Forgot your password?
typodupeerror
Television Media

TiVo to Aim for PC Desktop 133

Posted by CowboyNeal
from the pee-vee-arr dept.
Dave writes "Ars Technica has reported on TiVo's fourth quarter earnings call, and I was interested to see that the company is looking at providing some kind of desktop service for computers." The details are pretty sparse, so it'll be intriguing to see what they've got planned.
This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

TiVo to Aim for PC Desktop

Comments Filter:
  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday March 10, 2005 @11:27PM (#11906876)
    TiVo to Aim for PC Desktop

    Not if I aim it out the window first.
    • Why? (Score:4, Insightful)

      by EmbeddedJanitor (597831) on Thursday March 10, 2005 @11:32PM (#11906910)
      I don't use a TiVo, but my understanding is that you use this machine to record stuff for playback when you have the time to relax. Do you really want to go relax in front of a desktop PC?
      • Re:Why? (Score:3, Funny)

        by tmleafsar (866698) *
        No different than most people's average day at the office. ;-)
      • 3 Words (Score:4, Insightful)

        by jimmyCarter (56088) on Thursday March 10, 2005 @11:45PM (#11906995) Journal
        Burn to DVD
        • Re:3 Words (Score:2, Informative)

          by wo1verin3 (473094)
          You already can, they offer Tivo series 2 users a 15 day trial of Sonic MyDVD. If you want to keep burning the programs to DVD however you do have to buy the program from Sonic.
        • Re:3 Words (Score:1, Informative)

          by Anonymous Coward
          I'm sorry, but analog capture quality from poor cable? It's not even worth the price of the DVD-R it's going to be getting burned onto. Even with a good capture card and all, the picture is WAY sub-par. Analog capturing was cool stuff 5 years ago.
        • or two words and an acronym
      • Re:Why? (Score:1, Funny)

        by Anonymous Coward
        Do you really want to go relax in front of a desktop PC?
        I "relax" in front of a desktop PC 3-4 times a day.
      • Re:Why? (Score:3, Funny)

        by westlake (615356)
        Do you really want to go relax in front of a desktop PC?

        So what are you doing here?

      • by Xoro (201854)

        Real programmers have sixteen fingers.

        Count hex using four fingers instead -- it has the advantage of showing you the bitmask as well.

        And yes, I relax in front of my desktop PC. I don't even own a tv.

        • I don't even own a tv.

          -- Insert obligatory The Onion reference here. --
        • Unless you can diferentiate 16 different positions with each finger, fingers don't count hex. fingers are primarily binary - maybe you could do trinary if you are real good, but it's beyond my skill.

          I was taught to count on my fingers on a modifed system - the four fingers count up to 4 (right hand) and the thumb is the binary switch between 0-4 and 5-9. Same with left hand for the 10's place and you can count up to 99 with little practice.

          You are confusing the number of bits with the highest value able t
      • Re:Why? (Score:2, Interesting)

        by kabz (770151)
        Well, one of my boxes, and it's 17" panel are about to migrate to my coffee table.

        This setup runs pchdtvr, which spools OTA HDTV so I can record any network shows I want and watch them in glorious 10 MByte sec quality high def whenever I want.

        A 17" panel about 4 feet away is not far off the same effect as a 27" TV 8 feet away. And in this case, the picture is wayyyyyy better than cable or satellite, unless you already have high def.

        A 200 Gig drive holds about 20 hours which should be plenty for as much T
      • My local cable (Cox) offers a DVR with computer hook ups so you can move from the DVR to the computer if you want to keep something. And the DVR isn't crippled like the TiVo, i.e. I can still fast forward through the comercials. The only problem is the DVR/Digital cable box is a $4.95 a month rental. Although I bet a lot of people are also paying that much or more for digitial cable box and Tivo.

        My local cable company has basically said "Heres what you want, we won't ask what you use it for" so none of th
        • Re:Why? (Score:3, Informative)

          by dreamt (14798)
          crippled like the TiVo, i.e. I can still fast forward through the comercials.

          Huh? Who ever said you can't fast forward through commercials with anythign from Tivo? I can easily fast forward (rewind, or whatever) using Tivo, and TivoToGo.
      • >>I don't use a TiVo, but my understanding is that you use this machine to record stuff for playback when you have the time to relax. Do you really want to go relax in front of a desktop PC? MSFT thinks you do. Thus the "Media Center PC".
      • Well, my PC's 17" monitor is bigger than my TV, so yes, I would.
  • Wait... (Score:2, Funny)

    by Yeshua (93307)

    Don't desktops generally have something like that available called a spam filter?

  • by Prophetic_Truth (822032) on Thursday March 10, 2005 @11:27PM (#11906880)
    So its like a pay BT site?
  • by fredistheking (464407) on Thursday March 10, 2005 @11:28PM (#11906881)
    This could help them to overcome the big advantage that the cable and satellite companies have going for them.
    • ...Cable has an advantage?
      • Cable's big advantage is that (for now) you need to use their boxes to record HD and premium channels. While TiVo's IR blaster controlling the cable box works fine, it's not an ideal solution. TiVo won't be coming out with a CableCard 2.0 HD box until 2006 IIRC. I'll upgrade my current unit to that one when it comes out, if I don't get fed up and build a MythTV box first.
      • ...Cable has an advantage?

        I guess Tivo has an advantage if its having Linux inside of it makes you feel that much better, but as for me and my Motorola HDDVR provided from my cable company, the only possible feature that the Tivo has over my box is maybe the 30 sec skip function. But my box has 3 fast forward speeds, and accounts for reaction time when hitting play and its trivial to skip commercials. Even those that are not exactly 30 seconds long.
    • Yeah, Dish Network and DirecTV have both offered free DVRs to new customers and a lot of cable companies do it too. This makes it pretty difficult for a company like TiVo to offer a program listing service for $12.95 a month when the Dish and DirecTV DVRs don't require any additional subscription fee. This brings up the argument that TiVo has many patented features that the other DVRs do not, but when you ask the average person what they need out of their DVR they will tell you "I need to record TV and that
      • I mean 'TiVo' is a damn verb now. I never hear anyone say "Hey man, did you DVR the new episode?". Its usually "Hey man, did you TiVo the new episode?"

        This is called trademark dilution, and it's a very bad thing in the long run. If people see your name as a generic word for doing whatever it is your product does, it accelerates feelings that other products in that category are interchangeable with yours, causing a loss of brand distinction. See also: Xerox, Kleenex, aspirin, cellophane, and elevator, am
      • No monthly fees for satellite PVRs might be nice, but that's not my thing (and I had to pay 350$ cdn for mine). My sat PVR records shows with no quality loss whatsoever, including 5.1 audio if it's there. Even if Tivo didn't have monthly fees, there's no way I'd trade my sat PVR for a Tivo. Analog captures just don't look good enough (besides that cable here is really poor compared to sat quality in the first place, and sat has a better lineup and better prices).
        • South of the shared border, you can use a DirecTV receiver with dual tuners which records the raw signal to hard drive. There are people on your side who use them. The risk, so I'm told, is your cops keep an eye out for the dishes. There are some very nice dish covers but I'm not sure spheres to cover 18" dishes exist.

          DTiVos run around $50-$100 each. A USB2 NIC should run around $20 and you can always drop in a large hard drive if you want.

          Your PVR records the actual data stream or is there an analog port
  • Currently I own this nice piece of kit.. a Nebular electronics digitv PCI card..

    Will TiVo bring (Tivo) to our desktops in the form of a PCI card too? If that's the case, I'm sure many will have case to cream their pants!
  • Why would you? (Score:4, Informative)

    by Manip (656104) on Thursday March 10, 2005 @11:33PM (#11906915)
    Tivo costs £10 per month to get guide information... Or you could buy Microsoft Media Centre edition, costs you £89 up front but you get the guide information for free forever plus you can hack it (using any x86 tools).
    • Re:Why would you? (Score:5, Informative)

      by FredThompson (183335) <fredthompson@nOSpAm.mindspring.com> on Thursday March 10, 2005 @11:39PM (#11906947)
      Or...you could use free applications and not buy Microsoft Media Center. Duh!

      TiVo's load balancing, season passes, key phrase searches, etc. kick the snot out of anything else. Quite a bit of what makes it so nice is patented.

      If you haven't used one, you don't have the experience to know you don't know what you don't know.
      • Re:Why would you? (Score:1, Informative)

        by Anonymous Coward
        Speaking of patents, posted today:

        EchoStar shares fall on TiVo suit ruling [businessweek.com]

        a federal court denied motions by the nation's second-largest satellite television provider to dismiss patent infringement claims by digital video recording company TiVo Inc. [...]

        TiVo has alleged that EchoStar and certain units are violating a key TiVo patent issued in May 2001, known as the "time warp" patent.

        I wonder if DirecTV's and Microsoft's partnership with TiVo protects them.

      • Re:Why would you? (Score:5, Informative)

        by RzUpAnmsCwrds (262647) on Friday March 11, 2005 @01:14AM (#11907406)
        "If you haven't used one, you don't have the experience to know you don't know what you don't know."

        I've used TiVo for over four years now, both standalone and the combo DirecTV/TiVo units.

        I can assure you that Microsoft MCE is every bit as good as TiVo. To-do-list, recording history, season passes (with first-run-only options, the same 31-day rule, automatic adjustment to changing schedules, etc.), and most of the other TiVo featureset is present.

        The only things I can think of that TiVo has over MCE is:

        - WishLists. MCE kind of has them with keyword searching, but TiVo does a much better job.

        - Suggestions. I never used them, but only TiVo has them.

        But:

        - MCE has better conflict resolution. The interface is clearer. The to-do-list shows, at a glance, which shows "lose out" in a conflict.

        - MCE is faster. Even the Series 2 units are far too slow. Particularly when you upgrade the disk space. My 300GB MCE box is still quite nippy.

        - MCE has a better skip back / skip forward feature. It's far faster, which actually makes it useful - unlike the :30 hack on TiVo.

        - MCE handles failure better. If a show is interrupted during recording, MCE will automatically schedule a later showing if it's available and doesn't cause a conflict. This happens even if the recording was one-shot.

        - MCE softpads automatically, and unlike TiVo's padding, softpadding doesn't create conflicts.

        - MCE's interface is better. You can see the current program in most of the menus, and there is a clearly defined "back" button with unlimited history.

        Try MCE out before you go crapping all over it. You may be surprised.
        • Re:Why would you? (Score:5, Interesting)

          by FredThompson (183335) <fredthompson@nOSpAm.mindspring.com> on Friday March 11, 2005 @02:42AM (#11907777)
          "MCE has better conflict resolution. The interface is clearer."

          Aples and oranges? Clearer...how? There's only so much information which can fit on a TV screen. If you don't like the appearance created by the TiVo, load a custom skin.

          "The to-do-list shows, at a glance, which shows "lose out" in a conflict."

          Same issue. There's only so much text which will fit on a TV display. Displaying conflicts on a TV very quickly becomes overwhelmingly cumbersome.

          If you want to do it via PC, use one of the flavors of DailyMail. DailyMail will let you manually tweak conflict resolution via email. If you want to do mass deletions, reorganize season passes, etc., use TivoWebPlus modules. It would be ludicrous to compare a handheld remote system to a PC interface.

          "- MCE is faster. Even the Series 2 units are far too slow. Particularly when you upgrade the disk space. My 300GB MCE box is still quite nippy."

          Too slow for what? I have 3 DTiVos, each has 2 160G drives and the only time I see any speed issues are when 2 recordings are being made on a DTiVo, a stream is being extracted across the NIC and I'm trying to do something data9intensive like reorganize season passes. Use TWP to do mass jobs or stream to a PC, no biggie.

          "- MCE has a better skip back / skip forward feature. It's far faster, which actually makes it useful - unlike the :30 hack on TiVo."

          It takes less than 2 minutes to edit all the ads from a 1-hour recording after extracting to my PC. Any remote control method of skipping around is going to take longer than that.

          You know you can push the left or right-facing triangle keys on a TiVo remote more than once, don't you?

          "- MCE handles failure better."

          Uh...no. MCE runs on Windoze which is far less stable than the Linux running on a TiVo.

          " If a show is interrupted during recording, MCE will automatically schedule a later showing if it's available and doesn't cause a conflict. This happens even if the recording was one-shot."

          Let's unpack that sentence.

          The first part describes a TiVo season pass or wishlist for which you've enbled the options to record more than one showing. That's been in TiVo software from the beginning.

          The second part of your statement is impossible in linear time. If a show is on once and your recorder fails, be it MCE, Myth, TiVo, DVDR, VCR, whatever, it is impossible to recover the signal which is no longer available.

          "- MCE softpads automatically, and unlike TiVo's padding, softpadding doesn't create conflicts."

          Did you really think that as you typed? It is impossible for any tuner to record more than one channel at a time. Padding extends the recording of a channel beyond the match in the schedule data. MCE most certainly is NOT capable of somehow recording multiple channels per tuner concurrently, nor can it record linearly temporal broadcasts in a non-linear manner.

          "- MCE's interface is better. You can see the current program in most of the menus,"

          Do you mean video overlay? It's not that difficult to inhibit playback of the looping backgrounds on a TiVo. That's been available for more than a year.

          " and there is a clearly defined "back" button with unlimited history."

          Why would that be useful? At some point, it's more efficient to re-enter from a top-level menu. If you're trying to do something which is inherently awkward with a remote control, use one of the web interfaces.

          "Try MCE out before you go crapping all over it. You may be surprised."

          I might be pleasantly surprised by a few interface aspects but it's not something I'd chose. The more non-critical functionality packed into what is essentially a timed recorder, the greater the chance that recorder will fail its primary function. TiVos run Linux and are stable unless you're using a primitive hack to disable encryption. Mine have been running for more than a year, in one case 3 years, without reboots except when there were power outages. The only thing which I would find to be a major advantage would be if the TiVos suported wireless keyboards so searching by show name could be done quicker.
          • What you have done with your TiVo sounds great. My guess is you have a good deal of free time (or had at one point) to get your system running.

            Me? I've found that a couple of hours of searching for those types of hacks for the box usually ends in a bunch of broken links and just enough information and acronyms to give up on hacks. You see, that's the problem with TiVo - especially DTiVo. Everything cool requires a serious hack, and dealing with people who would rather hack than teach. Not that I blame the
          • The second part of your statement is impossible in linear time. If a show is on once and your recorder fails, be it MCE, Myth, TiVo, DVDR, VCR, whatever, it is impossible to recover the signal which is no longer available.

            I think the original poster was referring to the fact that if you tell MCE to record only a single episode of a show which is on at a particular time, and it fails to do so, it will try to record a later showing of the same episode. Of course this is of limited usefulness, but it doesn

          • Re:Why would you? (Score:1, Informative)

            by Anonymous Coward
            Oh dear, you've obviously a big fan of TiVo, but you really should have read the original more closely. The previous poster was just explaining some features of MCE they preferred over TiVo, they didn't really attempt to criticise the TiVo but you reply by attempting to rip them apart. To my mind though you really did not listen to the points being made:

            "The to-do-list shows, at a glance, which shows "lose out" in a conflict."

            You complain there's only so much information that fits on a screen. How do y
          • Hi, thanks for your input. I haven't used TiVo, but I do have MCE, so maybe I can clarify a few things.

            " If a show is interrupted during recording, MCE will automatically schedule a later showing if it's available and doesn't cause a conflict. This happens even if the recording was one-shot."

            Let's unpack that sentence.

            The first part describes a TiVo season pass or wishlist for which you've enbled the options to record more than one showing. That's been in TiVo software from the beginning.

            The second par
          • Too slow for what? I have 3 DTiVos, each has 2 160G drives and the only time I see any speed issues are when 2 recordings are being made on a DTiVo, a stream is being extracted across the NIC and I'm trying to do something data9intensive like reorganize season passes.

            I own a DTivo and the thing was practially grinding to a halt a few weeks ago on the original hardware. I added a 120GB drive and this weekend I'll be ripping everything out to run diagnostics since it is now actually dropping video on recor
        • Re:Why would you? (Score:2, Interesting)

          by Kuj0317 (856656)
          MCE is the biggest piece of bloatware. Despite the requirements of having a tv tuner that has hardware encoding, it can still bring an extremely powerful system to its knees. I dont know in what format it holds its program guide data, but however it does, it will kill any system with less than 512 megs of ram. And somehow this is a good piece of software? To top this all off, it will allow you to watch TV on your PC, not something all that revolutionary, or something that other (windows) software doesnt
          • You guys are completely cluless. 1. You hook up your PC to TV using TV-out, you dumbass, who said you use PC monitor? That's same thing with TIVO, and MCE still has better interface. Get a clue, get a head, and also you will need brain in it. 2. Extremely Powerful system to it's knees! I must either have the powerful system in the world which is AMD Athlon XP 1700+, nVidia GF4 TI4400 (MX would do) and 512MB PC2100 ram. Whoa, I didn't know my PC was better than "extremely powerful system" that is taken to
          • the system resource usage on mce are dependent on the video card and tv tuner card being used. I never had more than 12-15% of cpu utilization running media center. I noticed that nobody mentioned the fact that Tivo does not support codecs(real, quicktime, Divx, Xvid, etc). I can watch an HD xvid rip of Lost in full 16x9 720p, dolby 5.1. The closest thing tivo can do is recording a hd stream, and the hd tivo is about 1000USD right now and only certain satellite providers have hd tivos availible. Can ti
        • Other TiVo Advantages:

          Cost: With MCE, you're either forced to pay a premium ($1,000?) for a complete system or pay a preimum to buy your own quiet case and video card fans, a quiet power supply and a home theater form factor case.

          Integration: TiVo is a home theater component. It's quiet and fits perfectly into a rack of home theater gear. With MCE, or you've got to live with a big, loud PC in your living room or pay a big premium for something that looks like it belongs with your other gear.

          Patch
      • If you haven't used one, you don't have the experience to know you don't know what you don't know.

        Rumsfeld? Is that You?

  • It already exists! (Score:5, Informative)

    by TanRanger (758834) on Thursday March 10, 2005 @11:40PM (#11906952)
    Long time TiVo competitor, ReplayTV, has had a PC interface for some time now by means of an open source JAVA program called DVArchive. With it, user's of LAN enabled ReplayTV's can stream recorded shows onto their PC's. DVArchive can even act as a virtual ReplayTV, serving up shows for all the real ones in the house. If this is what TiVo has planned, it sounds like they are playing catch-up.
    • And if ReplayTV only had a decent userbase this might mean something. ;)
    • Small correction, as far as I know DVArchive isn't open source. I wish it was, because I'm using an older version of it due to incompatibilities with recent versions of java that I'm assuming would be pretty easy to iron out if the source code to the current version was there. It's a fairly small itch though, as all the functionality I need is in 3.0 anyway. Besides that small point, I agree that DVArchive is a pretty great piece of software. In fact, it's one of the reasons I went with ReplayTV over tivo.
    • This has existed in the TiVo realm for quite a long time. The real issue isn't capability, it's legality. Bottom line, ReplayTV violated the law with that software. It's kind of irrlevant, anyhow. All you'd need to do to stream is extract the MPEG2 data and run something like VideoLAN on a PC. It's not a requirement. You could stream from a TiVo to another TiVo if you want. The advantage to streaming from a PC is the reduced system demands on a DVR, regardless of hardware type.
      • How is it a violation of the law to allow for reasonably limited fair use and personal copying?

        I fail to see how "I can record shows using my VCR" is any less legitimate than "I can record shows using my VCR and transfer them to my PC, then delete them from my VCR." timeshifting is timeshifting, no?
        • The timeshifting personal use provisions of the law don't include networked distribution of content to other people. ReplayTV actively encouraged and provided a means to obtain and distribute content illegaly.
  • for this to actually work for Joe "i own a dell" Enduser, it would more then likely have to have a USB interface....and frankly, USB capture cards are way system intensive and typically crap... besides, why would any one who has have a brain just not use myth TV, or even M$ media center edition? unless its jsut a way to interface you curent TIVO box with your pc, like say for archiving shows and keeping the TIVO drive clear.......i have a feeling this may just not work
    • If he owns a Dell that *works*, he has some expertise, if only from reattaching all the piecs that fall off . . .

      hawk, delled twice by the university
  • by Anonymous Coward
    I mean they are great for plowing through a whole bunch of information in powerful ways. But what is there about PVR's that can utilize my desktop/laptop/pda?

    I have a TV and a place to watch it(recliner), I have a desk and a computer to do information processing... How can I use these to best advantage?

    • The approach I've used is go to IRC groups that specialize in TV-related bittorents. Grab the shows I want to watch and burn them to CD. I was suprised to find out a while back that my consumer-oriented DVD player hooked up to my TV could recognize CDs. So simply by burning the program in the appropriate format, I could plop it in the DVD player in the living room and watch a fairly decent quality show.
      • The approach I've used is go to IRC groups that specialize in TV-related bittorents. Grab the shows I want to watch and burn them to CD. I was suprised to find out a while back that my consumer-oriented DVD player hooked up to my TV could recognize CDs. So simply by burning the program in the appropriate format, I could plop it in the DVD player in the living room and watch a fairly decent quality show.

        What video format do you use for those files on the CDs? Is that an xVid? VCD? I think more commercial D

    • by Anonymous Coward
      Here's the real question: why don't people have recliners at their desks?!?
    • Think 'WebTV' with broadband capability. I don't remember if they got bought by Microsoft, or what, but WebTV dropped the ball on this a couple of years ago and it's still sitting there waiting to be picked up. Frankly, there are still lots of people out there who would use something like this, but don't want to dedicate a portion of their house to a desk/computer setup and/or don't want to pay over $300 total.
  • Probably (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Jozer99 (693146) on Thursday March 10, 2005 @11:47PM (#11907003)
    Probably just going to be a PC interface that allows you to watch and schedule stuff on a TiVo box on your nextwork. There is too much DRM stuff going on now for them to be able to let you re-encode and copy shows. Also, that nicely competes with Windows XP Media Center, as you could add it onto your machine by simply buying a TiVo, instead of having to buy an OEM MCE machine.
    • Probably just going to be a PC interface that allows you to watch and schedule stuff on a TiVo box on your nextwork. There is too much DRM stuff going on now for them to be able to let you re-encode and copy shows. Also, that nicely competes with Windows XP Media Center, as you could add it onto your machine by simply buying a TiVo, instead of having to buy an OEM MCE machine.

      TiVo has had network scheduling for a long time. And they recently added the ability to copy programs to your PC and (with 3rd part
    • Re:Probably (Score:3, Informative)

      by prockcore (543967)
      why is this modded insightful? TiVo already lets you do everything you just mentioned.

      In the future, TiVo will let you pause live tv!
    • Haven't you heard of TiVoToGo [tivo.com]. You can already download the recordings to your pc and then burn using Sonic MyDVD 6.1
  • by jimson (516491) on Thursday March 10, 2005 @11:49PM (#11907013) Homepage
    All the "thoughts" that I've seen thus far here about what Tivo is up to amount to a TV tuner card. Come on /. Think outside the box a bit. Maybe they're getting into the content delivery game. Downloadable episodes!!

    • Why would we promote a middle man with a monthly subscription fee? We already have that in Cable and Sat. TV. We want shows that are cheap, ala carte, and don't require a subscription.

      What do I want to see out of Tivo? Nothing. It works the way I expect it to. What would I like to see out of Tivo2Go? No DRM and faster transfer rates. That's not going to happen so blah.
    • And what's the probability that TiVo would go the way of mp3.com at that point? The INSTANT that somebody thought about letting people download CDs legally, The Industry jumped all over them, no matter how legal the plan was.

      Yes, we have iTunes now. But the important thing is that The Industry needs to prove it has balls. The first one to dare stand up to The Industry MUST be responded to in a powerful way, even if The Industry gives in to the exact same plan 12 months later.

    • Made here on /. but I can't be arsed to find it...

      TiVo could roll up a Linux distro with all free software, managed images, and (and this is the clever bit) either dial up backups of the contents of /home or a simple 'backup to CD' option for root.

      How cool would that be? They have the technology...

      J.
  • by Statecraftsman (718862) on Thursday March 10, 2005 @11:51PM (#11907022) Homepage
    TiVo is smart to be thinking of other revenue sources but I don't think the PC is going to bring them much. I have a TV capture card and the ability to record shows on the computer. It's cool to catch the end of a show or something but it doesn't touch TiVo.

    The nice thing they have going for them is that it's hooked into the home entertainment system. You can record and playback all on your couch. When they move to the computer, they lose the oh-so-powerful couch comfort factor and most of their users.

    I'd really like to see TiVo go more in the direction of the media pc that everyone wants...the one that hooks into ethernet and plays mp3 and videos off a shared network drive. They've got a great interface for media playback and they'd do really well to extend it's reach beyond broadcast and into your personal media store.

    TiVo, forget the PC and extend your foothold in a way that makes sense for your current users!

    • Well if you could transfer all you dvds and audio cds to you computer, all you really need is a wireless audio/video transmitter and a newer model TV and you should be in business. Of course a good soundcard, not to mention speakers and amplifiers, is preferred for that special surround sound.

      Then again if you should attempt any such ting; the music and movie industry will send their goons around and pretty soon they will own you.

      *sigh* All I want is all the Simpsons episodes in one playlist, playing co
    • "I'd really like to see TiVo go more in the direction of the media pc that everyone wants...the one that hooks into ethernet and plays mp3 and videos off a shared network drive."

      Done, months ago.

      http://javahmo.sourceforge.net

      Also available, from the hacking community, multi-room viewing, video extraction, DVD creation, RSS readers, video overlay for stocks, sports, news, weather, etc., on-screen caller ID, the list goes on...
      • Done, months ago.

        JavaHMO (and TiVo's HMO for that matter) support mp3 playback from a shared network drive, but I still can't point my TiVo at a folder of mpg, divx, xvid, etc. out on the network and watch them. I love my TiVo, but it's no Xbox Media Center.

  • Dr Dobbs (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday March 10, 2005 @11:52PM (#11907032)
    Dobbs has an article about a Home Media Engine that can be activated in all the Series 2 Tivo's that allow you to build you own applications to run on the Tivo. I, of course, didn't read the article completely yet, but it sounds like they deliver a SDK for you to develop Java applications . You have to buy the mag, but the following is a link to the article.

    http://www.ddj.com/articles/2005/0503/

    Building on TiVo
    Arthur van Hoff, Adam Doppelt
    The Home Media Engine lets you build TiVo applications that integrate seamlessly with the familiar TiVo user experience.
    • Re:Dr Dobbs (Score:1, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward
      The Dr. Dobb's article didn't seem to do it justice. If you want to learn more about HME, go to the HME Sourceforge homepage and try it out. You can also check out most of the early apps at pvrblog.

      http://tivohme.sourceforge.net/ [sourceforge.net]

      http://hme.pvrblog.com/applications [pvrblog.com]
    • I suspect that HME plays a big role into the future of TiVo. It's been reported several times on slashdot (motto: if it's worth reporting, it's worth reporting repeatedly). Basically, it provides a way for a remote server to display graphics and stream media to the Tivo (think x-windows).

      It's not clear exactly what apps will be compelling -- does Joe User really want to play games, view weather, or get RSS feeds on their TiVo? As currently released, HME does allow interaction with the recording/playback

  • So Tivo wants to start competing with KnoppMyth [mysettopbox.tv]? Trouble is, KnoppMyth is free! Also, I don't know about Tivo, but Myth also allows you to record two shows at once if you have multiple tuner cards in your computer.

    BTM
    • by s.o.terica (155591) on Friday March 11, 2005 @01:35AM (#11907502)
      1) DirecTV boxes with TiVo have supported recording two channels at once for several years. The new HD DirecTiVo actually has four tuners -- two HD DirecTV and two OTA HD. It can even record two shows while watching a third show live. So the issue of recording two shows is not an architectural one, rather just a limitation of the current hardware.

      2) Most people who don't have DirecTV (or competing Dish Network) and have interest in DVRs also have cable, and more and more of the channels available on cable are available only as digital channels, which means it does you absolutely no good to have two tuners built-into your KnoppMyth box (or your Media Center PC, etc.) if you want to record anything on a digital cable channel. TiVo knows this, and understands that even if it were possible for the connected IR blaster to distinguish between two digital cable boxes, it would be out of the question to ask an average consumer to set up a system with two separate cable boxes connected to the same DVR, controlled with different IR blasters.

      3) TiVo has said repeatedly that they will support multiple channel recording for cable once the cable industry stops dragging its feet and releases two-way CableCard, which will work to allow TiVo to decrypt the digital signals, therefore eliminating the huge hassle of the separate cable box (just like they did with the hassle of a separate DirecTV box). But unfortunately the cable companies have a conflict of interest in wanting to be able to lock consumers into their crappy DVR boxes for as long as possible, so they're more than happy to fight CableCard as long as they can.

      Conclusion? It's really not TiVo's fault that you can't record more than one channel at once if you have cable. If you are upset at the vertical monopoly the cable companies are creating with this behavior, contact them and your federal lawmakers.

      • by larryj (84367)
        "The new HD DirecTiVo actually has four tuners -- two HD DirecTV and two OTA HD. It can even record two shows while watching a third show live."

        I think you meant to say that it can record two shows while watching a third pre-recorded show (from the Now Playing list). You can't watch a third show live while two others are recording.

        That's all my HD DirecTiVo is capable of at least. ;)
        • I thought the count was odd, too, but I would have assumed that you could use all four at once.

          Of course, I can only use 1.5 at once on my directivo--something blew out on tuner 1, and it follows whichever polarity tuner 2 is set for, apparently using the tuner 2 signal sometimes, too (yes, I've seen it with both on different channels with only one line attached). Then there are the days turner 1 asserts itself, uses it's own line, doesn't let tuner 2 switch it, but can't switch it itself.

          When I move thi
  • already there (Score:1, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward
    The service for transferring shows from the Tivo Series 2 to PC already exists. I have it. You can transfer & watch Tivo recordings on your PC as long as you have the password/code for your Tivo.
  • The best thing TiVo could do is saturate the market with their hardware, TiVo boxes, TiVo PC cards... And then open source all the software, broadcasting to the public the software is open source, can be modified, and do what you want with. They can still sell their subscription service for scheduling, because most people will not tweak their boxes. This will take content/media management responsibilities and legalities away from TiVo allowing the user to determine how and what to do with the media.
  • by Alpha_Traveller (685367) * on Friday March 11, 2005 @02:32AM (#11907742) Homepage Journal
    The most logical service at this point in terms of what to add, that would be a leapfrog over just about everyone, would definitely be a distribution service based on something TIVO's already mentioned with the outside world.

    Share-a-show Technology.

    Basically under the concept of 'networking' and community. It's already been established that with Tivo-To-Go, it's expected you'll share shows with your family and friends.

    NOW -- Take that a step farther. Suppose I get 50 people who all like Trek. Each person can share a particular trek episode with 6 people. So, you decide how many of the six 'burned' copies of Trek Episode 5 you're going to want to distribute among those 50 people who watch trek. If 9 people out of that 50 want to share, you've got more than enough copies of trek to go around. How do we get our very own copy to view? Well gee, I connect my tivo to the trek community. What do I get back? A list of every single Trek episode I can now download.

    This beats HBO on demand when you don't have HBO. Of course it might be restricted by what you're subscribed to via your cable/satellite company but you'd basically be able to download off broadband your favorite shows. Things your single tivo just couldn't get because you could only tape one or two things at a time. Your favorite shows, any show on demand just so long as their Tivo (or computer) was online, was on broadband and had some distribution tokens left.
  • I think everything should be routed through my pc that is digital. Down with these so called television units, they are oldschool. Let us have all the power through our PC so we may control it and possess all media simultaneously and back it up for later generations.

    [cx]
  • What TIVO should do is sell a PCI TV card. It should come with an external USB Cablecard/Smartcard reader so we can get HDTV broadcasts. And they should do it fast before the Flags shut down the fun!
  • I'll just continue to the DirectTV offerings that are currently $4.95/mo over the $12.95/mo TiVo cost.

    It's just that simple.
  • As long as it does not morph into Foxtrot's MomVo!
  • When I first saw that headline I thought maybe TiVo was considering creating a Linux Distro -- something that, on first blush, sounds weird. However, they do run Linux on their boxes; so, they might have the staff to handle such a thing. Maybe they should consider their own distro and bundle this potential new offering with it.

    TiVo users are pretty tech savvy people, in my experience. It could actually find a market and put some profit into their sagging bottom line. They might even be able to do it on the
  • Couldn't this just be an expansion of their desktop software for managing TIVO content from your PC?

    For example, here is their Max OS X version [apple.com].
  • Tivo should continue to do what it does well but continued emphasis should be placed on using it as a frontend for more powerful PCs.

    Tivo is inexpensive, unobtrusive, quiet and good at recording and playing shows. It's also good at presenting multimedia content stored on PCs. It belongs in the living room; your PC doesn't. (once you rise above a dormroom lifestyle, that is )

    Ideally, there would be one size Tivo to choose from. I imagine this would allow Tivo to save a lot of money on production, pack

For every bloke who makes his mark, there's half a dozen waiting to rub it out. -- Andy Capp

Working...