Big hybrids are dying an ugly death, GM and Chrysler not married yet, a look at the new Nissan Z, and a ride in the Lexus IS-F. Listen now: Download today's podcastSHOW NOTES
It slows down your browsing. It makes some Web sites inaccessible for no discernible reason. It doesn't even offer you any xiao long bao or pu'er tea for your troubles. But if you want to know what life behind the Great Firewall of China is like, then the Firefox plug-in China Channel is the cheapest and fastest way to experience using the Internet in China without actually being there.
After installation, getting to experience Web surfing the way the Chinese do isn't hard at all. Users have three ways to activate China Channel: via the China Channel … Read more
If you're a fan of things like MythBusters, Make magazine, Burning Man, the do-it-yourself movement and the like, you are probably going to love Prototype This
The new TV show, which debuts tonight at 10 p.m. on Discovery Channel, is a celebration of what intelligent, creative, and slightly crazy people can make when given freedom, expert help, and a bit of a budget.
The basic theme of Prototype This is that the four hosts, Terry Sandin, Zoz Brooks, Mike North, and Joe Grand take their combined skills and use each episode to conceive of and craft some entirely … Read more
Fios TV is adding to its leading HD channel count with six new original HD channels before the end of the year.
Launched by Entertainment Studios, a large independent producer of first-run content that's nonetheless hardly a household name, the new channels will serve niche markets that are largely already served by existing, well-known specialty channels.
The channels center around cars, pets, comedy, food, celebrity news and gossip, and travel. They'll be pure 1080i high-definition with no standard-def content, and will include Entertainment Studios' 15 original show titles at first, including Comics Unleashed, a talk show featuring four comics and apparently similar to the old Tough Crowd with Colin Quinn on Comedy Central; and Entertainers with Byron Allen and Kickin' It with Byron Allen, hosted by Entertainment Studios' ubiquitous CEO, who hosts several of his company's shows.… Read more
Sony's PlayStation 3 got a small update early Thursday morning that added a new channel called Life with PlayStation. It merges news feeds, weather forecasts, and live Web cams on a giant world map.
It's an evolution on the Folding@Home application, the protein-folding scientific project that's gotten a hefty processing boost from worldwide PlayStation 3 owners who run the small application when not using their systems to play games or watch movies.
What makes the service neat is that it figures out where you are and automatically jumps to that point when you start it up. … Read more
We just finished a major update of our popular chart of HD programming compared and the new winner, in terms of national and local HD channels, by our count, is Fios TV. Bringing a hefty 83 such channels to bear in the New York City area, the fiber-optic-based TV service from Verizon comes out ahead of perennial satellite champions DirecTV (67 channels) and Dish Network (68) as of today.
The key here is our definition of "national and local." The big three all tout HD channel counts near or above the nice round number of 100 in their advertising campaigns, and by our count of "total channels," they all come more or less close enough, but we took a closer look at the channels themselves, and broke down national and local channels we consider important. That includes local broadcast channels like PBS (which neither satellite service offers), ABC and Fox, premium movie channels like HBO and Max (formerly Cinemax), and the myriad niche channels from ESPN to Mav TV to Palladia to World Fishing Network. We specifically exclude Regional Sports Networks, exclusive channels like Voom (which is only available on NY-area provider Cablevision), and duplicate feeds of premium movie channels, such as HBO (east) and HBO (west) carried by DirecTV and Fios.
I've just watched the History Channel documentary "102 Minutes That Changed America." It's a powerful piece of work.
(Update: I see the History Channel will be airing this documentary again on Sunday, 9/14, at 8pm. If you haven't seen it, you should. If you have kids that weren't old enough to follow the TV coverage in 2001 but are old enough now, watch it with them. This show consists solely of video and sounds from the morning of the attacks, with no new narration, a technique that is very effective at re-creating what … Read more
A couple weeks ago, after being briefed on the new Zune, a colleague described some of its features to his teenage daughter. She responded positively to the Wi-Fi download feature, but was skeptical about the "Buy from FM" concept that lets people tag songs they hear on the Zune's built-in radio for later purchase.
Would lots of radio stations actually support this feature or would it be relegated to a narrow niche like XM radio? (Her example, not mine.)
She need not have worried. On Monday, Microsoft announced that many of the largest radio conglomerates in the … Read more
This post was updated at 1:50 p.m. PDT to correct the spelling of Tory Belleci's name.
MythBusters co-host Adam Savage is stepping back from public comments suggesting that legal counsel from several credit card companies led the Discovery Channel to pull the plug on an episode dedicated to security holes in RFID.
At the Last HOPE conference in New York in July, Savage told a crowd of several thousand people that his theory on why MythBusters had not gone forward with a planned episode on RFID (radio frequency identification) hackability was that on a conference call to … Read more