Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Netflix knocks off a buck for standard-def, single screen viewing | News | TechRadar


Monday, December 16, 2013

The $2.2 Trillion War For Your Living Room Begins Now

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: The Motley Fool <fool@foolsubs.com>
Subject: RE: The $2.2 Trillion War For Your Living Room Begins Now

RE: The $2.2 Trillion War for Your Living Room Begins Now

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Streaming and Cord-Cutting Take a Toll On the Pay-TV Industry


Streaming and Cord-Cutting Take a Toll On the Pay-TV Industry

from the I-want-to-watch-it-now dept.
First time accepted submitter ClarkSchultz writesHarris Interactive confirms that consumers streaming video content prefer the practice of binge viewing.The news isn't a big shocker to streaming concerns such as Netflix, Amazon, and Redbox Instant which have been mining viewer habits data, but it has an important read-through for broadcasters like CBS, NBC, Fox, and ABC. Though ad rates could fall if more viewers wait until series are available for streaming, the payoffs for quality content are proving lush: 1) CBS says it paid $700K per episode for streaming rights to Under the Dome 2) AMC Networks has pointed to Netflix as contributing to the success of Breaking Bad after initial ratings were soft. If streaming wins, who loses? Front and center is the Pay-TV industry. A wave of merger rumors (Charter/Cox/Time Warner Cable/Comcast/Dish Network) indicates the industry knows the trend of subscriber losses to the cord-cutting phenomenon will continue. An online TV initiative from a tech heavyweight like Sony, Apple, Google, or Intel could also disrupt the industry enough to put cable and satellite companies into an even bigger tailspin.

Saturday, December 07, 2013

FBI can secretly turn on laptop cameras without the indicator light

FBI can secretly turn on laptop cameras without the indicator light

Scary. Insane. Ridiculous. Invasive. Wrong. The Washington Post reports that the FBI has had the ability to secretly activate a computer's camera "without triggering the light that lets users know it is recording" for years now. What in the hell is going on? What kind of world do we live in?

Tuesday, December 03, 2013

Fwd: Press Release: Spiral Groove SG 1.1 Turntable Wins Stereophile Award, Will Be Exhibited at CES 2014

---------- Forwarded message ----------
Date: Tuesday, December 3, 2013
Subject: Press Release: Spiral Groove SG 1.1 Turntable Wins Stereophile Award, Will Be Exhibited at CES 2014


Spiral Groove SG1.1 Turntable Wins Stereophile Analog Components of 2013 Award, Will Be Showcased at CES 2014
BERKELEY, CALIFORNIA, December 3, 2013 - At CES 2014 Spiral Groove will be exhibiting its ultrahigh-end SG1.1 turntable, which has received a 2013 Products of the Year award from Stereophile magazine. Named one of two Analog Components of 2013 by the publication, the SG1.1 turntable and companion Centroid tonearm are designed to deliver ultimate-quality record playback.

The SG1.1 will be on exhibit at the Immedia suites at The Venetian Las Vegas, Venetian Tower Suites 30-125 and 30-127 (January 7 - 10, 2014) as part of a complete music system that also features QUALIA & COMPANY components and the Canalis Amerigo 2.0 loudspeaker.

The SG1.1 is engineered using Spiral Groove's Balanced Force Design approach, aimed at achieving the most elegant equilibrium of materials, performance, function, manufacturability and beauty.

The body of the SG1.1 utilizes two separate constrained layer platforms, separated by elastomers that mechanically decouple the two assemblies and form a dense, rigid and well-damped, non-resonant platform to which the working parts of the turntable can be precisely mounted and isolated from one another. The entire turntable weighs 70 lbs.
The SG1.1 offers electronically selectable 33-1/3 and 45 rpm speed control. The low voltage/high-torque AC synchronous motor is decoupled from the rest of the turntable for exceptionally quiet record playback. The inverted sapphire disc/hardened steel bearing and platter assembly is mounted in a manner that allows the platter to rotate freely without flexure or noise, and the platter is driven at the fulcrum of the bearing for wobble-free revolution. The platter utilizes an oversize stainless steel drive ring to provide increased inertia and speed stability.

The Centroid tonearm is built from materials selected for low mass, high strength and the ability to transfer mechanical energy away from the cartridge. The Centroid was designed using computer modeling techniques that simulate the forces exerted on the arm as the cartridge tracks the record, enabling the tonearm's design to precisely account for and compensate for the mechanical effects of arm/cartridge/record interactions.
The tonearm mounting board of the SG1.1 is fitted with a stainless steel bayonet mounting system that is easily removed from the turntable with the push of a button, enabling multiple arm and cartridge combinations to be pre-set up and readily swapped and installed, with perfect alignment every time.

The Spiral Groove SG1.1 turntable is currently available at a suggested retail price of $36,000 with Centroid arm and $30,000 without arm. Spiral Groove is distributed in the U.S. by Immedia, along with Canalis loudspeakers, Strange Attractors vibration control accessories and QUALIA & COMPANY audio components.

About Spiral Groove

Spiral Groove designs and manufactures turntables, pickup arms and accessories that embody the highest standards of precision engineering to convey music with exceptional fidelity and emotional involvement. The concept of Balanced Force Design is at the heart of every Spiral Groove product. The goal of Balanced Force Design is to achieve the most elegant equilibrium of materials, performance, function, manufacturability and beauty.

All Spiral Groove products are manufactured in Berkeley, California and distributed by Immedia. For more information please visit www.spiral-groove.com.
# # #

Spiral Groove, 2606 9th Street, Berkeley, CA 94710
Phone 510 559 2050 - Fax
510 559 1855 - www.spiral-groove.com

Thursday, November 21, 2013

HBO GO App Updated With Support for Google Chromecast


Fwd: Exciting OpenTok platform advancements

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: TokBox Inc. <marketing@tokbox.com>
Date: Thu, Nov 21, 2013 at 11:34 AM
Subject: Exciting OpenTok platform advancements
To: John.sokol 

We're announcing some exciting updates to the OpenTok platform at the WebRTC Conference and Expo this week. Here are a few highlights.

Platform News

Archiving & Playback (beta)

Add archiving capabilities to your applications with just a few lines of code.
Sign up to learn more

Android SDK for WebRTC (beta)

Create native Android applications that interop with both iOS and web.
Download now

Dynamic Frame Rate Controls

Allocate lower frame rates to individual streams for optimal user experience.
Learn more


OpenTok now supports TURN over TCP for firewall traversal, enabling WebRTC in restricted networking environments.
Learn more


Advancing WebRTC in Santa Clara

This week we were at the WebRTC Conference & Expo, speaking about the exciting new advancements to the OpenTok platform. Find out what we were up to.
Learn more

WebRTC News


WebRTC's Bright Future

We asked over a thousand professionals from around the world where they thought WebRTC was headed.
Learn more

Signing off,

The TokBox Team

115 Stillman Ave, San Francisco, CA 94107

Business: bizdev@tokbox.com Support: tokbox.com/opentok/support Feedback: OpenTok Survey

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

broken TV cost model

We place this on the Video Technology Blog, because it is:
an excellent essay by Deirdre Moen, wife of an excellent friend.
Deirdre is very nice person too.


(Same article in different places, each with a comment thread.)

Related piece:


Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Fwd: VITEC's HDM850+ for HEVC decoding over SDI HDMI - Available Now

Begin forwarded message:

From: "VITEC"
Date: November 19, 2013, 10:05:13 AM PST
Subject: VITEC's HDM850+ for HEVC decoding over SDI HDMI - Available Now

Decode and display HEVC clips or stream over SDI/HDMI

To view this email as a web page, go here.

VITEC's HEVC/H.265 Professional Decoder card




HEVC codec is on its way, be ready! Today, with the Stradis HDM850+ decoder board, it is possible to decode and display HEVC / H.265 clips or stream over SDI / HDMI.

HDM850+ is fully featured for professional broadcast applications such as content distribution, station/news automation, and quality control or simply for rendering/testing the latest video standards. Featuring unique frame accurate playback and compatible with HEVC, H.264 and MPEG-2 video standards (up to 4:2:2, 10 bits), HDM850+ is the most advanced and versatile decoder card available on the market.

HDM850+ is a PCIe based decoder for use by end users as well as integrators (SDK available). It decodes and displays video up to 1080p60 over 3G-SDI or HDMI in a standard PC platform.

Highlights of the HDM850+ broadcast decoder card

  • 3G-SDI and HDMI outputs up to 1080p60
  • HD/SD HEVC decode (compliant to HM reference decoder)
  • HD/SD H.264 & MPEG-2 - 4:2:2 & 4:2:0
  • Unique seamless frame accurate playback
  • Hardware scaler from any to any resolution
  • Genlock Input, RS-422 control, Full frame OSD
  • Powerful end user application
  • Livewire & Stradis SDK for integrators
  • PCIe (4 lanes), multiboard support


Shipping Now - HDM850+ and HDM850 firmware upgrade are available now through the VITEC worldwide dealer network.


For more information on the Stradis HDM850+ or other VITEC products, visit www.vitecmm.com.

 VITEC-The Leader in Video Innovations                                       

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This email was sent by: VITEC
931 Benecia Avenue Sunnyvale, CA 94085 United States

Monday, November 18, 2013

Bjork Explaining Television

Bjork Explaining Television Is Everything You'd Imagine Bjork Explaining Television to Be

"This is what an Icelandic poet told me. And I became so scared to television that I always got headaches when I watched it. Then, later on, when I got my Danish book on television, I stopped being afraid because I read the truth, the scientifical truth and it was much better."


White-Fi 802.11af

An overview of the IEEE 802.11af or White-Fi proposal for Wi-Fi using the TV White spaces using cognitive radio technology.

470 - 710MHz

White-fi is a term being used to describe the use of a Wi-Fi technology within the TV unused spectrum, or TV white space. The IEEE 802.11af working group has been set up to define a standard to implement this.

With a number of administrations around the globe taking a more flexible approach to spectrum allocations, the idea of low power systems that are able to work within portions of spectrum that may need to be kept clear of high power transmitters to ensure coverage areas do not overlap is being seriously investigated.

When using systems like white-fi, IEEE 802.11af that use TV white space, the overall system must not cause interference to the primary users. With processing technology developing further, this is now becoming more of a possibility.

Benefits of IEEE 802.11af, White-Fi

There are many benefits for a system such as IEEE 802.11af from using TV white space. While the exact nature of the IEEE 802.11af system has not been fully defined, it is still possible to see many of the benefits that can be gained:

  • Propagation characteristics:   In view of the fact that the 802.11af white-fi system operating the TV white spaces would use frequencies below 1 GHz, this would allow for greater distances to be achieved. Current Wi-Fi systems use frequencies in the ISM bands - the lowest band is 2.4 GHz and here signals are easily absorbed.
  • Additional bandwidth:   One of the advantages of using TV white space is that additional otherwise unused frequencies can be accessed. However, it will be necessary to aggregate several TV channels to provide the bandwidths that Wi-Fi uses on 2.4 and 5.6 GHz, to achieve the required data throughput rates. It is possible that vacant channels in any given area will vary widely in frequency and this presents some challenges in managing the data sharing across the different channels, although this has been successfully achieved in technologies such as LTE.

Looking at these benefits, it is believed that the White-Fi system offers sufficient advantages to enable development to be undertaken.

IEEE 802.1af white-fi technologies

In order for white-fi 802.11af to be able to operate, it is necessary to ensure that the system does not create any undue interference with existing television transmissions. To achieve this there are a number of technologies and rules that may be utilized.

  • Cognitive radio:   One way in which a white-fi system would be able to operate is to use cognitive radio technology;

    Note on Cognitive Radio:

    With pressure on radio spectrum increasing all the time, it is necessary to utilize the available spectrum as efficiently as possible. One method of helping to achieve this is utilize radio technology that is able to sense the environment and configure itself accordingly - Cognitive Radio. The technology is heavily dependent upon Software Defined Radio technology as the radio needs to be configurable according to the prevailing radio environment.

    Click on the link for further information about Cognitive Radio technology

    Using this technology, it will be possible for the white-fi, IEEE 802.11af system to detect transmissions and move to alternative channels.
  • Geographic sensing:   Another method that is favoured by many is geographic sensing. Although details are not fully defined, having a geographic database and a knowledge of what channels are available there is another way of allowing the system to avoid used channels.

Salient features

The table below gives a summary of the salient features of 802.11af.

Operating frequency range 470 - 710MHz
Channel bandwidth6MHz
Transmission power 20dBm
Modulation formatBPSK
Antenna gain 0dBi

The proposal for the implementation of White-Fi si sill in its draft or development stages. However it provides an effective way or accessing more radio spectrum in an area where available bandwidth is at a premium, and utilising the resource more effectively.

Friday, November 01, 2013

Google barge revealed as Google Glass showroom


Can Samsung's MultiScreen SDK Make TV Apps a Thing?


Secret LCD monitor

videos demonstrating the same concept:

This demonstration is 100% real. It's relatively simple to create your own.

Check out some extra footage here:

This video shows you how to create a secret LCD monitor. 

From YouTube description:
The results are amazing. If you are going to try and make your own, there are a few things to keep in mind. First, I would recommed using a monitor that you don't care about. I bought mine from a pawn shop for $20 dollars. Once you remove the polarized layer, you've pretty much made the monitor useless as to normal use. If you are good with repairs and that sort of thing, I'm sure you could buy a replacement filter to fix the monitor. So basically, just make sure you are ok with modifying whatever monitor you've chosen to use for this project. Once you have your monitor you need to remove the top layer, which is the polarized layer. It helps to remove the plastic frame from the front but it's not 100% necessary. Once you remove the plastic front, use a hobby knife to cut on the edge around the whole monitor. Press hard enough to make the cut but don't press too hard. That's once thing to keep in mind during this whole process is that you can completely destroy the monitor by damaging the actual LCD part of the screen. Once you make the 4 cuts, then pick a corner to start peeling the polarized layer. I used a hobby knife to "dig" under the layer so I could get a big enough piece to grab onto. Now, every monitor is different so you may experience this part a little different than the next person. You want to peel slowly to try and get the biggest pieces possible and also not to put too much force on the screen. This part could take several minutes to get all of the polarized layer off. Most LCD monitors have an antiglare layer "attached" to the polarized layer and both of those layers are glued so the hard surface of the LCD. So you may see these extra layers as you are removing them. If you're lucky you will be able to remove all 3 layers by just pulling it off. But it's likely that some glue will be left over. It's also possible that you will lift the polarized and antiglare layer but leave most of the glue. If you look closely in my video, you can see a few spots where the contrast is different. These are spots where the glue came off. If there are a lot of glue spots and it bothers you, it is possible to remove the glue by using paint thinner. But you have to be very careful. If you use the paint thinner, apply it to the glue spots and use a piece of plastic to gently scrape it off. Don't press too hard or you will destroy the monitor. Overall, I would recommend to stay away from the paint thinner and just live with the glue spots. 

Next you want to grab some glasses. I used a pair of the 3D glasses you get at the cinema. I never throw them in the recycle bin :). Anyway, you can open these glasses up and remove the "lenses". 

I ordered 2 - 6" X 6" sheets of polarized filters from a popular online science store. I traced the shape of the area where the lenses on the polarized sheets. I cut them out and placed them inside the frames. Before you cut the shape, make sure to note the proper angle of the polarized sheet with the monitor. I had to turn my sheet 45 degrees to get the correct angle. So when I traced the lens shape on the sheet, I turned the sheet 45 degrees and cut them. (In the video the sheet wasnt turned 45 degrees, but that was just a video mistake) 

So now you're ready for action. If you hook your monitor up to a computer and put on your glasses you should be able to see the screen just as normal. Anyone standing behind you will only be able to see a blank monitor. If you move far to the sides you can see a little bit of a negative image on the screen, but it's still very hard to make out.