27 August, 2010

2004-2010; Bad Poetry examples and non-technical bloggerings

A friend's talk of writing lyrics reminded me of my "mock poetry" postings, so I hunted some of them down.

For a while, I was into the whole Suburban Anti-Hero thing:

Then I got to browsing, and thought it a good idea to provide you with a scythe with which to cut through the long grasses of my blog, so I continued on:

25 August, 2010

Android (DROID) Game Trials Not Available in the Android Market; GAMELOFT

    These games are not in the Android market.  Navigate to them, via your phone, and make sure your 'Unknown sources' is checked on, to allow you to install non-Market apps.  [For you HTC Incredible users, go to Settings|Applications to turn that on.]

    Link: http://www.gameloft.com/android-hd-games/

    Article about it: http://drippler.com/htc-droid-incredible/gameloft-offers-a-try-before-you-buy-on-android-hd-games/

24 August, 2010

u-Verse;New upgrades for U-verse Total Home DVR

    This morning I went through and changed most shows to save only three items.  A few, like the wife's Oprah and Dr. Phil, I set to save five items.  This new functionality allowed me to add the NBC Nightly News (save 1 copy), Jimmy Fallon (1), Letterman (2), etc.  I dumbed The Soup and Attack of the Show down to 1 or 2 copies, etc.

    This will allow us to re-add shows, that my kids like, but rarely watched, which I deleted because they ended up with 12 or 13 copies a piece.

    Good times.

Dan wrote:
    We finally have the ability to perform the functions that we  had on our ReplayTV DVR back in 2004.

    I checked them out and they work as advertised.

    Unfortunately, the online interface is still rudimentary and does not let one edit existing recordings so nicely.  Some day... .

    Anyway, we can now keep a "scrolling" number of 'Clifford The Big Red Dog' without having to continually add and remove it from the line-up, as episodes build up.  I've set it to keep 5 of the most recent, and be done with it.

    Also, just like in the old days, we can set which series will "win" in a scheduling conflict fight.

    It's about time.

    - Dan

      New upgrades for U-verse Total Home DVR (from a message from U-verse received in my inbox):

AT&T is rolling out automated upgrades to the Total Home DVR <https://www.att.com/esupport/sharedSegments/glossaryDisplay.jsp?word=DVR> experience for all U-verse TV subscribers on a market-by-market basis.  With this rollout, U-verse subscribers will have new and more robust DVR capabilities, including the ability to do the following:

    * Rank the priority of scheduled programs (Series Priority).
    * Determine how many episodes of a series to keep stored on disk
      (Keep at Most).
    * Delete all recordings of a series with a single click (Bucket
    * Add channels to the Favorites listing while tuned to TV
      (Favorites Panel), and more.


U-verse TV subscribers will automatically get the upgrades by the end of July.  Each of the new enhancements are described below.


   1. *Series Priority* - Subscribers can now manage the priority of
      their household's scheduled series recordings using the Series
      Priority feature. When subscribers access this feature they are
      presented with a listing of all the series recordings which are
      scheduled in the home, and subscribers can rank the series
      priority to more effectively manage recording conflicts when
      they occur. Previously, the last subscriber-scheduled recording
      was considered the highest priority in case of recording conflict.

   2. *Keep at Most* - When subscribers set up a series recording,
      they will have additional record setting options to dictate how
      many episodes of the series are kept on disk. In addition,
      subscribers can also have the option of setting the "Series Keep
      Until" option for the recording while setting up the recording.
      Series recordings recycle based upon this setting. The older
      episodes are deleted to make room for new episodes.

   3. *Bucket Delete* - Subscribers will have the ability to delete
      all recordings of a series with one button click from the
      Recorded TV: Series menu, instead of deleting individual
      episodes. Previously, subscribers had to delete individual
      episodes one at a time.

   4. *Favorites Panel* - Favorites is a sub-panel to the options
      panel that allows subscribers to easily add channels to their
      favorite listing while tuned to full-screen TV.


*Additional Total Home DVR improvements:*


Easier ways to access and use the DVR features from your Remote Control, including the following:

    * The ability to delete letters using the Remote control Back button.
    * More prominent Clock display.
    * New order of presentation for recorded programs, by date
      Recorded, date Scheduled, and Settings.


Ability to playback recordings even after you lose rights to a channel.  For example:

    * If you record a program on HBO during a "free HBO weekend," you
      will still be able to view the recording after the free weekend
    * Or, if you record a program on a channel that is later removed
      from your channel lineup, you will still able to view the recording.

06 August, 2010

My answers to Roku's Customer Survey; Select Questions

What would you tell your friend or colleague about Roku?

That, although it is not 1080p, the 720p is more than acceptable for quality. [Edit: Roku now offers a 1080p version for the same price as I bought the 720p version back in the day. d.r., 2011]. If one has a decent Internet connection (6m or better), one can stream flawless video. Unlike the PS3, which only offers Netflix, the Roku offers a variety of channels. Last night I was really in the mood for a just-released film, so I rented one from Amazon, via the Roku, and saved a couple of bucks from what it would have cost me to rent it via U-Verse.

Although a recent firmware update bricked my Roku's WiFi, the service folks were quick to respond and had a new unit to me within just a few days.

The service itself, plus the customer service, have made this an indispensable piece of hardware in my home.

Why do you prefer to use your Roku for streaming video? Please be as specific as possible.

Although I own multiple devices capable of the task (PS3, Wii, DROID phone, PC's), the Roku a) offers multiple, easily accessible channels -- the differentiator, as the others offer multiple channels too, but they are easier to find on the Roku by my family members -- and b) the device is dedicated to streaming video, making the remote control simple, and my family less likely to call me in to help them. My 10 year old is the house expert, as she should be.

Is there anything else you'd like to share with us?

I try to get the word out, to my friends, via the usual social methods (even in-person), but they seem apathetic...until they see me demo the device. Having an online movie, of someone demonstrating the interface, that I could point them to, would likely sell more of your product. The new Netflix movie is great; it shows off the interface well. There should be one for the main home screen too, to remind people it is not just a Netflix box. I believe this to be key for you, at a time when the PS3, various Blu-Ray players, the Wii, etc., all offer Netflix streaming too. Roku is more than just a Netflix box. Oh, and if you were to add a server feature, that would allow one to play media files, stored on a network device (such as Windows media player or a drive hanging off the network somewhere), you'd be unbeatable.

I'm a fan.