Re¢ently

  1. MT Mail Must Get Through

    brian on 2005.01.31
    at 04:44 pm

    In a follow up on my ruminations about Montana and Weather from an early few posts, I’d like to link to this story in the Montana Standard about a mail carrier and her appointed rounds on the longest rural mail route in the state. Very cool, especially the insight on her attitude and her choice of vehicles.

    Posted in: Weather

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  2. Bostonian Apprentice

    brian on 2005.01.31
    at 02:59 pm

    Speaking of The Apprentice, does one of these guys look familiar? Six degrees disclosure, I am 4 degrees from he. No, I don’t know him, or the degree closest to him at all. But I do enjoy his presence on the show, and we’re pulling for him! (Even though everyone knows the taping is already complete)

    Posted in: Media

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  3. Legalizing TV Torrents

    brian on 2005.01.31
    at 02:16 pm

    I read somewhere this morning that networks were investigating how much a viewer might pay (per view) for their favorite show that they can watch when they want to. This made think about when people have to use BitTorrent to download their favorite show when the networks change their schedules to put your two favorite shows on at the same time, and you don’t have a dual-tuner TiVO to get on the record/watch goodness.

    The result of the torrent would be a high-quality version of the show, with commercials conveniently extracted. Since TV is clearly supported by advertising and advertising judged by ratings (which don’t count BT downloads, obviously)… this is a recipe for disaster for your favorite show: if everyone BTs the show, and doesn’t watch it over the cable box, there’s no ratings for the show, and it gets dropped, despite the unmeasured popularity of the show itself.

    What if, instead of charging micropayments, the networks simply followed Salon’s highly successful lead of day passes where any reader can have full access to a pay-for -content piece after watching a short, but highly-targeted ad. In the case of a TV episode, I’d say one of these ads for access to a network-hosted torrent (which of course, would route people away from pirate-torrent sites which would indirectly reduce pirate content’s popularity).

    If I had a legal way of downloading an episode of my favorite show in exchange for a day-pass-esque few minutes, I certainly feel it would be a fair exchange, a fair payment, if you would. Would you?

    There is a demo available! Someone (and I’m not suggesting you or anyone try this) could try this experiment at home. Locate an episode of NBC’s “The Apprentice” online and download via BT. Then go to Yahoo!‘s online Apprentice shill site. Look around, check out tie-ins to BK, Levis, Pepsi, Genworth, all the other companies that are pimped on the show, or pick up a Donald Trump Bobblehead doll.. I’d say that constitutes fair trade… NBC/Yahoo! Get you only a click or two away from buying their products… much more beneficial to them than a sign on top of a computer screen that says “Yahoo! Local.” Eyes and clicks. I’d almost guarantee a bump of purchases. And enjoy the show!

    Posted in: Media · Technology

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  4. Donationware Music

    brian on 2005.01.31
    at 02:06 pm

    I’ve just become aware of the existence of the donation-ware Chemical Brothers Remixed , where you can torrent a full remixed album (unavailable elsewhere) for free and it’s sanctioned OK by the band. The ask that you donate a CD’s worth of money (but leave it up to you) to their suggested charity.

    The group that made the remix, Always Outsiders, Never Outdone also had a similar effort with The Prodigy .

    Posted in: Music

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  5. New PowerBooks

    brian on 2005.01.31
    at 01:35 pm

    Hi, all. You may notice that I usually don’t blog about new Apple product releases. But since Jake asked me to, I’ll point out a few less noticeable, but seriously cool, upgrades to the new line of PowerBookG4s . Everyone can see the speed bump and the price drop but here’s a few things you might miss:

    • Scrolling touchpad. No longer do you need to turn to third party software if you care to scroll using your touchpad, you can now scroll with built-in drivers.
    • New Bluetooth 2.0. Improves speeds from 1.0 to 3mbps. These G4 portables are the first computers to offer Bluetooth 2.0+EDR (enhanced data rate) in the world. Still backwards compatible with BT 1.0, of course.
    • Dual DVI technology. Some of you may know that Apple’s gargantuan 30 HD display requires two DVI connections to move all those pixels. Now Apple has graphics in a portable that can support that: standard in the 17”, optional on the 15” Stock 15”‘s and 12”‘s can use the 23”‘s as max.
    • Sudden Motion Sensing. You may have seen IBMs adds regarding dropping your co-worker’s laptop while at the lunch counter. This is still a bad idea (dropping any electronic device), but now Apple’s portable hard drives can go a little further in attempting to lock down their moving parts to “brace” for impact. Still, don’t drop your laptop.
    • Super SuperDrives: DVD-burning is now supported in the DVD+R/RW disc format as well as DVD-R/RW. And does so at 8x speed, if you have 8x discs.
    • Up to 100mb hard drives available. All drives (60, 80, 100) come as 5400rpm mechanisms. All machines have minimum 512mb of DDR RAM installed at the factory.

    Man, these make look at my 867mhz 12” and think back to when it was the top of the line…

    These are just my own observations, do please see the official Apple press release for details and check out the PowerBook on Apple’s website .

    Posted in: Apple

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