Tune in vs. Available

October 06, 2005

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What you always here on the commercials is on the order of:
"Tune in Thursday at 9-8 Central".
Things like Tivo have been around for a while now, but we are still in the Network Control paradigm. If they have their way it would stay like that till the end of time. But more and more technology is creeping in. One of the things that I'm waiting for is when networks start saying "Available starting at 9-8 Central".
In the ideal situation, once a show has been broadcast the network (or whoever owns the rights to the specific content) would then make it available for whoever wants to consume it in what ever way they want to. Think of it as Network backed video podcasting. This is better than the Tivo approach which is a solution that you have to have in your living room. It moves it out to the world at large so that you can access content even if you don't have the channel it was originally distributed on.
Of course, this already happens. Albeit on a small scale and without the network's permission. Take a show like Battlestar Galactica. It airs Friday nights on Sci-Fi. Thanks to a combination of its geek overtones and the fact that it's one of the very best shows out right now, you don't need to get Sci-Fi to watch it. As long as you are willing to wait a few days you can pick up DVD quality versions of the show on the net.
There is added benefit in that those versions generally have the commercials removed. This is where the networks need to get smart, if the would make versions available that they produced, they could populate with commercials. Sure most folks would fast forward thru them, but in general they would still be there. General consumers would take what's available easily instead of trying to find hacked versions where someone removed the commercials.
(Incidentally, there is some research to suggest that people actually have a higher commercial recall when they fast forward thru commercials than if they play thru in real time. Turns out that when people fast forward they have to get very consciously involved in what they are looking at instead of just tuning it out.)
Anyway, I hope that in the future we can do more with our entertainment. All the technology to allow it is place. It's the old school thinking of the content producers and advertisers that are reducing what we can do with it. With luck, some tech kids will grow up and take over a small studio and get it setup the way they would like.
– Tags: tagTV


New Music

October 06, 2005

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Check out "Hiatus on the Horizon". I've heard a couple of tracks so far and like them.
– Tags: tagMusic


Odd recommendations

October 06, 2005

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Just logged into Netflix. One of the features it provides is recommendations based on what you like. The two it just gave me are "The Muppet Movie" and "Stalag 17". Me thinks you could read into that that my taste in movies is relatively varied.
– Tags: tagMovies
P.S. spell check didn't know the word "Muppet" or "Stalag".


Serenity Now

October 04, 2005

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I just saw Serenity. If you would like to know what I think, read the first comment. Please note, that it may contain a spoiler.


States

October 04, 2005

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For those times when you can't remember the abbreviation of the state you are trying to send a letter to.
http://www.usps.com/ncsc/lookups/usps_abbreviations.html


Not so much with the infrared

October 03, 2005

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It would have been too easy. I'm trying to do some infrared flash photography. The attempt was to take a piece of slide film that had been developed before it was exposed (so that it was black) and tape it over a strobe. The idea being that slide film is supposed to transmit infrared even if the film is totally black.

The problem, it would seem, is that the camera I'm shooting with (a Canon 10D) has an internal filter that effectively blocks the infrared portion of the spectrum from reaching the sensor. So, no go there.

What I'm trying to do is get a setup where I can shoot bands with a strobe setup without having to gun them in the face with a blast of light every time I fire off a shot. If money were no object, I'd just get one of these modded cameras that has a clear filter instead of the blocking on:
http://www.sciencecenter.net/hutech/canon/index.htm

Guess I'll have to make do with either available light or letting the strobe loose.

– Tags: tagPhotography


New Program and Priority Modes

October 03, 2005

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In the good old days of photography, you put in a roll of film and then had two variables that you could change to control exposure, the f/stop and the shutter speed, for the next 12/24/36 shots. Depending on which generation of film camera you shot with, you would have the following options:
1) M - Manually set the aperture and the shutter speed.
2) A/Av - You set the aperture and the camera automatically sets the shutter speed for you.
3) S/Tv - You set the shutter speed and the camera sets the aperture automatically.
4) P - The camera sets both the aperture and the shutter speed automatically. (There are lots of versions of "Program" mode that tell the camera to try to do different things, but in all cases it handles both settings for you.)
ISO is a constant in all these cases. This makes sense as there was no practical way to change film between each shot (and yes, I'm talking about 35, 120 or other roll film cameras. Don't be a smart ass and say that if you shoot with 4x5 or other sheet film formats you can change ISO with each shot.)
With digital, things are different. The sensor in the camera can be setup to read at any available ISO at any time. Between every shot if you wanted to. So, the question becomes, why not add option 5 to the above list. Call it "PISO".
All three of the variables, f/stop, shutter speed, ISO would be set automatically in this mode. Theoretically, at least some point and shoots do this if you set their ISO to Auto. So, why not kick it into digital SLRs. I'll grant you that I would almost never use it with my main camera. I keep a point and shoot handy when I don't want to think about anything. But, it sure would be a nice option to have, especially when shooting for fun in dramatically changing lighting conditions, or when you've had more than your fair share of drinks.
– Tags: tagPhotography


Invictus

October 03, 2005

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The name of my high school year book was Invictus. If I ever knew there was a peom by the same name I had forgotten until recently. Turns out, it's a good one.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Invictus


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