Rambling about work with Mike

We’re off this week, so here’s some B-roll of my recent conversation with Mike Rapin. Before we got into our chat about Video Games + Roll Playing we blew off some steam about work. Mostly complaining, but kind of interesting to hear about common problems in tech work. Hopefully it can be interesting to a broader audience too.

By the way, for other episodes featuring Mike, you can browse the Mike tag here.

Find Mike on the internet most likely under “mikerapin” and I’m easily found with “robrogan.” As usual, follow/tweet at us via @SorryTopic!

Video games + Role playing games

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This is a pretty specific episode, so feel free to skip it if RPGs and video games aren’t your thing.

Alex and Rob have been thinking about playing Elite Dangerous (that space game we’ve mentioned several times) but with a role-playing twist where we stay in character and make decisions in the game based on our character’s motivation. We’re a little stuck on how to turn this very “blank canvas” type of online game into a role playing game however. So, we’ve called in the expert, none other than… Mike Rapin! Mike will also be joining our group in the game. Maybe we’ll document some more about how figure this out together… maybe a totally new podcast just for the game.

By the way, for other episodes featuring Mike, you can browse the Mike tag here.

Find Mike on the internet most likely under “mikerapin” and I’m easily found with “robrogan.” As usual, follow/tweet at us via @SorryTopic!

Sunday hangout: gaming in the galaxy

Episode 30 of STGBOT is yet another with special guest Alex Monroe

Alex’s percussion group isn’t doing anything during quarantine. There’s a lot of work that goes into the trending zoom-music performances people might be familiar with. 

We talked about the fatigue of video chats/conferences/calls all the time and wanting to get away from the computer. 

On the other hand… we really love this game called Elite Dangerous, and then Rob offers a bit of comparison to No Man’s Sky, and the real life scientific tool called Gaia Sky

Links to the games in their respective order:

https://www.elitedangerous.com/buy/steam/elite-dangerous-cmdr-deluxe-edition

https://www.nomanssky.com/

http://gaia-sky.readthedocs.io

the lore tour Alex was talking about

Finally, if you’re bored of all those topics, skip to the 50 minute mark where we have questions for YOU, listener. Email Rob your responses. 

Sunday hangout: a boring, technical episode

Yeah being honest here. Alex and Rob just talk about computer specifications for about an hour as Rob just purchased a fully-upgraded iMac and Alex debates getting a new laptop or desktop.

Feel free to skip this one.

In the mean time!! Send us a tweet already 😉

Sunday hangout: Movie Music, The Revenant

The Revenant: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack is a soundtrack album for the 2015 film, The Revenant, composed by Ryuichi Sakamoto and Alva Noto with additional music by Bryce Dessner.

Source: The Revenant (Soundtrack) wikipedia

In this episode, Alex and Rob discuss the music from The Revenant. It’s minimal, but intense. Spartan, necessary, and profound.

See also: Ryuichi Sakamoto: Coda (imdb link)

Let us know what you think of this new venture! We might spawn off a new podcast along these lines. We’d also like to hear any requests of something to watch/listen to next time.

robrogan [at] gmail.com or @sorrytopic on Twitter, and of course our Telegram group!

Sunday hangout: Classic games, Star Wars

Alex and Rob talk about some games they’ve loved in the past because Rob started playing Diablo III again.

Have you played Age of Empires? It’s one of our favorites.

Later we get on the topic of Star Wars and some of the story lines we might be missing (or could see in the future).

Finally, we hit on an idea for a new podcast that we’ll experiment with here. Alex and Rob will watch a movie and then have a discussion about the soundtrack and its composer!

Next Sunday Hangout will be about The Revenant.

Sunday hangout: teaching, tea, & tech debate

Hi everyone, no notes today because… I’m lazy.

If you’d like notes, or they are helpful to you, let us know and I’ll do better next time!

-Rob

Sunday hangout: starting a business, future music, & tech stuff

Alex and Rob got together again on Sunday afternoon to catch up and just talk about whatever is on their minds.

Unavoidably, the first bit is about Coronavirus news impacting all of our lives. If you’ve had enough of that, feel free to skip up to 6 minutes, because there’s an update about Josh and COVID-19.

After that bit, you can also skip ahead to about 19 minutes where we get into the meat of the discussion.

Alex is the co-founder of Beyond This Point, a non-profit experimental percussion group. Rob asks about how you actually start something like that, and more broadly how a non-profit works.

A Buddhist monk that left his friend hangin… leads to a longer discussion about movie endings that leave you hanging (often for a good reason).

Can you think of examples where the future of music is represented in film? Usually science fiction speculates on the future of technology, social norms, and even fashion, but is it impossible to create speculative/futuristic music?

Sunday hangout: let’s try to talk about something else

A few minutes in the beginning Rob shares how this pandemic is taking a toll on him, but this doesn’t need to be a downer episode!

Alex and Rob talk about remote work, the pros and cons of it, and how he is adapting to teaching music online and being creative with a virtual group of people.

Rob talks about his affinity for all kinds of technology that creates a sense of shared space, like Zoom, Echo Show with a faraway friend, and other tools.

We ponder about how else these drastic times might create a positive culture shift.

Links to specific apps and sites mentioned:

Zoom

Houseparty

Berlin Philharmonic – Digital Concert Hall (giving free membership if signing up before March 31)

IDAGIO (has free plan)

*Note if you are using Spotify, they don’t support links. Either try a “real” podcast app, or visit our site:

https://joshandrob.com

Also feel free to say hello to @sorrytopic on Twitter, or maybe we can all Zoom together!

Swedish rock, Spotify, & siri shortcuts

Rob chats with a friend and old co-worker, Chris Castaneda. You can hear his whole backstory in an episode of Letters, which will be featured on Sorry to get back on topic very soon. Until then, here’s the site for the Letters episode.*

In this episode we talk about design jobs for a bit, but don’t worry, we also get into our changing music preferences, making music as a hobby, and reminiscing about the old Spotify app. 

Chris uses Alexa to help him record covers of Swedish rock, which got us talking about smart home devices, and some pro-user features of iOS like Apple Shortcuts. Rob might have been a little too honest in automating his marriage 😛 

*After talking to Spotify last week, we learned that they don’t support html links in show descriptions. You have to type out the actual URL, like this http://letters.robrogan.com for it to be clickable on Spotify. In general, I think Spotify is trash for podcasts, but I try to make our show available on any platform. On the bright side, I think we get zero listens from that platform, so you should be good to go with Apple or Overcast or whatever you like.