show episodes
 
Join the brightest SolarWinds minds and IT industry influencers, as they cut through the jargon and give you the tools you need to grow and keep your tech knowledge razor-sharp. Come with questions—leave with actionable steps and practical insights. Have ideas for future episodes or topics? Tweet us @ SolarWinds using #TechPod.
 
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show series
 
A good DBA is hard to find. This is because a good DBA wears many hats, often equating to 3 – 4 full time jobs. How can this be achieved or sustained? The secret is automation, and automation is also the reason the DBA is disappearing. In this final episode of our three-part series exploring the disappearing DBA, Head Geeks Thomas LaRock and Kevin …
 
This week we're thankful for our listeners and the many questions they provided to this Q&A ep, which got us talking about topics including how we research a new tech project before diving in, using VR to desensitize yourself to real motion sickness, the ravages of space on the human body, the .png pronunciation, a deep dive on stuffing recipes, an…
 
This week Apple announced an effort to begin offering service manuals, replacement parts, and other self-repair services to its customers. Who better to discuss this landmark move than iFixit CEO and right-to-repair advocate Kyle Wiens? Kyle joins us to talk about his DIY repair efforts over the years, what opening up your own iPhone will be like, …
 
We've been holding video game controllers for most of our natural lives, and now we're attempting to put them in a qualitative, ordered list; a sort of "ranking," if you will. In this ep, we go decade by decade, from the NES to today, considering the technical innovations, ergonomics, fit and finish, historical influence, and general usability of o…
 
Being in IT as part of the armed services is a different type of work experience than the private sector, with military values, culture, and restrictions blending to create a unique type of IT experience. In this Veteran’s Day episode of SolarWinds® TechPod™, Head Geek™ Leon Adato is joined by Marlys (Marcie) May, VP of Service Delivery at Atlantic…
 
By the time you hear this ep, Daylight Savings Time will have departed for another year, so DST is naturally what we're chatting about this week. We clear up some myths and history about DST's origins, talk about the axial tilt of the planet a bunch, swap tips about time changes and home automation, look at DST's relative safety and economic effect…
 
In this episode of TechPod, George Westerman and Head Geek™ Thomas LaRock discuss digital transformation, how to build the culture necessary for change, and where workplace learning has fallen short. George Westerman is a senior lecturer at the MIT Sloan School of Management and a principal research scientist, J-WEL Workforce Learning. George works…
 
It's the most horrifying Q&A episode we've ever recorded! This month we field Qs about such topics as: how to teach your kids to view Internet content and influencers with a critical eye, our home electronics protocols for going out of town, essential gadgets we just can't bring ourselves to splurge on, listening to podcasts at super speed, and our…
 
William Hurley (or “whurley” as he prefers to be called) is a philanthropist, entrepreneur, and open-source advocate, whose work at Apple, IBM, and in the area of quantum computing is world-renowned. Picking up where we left off in part 1, SolarWinds Head Geek Leon Adato and whurley explore a range of topics – everything from the state of the tech …
 
Will's daughter recently had her first encounter with a corded telephone, which got us thinking about other technologies that are on the way out or have already vanished from society. In this ep we touch on a wide range of aspects of the old phone system, what things were like before every product had a barcode on it, whether we're trending toward …
 
William Hurley (or “whurley” as he prefers to be called) is a philanthropist, entrepreneur, and open-source advocate, who’s achieved what many geeks only dream of, including critically recognized work at Apple, IBM, and CERN. He’s started and sold businesses; invented, invested, published, advised, and mentored. Currently, he’s best known his thoug…
 
It's been nine years since Will's last big house cleanup, and the time has come once again to discuss... THE PURGE (of all his stuff). In the interest of general decluttering, this ep is a rambling consideration of such topics as: What should you do with all your fancy Lego builds? Is it better to hoard stuff, or data? Can you dig a basement under …
 
Well, this was one heck of a week. On Monday, Facebook experienced a historic outage of its infrastructure that impacted services used by billions of people. On Tuesday, a new Windows came out. On Wednesday, Twitch disclosed one of the largest data breaches in years, maybe ever. We were duty-bound to talk through our view on all these momentous eve…
 
Will Smith, this is your life! Or at least one month of it, specifically November 2009, when you published an issue of Maximum PC that included a review of Windows 7, speculation about ray tracing in video games, a breathless report about absolutely enormous 160GB SSDs, and other historical curiosities. With Windows 11 looming, we thought it would …
 
The DBA role is complex. Pitfalls exist everywhere you turn, and it can be difficult to survive and thrive. On this episode of TechPod, we'll help accidental DBAs become a DBA survivors with career advice from SolarWinds Head Geeks Thomas LaRock and Kevin Kline as well as Denny Cherry, CEO and founder, Denny Cherry & Associates. This podcast is pro…
 
Our monthly Q&A episode is all over the place in September, addressing such wide-ranging subjects as the fastest Internet we've ever used, surviving bear attacks, why they're so stingy with the USB-C ports, when exactly the week begins and ends, and a housewares block including electric kettles, cleaning bathrooms, letting go of boxes, and a debate…
 
Health science writer and noted swole woman Casey Johnston joins us this week to talk about the convergence of exercise and strength training, food science, mobile tech, and the Internet. What's a healthy way to track your fitness progress without staring at numbers all day? How much commitment does it take to lift weights, really? Is food good? (H…
 
Lesley Carhart is recognized as one of the leading voices in digital forensics and cybersecurity. But her career began – and is still firmly rooted – with her service in the Guard and Reserves. She devotes a significant amount of time to helping others make the transition into tech, both within the armed services and as part of their transition to …
 
Bang for the buck! There's no greater feeling than finding that one product that's way, way better than it should be for the price--or modifying it yourself to eke out that extra little bit of worth. In this episode we reminisce about some of the best tech scores we can remember, from venerable overclockers like the Celeron 300A and Duron 600 to hu…
 
This week we're joined by Google's director of open source, Chris DiBona, to talk all things software licensing. Topics include corporate sponsorship of open source developers, how Google maintains license compliance across all its projects, what the ramifications of Oracle's long-running Java lawsuit could have been, why there isn't more open sour…
 
The tech industry is booming, and there are many opportunities to transition from other career paths – or to change your path within tech. Join Head Geek™ Chrystal Taylor as she chats with tech professionals Ivan Bravo, Paul Guido, Jake Muszynski, and Marc Netterfield as they share their tech origin stories and discuss the challenges and benefits o…
 
On this month's Q&A ep, we debut some wild new cold-open technology, and then get on with the business of addressing subjects like the future of movie theaters, putting OnlyFans on the block chain, WinAmp memories, our current thoughts on smart watches, the explosion of new web and mobile tech around 2010 (and our fondness for WebOS), the ease of s…
 
This week we recorded a grab bag about some disruptive current events going on in various tech spaces. Intel is finally making a real push into the GPU space, and also getting excited about the angstrom. OnlyFans has abruptly shut out the sex workers it built its business on, while placing the blame on moralizing payment processors. And Facebook is…
 
Drama alert! Our long-promised scene drama episode (vol. 1) is here to explore community kerfuffles new and old, with conversations about Ubiquiti's no-good-very-bad week, pfSense's self-immolation via buggy Wireguard commit, Linksys' ancient violations of the GPL, illicit binaries, warring office-furniture companies, petty domain hijacking, and wh…
 
We recently found a Hackers-sized hole in Brad's filmgoing history, so we're killing two birds with one stone this week by making him watch the movie, and then recording an ep about it! Join us for a chat about this campy cult classic as we consider chunky laptops, cornball effects shots, teen-movie clichés, a star-studded cast, the presentation of…
 
Question time is here again, and this month our answers address topics like these: why anyone is still using big ol' ATX, our favorite flea market finds of the past, drop shadows under mouse cursors, extremely frivolous 3D printing projects, the mysteries of random Bluetooth interference, and the puny little billionaires who couldn't even manage to…
 
While it may not be circled in red on many people’s calendars, SysAdmin Day holds a special place in the hearts of many IT professionals. Certainly, because everyone likes to be appreciated for what they do, but more so because SysAdmin day is a chance for tech practitioners not only to recognize and celebrate, but to also shine a light on the work…
 
Ever wonder what it's like to try your hand at small-batch manufacturing overseas? Keyboardio's Jesse Vincent joins us this week to address that very subject in a broad discussion of his company's history, with a focus on the trials and tribulations of getting a hardware startup off the ground, setting up production-line tooling in China, being on …
 
Automation has been a disaster for the traditional database administration (DBA) role. As more systems and processes are automated away with code, the need for DBAs decreases. In time, the role of a DBA may disappear altogether. This ongoing series will examine who DBAs are, what they do, and where they'll go once their job has been replaced by a h…
 
We enjoyed Will's birth-year episode so much a few weeks ago that we're back with a look at the notable events in tech, science, and culture of 1979 now that it's Brad's turn. Slap this tape in your Walkman and listen to us prattle about CompuServe's origins in the life insurance industry, C++, events in nuclear energy (and weapons), the debut of t…
 
This week we're joined by Will's friend Ben Brown, longtime online software developer, to talk about the Internet old and new. Topics include Ben's grassroots efforts to resurrect the Finger protocol, rooting around in 1977-era Unix source code, why the tech industry keeps reinventing the same features over and over, reading 'zines over Telnet, the…
 
You knew we couldn't resist doing a Windows 11 episode, and indeed we're here to talk about the whole shebang: virtualized security and the controversy around CPU support, the good (better window-snapping!), the bad (bottom-only taskbar!), and the ugly (rounded corners!?) of the new UI, the ol' Trusted Platform Module, Microsoft Store revenue chang…
 
CDW Technology Vice President and Chief Information Security Officer Ruben Chacon, SolarWinds® CISO and VP, Security Tim Brown, and SolarWinds Head Geek™ Thomas LaRock talk about what CISO need to know to face today’s escalating cybersecurity threats – and what it’s like to be in the “hot seat” when challenges inevitably arise. This podcast is prov…
 
This month's Q&A episode features Qs (from both email and our Discord) that got us chatting about such topics as: the ARPANET, passive-aggressive email signatures, pre-microprocessor computing history, battery management in devices you never use, corporate-mandated brand pronunciations, why video conferencing is merely "good enough," how we've navi…
 
Paul Guido has worn several hats during his IT journey. But now he’s made the leap from deep-dive individual contributor to managing teams of the same kind of IT pros he was (and still is). There are lessons in that journey – not just for IT practitioners considering the next step of their career, but also managers who came to the job from a differ…
 
id Software's Quake came out 25 years ago this week, and it also changed both of our lives. In this episode we wax nostalgic about the astonishing legacy of technical innovations Quake brought to game design, the ways it inspired our fascination with everything from client/server networking to NeXT workstations, the communities and studios that spr…
 
It's been a big week around these parts--Will helped reveal a new game at E3, and Brad helped launch a new online media property--so we did a potpourri episode touching on a bunch of the technical details of working on these projects, including: Will's embrace of git, how to positively influence Internet behavior, Microsoft's open-source moves, whe…
 
Reinstalling Windows: no one enjoys it, but everyone has to do it eventually. This week, we spend some time chatting about the ways this timeless ritual has gotten better (or worse) over the years, strategies for making the process as painless as possible, some of the unique things we do to customize a fresh install, and a lot more. Also: tune in f…
 
If you're looking for our monthly Q&A ep, you've found it! This time around we consider such listener-provided topics as questionable soap-on-soap interactions, discerning frame rate by eye, dot-com-era layoffs, the legacy and contemporary influence of Neuromancer, software broadcast over the radio, and HDMI over, uh, coat hangers? Support the Pod!…
 
Hang around with IT folks for anything longer than your typical stand-up meeting and you’re likely to hear some variation of “Managers! Am I right?” Snark aside, as folks who design, deploy, and maintain monitoring solutions, we’ve got a choice: we can continue to dismiss and diminish people who don’t know about our discipline; or we can take the t…
 
Spurred by Will's first month with a Chevy Bolt, we present an episode on electric cars and attempt to answer questions such as: How weird is it to drive without braking? Can you check the car's battery health like it's a phone? What's the public charging situation like these days? How many EVs are out there, anyway? Should your car really have the…
 
In honor of Will's birthday, this week we traveled back to the heady days of 1975 to see what was big in science and tech in the year of his birth. Our impromptu retrospective features everything from the Altair 8800 to Space Mountain, the Homebrew Computer Club, the Apollo/Soyuz handshake in space, Benoit Mandelbrot, Jaws, Betamax, and a little hi…
 
Very special guest Vinny Caravella joins us this week for a wide-ranging chat about his years of video production, juggling cameras in the early days of Whiskey Media, a love letter to analog signals, the infamous List of Terminated HDMI Adopters, a consideration of codecs and protocols past and present, and more. From logging tapes to crimping SDI…
 
Six-ish months since launch, the next-gen consoles are now officially current-gen, so we thought it was time for a check-in on the state of the PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X platforms. How has the user experience matured so far? What system software issues are still lingering? When will games start shipping at 30Hz? Will they ever be easy to actu…
 
What drives technology innovation? In the second part of our conversation with Dr. Robert Metcalfe, the co-founder of Ethernet and internet pioneer explains the relationship between innovation and freedom/prosperity, the importance of fostering an environment for technology innovation, and why he’d like to be known as more than “the father of Ether…
 
Dr. Robert Metcalfe is arguably one of the most influential pioneers of modern technology. In this episode of TechPod, the award-winning engineer relives the critical events that led to the invention of Ethernet and the development of Metcalfe’s Law. He also discusses the difference between invention and innovation, driving adoption of new technolo…
 
Email time! In this month's Q&A, we talk about Spring cleaning and strategies for organizing electronics with limited storage space, overusing ellipses and other Internet chat habits, long-lost Usenet posts, the great turn-of-the-century capacitor calamity, a mea culpa and backgrounder on the McDonald's coffee lawsuit, and more. Check out Gretchen …
 
Kishore Hari--Tested.com correspondent, noted science communicator, and steak-product connoisseur--rejoins us for a check-in on the state of the COVID-19 pandemic one year after his first appearance. Topics include where we're at with vaccination rates and efficacy, outreach efforts to combat vaccine skepticism, the pause on the Johnson & Johnson s…
 
Ultra-wideband support has been making its way into phones for a couple of years now, but... what the heck is it? This week we attempt to demystify this old wireless technology being adapted for modern devices, including its potential for very fine location tracking, why nobody is using it much (yet), whether it could replace Bluetooth, what effect…
 
The recent SUNBURST cyberattack reveals new threats to the supply chains fueling today’s businesses. SolarWinds® and FireEye have raised the alarm for leaders everywhere to reexamine their security, to prepare for threats, and to raise the standards of the supply chains on which they rely. Join this episode of TechPod for a compelling discussion be…
 
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