No alarms and no surprises, please.

Monday, September 18, 2006

It's Beautiful

I can't decide what's better. The play by Eli to get the ball there under pressure, or the play by Plaxico Burress to make the catch. On second thought, I don't care. It's just beautiful

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

Oh Fuck Me. We're screwed.

What's scarier than Bush behind the wheel of the hegemon, directed by neo-cons? Bush behind the wheel of the hegemon, directed by Jesus.

This ain't a political blog. There are enough of those. But I need to say something. It's time to seriously acknowledge that this war wasn't the creation of armchair neocon generals in Washington with a simple-minded view of the region out to secure our oil amidst the bonfire of democracy. I now believe that our president has entered us into a religious war and that he used WMDs and Saddam to get us crazy non-believers to go along with it.

I humbly refer you to my daily read, Froomkin's White House Briefing of August 4th, 2006. In it, Dan enumerates several examples of bible study and visits from apocalyptic prophecy experts, AT THE WHITE HOUSE. He gave the column the title, "What's the motivation?". That question has been answered for me.

Bush has many times expressed his sense that he was "called" to be the President. Could that have meant that God hates Social Security or the Death Tax?

Nope. I think it can mean only one thing. He wants to deplane from Air Force one just in time to greet Jesus at the Wailing Wall.

The scariest thing I've read in a long time

They just had something like this on one of the episodes of Stephen King's Nightmares and Dreamscapes. A dude gets bitten by snake while playing golf and they all think he's dead, when he's really just paralyzed. Then they're about to start the autopsy and.... Yikes.

This is expressly why I've told Mrs. Fridge that I need to be euthanized pronto, should something like this happen to me. I can't be trapped in the ol' noggin. No way.

I'm a frickin' genius. It really is iTV.

iTV is coming. What it really is when it gets, we'll have to wait and see.

Until then, the short explanation is that this is a doohickey you can connect to your TV that will stream video from a Mac or PC. It's apparently about the size of a paperback book. The key thing is that you will be able to purchase and download video from iTunes and play it on your TV instead of your itty-bitty iPod screen.

Not too shabby. Here's the rub:

"Apple’s new movies are delivered in a higher-resolution format than the television shows it now sells. The current videos are available in a 320-by-240-pixel format. Mr. Jobs went to great lengths to explain how the new movies and newly added TV content, at 640 by 480 pixels, will offer a substantial increase in visual clarity.

The movies will have lower resolution than commercial DVD’s, which are generally formatted at 720 by 480 pixels, however, and will take several hours to download at standard broadband data rates. "

Ok, I missed an episode of LOST, downloaded for 2 bucks and watched it on the laptop. That was kinda cool. I missed the last two episodes of 24 and downloaded them. Then I hooked up an S-Video connection to the laptop and it was kinda lousy picture quality. With many of the early adopter-types already having adopted HDTVs with much higher resolution (1024 and up), why would they want this? I don't see it.

Color me not so impressed.

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Series 3 actually available.... Wow

Box details are here, as is the big price tag - $800! I guess I'll have to wait until the price comes down into the 500 dollar range.

One of the features that is there, but not talked about yet, because the latest version of the software doesn't yet support it (probably because of piracy concerns) is the SATA connection. This will ultimately allow the user to expand the storage of HD video by plugging in an external hard drive. Likely this is not yet available because TiVo is still negotiating the technology by which to do this. A Hollywood that props itself up with DVD sales can't just allow any old schmuck to take HD Video off his TiVo box. There will need to be DRM. But TiVo can be a leader in this arena because it has a population of dedicated early adopters.

CNet reviews the TiVo Series 3

The final rating? Excellent. The drawback? Wicked expensive. Damn.

Monday, September 11, 2006

iTV? No, how bout iCable? iSatellite?

Interesting article about how Apple still has yet to enter the TV fray and yet everyone is anxiously awaiting it, and even more importantly, expecting it.

I must say that I am a hard core TiVo guy. And many people compare them to Apple, primarily because both of them are seriously concerned with design. Whereas many companies will simply slap together a bunch of bits and cobble it together into a product, neither TiVo nor Apple will do so. They will not be rushed, and basically gamble their success on the ability to do better what they cannot do more quickly.

This leads to some agonizing waiting for those of us who love their products. For example, when TiVo came out with the Series2 Dual Tuner DVR, I was ecstatic. Finally, two shows at once! This is of course common functionality for CableCo DVRs but their software is gawd-awful. I can't stand it. Most of my friends have already made the leap to HDTV. Why have I not? I won't give up my TiVo. Series 3 is coming soon, though and will be the best yet.

Can Apple break into the TV Market? Maybe. If they do, they'll be entering a market that is cluttered with products and manufacturers. iPod succeeds because it created a market. iTunes, the same thing. But the TV market is much more like the PC market. A frontier-like open market where price beats product. This is one where a company like Dell can dominate a company like Apple that makes a better product. It's not Apple's strength to battle with Sony, Panasonic and the host of knockoffs sold at Wal-Mart.

So, when Jobs has his next dog and pony show here's hoping that he doesn't say they're building a Home Media PC. Or if they are, it's something so new and exciting that we can't even be sure it will work. That's what Apple does best. Please don't just give me iTivo.