[mythtv-users] Some notes on Google TV
brad+myth at templetons.com
Mon Nov 15 22:36:01 UTC 2010
> I don't think you will ever see that. What Netflix does not want is your
> being able to make a recording of the content, and Linux, being open,
> will of course allow you to do that. They want a "protected path" for
> the video all the way through, including the OS. The Linux-based devices
> that can do Netflix apparently use a proprietary chip to handle the DRM.
> (Actually I'd guess Netflix couldn't care less if you record things, but
> the studios who own the material do seem to care, and thus won't make
> material available to Netflix unless they comply with their wishes)
> That's the reason I allow a Windows machine in my garage. It's running
> PlayOn (which requires Windows), and exports everything (including
> Netflix and Amazon VOD) as a UPnP server.
> Of course there is nothing preventing me from recording the component
> output of a UPnP player with an HD-PVR, but I guess they haven't figured
> that out yet.
> But why would I want to record something I can watch any time I want to?
> Let Netflix store things, and save me money and power.
> mythtv-users mailing list
> mythtv-users at mythtv.org
Of course they are trying to close the analog hole. And while recording
is nice because it gives you a real mpeg on your disk, the downside is
that the quality is going to be lower, and also lower per gigabyte.
Generally the best thing to do is to record the pre-compressed encoded
stream if you can, and not to transcode.
However there are many reasons to enjoy having an open recording, even
of something you can fetch any time.
a) You can't watch it any more if you cancel your netflix subscription
b) You can use Myth's "Speed up with adjusted audio" which is one of my favs
c) You can do commercial elimination -- a feature coerced out of other
PVRs. However, I believe there are alternates to make this possible in
the GTV situation.
d) You can extract clips and screen captures for fair uses (which I have
actually done a few times.)
e) You can watch without using up a lot of your internet connection
f) You can copy to your laptop and watch on the plane. (Of course DVDs
also allow this.) Or in remote locations or on your phone.
This is a good list, but at the same time not enough to win over many
users. I do expect the speedup with audio correction to show up
eventually in commercial players. Commercial elimination is a tricky
one. TV Networks will use what pressure they can to block it from
commercial products. It can be done on DRM players through
crowdsourcing, I think, even without access to the video stream -- if
you can FF in the stream. As you know, with many online sources today
like Hulu the commercials can't be skipped.
But otherwise I agree, why spend disk space on a copy. For me, I almost
never watch again anyway.
On the 3rd hand, I would like to continue the push for open video
systems so we don't have to play all these games. But for Myth to
thrive it needs to be ahead of other offerings, and it is facing
challenges in a few areas. Playing netflix is one issue. The other
issue is that the cable boxes won't output in-the-clear firewire for
various channels, in particular premium channels. Since I don't want
premium channels this has not bothered me, but it does bother me that if
I accidentally tune one it seems to muck up my firewire. If I really
wanted HBO, I might have to move away from Myth. However, the new DLNA
DVR control protocols offer an option, particularly if we can make the
transition smooth. Google TV does that by being able to send the HDMI
through the GTV box, allowing it to both seamless feed of the video, and
even to do OSD on top of it -- presumably by having its own HDCP licence.
It's not out of the question that we might see HDMI input jacks
available for our PCs to allow pass through, but probably not
modifcation of the stream for OSD unless there is a protocol for that.
Alternately we might be able to use ir-blaster (ugh) or DLNA or Anynet
to command the TV to switch video sources for a slightly ugly switch to
playing from a satellite DVR STB. At least one would still control
everything with the same remote and interface, but the OSD would then
come from the STB when you hit pause etc.
I this this would be tolerable, if imperfect.
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