Best of Public Access Vol.9: So What'cha, What'cha Want?

Google is Alphabet now, in one of the more confusing rebrandings since Netflix thought that Qwikster would be a good idea. This week, in addition to trying to think of clever headlines about the Alphabet announcement, we heard back from the Def Con hacker conference, and electropop band Yacht ensured no one would ever see their album artwork when they released it via fax machine only... because there is nothing artists hate more than you actually looking at their work.

In other news, we've been running the grand experiment that is the Public Access channel for about two months now, producing over 180 stories on everything ranging from cutting out cable to refusing meeting requests. While we work on the back end to spruce up the PA home page, we're wondering what you all think so far: How have you liked contributing to Public Access? What don't you like about it? What's working for you? Do you have suggestions on assignment topics you'd like to see other contributors write about? Do you have thoughts on what kinds of features or functionality you'd like to see on this page or in our CMS system? Talk to us in the comments or reach me on Twitter (I'm @Dameright) and let us know. The whole point of Public Access is to create a place where people want to hang out and write, and we can't do that without your feedback!

The home page is coming soon! I swear! I saw the mock-ups yesterday and everything. In the meantime you can check out the latest from Public Access right here. If you're not a member yet, you can apply here.

Recommended reading

"Some satellite TV providers offer gift cards or statement credits when you refer friends to their service. Take advantage of your social media networks, or use old-fashioned word-of-mouth, to refer friends to your favorite satellite TV provider and get paid for watching TV — or at least for talking about it."

Read the rest of Satellite TV Subscriber? How to Get the Best Service for Less Money by Cosette Jarrett.

"Researchers had to collect water spiders and recorded videos of their movements, analysing the mechanics that permit them to jump on and skim the surface of the water. They discovered that a water spider's legs have slightly curved tips which enable it to take off from the water's surface by rotating their legs inward."

Read the rest of Tiny Robot Can Leap On Water Without Making A Splash by Christopher ONeill Cabra.

"According to Gartner, by 2020, more than 7 billion people and businesses, and close to 35 billion devices, will be connected to the Internet. Whether [it's] Amazon with DASH or any other connected device, success to market via the IoT is dependent on what happens after the DASH button or any other IoT user interface is activated."

Read the rest of Behind the IoT: Success Hinges on Reliability, Scalability and Security by Chris Nguyen.

Your dose of inspiration

Mostly, this week we want to hear from you about your experiences contributing to Public Access -- what you like and what you don't, and any ideas that you have for the page. But if you're just dying for a new topic to write about, tell us about the last time you used a fax machine and why.