Episode 493: Midlife Revelation

This episode contains: We’re recording just after Valentine’s Day. Sorry, we didn’t get you anything, EXCEPT FOR THIS PODCAST! Ben was a bit disappointed in Valentine’s Day this year… he’s also working on “not wasting his midlife crisis.” He chats about layoffs and opportunities and productivity, but Steven thinks that perhaps Ben’s having a midlife revelation. Ben’s reading The 4-Hour Workweek by Timothy Ferris. Steven and Devon have been managing democracy in HELLDIVERS 2. Devon doesn’t know how to define video games, or perhaps he knows too much how to define video games. HELLDIVERS is pretty much the video game equivalent of Starship Troopers, with all the satire involved. Steven also really enjoyed Blue Eyed Samurai on Netflix. Not science fiction, but it’s worth your time. Guess what? Ben’s dental company had a major data breach. It’s time to freeze your credit FOR FREE at the following addresses to to avoid ID theft:

Unless you’re planning on taking out a new credit card or buying anything in the next few days, you should freeze your credit. If they are asking you for money, you’re in the wrong place. It took Ben 15 minutes to do it, big thanks to password managers. Ben is now the Credit Score Fairy.


This Week on the Internet: Not all TLDs are Created Equal. In light of the recent cancellation of the queer.af domain registration by the Taliban, the fragile and difficult nature of country-code top-level domains (ccTLDs) has once again been comprehensively demonstrated. When the United Kingdom decided to leave the European Union, it fell foul of the EU’s rules for the registration of domains under the “eu” ccTLD. To register (and maintain) a domain name ending in .eu, you have to be a resident of the EU. When the UK ceased to be part of the EU, residents of the UK were no longer EU residents, and lost their .eu domain names. Also, after Russia invaded Ukraine in February 2022, the Ukranian Vice Prime Minister asked ICANN to suspend ccTLDs associated with Russia. While ICANN said that it wasn’t going to do that (they should change their name to ICANT), because it wouldn’t do anything useful, some domain registrars (the companies you pay to register domain names) ceased to deal in Russian ccTLDs, and some websites restricted links to domains with Russian ccTLDs. Generic TLDs (gTLDs) like .com, .net, .gov and other really cool new gTLDs like .rocks, .ninja, and .supplies are far better to register.



This Week in Space: Tiny moon of Saturn holds young ocean beneath icy shell. Saturn’s moon Mimas harbors a global ocean beneath its icy shell, discovered through analysis of its orbit by Cassini spacecraft data. This ocean formed just 5-15 million years ago, making Mimas a prime candidate for studying early ocean formation and potential for life. This discovery suggests life-essential conditions might exist on seemingly inactive moons, expanding our search for life beyond Earth. Guess where else we’ve discovered oceans? Devon says “Earth.” Ben knows he got that info from SeaQuest DSV. Saturns rings may have always been there for us, but what have they done for us lately?



Patreon-only mid-pod: Ben has changed his note taking game, using Obsidian. Steven has rewatched Deadpool and Deadpool 2. Will X-Men 97 be terrible or radical?


Science Fiction Book Club: This week we’re doing a spoiler-filled review of the novella Emergency Skin by N.K. Jemisin. An explorer returns to gather information from a climate-ravaged Earth that his ancestors, and others among the planet’s finest, fled centuries ago. The mission comes with a warning: a graveyard world awaits him. But so do those left behind—hopeless and unbeautiful wastes of humanity who should have died out eons ago. After all this time, there’s no telling how they’ve devolved. Steel yourself, soldier. Get in. Get out. And try not to stare.


TLDR: Ben and Steven loved it, but Devon was a little lukewarm and wished it was longer and more nuanced.

Next week in the Science Fiction Book Club we’ll discuss Randomize by Andy Weir. Get it for free if you have Amazon Prime and be informed for next week’s discussion: https://www.amazon.com/Randomize-Forward-collection-Andy-Weir-ebook/dp/B07VDJBKNJ