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Old 03-21-2008, 11:14 PM   #1231
Eccles
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Surrealone View Post
WOW I came here to get info on SDV.
Try the first 20 pages; the last 20 have devolved into a dicksizing contest.
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Old 03-22-2008, 02:46 AM   #1232
lrhorer
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Catv

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Originally Posted by Firekite View Post
Regardless, one isn't stuck if one's only buried up to one's ankles.
True. I would say it's beyond the ankles, but not beyond their hips, yet. The thing is, it gets a bit deeper every day, and since there is no solution at this time, and the previous solution took nearly 20 years, what does that say about the situation? Let's try this on for size. Exactly what do you suggest they do? You are the one who is so convinced there is a simple solution. 'No more hand waving. Give me dollars and cents, and explain why it's a good idea for the CATV companies. The fact you like it is irrelevant. Why should they like it?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Firekite View Post
There are options in the middle, not the least of which is what some people call "migration."
That's easy to say when one hasn't a clue of what one is speaking. Obviously, you are a qualified engineer with 25 years in the industry, while I am a complete novice, so lay out the plan for me. How many QAMs will they convert per day, and how many of their customers will be left without how many channels for how long until they are done? How much does each new receiver cost, and what will they do with the 800,000 converters which are useless when they are done? What about the $6 or $7 million dollars worth of QAM modulators? Finally, and most importantly, from whom will they buy this magical new system. Scientific Atlanta doesn't sell it. Jerrold doesn't sell it. Magnavox doesn't sell it. C-Cor doesn't sell it. RMS doesn't sell it. Motorola doesn't sell it. Pace doesn't sell it. Blonder Tongue doesn't sell it. Clearly you know some CATV equipment manufacturer of which I am unaware who can easily deliver nearly a million boxes to San Antonio alone. Who is it?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Firekite View Post
Yes, they technically came up with a standard, but they did so without taking into account consumers or CE manufacturers.
Just as you are suggesting a course of action which takes only your desires into account. They did a vastly better job than you are doing at making allowances for the other parties in the mix.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Firekite View Post
Even you admit that it was a thoroughly self-serving standard that is politically or economically unacceptable to everyone else.
This is why I insist upon literal interpretations of your messages. I said nothing of the sort. You accuse me of hyperbole, yet when I make a statement such as "They want separable security", you pretend to quote in rebuttal, "who allegedly wants so desperately". I say, "The fact the latter two are self-serving and have sections in them politically or economically unacceptable to other parties", and you change it to "a thoroughly self-serving standard that is politically or economically unacceptable to everyone else." The standards are not "thoroughly" self serving and they are not unacceptable to "everyone" else.

There are two sections of OCAP which are unacceptable to people like me. Most people probably don't care, but even if they do, it represents a deal impediment which could very easily be modified. CableLabs has no reason to do so, however. I want to be able to say, "No" to downloading software into my equipment should I so decide, but the spec doesn't require the CATV company give me the choice. They can give me a choice if they want and would still be perfectly within the spec, but they are not required to give it to me. People who check the "get updates from Microsoft automatically" probably don't care about this. They also probably make up the bulk of the consumer base. I'd be happy if not.

I also want to be able to obtain 3rd party software and load it myself onto the TiVo, but the spec would allow them to refuse to provide service to me if I did so, which consequently pretty much eliminates the likelihood any such software would ever be developed.

There are also a couple of small sections in the hardware spec that 3rd party manufacturers don't like much, but a little leaning from the FCC or even consumers and that could easily have gone away, as well. If the FCC had been doing their job, this all would have evaporated 15 years ago.

None of it was insurmountable, or in fact is even yet insurmountable.

Note there are very real security and support issues for the CATV company surrounding the problematic sections of the specs, and they would have been foolish in the extreme to blithely open their network up to malicious or inadvertent attack from 3rd party software and hardware. Failure to take proper precautions in those areas could easily result not only in serious impacts to their ability to provide service, but also severe threats to their customers. What would you say if because of delinquent OCAP specifications, someone was able to hack into the CATV system and completely erease the hard drive on your TiVo, making it worthless? Worse, what would you say if they were able to hack into your home network and steal your identity? There are very good reasons why those specifications were written. It's just when they solved the problem the provisions allow them to be more restrictive in their administration of the network than is necessary or should be, and nothing would prevent them from going to that length.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Firekite View Post
By the way, that necessarily makes them "unworkable." They didn't come up with a real, workable open standard that worked for everyone
It is workable from every standpoint. That someone objects to it is inevitable. That it should have been ratified, hopefully in a modestly modified form, but wasn't is far from entirely their fault. The simple fact is there is no way the equipment manufacturers will even accept any unified standard unless they are forced to do so. Cable does not have that authority.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Firekite View Post
After all that, even after all your admissions regarding the things entirely within their control that they did wrong, you're insisting that...they did them right and that they were also out of their control? That doesn't make sense.
What the FCC does is not within their control. What the CATV equipment manufacturers do is not within their control, except in the very most indirect and strictly limited fashion. What the CE manufacturers do is not within their control. Cable providers collectively most assuredly must take the blame for some of the failures in the negotiations for a spec for separable security, but then so must the other parties. By the way, the other parties were just as free to come up with a published spec for separable security. Mostly they did not, and the few who did came up with impractical or unworkable solutions. Yet you insist the CATV company is entirely to blame because they didn't unilaterally come up with the solution? Why didn't the 3rd party manufacturers come up with the solution? They are the ones who have to make the equipment for consumers. Why didn't the CATV equipment manufacturers com up with a unified solution? They came up with three equally workable proprietary ones. All they had to do was agree on producing one, rather than three. How is that somehow not malfeasant, but CableLabs's effort, which was equally workable but failed to offer any opportunity to corner the CATV equipment market, was? Unless the government forces them to, there is no way the CATV equipment manufacturers would ever accept an open standard. How is that cable's fault?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Firekite View Post
I'll just give you the benefit of the doubt that your arbitrary number is the optimal number
Do you know what arbitrary means? There is no "optimal" number, and the number has nothing to do with SDV. The MPEG2 HD streams broadcast by the networks require approximately 5.5 times the bandwidth of an SD MPEG stream. I used the number 22 because it is evenly divisible by both 5.5 and 2, and results in an integral number of slices allocated to both SD and HD streams. Use whatever number you want.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Firekite View Post
and point out that I really don't see how this makes delivery of additional HD content impossible without SDV.
...Because you apparently haven't a clue what SDV is or how it works.

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Originally Posted by Firekite View Post
It especially wilts when held up to the fact that there are only a (relative) handful of markets using SDV in the first place, and somehow the rest of the markets are delivering the content without SDV.
No, they aren't. Name one linear market anywhere with a 750MHz system, 77 analog channels, 51 HD channels, and 300 plus SD channels. There isn't one. Add VOD and Video Rewind, and the number of unique streams soars to several thousand.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Firekite View Post
My problem isn't strictly that SDV exists. My problem is two-fold: 1) that no open, workable industry standard was developed to allow 3rd parties to make use of this allegedly panacean solution that is the only possible solution in existence
Not just one, but no fewer than 3 of them exist. You're saying no standard exists over and over doesn't make it so. Get somone with the clout to force all the CATV equipment manufacturers to settle on a single one, and Bob's your uncle. Hmm, I wonder who has that clout? TWC? Motorola knows TWC isn't going to buy their hardware, so why should they be the ones to cave? Cox? They've given Scientific Atlanta the middle finger, so why should SA abandon their standard just because Cox says so?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Firekite View Post
2) their choices regarding which channels are moved to SDV. There are only 40 HD channels available today, and that includes each and every HD channel regardless of their SDV status, including the fairly useless ones and the premium-only channels you have to explicitly pay for individually like Cinemax and Starz. I have no problem with VOD, IPPV, or other such specialty services being on SDV.
Leaving the fact you can't count aside, you simply have no idea about what you are speaking. VOD and Video Rewind up the number of "channels" in use manyfold. With VOD and Video Rewind, there may easily be 200 or 300 streams carrying Thursday night's episode of ER, each one shifted by a few seconds or minutes.

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Originally Posted by Firekite View Post
And you continue to insist on false dichotomies wallowing in hyperbole, that the only option is to either have things arranged exactly as-is or eliminate SDV altogether along with VOD and IPPV. Why do you do this?
Because I'm stupid and haven't a clue about what I am speaking. Because I am not an engineer. Because I have no idea what digital video is or how it works. Because I've never had to purchase CATV equipment and don't realize that it's virtually free. Because I don't know how SDV works or what its advantages over classical transmission systems are. Yeah, that must be it.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Firekite View Post
To use your own numbers and assertions and assuming they're correct, 50 HD channels and 210 SD channels all without SDV should be enough to please nearly every single customer they have.
Then why is DirecTV crowing about having 150 HD channels online by the end of this year? At the rate TWC is going, they'll have more than 75. Why should other subscribers give up 20 or 30 HD channels just so you can get them as well? Having you disconnect altogether makes much more sense.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Firekite View Post
Everything else (music channels, VOD, IPPV, truly obscure channels) can ride the SDV wave as much as they'd like. Personally, I'd like to see a much heavier emphasis on HD than SD, and I truly doubt I'm the lone exception on my local node.
1. Every single video channel carried by TWC San Antonio has Video Rewind available. This automatically allocates several thousand channels for SDV use. Obviously you are volunteering to take all calls from customers who are irate because they've lost Video Rewind.

2. By a "much heavier emphasis on HD", I presume you mean more HD channels? Any time the number of channels grows, by inevitable consequence the average market share of each channel must drop. The CATV system enjoys significant monetary benefits any time a channel whose penetration does not equal 100% on a node by node basis is placed onto SDV. I doubt that more than 5 or 6 of the HD channels have a 100% penetration on a node by node basis, and it's very unlikely any new ones will even come close. If half the city had HD sets, it would be a different matter, but they don't.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Firekite View Post
pointed out by MichaelK, demand for HD is not some fringe thing.
Yet again the kettle speaks. While "fringe" channels are most certainly excellent grist for the SDV mill, the CATV provider can enjoy significant benefits from moving channels with market shares in excess of 5% to SDV. By the statements in the article, less than 50% of viewers currently have HD, so on average that means if a channel enjoys a 10% market share, the HD version of it only enjoys a 5% market share. The fact HD sets tend to be clumped into specifc areas of town makes the market share on a node by node basis even smaller. If there are 50 channels broadcast in both SD and HD, then the vast majority of those channels must have less than a 2% market share, and the HD versions of those must have less than 1%. The CATV engineering staff would have to be idiots not to put the majority of those channels on SDV. The fact you don't like it is irrelevant.

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Originally Posted by Firekite View Post
As many as it takes until you realize you're wrong. The situation is that no 3rd party CableCARD device, whether my TV or TiVo or anything else, can receive SDV channels. One day this may be remedied, but no such remedy exists today.
(Emphasis added by me.) No, actualy, it looks like I may have gotten through a little bit. It is the 3rd party devices, not the CableCards, which are incompatible with SDV. Shall I say it again? No? I don't know if you think your mouth will burst into flames if you say it, or something, but it is the 3rd party devices that don't work with SDV, not the CableCards. 'Stick it into an SDV compatible device, and the CableCard works famously with SDV. Yet until now you continually insisted CableCards don't work with SDV. The statement is simply and completely false no matter how one slices it.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Firekite View Post
The introduction of SDV broke cable systems' compatibility with unidirectional hosts.
SDV and other 2-way protocols long predate the existence of the first 3rd party unidirectional CableCard host. TiVo and everyone else knew fully well the S3 wouldn't be compatible with systems already online and those soon to come before the first schematic of an S3 went on a TiVo engineer's desk. That's not to say it's TiVo's fault, either. They waited to deploy the S3 as long as they could and then some. If anything, TiVo breaks SDV, not the other way around, although that isn't accurate either. Whether you like it or not and whether you understand it or not, the situation is far more complex than pedestrian platitudes can quantify.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Firekite View Post
SDV is incompatible with unidirectional hosts, meaning any and all CableCARD devices in San Antonio that aren't the exclusive proprietary systems owned and leased to customers by TWC. No semantics game you try to play can change that fact.
I wouldn't dream of playing with that statement, because it is the first nearly fully accurate one you have made in this entire dialogue. You should have said "CableCard hosts, not CableCard devices, because the CableCards themselves are devices and are not proprietary, but even I'll allow that's a very tiny nit.

OK, so I'm baiting you, right? Wrong. I want you (and everyone else) to quit screaming about CableCards, quit screaming about SDV, quit screeaming about their local CATV company and start screaming at the FCC to get off their arses and enact a unified standard for bidirectional hosts. Demanding that TWC or anyone else get rid of SDV accomplishes nothing good but does do a great deal of damage. The problem is the hosts. Get it? Fix the hosts and we're all good. Get it?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Firekite View Post
It is my fervent hope that since my area has now moved to SDV, a workable two-way, SDV-capable solution such as the mythical USB dongle
And you criticize the CATV companies for being shortsighted? First of all, from a technical and engineering standpoint the USB dongle is the second worst of the practical methods of delivering SDV to an S3 TiVo. More importantly, however, the fact is the existence of a dongle only entrenches the proprietary protocols even deeper. If the CATV companies are collectively loathe to abandon their respectively chosen technology now, how much more so are they likely to be so when they've bought several million dollars worth of dongles on top of their current expenditures?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Firekite View Post
pay little to nothing (after rebates) for an SD-only Series2 or pay vastly more for a Series3 (perhaps with the additional option of still significantly more for a TiVo HD). If they want HD, they have no choice in the matter.
I have news for you. The TiVo HD is typically $100 - $150 cheaper than the S3. What's more, there are other OTA HD DVR options, just no other CabeCard options. Certainly it's much cheaper all the way around to go with just analog basic SD cable and OTA HD.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Firekite View Post
I can't imagine that they wouldn't be hooking it up to an HDTV, that they're going to be buying it for an old SD unit. Like I said, you may be an exception, but perhaps taking some of your own advice regarding assuming you are the typical case is a good idea, here.
Once again, I never said that. I'll allow I wasn't specific, but I knew perfectly good and well when I purchased my first S3 in September 2006, my second one in June 2007, and my TiVo HD in December 2007 that they were not directly compatible with SDV,and that SDV would be widely deployed within 1 or 2 years. It was no secret.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Firekite View Post
I'm trying desperately not to be. It's hard, however, when you say things like, "Telling their specific vendor to get lost means collectively chucking $10 billion and spending $10 billion for some other proprietary system."
That is exactly the situation. The CATV industry has spent over $10 billion in the last several years on proprietary technology. Abandoning those technologies means chucking $10 billion in investments. Since there is no ratified unified open standard in existence, their only choice would be to purchase proprietary systems. If a standard does get ratified, then those who don't have the proprietary standard on hand will have to chuck their gear (or retrofit it). The lucky ones who have purchased the system which does get ratified won't have to do anything.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Firekite View Post
Yet more of your deliberately misleading if technically correct statements: every user in the city is NOT served by a single QAM.
I didn't say they were. I said every channel on that QAM becomes unusable to every subscriber served by that QAM.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Firekite View Post
Additionally, I'm fairly certain your TiVo boxes will still somehow magically not become unusuable.
The TiVo isn't useable for SDV services right now, or hadn't you noticed?

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Originally Posted by Firekite View Post
The latter point means your hyperbole is incorrect, and the former means that there's migration is not only possible but very likely preferable.
It means nothing of the sort. What it does mean is that some 60 or 70% of the channels would go dark, and IPPV, VOD, and Video Rewind would quit working altogether.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Firekite View Post
By the way, 200 times $85,000 equals $17,000,000, not $10,000,000,000.
Boy, I sure am stupid aren't I? I guess I just can't count. $17M is the amount TWC spent on QAMs. Add the cost of buildings, HVAC systems, generators, UPS systems, fire supression systems, fiber installation, fiber nodes, 10G transport systems, video server farms and close to 800,000 STBs / DVRs, and the number for TWC San Antonio was well over $50,000,000. The $10B number is what has been spent by the entire CATV industry.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Firekite View Post
And even then your argument is based on moving from one proprietary system to another rather than to an open system.
Since there is no open system to which to move, upon what else should I have based my argument? I live in the real world, not fantasyland.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Firekite View Post
And yet your pro-CATV arguments still can't manage to keep them from looking terrifically stupid.
Is that why their revenues of more than $3,000,000 a month have plummeted to nothing? Oh, wait...

Unethical they are. Dishonest they are. Unscrupulous they are. Overpriced they are. Stupid? 'Not so much.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Firekite View Post
I AM ONE OF THOSE THREE HUNDRED THOUSAND TWC CUSTOMERS.
If they are so stupid, and make you so angry, why are you a customer?

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Originally Posted by Firekite View Post
BECAUSE TWC MAKES IT IMPOSSIBLE TO BE BOTH WITHOUT GIVING UP A SIGNIFICANT AMOUNT OF THE SERVICE YOU PAY FOR.
So disconnect service. Then you won't be paying them a cent.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Firekite View Post
Your entirely random number of 5,000 based on pure and utter out-of-the-air speculation is not only very likely incorrect, but it's also meaningless in the context of your argument.
No, you see I do actually know how to count. Take the number of S3 class units sold to date. Multiply by the total number of CATV subscriobers in San Antonio. Divide by the total number of CATV subscribers in the nation. Add in a fudge factor just to make sure one isn't underestimating the number of TiVos in the city.

The remainder of your rant is so abusive and utterly ridiculous I won't even bother with it except for this:

Quote:
Originally Posted by Firekite View Post
You don't? Really? Not even with your TiVo? I wasn't even aware you could avoid it.
'Haven't bothered to look at one for anything other than testing purposes for nearly 8 years. That you are unaware of it somehow fails to surprise me.
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Old 03-22-2008, 05:36 AM   #1233
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Of course both of our opinions on this matter are completely unsupported, so I don't suppose it really matters, but I think you're wrong on this.
I cannot believe that you're focusing on the trivial parts of my message and ignoring the main points, so I'll reply based on the assumption that you're objecting to the main points: Do you really want me to prove that America has become progressively pro-business since Ronald Reagan took office? Do you really need someone to contrast the commerce-related decisions regulatory authorities like the SEC and judicial authorities like the Supreme Court, pre-1980 versus post-1980? It seems to me that that's just a sleazy debating tactic, insisting on evidence of facts that all reasonable folks know and accept to be true, just to waste someone's time. With respect, if you really are unaware of this, do your own research.

And that's the only part of my statement that matters. Face it folks: The business of America is business. Get used to it. And get over it.
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Old 03-22-2008, 05:39 AM   #1234
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What are you talking about?
Which part didn't you understand?

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With CableCARDS, the only thing you get are channels.
Okay. Now please explain what this has to do with the comments you were replying to. Many CE manufacturers offered CableCard equipped televisions and were not adequately rewarded by consumers for doing so.
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Old 03-22-2008, 03:41 PM   #1235
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I cannot believe that you're focusing on the trivial parts of my message and ignoring the main points
I can't believe that you consider trivial elements of your post to be the main points. The Devil is in the details, by the way. Anything is possible if one needn't bother with the details.
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Originally Posted by bicker View Post
Do you really want me to prove that America has become progressively pro-business since Ronald Reagan took office?
No, because it's irrelevant. I'll stipulate to it, if you like. (Although I submit it may have been as much the comments by the Japanese and widespread comparisons to them which had as much to do with it as who was falling asleep at meetings in the White House.)

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Do you really need someone to contrast the commerce-related decisions regulatory authorities like the SEC and judicial authorities like the Supreme Court, pre-1980 versus post-1980?
Statements about the state of the regulatory environment - no matter how accurate - don't prove that a document written by an industry which negatively impacts the industry including those who wrote the document was deliberately written in that fashion. It also doesn't prove the regulatory authority (the FCC and Congress) were smart enough to figure out exactly how their actions would impact business. Indeed, having stipulated the environment is pro business, and taking into account the situation is bad for the majority of the businesses and the huge majority of the revenue involved, exactly how do you reach the conclusion it was deliberate? With the exception of the CATV equipment manufacturers, the industry would have won big time if the FCC had ratified OpenCable 2.0 several years ago.

You are claiming the results of the current situation prove the intent of the participants at the outset, but in so doing you are insisting the actions of the participants produced exactly the intended results, and that is a very difficult thing to accomplish even in a simple situation. This is far from a simple situation, and I submit almost every business interest involved wishes it would just go away.

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Originally Posted by bicker View Post
It seems to me that that's just a sleazy debating tactic, insisting on evidence
Oh, horrors. Someone has actually asked you to back up an opinion with supporting evidence? Oh, yeah, that's sleazy, all right.

Actually, I would be happy with specific statements of premise connected by valid logical elements. "America is pro-business so the failure must have been intentional" doesn't even come close to qualifying.

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Originally Posted by bicker View Post
of facts that all reasonable folks know and accept to be true
Facts all reasonable folks know and accept to be true rarely are in fact true.
Ask any moderately sophisticated question concerning history, philosophy, religion, law, business, math, or science, and you'll get a wrong answer from upwards of 90% of the respondents.

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Originally Posted by bicker View Post
just to waste someone's time.
That has never been my intent. I may (perhaps foolishly) waste my own time if I so choose, but deliberately wasting anyone else's would be highly unethical.

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Originally Posted by bicker View Post
With respect, if you really are unaware of this, do your own research.
I've never felt you were failing to offer the proper respect, but kudos for being polite. Of course I have done my own research and will continue to do so. For some reason you seem to think doing so will cause me to agree with your conclusions. It's possible, but not likely. After all, I agree with your facts. It's your conclusions which are flawed.

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Originally Posted by bicker View Post
And that's the only part of my statement that matters.
No, it isn't. Logic and supporting statements - both lacking here - are the important part.

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Face it folks: The business of America is business. Get used to it. And get over it.
Now that's just silly. Clearly by your own statements things do change, and although you didn't specifically state this, the implication would seem to be we made the change to a pro-business environment ourselves. If we changed it once, we can change it again. No one should get used to it or get over it. It is not only our right but our obligate duty to try to change things we feel are wrong. That said, many of us feel some aspects of the situation don't need changing, so it is also our right to support the status quo.

All of that is beside the point, however. When two roughly equivalent business interests are at odds with each other, one cannot point to a generalized pro-business regulatory environment to explain why one is favored over the other by a regulatory situation, and one certainly cannot do so when both are damaged by the situation. In this case we have dozens of business interests and at least 4 major industries involved in the mix, and only the smallest one is benefiting at all. Certainly some aspects of the regulatory environment played a significant role, perhaps even a deciding role in producing the current situation, but leaping to the conclusion the results were deliberate rather than unintentional crosses an invalid logical gap.

To bring this back to my original point, it's entirely possible the intent behind this whole mess was to produce this very mess. I cannot definitively prove otherwise, but it is unlikely in my estimation. Entropy and chaos - not to mention stupidity - just play too big a role in history for any group to have that accurate an influence over a long period of time. In addition, the situation is just far too detrimental to the businesses for it to have been the expected result of a pro-business regulatory environment. For some reason you think it is likely, but you probably won't be able to prove it definitively, either.
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Old 03-22-2008, 05:29 PM   #1236
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A better solution

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Originally Posted by Firekite View Post
You're also willing to go so far into hyperboleland that you're insisting that any solution for stranded CableCARD customers
Quote:
Originally Posted by Firekite View Post
It especially wilts when held up to the fact that there are only a (relative) handful of markets using SDV in the first place, and somehow the rest of the markets are delivering the content without SDV.
As I already mentioned, it's not the only solution. Comcast has a perfectly wonderful one. [/sarcasm]

See this link for details. I presume you think this would be a much better solution?
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Old 03-22-2008, 05:42 PM   #1237
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Originally Posted by lrhorer View Post
As I already mentioned, it's not the only solution. Comcast has a perfectly wonderful one. [/sarcasm]

See this link for details. I presume you think this would be a much better solution?
Time-Warner is already putting 3 HD channels per QAM, and they are the biggest deployers of SDV.

Low quality and Tivo incompatibility combined!

TTYL
David

Last edited by DaveDFW : 03-22-2008 at 06:01 PM.
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Old 03-22-2008, 06:32 PM   #1238
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Originally Posted by DaveDFW View Post
Time-Warner is already putting 3 HD channels per QAM, and they are the biggest deployers of SDV.

Low quality and Tivo incompatibility combined!

TTYL
David
I don't know where you heard this, but in my area that is an outright falsehood.
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Old 03-22-2008, 07:10 PM   #1239
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I don't know where you heard this, but in my area that is an outright falsehood.
TWC North Texas is putting 3 HDs per qam, that's a fact.

And we're getting SDV channels this week. Nothing I said was incorrect.

I won't know what the SDV channels' bitrates will be until they show up on Thursday or so. I doubt they'll be as compressed as the HD channels I already receive.

Below are the qam-to-hd channel mapping we have currently:

Channel 106 687 Mhz
106-1 cinemax hd
106-2 starz hd
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Old 03-23-2008, 12:34 AM   #1240
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Not combined

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TWC North Texas is putting 3 HDs per qam, that's a fact.

And we're getting SDV channels this week. Nothing I said was incorrect.
Well, you said they were combined, which isn't strictly correct. It sounds to me like the reduction in bitrate on linear channels was a stop-gap measure to get more HD online until they get SDV up and running. Once SDV is fully implemented, there's no point in limiting the quality of HD material that severely.

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I won't know what the SDV channels' bitrates will be until they show up on Thursday or so. I doubt they'll be as compressed as the HD channels I already receive.
I doubt it, as well. I suspect they'll drop to 2HD + 1SD, which is what many systems are deploying.

Warning: The following is strictly speculation on my part. I have no factual data to back it up. It is absolutely nothing more than a guess.

So no flames, please. Feel free to dissent.

I suspect what's going to happen in a large majority of CATV systems next year is the CATV provider will take the OTA digital conversion as an excuse to drop many, or in some cases perhaps even all analog channels from their offerings. Some CATV systems have 100 channels of analog video. Each of those is eating up space which could be occupied by 2 linear HD channels, 11 linear SD channels, or a dozen or more SDV HD channels. Of course, it's likely to tick off a large number of basic cable subscribers, but they can claim the FCC conversion mandate is forcing them into it. It isn't true, of course, but it isn't quite a bald-faced lie, either.

OTOH, keeping at least a significant number of analog channels might keep a large number of people who currently have no service of any sort from turning to satellite companies.

It's a fine line to walk, and I wonder which side of it, if either one, the majority of CATV providers will choose to walk.
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Old 03-23-2008, 02:34 AM   #1241
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I suspect what's going to happen in a large majority of CATV systems next year is the CATV provider will take the OTA digital conversion as an excuse to drop many, or in some cases perhaps even all analog channels from their offerings. Some CATV systems have 100 channels of analog video. Each of those is eating up space which could be occupied by 2 linear HD channels, 11 linear SD channels, or a dozen or more SDV HD channels. Of course, it's likely to tick off a large number of basic cable subscribers, but they can claim the FCC conversion mandate is forcing them into it. It isn't true, of course, but it isn't quite a bald-faced lie, either.
Well at least here in Austin, Time-Warner is using the demise of OTA analog as a carrot to lure new analog users onto cable. If they plan on dropping analog, they'll have to provide free digital STB's or face lawsuits for bait-and-switch marketing.
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Old 03-23-2008, 03:50 AM   #1242
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True enough

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Well at least here in Austin, Time-Warner is using the demise of OTA analog as a carrot to lure new analog users onto cable. If they plan on dropping analog, they'll have to provide free digital STB's or face lawsuits for bait-and-switch marketing.
Oh, I would think so, yes. It's not at all unusual for a vendor to offer discounts - in this case a free STB - to new customers, and the cost of the STB is a small price to pay to land a new customer.

Oh, wait, did you mean free STBs to customers who switched prior to the conversion based upon the marketing campaign? I'm not at all familiar with that section of the law, so you may be perfectly correct, but I'm sure there is some sort of acceptable time limit. Even if not, however, the cost of an STB is also small compared with the value of keeping an existing customer.
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Old 03-23-2008, 06:38 AM   #1243
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I can't believe that you consider trivial elements of your post to be the main points.
Luckily I get to dictate what parts of my posts are the main points and which ones are trivial. You don't get to dictate that to me.

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You are claiming the results of the current situation prove the intent of the participants at the outset
No, I'm claiming the results of the current situation prove the intent of the participants now. There is no significance, whatsoever, what intent was in the past. Only people who live in the past care about that.

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Oh, horrors. Someone has actually asked you to back up an opinion with supporting evidence?
Bull. Someone asked me to waste time, because they didn't like the perspective I'm projecting. There's a difference.

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Facts all reasonable folks know and accept to be true rarely are in fact true.
Bull, again. Truth is a reflection of consensus. If you actually believe there is such thing as absolute truth in matters of government regulation, then I cannot help you.

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Clearly by your own statements things do change, and although you didn't specifically state this, the implication would seem to be we made the change to a pro-business environment ourselves.
Absolutely. My point was that is the way things are, and the trends are still in that direction, so trying to assert that some past perspective should prevail over the will of the country at this time is ludicrous.

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To bring this back to my original point, it's entirely possible the intent behind this whole mess was to produce this very mess. I cannot definitively prove otherwise, but it is unlikely in my estimation.
You're entitled to your opinion.
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Old 03-23-2008, 10:17 AM   #1244
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I'm sorry, results simply do not prove intent. They do not disprove either. Results are simply that, results.

If you want to prove intent you need to come up with something more than results.
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Old 03-23-2008, 11:12 AM   #1245
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Well, you said they were combined, which isn't strictly correct. It sounds to me like the reduction in bitrate on linear channels was a stop-gap measure to get more HD online until they get SDV up and running. Once SDV is fully implemented, there's no point in limiting the quality of HD material that severely.


I doubt it, as well. I suspect they'll drop to 2HD + 1SD, which is what many systems are deploying.

Warning: The following is strictly speculation on my part. I have no factual data to back it up. It is absolutely nothing more than a guess.

So no flames, please. Feel free to dissent.

I suspect what's going to happen in a large majority of CATV systems next year is the CATV provider will take the OTA digital conversion as an excuse to drop many, or in some cases perhaps even all analog channels from their offerings. Some CATV systems have 100 channels of analog video. Each of those is eating up space which could be occupied by 2 linear HD channels, 11 linear SD channels, or a dozen or more SDV HD channels. Of course, it's likely to tick off a large number of basic cable subscribers, but they can claim the FCC conversion mandate is forcing them into it. It isn't true, of course, but it isn't quite a bald-faced lie, either.

OTOH, keeping at least a significant number of analog channels might keep a large number of people who currently have no service of any sort from turning to satellite companies.

It's a fine line to walk, and I wonder which side of it, if either one, the majority of CATV providers will choose to walk.
One of the problems with dropping the analog stations (at least with TW cable) is that they will implement the CCI byte 0x02 on ALL channels (including digital simulcast of local broadcast stations). Thus, effectively rendering TTG and MRV useless except for local broadcast HD channels. So in my case, I can TTG/MRV (well, if I had two TivoHD I could MRV anyway) 6 HD local stations and nothing else.
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Old 03-23-2008, 11:18 AM   #1246
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I'm sorry, results simply do not prove intent. They do not disprove either. Results are simply that, results.
Indeed... it was "the other guy" who brought up the whole issue of "proving" anything. In the end, for most things, it comes down to Occum's Razor: What is the most likely explanation. Expecting that they're doing things just for spite is not a likely explanation.
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Old 03-23-2008, 04:20 PM   #1247
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Trivial

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Luckily I get to dictate what parts of my posts are the main points and which ones are trivial. You don't get to dictate that to me.
I agree entirely with the second statement and disagree categorically with the first. Neither of us gets to dictate what is trivial or important. That is entirely beyond the capability of any person or group. An item is important if it has a significant impact on the question at hand, opinions to the effect completely notwithstanding. You are perfectly free to have any opinion you want of what is important of your posts, my posts, or anyone else's, just as I am free to gauge the importance of any sections of your posts or the post itself. I also intend no offense, but if you don't want people to judge the relative merits of your posts for themselves, then don't post. Take note that I hope you and others do decide to post quite freely. Just don't expect that we will think the same things are important that you do, or that you are free to dictate to anyone else what they should consider important about them.

<sigh> Frankly I thought my rebuttal made that point clear. I guess it didn't.

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No, I'm claiming the results of the current situation prove the intent of the participants now.
That's not what you said in the context of the discussion. I pointed out the situation was caused by loopholes in the spec written back in 1998, compounded by a lack of a response from the FCC at that time. You responded (emphasis mine):

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And I believe that was deliberate.
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There is no significance, whatsoever, what intent was in the past.
Then why did you bring it up? My points had little or nothing to do with the intent at any time. In the context of your statement, it is current intent which has no relevance. In the context of my statement, intent at any point in time is outside the scope of the argument.

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Only people who live in the past care about that.
I'll definitely allow that your posts here generally embrace that notion. Others, however, seek to place blame for actions in the past, which requires examining past intent. Nonetheless, the fact remains you were the one who brought up the question of past intent, not me.

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Bull. Someone asked me to waste time, because they didn't like the perspective I'm projecting. There's a difference.
Bull right back at you. You made statements of questionable validity and I asked you to back them up with facts. Without facts to back it up, no statement can be considered anything more than an unsupported opinion. There is nothing necessarily wrong with holding forth an unsupported opinion, but you claim your perspective is other than that, which means the onus of proof lies upon your shoulders. Don't whine if we tear your argument to shreds when you refuse to offer any such proof.

For the record, I neither like nor dislike your perspective and it wouldn't matter in the least if I did. The entire issue is that your perspective in no way provides support for the statement you made, which is to say the failure on the part of the FCC was deliberate, ostensibly because of some ulterior motive relating to the pro-business regulatory environment.

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Bull, again. Truth is a reflection of consensus.
That's utter nonsense. When better than 90% of the population of the Earth thought the Earth was flat, it didn't make it so. Most of the Earth's population probably still thinks the universe is only a fraction of its actual size or age.

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If you actually believe there is such thing as absolute truth in matters of government regulation, then I cannot help you.
To paraphrase Indiana Jones, "I am not seeking truth, I am seeking fact". If you think there is anything such as truth at all - absolute or otherwise - in government regulation then I cannot help you. The thing is, what you or I or the entire population of the Earth think is irrelevant. Either there was direct intent involved or there was not, and no amount of consensus will change the fact. The relevant facts proximate to the event are irretrievable, so any statement to either effect is nothing but opinion. We can both base that opinion on the results as we perceive them, but that in no way makes it anything but an opinion. I have no problem with freely admitting it, and I specifically did so from the outset so that no one would think I was stating anything other than unsupported opinion. For some reason you seem horrified that someone might realize you are holding forth on an unsupported opinion.

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Absolutely. My point was that is the way things are, and the trends are still in that direction, so trying to assert that some past perspective should prevail over the will of the country at this time is ludicrous.
Your post never made that point at all. Perhaps it was what you were thinking, but it's not what you typed. More importantly, I never suggested anything at all concerning any perspective, past present or future. I merely pointed out that the FCC's refusal to sink it's teeth far enough into the problem is the main proximate cause for the mess we're in. Had they followed through with their mandate at any point right up to the present moment, the issue would have disappeared. If they follow through within the next 30 seconds, then the issue will dissipate, although much less slowly than if they had followed through a year ago. Two years ago and it would have been a minor footnote. Four years ago and the situation would never have ocurred at all. It's getting to be more of a problem by the day, though, and will continue to do so in the future, completely irrespective of how pro-business the government might be. At some point in the not too distant future the mess will become an essentially intractable one, regardless of anyone's intent.

Edit: Perhaps my memory fails me, but I don't recall specifically having asked you to provide proof of your statements. Maybe I did, but it seems to me you were the one who brought up the notion of proof, asking me if I wanted you to prove some things concerning the current regulatory envionment.

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Old 03-23-2008, 04:34 PM   #1248
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The wrong guy

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Indeed... it was "the other guy" who brought up the whole issue of "proving" anything. In the end, for most things, it comes down to Occum's Razor: What is the most likely explanation. Expecting that they're doing things just for spite is not a likely explanation.
If you mean me, you've got the wrong guy. I'm the one who said, "Never attribute to malice that which may be adequately explained by stupidity". You're the one who claimed the situation is the result of some specific intent to the actual end, not me.

Oh, and just BTW, Occam's Razor is based upon the simplicity of the explanation, not some evaluation of its likelihood. The whole idea of Occam's razor is to try to eliminate attempts to evaluate the merits of an idea based upon some arbitrary notion of probability. The original statement was "do not multiply entities". The most common current formulation is, "The simplest solution supported by all the facts is the best."
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Old 03-23-2008, 04:56 PM   #1249
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One of the problems with dropping the analog stations (at least with TW cable) is that they will implement the CCI byte 0x02 on ALL channels (including digital simulcast of local broadcast stations). Thus, effectively rendering TTG and MRV useless except for local broadcast HD channels. So in my case, I can TTG/MRV (well, if I had two TivoHD I could MRV anyway) 6 HD local stations and nothing else.
There are ways around that, of course, but in essence you are correct, except that the simulcast local channels are also exempt from copy protection. Nonetheles, hopefully this fact will irritate enough people that they demand copy protection be eliminated altogether and congress will force the elimination of copy protection, at least for MRV situations.

OK, OK, I know, but I can dream, can't I?
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Old 03-23-2008, 06:35 PM   #1250
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Try the first 20 pages; the last 20 have devolved...
Heard a quote once (in a podcast) about arguing on the internet... sadly, its not at all P.C.

Someone start a new thread when the tuning resolver is released so I can ignore this one from now on...
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Old 03-24-2008, 08:55 AM   #1251
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Heard a quote once (in a podcast) about arguing on the internet... sadly, its not at all P.C.

Someone start a new thread when the tuning resolver is released so I can ignore this one from now on...
I'm sure there'll be 10 new threads on the subject, so you can probably safely unsubscribe from this one...in fact, I think I will right now... click.
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Old 03-24-2008, 10:17 AM   #1252
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I'm sure there'll be 10 new threads on the subject, so you can probably safely unsubscribe from this one...in fact, I think I will right now... click.
I added several users from this thread to my ignore list, but it is still out of hand. A new thread would be a good idea.
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Old 03-24-2008, 10:39 AM   #1253
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Maybe we should just invite several participants to take their argument outside while the rest of us stay inside and have a beer on me!
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Old 03-24-2008, 11:23 AM   #1254
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I suspect if anyone launches any substantive discussion about SDV, unique and different from any issues brought up previously, that discussion will become the focus of the thread.
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Old 03-24-2008, 01:58 PM   #1255
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There are ways around that, of course, but in essence you are correct, except that the simulcast local channels are also exempt from copy protection.
That's apparently not true--there is certainly no language in the regulations which even implies that and both Cox and Time Warner locally have encryption applied to their entire digital simulcast, including the locals. (What's even worst is that they mark the streams "Copy One Generation". Since they put the map the channels to the digital simulcast in CableCARDs, I can freely use TiVo Desktop to move a recording of a local broadcaster's HD channel to my PC but not the crappy digital SD version of the same program ). The digital simulcasts are not, after all, what's broadcast over-the-air, and thereby aren't explicitly covered by CFR Title 47 Section 76.630, particularly when what is broadcast over-the-air is present on the cable in its original form (and occupying 10 times the bandwidth). There's no one whose television cannot tune the still-present analog versions and relatively few whose televisions can.

If the cable providers ever go all digital there will be no analog over-the-air broadcasts, so if there's a special standard definition version it will again be something that they're creating in their plant, not subject to current FCC rules. The FCC should probably amend those rules .
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Old 03-24-2008, 06:10 PM   #1256
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I suspect if anyone launches any substantive discussion about SDV, unique and different from any issues brought up previously, that discussion will become the focus of the thread.
While that is strictly true, it would be courteous to keep in mind that this is a sticky thread at the top of the board and perhaps deserves a more measured approach than the general rabble threads below. Infrequent visitors to the community (such as myself) rely on sticky threads such as this one to stay up-to-date with any change to the SDV situation and this unrelated bickering is detrimental to that goal.
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Old 03-24-2008, 07:44 PM   #1257
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One of the other people who occasionally look at this thread hoping for some news on SDV sent me a PM to ask whether I had any notion of a release date for the Tuning Resolver. (Why do people come here looking for news on the Tuning Resolver when there are threads dedicated to it elsewhere in this forum )?

To my knowledge, the closest thing to a release date that we have on the Tuning Resolver is this joint press release by the National Cable Telecommunications Association and TiVo, Inc. which contains the statement:
Quote:
Cable operators will make the new adapters available for TiVo customers in the second quarter of 2008. Cable operators and TiVo will work cooperatively to alert TiVo customers about availability of the new adapter.
This says that they expect the first cable operators to start distributing the thing some time within the next 3 months. I would speculate that the next thing that we'll hear on the topic is that someone has been informed by their cable operator and/or TiVo that the tuning resolver is available. Until then, there's no use fretting about it: chill. If it gets significantly past June with no sign of the TR, then we can all cry bloody murder .

This information is referenced in the FAQ under the topic "Is this likely to change anytime soon?" (which maybe should be retitled something like "Will I ever be able to tune SDV channels with my TiVo?"--I've PM'd bdraw with the suggestion that he rename it).
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Old 03-25-2008, 03:08 AM   #1258
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While that is strictly true, it would be courteous to keep in mind that this is a sticky thread at the top of the board and perhaps deserves a more measured approach than the general rabble threads below. Infrequent visitors to the community (such as myself) rely on sticky threads such as this one to stay up-to-date with any change to the SDV situation and this unrelated bickering is detrimental to that goal.
[I accidentally deleted my original response to this post--you and I have discussed that offline, so you know how I feel].

The gist of it was that I don't particularly appreciate people who don't actually use this or any other forum that I'm active in coming in and asking that we consider that it's inconvenient for them to wade through any discussion that doesn't pertain to the information that their looking for. As non-participants in the forum, if there's something in these discussion that you find useful, that's wonderful, but don't expect us to make any effort at all to make it easy for you. Why should we? By your own admission, you hardly ever come here.

This is the SDV FAQ thread--in my opinion, any thread with FAQ in the title has one important post, being the first one. The first post, which tries to collect and present the information that we have on the topic of SDV, is the sole reason why this has a sticky, so we don't lose track of it. Any of the rest of the discussion is up for grabs, so long as it's centered on the topic of the FAQ, and the exchange between lrhorer and Firekite, though it'd broken down into sniping at each other without making any new points, began as a discussion of whether cable providers are justified in their decision to use SDV, which seem totally appropriate to me.
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Old 03-26-2008, 08:26 PM   #1259
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Is betting legal?

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If it gets significantly past June with no sign of the TR, then we can all cry bloody murder .
Any bets?
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Old 03-27-2008, 12:02 AM   #1260
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Any bets?
I think that they'll come in on time. They're trying to head off being made to produced DCR Plus; if they don't get a fait-accompli solution to the ugliest part of the problem (tuning SDV channels on low-end products) in the field, the FCC is very likely to order them to do the CEA's proposed DCR Plus and you'll be able to count the number of <tru2way> products ever brought to market on the fingers of one foot.
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