Good morning everybody! 

I was on WGAN this morning with Matt Gagnon. We began talking about Facial Recognition and some of the drawbacks and the rush to use it when it has not been thoroughly tested and vetted.   Then we talked about the reasons for the shortage of Gaming Consoles and other computing equipment.  Finally, we got to how we are losing the war against hackers and why.  Here we go with Matt.

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Automated Machine Generated Transcript:

Craig Peterson: [00:00:00] Good morning, Mr. Matt Gagnon and I got into a few things, including why you just can’t find some of these game computers out there anymore. Facial recognition, some more warnings about the future here, frankly. Also, what the United States is doing to help protect itself, and the short answer is not much. So here we go with Mr. Matt Gagnon.

Matt Gagnon: [00:00:26] It’s Wednesday morning. Thanks so much for listening. We’ve got Craig Peterson with us right now, as he always is at this time on Wednesdays. He’s given us all the technology news we could possibly dream of. Thanks a lot for coming on.  Craig, and how are you this morning, sir.

Craig Peterson: [00:00:39] Hey, Oui c’est un bon matin

Matt Gagnon: [00:00:42] Oh God, don’t speak French to me. We’re going to lose people if we do that.

Craig Peterson: [00:00:46] Going well, my schooling was all in French schools entirely. I didn’t, which as a second language, not too bad today.

Matt Gagnon: [00:00:53] Yeah. I was reasonably fluent back in high school and 20 years later, not so much anymore, unfortunately.

Craig Peterson: [00:01:03] Yeah.

Matt Gagnon: [00:01:03] Craig getting into the actual topics of the day, though. One of the interesting things that we have seen in the last 10 years or so in the world is the development of this facial recognition software.

I remember back in the day when Facebook actually came out with their first algorithm that started doing this. I don’t know if you remember this where they would even start to like auto-tag your pictures. This must have been like six or seven years ago. It started to do that. That was my first. I think that was my first indication that, Oh, the future’s coming.

They’re just going to start doing facial recognition. And they know who I am at pretty much at all times. Anyway, a lot of people got creeped out by that. And now, many, I think, are wondering whether or not there’s your facial recognition. Your photos are being used out there for this type of software here. So if people are a little bit interested in, shall we say whether or not. They’ve been exposed to the world like this. What do they do?

Craig Peterson: [00:01:53] Yeah, this is a difficult thing, frankly, but the easiest thing to do to find out if some of your pictures have been taken online, if you have a picture you’re specifically wondering about, you can just go to Google images and upload your picture or give it a link to your picture, and it’ll tell you where it can find it online.

There’ve been people who’ve been driving down the highway and saw their picture on a billboard. It’s gotten that bad.  Of course, now we know Clearview AI and other companies have been harvesting pictures, quite literally stealing them on websites. Then using that information out to sell your location and who you are just based on your face. It’s like minority report, right? Pass that billboard and say hello, Mr. That’s where we’re going. So that’s one way you can do it. There’s also a really cool site called You can go online.

Flicker, which is a site that we use to upload pictures to. A lot of people did. It’s a great place to share your photos, right? And they have, of course, now being sold two or three times, maybe more over the years and millions of their photos are now online, are now being used by who knows who to promote, who knows what, or to track you down.

China and Russia are apparently are using these photos as well. So if you go to, you can just type in your flicker user name, and it’ll do a search and tell you where your photos are found. Now, of course, flicker was very popular at one point because it would help organize the photos, as you talked about here? Probably about six, eight years ago. They started doing recognition of photos.

Think about what we’re doing today. We’re giving our photos to Amazon photos. But we’re putting them in Apple I photo. We’re putting them still up on all of these websites. What’s going to happen in a few years when those companies decide to do more with them?

Now we know Apple has a commitment to keeping them private, but we also know Google has a commitment to making money off of anything they can get from us. So these AIs’ artificial intelligence are learning more and more. The tags we already put onto photos are being used by Google to make their programs better as they try and track as more and more.

Matt Gagnon: [00:04:29] Talking to Craig Peterson, you hear him on this very station on Saturdays at one o’clock going over all these topics and so much more. He joins us now, of course, to go over technology topics.

Craig, my son, asked me for a PlayStation five for Christmas, and I laughed at him and told him that was not going to happen. Although I did make one attempt. I will admit. I made one attempt to maybe try to see if I could snag one. I think a Walmart or something had opened up an online thing, like at 8:00 PM.  I got on at 7:59 PM and tried, but the site crashed. I had no chance of getting one then. That was when I basically said, we’ll just get one later, if at all.

But a lot of people are blaming scalpers. Like people who ended up picking them up, they found some way of winning the lottery, and they got one, and now we’re selling them for Three grand or something. A lot of people are blaming them for the supply problem because you still can’t get one right now.  That’s not really the real reason why you can’t get one. What is?

Craig Peterson: [00:05:22] The real reason is who needs anything more than Donkey Kong on your original Nintendo 64.

Matt Gagnon: [00:05:29] Absolutely.

Craig Peterson: [00:05:30] Yeah. Exactly.

Matt Gagnon: [00:05:31] See some of the things that I bought on both my PlayStation and the old WiiU and everything else. I got a ton of nostalgic games from back in the day.

Craig Peterson: [00:05:39] It is really quite an industry, and you can play so many of them now on your phones and other devices. But the real reason actually is industry-wide in the computer industry. Right now, we’re having trouble getting our hands on some of these chips that are major components for computers and gaming systems.

That’s what happened here around Christmas time. If you wanted to buy one of these things, it was almost impossible, and it isn’t just the PlayStation. Of course, it’s the X-Box and, as I said, computers like laptops, et cetera.

I’m looking at a graph right now from eBay and prices that these Xboxes were selling for and the PlayStations. There’s just a huge jump. Of course, the main reason for the shortage of the chips has to do with the lockdown.

Many companies decided we’re probably not going to sell as much inventory as we expected, so they cut back their orders. Remember, these orders are made months in advance. Of course, the opposite was true. People were locked down, and they played more video games. They needed more computers to work from home.  Those two waves hit together, and we got this huge tsunami of prices on them. All kinds of computer equipment.  That’s what’s happened. It’s not permanent. They are ramping up. The orders are back up.  I suspect they’ll have a bit of a glut here in a couple of months.

Matt Gagnon: [00:07:08] And Craig, before I let you go, I have one final question to ask you.  It’s perhaps the question of the hour. The question of the day, the question of the century. Has the United States lost the battle against hackers?

Craig Peterson: [00:07:18] Oh my gosh. Yeah. I’m going to talk about that this weekend on Saturday at one. I’m going to talk about it next weekend too. This is a very deep subject because we see now major warfare going on. There is an article in the New York Times that I’ll be putting in my newsletter this week. That talks about what happens.

We’ve got ISIS out there. They’ve laid siege and back to Mosel, Tikrit, and many other places. We had a Michelle Obama. Her team over there going into the middle East. We have just all kinds of people from our secretary of state, through the president that’s gone over there. We’ve been very concerned about them physically. That makes a ton of sense.

The other side of this has to do with computer security. We are not taking it seriously enough. Look what happened this week.  We had a water treatment plant in Florida that was hacked remotely, and the hackers increased dramatically the amount of lye that was being added to the water. Now that is something that should never be able to happen, but it’s because we just don’t seem to care.

Even this massive SolarWinds attack that happened, Matt. We spent, the United States taxpayer, millions of dollars to have the software developed to help protect these systems that would have been protected if we had been using the software.

Our government agencies have been hacked. Our businesses have been hacked. We’re getting hacked. Our power plants, our water plants are getting hacked. 

You know what. We’re hardly doing anything about it.

Matt Gagnon: [00:09:09] That’s been Craig Peterson, our tech guru, as he mentioned, Saturday one, o’clock tune in for more information on what you just heard and so much more.

Craig, appreciate it as always. We will talk to you again next week, sir.

Craig Peterson: [00:09:20] Take care, Mr. Matt.

Cut them off there. By the way, I am editing right now, the final edits on the last five or six. I think it is videos as part of our Improving Windows Security course. Yay.

Finally, gonna have that done. It is phenomenal. I think anyway, and we’ve been doing a lot to try and help you guys out.

So keep your eye on your email box, and we will talk again.

We’ll be back, of course, for our weekend podcasts. Oh, and by the way, I have six or eight stations now on the weekend that I am carrying my radio show, which is really cool. We are getting the word out it’s because of you guys, you recommending people pay attention to all of these points I’m bringing up and having them sign up for email list and listening on podcasts and, of course, also on these radio stations.

So thank you. Very much everybody. We are going to stop those bad guys, and we’re going to do it together.

Take care. Bye-bye.


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