Ask A Techie 20 Questions - Marcus Sanatan - ICT Project Officer

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This is a new and weekly thing I am starting on the blog. The questions are designed to be entertaining and educational at the same time. A great opportunity to share the thoughts of persons in the tech space.

How would you define a techie?

I'm pretty open about the definition, anyone who's interested in some form of technology development. This could be programming, engineering, following gadgets, policy and so much more. Technology is so pervasive, I think a techie should be a broad term as well.

You have to pull an all nighter, beverage and snack of choice?

First of all: never do an all nighter. It's not worth it! But if you are doing one like I used to do, bring 2 litres of water so you don't get dehydrated and some chocolate wouldn't hurt. Don't eat chocolate? Then give it to me :)

Trapped in an elevator for 20 mins, what would you do to pass time?

Hopefully I'm not alone and start up a convo. If I am, I'll tell the whole world I'm stuck on my phone.

What tech company would you like to work for?

That's a tough one... Real tough! Of course the big boys like Google, Amazon, Microsoft, Apple, Oracle, IBM etc are all on the list of awesome jobs. Major banking companies like Citi and JP Morgan got some awesome stuff to work on. But I see some awesome companies here in Trinidad and Tobago, in particular Caribbean Ideas and Ixanos. Yet when it's all said and done, my heart's with Skyscanner <3

Describe a social problem that technology can solve?

Can't think of one it can't. This has to do with technology being everywhere in our lives. If used correctly, it can make positive impacts on our lives! Take for instance the app that lets women map out places of sexual harassment and assault. That may really help them get a safer route home or wherever they travel. A true technology solution though, is to change the rape culture in men.

Have to troubleshoot a problem, what album do you put on repeat?

Anything that chills me out, these days Pure Heroine (Lorde) and Ghost Stories (Coldplay).

Tell us anything strange about yourself.

I don't trust birds that can't fly... you'd be well off not trusting them either!

Who is your number one role model in the tech world?

Google boys, Sergey & Larry

Favourite tech quotation?

"Premature optimization is the root of all evil." - Donald Knuth

Best movie you've seen and why?

Impossible for me to say, so many good ones! In recent history, Lego. It's one of the best movies critiquing society on so many levels, I was mind blown yet entertained at the same time.

Advice you would give to other techies?

Never settle for mediocrity.

Hibernate or shut-down laptop?

Shut down kind of guy.

Mouse clicks or keyboard shortcuts?

A bit of both :)

Most prized gadget you own?

MacBook Pro

What is unique about the number 8549176320?

Before shamelessly Googling the answer, it had all digits from 0 to 9. After Googling, it has all those digits in alphabetical order.

What question would you ask Steve Jobs?

Why you gotta be so rude? Just kidding, what is your vision for computers in the next 10 years?

Messy room or clean room?


What do you wish there was an app for?

Detecting b.s. >cough< lies

What city in the world would you locate your tech startup?

There's something about Warsaw in Poland... If that doesn't work out I guess it's Edinburgh, Scotland.

What question would you ask the next techie?

Do you eat pizza in every hackathon?

Inbox by Google launches as Invite Only Beta

I was casually perusing my feedly feeds when I bounce up this article about Inbox. It immediately caught my attention. Inbox is a mobile and web app that sits on Gmail and is aimed at making it easier for you to manage your email. You can pin emails. You can snooze emails to be reminded later. All items is now called DONE. It sports a cheerful material design. Labels functionality is replaced by bundles. You can add reminders to an email thread. I am not seeing the ability to delete one message from a thread, this is sometimes useful. I love it and the tried and tested invite system is going to provide a lot of buzz and excitement in the tech space. I will tweet as soon as I get any invites. You can request your invite and learn more about Inbox from - Thanks again to Yilei and Arthur for the invites.

Samsung Note 4 World Tour (Trinidad) featuring Gear S, Tab S and Galaxy Alpha

Today Samsung held their Note 4 launch to introduce us to the Note 4 and other devices that will go on sale come November 1st at their Experience store in Gulf City mall. The launch took place at the ritzy Hyatt (Port of Spain waterfront) boardroom. Samsung remains the only OEM in the mobile and device space that does launches in Trinidad and Tobago. As a small island tech blogger I appreciate this very much.

When I make device recommendations to folks I ask them questions like what is the purpose of the purchase and what is their budget. I base my recommendations firstly on devices and brands that I have had much experience with and then what I have read. I currently own the S4, Gear Fit and Level On headphones. Samsung gets my recommendation. I will follow up this blog post with another, an in-dept thoughts and first impressions on the various devices.

For now enjoy the usual photo story from the launch event. Share and comment and help the blog post reach as many persons as possible.

Samsung's Key Account Manager, Kenneth Moore, goes through the features of the Note 4

Note 4 and Gear S

Galaxy Alpha

Guests got to hold, feel and experience the different devices

Press Kit

Mark Lyndersay gets hands on

Token of appreciation

Loved how this lighting fixture looked


Moms decided she was wearing Divali today

Selfie outside the Hyatt

Perfect Caribbean weather

This beautiful flower was asking to be photographed

Watching Apple Event Livestreams On Windows

One of the problems with Apple livestreams is that they are usually restricted to the Apple ecosystem. You will see the following message below the stream - Live streaming video requires Safari 5.1.10 or later on OS X v10.6.8 or later; Safari on iOS 6.0 or later. Live streaming via Apple TV requires second- or third-generation Apple TV with software 6.2 or later.

When you Google you will see that it is possible to watch these streams using VLC. You can wait around for someone to post the URL that you open with VLC or you could determine it for yourself. Here are the steps I followed to get the stream running in VLC on Windows 10.

I then get a player with controls but it does not play. I downloaded Quicktime and I installed it. I tried it in IE but still no go. No problem since I was planning to use VLC anyways.

  • Right click on the player and select Copy Video URL
  • Open that URL (with a .mov extension) in another tab
  • And you will be asked to save it
  • Open that file with VLC and voila