Archive for the ‘TiVo’ Category

Best of TiVo Video Downloads, July 22, 2008

Tuesday, July 22nd, 2008

[Between John and me we’ve both been very busy the last few weeks, but we should be back on track for continued “Best of” episodes from here on out. Here’s the latest! –Stephen]

While you were watching America’s Got Talent (which is apparently trying to make that title an oxymoron) and the much more excellent So You Think You Can Dance (Twitch and Katie FTW, btw), I was watching everything there is to watch in the world of TiVo Video Downloads. Here’s a rundown of what I enjoyed this week.

  1. For years, we’ve enjoyed watching ordinary people do extraordinarily stupid things, and now the Internet’s given us a perfect word for those actions: FAIL. And this week, nothing says “fail” like watching a kid with the bright idea of having his unmanned lawnmower pull him on his skateboard from Break.com. The skateboard gets away from this genius kid and an epic FAIL ensues.
  2. After hearing one of my co-workers talk about how much they liked beYOU.tv, I gave it a closer look this week and you know what? She was right. beYOU.tv offers a great mix of holistic lifestyles and exercise routines designed to help you be a better you. This week’s stretching exercises were a definite help before a charity 10k that I attended on Saturday.
  3. This week’s Ultra Kawaii Pets made me laugh and I don’t know whether or not to feel bad about it. The topic: Animals recovering from injuries. I know it doesn’t sound funny on the surface, but when you see a montage of cute animals wearing those cones they attach to keep them from messing with their stitches, you can’t help but laugh. This enjoyment was in stark contrast to one of my biggest pet peeves: Animals dressed as humans.
  4. For some reason, I’ve had a bit of a dining affair with lamb this weekend. The summer started with an outdoor meal at a close-by German restaurant that serves amazing lamb shanks the size of my fist and continues with Greek lamb dishes from a local restaurant near TiVo Central. So when I saw that The Minimalist was preparing lamb this week, I was overjoyed. As always, it’s a simple dish that I’m sure I could pull off in my own kitchen given the chance which I think is truly the mark of a great cooking show. It’s nice to see fancy things, but it’s also nice to see something that I could actually make myself…especially if it’s lamb.
  5. Finally this week, I have to highlight our newest channel: Nite Fite. Now if you missed The Meth Minute 39 (the thirty-nine cartoons from Dan Meth featured on Thursdays on Channel Frederator) then you missed the origins of Penalty and Lloyd. To say that they antagonize each other is a bit of an understatement. Nite Fite is an animated talk show that tackles a new topic each Thursday in the style of any talking head show on the 24 hour news networks. They’re loud, they’re obnoxious and they’re hilarious. Episode One dealt with the absolute selling out of The Who to the producers of the CSI franchise and almost made Diet Coke come out of my nose.

tivo.com update

Thursday, July 17th, 2008

We just finished an update to tivo.com to make the rest of our application pages match the new design. Check out the Video Download page, for example.

City By City launches on TiVo Video Downloads

Monday, June 23rd, 2008

Another new channel for you today: City By City has been added to the Lifestyle category of the TiVo Video Download service, thanks to our partner, On Networks.

City By City is “a travel show with a twist, your virtual little black book for the swankiest cities across Europe.”

This show will publish every Monday (along with the other five series we’ve added so far from On Networks).

The first two episodes focus on Berlin and Milan.

To create a Season Pass, visit its page on TiVo Central Online, or on your DVR, head to TiVo Central -> Find Programs & Downloads -> Download TV, Movies, & Web Video -> Browse Other Videos -> All -> City By City.

[City By City logo]

Best of TiVo Video Downloads, June 23, 2008

Monday, June 23rd, 2008

[Please enjoy John T.’s latest list of the best of TiVo Video Downloads. –Stephen]

With this week’s premiere of Celebrity Family Feud (which should be listed as “Celebrity” Family Feud), you can tell that we’ve officially entered the crazy “throw it at the wall and see what sticks” part of the summer. Although, I am cheering for a few shows to stick around (Swingtown is like a traffic accident you just can’t stop looking at) and happy to have a few old friends back (Nancy, Andy and the rest of the Botwin’s on Weeds), I’m glad to have my summer entertainment supplemented with all-new TiVo Video Download goodness. Here’s what I was into this week.

  1. The Meth Minute 39 train came hurtling into the Channel Frederator station this week with its final episode, which was dedicated to the fact that it was the last episode of The Meth Minute 39… clever. I’ve enjoyed most of the past 39 weeks of Dan Meth’s opus, especially the now infamous “Internet People” episode that started the whole thing off 39 weeks ago.
  2. ViroPOP‘s Zaproot had a great green story this week about a tanker that offset 30% of its fuel consumption by attaching a giant sail to itself for the duration of its journey. With the cost of oil skyrocketing, it’s nice to see that we’ve come up with solutions from the 1700s to help us reduce our costs.
  3. Budget Health Nut, one of our newer channels from the folks at ON Networks, featured an easy-to-make recipe for healthy beef enchiladas. Now I know we all love Taco Bell and their endless supply of combinations for the same five items (the beef Crunchwrap Supreme is a religious experience) but with bathing suit season upon us, we could all use a fast food alternative.
  4. I was going to go see The Love Guru this weekend…but alas, I could not after seeing The New York Times review posted in Movie Minutes last Friday. To say that the review was brutal would be an understatement. At one point, the reviewer is debating whether The Love Guru is worse than Mike Myers last live-action movie (the terrible adaptation of The Cat in the Hat) but refuses to make a decision on which is worse, as that would require watching both movies again. Ouch.
  5. Last but not least this week, there was The Onion‘s coverage of the high school Tony awards. As a drama kid in high school and a theater major in college, I can attest to the accuracy of these ridiculous awards. This episode actually hit a bit too close to home for me at first, but also brought back some awesomely awkward memories with its lower-thirds like “Host Mr. B urges students never to settle for a teaching job.” Somewhere in the middle of nowhere USA, my high school drama teacher is still telling kids the same thing.

MediaBytes with Shelly Palmer comes to TiVo Video Downloads

Tuesday, June 17th, 2008

Here we are, halfway through June with no new channels yet? We must be slacking! While we have a lot more in store soon, here’s an exciting one to keep you busy: MediaBytes with Shelly Palmer launched last night, in the News and Technology categories. This is a breezy 3-minute update featuring tech pundit Shelly Palmer (of shellypalmer.com) running down the day’s tech news highlights: “News you can use about technology, media and the Internet.”

MediaBytes will offer its updates each weekday. Check it out!

To subscribe, visit the TiVoCast section of TiVo Central Online, or on your DVR head to TiVo Central -> Find Programs & Downloads -> Download TV, Movies, & Web Video -> Browse Other Videos -> All -> MediaBytes.

Episodes from Monday (about the iPhone 3G among other stories) and Tuesday (talking about Verizon, Tiger Woods, NBC, Adobe, and Brightcove vs. Move Networks) are available to download now.

[MediaBytes with Shelly Palmer logo]

New Video Download Channels for May

Tuesday, June 17th, 2008

I fell a little behind updating you on all the exciting new partners we’ve added in the last few weeks. Overall, eight new Video Downloads channels were launched in May. I previously described Zen Living. Here are the other seven new channels.

  • Zipidee Action Sports (zipidee.com)
    Launched on 5/15; new shows every Wednesday
    In the Fitness category of Video Downloads, Zipidee Action Sports brings us “cutting edge BMX, skateboarding, surfing, mountain biking, snowboarding, and more!”
  • beYOU.tv (beYOU.tv)
    Launched on 5/15; new shows every Wednesday
    Also found in the Fitness category of Video Downloads, beYOU.tv “brings you informational and inspirational video to help you attain all of your fitness, health and wellness goals.”
  • Budget Health Nut (ON networks)
    Launched on 5/21; new shows every Monday
    In the How-To category, “Don’t let modest funds get in the way of gourmet taste. Instead, learn how to shop, cook and eat on a budget with culinary cheapskate, Joe Dias.”
  • Cocktails on the Fly (ON networks)
    Launched on 5/21; new shows every Monday
    Also found in the How-To category, “Alberta Straub (a.k.a Miss Flighty) is known for turning fresh homemade ingredients into wildly sexy, exuberant drinks.”
  • ON Dating (ON networks)
    Launched on 5/21; new shows every Monday
    Also found in the How-To category, “Online dating is the fastest growing social phenomenon on the Internet, and something celebrity dating coach Andrea Syrtash knows all about.”
  • Golf Tips (ON networks)
    Launched on 5/29; new shows every Monday
    Also found in the How-To category, Golf Tips with Joe Beck “is a show that will make your drive longer, your putts more accurate, and your game better.”
  • Vogue.TV (vogue.tv)
    Launched on 5/29; new shows every Tuesday and Thursday
    In the Lifestyle category, Vogue.TV takes you behind the scenes of fashion, beauty, and culture and gives you up-to-the-minute trend reports and more.

To subscribe to any of these, visit the Video Downloads page on TiVo Central Online, or on your broadband-connected Series2 or Series3 DVR, head to TiVo Central -> Find Programs & Downloads -> Download TV, Movies, & Web Video -> Browse Other Videos -> All.

Best of TiVo Video Downloads, June 16, 2008

Monday, June 16th, 2008

[Here’s the latest from production specialist extraordinaire John T. –Stephen]

It’s official. I spent more time this week watching Video Downloads than actual TV. Besides Battlestar Galactica‘s big “huh?” ending and Tiger’s awesome performance at the U.S. Open, was there anything else great on regular TV that I missed out on? I don’t think so. I’m working my way back through the first three seasons of Weeds in preparation for this week’s premiere (downloaded directly to my TiVo thanks to Amazon Unbox) but here’s my Top 5 Free Video Downloads from the past week:

  1. “How can you not care about Skaar? He’s the son of the Hulk!” “Any guy on a dinosaur with a huge axe…yes!” Two great quotes from today’s episode of The Stack from Pulp Secret. It’s impossible not to love Alex, Justin and Pete’s thrice-weekly comic book reviews, even if Justin and Pete are getting closer and closer to choking each other.
  2. Speaking of The Hulk…it seemed like the green guy was everywhere I turned this week (four of our channels referenced the release of the Hulk movie in one way or another). But when it comes to parody, you can always count on the folks at Barely Political to bring the hype back to this year’s presidential election. This week, the ubiquitous Obama Girl met her new nemesis “The Incredible McCain Girl”…and hilarity ensued. Watch for cameos by Justin and Jared from Indy Mogul and Rush Limbaugh…just because.
  3. Unfortunately, we’re just one episode away from the finale of The Meth Minute 39 on Channel Frederator. This week, we looked into the future of The Meth Minute 39 Thousand…and the creative bankruptcy that accompanies it. My personal favorites: “Fire Cat” (“Don’t be on fire, OK?”) and “Stoic Squirrel and the Omniverse of Madness.”
  4. GeekBrief.TV successfully combined two of my favorite things into Episode 375. First, there was a new gaming PC that could also double as housing for five (seriously, it’s huge). Second, they highlighted the addition of the Microsoft Surface to the iBar in Vegas. It’s worth a look if you’re a fan of gaming, bars or things you can touch.
  5. Finally this week, there was the sad news of the sudden passing of veteran journalist Tim Russert. Today’s Veracifier does a good job of summing up the reactions across yesterday’s Sunday morning talk shows. I grew up just outside of Washington, D.C. so politics were local news for most of my childhood and I’ve been a news junkie ever since. I still remember watching Russert on Election Night 2000 pointing at the lowest of low-tech vote tabulators (that unforgettable white board) and seeing his accurate prediction that it was really all about Florida. Sunday mornings won’t be the same without him. Today’s Veracifier includes some of his best moments from almost two decades of Meet the Press.

Best of TiVo Video Downloads, June 10, 2008

Thursday, June 12th, 2008

[I’m a bit late in posting John’s list this week, sorry!]

In a week that saw the return of The Mole and the reinvention of Password (congrats for the originality, TV!), there was even more great stuff available through Video Downloads. Here’s the best of the best from last week:

  1. Super Deluxe turned to The Daily Show’s Rob Riggle for a look at the often-ignored casualty of novelty basketball exhibitions like the Harlem Globetrotters. Riggle, as coach of the Colonels, asks the question we’ve all been wondering for years: What kind of ref allows a tiny trampoline onto a basketball court? (Although we’ll have to wait to find out why the Globetrotters made a movie called The Harlem Globetrotters on Gilligan’s Island where they fought robots….)
  2. The New York Times‘ resident tech guru David Pogue reviewed three great voice-activated cell phone services on this week’s Circuits, including Goog-411, Cha-Cha, and Jott. All three are great additions to my already geeky Blackberry. Soon I won’t have to talk to real people at all!
  3. Speaking of socially awkward, this week’s Break.com “Best of 65” show included a clip of a young man attempting to teach his aunt to lock her back door…by popping out of a cabinet wearing a hockey mask and wielding a butcher knife. (Next week, motivation techniques requiring a chainsaw.) The best part of the clip though is watching his aunt attempting to climb over the railing of the deck to escape instead of using, I don’t know, the stairs. Maybe slasher movies have been more accurate than we give them credit for.
  4. Cali Lewis from GeekBrief.TV brought us the awesome news that Starbucks is now offering two hours of free WiFi service to their latte-drinking customers. This brings me one step closer to permanently relocating my cube within scone-throwing distance of a barista. Viva la free internets!
  5. And finally, The Onion’s headline explains it all: “New Wearable Feedbags Let Americans Eat More, Move Less.” Thanks, Onion. You just crushed the hope/dreams of some R&D scientist deep within the bowels of McDonald’s or Burger King.

TiVo announces partnership with CinemaNow for Disney and other movie downloads

Wednesday, May 28th, 2008

Hey folks, amongst all the hubbub for our Q1 results released today, we also announced a partnership with CinemaNow to deliver Disney movie rentals to your box via our Video Download service. (MegaZone has some additional coverage on this as well.)

We’ve been working hard with the CinemaNow folks to get this ready for you. Keep an eye on your Download TV, Movies, & Web Video menu (under TiVo Central -> Find Programs & Downloads); this new service will arrive later this year.

Between CinemaNow and Amazon Unbox, every major movie studio will be available on your TiVo-branded DVR.

Personally, my favorite classic Disney movie has to be The Jungle Book. I’ve been reading the book version to Sammy for a few weeks. At some point pretty soon, he’ll be old enough to watch the movie — now I know how I’ll get it to him.

Today is the last day to redeem TiVo Rewards points

Wednesday, May 28th, 2008

If you’ve been a participant in the TiVo Rewards program, today is the last day to redeem your points, so act quick — as of midnight Eastern time, the program will be completely over.

Variegated miscellany

Saturday, May 24th, 2008

Today I attended Jack and Andy’s fifth birthday party at Hoover park, and watched Bob get pelted by water balloons and shaving-cream-filled sponges by ten ecstatic kids. (How I escaped that fate, given I’m a co-godparent? Dunno! But I am oh so grateful.) Aunt Beth made two cakes, one a race car, and the other a chocolate volcano with lava made from melted orange lifesavers. Amazingly beautiful cakes.

* * *

While I was feting twins, Kimi took Sammy and Sophie to the Hiller Airplane Museum, which never gets old for Sammy.

Me: Sammy, what did you see at the airplane museum today?
Sammy: Airplanes.
Me: What kind of airplanes?
Sammy: Old airplanes. With wings!

* * *

Yesterday was Sophie’s eight month birthday. She babbles incessantly now, has the tiniest of teeth buds coming in, gives a smile to everyone, likes to wave somewhat erratically at people, and can roll over, but seems to show no interest in crawling. We’ve started the ferberizing to break her of her 3 a.m. feedings, and so far so good; she slept through the night for the last two nights.

* * *

Yesterday was also photo day at Sammy and Sophie’s school, and in addition, teachers’ lunch out for Sophie’s class. This semi-annual event asks the parents to donate their time and a little money for the teachers to get an escape, while parents come in during the lunch hour to watch the kids. There are eight kids in Sophie’s class, ranging from four months to almost a year old. For the noon to 1 shift where I helped out, we had five parents. When we first started our shift, the teachers had left us well-fed, happy, clean-diapered kids. Within about, oh, ten minutes, half of the kids were bawling, and most had dirty diapers. We parents just looked at each other and laughed. What a profoundly difficult job. The two teachers handle four infants each, with aplomb. We parents were having difficulty with less than two each. Things soon settled down though, and the hour ended up flying by.

* * *

While the photographers set up outside the school and we lined the kids up to have their individual and class photos taken, smoke and haze filled the sky from the nearby Santa Cruz mountains fire. Yesterday morning over 3,400 acres had burned, dozens of homes were destroyed, and the fire was less than 1% contained. Even though we were fifty miles away, kids rubbed their eyes and coughed; and the strange air reminded me of a smell from my childhood, in London: walking down the street in winter evenings, with seemingly every house having a fireplace with a blazing wood fire, smoke pouring out of chimneys, getting on your clothes.

Chim chimminee, chim chiminee, chim chim cheroo.

I was very glad to see the unexpected and unseasonable light rain today, giving the firefighters the break they needed to control the mountain blaze. The dull weather was not so much fun for five-year-olds attending a birthday party, but everything in life is a trade-off.

* * *

Earlier in the week, I caught Speed Racer and then snuck in to a showing of Prince Caspian. It took me about thirty minutes to catch on to Speed Racer’s vibe, but once I did, I loved it. I think this is a vastly underrated movie. The critical smackdown is somewhat intense; I guess most of the critics never watched the original cartoon, because I think the movie catches the goofy tone of the movie pretty much perfectly. And the visuals do not disappoint, exceeding even the hype.

Prince Caspian, on the other hand, is a dreadful bore, missing all spark of charm and whimsy of the first Narnia movie, laying the religious theme on over-thick, and really missing the point of the book (which I read probably twenty times before I was 12).

Speed Racer is over two hours but feels like 60 minutes. Prince Caspian is over two hours but feels like three or four.

* * *

Rob and I have been playing a new card game, Race for the Galaxy (which Steve and Larry introduced me to when they visited a couple of months ago). We play whenever we get a chance. I love this game. It’s a bit fiddly to learn, and the fact that you’re not directly interacting with your opponents takes a few plays before you understand how you can actually have a huge effect on your opponents’ play — but it’s such a short and intense game, I find myself even dreaming about it. Get this game!

* * *

Kimi gave me the new Flight of the Conchords CD for my birthday (among a lot of other CDs, thanks sweetie!). Although I loved the first season of the HBO show, I had thought some of the songs were hit or miss. But I was able to really listen to the lyrics (thanks to the iPhone making it easier for me to carry around music), and now I love all the songs. Buy this CD. Please mister, you won’t regret it.

* * *

There’s a friends-and-family deal at TiVo right now for a TiVo HD. If you’re a friend or family and want a new HD DVR, drop me an e-mail.

* * *

While I do aim to generate content, rather than pass along content from elsewhere, here’s a link. I have to say I applaud these two for their convictions and avocation.
* * *

Kimi: “Your blog is so random. No one likes all the content. No one!”

Guilty — variegated miscellany is what this is. I do tend to be all over the place. Everything’s connected, somehow. Just think though — there are half of the categories listed on the right not even touched by this post. But comments are what I like best, so let me know what you’d like to see more of, and less of.

Best of TiVo Video Downloads, May 19, 2008

Monday, May 19th, 2008

Summer is officially here, which means we should all be spending more time outside…but why would I do that when TV is on? In between last Thursday’s finale of The Office and whatever it is that’s happening on Battlestar Galactica, there are still plenty of great video downloads for you to be watching. Here’s what I enjoyed this week:

  1. Remember that scene in Network where the anchor, troubled by the content forced upon him, finally breaks down and screams at the camera that he’s mad as hell and not going to take it anymore? This isn’t that….Barely Political brings us a hilarious take on everyone’s favorite Fox News commentator losing his cool back in his early Inside Edition days. It’s almost as if he’s going to spontaneously combust right there on the set of his syndicated “news” magazine.
  2. Channel Frederator‘s ReFrederator went all VH1 on us last week with a pop-up version of “Superman in Mechanical Monsters.” With a mix of insightful commentary and a bit of Beavis & Butthead, I hope Channel Frederator tries this kind of thing again.
  3. If anyone knows of anything funnier than a guy dropping to the ground and flopping around like a salmon after asking his friends to shoot him with a taser from this week’s Break.com, please let me know.
  4. Pulp Secret‘s Summer Movie Spectacular was a great preview of all of the blockbusters based on comic books we have headed our way this summer. Alex, Justin, and Pete always have lots of say about the way some of my favorite characters are handled in comics, so it was great to hear their thoughts on these big screen adaptations.
  5. Last but not least, happy birthday, Indy Mogul! Today’s episode is a retrospective of some of the best moments from the past year of my favorite DIY film-making show (giant sandwich!) and includes a great joke about bees. What started as a single show (“Backyard FX”) has grown into three great shows a week with the addition of “Q & Erik” and “4 Minute Film School”. Even if you’re only shooting home movies of your family, Indy Mogul’s full of great tips to help you get the most from your camera.

Best of TiVo Video Downloads, May 11, 2008

Monday, May 12th, 2008

[John was out on vacation and involved with special projects for a few weeks, so it’s been a little while since we last had a “Best of” — but here’s the latest installment! –Stephen]

I watch it all so you don’t have to and here’s what I enjoyed this week.

  1. Week 33 of Dan Meth’s 39 week experiment on Channel Frederator brings us a re-imagining of the first 32 weeks in glorious 8-bit. Insane? Yes. But Hilarious? Most definitely.
  2. John McCain is calling you out, sissy-boy! This week The Onion had an important report about McCain’s plan to control government spending by eliminating the need for a Secret Service detail during his presidency. What will the Treasury Department do with all that extra money and manpower?
  3. Speaking of politics, during last Tuesday’s CNN primary coverage, things got a little heated between some of the panelists. Thursday’s Veracifier gives the Sportscenter treatment to the best political team on television.
  4. It all began with one red paper clip….and ended with a book. Tuesday’s Rocketboom gave us an interview with Kyle MacDonald, the man who just kept trading up.
  5. Remember when the Wachowski brothers’ name stood for crazy effects and an awesome story? Anyone? Well, that first Matrix movie was awesome, but apparently their newest project, “Speed Racer,” (with Jack from “Lost” as Racer X?) misses the mark. Luckily, The New York Times is here to steer us clear of this one.

Not using Web Season Pass? You should be! This week I also enjoyed these shows using TiVo’s Web Season Pass:

  • Lindsey Campbell was arrested for civil disobedience following the Sean Bell verdict in New York and covered it all on MobLogic.tv (http://www.moblogic.tv/)
  • The blockbuster season kicked off with reviews of “Iron Man” (awesome) and “Grand Theft Auto IV” (more awesome) from the guys on The Totally Rad Show (http://revision3.com/trs/shuttlecock/)
  • No idea what to make for dinner tonight? Left with crazy ingredients in the cabinet that don’t go together? Sounds like a job for Stump the Chef (http://onnetworks.com/videos/stump-the-chef/)

Enjoy!

John

On Network’s Zen Living comes to TiVo Video Downloads

Saturday, May 10th, 2008

This week, we added a new channel to our growing lineup of free TiVo Video Downloads: Zen Living, from On Networks.

Zen Living is all about incorporating a balanced lifestyle through the connection of food, exercise, spirituality, and medicine, blending old world philosophies with the convenience of contemporary advances to improve well-being.

The first episode, “Cooking a Macrobiotic Meal,” explored how to make fried tofu with an organic miso salad and a pear granola dessert; the current episode, “Asian Supermarket,” walks you through what may some unfamiliar aisles.

To download these episodes or to subscribe, visit the Zen Living page on TiVo Central Online, or on your broadband-connected TiVo DVR, visit TiVo Central -> Find Programs & Downloads -> Download TV, Movies, & Web Video -> Browse Other Videos -> All -> Zen Living.

New episodes will make their way to your DVR every Monday.

We’ll have four more new channels from On Networks in the next few weeks. Please let us know what you think!

[Zen Living logo]

Congrats to Webby Award-Winning TiVo Video Download Channels!

Tuesday, May 6th, 2008

The Webby Award winners (Video category) were announced this morning. Congrats go to Fast Lane Daily for picking up a People’s Voice award in the Sports category, and Onion News Network for winning several awards, including a Best Writing Webby and Comedy: Individual Short or Episode.

(Congrats also to nominees David Pogue of the New York Times, Barely Political, ThreadBanger and EPIC-FU!)

To subscribe to any of these for your broadband-enabled TiVo DVR, head over to the TiVoCast page, or visit TiVo Central -> Find Programs & Downloads -> Download TV, Movies, & Web Video -> Browse Other Videos -> All

Best of TiVo Video Downloads: April 2, 2008

Wednesday, April 2nd, 2008

This week’s videos had everything from a practical joke that had me fooled for days to another reason to argue with my sister on the phone about conspiracy theories. Here’s a sample of the things I enjoyed watching in the past week:

  1. Indy Mogul tricked me into caring…and that’s just plain wrong. Starting with last week’s Q & Erik, Indy Mogul’s been perpetrating the myth that their host, Erik Beck, injured his eye while making the death ray for this Monday’s “Backyard FX”. I was telling people all about it, making them watch the “footage” of the injury, and generally feeling bad for the guy…until yesterday…when they revealed that the whole thing was a hoax. Well played, Indy Mogul, well played.
  2. Have you ever thought about modding your DS, Playstation controller, or iPhone? If not, check out the awesome skins on last week’s DL.TV (there’s even a mugshot of Mario and Lugi that’s just. plain. awesome.)
  3. Should she stay or should she go? That was the question on everyone’s mind this weekend on the Sunday morning talk shows. As always, Veracifier and TMPtv give us a snappy recap of the topic in their Sunday Show recap.
    But wanna know how they’re capturing all that footage? Check out the behind-the-scenes blooper reel from April Fools’ Day (with a special appearance by a stack of Series 3 TiVo DVRs on the desk behind Josh).
  4. Am I conspiracy nut? No. Is there a picture of me on the phone with my sister while standing on the grassy knoll in Dallas? Yes. The Onion took a firm jab at all of the “truthers” out there with yesterday’s report on a new 9/11 conspiracy book.
  5. The Professor Brothers (from Super Deluxe) examine the world of the future. One word: BEARSTRONAUTS!

Keep on Downloading!

John T.

The Gourmet Channel comes to TiVo Video Downloads!

Wednesday, April 2nd, 2008

We’ve added Gourmet Magazine as a new partner to TiVo’s Video Downloads today. Each Tuesday, a new episode from The Gourmet Channel will cover cooking, travel (through their partnership with National Geographic) and promotions.

(And by the way, my wife and I think subscriptions to Gourmet Magazine make a great gift.)

To kick things off, there are five episodes you can download:

  • Sara’s Weeknight Meals
  • Partners in Exploration
  • Exploring Galapagos
  • The Ingredient: Sake Lees (aka sake kasu)
  • The Ingredient: White Asparagus

To get your Season Pass to The Gourmet Channel, you can either visit TiVo Central Online, or on your Series2 or Series3 broadband-connected DVR, head to TiVo Central -> Find Programs -> Download TV, Movies & Web Video -> Browse Other Video -> All -> The Gourmet Channel.

Bon appetit!

[Gourmet Logo]

Upcoming YouTube on TiVo feature

Tuesday, April 1st, 2008

We already announced (back on March 12) that TiVo will support playing YouTube videos through your TiVo Series3 or HD DVR.

At a dev. meeting just now, I pushed for a parental controls feature that I’d like to make sure is a P1, one which many of our customers have requested: Under no circumstances will the app allow playback of this video. (Warning: Don’t click that link, you already know what it is.)

So, rest easy, citizens of the world. The price of freedom is eternal vigilance, and smart blocking of certain content.

Blue Mooooon x 10

Friday, March 28th, 2008

This morning, the kids and I had a leisurely breakfast before I took them to pre-school. No rushing or hurrying. Then I stopped in at a local coffee store and read just about every page of today’s paper — something I haven’t done in months. Right now I’m relaxing at home and will probably play some video games. Later today, Kimi and I will go and check out mini-vans.

Slacker much? It’s Friday! Why aren’t I working?

Today is the National TiVo Holiday known as “Blue Moon,” which I’ve written about in some detail before. I’ve now been at TiVo for nine years (nearly a quarter of my life), and this is my tenth Blue Moon. There were 90 employees when I started, and 15 of those 90 (one in six) are still at TiVo after nine years. I think that’s impressive, and speaks to what a great company TiVo is to work for.

Pony’s got a post up at the TiVo Community forum with his version of the story.

In other news, Sophie is now six months old, and we just started her on solid food this week. She didn’t seem to care for it, actually. But she’s doing well, and has started sleeping through the night every now and then, just to taunt us by showing us that she can do it, if and only if she wants to. On the plus side, I’ve managed to see some amazing sunrises.

Sammy, now two-and-a-half, has taken to saying, “I don’t know” when I ask him questions about things he knows very well. He’s also in the “what’s that?” phase, pointing at things he fully understands (like grass and trees) just to get me to talk; I think he’s reveling in the ability to be able to hold a conversation and make me answer questions.

When I picked him up from school yesterday, he told me he wanted to eat out. What do you want to eat, Sammy? “Shushi.” He’s on a sushi kick. His favorites are California roll, shrimp tempura, tuna, and hamachi. He also devours the pickled ginger.

Last Friday, while Kimi went to spend time with John and Yvonne and newborn Logan at the hospital, I took Sammy and Sophie to sushi at the local place near Safeway, which I picked because it’s usually empty. Instead it was crowded (even some TiVo co-workers), and Sammy now loves to point to things (like artwork or calligraphy) and say, “That’s Japanese!”

To celebrate Blue Moon and a small raise, all of us went to Sono Sushi (sushi boats) on Castro last night. For once Sammy seemed a bit more interested in the lollipops on the sushi boats than the actual sushi, but he still devoured some raw fish and declared it to be his favorite. I love this kid. He’s definitely his father’s son.

I know I owe some pictures. I have some free time today, so watch for them later…

Best of TiVoCast: March 26, 2008

Wednesday, March 26th, 2008

Between watching my NCAA bracket get destroyed by a co-worker in the first round and working to add more and more channels to the newly-released Web Season Pass feature, what was I watching this week?

  1. Even though I love Brit-Brit (shout out for your appearance on “How I Met Your Mother” this week), I still got a big laugh from this week’s episode of Super Deluxe Sings.
  2. As I’ve said before, I’m a huge gaming nerd but I also love the environment. Why not combine the best of both worlds? ViroPOP helps me with a list of environmentally-conscious video games.
  3. Not since Joe Theismann got his leg broken by LT have I seen anything that made me shudder like last week’s “Most Awesome Broken Bones” from Break.com. And as I heard in a meeting today, “What was the escalator guy trying to do?” Judge for yourself.
  4. If you like animation, you need only read these two words: Chuck Jones. This week’s “Refrederator” episode of Channel Frederator brings us a classic Bugs Bunny cartoon that includes all my favorite Looney Tunes gags (including characters imagining that other characters are talking food).
  5. Do you like cake? How about liquor? What if the two could be combined? Wonder no more! Mark Bittman brings together apple, cake and “any liquor you’d actually drink” into a dessert that makes me want to bake immediately on this week’s The Minimalist from The New York Times.

Enjoy!

–John