# Thursday, 11 May 2006

BBC being just a little bit economical with the actualite?

Widespread HDTV broadcasts via Freeview may not be possible until after the UK has fully switched to digital TV in 2012.  [via BBC NEWS | Entertainment | Sky sets date for HDTV broadcasts]

Hmmm, its the may that worries me. From my probably poor understanding from what I have read, the word should be will. Then again they may be being completely accurate but misleading - it may be that Freeview will never get High Definition TV (HDTV) - if the governement doesn't "sell" spectrum to Freeview then it isn't going to happen - hence, in my analysis, why the BBC is very interested in broadband (but I don't think that is going to work either unless they can get away with "lets make programmes 5 minutes long" [update] or users accept overnight downloads).

There looks to be an accurate statement available (note the use of will not .... at least until):

Freeview will not have enough room for HD signals, at least until switchover. In time broadband may be another way we can deliver HD programmes. [via BBC - Digital - High Definition TV]

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# Tuesday, 09 May 2006

Ouch - tipping point reached?

People who expect Labour to lose next election 65% [via Support for Labour at lowest level since 1992 - Britain - Times Online]

Matthew Parris of The Times has long held the view that Governments are like a lake into which the stones and pebbles of stupidity, incompetence, sleaze and corruption are thrown. At some point in time, the pile of debris breaks the surface and once broken there is no way back.

I am amazed that 65% expect Labour to lose. It would indicate that the pile of debris has indeed grown tall.


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# Friday, 28 April 2006

Oh thank-goodness

Ever since these numbers appeared I've been ranting to anyone who will listen in my office (0) that at 16-24 they flippin' well shouldn't be watching TV but should be doing something interesting. Once more I am indebted to those who publish something I agree with:

The BBC frets that a third of Britons now "feel that the BBC does not make programmes for them", according to its own polling, and that "60 per cent of the 16 to 24 age group watch less than three hours of TV a week". But were these figures any different during, say, the Macmillan era when the target demographic spent happy Bank Holiday weekends knocking the crap out of each other in small seaside towns? Or when the only radio stations were "Home", "Light", and "Third"? We don't know, because no one asked. It's hard to think of a time when the BBC has been more pervasive. [via BBC seeks 'Digital Assassins' | The Register]

And yes, they do seem to be getting desparate about these Assassins - I would go but I'm probably too old.

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Britain and bloggin'

"There has been disproportionate coverage of blogging -- still only a tiny proportion of people publish them," said Paul Milsom, a senior associate director at the BMRB. [via Top News Article | Reuters.co.uk]

and also:

But in Britain, despite a rapid uptake in broadband Internet connections, only 2 percent of Internet users publish a blog, a recent survey by the British Market Research Bureau (BMRB) found, while another study said most bloggers quit after three months.

Presumably because we are all too reserved or prefer to have a chat down the pub - so its just us sad old folks at home all day who "do it".

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BBC 2.0 Player - not open enough?

Now we believe that our Player .... will drive broadband.  [via BBC - Press Office - Mark Thompson Baird Lecture]

Why is it "our Player". Does the BBC make TV sets, does it make any of the freeview boxes, does it may VHS recorders or PVRs? Why then must it make the broadband player. Why not open this up to market innovation in UI? Implement a bunch of services via backstage.co.uk, provide an SDK of redistributable components for Windows/Linux and Mac that allows people to access the protected content but put their own UI around it. Some people will put free things together, some might charge in the same way that you pay for a telly. Some might put together something that allows mash up of BBC output, YouTube etc - very Web 2.0 - perhaps that is the intention and I have missed it.

What I fear is that peoples PCs'/Media PCs will end up with a whole load of different players for different contexts - a success of the web has been you stay in the same appwhereever you go. With the BBC player concept as I've seen it so far, this breaks down and fails to acknowledge that serendipity extends beyond the walls of the BBC.

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# Tuesday, 25 April 2006

The best thing I've found recently is....

After looking for a bit, we were able to find a solution to the problem called IIS Admin. IIS Admin allowed for multiple site definitions to be created under Windows XP (with only a single site started at a time).  [via IIsAdmin.NET: Create Multiple Web Sites Under Windows XP - The Code Project - C# Programming]

Since I now look after four web sites and need mirrors I can test with and also need to knock up quick test sites as well, IIS Admin.NET is incredibly useful. (Virtual PC being the other thing that has made life more bearable).

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The withering continues

Well, I think it's time to put this weblog to bed [via RussellBeattie.com - The Last Page]

Not the first and not the last but the 'A-list' continues to wither away. I know the feeling - the blog never became what is was meant to be, a personal knowledge base; despite all the stuff here I never search it. There just isn't the time to go back over what one thought might be useful to know sometime. All knowledge is aquired now, for use now. 'Just in time knowledge processing'. For a time a blog becomes a place to rant, then one gets embarassed and bored of that and so it withers away.

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# Sunday, 09 April 2006

Slow XP logoff/shutdown?

Then this is the solution (well it was for me): User Profile Hive Cleanup Service .  A service to help with slow log off and unreconciled profile problems. [via Microsoft Download Center]


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# Friday, 07 April 2006

API Lookup

Ajax-enabled API lookup service.  For CSS, HTML, XSL, XSD, PHP, MySQL, Java, J2EE, Struts, DITA and other technologies [via digg / programming]

And quite good it looks too, saves wandering through the mystical hierarchy that is MSDN for html orientated stuff.

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# Thursday, 23 March 2006

The abolition of scrutiny

Good to see more places are picking up on this little horror:

caluml writes "The Guardian is reporting that the current UK government is trying to sneak a new law though in an innocuously named bill called 'The Legislative and Regulatory Reform Bill,' which would get rid of that pesky, interfering need to put laws to the Houses of Commons and Lords to approve. [via Slashdot]

Since 1997 New Labour has included clauses in large numbers of Bills that state "if the minister thinks its good, then it is good" (paraphrase). This 'new' Bill brings all that into one tidy place and stops them having to write these pesky clauses in new Bills.

The really big question for Labour voters - how would you feel if the Tory party tried a Bill like this. If this Bill goes through, are you happy that the Tory party might have these powers one day?

Tragically, it has now come to pass that we need a written Constitution.

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