YOU ARE LIVING IN 21st CENTURY

Lots of jokes get emailed to me. Being a gadget person, and social networker, this is the funniest, most relatable email I’ve gotten. Either you will know someone like this or you will see yourself here.

Since this was passed on to me, I don’t know the original author but kudos to them for their astute observation and commentary! I’d be glad to link to it…

So enjoy a smile!

YOU KNOW YOU ARE LIVING IN 21st CENTURY when…

1. You accidentally enter your password on the microwave.

2. You haven’t played solitaire with real cards in years.

3. You have a list of 15 phone numbers to reach your family of three.

4. You e-mail the person who works at the desk next to you.

5. Your reason for not staying in touch with friends and family is that they don’t have e-mail addresses.

6. You pull up in your own driveway and use your cell phone to see if anyone is home to help you carry in the groceries.

7. Every commercial on television has a web site at the bottom of the screen.

8. Leaving the house without your cell phone, which you didn’t have the first 20 or 30 (or 60) years of your life, is now a cause for panic and you turn around to go get it.

10. You get up in the morning and go on line before getting your coffee.

11. You’re reading this and nodding and laughing.

12. Even worse, you know exactly to whom you are going to email this post.

13. You are too busy to notice there was no #9 on this list.

14. You actually scrolled back up to check that there wasn’t a #9 on this list.

AND NOW YOU ARE LAUGHING at yourself.

A Sad Day for Plasma TVs – “Seeing and Hearing like you never will” -Pioneer Kuro R.I.P.

"Seeing and Hearing like you never will!". It’s official. Pioneer has killed their plasma division. I got confirmation from my PR connection at Pioneer. Here’s the official lowdown The company that makes the best consumer flat screens, the reference by which all others can be compared –with the sharpest picture, blackest blacks and richest colors—has decided to get out of flat panel TV manufacturing.

I will be sporting a black armband to show my grief.

In my blog archives you will find my blog on the Kuro project. A TV so magnificent it made the hairs stand up on the back of our necks when we it first previewed. The TV picture was so realistic, the blacks so black, objects floated in mid air. It was enough to make a room full of cynical techhies gasp. But we’ll never see that in production now.

When I participated in Home Theater’s HDTV Face Off, we compared 4 flat screen HDTVs. While the brands had been covered up, none of the judges had any doubt which was the Pioneer. The Pioneer was superb and then in a distant second there were all others.

Don’t get me wrong. There are excellent TVs out there that perform well. The $7,000 Sony Bravia XBR (an LCD) has phenomenal blacks–you could tell how dark it was even when it was turned off. But Sony maximizes movies. I like a more vivid color pallet. Samsung has phenomenal contrast (again, I am referring to the LCDs) which results in a wide range of colors.

Increasingly, in the past ten years, TVs have become more expensive to produce and the profit margins have been reduced to the point of hardly being worth being in the TV manufacturing business. Most companies make up the slim TV profits with better profit lines like audio and accessories, so they can continue in the TV business. I wish Pioneer could have made that same decision.

Now what TV will I buy? I challenge the other manufacturers to step up their picture quality and blow me away. My next plasma choice is Panasonic, I recommended it for a friend recently. Hey, Sony! What will technological innovations will you bring next? Can you fix the off-access fade of your LCDs?

I feel much as I did when Ayrton Senna died at the peak of his career in a Formula One race in 1994 (my late husband turned me into a international car racing fan). Yes, there were other great drivers, but it would be years before Formula One would be the same again.

Videos to Help with the DTV transition

Well, today was the day that the analog signals were to be shut off at local TV broadcasters and only digital signals would be sent. This marked the end of an era. The end of the way that TV programs were sent to the antennas in our home. A move toward the inevitable digital domination.

The government’s decision to delay the dtv transition to June 12th made a dent in the way the transition would take place. The over 500 local TV stations across the U.S. that requested early analog signal shutoff adds to the confusion. For the stations granted the right to early shut off, many will continue with their plan to broadcast only digitally after today.

I have been looking at the information around on the internet and I see some holes that add to the confusion, or questions that are not answered in a straightforward manner. I’ve taken to video to help people understand.

The first videos may be a bit rough as I get used to being alone in front of a camera –rather than being interviewed–but I know the tips will ultimately help people understand what they need to do to prepare for the all digital TV future.

If you or anyone you know haven’t taken the steps to prepare for the transition…don’t delay. And share the information with everyone you know. It’s a valuable conversation for anyone who ever watches TV.

List of TV Stations that May Not Be Allowed to Switch Early-on February 17

Don't let your TV go blank!

Don't let your TV go blank!

A few days ago I posted a list of TV stations that had applied to turn off their analog signals on February 17th. In some areas, all the major network affiliates requested early shut off. This could leave people who live in those areas and are not yet prepared–by subscribing to cable, satellite or with an antenna plus DTV or an antenna plus converter box– without any national news.

If these stations want to make the change on February 17th, they must certify that they will take extra steps to ensure that their viewers won’t be left in the dark. Here is the FCC document explaining what they steps a station must take.

Check out the updated list...TV stations that want to make the early switch that are in the cities that are highlighted in blue on my chart, may have to certify that they have reached out to their community. Also, they may have to continue to broadcast analog signals for another month regardless.

Here’s a great article with more detail and explanation from television broadcast dot com.

HAVE AN EXTRA COUPON? NEED A COUPON? Retrevo.com has set up an unofficial program to share extra $40 converter box coupons with those that need them (There’s a waiting list) So, if you have an extra…help someone out.

Important Info on DTV Transition and Your Local TV Stations

Dont lose your favorite local stations!

Don't lose your favorite local stations!

This may be the most important information about the DTV transition that you need to know right now. The DTV transition date has been changed from February 17, 2009 to June 12, 2009. This means that most TV stations will delay turning off the analog TV transmissions until June. If you have an analog TV and use an antenna to get your local stations you may be able to continue to get your local TV programming. BUT YOU MAY NOT!

Congress is allowing for some TV stations to go forward with the change to all digital broadcasting on the February 17th date to reduce the cost to the local stations. (Broadcasting both digital and analog signals is costly for those stations who have already invested to make the change.)

Over 500 local stations across the country have asked to make the change early. This means that if you haven’t prepared for the DTV transition, you will lose those local stations that make the early change. I have received the list of those stations that will make the early change. GO HERE to Look through this list by your state and city to find out if you’ll be able to continue to get all of your local TV stations.

If you find TV stations in your area that will make the early switch to Digital, you will want to get prepared NOW. Learn more about what you need to do. To find out about antennas that you will need to use to receive those channels go to www.antennaweb.org and put in your home address.

I will be doing ONE MINUTE Video tips about the DTV transition to help you. Come back to get the link to those videos or go to my website: www.easier.tv

Don’t delay. Be ready today.

3D TV is a Reality

3D Chuck GlassesI attended CES 2009 in Las Vegas at the beginning of January and reported that 3D TV was everywhere. Today’s Superbowl commercials for “Monsters and Aliens” illustrated my point. We were at a Superbowl party where we had the 3D glasses to watch the Superbowl commercials for the Disney/Dreamworks film and for Sobe drinks. Sitting close to the Sony 60 inch DLP HDTV, wearing our paper 3D glasses, objects popped out of the TV and came at us. The picture of the 3D glasses floated in mid air and the paddle ball came straight at us. Papers floated into the room from the screen. Yes, this was real 3D on our TV. We hooted and hollered. Some of the people at the back of the room sitting high up on director’s chairs did not get the same affect, but we in the front were hooked in.

Tomorrow night, on NBC, “Chuck” will show in 3D, and I’ll be there to see how the effects appear with live-action TV. I will be researching the number of technologies of 3D TVs and reporting on them in the future. WATCH 3D “CHUCK” PREVIEW

Here’s another viewpoint and the videos.

CES adds Mac iPod/iPhone lounge

For years I have had to choose between going to MacWorld or CES. Because I mostly cover home theater, of course I chose CES. Looks like the addition of the iPod/iPhone lounge will make it easier because at last it’s included in CES. Here’s the official press release:

2010 CES iLounge Pavilion to Feature Largest Display of iPod, iPhone and Mac Technologies in Show History
Arlington, Va., January 29, 2009 – The Consumer Electronics Association (CEA)® today announced that the iLounge® Pavilion, a unified iPod®, Phone® and Mac® exhibition area at the 2010 International CES®, has quadrupled in size since its official launch last week. The iLounge Pavilion, co-sponsored by CEA and iLounge.com, will feature manufacturers and retailers of iPod and iPhone accessories, related products and services, and based on requests from vendors, will now grow to include leading Mac developers and retailers as well. Owned and produced by CEA, the 2010 International CES, the world’s largest tradeshow for consumer technology, is scheduled for January 7-10, 2010 in Las Vegas, Nevada.

“We have received an incredible response from companies interested in exhibiting in the iLounge Pavilion at the 2010 International CES,” said Karen Chupka, senior vice president, events and conferences, CEA. “In fact, the original space allocated for the pavilion sold out in less than one week – a CES show record – and we’ve quadrupled the space to accommodate the overwhelming demand. This exciting new CES Pavilion brings momentum to the consumer technology industry and reinforces the International CES as the global hub for the latest innovative technologies.”

“Leading Apple developers and retailers are excited to have such an outstanding stage at the 2010 International CES,” said Jeremy Horwitz, editor-in-chief, iLounge. “Whether they’re showing off iPod accessories, iPhone applications, or the latest and coolest new Mac products, they know that they’ll find the world’s largest audience at this great new pavilion.”

The iLounge Pavilion, originally floored with 4,000 net square feet of exhibit space which sold out in the first week following the launch, has increased to 18,000 net square feet. Exhibiting companies in the 2010 CES iLounge Pavilion, which will be housed in the Las Vegas Convention Center, South Hall 2, include Griffin Technology, Mobis Technology, Pro Clip USA, Scosche, Incase Designs, Incipio Technologies, iSkin and GelaSkins.