YouTube – I’m Steve Jobs – WWDC 07

Work is killing me, so posting has been very scarce. I thought this intro to the Apple WWDC was pretty funny though.


Picture-in-Picture: Would You Use It? – Chris Lanier’s Blog

My answer would be, “Hell, yeah!”. I think this should be an included feature with enough “smarts” to deal with all the conflicts that Chris mentions. I’m sure there are people who only have a Media Center PC in a single room with no extenders, and would love this feature. If you don’t like it, don’t care to use it, or don’t want people consuming your limited number of tuners, then there should be a “disable” feature where no one can use it.

This brings up another point. Media Center should have the ability to allow people to add as many tuners as their system can handle. Other software out there allows this (Beyond TV, Sage TV, etc), and they have the conflict management system to handle it. With this feature it would make running out of tuners much less likely. I have a Beyond TV server with 9 tuners (4 analog, 3 over-the-air, 2 digital QAM), and have no issues being able to record several programs at once while serving up live TV. I understand if you want to limit them to ensure things run as smooth as possible, but OEM manufacturers should be given enough instructions about what configurations can handle what. If you’re a do-it-yourself kind of person, then you should be willing to deal with the headaches that come with that.


Macworld: News: Copying HD DVD and Blu-ray discs may become legal

Now here’s some good news. All I have to say is, “It’s about damn time!”.

Under a licensing agreement in its final stages, consumers may get the right to make several legal copies of HD DVD and Blu-ray Disc movies they’ve purchased, a concession by the movie industry that may quell criticism that DRM (digital rights management) technologies are too restrictive.

The agreement, if supported by movie studios and film companies, could allow a consumer to make a backup copy in case their original disc is damaged and another copy for their home media server, said Michael Ayers, a representative of an industry group that licenses the AACS (Advanced Access Content System) copy-prevention system.

AACS is used on HD DVD and Blu-ray discs, the new high-definition DVD formats, to prevent unauthorized copying of the discs.


SlySoft Forum – How to turn off subtitles or remove them?

I just started using PowerDVD Ultra to playback my HD-DVDs, and I’ve noticed that “Superman Returns” doesn’t have a menu (at least I cannot access it with PowerDVD nor the Xbox 360 player). PowerDVD Ultra turns on subtitles and there is not way to turn them off other than via the DVD menu. It only has an option to cycle though the various subtitle languages. Hopefully Cyberlink will fix this soon. Either that or if AnyDVD HD could provide an option to rip the movie without subtitles. In the meantime for disks like this (I’ve only noticed “Superman Returns” does this) you can simply remove the subtitle references in the .xpl file of the disk’s ADV_OBJ folder:

 You need to open the ADV_OBJ folder, find the XPL file, open it with wordpad , find any thing that looks like this:

<SubtitleTrack track=”1″ langcode=”en:01″ description=”English SDH”/>
<SubtitleTrack track=”2″ langcode=”es:01″/>
<SubtitleTrack track=”3″ langcode=”fr:01″/>
<SubtitleTrack track=”4″ langcode=”es:01″ selectable=”true” />
<SubtitleTrack track=”5″ langcode=”fr:01″ selectable=”true” />

and just delete it, and save. there should at least 3 areas that look like the above. I also suggest you make a back up of the original XPL file just in case something gets deleted that was not supposed to.

This worked for me, and I can enjoy “Superman Returns” on my HTPC, using PowerDVD Ultra without those annoying subtitles.


 Rip DVD in Beyond Media

Adding a “Rip DVD” menu item to Beyond Media – OTA HD DVR

I remember reading this awhile ago, but forgot to mention it here. This is great “how-to” to include a “Rip DVD” option in your Beyond Media menu. With it you can add a DVD movie to DVD Library in a few easy steps from the comfort of your couch.


BrentEvans: Video Walkthrough of Placeshifting Beyond TV

Brent Evans has a nice write-up and screencast of how to stream video from a PC, running Beyond TV. It cannot stream Live TV yet, but it’s still a nice and very welcome feature for Beyond TV users.


Help Build a Media Center Components Database – Chris Lanier’s Blog

I always thought sites like this would be very helpful to people looking to build a successful Home Theater PC (HTPC) as long as the site stays current. The biggest issue I see is maintaining a central database of components (hardware, software, drivers, versions, etc) from all different manufacturers. I don’t think you’d want to be dependent on free-form user input since that easily leads to duplication and unnecessary bloat.

It would be nice to see a more general site than ones dedicated to specific software. The site Chris Lanier mentions is specific to Windows Media Center, and this one is more focused on Linux-based solutions. Anyone interested? Sounds like a fun pet project. I’d be willing to help out, but really believe there is a need to find a source, or multiple sources, to populate the database of components.