March 22, 2021

Webb, Webcams, and Wind Breaking


Episode 19 of Thank The Week included:

  • Some tech-savvy animals
  • A sportsman with an unusual move
  • A surprise from Google
  • Comedy TV roulette
  • A family night in of epic proportions
  • And a special day of my own invention

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Transcript
Craig Williamson:

Coming up, we have some tech savvy animals. We have a sportsman with a quite unusual move. We have a surprise from Google, some comedy TV roulette, a family night in of epic proportions, and a very special day of my own invention. Let's Thank The Week.

Announcer:

Thank The Week. Learning to be thankful for last week and excited for this week. With your host, Craig Williamson.

Craig Williamson:

Welcome to Episode 19 of Thank The Week for the week of the 22nd to the 28th of March 2021. This is the podcast where we embrace positivity, looking back on all the great things that happened last week, and getting excited for all the great things we've got to look forward to this week. As ever, I'll be looking at news, sports, tech entertainment and my own daily life. So let's get to it.

Announcer:

News

Craig Williamson:

COVID vaccination progress continues around the world. In the UK, almost half of the UK adult population have had their first dose. And we are due to complete the priority groups and all over 50s by mid April. In the US, it's about 35% of the adult population that have had at least one dose. And worldwide there's over 250 million people who've now been given their first dose of the vaccine. So terrific news there. You're familiar probably regular listeners with my obsession with famous people getting their vaccine on TV, because it has been known that I can faint when needles and blood are involved. So I'm kind of interested to see someone else in a similar predicament. We had an exciting day on Friday, because we knew Boris Johnson was going to get his first dose of the vaccine. And I waited all day for the coverage. And then in the evening, we got a couple of pictures. So he had his vaccine, and a big two thumbs up picture afterwards. No live video. But he seemed okay. The French Prime Minister took his and that was recorded on video. And I must say it looked a little uncomfortable. Actually, he did have his mask on. So it's a bit difficult to read expressions, but I'm not too sure. He was enjoying things behind that mask. Anyway, very good news on the vaccination from here in the UK, we have a national day of reflection on Tuesday, the 23rd of March this week. And that's because it's 12 months since the first UK lockdown began. So there's going to be a minute silence at 12 noon, and people are encouraged to light up their doorsteps in the evening on that day. And I think it's just incredible thinking back isn't it? So a year ago, certainly in the UK since the first lockdown, but I think lots of positives, lots of things that we can look forward to in the future and hopefully get ourselves out of this situation. This week, the Guardian had an article I was quite interested in it reported the experiences of to zoos in the Czech Republic. And what they're struggling with is getting interaction for their chimpanzees, because they've been close to visitors since December. So what these zoos decided to do was to instal some big screens and some video cameras between these two zoos, which are about 150 kilometres apart for the chimpanzee enclosures. So essentially, the chimps can watch each other from a distance, so 150 kilometres apart, and they can see what's going on. And apparently, it's been quite interesting to see their behaviour. So for example, when something kicks off in one of the enclosures, then in the other enclosure, they all gather around the TV and watch and see what's going to develop, which is kind of like what we do, isn't it. And often they sit down and eat some snacks while watching the action as well. So that's the chimpanzees. And I really liked the headline in The Guardian because it used the phrase chimpanzoom, which I thought was quite clever for a newspaper. So anyway, the chimpanzees enjoying a bit of chimpanzee zoom in the Czech Republic this week,

Announcer:

Sport

Craig Williamson:

This is a big week for sports fans. So if you're a motorsport fan, the Formula One season starts again this weekend. So on Friday is the first practice and then the rest is on Sunday. And that's the first Grand Prix from Bahrain. So Lewis Hamilton win his seventh title last year and he will be going for his eighth and obviously he was knighted after that, which is why he is now so Lewis. There is a 23 race calendar and it's all over the world, running from March to December so very packed season a Formula One action ahead. in boxing, it was announced that Anthony Joshua and Tyson fury have agreed to match up and they're looking forward to two fights this year. Joshua holds the WB IBF and wb titles, while fury holds the WBC heavyweight title. So this is a unification battle. Two fights, apparently one scheduled for the summer one later in the year. rumours are this is 200 million pounds per fight. So that's 400 million pounds which is quite incredible thing a few of the finer details still still to be sorted out but boxing fans will be excited to see that some unusual sneaker news for you this week. S o in The w st Pro Series tournament which is currently taking place in Milton Keynes in England, there was Ronnie O'Sullivan, one of the greats of the sport, he's won so many world titles, and is just a bit of an outlandish character as well. very outspoken. Anyway, there's a video of him, he takes one shot in this tournament, so he's bent over the table. If you're not familiar with snooker, you have to bend over the table to take your shot. So he bends over, takes his shot pasta ball. And as he goes up, right and comes out of his crouched position, he breaks wind very loudly, and it was caught on video, which is quite amusing. And I must admit, it did not sound like an accident. It wasn't one of those where he's bent over thinking, Oh, this this could go badly. When I come up. He actually came up, right. And it was fairly loud and proud. If I can say that. And then the best thing was he continued to play on with his break. He potted several more balls. But all the while he was just chuckling to himself, he'd really amused himself with that episode. So if you want to see that I've put a link in the show notes, you can go to thank the week.com slash 19 to see that. A disturbing side effect is I seen this article and then I needed to find it again for the podcast, because obviously I wanted to share it with you. So I had to search for it. And then ever since I searched for it, Google keeps recommending articles to me about sports people breaking wind. It's just a bit spooky how Google tracks these things. And you know, I'm not that interested. But you know, I am always open to the odd nice video. So maybe you'll hear more about that in the future. If Google sends something my way, Wrapping up the sport with of course football. We had the Champions League finished the round of 16 last week, and we had the draw for the quarterfinals and the semi finals and we've got three British clubs through there, which is terrific. So quarterfinals, we've got Bayern Munich against Paris and German and then Manchester City against Borussia Dortmund. And the winners of those two will play off in the semi final. And then the other two quarterfinals we have Real Madrid against Liverpool and Porto against Chelsea, and the winner of those two will play the next semi final. There was also the Europa League draw for the quarterfinals. We've got two British clubs through to that. And then of course finals are Manchester United are playing Granada and Arsenal playing Slavia Prague, not domestic football because we've got International Men's football this week, the USA are playing Jamaica this Thursday, and that's taking place in Austria. And then on Sunday, the 28th of March USA playing Northern Ireland in Belfast, so a couple of friendlies lined up for USA. And actually they hopefully can feel quite a strong team. Having those games in Europe allows them access to their European best players without having to fly around the world. I think the likes of Pulisic from Chelsea, for example, should be available for that. So a couple of USA friendlies to look forward to. And then England have some World Cup qualifiers on Thursday the 25th in England against San Marino, and Sunday the 28th we have Albania against England

Announcer:

Tech

Craig Williamson:

Google had a bit of a surprise announcement this week. And they released an updated version of their Nest Hub, which is their little small screen smart display. And actually, it looks pretty much identical to the previous generation. So this new second generation version does apparently have better sound quality 50% more bass, if that's your thing, but the main innovation is that it watches you sleep. Now to sound a little creepy, it doesn't have a camera in it. So it's not going to be at your bedside table, watching everything that goes on in your bedroom, that would be a bit creepy. But what he does have is Google's soli radar technology. So this is a very low level radar built into the system, which can monitor movements. So it can look out with this radar and see how you are moving. So if you've got that by your bedside, it can see how restful or restless your sleep was by tracking your movements during the night. Also, with that radar, you can use gestures to do things like skip music by swiping your hand in front of the screen and things like that. The other good news is that the price has come down as well. So this is launching from the 30th of March. And in the US it's only going to be $99 in the UK 89 pounds. And that's actually $50 cheaper than the original one was at launch. So that's the second generation of Google's nest hub. If you want to see some new mobile phone tech, then you should look out for new mobile phones coming from OnePlus this week. They have their OnePlus 9 Series 5G product launch scheduled for this Tuesday. That's the 23rd and it's going to be at 10am. Eastern Time 2pm in the UK, and they've teased the link with Hasselblad who are well established camera manufacturer so it's kind of hinting that they've got some kind of camera tie up with Hasselblad and that might give some hints to some improvements to their camera technology. One plus i renowned for having good value high spec Android phones so well worth keep an eye out for that on Tuesday. And hot off the press. I've heard rumours that there may be a watch being launched as well. So Look out for that on Tuesday of this week

Announcer:

Entertainment

Craig Williamson:

Now in the week that the Oscar nominations came out, I'm not going to go into too much detail about those other than to tell you that Olivia Coleman, the British actress, has been nominated again and she's going to hope to repeat her 2019 success when she won an Oscar with the favourite this year, she has been nominated for her role in the father. Why am I mentioning Olivia Coleman. Besides the fact that she's British, it is because I finished my latest lockdown binge watch this week. And that was a British comedy TV series called Peep Show. And Olivia Coleman did feature in the peep show, actually, throughout the whole running of nine series. So peep show ran from 2003 to 2015, which is incredible longevity, nine series 54 episodes in total, I've managed to get through them all. And it follows a couple of university friends who live together, and it follows their exploits through life. So it's by David Mitchell and Robert Webb, Mitchell and Webb, who are two well known British comedians, just a really, really funny comedy really encourage you to go check that out. And one of the characters so David Mitchell plays Mike Corrigan, and Olivia Coleman is his crush his office crush at the start of that show. I won't spoil it by telling you how it turns out. But they do feature remarkably throughout the whole of the nine series. So that was a peep show, which I managed to finish. This week, I really enjoyed the peep show. So I'm actually looking forward to watching more shows featuring Mitchell and Webb, I don't know how I've escaped seeing them on TV. Obviously, they've been around a lot since 2003, for the peep show. And I understand there are a couple of series, they're involved in ones called Back, which I believe is fairly new. And there was also one called Upstart Crow as well. So I'm looking forward to checking those out. But now it brings me on to what's going to be my next binge watch, I need something with lots of series, ideally, a comedy. So I did a bit of googling. And I found a forum where people who'd actually watched Silicon Valley had recommended similar shores. So I did actually dig out this list when I'd finished Silicon Valley, and I got Peep Show from the list. So it turned out well, from that respect. So what I've done is, I've now gone through this list, I think there were maybe 15 or so shows there. And I searched through all my streaming channels to see what I've got access to. And I found six of them. So what I'm going to do is I'm going to audition them. So I'm going to do the first episode of the six TV series, hopefully get through them this week. And then I can report back to you next week, and see if any of them are worthy of Me sticking with for their entirety. So those six programmes that I will be watching series one episode one of this week are Fresh Meat, Phone shop, Black Books, Man Down, Misfits, and The IT Crowd. So look forward to that over the week.

Announcer:

Life

Craig Williamson:

I know you're just longing for a tech update. What's Craig doing with tech? I know that's what you're asking yourselves. You know, I'm happy with my lighting situation, got my hue light, got my hue dimmer switch, very pleased with that. still excited about my InkPlate 10. This is the 10 inch e ink display that I'm going to hopefully be able to programme, all sorts of fancy things on there. If you want to hear a bit more about that you can look back to episodes 12 and 13, where I talked about that. Also, Episode 14 I talked about Poly and their new webcams. And actually, I've jumped on board for that I needed some new tech to get me excited. I was looking around my office as I do most days thinking what could I look to that could enhance my existence in this office and make things a bit more comfortable, maybe bring some tech excitement, and I looked up at my webcam. And I thought you know what webcams do annoy me webcams, how come we are stuck with very poor quality webcams. It's incredible. The one I have is a Logitech C 920. Now, don't get me wrong, it's not a bad webcam. And people are still recommending this thing, because it's got relatively high quality image. And the low light performance is pretty good as well. So even if the lighting in your room isn't too good, he generally get a reasonable picture. But this thing has been out for nine years. It was released nine years ago. And Logitech. Yeah, they've released a few new versions, but there's nothing actually that special in the new versions. And obviously, with a pandemic over the last 12 months, it's really revealed how everyone is suddenly needing a webcam. You couldn't buy them for several months because they were just out of stock everywhere. And I just think it's a real shame how these tech firms have just rested on their laurels and started to make money off these things just for so many years without innovating. So I talked in Episode 14 about Poly who have put out a whole series of new webcams and the one I'm taking the plunge on is the Poly P5 Studio webcam. Now there are those were slightly larger products so they had a larger one that had a huge speaker. And they also had a dedicated display that had a built in webcam and a built in light which did have me quite excited, but it was a lot of money and I don't really have room for that or the need for it. But I thought actually a new little webcam might be nice. So I've taken the plunge and I've pre ordered the poly p five studio webcam It's about 120 pounds, it is expensive for a webcam, don't get me wrong, I might be sending it back if it's performance doesn't live up to expectations. But I'm really hopeful that in the 10 years, since Logitech came out with the one I'm using right now, hopefully things will have advanced. And I will let you know how I get on with that. We're excited here for Sunday, this week in the UK, where our clocks go forward one hour. I know that happened for you in the us a couple of weeks earlier. But having that extra hour of daylight in the evening is going to make such a difference. So it helped the kids to play out a bit later at night, help us to go out for walks and runs. And just yeah, just I think it kind of gives you feel that summers on the way as well. So really excited for the clock's changing this Sunday. And another thing as a family, we're very excited about once in every 10 years, this happens, I think the US had your last one in 2020. That was last year. I am of course talking about census there. It's when every household in the land is asked to fill out a questionnaire. And it assesses the size of the population, and all sorts of demographics information so governments can figure out what they need to provide for us. And the first UK census was actually in 1801. So this does only happen once every 10 years, you get actually in the UK, there's a 1000 pound fine if you don't fill it, or if you fill it and give false information. So certainly don't do that. So as we thought this is quite a significant event in our family, our kids obviously will not remember the last time we filled it out. Let's be honest, I can't remember the last time I filled it out, obviously, 10 years ago, but the next time we have a census, then hopefully and my fingers are firmly crossed here. The kids will be out living their own lives being very happy and successful by themselves. So we thought we should do this as a nice family census completion event. Don't let anybody say that Williamson's do not know how to have a good time. It's Friday night, we're all sat downstairs around the TV. And we're going to fill out the census. What fun. And when I mentioned this to the kids over dinner, I was very shocked to hear voices of agreement and excitement. They were very much looking forward to it. And then I realised it was because dawn had promised him sweets. So there is chocolate abound as we settle down for our Friday night fun of filling in our census. Is everyone excited?

Harper Williamson:

Yay.

Craig Williamson:

The sweets are filled to the brim. Everyone's excited to get started. Census day. Let's get going. So I'm on the website, and I've got the laptop up onto the big screen TV so everyone can share in this fun evening. Just got to type in our 16 character access code. They know our address. Right then lets us begin. You will need to know names of people living at this address and names of visitors staying overnight on the 21st of March. That will be nobody do you usually live this address? Yes. What is your name? Do any of the following people also live at this address family members and partners? Yes, we have Dawn Williamson. And we have Henry Williamson. And we have did you put your middle name? Right everyone is now listed? household relationships. frosty? Dawn Williamson is your husband or wife, Henry Williamson is your son, Harper Williamson is my son . Right? They've got all our names and they've got all our relationships with each other. Next, we're going to find out about the type of property. How many bedrooms, what type of central heating,

Harper Williamson:

central heating,

Craig Williamson:

how many cars or vans. Right so we've talked about the people who live here. We've talked about the household and accommodation and now each individual has their own section. Right? We're going to ask you about Craig Williamson, date of birth. Well, it tells you how old you are. What's your sex, marital status? Go married to someone of the opposite sex. You wish student no country of birth one year ago What was your usual address? How would you describe your national identity? ethnic group religion, passports die home? How's your health in general? have you achieved a degree, two A levels? It's fun. This is the kids. So is asking what I do for a living where I work how many hours I work. We travel to work. Okay, the conflicting thing this year what yes says says describe how you mainly work at them. And even if Coronavirus is affected, oh, that's me done. Let's do the kids. So we're done. That was pretty quick. It was mainly dates of birth, religion. And then for the adults it was work and where we work and what we do qualifications where we normally base ourselves. And that's it, the whole family's finished. And now I can click Submit, done

Announcer:

Harper

Harper Williamson:

We have made a plan to do more gardening. And so we're going to use an old iron gate, and we're going to upcycle it into a planter type thing. So we're going to hang it up on a wall and get a couple of tin cans, maybe paint a few and then attach them onto the iron gate with zip ties, and then we'll put some plants in there. So some trailing plants like the abelia. And then I made a suggestion that we could also put a couple of hubs in there, like mint, and maybe time, I think it would be a good idea to put some hubs in there, because it's always nice when you're doing some cooking to pick a couple of leaves. And we haven't had a project in a while. So it's nice to have something to do on the weekend and after school. And I think that it will finish off the garden very nicely.

Announcer:

Random

Craig Williamson:

Oh, I've got some good ones for you this week, Tuesday, the 23rd of March, it's Near Miss Day, It commemorates March the 23rd 1989. When a large asteroid nearly hit the Earth. Well, it was 500,000 miles away, but that is classified as a near miss. So perhaps you should celebrate this day, by watching a movie, I can highly recommend Deep Impact. And if you must, you could watch Armageddon. So that's Near Miss Day. On Tuesday, the 23rd. Wednesday, the 24th of March, it is chocolate covered raisins day. Now this is quite a simple pleasure. Most people who know me will tell you I'm not very adventurous when it comes to food. Now even chocolate covered raisins. I like chocolate. I like raisins. But I must admit it took me a while to pluck up the courage to actually try this and then it revolutionised my world. Well, perhaps it wasn't quite that significant. But it was a surprising delight. And they are fantastic. So yeah, chocolate covered raisins there. Dive in for that my wife's giving up chocolate for Lent. So actually, if I get some in the house, I will actually get a chance at them myself. I don't think anyone else likes them. So I might put some on the shopping for this week. That's chocolate covered raisins there on Wednesday, the 24th. Friday the 26th is make up your own holiday day. Yes. So there are holidays for everything. As you've realised, from this segment of the podcast, it's pretty crazy. So this is a day about creating your own special day. So think about what you want to celebrate or perhaps what cause you want to raise awareness for amongst friends and family. Now I've had a very long and hard Think about this. And I wondered what I could come up with that would make the biggest impact on the world. I did consider chocolate covered raisin lovers day. But I thought as probably a bit a bit too obvious. So I declare Friday the 26th of March is Design Better Wrap Dispensers Day. Yes, you heard it. So clingfilm, cling wrap foil dispensers. They're a major source of frustration for millions of people around the world, they cause so much suffering. We need to encourage all the world experts in design to get together and solve this issue once and for all. Now, I am going to say I know it's a bit of a cliche, but if we can land someone on the moon, why can't we make a Wrap Dispenser that doesn't break the first time you use it and it doesn't slash your fingers to shreds every time you try and use it and it doesn't cause your wife to give you a violent look every time she uses it just because you happen to have made a bit of a mess when you opened it incorrectly. And the foil comes out every time you open it and falls on the floor. And now I'm stuck with it for 75 metres 75 metres. Do you know how long that's going to take us to get through. I'm going to be getting that dirty look until Christmas. So apologies Dawn, I've set this day up just for you just to atone for my mistake with the dispenser Friday the 26th is design better wrap dispensers day and also it's makeup you're on holiday day. Wrapping up with more food Sunday, the 28th of March is something on a stick there. And this is food. It's not about putting sticks in other locations. So it's about enjoying eating food on a stick. Whether it be meat skewers, corn dogs, chocolate covered strawberries, perhaps maybe even chocolate coffee. raisins, you can go crazy. So that's Sunday the 28th something on a stick day. Thank you very much for joining me again this week. Links to all the stories are in the show notes at thank the week.com slash 19. Please continue to spread the word and tell your friends about Thank The Week and I'll see you again next week. Goodbye!

Announcer:

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