st1712: Is Disney Spying on your Children? [Podcast]

Keeping your children safe on line

The Walt Disney company has been slapped with a lawsuit alleging violation of COPPA. This law says that companies can not collect personal information on children without permission from their parents. In 42 identified apps, Disney may be violating that law. What does this mean, how do you protect your child’s privacy? We explore this and more in this episode.

Here is the full list of the apps in the lawsuit:


“Beauty and the Beast”

“Perfect Match”

“Cars Lightening League”

“Club Penguin Island”

“Color by Disney”

“Disney Color and Play”

“Disney Crossy Road”

“Disney Dream Treats”

“Disney Emoji Blitz”

“Disney Gif”

“Disney Jigsaw Puzzle!”

“Disney LOL”

“Disney Princess: Story Theater”

“Disney Store Become”

“Disney Story Central”

“Disney’s Magic Timer by Oral-B”

“Disney Princess: Charmed Adventures”

“Dodo Pop”

“Disney Build It Frozen”

“DuckTales: Remastered”

“Frozen Free Fall”

“Frozen Free Fall: Icy Shot”

“Good Dinosaur Storybook Deluxe”

“Inside Out Thought Bubbles”

“Maleficent Free Fall”

“Miles from Tomorrowland: Missions”

“Moana Island Life”

“Olaf’s Adventures”

“Palace Pets in Whisker Haven”

“Sofia the First Color and Play”

“Sofia the First Secret Library”

“Star Wars: Puzzle DroidsTM”

“Star WarsTM: Commander”

“Temple Run: Oz”

“Temple Run: Brave”

“The Lion Guard”

“Toy Story: Story Theater”

“Where’s My Water?”

“Where’s My Mickey?”

“Where’s My Water? 2”

“Where’s My Water? Lite/Where’s My Water? Free”

“Zootopia Crime Files: Hidden Object”

st1708: Solving Crime One Smart Phone at a Time [Podcast]

Tracking apps are becoming more useful in helping the police solve crimes.  In this episode we explore a specific case and talk about how you might want to set up your own phone.


How to Track Your Lost or Stolen Android Phone

How to Set Up and use Find My iPhone


st1701: 2016 – A SmartTech Year in Review [Podcast]

It is amazing how, when a year comes to an end, we tend to forget all of the things that have happened.  2016 has been a crazy year in a lot of ways, but it has been a diverse technology related year.  So in this episode I review some of the technological events of note through the eyes of the SmartTech podcast.  Be sure to share your favorite technology related events or gadgets in our comment section or on our Facebook page.

Illustration provided by Pond5


st1604: Apple VS the FBI: Balancing personal privacy with national security [Podcast]

Steve Cook published a letter on the Apple website explaining how, in their opinion, the recent request and court order by the FBI unduly put the security and safety of millions of American citizens is peril.

All Rights Reserved © Stuart Carlson

In other words, the FBI wants Apple to rewrite their iOS operating system to remove encryption and security safeguards, update the phone of Syed Rizwan Farook, and make the data on the phone available to the FBI to fulfill a search warrant.  Farook and Tashfeen Malik entered a holiday party in San Bernardino, CA, and killed or injured 31 people in what is presumed to be a terrorist attack.  Apple argues that they do not have the encryption key or the information stored on the phone in a readable format and have done all they can do to assist the FBI in their investigation.  The FBI disagrees.  In this episode, we explore the danger of the government or anybody for that matter having a master key to all data on all devices.  Is our loss of privacy worth the claimed increase in personal and national security?

Tim Cook’s Letter to the public

Apple answers specific security questions

Although I don’t agree with his conclusions, I think this is one of the most straight forward rebuttals to the argument I make in the podcast.  As you will read, I don’t think his conclusions are accurate.  But it is a good read!   Cut The Crap, Apple, And Open Syed Farook’s iPhone

st1601: And the Government Drones On [Podcast]

All about how the government wants to regulate your new drone.

A 12-year old boy opens a large package under the tree as his mom looks on with a tired smile. “A drone!” the boy exclaims. “Just what I wanted! Thanks, Mom! Can I fly it, now? Can I, please?”
“I’m sorry, hon,” his mom sighs, “but you’re going to have to wait. Daddy’s still on the FAA website.”

Photo by Pond5

And there you have it. For the first time in the history of Christmas, an agency of the United States government will require you to register your child’s toy before he can begin to play with it.
Why? Good question.
This is the opening paragraph from an article titled “The FAA’s Drone Registration Requirement: A Brief Review” Posted on December 20, 2015 on

If you were one of the estimated ¾’s of a million people who, this christmas got a drone, be advised, the federal government, specifically the FAA, has enacted new rules which require you, if you are 13 or over, or if you are under 13, someone who is 13 or over does this for you, to register your drone on the FAA website and pay a $5.00 registration fee before you fly your drone. You must also clearly mark your government supplied registration number on your drone. The federal government calls these drones, Unmanned Aircraft System (UAS). So really model airplanes would also apply to the rule change.

Is this a good thing?  How does this affect regular drone owning citizens.  We talk about this and more on this episode.

Until a court rules otherwise, here are the new rules which I share to keep my faithful smarttech listeners out of federal prison…
Effective December 21, 2015, anyone who owns a small unmanned aircraft of a certain weight must register with the Federal Aviation Administration’s Unmanned Aircraft System (UAS) registry before they fly outdoors. People who previously operated their UAS must register by February 19, 2016. People who do not register could face civil and criminal penalties.

Who must register a UAS?
The owner must be:
• 13 years of age or older. (If the owner is less than 13 years of age, a person 13 years of age or older must register the small unmanned aircraft.)
• A U.S. citizen or legal permanent resident.

Which unmanned aircraft do I have to register?
Owners must register their UAS online if it meets the following guidelines:
• Weighs more than 0.55 lbs. (250 g) and less than 55 lbs. (25 kg). Unmanned Aircraft weighing more than 55 lbs. cannot use this registration process and must register using the Aircraft Registry process.
• Owners must register their UAS by paper if it meets the following guidelines:
• Your aircraft is used for commercial purposes.
• Your aircraft is used for other than hobby and recreation.
• Your aircraft is greater than 55 lbs.
• You intend to operate your aircraft outside of the United States.

How do I register my UAS?
• It costs only $5 to register your UAS and the process is simple and web-based. Registration is free for the first 30 days. Some things you’ll need before you get started:
• An email address
• Credit or Debit card
• Physical address and mailing address (if different from physical address)

Your registration is valid for three years. Once you receive a registration number, you can use it on all of your unmanned aircraft if they meet the online registration criteria. You must mark the registration number on all aircraft you own.
If you register your drone before January 20, 2016 you will receive a refund of your $5.00.



FAA Drone Registration Site