A blog by M3 Sweatt with thoughts on time, technology, products and services at Microsoft
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What's on your TV: cable, satellite or OTA + the Web?
Someone asked today on a local mailing list for suggestion on local television options: Dish, DirecTV or Comcast (our local MSO). I noted that it used to be that if you wanted to get reasonable TV service throughout your home, cable offered the best option requiring no additional set top boxes for...
1 Aug 2010
Thinking about ditching cable TV? Steps to a more integrated entertainment experience with Windows and Xbox 360
Last Thanksgiving, I talked with my friend, prolific blogger/ Twitterer Beth Blecherman (aka techmama on Twitter) in Silicon Valley about the move in our house away from cable to a system that would allow us to get our TV entertainment programming using the free digital airwaves and the wide Internet...
15 Mar 2010
Suggestions for weekend reading, Bill Gates explains why vaccines matter, and more of what I've read this week
This week John C. Maxwell offered this famous QOTD : Many of life's failures are people who did not realize how close they were to success when they gave up. – Thomas Edison To end the work week, Dominic Carr offers his own suggestions for weekend reading on the Microsoft Blog It’s Friday afternoon...
5 Feb 2010
Dell's new Inspiron Zino HD: ZDNet says it's "Dell's answer to Apple's Mac mini."
Of interest is the new Dell Inspiron Zino HD which ZDNet calls " Dell's answer to Apple's Mac mini ." "The Zino HD is an interesting machine because Dell has managed to cram a lot of power into the Mac mini-esque 7.8 inch by 7.8 inch footprint of the system. Buyers can choose from a selection...
18 Nov 2009
My life as a customer: this week, it's about cable television… and more than the 2009 DTV move
My life as a customer. This week, it's cable television and the proposed digital television transition... not be confused with that other digital TV transition … as Tweeted today . If you read my post about my email and Tweet exchanges with Comcast , you'll recall that I wrote to register my complaint...
31 Jan 2009
Obama's team requests to postpone transition: I mean the digital TV transition on Feb 17, 2009.
An interesting metaphor given the wet, rainy weather we have this week in the Redmond area: 40 days and nights from now, the television world should be changing to digital broadcast in the States. But not if Obama’s team request for a delay in digital TV transition is heard. As Joelle Tessler, technology...
8 Jan 2009
NBC Video Direct restores world order at home, saves my bacon
As I Twittered (tweeted? I'll get this right), sometimes you forget to do something: pick up milk on the way home, feed the cat or empty the dishwasher. On the whole, not so serious. And with a digital vide recorder or a Media Center PC, you shouldn't have to worry about missing an episode...
28 Sep 2008
Ready to watch the 2008 Beijing Olympics? Windows Vista Media Center can help
If you are interested in catching up with all the Olympics but don't have the time to wade through (or be awake for) the sporting event of you choice (the freestyle swimming, fencing, soccer and the Decathalon here at home), we're pleased to announce NBC Olympics On The Go -- powered by TVTonic on Windows...
7 Aug 2008
Is the Microsoft Wireless Entertainment Desktop 8000 too much? It depends...
Last year I posted an entry on how to choose the best computer which included an article by Mike Himowitz , columnist at the Baltimore Sun. Himowitz wrote the article " Sticker tells shopper key parts of a laptop " which covers "the specific components of a portable PC." Overall, I like Mike's advice...
23 Feb 2008
CES 2008: Getting around Las Vegas on the Media Center Express
For those of you going to CES, Nick reports on the Windows Vista blog today that there will be one more way (aside from ) to cruise around Viva Las Vegas... the new the Windows Vista Media Center Express: "This year at CES we're partnering with PodTech to provide ground transportation specifically for...
4 Jan 2008
Article: PC World on Best Products for Streaming Audio and Video
In MSN Tech & Gadgets (love that subsite) there's an informative post from by PC World columnist Lincoln Spector on the " Best Products for Streaming Audio and Video With Ease ." "Want to watch your movies in the bedroom or listen to your albums in the kitchen? We identify which devices do...
29 Jul 2007
There's a good chance your next computer will be a notebook
Unless you are buying a workstation-class comuer for development or high-end use (video gaming, video editing), chances are that your next computer will be a notebook. And for most consumer purchasers, this seems to be even more likely. The industry analyst isuppli reports this week that they estimate...
20 Jun 2007
IPTV, Media Centre, VOD rumours... oh my
Long Zheng reports in his blog earlier this week that "a trademark application in Australia... looks to be for a video-on-demand service from Microsoft yet to be identified has been made available publically." Ars Technica picked up on Zheng's report noting that "the trademark description also mentions...
23 May 2007
The great US digital television migration starts on February 17, 2009
Do you have a TV antenna connection that plugs directly in to your TV or Media Center PC? If so, think about how you will prepare for a transition that is finally coming in the industry: on February 17, 2009, the US will make the transition to digital television, as analog TV channels will be cut off...
23 May 2007
Microsoft to offer Vista upgrade coupons starting Oct. 26
AP reported yesterday that "people who buy certain Windows personal computers this holiday season will be offered free or heavily discounted coupons to upgrade to Microsoft Corp.'s new operating system, Windows Vista, under a program designed to spur sales despite Vista's delay." Companies including...
25 Oct 2006
Apple's iTV promise is a reality today in Media Center, and others
As a follow up to my , the New York Times has on article on Apple's Plans to Inhabit Living Room. " Steven P. Jobs , Apple Computer ’s chief executive, concluded a much-anticipated company event on Tuesday with his usual tease, noting that he had “one last thing” to introduce. "Then, in an unusual...
13 Sep 2006
AppleTV... er, iTV coming soon: new Apple Announcements
As I mused in my guess on Apple's next "showtime" , Apple did announce today an upgrade to iTunes, some new iPods (including a new iPod, iPod shuffle and iPod nano ) as well as a device to stream television programming to the TV with Apple's "iTV"... "... customers can purchase and download [programs...
12 Sep 2006
My guess on Apple's next "showtime"? Front Row with DVR
News.com reports that Apple Computer has invited the press for a "Special Event" next week in San Francisco. News and most reports following Amazon's Amazon.com's Unbox Internet movies and TV show service guess that... "The early bet seems to be a new movie section for the iTunes store, perhaps...
9 Sep 2006
Link: Using the Xbox 360 for music, movies, pictures and more
Over the weekend I talked about From the Expert Zone: Xbox 360 as a Media Center Extender. A quick visit during a meeting this morning, looking at the Xbox site, showed this connection point on how to... See this link as this page provides more on the features and how to use the Xbox 360 for music...
31 Aug 2006
From the Expert Zone: Xbox 360 as a Media Center Extender
Got a call this weekend from friends who finally took the plunge and brought home a new Xbox 360 . They already have a Media Center PC and they wanted to know how to configure their new game machine as a Media Center Extender . My response: why read when you can watcn and learn. Just fire up the broadband...
28 Aug 2006
Correction: Media Center up to 14M units
With respect to my post today re: Slate on "The Myth of the Living-Room PC" I was sent a note via the blog email feature, reminding me of Matt Goyer's Media Center blog and his post noting that MCE is now at 14 million units. (Matt points to an interview in the Seattle PI with Robbie Bach, in which he...
11 Aug 2006
Slate on "The Myth of the Living-Room PC"
Thanks for the IM with the article in Slate this week on "The Myth of the Living-Room PC." From the article: "McCracken says most homes are consolidating around a two-hub model. A PC (or Mac) with some multimedia features anchors the home office, while a TV with some computerized gear—think...
11 Aug 2006
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