The Future Of Entertainment Ends With U

by TheMadHat on January 4, 2008

Friday Tea Time will resume next week. I didn’t really read any posts because I was boycotting the internet while I was on vacation. It sucked and I don’t recommend it. I have Eleventy Billion feeds to catch up on. Anyway, on to the “quality unique content”.

Let’s talk about some traditional media. Now YouTube is fun and all, but consumers still want professionally created media. Can you imagine a cable lineup of all YouTube Channels? We’d certainly get more work done because we wouldn’t be sitting around watching TV all the time. Not only do consumers want professional content, but we want it immediately and we want it on our schedule. I don’t like adhering to the schedules of cable TV executives. Who works normal hours anymore?

Tivo and DVR boxes were a good start, but we still have to deal with manually setting up the recordings and if you miss one, you get nothing. If a football game runs over, you miss the first half of the show. How many of you viewers missed your favorite shows during the World Series? Me too. Let’s take a look at two new products that will revolutionize the way we destroy our productivity with mindless entertainment.

Vudu I got a Vudu for Festivus this year and I’m going to say it’s about the slickest new product I’ve seen in a long time. It takes the idea of pay per view on cable, turns it into an easier to use, more reliable, HD toy box that not only lets you rent movies on demand but also buy and store them on your Vudu box forever (of course you can’t burn them to DVD because of the stupid DRM asswipes).

This biggest problem I always had with pay per view on cable networks was the lack of selection. For example, the movie selection right now on my HD pay-per-view consists of 9 movies. What? Now let’s look at the Vudu…5000+ and there is a much larger selection of new releases (I haven’t found an actual number and counting them seemed a little extreme). The point is just about everything you can think of is available. (Not much is currently available in HD, but they will be releasing many more soon. According to the FAQ, they currently have deals in place with Lionsgate, Paramount, and Universal Studios for HD films).

Vudu RemoteThe second cool thing is the availability of older TV programs (Coming soon). I remember a few years ago everyone was pumped about the fox show 24. Well, I’ve never seen it because I missed like the 3rd hour and was confused so I gave up. Now I can go back and watch them all at my leisure. Remember Firefly? If you’re a geek you do. They’ve got it. And of course we all know who loves Buffy…including me. They’ve got that too (same director I think).

Third cool thing…the interface and remote. It’s extremely easy to use and doesn’t have 49 buttons like the fourteen other remotes on my coffee table. They use a mouse-like clicky scroll wheel, and it just looks cool.

Finally, they have outstanding customer service. I haven’t had any problems at all, but since my girlfriend got it for me and buying electronics for me might be the most difficult task on earth she contacted them frequently with questions about HD resolutions, cables that were included, etc. They responded with in minutes to every email she sent and answered all the questions she had so thanks to the Vudu folks.

HuluWant to watch shows that were on this week? Hulu is your answer. I’ve been a beta tester for a few months now and this makes consuming my never ending stream of entertainment as easy as baking a pie (actually I can’t bake a pie but whatever). I posted a review of Hulu a few months ago so there’s no need to do it again. All I can say is throw your Tivo out with your old tube TV, plug-in your laptop to your new flat screen and welcome to the new world of entertainment. Enjoy!

(All photos courtesy of Vudu and Hulu [Hey Hulu people...that's two positive reviews from me so give me some invites to hand out or something])

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Rhea Drysdale January 4, 2008 at 10:11 am

Not a single sarcastic remark in the article… why am I reading this crap? ;)

On a serious note, I’m so out of the loop when it comes to entertainment this might be worth making a technological leap. Thanks for the thorough reviews!

Also, going Internet-free isn’t as scary as you make it sound.

TheMadHat January 4, 2008 at 1:30 pm

Internet free for a week apparently made me lost my sarcastic wit…and that’s the scary part. I’ll return with vengeance next week :)

SlightlyShadySEO January 5, 2008 at 3:38 pm

hmm..I like the looks of these. Although I have my MythBox, which is oh so pretty…
Perhaps a change someday.
I have to admit, I dislike the paying part. haha.

TheMadHat January 5, 2008 at 8:29 pm

:) the paying part always blows…we just gotta figure out how to hack it.

I’ve heard of the MythBox but never seen it. It’s a UK only thing isn’t it?

dk January 6, 2008 at 1:15 am

My dream in life has been and still is to be able to say to my wife who is from Norway and missed out on much of our excellent television growing up,

“You know, the brittish guy from Hogans Hero’s, but not the one that said SURVEY SAYS… Look, I’ll show you”

and then then click, click, and we are watching the 43rd episode that has my uncle as a walk on guest star who is shot at minute three.
That will be a real use of technology.


SlightlyShadySEO January 6, 2008 at 10:35 pm

Nah, you can run it anywhere. Open source.
I actually have it partitioned off. Dual boot with XP Media Center edition.
Because I have a nasty habit of hurting linux oh so badly.

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