Into the Wild Digital Yonder. part 3.

Projects, Stuff and Things

I got the converter boxes in the mail about a week ago and I thought that it would be easy to hook up the giant antenna that’s attached to the roof of our tiny homestead. But like everything in this house it’s not going to be easy.

I climbed up on the roof to check out the situation, which was rusty.
I’d seen that the cable from the antenna runs into the side of the house, but I couldn’t find where it came out. I looked in the front room, nothing. I went down to the root cellar… (this house is old)… nothing there. I crawled under the front room of the house to look for the cable… nothing. Then finally I went to the outside of the house and gave it a little pull… it came right out. Looks like nobody has used this thing in 30 years. then, thinking of my next step, I decided to see If I could re-route the wire into the window and use it instead of rewiring the antenna. But of course, nothing is easy in this house, the wire is glued into a hole that runs into the screened in porch. No problem, I’ll just dig it out a little with a screwdriver and everything will be peachy. So, after about 20 minutes of scraping of thick tar… the cable snaps and I’m stuck on the roof with only 6 feet of cable. Which barely reaches the window. So I test it out by taping the converter box to the outside of the window and hooking the busted cable into it. There’s nothing like having to point the remote out the window to get it to work, Ghetto style!

Bottom Line: It Works!

I’ll have to re wire the cable, but it’s not going to be that hard… right.

Into the Wild Digital Yonder. part 2.

Projects, Stuff and Things

I cant shake it. That need to buy new DVDs and products from movies. Even as I’m packing up the first shipment of DVDs to send off the that great disc buyer in the sky ( I still want new ones! I read an article about Matt Groening and the new Futurama movie coming out soon and I thought “Wouldn’t it be great to have all those movies sitting along with the series DVDs” That was my first thought, not “I hope this one is good” or “I can’t wait to see it” but “I want to have the whole set”

Is there some kind of pill that I can take that will make me slightly less OCD about this kind of thing. I still need to be a little bit obsessed in order to get all my projects done… but I just don’t want to keep collecting junk so that I can have the full set.

I’m not going to buy that dvd, mostly because I haven’t bought the others. But really because I have a plan for a cheaper, better, all-digital lifestyle.


Dr. Boxlove or how I learned to stop worrying and go digital. part one.

Entertainment, Movies, Projects, Stuff and Things

I’m pretty savvy in the digital world. I’ve had an mp3 player since 2001 and I haven’t bought a physical CD since High School. But I’ve just realized that there’s just something scary about getting rid of physical media. It might be that I’ve moved past the time in my life where I want to have all the movies I like out on display. That is a very geeky thing to do, be defined my our choices in movies. It’s the first time that I’ve ever really felt like I’m growing up… get off my lawn kids!

This project started a few months ago when I hooked up a modded Xbox running XBMC in the living room and networked it to a file server running Linux in the other room.  suddenly it was very easy to play all the media files that I had *cough* acquired *cough* in college.  This and the introduction and acceptance of the Blu-ray format caused me to question the value of the 100’s of DVDs that I had collected over the years. I suddenly felt like a guy who had closets full of VHS tapes that were now worthless.  Well, they’re not as worthless as VHS, they wont fade over time and they take up less room. But in the coming resolution wars (lazer 3d quad HD TVs) what good is something that’s only 480p? Suddenly the “Ultimate Collectors Edition” has become no better than a Chinatown bootleg.  Couple that with the news that a co-worker at the office got rid of all of his DVDs online and made about $140 bucks and I was sold on the idea of going digital.

I’ve decided to keep some of the discs, I cannot get rid of any signed Kevin Smith movie and I think the people who design the boxes for Futurama should get some kind of award. So I developed an informal ranking system based on my love for the movie, the quality of the box, and the price I can sell it for. I have 4 ranks…

  1. Keep the DVD.
  2. Copy the DVD to DVD-R and sell the DVD.
  3. Rip the DVD to 700mb file and sell the DVD.
  4. Just Sell it.

I’m in the middle of this process now and I’ve noticed something, I really like physical media. I mean I haven’t watched some of these movies in years but I like being able to pick up the box and look through the materials.  I’m sure it’s not just me, I think it’s a geeky thing, but I appreciate a well designed box.  I’ve found myself setting aside some of the movies that I was going to sell because they had great packaging.  I never thought I’d be the guy to hang on to the media he grew up with. My brother in law has literally hundreds of cassette tapes and I thought he was crazy for keeping them.  I’ve told people before that I was going to sit out this round of media (Blu-ray) and wait for the digital revolution to come and based on the size of the Blu-ray market, I’m not the only one.  But I’m here to tell you that it is going to be hard to transition.

Also you should know that the three disc “Ace Ventura” collection has a lovely box.