Oct 22 2014

HBO Go Subscription overpriced for streaming media customers?

13.01.31 HBO Go HBO Go Subscription overpriced for streaming media customers?

Last week, HBO announced that they were going to allow customers next year to have HBO Go without having a cable subscription. This is big news for people who want to cut the cord with their cable subscription. More customers are finding that they can get exactly what they want, entertainment wise with streaming content from the Internet, versus having a full-blown cable subscription.

This is a good move for HBO. HBO has one of the most popular TV shows, Game of Thrones, but it’s only available to HBO subscribers through their cable subscriptions. HBO was clearly alienating a whole group of potential customers by not offering streaming service directly to people who use devices like Roku.

I like the fact that more companies like HBO are starting to recognize that there’s a huge market for customers who don’t want a cable subscription, but would like to get entertainment from the media providers directly. But what’s troubling is that early rumors [unconfirmed] are HBO Go is going to cost roughly $15-20 a month.

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Oct 20 2014

Peyton Manning chose printouts over Microsoft Surface

119 Peyton Manning chose printouts over Microsoft Surface

I think Peyton Manning doesn’t like Microsoft Surface. Last night, I was watching Sunday Night Football [Broncos versus 49ers] and while Peyton Manning was on his way to breaking the all-time record for quarterback touchdowns [509], I just happened to notice that Peyton was not using Microsoft Surface on the sidelines to examine the other teams plays.

Since the NFL season started, Microsoft hasn’t been a big supporter of the league this year. All the commentators, sports analysts and not to mention all the Microsoft Surface billboards and advertisements during the NFL games. it’s pretty obvious that Microsoft is pushing its Surface tablet.

But what struck me funny was that Peyton Manning was not using the Microsoft Surface tablet, he was using the old printouts of player positions.

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Oct 15 2014

Streaming TV: Charging Per Episode – Nope.

503 Streaming TV: Charging Per Episode   Nope.

Being able to stream TV shows from Netflix and Hulu for one flat fee is what makes those services great.

The other day I was browsing with my Roku, and I was curious about what TV shows I could find. I finally found a TV show that I wanted to watch, but unfortunately, the TV shows were not on Netflix or Hulu; they were found under services like MGO, Amazon and Vudu. So while I could find the TV shows, these other services want me to pay $1.99 or $2.99 for HD, per episode. The idea of paying almost 3 dollars to watch a single episode [22 minutes] of a TV show is ridiculous to me.

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Oct 10 2014

AutoHotKey: Tracking Emails Simple

 

886 AutoHotKey: Tracking Emails SimpleWhen you’re working on various projects, tracking emails in Microsoft Outlook or Thunderbird, various subjects can be daunting. I think everyone’s aware that email has some obvious limitations on tracking, but what’s interesting is that there’s not been any advancements with being able to follow email threads were conversations with email in a long time.

Unfortunately, when you send an email the only thing that you can track an email by is the subject line. And unfortunately, if someone changes the subject line of the email somewhere down the road, your email program will lose the ability to track down the entire email conversation.

I haven’t seen any applications that focus on reconstructing or tracking email conversations. It only seems to work if the subject line remains the same across the whole conversation. But there’s another way, a simple/easy way to track your email conversations even if the subject line changes. The solution is AutoHotKey.

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Oct 06 2014

Screencasting competitors: Roku, Matchstick and Chromecast

209 Screencasting competitors: Roku, Matchstick and Chromecast

Roku, Matchstick and Chromecast have made this past week very interesting for screencasting. Roku announced that Roku 3 and the Roku stick users will be able to mirror broadcasts from your Windows and android phones [oddly leaving out Apple] to your living room TV, but bigger than that was the surprise kick starter of Matchstick.

With more and more people getting their entertainment and media from the Internet, people don’t want to be tied into just being able to get that information simply from your phone or tablet, they want to be able to put it on their large TV screens. Chromecast was first to get into screencasting or screen mirroring with a dongle.

But this past week has shown that much greater number of customers are very interested in getting their content onto their living room TV. The Kickstarter project for Matchstick got founded in one day; even exceeding what they needed. And to go so far as be sold out on several of their initial offerings.

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Oct 03 2014

Windows 10: Installing with VirtualBox

Windows10 logo thumb Windows 10: Installing with VirtualBox

The evaluation version of Windows 10 has been released by Microsoft for savvy PC users try out. If you’re one of the many users who hated Windows 8, you may want to check out the evaluation version to see what’s in store going forward. It is rather nice to mention that Microsoft has wonderfully agreed to upgrade all Windows 8 users to Windows 10 without charge. I guess that’s the price for being a guinea pig.

Some users may be uncomfortable with installing Windows 10 on their PCs on a separate partition, so I have decided to document the installation process Windows 10 with VirtualBox. VirtualBox is a virtual machine environment that allows you to install Windows 10 in a sandbox environment and doesn’t require you to repartition your hard drive and there’s no risk to your system if something goes wrong.

The two main things that you’re going to need are:

  • a copy of VirtualBox
  • and the ISO evaluation version of Windows 10

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Oct 03 2014

Review: WonderFox DVD Video Converter

800 Review: WonderFox DVD Video Converter

WonderFox DVD Video Converter is a software package that I got from a ” give away ” website for free. It has the ability to rip DVDs and convert various different audio and video formats.  Sometimes there’s points where you want to work with media and you want to create a specific type of presentation, but the thing that people run into the most often is the complexities of dealing with different video and audio formats. The quickest way to turn off someone’s inspiration for doing any kind of media presentation is to confuse them with jargon and technical points that they don’t understand.

Unfortunately, we still live in a transitional phase where device manufacturers and software companies are still thinking of new audio and video formats to work with because they think their format is better than everyone else’s; and there’s always going to be a new standard coming out, but everyone should support a “standard” on every device so that everyone can work or even playing field.

But when that’s not the case, you need software that can deal with those various different audio and video formats  and convert them into something you can work with,  or something that your audio/video software can handle natively. This is where WonderFox DVD video converter comes in very handy. It keeps your motivation for your project going and removes the headaches of having to deal with technical roadblocks.

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Oct 01 2014

What’s the difference between a laptop and a tablet?

surfacemac Whats the difference between a laptop and a tablet?

Right now, Microsoft has a commercial it’s airing where it compares Microsoft Surface 3 to Apple’s MacBook Air. The commercial, to me, is very interesting because Microsoft wants to make the comparison between Microsoft Surface and basically a standard laptop. This begs the question, so what’s the difference between a laptop and a tablet?

The commercial itself basically gives away the specifications between the two devices. But seriously, the main difference between the two devices is that the Microsoft Surface tablet has a detachable keyboard and you can touch the screen. So essentially, if the MacBook Air was to add the capability of touchscreen, there basically wouldn’t be any difference.

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Sep 22 2014

Apple’s iPhone 6 new features are not NEW

423 Apples iPhone 6 new features are not NEW

The other day, I was having a discussion with a good friend of mine about the release of the iPhone 6. This discussion wasn’t necessarily about the standard version or the plus version, it was a discussion basically as to why people get so excited about the release of the iPhone in general. The driving factor behind the iPhone is the fact that iPhone customers don’t have any choice. There’s no alternate device with an Apple logo that has a different hardware feature set.

I’m not pointing out that the iPhone’s hardware specifications are untouchable; I’m simply saying that android users enjoy a much more robust choice of device than an Apple iPhone user.

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Sep 20 2014

Eweat EW902 Android TV Specs Are Impressive

561 Eweat EW902 Android TV Specs Are Impressive

The pending release of Android TV, really got me thinking about what options were already out there on the market. If you go to eBay right now and type in Android TV, there’s lots of options for dual core and quad core android devices that provide streaming media. Some of these devices are specifically driven towards certain solutions, other android devices are not refined towards streaming content and they lack a user-friendly interface.

Depending upon your level of tolerance and what you’re looking for with a streaming media device, you may find solutions on several different levels; ranging from faster processors, USB expansion, WebCams, storage expansion, etc. But options are definitely out there.

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