LifeDrive Notes: Open Thread For Comments!

May 26, 2007

Right. This thread will permit Comments.

And you don’t have to register to post!

Posts probably won’t be moderated until after I see them (that’s what happened last time).

But don’t pull any shit. Your snarkiness will be gone when I see it, so be good.

So post Comments, Suggestions, Questions related to the LifeDrive only.

If you want to be helpful, tell me where the hell I should put .FLV files on my SD so that the Dmitry-modded Flash Player can see and play them. I’d like to see what straight-from-YouTube vids play like.

Obey the sign.


LifeDrive Notes: Two Quick Erases!

May 26, 2007

Tried to get my old TE Memos DB onto the LifeDrive via HotSync.

After 45 minutes and seeing no HD activity on the PC side, I aborted. Had to pull the USB cord!

HotSync log stated that I had probably filled the LifeDrive’s memory! It further reported that it couldn’t send over 3 of the gobs of Memos.

It could be so!

I just went to Info on the LifeDrive: 54.9MB free.

My Memos DB? Close to 64MB!!

Urrrgghhh…

I will have to do some deletions on the desktop before I can shift everything over.

In the meantime, let me see if I can just get Calendar, Contacts, and Tasks sent over for a start!

Later: Yes, that went well. But when I tried to install some files, Memos tried to Sync again and messed up everything. I’ve just set Memos sync action to Do Nothing as Default. That should keep me out of further trouble until I go through my near-2,000 Memos with a machete next week!

Even without a spinning hard drive in it, this LifeDrive gets hot while HotSyncing. They didn’t have to make hardware that’d take the sync trademark literally!!

Here I am, a veteran Palm user and I’m getting tripped up.

Can you imagine the frustration of those who aren’t tech-savvy to this? They’d fling it out the window (OK, return it for a refund!). I believe it’s this crap that has sent Palm’s marketshare into freefall.

For God’s sake, why is it ten years later and there’s no Progress Bar in HotSync?


Resistance Is Futile: The Borg Stole It From Gerry Anderson!

May 26, 2007

Ho, ho, ho!

So all of you going around with what you think is a Borg slogan — Resistance is futile! — you’re mouthing a key line from an episode of Space:1999 called The Dorcons!

Don’t believe me?

It’s right in this YouTube clip! Fast-forward to 1:55. And just as the Borg were the most feared adversary in the Star Trek universe, so were the Dorcons!

Script by Johnny Byrne. (Now, did he write that line or did Fred Freiberger insert it?)

I bet that line stuck in the head of writer Michael Piller and manifested itself — perhaps unconsciously — in the heat of scripting. He had to have watched Space:1999.

Gerry Anderson inspired many, many people.


LifeDrive Notes: Playing Video

May 26, 2007

My first test was to torment by battery by seeing how long it could do video.

This is an unscientific test as the video files were different bitrates and screen sizes. Also, for a little over an hour I had screen brightness at 50%, while for a half hour it was down to 1/8th, and another half hour down to the lowest possible setting. Volume also varied between 2/3rds to max. However, even with all that, I did three hours last night — and still had 53% of battery remaining!

I was running off the SD. Both TCPMP and the vids were on the SD.

I’m keeping the internal CF clean right now until I’ve installed my permanent apps and files. (A task I hope to accomplish this weekend…)

Previously in this blog:
LifeDrive category


YouTube Vs. P2P: YouTube Wins?

May 26, 2007

I’ve been setting up my LifeDrive. My first tests were to torment the battery by seeing how long it could play video. (My results are in a separate LifeDrive post.)

What I discovered doing this is that YouTube might be better than P2P!

One of the things I played on my LifeDrive was an episode of Space:1999, titled The Dorcons. It’s still up on YouTube. (It’s a significant episode I will address in a separate post.)

I ripped it using Download Helper. Then I converted the Flash video (.FLV) to a DiVXed AVI file without changing the 240×320 size. Playing it back on the LifeDrive using TCPMP in landscape (where the program will resize it to fill the screen without messing with the aspect ratio), I discovered something very surprising: It was Good Enough!

P2P is known for transferring massive AVI files. Even when compressed using DiVX or XViD codecs, they are still large because seeders are ripping them from HDTV signals or widescreen DVD. (And now HD-DVD too!)

Well, an episode of Doctor Who is usually around 350MB and it can take, depending on the episode’s age, weeks to download.

And, for a LifeDrive, that’s just overkill! I don’t need HDTV-quality. That’s what I’d eventually buy the HD-DVD or BluRay DVD boxed set of the series to get.

So, I’m beginning to think that, if I can find reliable sources for Doctor Who episodes on YouTube, I’ll just give up on the P2Ping of them. Grabbing them from YouTube is just so much faster and to watch them on a LifeDrive is really Good Enough.

I’m also beginning to suspect this has been the case with other people too. Most people are not doing P2P to rob creators. They are doing it for free previews with an eye towards legal purchasing (when that’s possible; Gerry Anderson’s New Captain Scarlet has yet to be legally available on DVD here in the US, dammit!). I’ve noticed a strange dropoff in the P2P population in the past few months. Far fewer files are available and it seems the number of people who are harboring such files has dropped by at least two thirds. I think YouTube is the reason for this.

If the studios — movies and TV — were smart, they’d start cutting deals with YouTube. YouTube’s 240×320 resolution is not a threat to either TV or DVD sales. The resolution is Good Enough to be a great sales tool to entice people to stay connected to their favorite TV series and to help them decide which DVDs they should purchase.

Are you listening, Viacom?

A Writers Guild strike is coming. If it happens (and it will if you Suits don’t give the writers everydamnedthing you’ve cheated them out of since the 1980s!), traffic on YouTube will really blast off. And that could undermine both TV and movies in way the Suits would rather not have happen. (What, you think Google wouldn’t jump at the chance to steal your audiences by offering a higher-resolution YouTube? I think they will.)

For me, I think my days of P2P are coming to an end…