Media Streaming? Tell him he’s dreaming!

Old school VHSDLNA and the myth of interoperability

Ok, so the title doesn’t sound particularly positive, and the truth is, experiences will no doubt vary wildly. All the disclaimers aside though, I’m writing to have a good old-fashioned whinge. I recently upgraded my home media system to include a networked home theatre amplifier, media player software on my smartphone, and a mac mini doing full-time duty as a media server.

The glue that’s meant to bind all this technology together is called DLNA, which is short for “Digital Living Network Alliance”.

DLNA essentially means that all these devices and software can talk to each other, using a set of instructions that they’re all supposed to understand.

In an ideal world, it’s meant to go something like this: Read the rest of this entry →


05 2012

Is Rdio Worth Subscribing to?

RdioWhile the USA and the UK have been swanning it up with music subscription services like Spotify, Pandora and Mog, we Australians have lived it up with iTunes and record stores. We’ve been teased with the promise of all you can eat music for a monthly subscription and that’s the way it still stands except for one of the big overseas players. Rdio. I’ve had a peak and, for the most part, I like what I hear. Read the rest of this entry →


03 2012

Nike+ SportsWatch – Brilliantly Flawed

Nike+ SportsWatchFor the spontaneous among us, the Nike+ SportsWatch featuring TomTom technology is the proverbial ducks nether regions. As your everyday watch it makes for a classy, if not a little garish, talking point – but don the runners and it transforms into the easiest to use GPS run tracker on the market. Featuring only three buttons, it’s perfect for simpletons like me. For the rest of you it’s just about everything you’d need for a day on the trails. Or is it? Read the rest of this entry →


03 2012

Poor Mobile Reception, Animals and Number Two’s.

Hot on the heels of Mr Whale’s recent frustrations with mobile network reception, I thought I’d write in to share my own experiences. You see, like our esteemed tech-savvy cetacean, I’ve been experiencing my own unenviable set of problems, chiefly revolving around, to put it bluntly, rubbish reception!

Put simply, I’ve been suffering at the hands (or ears, as the case may be) of gradually deteriorating call quality since I signed up with my previous carrier, who shall remain nameless. Suffice to say, ‘Yes’, they’re fond of using animals in their TV advertisements…

So after much to-ing and fro-ing, we decided enough was enough, it’s time to change carriers. The inevitable wrangling over contract exit fees ensued, and of course, like so many others, we ended up knocking on the doors of our local regulator, the Telecommunications Industry Ombudsman. Seemingly the posturing was enough, because our exit fees were reduced to a token charge to pay out the phones, and we were happy with that.

We’ve since migrated to a carrier widely reputed to have far superior signal coverage and I must admit, I did so with some trepidation. Not wanting to swap rubbish for garbage, I was understandably nervous about making the transition. Read the rest of this entry →


02 2012

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