Daily Archives:October 31st, 2004

More radio news

[Original Link]

Following my last entry about the absence of the BBC this morning, Dave pointed me at this site. There was a fire at the Peterborough transmitter last night, apparently, and the mast collapsed, and great, I imagine, was the fall of it.

Picture of mast
(Click image for more photos)

It’ll take them a while to get that back up.

That site has some interesting links, actually. I like Frequncy Finder, which will tell any UK readers about their local stations and where they’re coming from, or alternatively, tell you about a particular frequency and how it’s used around the country.

Update: This is what that mast looks like now, apparently:

The iPod Powerpoint?

I wonder how many people have realised that the iPod Photo could be a great way to carry Powerpoint-style presentations around? Or Keynote presentations, I should probably say. The video-out connectors would plug happily into most projectors. It’ll be interesting to see what the quality of the TV output is like; it may be rather low resolution for presentations involving much text or many diagrams.

Apple Event and iPod Photo

[Original Link]

Just watched the Quicktime feed of Steve Jobs doing the iPod Photo launch, with the aid of U2. I have to take my hat off to Apple – I’m biased by my enthusiasm for their technology, but even without that I can think of few companies with their marketing and branding skills.

I’ve sat through plenty of roadshows and product launches in my life, and, in general, I detest them. So why would I voluntarily give up an hour of my weekend to watch a CEO telling me about his latest product? If you need to ask that, I suggest you watch one. This latest isn’t their slickest, and Steve Jobs, though on good form, is perhaps a little below his normal par, which is understandable after his recent major surgery. But there’s still no other company that comes close.

Get a good connection, expand your Quicktime window to a good size, sit back and enjoy. And remember that it’s Apple technology that you’re using to view the stream as well….

Cambridge Monopoly

[Original Link] The prefect Christmas present for all those Silicon Fen millionaires?

The world is changing

I woke this morning to find a situation almost unknown in (my) living memory. I turned on the radio, as is my wont, to listen to BBC Radio 4, and it wasn’t there! Nor were any of the other national BBC stations. All our local transmitters are offline, which must have left hundreds of thousands of people, at least, offline. The Beeb don’t seem to be doing a good job telling people about it – it’s not obvious anywhere on the web site, for example.

Fortunately, the BBC website is in all other respects excellent – they have all of their content on line, including the live broadcast streams. And ‘wireless’ is a term we now use more about in-house networking than national networking. So I can simply take my laptop anywhere in the house instead of the radio. (And while listening, I could IM my friend Dave, who lives an hour’s drive away, to find out that his radio was dead too).

This is, to a large extent, the future of radio, though the device won’t always look like a laptop.

Update, 20 mins later: I spoke too soon. The BBC website is now down as well, no doubt swamped by the number of people trying to find out what’s happened! Perhaps there’s something to be said for broadcast technologies after all!

Another update: Actually, I think it was the DNS rather than the website which had a problem – I managed to get the site back almost immediately by finding an IP address for www.bbc.co.uk and putting it in my /etc/hosts, though this wasn’t needed for long. The main thing is that the online BBC came back before the broadcast version.

© Copyright Quentin Stafford-Fraser