Thursday, April 12, 2007

Do the Democrats Hate America? New Ties to the RIAA

The Democrats should have everything going for them right now. What do the do with it? They screw it up by hiring the Director of Communications for the RIAA, Jenni Engebretsen, as their Deputy CEO of Public Affairs for the Democratic National Convention in Denver.
Full Story from Gizmodo

CBS Content on Joost, Sling Media, Netvibes and more!

Brad Linder, my favorite writer for PVRWire (TVSquad) is reporting that CBS Interactive has announced partnerships with Joost, Sling Media, Netvibes, AOL, Microsoft, CNET, Comcast, Bebo, Brightcove, and Veoh to provide content including full-lenght television episodes and video clips. These will be advertiser-supported. Some of the content to be made available will include clips and episodes from CSI, The Late Show with David Letterman, Survivor, Showtime Championship Boxing, and CSTV Game of the Week.


As part of this agreement, CBS has created what they call the CBS Interactive Audience Network.


For anyone still doubting whether the future will be bringing different modes of television content delivery with vehicles such as Joost, I think this type of arrangement will become more and more common. Television as we know it is undergoing a change that will be dramatic.

For more information, go to Brad's article HERE

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Microsoft will stop allowing PC makers to install XP

PC makers are being told they will no longer receive Windows XP OEM by the years end. This is despite a strong, ongoing demand for the XP Operating System. Dell reportedly will reintroduce XP on several PC's to meet customer demand, but this will only last through this year.

Read the Entire APCMag Story

Monday, April 09, 2007

Seven Things That Would Make Beyond TV Nearly Perfect

What would make BeyondTV Nearly Perfect? I love my Beyond TV (and in smaller part Beyond Media) and I think Beyond TV is rock solid in stability. It does what it is supposed to very well. Still I am always wanting more. These are my top seven things that would make Beyond TV Nearly Perfect.

  1. Ability to tune any cable or satellite channels without the need of a cable box. QAM tuning is possible now thanks to the HDHomeRun, but only for unencrypted channels. What I want is something like CableCard support. Preferably without the DRM restrictions that don't allow me to stream that content to other TV's in the house.
  2. A flexible, HTPC front-end gui. This sounds innocent enough, but it is really important to the true, HTPC users. What I'm talking about is a Beyond-Media type front-end gui that runs Beyond TV and a host of other plugins that work seamlessly together. A menu that includes watch TV, watch movies, listen to music, check the weather, check your netflix or blockbuster que, watch previews etc. This gui front-end would be flexible enough to add or remove any components so that the gui only included what the user wanted. This is something BTV users have been waiting for forever and there are rumors that something might be in the works for later this year.
  3. Picture-In-Picture for those with more than one tuner. Simple request, but not available today with BTV.
  4. Extender for viewing/listening to all content over the internet. Much like Orb, but integrated into BeyondTV. You can do this now using BTV if you have a software encoder card or using DIVX, but it is far from perfect. Something like ORB that transcodes on the fly so it will work better with slower connections would be ideal. UPDATE: You can now watch BTV, recorded content across the internet using ccarlin's update to the webadmin. More on this HERE
  5. A setting to automatically record shows based on keywords or based on past viewing habits. Tivo and Sage have this ability today. I would prefer this to be an option you can turn on or off. There is an excellent plugin called BTV Negociator written by Fonceur that can do this and much more. This request is to have that functionality integrated into BTV. I'll write up a review/walk-through of BTV Negociator sometime soon.
  6. Ability to have multiple servers that work together. This would mean you could have a global "record Lost" setting and it would span both servers and record using the server that has a tuner available. Just to clarify, you can have multiple servers with BTV now and multiple clients (BTVLink) as well. What I'm asking for is for a way for those mulitple servers work together to schedule recordings and resolve conflicts for recordings using both servers.
  7. Integrated feed support. RSS feeds would be generated from your scheduled recordings, watched recordings, recordings list, movies and music on the server etc.

Why did I title this "Nearly" Perfect? Because I'm a HTPC junky and I will always want more...

UPDATE: I've added two additional "wishlist" items in recent post here if you're interested

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