Archive for February, 2006

HDTV news

And so we got our HDTV and DVR combo from Comcast yesterday. I can’t say that I am fully happy with it. We were given a Motorola DTC-6412 model, which works well with 480p and 720p resolutions, but we encountered problems with the 1080i resolution (there was a certain “wave” on the screen). So we set the box to 480p and we are happy with the 15 HDTV channels that exist so far. Quality is ok on the HDTV channels and on most digital channels.

But the quality of the analog channels is now much worse than before! All channels from 02 to 80 are twice as bad than they were before. I did some googling, and indeed, the Motorola decoders SUCK at boosting the analog channels, lots of people are unhappy with that cable box apparently for that reason alone. Other than that, we are happy with our cable upgrade. HDTV looks ok, DVR is useful.

iPod leather cases == Unbelievable

This is just a major disservice to the Apple customer base. I mean, how the fuck is it possible for Apple to sell a leather case for iPods for a hundrend bucks? It probably costs Apple about $5 to make them and package them! To prove to you that this is a major raping of its customers, the iPod Nano leather case is not any cheaper than the iPod 5G case, even if the Nano case uses about 40% less leather. UPDATE: Haha, this one is cool.

For the rest of the products announced today by Apple, I commented at Thom’s blog. The boombox/speaker idea is stupid in general, and the Mac Mini still has no microphone jack or a (faster) desktop hdd instead of a laptop one (although it now comes with a Line-In, thanks God).

On a different note, I might be getting the Dell Inspiron B120 laptop. Good value for the money. Only a firewire port is missing (I need it for my camcorder), I am happy with all its other features it comes with for just $499.

Report: George Michael drug charge

“Pop star George Michael has been arrested in London on drugs charges after being found slumped at the wheel of his car, according to a British tabloid newspaper report.”

Artists.

Most of the ones that have money they throw it all away on drugs. What freaking waste of time, money and health.

Idiots.

Software that doesn’t exist or could be better on Linux

1. A *usable* mass-rename utility. After you use Krename and that other KDE app to rename many files at once, and then you use this BeOS one: http://www.pecora.de/pecorename/#Intro_e you finally understand why the users who actually used BeOS loved it. Because as in MacOSX there is no “ugly app” to be found, on BeOS there is no unusable app to be found among the major third party ones. That app was ELEGANT.
2. Again, a usable conversion utility.
3. A screenwriting software, like Final Draft: http://www.finaldraft.com/
4. Video clip manager. No, I am not talking about a VCR/DVD personal database, I am talking about clip manager, just like this: http://aquafadas.com/
5. PDA/phone sync, flash mounting AND automatic internet sharing, like with Activesync. Yes, I know of OpenSync. It is still in its infancy and it doesn’t go anywhere any time soon.
6. Good videocam support for AIM, MSN and Y!.
7. Bluetooth on Linux sucks just because most of the things have to be done by hand. KDE got a front-end for a few BT profiles, but it’s UI is scattered all around the place. Best UI for Bluetooth: Windcom/Broadcom’s on PocketPC.
8. ACPI still sucks.
9. After all these years, there is still not a reliable imovie-like and idvd-like app out there. It seems that the Diva project is near death.
10. Gimp needs rework before anyone can take it seriously. Yes, it must become more photoshop-like. Not because OSS should clone closed source software, but because Photoshop must be doing something right for being the No1 raster app out there for more than 10 years now.

HDTV is coming soon

We were discussing with JBQ about getting HDTV for more than a year now, but we decided to go ahead with it only tonight, right after our 4-year old AT&T (now Comcast) cable box died. We ordered not only a new cable box, but also a second HDTV box that is also a DVR (not sure yet if we are getting the 80 or 120 GB version). We will be receiving the new devices on Monday.

Earlier today we bought this system selector and we also connected a PMP/PVR (records on a 30 GB drive), the Neuros Recorder II (records on compact flash and memory stick pro) and the Linux-based TVisto video jukebox (250 GB drive), and we can iterate between all these and other devices (PS2, DVD etc) in a click of a button! Our 55″ Sharp HDTV is gonna love it getting all these inputs… 😉

Most handsome male, like, ever

Of course, it’s John Taylor, the bassist of Duran Duran. I wanted to marry him when I was, like, 12. 🙂

Little I knew back then that he was a cocaine addict and an alcoholic. Supposedly he’s clean nowdays.

Hunting madness

Why would anyone shoot such beautiful birds like the swans are? Swans mate for life. If you kill one of them, the other one will eventually die or live all alone for the rest of its life (and they can live up to 25 years). It sucks having bloody idiotic humans killing animals just for fun. Hunting was necessary to bring food to the table. But today, humans don’t NEED to hunt. There are super markets. And especially today where the wild life has shrinked so much, having these “hunters” going out doing their “sport”, is a CRIME against this planet and all its life on board.

I hope someone shoots their asses. Please bring over a couple hundrend more Dick Cheneys clones and set them free in the woods.

War technology

I am watching some Luftwaffe documentaries on History Channel right now and I am amazed at the stuff the Germans came up during the WWII. Amazing crafts like the Focke-Wulf TA183 or the first stealth plane ever. Sure, the Americans and English also made huge strides in technology during the 5-6 years of the war, but the Germans have created some amazing stuff, mostly in airplane tech. What amazes me the most is how productive humans can be and move forward in technology 4x faster than normally, when they are under pressure.

Friggin IDIOTS

Revenge attacks against Muslims killed at least 20 people in the southeastern Nigerian city of Onitsha on Wednesday after days of anti-Christian violence killed dozens in the mainly Muslim north. The slaughter raised the death toll from five days of religious riots fueled by political tensions in Africa’s most populous country to at least 66, and possibly many more.

This is why Africa is still in the dark ages (no pun indended). I wonder when these people down there will get a fucking grip and stop killing each other. And I am not talking just about Nigeria or just about religious riots. 80% of the African countries are in the same violent page too.

Wake up people! Stop killing each other and take care of your AIDS, food and school problems!

Lost

UPDATE: I developed a theory about ‘Lost’. 🙂

Spent the entire weekend watching all 38 episodes of ‘Lost’. Before that, I had only watch bits and pieces of the second season, and while I did have an idea of what’s going on, I hadn’t seen any of the episodes of the first season to have a full picture of the mystery involved.

Well, watching the series from the beginning, I must say that this is the most intense TV show ever made. I always keep saying that “ST: The Next Generation” is the best TV show ever made (seasons 3-6), but I think ‘Lost’ has surpassed it in a number of ways.

However, I must say, the second season is much slower than the first one, and has only half the intensity. Watching the show back to back, I saw a big difference in the storyline pace on the second season. If you have never watched ‘Lost’, I highly suggest you buy the first season on DVD.