a prototype and Steve Jobs clicks around in it and says "Yeah, this is good" and sends it back to them and they make it. Apple is just a giant ad agency at this point. Foxconn even does prototypes. This is an original design manufacturer. These guys probably just get pictures and then their engineers, their slave engineers that they're beating the whip over probably actually figure out how to put all of it together in the majority of cases. And everybody goes to them. It's not just Apple who goes to them. They manufacture probably just about a little bit of everything. I'm sure HP gets stuff from Foxconn. I'm sure that the Lenovo Group and even Asus probably get equipment and stuff from Foxconn.

Scott: Pretty much everybody.

Jason: Pretty much everybody.

Scott: I think there are a couple of other companies. Foxconn was one of the...

Jason: It's one of the big ones.

Scott: One of the big ones.

Jason: So it's really disingenuous for even people to be like "I'm an Apple user because Apple has superior hardware". No, Apple has the same hardware as everybody else. They just charge more for it. It's all the same. It's all coming from the same place. It's all created and manufactured and assembled by the same people. It's just who drew the pictures? Did Asus draw the pictures or did Apple draw the pictures? That's really what it comes down to.

Niall: Yeah. So they charge higher prices for the same or worse goods. They don't pay people who actually manufacture the things or anything. And I've got a story here Apple Avoids Paying Billions in Worldwide Tax.

Jason: Yeah.

Niall: Of course they all do, but somebody pointed out here, "in fact former executives say Apple has been particularly talented at identifying legal tax loopholes."

Jason: Yeah.

Niall: Their motive being well their profits come in so thick and fast.

Jason: So they have an office in Reno basically, because Reno has a zero percent corporation tax or something like that. And they have offices in the Virgin Islands or whatever it is. So yeah, like every single person are going around being 'the taxes, it sucks so bad' and all this different stuff. And these companies here, these are the worst offenders in tax evasion and completely legally. Because of course they pay the lobbyists in Washington to get the laws and the loopholes written in and stuff like that. So it's nothing more than you'd expect. You can't help but support them monetarily because you literally cannot buy anything without supporting these companies because they have their fingers in every pie, basically because they have this Brandenburg Capital Holdings or whatever it is. These guys, they get together and they have these holding companies that then buy everything else. You can't help but see the money. But the worst thing is when you think that you're not. That's the whole thing. When you think that you're not feeding into that evil system, and you think that you're doing good when you're actually just doing worse. That's the really bad thing because it's like Scottie was saying, it's the way the Yutani Corporation is Samsung. But really, even Samsung is probably - these guys, they're so huge. They've got their fingers in every pie. You can't put a coin in a coin meter on the street without giving some kind of money to one of these evil people.

Niall: Yeah, for the longest time that was Microsoft.

Jason: Microsoft was never that evil. That was an advertising campaign from Apple and it was completely disingenuous.

Niall: What was?

Jason: This whole...

Niall: Microsoft is evil.

Jason: This whole Microsoft is evil stuff.

Michael: Well Bill Gates at least was a programmer in the beginning.

Jason: First of all, generally speaking when you talk about computer programming, there is sort of like the arcane arch mage level of computer programming which is if you've implemented your own compiler or your own program language, right, that's like you're a programming guru at that point. It's the ultimate street cred. That's like the equivalent of a rapper for killing somebody or something like that, for modern rap. That is the ultimate. And Bill Gates is up there. Even Steve Jobs bought the Basic 1.0 from Microsoft that he and I forget who else was working on it?

Scott: Yeah, and I think Bill Gates did his own buying of things. He wasn't exactly a saint.

Jason: Sure.

Scott: But at least the man actually understood something and contributed something himself rather than being a glorified salesman. Now that doesn't mean that Microsoft is some holy corporation and "oh we all love Microsoft". For me, at the end of the day, I have a computer and it runs Windows and I have several virtual machines with other operating systems because booting between multiple operating systems is a pain and everyone around me uses Windows. All the tools I need are available on Windows. I have a way to get Windows relatively cheaply that's perfectly legal. So it fits. But at the end of the day, to me it's like a tool. I wouldn't go out to the workshop and pick up a cordless drill and go "This cordless drill, it's changed my life. Look at the glossy finish and did you know that this drill has..." and start rattling off all these specifications that have nothing to do with reality, because it's just a tool. You make holes with it. You drive screws into a piece of wood. And to me, that's kind of what a computer is. And yes, I may go "oh, my laptop's slow. I'd like a new one". But at the end of the day, it's just a damn tool.

Jason: Which, by the way, I would like to point out that the Apple keyboard gets dirty so quick, so quick. It's like, I don't think these people actually use that computer for anything because it just gets so gunged up so quick.

Scott: So the question then is what is it about, especially the whole Apple thing, what is it psychologically? I was kind of ranting a little bit about the whole people not talking to each other and not socializing and it's like technology is supposed to make our lives better and in some senses it does, but in probably the majority of ways today technology is not actually making humanity better per se. It's a source of control.

Niall: Well just look around. The results are worse.

Michael: Plus all the knowledge available today, think Wikipedia, it's all stored on very sensitive equipment. So for coming generations, if something happens, all of this will be lost and unless we put everything into stone, it's going to be finished.

Niall: Fear not Mikey because the NSA is recording all of this data.

Scott: They've got copies of everything. Don't worry. I'm sure they'll be willing to share. One of the readers on the thread on our forum about this Gurdjieff and Steve Jobs video again, another reader posted a link to the website And this is the website by the author David McRaney who wrote a book called You Are Not So Smart which is also an excellent book and one that everybody needs to read probably before you read propaganda by Edward Bernays. I have a few quotes and I was re-reading this earlier today and for me it sort of really kind of cemented everything and made it perfectly clear. So McRaney writes that:

"The misconception is that you prefer the things you own over the things you don't because you made rational choices when you bought them. The truth is that you prefer the things you own because you rationalize your past choices to protect your sense of self."

And then he goes on. He talks about fanboyism, it's nothing new. He talks about the Quaker Oats Company. Back in 1877 Quaker Oats put a friendly logo on their burlap sacks. As he says there was no friendly Quaker family making the oats. The company wanted to associate trustworthiness and honesty of Quakers with their product. And it worked. Everybody bought it so even way back then, this whole marketing thing was alive and well. And he kind of goes on and it's a really interesting excerpt, but I'll just sort of abbreviate a little bit. A couple of the most important points that he makes he writes that:

"In experiments at Baylor University people were given Coke and Pepsi in large cups and then hooked up to a brain scanner. The device clearly showed a certain number of them preferred Pepsi while tasting it. When those people were told they were drinking Pepsi, a fraction of them, the ones who had enjoyed Coke all their lives, did something unexpected. The scanners showed their brains scrambling the pleasure signals, dampening them. They then told the experimenter afterward that they had preferred Coke in its tests."

So basically I like Coke all my life, right?

Jason: Yeah.

Scott: And I go and I do this blind taste test. And I drink Pepsi and I go "oooh, that one's yummier". And then the experimenter, the guy, he tells me "no, actually that's not Coke you just drank, that's actually Pepsi." So he continues:

"In other words they lied, but in their subjective experiences of the situation they didn't. They really did feel like they preferred Coke after it was all over. And they altered their memories to match their emotions."

Now just stop and think about that for a minute.

Jason: And that's what you observe all the time, especially with Mac users, is that they just lie about their experience. They lie to you. They say "Oh, it's so much better".

Niall: But it never crashes.

Jason: It does. They have the pinwheel of doom. It's just like the blue screen of death.

Scott: Yeah, and he even goes on and he says one of the factors in this emotional attachment is how much money you spend on something. And he says "It's the choosing one thing over another which leads to narratives about why you did it." So you think of the whole emotional investment that, especially it's true of people who buy all kinds of products, it's true of people who buy cars, when people are voting for or cheering for their favorite sports team, it's all basically the same concept. But in the case of Apple especially, this is kind of where we started off, one of the techniques that they use is to take either standard or sub-par hardware as we've already laid out, and they package it up and they charge you 2 or 3 times as much money for it. So they have the whole slick marketing campaign, and then they make you pay too much money for it which just cements it in your mind that no this thing really has changed my life. It really is easier. It really is better.

Niall: It's an extreme form of identification. Money will always help to grease the wheels, but it's the marketing as well that identifies the "I".

Jason: It's an extreme form of actual mind programming.

Niall: Well yeah, this is where it's going, isn't it?

Jason: In a study Cialdini writes about the prisoners of war from the Korean War, and these guys came back and they were all pro-communism or whatever it is. And of course Americans just couldn't handle that so they were like "They brainwashed them. It must have been horrible". So they did a study on what they did. And what they found that they did was they put these guys all together in bad conditions. And then what they would do is they'd have essay contests. This is the weirdest thing, they'd have essay contests. And the winner of the essay contest would receive something like a piece of fruit or whatever it is. And they didn't even have to write this. They just had to copy it over.

And what they found basically is that when you give people this kind of situation, you put them in this horrible situation and you give them a reward or something like that, they automatically have to create in their mind, because the advantage is really a small advantage, that they can't justify it to their friends that they wrote a pro-communist essay. So they'd say "Well, actually communism isn't that bad". They'd change the way that they think about things to justify the choices that they've made. And that's how they brainwash. They didn't beat anybody. There was no electroshock going on. They didn't torture anybody into believing any of that stuff. It was just basically you get a person to make a choice and expend an effort, and put them in a situation where they have to justify it to other people. Because if you say "I got a Mac and I paid 2,800 bucks for a Mac of the exact same power that a PC sells for 800 bucks so basically I just spent $2,000 more than I should have because I bought into it, then they're going to have to rewire their brain to justify it to themselves. "Oh, it's so much better, blah, blah, blah." And that's just how they do it. It's just mind programming.

Scott: Yeah. I had read the book before and I had read the excerpt before. And I read it again earlier today before the show and I nearly fell off my chair because I don't think the first time it really hit me that when he says that they really did feel like they preferred Coke after it was all over and they altered their memories to match their emotions. How many of us have actually experienced this in other realms of our lives where you remember some traumatic event or something and the other person who was the cause of this issue or whatever says "That never happened. No, no. You're crazy. That's totally wrong." Well, no!

Michael: And they're helping it because with every product you get those stickers with the Apple logo on it and friends of mine, they have those stickers all over the place, on the coffee machine, and on the PC even.

Jason: They cover up the logo of the PC with the Apple.

Scott: Does it imbue it with magical powers or does it...?

Niall: I've seen people get haircuts with the Apple logo.

Jason: Oh, Jesus Christ!

Niall: Tattoos.

Scott: Have you ever seen someone with a Windows tattoo or a Windows logo cut in their hair? People would just laugh at them, you know.

Jason: Yeah.

Scott: Or an Ubuntu logo or something? That's absurd.

Michael: Because it's recognized by friends, right?

Niall: This got me to thinking, you know how for decades now - we are kind of there technologically speaking - a lot of people have been paranoid about the end game of the conspiracies, namely that it is to implant the entire global population with a microchip device that will control their thoughts, actions, be able to pinpoint their location, etc. etc. This kind of technology does exist and it's out there to some degree or another and people get implanted with a chip in the military, retirees in old peoples' homes perhaps, other institutions, and hospitals. But it struck me that they're afraid and they're waiting for this hellish scenario.

Jason: They're buying iPhones which have the chip in it.

Niall: And in the meantime they're walking around with five devices that do all of that and more.

Michael: So it's no longer necessary to implant people.

Niall: Because they're being entrained full-time by the devices, the devices that they're so identified with it that their whole life is lived through it. And this in turn will have an effect on the way they think. It's not a one-way system here. The information is going two ways. It's changing the way people think.

Jason: Yeah, people think that for instance the NSA or the CIA have this hacking room of these super smartest guys ever and they can hack your computer and they know how to do all this different stuff and you know what? They don't at all. They go out, find some smart kid and they say "Well fund your company, make this game" and they get you to install the programs that track you. They don't have special programs to track you. They let you install it. It's the games that you buy. It's the operating systems. It's whatever. They've got control of all that stuff. They just back it with money. They get you. It's the Trojan horse thing. The people of Troy brought the horse in. It was like "Here's a gift. Don't you want it?" And they're like "Oh yeah, we like that. That's nice. It fits with our ego". And then you bring it in. They're not going to forcefully install any chips in anybody. If that ever comes to that, people will ask for the chips to be installed. They will be lining up, sleeping on the sidewalk outside of Best Buy to get spy techs to install chips into them.

Michael: Because it's cool to have them.

Jason: Because it's cool to have them. It'll be like "Did you get Apple chipped?" Read your mind. And oh yeah, by the way, they can kill you with a single button press because, I don't know. That whole conspiracy thing I think it's already there. They don't need to install the chips into people because everybody keeps their iPhone with them wherever they go. Why bother installing it in somebody because then they can get it updated because once you install it, they have to come and they have to be with you when you upgrade it and all this different stuff. The get people to actually buy the technology and keep it with them at all times.

Michael: And pay for it!

Jason: People go around and pay for it and taking pictures of everything that they're doing. That's the way to do it. Not try to install technology. Because technology gets out of date and they need to get the latest, the newest, the greatest and so that's why things like Apple are supported and all these companies and all this stuff.

Niall: Well regarding NSA spy scandal and Apple and Microsoft and Google and Facebook, from their point of view, they're not really going to Apple to get the goods, right? An Apple isn't an end-user product. It's almost like the spin-off of the real venture, right, the real work that takes place behind the scenes. Maybe we can talk about that for a while because...

Jason: All these companies are resellers for tech made somewhere else. Say for instance Intel moved its production plant to Israel, two words: MO-SSAD. Basically the Intel processor, they're making the processors. And Intel makes more than just a processor for your CPU, which is what does the calculations and helps you on the computer, they do the chips for your internet card. And so why bother installing spyware when you can just insert a command sequence and just have direct, raw access to the internet card or the Wi-Fi card or whatever it is. And that's why they do it. So they've probably got this to the point where it's actually instituted at the hardware level in a way that you couldn't really find out or understand. Because that would be much easier to hide than them actually going to Apple and that whole thing where install a room, they might actually do that, but it's just to convince people that that's how they have to do it, you know, because that would be a waste of time. I wouldn't do it that way. Install a room and have a guy sitting there? That's BS. That's just the act that they put on.

Michael: There was a study done on an automobile where they tried to hack it because most modern cars have Bluetooth connectors and can connect to the internet and everything, it's like electronic and they actually succeeded to hack this car by a Bluetooth dongle and managed to turn the wheels independently and apply the brakes at high speed. So they put this on a stand in a lab and they just programmed it into the hardware and it's not even necessary to run an operating system on it.

Niall: I think we've got a call. Is that right?

Scott: We certainly do. Let's see. We have a call from Joel from Sweden. Joel, are you there?

Joel: Hello?

Scott: Hi. Welcome to the show.

Niall: What's your comment or question?

Joel: Well I was thinking about when it comes to the question of brand identification. Another article I read on SOTT sometime ago which was about studies that had been done on brain activity when it comes to people who are closely identified with some brand such as Apple. And what was found was that the pattern is exactly the same as with religion, when people are involved with religious activities. That's exactly how the brain lights up when someone engages in, for instance, their avid devotion.

Niall: Well that's fascinating. That's exactly what we've been observing. But we've been thinking of it by way of analogy but literally...

Scott: It appears it's actually literal.

Jason: Yeah, it's literal. It's a religion.

Scott: Wow!

Jason: And Steve Jobs is the second coming.

Niall: Yeah, it's like traditionally the kind of analysis of peoples' brand identification has been that people identify with the lifestyle or some section of the lifestyle, but when it comes to, we're talking about a level of religion, it's like it's more than that. It's a captured mind. It's complete and utter control of someone.

Scott: In other words, if brand identification is literally acting on the brain as religion does, then when you are extremely identified with a certain brand you are quite literally in a religious cult. That's the long and the short of it I guess.

Jason: And considering, like Mikey was mentioning the sticker, and I think mark of the beast, people putting the mark of the beast all over the place. I'm sorry it just sticks in my mind.

Michael: I can give you an example of how far that can go and that's again from the video that we mentioned at the beginning of this radio show. I'm just quoting here: "Apple's new saucer-shaped office building on a 150 acre property in Cupertino will have a diameter of 16,015 feet, more than twice the base of the great pyramid and more than the diameter of the Pentagon. It will be visible by telescope from other planets and will join other such structures, pyramids, earth drawings, etc., which have this beacon light distinction. We can expect the Apple offices unitary glass ring window construction will be quite the reflector of light, much more than the capstone of the great pyramid."

Niall: That's a joke, right?

Jason: Oh my god!

Michael: It's no joke.

Jason: It's word salad. He's mixing like aliens and Gurdjieff.

Michael: But you see what it does to your brain.

Jason: You have to be really careful. What was the name of this guy? Oh my god, I can't believe it, just slipped my mind.

Niall: Joel, you got anything else to say there?

Joel: Well I was thinking about when we all started up, how the late systems can form justice, even religions, in connection with brand identification which also goes into these narratives people use to justify their decisions, in this case, purchase and generally their allegiance to a brand.

Niall: Yeah, it's across the board. But have you noticed it or do you know people who use Apple or even with any of these other so-called smart technologies? Do you see it in people?

Joel: Not so much with Apple specifically around me because I don't have any Apple fans in my life. [laughter]

Niall: You stay clear of them. You're lucky. You're smart. Well obviously it speaks to something that's deeper and beyond any one company. What companies like Apple, Samsung, all have done is, whether it's by design or just by sheer accident or trial and error, they've got to the point now where they know how we think so well and can tailor things so well that they've got people completely and utterly beholden to one way of seeing, in this context, of seeing information technology and its uses. YouTube, one of the most viewed videos on YouTube, they're just totally vacuous. We've got this sea of information before us. We've got unlimited potential to learn.

Jason: The epic fails. The epic fail videos. Those are some of the most popular.

Niall: The jackass. It's idiocracy. It's like that movie, writ large.

Jason: It's already here. But I wanted to say something. Do you have anything else Joel?

Joel: I was just also thinking about this huge contrast if you look at the potential of the technology, what it can be used for and what some people use it for, SOTT for instance, and what most people do. So these companies, well they succeed in entrapping most people as do governments with their propaganda and various other contexts. Some manage to escape this. And I think at the same time all this technology relates the internet together. If you look at how it's affected humanity at large, then it's looking to shape up to a disaster largely. And at the same time it is also the only hope I would say for those who manage to keep their minds free from these things. It is the only real place left for relatively free exchange of information in our world today.

Scott: Yeah, and it's certainly true that we have and the forum at and yeah, the internet made that possible. So as much as we can see that all these tech companies and all this technology are used in an evil way, it's kind of like my power tool analogy. While I'm not going to become obsessed and super-identified with the power tool, it really does depend on how you use it and what you use it for. I wouldn't mind seeing more people actually use technology for the spread of information, the spreading of knowledge and that sounds good to me.

Jason: They use it for spreading videos of Miley Cyrus twerking.

Joel: Thinking that if you look at the effects that technology has on people then I think it has a polarizing effect so that people who are asleep, as Gurdjieff spoke of, they become even more wrapped up in their sleep while the people who strive to waken are empowered by, particularly internet-related technologies, so it makes the worse, worse and it makes the best all the better.

Niall: That's a good way of looking at it, as this polarizing effect. If everyone had their iPad out to share their SOTT articles, then there's a silver lining to it. Well that's the question I have is it the technology itself or is it something else? Well we've kind of answered that. But I still wonder where the technology might have gone if, let's say, its true potential had been allowed to develop as the original programmers foresaw and as they still try to work at today. You know what I mean? It's like its being held back by this corporate elite that wants a closed loop because they need to extract the maximum profit from it. But they're trying to extract profit from something that is potentially limitless in creativity.

Jason: But it's becoming limited because, as Joel's saying, it's kind of like that but very quickly it's becoming not that because of these closed Apple systems and these closed developer platforms. They actually create a class of software that can be created with their equipment and they prevent you from doing anything outside of that way. So you can make 100,000 versions of angry birds with different colors and different pictures and different types of buttons and all that different stuff, if that's what you want to do, but when it comes to actually making any kind of innovative applications, it's becoming less and less possible because of the technologies and paradigms they're now teaching people. If all you learn about computer programming is Rails, then you are limited to a very small class of applications with a very, very limited amount of usefulness.

Joel: Also in thinking about all of this in part I think it's, as you have discussed, it furthers the enervation of society and the way people live and function and relate to each other. But also I think all of these ways that technologies are being abused and used for evil, is pretty much a symptom of a society that is already quite sick and growing evermore hysterical. I don't think it could have been any other way, given how screwed up things already were.

Niall: That's a very good way of putting it, Joel. I think that's the bottom line. Something that Gurdjieff himself would have said, but things are what they are because there could be no other way. And so we see with technology.

Jason: I have something to say on this thing that Mikey - this guy, right? And Milton Erickson who was the creator of Ericksonian hypnosis, he was a clinical psychiatrist I guess, and he worked in a psychiatric ward with schizophrenic people. And he was always doing hypnosis experiments and apparently he had this nurse who had these terrible, terrible migraines. And she asked him to do some hypnosis on her and it totally didn't work. So at this time he was dealing with a lot of schizophrenic patients. And he had this crazy idea, and what he did is he sat down with a schizophrenic person and just wrote down every single thing that they said. And then what he would do is he would call her in and he would read out loud and dictate to her everything that the schizophrenic patient would say. And deeply embedded in there were the hypnotic commands that he wanted to deliver to her. And he found that this was wildly successful. And it became kind of a basis for his technique of telling nonsensical stories, of saying nonsensical things because as they kind of learned, bullshit baffles brains, basically. When you hear a stream of word salad, it actually sends you into kind of a confusion induction, a trance.

Michael: Reversive blockade.

Jason: Kind of, not exactly like the reversive blockade, but when someone is saying things that have no sense whatsoever, like basically on the level of schizophrenic stuff, you get this information overload of non-sequiturs and things that don't connect and then all of a sudden you hit this point where you get into basically a confusion induction. You are basically almost in a hypnotic trance. And then little commands that are inserted into that have a much stronger effect. So when people sit there and they listen to this stuff, like what this guy is saying, it's a hypnotic speech. A word salad is hypnotic to people. And that's kind of how that stuff works. And you see that a lot with these fourth way teachers and stuff like that. They just basically blah, blah, blah, blah, the word salad and then towards the end you get the actual message that they're trying to communicate. And they've learned that all they have to do is just basically take a bunch of non-sequiturs and put it together, which is different than kind of like a reversive blockade which kind of bombards you with lies.

Niall: With the direct opposite of the truth.

Jason: So strongly that eventually it weakens your system. And then eventually you give in and then it comes through and then you kind of become powerless because this person just keeps drilling the lie over and over again whereas with this way, you get bombarded with these shots of insanity.

Niall: Okay, I think - Joel, you must be still on the line. We're going to let you go there. Thanks very much for calling in.

Joel: Okay. Thanks. Bye.

Jason: Take care.

Scott: Bye-bye.

Joel: Bye-bye.

Niall: There's something we haven't touched on that it's an example of, I think, clearly it's a choice somewhere along the line here where it's the technology that did not have to be used. It's not out there out of necessity, and that's Wi-Fi. It drives me nuts. A few years ago I moved into a new place. I thought "Well, I'm going to get the internet" so call up a couple of companies. I couldn't find a single company that would provide me with a modem that was did not oblige me to use Wi-Fi. And they moved in that direction when there was no need to.

Jason: Well I mean, it has been moving in that way. And as to whether or not there was a need to, yes and no. Wires can become unmanageable in a situation. They're not unmanageable. They do kind of get in the way and you run them all over the place. So it is kind of a mild inconvenience to some people to have to take care of the wires. So there always has been this push for wireless technologies for Bluetooth and Infrared and all this different stuff. So it does kind of make sense, but obviously they went with maybe not the healthiest thing. I think that they didn't really test it out and see, because it does have a lot of adverse effects on people. It is a health risk, and they've shown that, especially with cell phones, it's the same thing. And cell phones are a wireless technology as well.

Scott: Yeah, and I've had personal experience and other friends and family have had extremely negative experiences when Wi-Fi was present in the living area. And to me, okay, is it really more convenient because it's not that hard. In fact it's even inexpensive to get a little router or a switch. When you get one of these, like Niall was saying, the internet providers give you their box and it has Wi-Fi in it. Well it also has four or five Ethernet ports in the back. So you have the box sitting next to your computer or something for the average family let's say, they're going to have one, two, maybe even three computers, well it's not hard. You buy the box very cheaply or you get the box from your provider. You pay five bucks a cable and you hook things up by Ethernet.

Wi-Fi currently there's a 2.4 gigahertz variance. There's an increasingly popular 5 gigahertz variance. And the new one that they announced in the not-so-long-ago is 60 gigahertz. Now you remember, I think it's that active denial system that makes you feel like you're on fire. I think that operates at 65 gigahertz. Of course the power levels we're talking about here are very different, but then you get into other questions like Wi-Fi, you're sending data digitally using these microwave frequencies, literally. And then you go okay well they're using some kind of encoding or encryption and you're sending this digital signal and there are a lot of studies that show that this is seriously bad for you.

Jason: So what you're saying here is that people are actually installing into their homes an active denial device or whatever it is?

Scott: Yeah, they might not feel like they're on fire.

Jason: Are they going to stop using teargas and when they go to raid somebody's apartment they're just going to be like "supercharge his Wi-Fi" and they'll all fall over and clutch their stomach.

Michael: What's active denial?

Scott: The active denial, I'm not sure if that's the name, but it's the gizmo where there's a big panel on top of a vehicle like the U.S. military has them.

Michael: Oh yeah.

Scott: It's like a big panel and it actually shoots what they call a millimeter wave. I think its 65 gigahertz. Shoots a beam of radio frequency energy at 65 gigahertz, and it penetrates 164th of an inch into your skin and, this is what they say, it activates the nerve receptors. What it's actually doing is basically cooking a thin layer of your skin. And they did tests and they found that 120 degrees, it heats...

Michael: It's painful.

Scott: ...this portion of your skin to 120 degrees Fahrenheit. Well, that's hot. And then you feel like you're on fire and you jump out of the way of the beam. And here they are, and they're like "Yeah, we've got a new version of Wi-Fi and it's 60 gigahertz". Even common Wi-Fi now is 2.4 gigahertz. The frequency of microwave ovens is not far off, I don't remember exactly, it was 2.1, 2.2, something like that. Right around 2 gigahertz, if I'm not mistaken. But the point is that at that point, you're talking about microwave energy. There are a lot of studies that show, and cell phones are the same, they're 1.8, 1.9 gigahertz. I wrote an article before about if you have to carry a cell phone around with you, make sure you know where the antenna is and aim it away from your body if you have to have it on your person. Talk as little as possible with the phone up by your head because when you get a cell phone, one of the specifications that they give is the SAR, the specific absorption rate, or in France it's the DAS, the D-A-S, and it's basically given in watts per kilogram of body weight, or whatever. It's basically a measure of how much microwave energy your body or specifically your head is absorbing. And some of these numbers are freaking scary. And actually some of the earliest iPhones were among the highest, the SAR ratings, the amount of RF energy that was being absorbed by your head, the earliest iPhones and actually Blackberries were the absolute worst. So if you have a Blackberry, get rid of it!

Jason: Yeah.

Niall: And that was in 2007. Even by then they were well aware that there were complications. People were getting brain tumors in teenagers for god sake!

Jason: There have been news reports, teenagers with brain tumors.

Niall: That's with respect to mobile phones. Now your Wi-Fi may not be actually frying you, but we don't know what it is doing.

Jason: Just it's a constant level of exposure.

Niall: Yeah, it's a constant level.

Scott: Unlike a cell phone, if you've got Wi-Fi in your house, you are constantly exposed and the same is true of these DECT digital cordless phones, like a normal telephone that you hook up to your landline in your house, and they're cordless. In North America, in Europe, as far as I'm aware, pretty much everywhere, they use the system called DECT, D-E-C-T. And it's basically, again, 2.4 gigahertz, kind of the same as Wi-Fi, more or less. These things, even when you're not using the phone, the things are transmitting. And you've got Wi-Fi in your house why expose yourself to all this microwave energy when there are so many people who have had these horrible negative experiences, there have been lots of studies released in some countries. We had an article on SOTT about, I don't remember what country it was, but they banned Wi-Fi in the classroom. And it was like "Wow! There's an idea!"

Jason: Yeah, they should. And then of course these ultra-thin Mac books, that have now started to force other companies to try to go ultra-thin because somehow this has become very important. And one of the first things they get rid of to make them thin is they get rid of the lans. They only have Wi-Fi available.

Scott: Yeah, wireless keyboards. Why on earth do you need a wireless keyboard or mouse for? You're sitting at a desktop computer and you need a wireless keyboard and mouse, for what?

Niall: Well, they say it's for convenience, but Jesus, at what price for that convenience? How far are you willing to pay for convenience?

Jason: And I'm just saying that in this case they kind of do have this reason for it. They say "Look it's kind of really inconvenient to have all these cables." And for people who are lazy and this guy gives the example of it's easy to lay cord. Well yeah, in a certain sense it is, especially if you know what you're doing. But you talk about a family who wants to get a computer for their main room and a computer for their teenage kid and then all of a sudden the dad is like "Now I've got to run cable", you can see how he would be attracted by the offer of Wi-Fi.

Niall: There are alternatives though.

Jason: Yeah, there are. Sure.

Niall: Like this concept where you plug in an adaptor in one room and you can use the house mains.

Michael: A power line.

Scott: Yeah, it's basically Ethernet over...

Niall: Over mains.

Scott: ...the little adaptor, you plug one into two different power outlets and you essentially run the signals that travel over an Ethernet cable, you send them through your power lines.

Jason: It's very cool.

Scott: I'm not sure if that's better or worse because Ethernet cables are specifically designed in twisted pairs and in terms of interference and emissions and that sort of thing, I would probably personally go with just a good old fashioned Ethernet cable. If you want to go really hard core, you can even get filters that filter out super low frequency emissions from power outlets and all that kind of stuff. And I think that's probably a good step to take as well. But from a very basic level, it's not just people, and part of the reason why maybe you've got a bunch of teenagers and everybody walking around like a bunch of zombies is because there are cell towers everywhere. There's Wi-Fi everywhere. Everyone's carrying around a personal brain irradiator in their pocket. People sleep with their phone on and use it, it's like you never get out of this electromagnetic smog and couple that with poor diet.

Michael: Plus the light.

Niall: Yeah, something that strikes me now is that we've created this technology-enabled world that sort of mimics the way nature intended things. What I'm thinking of here is if you think about the idea that the human being, the body, is a frequency reader and modulator of cosmic energies, that is it picks up signals from its environment all the time, our very DNA actually decodes signal information constantly. And we've found ourselves in a world where we believe that such things are only possible with the help of the device in your pocket receiving the transmission from the radio tower that comes from Big Brother central, whatever. It's like this virtual technology version of reality. It's a virtual reality.

Jason: And you do see that the generations that have come and are here now are not quite adequate to the generations who came before in a certain sense. And what's created today is less than what was created before, previously. And actually there has been a consistent degradation of human creativity and output over the years. And it makes you wonder if all these devices aren't, in a certain sense, interference for our ability to interact with any kind of creative or cosmic forces.

Just from a slightly off the topic philosophical thing, along with what you're saying, maybe the technology that surrounds us, this poor, cheap copy of the way the universe works, actually prevents us from acquiring any abilities or becoming better because as technology has "improved" it seems that human beings have degraded consistently. And the creativity, sculpture, art, all this different stuff, you can see that there has been an objective decline in the creative output. And the early creations, in computers we're talking about what a genius Steve Wozniak was and the type of things that he was doing at the time, well he wasn't surrounded by computers. And you see what comes up today and it's really kind of these pre-stamped, pre-fabricated, Angry Birds, Farmville, the applications Facebook is considered to be some great technological innovation. It's really fundamentally insulting to the developers.

Michael: That's a generation that has yet to grow up and be adults, so we don't really know now what's going to happen when they have to take responsibility in life with jobs. So it's still an experiment where we don't know what's going to come out of it.

Jason: Right.

Niall: We're running out of time here. We have run out of time. We've run overtime, so I think we'll wrap up the show. Thank you very much guys and thanks to all of our listeners, our callers and our chat room chatters. So yeah, we're going to back at the same time next week. We're going to unplug from the matrix now, but I think the bottom line for us is of course, technology can be used for good but we're in a situation where as part of waking up to reality, we need to network with each other in a real way, and maybe try and detach ourselves a bit from this over-identification with the products.

Jason: Yeah, unplug a bit. We've got to unplug ourselves because it's so distracting.

Scott: Yeah and when you can so easily believe a lie about some technical gizmo, how much easier is it to believe a lie then about politics, 911, climate change, all this stuff.

Jason: Diet.

Scott: Once you start down the path, it's...

Jason: Start down the path to the dark side, forever will it dominate your destiny. [laughing] Exactly.

Niall: Okay, we're going to sign off with a song I believe. A little bit of humor to brighten up the day!

Scott: It's a little dedication to Dennis Ritchie.

Jason: In loving memory.

Scott: For all you nerds out there.

Niall: Thanks listeners and see you same time next week.

Michael: Thank you. Good bye.
SONG to the tune of the Beatles "Let It Be":

When I find my code in tons of trouble
Friends and colleagues come to me
Speaking words of wisdom
Write in C.

As the deadline fast approaches
And bugs are all that I can see.
Somewhere, someone whispers
Write in C.

Write in C, write in C,
Write in C, oh, write in C.
LISP is dead and buried.
Write in C.

I used to write a lot of FORTRAN,
For science it worked flawlessly.
Try using it for graphics!
Write in C.

If you've just spent nearly 30 hours
Debugging some assembly.
Soon you will be glad to
Write in C.

Write in C, write in C,
Write in C, yeah, write in C.
Only wimps use BASIC.
Write in C.

Write in C, write in C
Write in C, oh, write in C.
Pascal won't quite cut it.
Write in C.

Write in C, write in C,
Write in C, yeah, write in C.
Don't even mention COBOL.
Write in C.

And when the screen is fuzzy
And the editor is bugging me,
I'm sick of ones and zeroes.
Write in C.

A thousand people swear that T.P.
Seven is the one for me.
I hate the word PROCEDURE.
Write in C.

Write in C, write in C,
Write in C, yeah, write in C.
PL1 is 80's.
Write in C.

Write in C, write in C,
Write in C, yeah, write in C.
The government loves ADA.
Write in C.