Tuesday, July 16, 2024
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Surface Pro and Laptop Copilot+ Q&A

It’s been a quiet week of news, but we’ve been feverishly testing Microsoft’s new Surface Pro and Surface Laptop Copilot+ AI PCs. In this episode, Devindra and Sam will answer your questions about Microsoft’s new hardware, and we’ll deliver some of our first impressions. It turns out Microsoft may have finally gotten Windows on Arm support right! And some of the Copilot+ AI features are actually useful, surprisingly enough. But we’ll have to wait a few months to test out the controversial Recall feature, which was pulled from the Copilot+ launch.


Listen below or subscribe on your podcast app of choice. If you’ve got suggestions or topics you’d like covered on the show, be sure to email us or drop a note in the comments! And be sure to check out our other podcast, Engadget News!

  • Dev and Sam’s first thoughts and an AMA on the Surface Pro and Surface Laptop Copilot+ AI PCs – 1:05

  • News from Nintendo direct: The Legend of Zelda: Echoes of Wisdom, Mario, and finally, Metroid Prime 4 – 25:46

  • Former OpenAI chief scientist launches Safe Superintelligence, inc – 35:02

  • Wired report: AI search engine Perplexity is ignoring robots.txt guidelines – 37:36

  • Listener question: What do you do with 8 gig fiber home internet? – 41:08

  • Working on – 46:51

  • Pop culture picks – 48:09

Hosts: Devindra Hardawar and Sam Rutherford
Producer: Ben Ellman
Music: Dale North and Terrence O’Brien

Devindra: (00:00:00) What’s up, Internet, and welcome back to the Engadget Podcast. I’m Senior Editor Devindra Hardawar. Joining me today is Senior Writer from Engadget, Sam Rutherford. Hey, Sam. Hey, how you doing? I’m doing okay because we finally have some Copilot Plus PCs. Sam has the Surface Laptop, I have the Surface Pro.

And we’ve just started testing these things. They came in late and we’re just like trying to get Arubia as quickly as we can for both of us, but we’ve got some impressions here. We’re going to be taking some questions from our live stream. So that’s the first step, a special episode for us.

Cause it’s a pretty light news week, but yeah, if you join us Thursday mornings, around 10 30 AM Eastern on our YouTube channel. You too can participate and ask us questions. See us show off some gadgets. We’ll show off some stuff live from the Surface Pro. So if you’re listening to this in audio form, go back and watch the video, cause you can actually see us test out some features and show off the hardware too.

As always folks, if you’re enjoying this podcast, please subscribe to us in iTunes or your podcatcher of choice, leave us a review in iTunes. That’s always super helpful and drop us (00:01:00)an email at podcast at engadget. com. Question for you, Sam, what was your first impression upon tearing open the Surface Laptop?

Sam: Right away I think it’s good they didn’t mess with the design. The design was never the issue for the Surfaces, they’re, very beautifully crafted. And, opening up and this is going to sound like silly, but it’s it functioned exactly like a windows 11 laptop is supposed to.

It just works. Yeah. Yeah. It just worked. And that was like, Hey, this is actually an improvement from, previous attempts at windows on arm right away. It seems like they, Microsoft has nailed all the important aspects. Battery life so far seems very good. Performance is very smooth.

I’m still wanting to test, how far you can push it, but what Qualcomm has been saying about the Snapdragon X elite chip. It seems a lot more believable. I have, a lot more faith in this new chip than previous, the 8cx versions of that. And yeah, it seems like maybe Microsoft and Qualcomm had really put it all together for, this new attempt at really (00:02:00) pushing Windows on ARM.

Devindra: I feel the same way, right? Like I just got done basically doing a quick review of the Surface Pro 10 for business, which is Was just a straight up chip upgrade over the Surface Pro 9 stuff. And I was reminded, I like the way the Surface Pro feels, but there’s so many things that annoy me about it.

Like the kickstand and everything that’s all still here on the new Surface Pro, but there are a few things that make this whole experience a lot better. First of all, you feel that this chipset, I have the Snapdragon X Elite in mind, is just fast. It feels like when I first started testing the M series MacBooks, like the MacBook Air and the first MacBook Pros that had it.

Everything is fast. Everything is zippy. It boots up quickly. It certainly wakes up from sleep almost instantly. Which is nice. Battery life looks really good. And I think mostly coming I feel so burned, Sam, having reviewed the Surface Pro 9 with 5G with that weird, like the 8CX chip. Or even the

Sam: Surface Pro X before that was supposed to be like a really big coming out.

And that thing did not deliver.

Devindra: The Surface Pro X, you should go back, check out Sherilyn’s review of that thing. But that was like (00:03:00) Microsoft’s big design push. Hey, we have thinner bezels. We have a thinner machine running on this ARM chip. But it was a disaster. Because for years, Microsoft has done a bad job of making Windows actually work well on ARM and the chips themselves weren’t that fast to I did you ever play with the Surface RT, Sam?

The first Surface they ever launched? Yeah. That I remember after the launch event, like this seemed like a really cool idea, kickstand hybrid tablet laptop PC, but the Surface RT was a disaster because it ran a really limited version of Windows RT. And the app ecosystem

Sam: wasn’t there.

There was no

Devindra: app ecosystem, right? It couldn’t run any older apps. There was no emulation. There wasn’t even emulation. I think when the surface pro X launched and then they eventually added that, but it wasn’t very good. Like even with the the last pro nine, five G everything felt slow. Even running Chrome felt crummy.

Like you could feel the

Sam: system crawl. If you were doing something, it wasn’t native to arm.

Devindra: It just felt like I’m using a bad, slow computer. And worst of all, for that computer, you also have to pay like an extra 300, 400 bucks to get it over the typical surface pro. So (00:04:00) good news, this surface pro works really well.

The Hardaware is still good. Like I’m still amazed what they can fit into the surface, the size of a surface case, because it’s a full PC, it’s, it feels more impressive to me than even what Apple can do with an iPad or something, because those are, I guess now it’s the same because this is a mobile chip too.

But. Just Hardaware wise, it still feels more impressive to me. And the thing, I think what I noticed, Sam is like none of the AI features feel like the actual things I’m loving about this machine. It’s more that it’s fast. It’s running all the apps I’m used to. I don’t really have to deal with much incompatibility.

There is some though, like you noticed League does launch at all.

Sam: Yeah. One of the, I play, League of Legends with my wife pretty frequently. So that’s one of the first things I tried installing. And it’s really frustrating because you can go through, you can install League just fine.

It installs normally, even though it’s definitely not an ARM native game. And then when you try to actually play, you (00:05:00) can’t. And it’s not because League itself doesn’t run. It’s because Riot’s anti cheat system, Vanguard, needs kernel level support. So they asked you, hey, go restart your system so it can install the Riot anti cheat.

And. You restart it and then you can go play and it tells you to restart the thing because the anti cheat doesn’t work. They

Devindra: can’t touch this kernel

Sam: basically. And it’s so frustrating because this is more of a like a sad situation for riot than Microsoft, because they, and they implemented the system within the last two or three months.

And so it’s like they implemented the system. It doesn’t support the new chip architecture. And so you have a system that has enough power to run it. It should run great, and even in emulation, it should be just fine, but because of Riot’s anti cheat system, it doesn’t work, and this is actually something that, a lot of games with anti cheat protocols are gonna suffer from more of your competitive games I think you mentioned Fortnite doesn’t quite work right either?

Fortnite

Devindra: doesn’t work at all Sam, there was a story yesterday (00:06:00)from the Wall Street Journal that Samsung put a warning up on its website about Copilot Plus PCs, that Fortnite won’t even launch. But this was a known thing. Fortnite does not support ARM processors on Windows because you have to run it through the Epic launcher and it’s also using anti cheat and it doesn’t even try to launch.

It’s just Hey, we don’t support Windows on ARM. Sorry. So that’s a big deal. Certainly for people who play those games, that stuff can be updated. Like those developers maybe Epic will. Play nice with this stuff eventually, but there were also reports that some Adobe apps also don’t launch.

So there is still some of that, but I think at least from my typical workflow I was launching like most of the apps I use really it’s only Evernote is the one that’s emulated from X 86, everything else, like Spotify, Slack, and all those. Yep.

Sam: The big apps, even, Photoshop, Lightroom, those are supported.

All of your major stuff just seems to play pretty nicely, and even when it’s not native, it still seems to run pretty fast.

Devindra: It feels pretty good. And I did try out some of the AI features as well. The big one, of course, recall (00:07:00) was recalled by Microsoft because of glaring security holes that everybody questioned them about.

And that’s the reason why

Sam: we’re playing catch up on the reviews is that they, they made some changes to recall. It’s now only gonna be available if you’re a windows insider I believe is what, at least initially. And so that’s

Devindra: from now too. It’s not even soon. Yeah.

Yeah. We have not had a chance to test recall. I did see the hands on stuff with it and it looked fine, but that security stuff. It’s like what we were talking about with Apple’s intelligence. All those announcements like Apple at least thought a little harder about privacy and actual concerns people would have that security professionals would have.

And Microsoft just like totally, they were just like empty brain over here, like with a lot of these potential issues. So I did try out the co create feature, which I’ll demo on the live stream in a bit. Which where you can do a little doodle and then type some text and it’ll make some images for you.

It’s fine. Like it’s the images aren’t that great. Honestly, it’s not as GPT. And I’m still left with the questions. What the hell do I do with this thing? It’s not like (00:08:00) the Genmoji stuff that Apple is showing off where you’re like, Oh, you can make a fun thing based on a friend’s face and have a yeast for it.

It’s just like a crummy AI picture. Okay, fine.

Sam: To me, it feels like more of a bonus. And there’s all, there’s some weird situations where there’s a new feature called image creator. And it’s available in paint, but if I go and look at it in paint, I’m looking at it right now. It doesn’t work. It doesn’t work for me.

It doesn’t work. And then there’s also like a counter, like you can only use so many prompts and I’m seeing that go down, but I’m pressing it and the results are weird. But the, it, the funny thing is that if you go into the photos app, there’s also a tab for image creator and it works way better in the photos app than it doesn’t paint, which is and it doesn’t seem to be like there’s a token limit for the version in photos.

And so it’s all there’s some weird just like incongruities where you have the same thing. It’s got the same name, but they work differently depending on which app you’re using it in. And that’s a little weird.

Devindra: That’s a clear, like a sign that this is all coming in hot. And then Microsoft was really working on this stuff very recently.

(00:09:00) And to Microsoft’s credit, like there

Sam: is a big, like yellow preview tag on the button. Sure. So yes, it’s very clear that this is still like a, work in progress.

Devindra: It’s just, it’s a weird thing to see on like shipping Hardaware. Like it’s like the Gmail beta label, which was, and Google did that for a lot of its products.

Hey there may be issues, but we were testing out some new stuff here in Windows. It feels like a bit of a cop out, I guess if it worked better, I’d have less of a problem with it. The one I really liked, I don’t know if you’ve tried live captions yet, Sam, but that is a really cool feature where once you enable it, your computer will just say, basically caption any video that’s playing and in many cases translate.

Language to English. The translation stuff is okay. It’s it reads like bad subtitles to me. Cause I was playing some anime videos and like comparing subtitles to the like incoming translation and it was really messy at times. It’s not like a miracle product, but it is cool. It’s really for people with hearing impairments.

I do think that’ll be a really, and you can

Sam: often get just enough from those transcriptions or other translations (00:10:00)that you can at least understand what’s going on. It’s not going to be super elegant, you’re getting the basics down, mostly correct.

Devindra: Yeah. So I’m working on my review of this thing.

I’ve tried Oh, I did one benchmark that I was able to run. I don’t know if you saw the score, Sam. But can you pop over to our benchmark database? Just look at the score I put down for the, for PCMark10 on this thing. And tell me what you think about that.

Sam: If that’s the case, that’s double pretty much anything else that we’ve tested recently.

Or maybe not between 50 percent and double double the score.

Devindra: The score is 12, 615 points in PCMark10. The fastest PC I’ve seen this year, which was the framework Laptop 16, which ran a really hot rise chip was 8,129. So this Surface Pro got a higher PC Mark 10 score than any laptop we’ve seen this year and by a significant margin by over 50%.

That’s wild. I did double check like Qualcomm’s what they were expecting from when they initially announced the Snap drug and (00:11:00) next leap. Yeah. And that’s that’s pretty on target for what they were in. That’s insane to have that come out of the super thin laptop tablet hybrid.

I’d love to see you glad that like

Sam: those numbers are living up to the claims because that was the big thing is like Qualcomm was talking a huge game about, Hey, we have these new Orion architecture, we bought a company a couple years ago to completely read change how we build laptop chips for arm.

And so it’s really good to see, Hey, Qualcomm did it.

Devindra: They totally did. What was the name of the company that they bought? Was it it wasn’t Nuvia. I think Nuvia. Nuvia sounds right. Yeah. I’m trying to look it up now, but yeah, that was a big deal for them because it felt like they were also really limited by what ARM was giving them.

And Nuvia, I believe also comes from some like Apple Silicon former Apple Silicon engineers. So like some of that ingenuity that went into the A series chips and the early M series chips is also. happening over here and you can feel it. It’s one of those things where it’s as (00:12:00) soon as you like, start this thing up and start poking around, like it just feels fast.

So this isn’t just synthetic benchmarks, like being blown up. So I’m excited by this. Yeah. I

Sam: can’t confirm it was Nuvia and that acquisition was finalized back in 2021. Hasn’t been that long from, That acquisition to okay coming out with a retail product.

Devindra: So early impressions, very good, very fast, good benches.

Also I’ll mention this quickly. I got the surface flex keyboard with this and that’s the one where you can actually remove it from the surface pro and still like type wirelessly. And that does alleviate. Some of my problems with working with the surface pro in general, like it’s I’m so tired of having the kickstand on my lap because I have dents on my legs from testing so many services and it’s uncomfortable.

It doesn’t. It’s not a great typing experience, but putting the surface on a table and having the keyboard in my lap. I was doing that yesterday. It just felt like it felt comfortable. Life changing, and something you can do with tablets already. That’s not exactly a new thing, but to have that capability, (00:13:00) like baked into the surface, that’s nice.

I wish this keyboard were cheaper. I believe it’s 350. So like it is the price of the base iPad. And that doesn’t include the

Sam: pen. If you want the pen, you’re looking at 450 ish.

Devindra: As always, this stuff is way too expensive for Microsoft and they should just put it together. Especially now, because there is no tablet mode in Windows 11.

I was trying to hook around to find it and they basically just gave up on that. It is really weird to sell a Surface as a tablet, not include a keyboard, and then be like it’s a full PC, right? It’s a PC tablet. Except even you don’t support tablet software very much or very well anymore.

But anyway, my first impressions are good. Anything else you want to add about the Surface laptop, Sam?

Sam: No, I’m just, really excited to see how Microsoft can take it from there and how, the big issue is that like a lot of companies, weren’t supporting ARM the way that it really needed to be, at least from a consumer side.

So I’m really interested to see how that Hey, we have the Hardaware. We have great devices. Now, how are developers going to respond to supporting arm on windows? Because (00:14:00)Microsoft doesn’t really have that like iron clad thing that Apple does was like, Hey, we are changing architectures, you do this, or we’re not going to support you.

And In some ways that makes, Apple had a much cleaner transition because they have that iron hand on the ecosystem. Whereas, Microsoft is a little bit, less pushy when it comes to, these big transitions.

Devindra: Yeah. We’ve talked about this before. Like Apple, Apple is such a, it’s a tight ship that runs the software.

The Hardaware has a full chain and also now the processor is they go wherever they want to go and everybody has to follow them. Whereas Microsoft is okay, guys, are we gonna, what’s, what do you got today? Arm? You got these chips and then what can we do to get you

Sam: on board?

Devindra: Yeah. And then okay, who’s going to build machines for Oh, only surface, only our surface team are making chips or laptops with these systems.

Okay. Windows software side. Are you ready to support this? They shrug their shoulders. So like it is so many. So many things have to align for this to work really well on the PC side. And I think four years after Apple Silicon debuted, it seems like we’re (00:15:00)there. I’ve also seen the reviews of the the Asus Copilot Plus PC that seemed to be pretty impressive.

I’m hoping to get like, yeah, one of us will get our hands on that soon. The Dell the XPS 13, I want to see like how this kind of transforms how that thing works. So good news so far, all signs point to this being a very good thing. I do feel bad for people who bought the first batch of AI PCs from Intel and from from AMD too.

I’ve talked to Microsoft people. They said some of these features may eventually trickle down to those systems, which has much slower MPUs, but we don’t know yet. Like stuff is in flux. You will, everybody gets Windows Studio effects, which is the cool background features. You may get some acceleration on older AI PCs in Adobe apps or whatever.

So there is some benefit, but. If you held off on buying a PC, now is the time to jump in because the Copile Plus stuff seems very good. Maybe not for a high end production machine yet, but for a really great ultra portable that you can take anywhere, certainly something like the Surface Pro or Surface Laptop, it’s a good (00:16:00) sign.

Let’s take some questions from the audience. Hello, folks. Podcast producer Ben is here, and I’m sure you’ve been looking at questions, and what are people thinking about these devices?

Ben: Yeah, so hey, everybody. There are a few questions. One of the big ones from Simon B. is, how do you guys feel about the reward system with the Edge browser?

Devindra: Oh, I saw that question. I don’t, I’m not into any of that stuff. I don’t know. I’ve seen people get like some trinkets or something like Xbox has had some rewards things for a while. The micro being and the Microsoft accounts have had some reward things. It just feels like they are just bribing you to use these services.

I don’t care about the rewards. Have you touched them at all, Sam?

Sam: Yeah, it’s and Google does this too. There’s like an Android rewards thing that I, would. And it’s it’s good if you have it’s more of a discipline thing where it’s do you have 30 seconds out of your day to go do these like very simple prompts?

And then you can get, some, imaginary points. And then maybe in a year or two, you have enough points is like buy an app or something.

Devindra: You get some free labor from kids basically in teenagers. Yeah.

Sam: If you have the drive to (00:17:00) do that every day, that’s cool. It’s just something that like, I don’t think about it unless I like, open up bing and I get the little prompt and I’ll go do it.

It takes 10 seconds. Usually but

Ben: it feels a bit like When I was in elementary school and saving the like little cut out things from the back of my chip bag It’s the internet version of that chester cheeto hat or something

Devindra: I remember I would try to I cut out a serial barcode to get like a batman frisbee after the first batman You I forgot my frisbee.

I’m still sad about it to this day.

Sam: Now, one thing I do think is interesting is that both of the new Microsoft machines have fans, as far as I know, which kind of puts it in a different category in terms of a pure MacBook Air rival, which in some ways, like I kind of respect that because If you were just like doing basic stuff, MacBook air is great, we’ve heard reports about, Hey, you go outside and the sun’s beating down on the laptop and the laptop has no way to cool itself and so it’ll shut down because it’s (00:18:00) overheating.

So I’m like, I don’t mind the fan. Yeah. Yeah. In theory, like the idea of a completely fanless machine is great because it’s silent and less moving parts to worry about, but I think it’s like a general work machine. I think having that on there. It is good. So I’m, that’s one thing I like to work outside.

Devindra: Yeah. Like I do use, I’ve used the MacBook airs all over, but certainly I think it was like last year when I went to WWDC and you’re just, you’re outside and the sun is on you and it just starts to get a little freaky having a little fan in there that can kick in is nice. I will tell you all I was installing like three games at once.

So like sucking down maybe. 500 gigabytes or no, three to 400 gigabytes of like data all at once. And yeah, the surface got toasty. Like the fan kicked in. It wasn’t super loud, but it was like, I am working here. I’m working to get all this stuff in quickly. And it did load pretty quickly. But

Ben: remind me again, was this in the sun or a bit

Devindra: outside and a bit inside, but basically once I got inside and was like next to my router, like it was just like sucking in data.

The SSD was doing a lot of work, the wireless chipset was doing a lot of work, and I could (00:19:00) hear the fan. It wasn’t, it was noticeable, but it wasn’t like noisy or loud or anything. It was just like a pleasant hum. Any other questions we want to tackle?

Ben: So DudeNameCharlie said rewards for your data in relation to reward system for Edge browser Dom Larry said here in Australia, the flex keyboard and pen is 7.

99 AUD. Don’t do it! Australia,

Sam: I’m

Ben: so sorry.

Sam: Australia gets screwed so badly on pricing. Australia

Ben: gets extremely screwed because everything needs to get there on a boat.

Devindra: That’s unfortunately, plus you have giant bugs and crazy wild animals, so I’m sorry Australia. And roving bands of marauders I’ve seen.

At least from what the Mad Max movie said.

Ben: Then we have like Chirag Arora who says, can we run Ableton? What do you think? Can we do a quick Google to see? I’m not a music guy. So that is not something I thought of. Released a like Ableton on arm situation. Because I imagine that.

They’ve already done this for the M1 chips. And (00:20:00) so would it be that you got to rebuild for windows?

Devindra: Like it’s a whole thing. Yeah, it is a whole thing.

Sam: While you’re looking that up, Mark was asking he was having issues on could install certain game pass games. There is no game pass.

Devindra: Computers because if you launch the Xbox app, it just shows you cloud streaming. That’s weird.

Sam: And for and so you’ve got to look at two things. It’s like the game streaming works just fine. And then if you download games from like the window store it looks like Microsoft, from what I can tell is doing a better job of labeling which games are and are not supported.

Unfortunately a lot of them are not, you will go in and you will see some games that are, so that’s one thing I want to dive into more and see what’s the percentage of like games that like, hey, work fine or just be, just don’t run at all.

Devindra: I was thinking they were just blocking entirely.

Cause when I launched the Xbox app, that’s normally where I go to look at game pass releases, there’s no game pass section at all on these systems. It’s just cloud streaming. But if you go through the store, yeah, you should technically the general

Sam: Microsoft store. It’s a, you get a little bit different (00:21:00)information.

Devindra: I did. So I installed steam and I got a couple of games going. I have not been able to play anything yet, but I did run 3d mark a couple of times and actually. I have the the stats on that too. And 3dMark, look, it’s fine. It’s better than the Intel XE stuff has been running 3dMark Wildlife Extreme.

I got a score of 6, 430, which was on par with the HP Spectre X360 16, a 16 inch computer, so it was faster than that one. Faster than a lot of the Intel Arc graphics we’ve seen this year. Certainly not as fast as Nvidia stuff. Impressive for a system of this size and this slim.

Ben: Yeah, Jonathan Anderson says, let me know when this silly game pass thing comes to Nintendo until then Zelda. We’ll get to that, actually. And Simon B has another question, which is there a cloud streaming that’s any good from Microsoft? Yeah,

Devindra: really? The Xbox cloud streaming, which I think some of the best cloud streaming, to be honest.

Sam: And so this almost makes you wonder is this part of Microsoft strategy? Because, Hey, (00:22:00) they’ve been pushing, cloud streaming for a long time. And, and the cloud streaming works just fine. And so maybe this is their solution to Hey, you want a game. If you pay us a little bit extra money, you can, you can play all your games in the cloud.

Devindra: I think, that’s part of, that’s been part of the pitch for a while, but I don’t think cause there have been reports that the cloud network has also been like slow to launch and stuff for people. So maybe they’re, they don’t want it to get too popular, but yeah, like the ability to just sit down and play a game on any laptop, as long as you can log into a web browser is fantastic and is a good thing with a system like this where you don’t want all that Hardaware.

Maybe inside your laptop. But you have good internet and you want to play some games. I could see that being a thing.

Ben: Yeah. Lord Buckethead asks, does Doom run? If you can stream it, then yes, of course Doom runs.

Devindra: Anything can run. If you stream it, anything is possible.

Ben: That’s how this

Devindra: works.

Ben: You’ll be able to play the new Doom.

What is the Middle Ages? Primeval Doom? The Dark Ages. What a

Devindra: good title. Quick thing on this surface. This is the first surface with an (00:23:00) OLED screen and the screen looks fantastic and the speakers are very good too. So I’ve been using this as I, I just want to do a little writing. I’m going to go to bed, like just lay down, bed, rest my back a little, but I can still like watch stuff.

The speakers are surprisingly good. So yeah, I think overall I’m feeling like good. The Hardaware

Sam: generally has been, top notch from what I can tell.

Devindra: I think that’s it that we have for questions today, but you know what folks, I always want to answer this stuff. So you can drop us an email at podcast on gadget.

com. I’m in the middle of my review. Sam’s still working on his, but we definitely want to answer your questions. Send us some and we can answer them in the next episode.

All right, let’s move on from all this Surface stuff. There was a Nintendo Direct this week. Which I think came as a surprise. We didn’t get much of a heads up that was happening. But a few things we want to call out. New Zelda. With starring Zelda, that’s good. The Legend of Zelda Echoes of (00:24:00) Wisdom.

How do you feel about this Sam? Because I’ve been waiting for this game for a long time.

Sam: I’m incredibly excited. So it has the, it’s similar art style that they used for the Link’s Awakening remake. Which I absolutely adored. I think it looks incredible. Yeah. And then obviously starring Zelda where you’re, she’s the main protagonist.

Link gets disappeared right in the beginning. Yeah. And that’s fine. It’s I think everybody has been really interested in to see like the series of the franchise is legends of Zelda and it’s been how many years until she gets to like really take center stage. Every non

Devindra: gamer, every parent has been like, Oh you’re Zelda, right?

That little guy running around, that’s Zelda, the legend of Zelda.

Sam: And then on top of that, like the idea, like she does, she doesn’t use a sword. She has this new echoes ability where she can basically capture like the essence of like inanimate objects chairs beds, whatever, but also enemies really.

brings a really interesting twist on the traditional like Zelda game style. I do wish they gave her just like a regular weapon. I don’t think it has to be a sword, but I want to just see (00:25:00)Zelda run around and bonk people on the head with a giant hammer or something.

Devindra: Maybe we’ll get something like that.

It does have a weird sense.

Sam: We’ve only seen a little bit from like the teasers and the preview. So hopefully she has her wand that makes echoes. And then, she gets a little bit of melee melee action in there too.

Devindra: I’m I think a bad interpretation of this is it’s almost like they’re saying, Oh, girls can’t use swords, right?

Of course a girl can use a sword. And that reminds me of comments from the shadow of Colossus creator who I love his games, but he did say something weird at some point. It was like, Oh yeah, girls can’t go on adventures like that. That’s why his games are typically about young boys trying to save people.

I don’t. Yeah, that’s bad faith. I’d say here. It’s what’s interesting is that it is a really interesting mechanic and we’ve also seen Zelda in some games be kick ass. She’s been a kick ass warrior in some games. And I’m not sure if the

Sam: Lord lines up, but like I’m, if we’re going to see if like we get an appearance from Sheik, which was like, remember, Zelda had, it transforms into Sheik and she was like a mysterious character.

She was a ninja basically.

Devindra: Yeah.

Sam: Yeah. And so I think, if they can incorporate that in some way, (00:26:00)that way Zelda gets some melee abilities on top of her magic stuff. I think that would be really cool, but I, we’ll have to wait to see how the game plays out.

Devindra: Yeah. I’m glad it’s not just melee cause then it would feel like a palette swap to just Oh, it’s another character hopping around doing Zelda puzzles. This seems like a fundamental rethinking of how this universe can work in the same way that Breath of the Wild was and Tears of the Kingdom was.

Gotta love it. Gotta love the people developing series producer. Yeah.

Sam: I was gonna say, and someone who like, Link to the Past is one of my favorite games of all time. So I love that they’re, still continuing on with the top down quote unquote 2D Zelda games.

Devindra: I love it too.

I would, I need the art though. I need the sprites. I need me some sprites. Like as much as I like this little like cutesy 3d art style, but it doesn’t hit in the same way. When I scroll tick tock, I often see people playing like older Zelda games. I’m like, it just feels good. And we don’t get a lot of that from Nintendo.

We do get it from other companies trying to be Zelda like. That’s a thing. So this game looks cool. The other thing that was really interesting is they finally fully showed us Metroid Prime. It’s called (00:27:00) Metroid Prime 4. It has been years since they first announced this thing. was 2017 when they first announced that they were working on it.

And in 2019 they also announced a complete do over, like they were stopping development of that version of Metro Prime four and starting it over. So now here we are, it’s 2024 and this game is coming next year. They say for the switch, but it’s okay, or whatever else Nten has next year, right? This is a lot of this is prep for software for next year or for their new system.

Sam: It’s interesting how they’re setting up for this is like the end of the switches like era and then whatever the switch to whatever, they call it, we’ll see. I’m curious to see how, what kind of support these games get in terms of will they be fully supported?

Will they be launched titles for a new Nintendo system? They’re gonna

Devindra: carry the store over like the switch has been so successful. They can’t do another Oh, this is a weird one off store and all the stuff you bought may die in a couple years or something Like the switch is forever.

Sam: Yeah, and I actually think this is like this is something (00:28:00)that like nintendo has a really big opportunity with if you look at like With the switch, they switched they, moved over to an arm based chip.

And so I’m really curious to see like what the continuity will be for this next system. Will it also be arm? I really hope so. Because it’s it has like really big implications on hey, is it easier to pour older games over to the new title? Does this, there’s been rumors that the new device will support game cartridges from the switch and stuff like that.

And then on top of that bringing back a lot of the virtual, quote unquote, virtual console titles where, Hey, we’re having classics on the store and they run on the switch and they run on the new machine too, so you get to carry over your library as well too. And I think that’s a really big.

Thing that, they could capitalize on with whatever the replaces the switch.

Devindra: There’s no reason to do an architecture change. Like I’m just like looking at this on a strategic level, like they’ve done so much work to build emulators for the switch itself. Like that stuff will directly carry over to another arm system.

There was also like, I don’t, what else would they go with? There’s really nothing like PC (00:29:00)Hardaware with an, yeah, if they go back to power

Sam: PC, people will just go quake in their seats, but yeah,

Devindra: it’s not. So yeah I fully expect them to stick with like arm and looking at what arm is doing now, like maybe relying on some good stuff.

And also, yeah, probably working together with Nvidia again, because nobody else really used the Tegra chipset. I think the Zune HD had the Tegra, which I really liked. But. That it’s just like dead Hardaware. I do think a lot of these games will just work across both systems.

Like you wouldn’t want people buying new games this year and by next year, like they just won’t work. Did anything else jump out at you from these announcements? Yeah.

Sam: I thought gonna get a new Mario and Luigi game. It’s called brother ship, which I think is actually. Sounds a lot, sounds really fun, but also could be like some sort of hidden pun, because it was like in the teaser it showed that I’m like, traveling around the world, maybe on a boat, so hey, this is gonna be cool, like Mario and Luigi capped in a boat together, that could be fun.

The

Devindra: art style is like almost a little cel shaded too.

Sam: Yep. Looks a little different, yeah. I’m always a sucker for a new (00:30:00)Mario Party game. Cause you get one like every five years at most. And so there’s going to be a new Mario Party game called Mario Party Jamboree. And it’s sad because like I bought the last one and I played it like a bunch when it first came out and then like I had a kid and I had no one to play it with cause I didn’t ever do anything that wasn’t kid related.

Devindra: And also you don’t have people over to play Mario Party games. Yes. And so we had a pandemic, that’s the whole thing. So I’m excited

Sam: for Mario Party Jamboree, even though I may have aged out of it.

Devindra: Maybe you’re aging back into it though Like I am my daughter is now five and she’s starting she’s like big on Minecraft and some games So yeah, this is a good entry point.

She also watches me play RPGs. So and then likes the games Yeah,

Sam: you were talking about sprites Give me right gonna be a dragon warrior 3 HD 2d remake and so I mean I love the way that thing looks because it does capture more of that like spite inspired graphical quality.

And as someone who’s like always appreciated dragon warrior, but it has never dived into it the way that like, I played every final fantasy game. This seems like a (00:31:00) really good place to jump on because it’s like chronologically it’s the first of the, dragon warrior trilogy games.

So it’ll be really interesting. It’s modern graphic style, but, with a more of a classic turn based RPG feeling, which is always, right up my alley.

Devindra: This looks really cool. I do at least HD 2D gets us some sprites alongside 3D engine stuff. But then I’m like playing Hades 2, and it’s just oh, look at this glorious artwork.

Look at this. There’s still some 3D work in there, but it’s just mostly, beautiful illustrations. I don’t know anything else from the Sam.

Sam: No, that was about it You know, there’s a ton of stuff there. There’s a new Metal Slug game That was like a some sort of like a tactics tower defense game

Devindra: They is it tower defense or is it metal slug tactics because they announced that no So

Sam: they showed the tower defense game On the stream, but Metal Gear, there’s a perfect segue because the Metal Slug game that I’m really interested is Tactics, which is supposed to come out sometime later this year too.

So we’ll see which one, if I play both or whatever, but yeah.

Devindra: Awesome. Yeah, good direct from Nintendo. Also like coming (00:32:00)after we were just like dying from so much stuff from summer game fest. So good time to play some games, folks. Let us know what you’re playing or what you’re excited for.

Podcast and gadget. com. We had a couple news bits. I just want to mention briefly we had talked about Ilya Sutskever, the former chief scientist of open AI who left that company a couple of weeks ago. He has launched a new AI company called safe super intelligence, Inc, or SSI. That’s all we know. He says he’s working on, he’s not working on like stuff, like open AI is he’s going straight to super intelligence and he wants to build it safely.

It sounds like a lot of talk and not much details about this thing yet. Do you have any thoughts on the Sam? Because I have bad, I don’t have great feelings when people talk about super intelligence.

Sam: Yeah. There’s this whole section that like of the internet, that’s like very wants to talk about artificial general intelligence as like a thing that will be here very soon.

And so the idea of Hey, someone’s going to focus on the safety. And if you actually go, there’s not a ton of details on it, but if you go to the safe superintelligence website, it’s actually pretty funny because all I (00:33:00) do is our mission is to make safe superintelligence the name of the company is safe superintelligence SSI.

That’s all we care about. That’s all we want to work on. And so it’s they are very focused on the, especially the safety part of AI. And so I appreciate that kind of directive, but like you said, there’s, it’s so early that it, there’s really not much to talk about in terms of like actual deliverables just yet.

Devindra: I think even like John Carmack, like when he left meta and very loudly was like, I cannot work with like your weird corporate rules and stuff. He said he was going to go work on AGI. Like it is a thing smart people are focused on. I just feel like it feels like the time where the tech industry gets a little too religious about a thing that may never ultimately happen.

I’ve been reading about the singularity from Ray Kurzweil since the 90s and Michio Kaku was talking about it too. It’s a thing they’ve imagined, like where our machines get super intelligent and then we won’t be able to control them. I, I don’t know if we’ll actually get there and, I don’t know if these companies actually building safety measures are going to be helpful at all.

(00:34:00) That’s what OpenAI was supposed to be. That’s why Elon Musk and Sam Altman and a lot of folks like put that company together as a non profit and they end up being just a thing, raising tons of money to make a lot of money selling AI. I feel like it’s a lie they’re telling themselves.

But yeah, I don’t know. It’s weird. We didn’t, we were even talking about this. We didn’t even cover the story in gadget because there’s no detail here. It’s, he’s doing a thing called safe superintelligence and we don’t know what that thing actually is. So to me, that is like a nothing burger, at least for something we’d write about.

Something I do want to talk about and shows like the immediate dangers of AI is perplexity. And wire just put up a piece called perplexity is a bullshit machine. If you’ve not heard of perplexity is like an AI search engine type of thing where you’d put in queries and it will just answer them.

The CEO calls it an answer engine, but what it really seems like What’s happening is it’s using different AI engines to basically answer your (00:35:00) questions, but also it’s scraping. It is both scraping the internet and scraping websites and texts and then sending that to the AI engines and then sending a response to you and Forbes had reported that they were basically just like straight up copying.

Their reports. If you asked a question about an article, like it will just repeat the Forbes article at you with very little attribution or unclear attribution. So people have been mad at this company for a while. I think somebody, I don’t know if it was Forbes, but they had said like perplexity is working on a licensing deal.

After they started stealing their stuff. And, they

Sam: have made some small changes to call out attribution a little bit better or make it more prominent or better yet cite their sources and link back to, where they’re getting this info from. This all seems like a very much like a company that is, they did a thing without thinking about the consequences of the thing that they made.

And now they’re trying to fix all the problems with the thing that they made. And it’s I don’t know, maybe you should have thought about that a little bit harder before you opened it up (00:36:00)to just users out there.

Devindra: It’s like the thing tech companies do. Like people, you may not have noticed like what happened, like how Uber.

And how Lyft and a lot of these companies like rose to power. But a lot of it was just by a thing. Hey, we’re going to deploy this thing, which is using tech. Oh, you have local laws about how people handle taxis or things like that, or share transportation. We’re going to ignore those entirely. And just do our thing.

It’s the mentality

Sam: of we’re going to disrupt stuff by breaking things and fixing it later.

Devindra: Yeah. Or if you’ve been to a city recently and scores and scores of electric scooters, just littering the streets, it’s because these companies have deployed the stuff and didn’t think about where do you put it?

How do you keep it out of the way? Like, how do you actually maintain a decent public space, even though you’re putting junk out there and these companies just didn’t care. So it left it up to cities to do a lot of that stuff. So what Wired found. And this report is really interesting is that perplexity is straight up.

They have like secret Wired has already blocked perplexities like search crawlers, and then apparently this company has other secret (00:37:00) search crawlers that are out there that are ignoring the robots. txt file, which in a website tells the search engine, Hey, crawl me, or don’t crawl me, or you don’t have access to certain things.

This is just bypassing what. What publishers are actually saying these companies should have access to. So this company sucks. And this is to me the best example of just like AI hubris of just I can build this thing, look at all these tools, the web is right there. It’s open. I can just grab this text and deliver something to you and raise a lot of money while doing it too.

I don’t know how much of this seems like a legitimate business personally. Any thoughts, Sam, any thoughts beyond that?

Sam: No, you hit on the head. It’s like they’re priming themselves up to be the example of what not to do in terms of using AI responsibly. And so I guess we’ll see how that fallout ends up.

Devindra: All right, let’s move on to one listener question we got from Mark Dell, who’s now watching our live stream. So thank you for being a loyal listener and watcher, Mark. But he said that recently he got Google Fiber at his apartment. He formerly had (00:38:00) 30 megabits up and down. He went all in on Google Fiber and got the 8 gigabit plan.

And just sucked it down, basically like having that full access, but he realized he’s lucky to get 1. 4 gigs speeds over wifi, 2. 5 gigs over ethernet. That’s the limit of most network cards. And now Google’s also considering 20 gig fiber. He’s wondering, is there any practical use for such fast internet for residents?

And you know what? No, not right now, but what’s also great having more internet than, what to do with and being ready for whatever’s happening 10 years from now. If you’re streaming games, if you’re doing stuff I have a gigabit up and down plan with AT& T fiber. It’s incredible.

Like I was talking about getting a ton of steam games, like downloading three steam games at once. That stuff comes in a couple of minutes, like just. Sucks data down. Maybe Mark, you don’t want to pay for the full eight gig plan. If you’re not going to use it, do they have a four gig plan? Do they have a two gig plan or something?

Yeah, you need all the Hardaware to support it. And wifi seven is coming. It’s going (00:39:00) to support faster Hardaware or faster speeds. Ethernet is always becoming a faster thing, but I think at best I see 2. 5 gigabit cards in most systems. I guess you could get 10. And yeah, there’s some, you can

Sam: get 10 if you look for it.

And obviously it’s a lot easier to like, if you have a desktop and you can get your own network card and all that, that the one thing that is like like an overlooked benefit is that, let’s say you have eight, eight gig plan and you can only get 2. 5 gigs to a specific laptop or PC or whatever.

The one thing about having a huge. Bandwidth pipeline like that is that if you have a lot of people in your house, you can send multiple people can be sucking down 2. 5 gigs without impacting what other people are doing. And this is like one of the classic issues of if you have bad internet and someone who’s watching Netflix and then someone else decides to watch, max or, they’re downloading a game from steam.

Then you can start impacting what other people are doing. And they’re, their stream is going to start buffering or shuddering or something like that. And so that’s the nice thing about that. And that’s part of the reason why I probably pay for more, (00:40:00)bandwidth than I need so that I just don’t have to think about it.

I always know that I have way too many devices in my place and, I want to make sure that there’s running smoothly connected to the internet, super fast all the time. And so it’s nice to have that kind of Re bonus overhead is, one of the small fringe benefits.

Devindra: Especially for us, we occasionally have to upload tons of 4k video, so if I have to upload 50 to a hundred gigabytes of stuff, like I want that up quickly that was a real pain when I was traveling to WWDC and the Microsoft campus to get the stuff from the DJI Osmo pro up into the cloud.

It just took forever and I really killed my workflow a little bit. So you still need the internet sometimes. And if you can get that good internet internet, go for it. I see Mark Dell in the chat. He says he’s already downgraded his Google fiber. He could do that in the app, so that’s super useful.

And he got a 10 gig switch, so he has a decent backbone now too. This is great. This is great. And that’s one of those things

Sam: you got to think about too. It’s I have a new bandwidth and that’s great. And if let’s say you get your router from whatever ISP you’re using or, you’re getting your modem from whatever (00:41:00) ISP, then you have to like, make sure your router can handle all that.

And that’s, where DaVinci was talking about Hey, Wi Fi seven is coming and more devices. And there are a handful of like smartphones on the market today that do support Wi Fi seven. But obviously you’re not going to get Wi Fi 7 speeds if your router doesn’t support it. And you got to think holistically about like how you upgrade the, the devices that you’re using.

Devindra: What’s funny is that I have the Surface Pro here. I think it has Wi Fi 6E and I noticed okay, I’m just gonna plug into ethernet to suck down these Steam games faster. I have gigabit. I think it’s, no it’s a gigabit, like ethernet connection over here. And I was still getting faster speeds over my wife.

The wifi was coming in faster, even though it’s going through a repeater that’s in my basement here. That’s going, hitting the router, the wifi still came in faster. So we are at a weird place where yeah, you, if you want raw speed, sometimes wifi will be better. If you want like stable connections, like that’s where you plug into ethernet.

So that’s why I have on my desktop.

Sam: Yeah. If we, if you want to get into the really nitty gritty stuff, there’s some interesting things that like net gear (00:42:00) and some of the other router makers are doing with wifi seven where they’re doing like multiple channel aggregation. And so you can really pump up those speeds over wifi.

And it’s For someone who remembers when wifi was just like very unreliable and spotty. It’s Oh, this is so nice to not have to think about it. And a lot of these new wifi seven routers are really expensive, but Hey, when the prices come down, I think you just appreciate it from not having to like constantly babysit your wifi like that.

It’s just, really nice to have.

Devindra: I remember when Wi Fi like barely supported a room Oh man, like I was the first person to put a Wi Fi router, like in my dorm room and I had to hide it from IT and all this stuff. Good stuff. Wi Fi is good. Anyway, if you have access to fiber folks, make that switch.

It may be a little more than what you’re paying for cable in most cases, from what I’ve seen, it actually isn’t, but the stability of the connection and the ability to not like actually share that connection with everybody in your neighborhood is super great. Like I. Yeah, fiber is just such a solid connection to the internet.

All right, let’s move on to what we’re working on. Hey, I’m (00:43:00) working on a review. Let’s review the Surface Pro and I’m going to try to get some other Copilot Plus systems in soon. Sam, anything from you?

Sam: Yeah, obviously, working on the Surface laptop. But I have a review for the MSI Claw, which is MSI’s attempt at making a gaming handheld, which, they went with an Intel chip instead of something from AMD.

And That makes a pretty big difference. Turns out who knew? Why would you do that? Why would you do that? Also at some point I’m trying to, squeeze in a review for the Keychron Q1 HE, which is sort of Keychron’s attempt at making a Wooting clone. Cause it has the HE stands for Hall Effect switches.

You do get, full analog control and you get some of that like rapid trigger stuff that you see some on some gaming keyboards. I’ve been really enjoying it so far. I just got to find time to write it up.

Devindra: I just picked up one of those new fee keyboards. I think we’ve recommended the new fi or new fee.

Yeah, that was

Sam: the keyboard that I bought before this one. And it’s really great. And they make some really good low profile keyboards. Which is actually my preference. Just ’cause, (00:44:00) years of typing on laptops. I prefer the, the more chit lower profile style keys. I’m

Devindra: using the low profile new V 96, I think.

And it just that, that’s the one I got. Feels good? Yeah. Feels so good. Loving it. And yeah. Got any pop culture picks for us this week, Sam?

Sam: Yeah. I’m still watching star Wars, the acolyte. That’s so good. I think we were talking about this in Slack the other day. It’s I’m enjoying it a lot.

I just wish they hadn’t done the evil twin trope. Just because it’s I think that, that trope is played out. But yeah, aside from that, I’ve been enjoying it. And then I think the doctor who season finale is this weekend. And I, as someone who is definitely, I do not classify myself as a whovian.

That’s, more of my wife’s thing, the transition for this season, because now Disney’s kind of running it. Yeah. The production quality is way up and things just look good, which is like old seasons of Dr. Who looks janky. The effects. Yeah it’s rough. But the thing is that the show is like it’s been very hit or miss.

I think like the first episode was good. And then the middle episodes were just like, They lost the whole idea. And then for the season finale, you finally (00:45:00) things, it seems like they’re getting back to like core Dr. Who, which I enjoy more. But as someone who is not as invested into the franchise as some other people are I’m definitely not the target audience.

Devindra: That’s why I’m like, I’ve never like fully gone into it. There’s some stuff, the Matt Smith season, the first one, like that was good. But the writing and doctor who always seems like really hit or miss even when like they have a really talented person in charge. So and there was

Sam: there’s two episodes.

I think the guy who plays the doctor had some commitment on another Film or something and so there’s two episodes where the doctor is just not in doctor who and that’s just a weird situation there are a lot of side characters.

Devindra: I guess I could see that happening. Yeah, shout out to Dr.

Who. I keep, that’s one thing I keep like thinking I need to watch that because I do like the new doctor. I’ve seen him and it was sex education. Oh yeah, he’s great. Yeah. Great show. That’s on Netflix. And then it like evaporates from my mind because any, literally anything else in my life happens, I’m like, I forget about Dr.

Who. So glad you’re digging it, Sam, even if it’s messy. One thing I want to shout out is a show I think you will like, and a lot of people should be watching, Not Enough People are (00:46:00)watching Evil, which was a show on CBS by the Kings, people who did The Good Wife and The Good Fight. It is straight up X Files.

It’s awesome. I watched the

Sam: first season of that. Yeah. And then there was like a long hiatus. It was either after season one or season two. And I keep meaning to go back to it. But yes that show is awesome.

Devindra: I’m shouting it down shouting it out now because season four is on Paramount plus, which I’ve been going through excellent stuff.

Like it’s pretty much like when the X Files had hit its run and knew the characters and knew the tone and could be a little playful with things. The show is about a trio of people who are out to investigate miracles. Basically, but they’re it’s led by a priest played by name is escaping you right now, but he was Luke Cage,

Mike Coulter.

Yes. And there’s also a tech guy who’s a total like skeptic played by Asif Manvi. And a therapist who is just like looking at the human psychological side of things. It is X Files, but it’s also these folks are a priest. Push basically working for the Catholic church to do this too, but it’s not like a preachy religious show.

It’s (00:47:00) using religious iconography to explore weird supernatural stuff. I think it has a lot of fun with that. The first three seasons are on Netflix now, so it used to be hard for people to see it. So if you wanted to see the show, if you’ve heard me talk about it before, check it out. Go to Netflix, just watch Evil.

If you liked The X Files, if you liked Buffy, if you liked a lot of those old shows where there was basically a mystery of the week there was a team of folks who would have to deal with those. It’s funny. It’s cool. It’s super smart. I love the show. It’s like one of the things I just sit down and love watching.

Sam: I’ll also say Michael Emerson. He plays like Ben from Lost.

Devindra: Ben from Lost.

Sam: He is such a good bad guy. And I don’t want to ruin the like reveal of like who his character really is. Yeah. But he is, he’s he’s so well cast and well equipped to play the role that he’s doing in that is so I really think the performances in that show really make it just even if it is you’re looking at a standard monster of the week episode.

Like you were, they’re such, they do such a good job of like really getting you invested into it.

Devindra: They have a lot of fun. And yeah, poor Michael Emerson. I (00:48:00)remember during loss, he talked about being on the subway and nobody wanted to sit near him or stand next to him because they all saw him as this like evil man from TV.

So he’s just a little typecast there, but now he’s doing it again.

Sam: So I guess it worked out for him. It worked out for

Devindra: him. Like what Giancarlo Esposito ended up doing. He’s just he’s a villain everywhere, apparently, like doing the same thing everywhere. He hasn’t worn it out like Giancarlo Esposito has.

So anyway, go watch Evil. It’s on Netflix. The new season is on Paramount Plus. That’s it for this week, folks. Our theme Is by Game Composer Dale North. Our outro music is by our former managing editor, Terence O’Brien. The podcast is produced by Ben Element. You can find me online at dra on Twitter, blue Sky Mastodon.

Also talk about movies and TV at the film cast@thefilmcast.com. Where can we find you, Sam? You can find me on Twitter slash x at Sam Rutherford. Email us@podcastinggat.com. Leave us review on iTunes and subscribe on anything that gets podcasts. That’s it folks. We’re (00:49:00)at.

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