Podcasting - Everyone Should Do It

I've been podcasting with a friend.  Almost there as far as posting an launches go.  Here is our latest episode.  We're looking to join iTunes and researching other networks to gain as much distribution as we can. 

It's just two guys talking about the day and week's top subjects.  I try to focus on various social apparatuses online affect issues in general and privacy.  Here is one about Ebola and drones (mp3).

Please feel free to let us know what you think.  We're pretty green and appreciate all manners of criticism (directed at my partner if you will).

Mobile Payment: Question for MCX guys - What Happens When You Get Hacked And the Bad Guys Empty My Checking Account?

Every few weeks, you hear about this or that retailer getting hacked and millions of credit cards are stolen.  Okay, when that happens, we talk to our bank and change the numbers on the credit card or, worse, have charges reversed if we happen to be unlucky enough to have been a victim of credit card fraud. 

With the consumer-unfriendly CurrentC being developed by good folks at Walmart, Target, CVS, and a few others and slated for 2015, there is one question that has been bugging me beyond these retailers asking for very personal questions like social security numbers and sharing with each other our buying habits that has not been asked.

What happens when, not if, one or more of these retailers and "third parties" they will inevitably blame when the CurrentC system is hacked to our bank accounts?  Do we need new bank account numbers?  Change banks? 

And will will put the stolen money back in when they're emptied by these hackers?  Does anyone know? 


Sino-Russian Partnership: Don't Worry, Greed And Power Will Sink Them

China and Russia sitting under a tree.  Sure, a bit of hand-holding but I won't say there hasn't been any kisses if ever.  Bloomberg's post about Russia rushing into Chinese arms focused on what each get out of each other but you have to remember, if not for Putin's stupid adventure into the Ukraine and the resulting sanctions, this would never have happened.

And keep in mind that it isn't as if the two foes are suddenly friends.  They've got only each other left.  Put together a softening Chinese economy and a Russian recession, well, you can surmise just what might happen.  On top of that, it will make China's neighbors much more nervous and paranoid than ever before. 

Plus, as much as China will try to clamp down on brewing domestic unrest and foster nationalist sentiments and blame the US and Japan, its leadership is scared of its own people.  When the returns on this new Russian partnership doesn't work out, look for political upheaval in Beijing. By then, Putin might be gone and Russians looking back to better and more stable Western partners.

Putin's Moscow and Beijing might have similar corrupt systems of cronyism, it means eventually, pride and greed will eventually rear their ugly heads.  Distrust will return (it's unlikely that has gone away between the Chinese and Russians).

In the end, ordinary Russians will be the losers and China likely lose billions in the process. 

CurrencyC: The Mobile Payment System Supported by CVS Hacked Already

MCX, the retailer group that wants everything but your first-born from you, that is offering their own mobile payment system as an alternative to other forms of payment systems like NFC, is still months if not a whole year away from offering the dubious service.  The system, CurrenyC, is still in beta.  Neverthless, it's never too early to get hacked right?

That's exactly what happened when it informed beta testers and folks interested in the system that there was unauthorized access to their e-mails.  (Source:  Macrumors)

Given the bad press that CurrencyC is getting, I'm going to go ahead and make this prediction:  we're going to see some defections just ahead of the Christmas shopping season starts.

Mobile Payment: Retailers, Here's How To Have A Great Christmas This Year

With all the back and forth over NFC payment (I know there is a lot of attention on Apple Pay but it is more than that - it's NFC implementations like Google Wallet), here is how a retailer can do well this Christmas shopping season.  Open up a couple of checkouts just for shoppers who want to pay with the NFC-enabled mobile devices.

That's right.  It's that simple.  While many in the Apple camp like to boast about how wealthy the iPhone demographic is, Android users savvy enough to use Google Wallet probably are not doing too badly themselves.  In general, those who are likely to take up new tech features probably are smart and wealthier.  If I'm right, this is how retailers not beholden to the Merchant Customer Exchange that forbid its members from offering NFC payment options to potential customers can race ahead of the competition. 

Already, Android and iPhone fans are calling for an united front to boycott CVS and Rite Aid and there are dozens more companies that we can put the financial hurt on this Holidays season.  Savvy retailers who do offer NFC can make it easier for us and use this opportunity to capture our hard-earned money.

Offer us an exclusive checkout lane or two along with your deals, and we'd gladly spend our money at your stores.

Discovery of NFC Makes Sense: Perfect Use As a Wireless Secured Cash(less) Register

Source:  On Apple.

iFixit does a teardown of pretty much every Apple hardware that comes out.  And what they found surprised them but it makes sense for Apple to include it?  NFC in the new iPad Air 2.

Consider the importance of Apple Pay as a money printing scheme to pad Apple's Everest-like pile of cash, the iPad Air 2 and probably a future updated iPad mini sporting NFC makes it very important as a means for the tablets to serve as digital payment readers.