Tuesday, December 26, 2006

TVersity Release (Dec 25, 2006)

A new version of TVersity was released on 25th December 2006 where in most recent beta release itterations, it addresses AV streaming issues to ensure Xbox 360 users move over in their droves to a real Internet and Network capable UPnP Media Server.

The "TVersity Universal Media Player" has a clear roadmap and goal, where if my understanding is correct it's to :-

  • Enable all it's user community of numerous network AV playback devices to "just" play any NON DRM'd AV media from "Wherever they want to Wherever they are" without worrying about download, conversion and network media serving issues.
My advice is to keep a watchful eye on TVersity through 2007, where here are some useful links :-

Sunday, December 24, 2006

ThoughtFix and Welcome to your Nokia 770

I have just been reading ThoughtFix's "welcome to your new Nokia 770" Post in his Blog on the uses for a Nokia 770.

Great post ThoughtFix with lots of useful information for new users that you have gained via your personal use of a Nokia 770 with your desire to try out the very latest on what can be achieved.

We really do need more users of the Nokia 770 like yourself, to continue to reduce any mystery surrounding just what the Nokia 770 Internet Tablet can/could be used for via it's underlying Linux based OS.

The Nokia 770 is already a great little Wi-Fi Internet Tablet, which works well in it's primary role as a truly portable internet surfing device. With the further interest and hacking styled developments from the User/Linux/Maemo community in 2007, who knows where and how this fledgling Internet Tablet Market could develop?

Monday, December 18, 2006

Canola, with themes and multi-language support

I thought it useful to post some further images to illustrate current Canola Beta Version r1726:1727M, now installed on my Nokia 770. (Previous blog posts were of an earlier demo version)

In this post I provide Nokia 770 screen captures which illustrate presentation improvements to Canola Config (Web interface) and the Canola players support for themes; I have therefore provided some images of the new wood_box theme [that can be quickly changed too, from the default theme, via the config interface see 1d)] these images 2..) quickly illustrate the difference to the default theme.

---- Edit
22/12/06 ----

I can heartily recommend downloading the latest high quality Video Tutorial
"Canola How to" from Marcelo as there are real hidden gems such as how to quickly navigate from now playing to top menu and back again. Be warned however that it's a hefty 82Mb; or alternatively you can watch the lower quality YouTube version Found Here I believe that my blog post images compliment Marcelo's Video explanation of Canola usage.

---- End Edit 22/12/06 ----

Not highlighted in the images below is that Canola will be capable of multi-language interface support. The minor catch is the Canola team a requesting support from the Canola user community to take three small .pot files to translate Canola UI files to another lanaguge. The files that require translating can be found

1a) Canola Config, Feeds page (Photocast & Podcast) 1b) Canola Config, IRadio 1c) Canola Config, Media Collection 1d) Canola Config, Themes 1e) Canola Config, Passwords 2) Canola, Woodbox Theme. (Initial screen, NO Network connection) 2a) Browsing local audio content 2b) Playing local audio content. (time played, audio level and rating options)

2c) Playing network served audio content (No rating option currently available in network mode) 2d) Playing network served audio content (switched to volume slider option) 2e) Playing a slide show of local photo content. (Note: icons for pause and return) 2f) Error: When attempting to browse served media when no network connection made. 2g) Message ready waiting to close or return to Canola.
Last and not least (I almost forgot) Canola's Nokia 770 desktop applet (Finger size) for quickly refreshing shared media and/or starting Canola.

If anyone has any questions or comments, don't hesitate to provide feedback as I wish to improve my posts, in an attempt to ensure they are always useful.

Monday, November 27, 2006

The Canola Media Player for the Nokia 770 (2)

Things I forgot to mention in my earlier blog post and/or did not expand on .

1) Install

I manually installed/un-installed from a prior download and then installed the beta of Canola via the application catalogue package list and direct Wi-Fi Internet connection in the application manager. Everything was fine which bodes well for an easy install of Canola for all types of Nokia 770 user.

2) AV Formats

I did not test multiple AV formats at this stage, restricting myself to simple jpg Photos, mp3 Audio and mp4 Video [Video transcoded by the Nokia 770 Media Converter] I tested streaming across my home network, via the Internet and of course playback directly from the Nokia 770 and installed 1GB RS-Multi Media Card.

3) Themes

The current Canola theme is so pleasant and clear that I do not think I will be dashing to change it, anyway my personal opinion is that themes are for users with too much time on their hands. (Not available for test in Beta Version)

4) Win UPnP Servers: Sorted Alphabetically not a complete list by any means. If you would like me to review a Win UPnP Server with Canola, please include a comment.

I did basic testing with the following on my XP SP2 PC were everything generally just worked, but of course this is the beauty of UPnP™, each server has it's good and bad points ;)
  • FUPPES 0.5.4 (Audio only)
  • Media Connect 2.0
  • Philips Media Manager
  • SimpleCenter (Essentially PMM above with improvements)
  • TVersity (My favourite)
  • Twonky Version 4.01
5) Using two servers at the same time!

One real killer benefits of Canola is the ability to utilise two UPnP Servers at the same time! Anyone familiar with UPnP™ Media serving and playback will be aware of the current restriction of only being able to do one thing at once with a typical UPnP Renderer/Playback Device.

Being able to serve network pictures with one UPnP™ server whilst playing music with another UPnP server is simply fabulous. (The servers do not need to be on the same device i.e. Linux NAS, PC & MAC) This also means any UPnP server can be selected to take advantage of its particular features, that is not available on another.

Hmmm this has got me thinking the Nokia 770's or their replacement with Canola would make great MS ZUNE Killers?

Saturday, November 25, 2006

The Canola Media Player for the Nokia 770

I have been fortunate to be given an opportunity by Marcelo Oliveira of INdT to try out a DEMO Version of the Canola Media Player which brings a "Windows Media Center/Front Row" style application to the Linux Nokia 770 Internet Tablet.

"Canola is planned for general release, on the 29th November 2006"

What I particularly like about Canola, apart from "Sleek & Sexy" look below, is the way it attempts to fully address both local and remote aspects of AV Media playback on the Nokia 770 from within the same application. i.e. Local stored content, Podcasts, Internet Radio, Network and UPnP: Audio, Photo & Video Media playback.

The following are a number of screen grabs to illustrate the Canola interface and basic features of the demo version. Canola: Designed from the ground up for finger use, but works equally well with the Stylus.

1a) Starting Canola, we go straight into the interface where by default the Audio Icon is in focus.

Audio Menu Options Are :-
  • Audio Library: Sub-categories are Playlist, Artist, Album, Genre & Songs
  • Shared Music: Sub-categories are dependent what is available on the local Network, in my case Mikes: TVersity Media Server.
  • Podcast (See Configure Canola Config web 5a & b)
  • IRadio Stations (See Configure Canola web 5a)
1b) Selecting Photo icon brings Pictures into focus. (Focused Icon highlighted green may be nice?)

Photo Menu Options Are :-
  • Picture library
  • Shared Picture
  • Photocast (See Configure Canola web 5a & b)
1c) Selecting Video icon brings Video into focus.

Video Menu Options Are :-
  • Video Library
  • Shared Video
2) Here we are in the Audio Menu and have selected Shared Music where we can see my preferred UPnP Server is available on the local network. (The green icon top left next to battery icon, indicates a strong Wi-Fi connection)

3) Here we have a dilemma in the DEMO VERSION of Canola as I am within the Audio leg of Canola but now via TVersity am presented with all TVersity options of Audio, Photos and Video.

4) Here we can see the Canola options available in the standard Nokia Interface after installation of Canola. We have "Canola" the main application and "Canola configuration" to configure aspects of Canola as it develops.

5a) Here we have opened the Configure Canola web interface. (Note: This is an early preview, version with no graphical interface defined, just pure html + ajax)

DEMO Version Configure Canola Options are :-
  • Feeds (For Audio and Photo Podcasts)
  • IRadio (For Internet Radio Streams)
  • Media Collection (Not figured out how to use this yet)
  • Password (To protect access to Canola Configuration settings)
5b) Here we are editing Feeds in the Configure Canola web interface.

6) Here we are streaming an mp3 audio track using TVersity as the UPnP Server, the ID3 tagging information is provided to advise on Track, Artist and Album.

7) Here we are playing an mp3 file held locally on my Nokia's 1Gb MMC card, note how we are able to see the Album Art which has been added to the actual mp3 file and we can FF/REW the playback. (Icon over time played)

Please note that the above is a view of Canola which gives an insight into but cannot be considered as anything more than an early overview. My additional comments etc.

Features I like that are already available in DEMO VERSION :-
  • Ability to add/edit personal choice Podcasts and Internet Radio URL's via the Canola configuration page.
  • Text scrolls in Canola when it's too long to fit the width of the display area.
  • Ability to stream Audio from one UPnP or DAAP/DPAP Server while you browse Photos from local, or another DPAP sharing or UPnP Server. (UPnP Audio from one Server while you look at Photos from other)
Features I hope to see as Canola develops :-
  • Album Art support to be extended to UPnP Servers that serve the correct information.
  • UPnP Server/Browser Icon at highest level, so as to allow for a traverse of UPnP Tree structure as UPnP server intended.
  • Playlist manipulation to create, edit and save (Via Canola configuration)
  • UPnP Controller capabilities to remotely control actual playback on another device.
Thanks once again to Marcelo Oliveira for giving me the opportunity to have a play with an early version of Canola where I hope I have provided a reasonable early overview. Please do comment as feedback is very welcome.

Sunday, October 15, 2006

Media Streamer Audio Playback with Album Art

Media Streamer V1.1-2 provides Album Art in it's interface whilst playing tracks directly on the Nokia 770 or whilst controlling playback on a UPnP Player that allows for UPnP remote control such as the Philips SL300i.

I have been able to view Album Art on Media Streamer when using PMM and/or Twonky on .mp3 and .wma tracks where my initial testing seem to indicate :-
  • PMM (& I imagine Simple Center) work when the Album Art is in the same folder as the tracks and named as (folder.jpg)
  • Twonky works when the Album Art is tagged within the Audio file.
I have also tried adding Album Art to .wav using AudioShell 1.3 Beta 2, but this is not being correctly read by PMM and/or Twonky and passed to Media streamer. (If this is how it's done?)

TVersity V0.9.8.2 does not yet support album art but hopefully won't be long in coming now that id3V2 is supported ;-)

Media Streamer apparently also works with unprotected .acc files I imagine the Album Art will work in the same way as for .wma and .mp3 audio.
Here are some examples screen captures...

1) Crowded House, Weather With You in .wma format, with playback on Nokia 770.

2) Madonna, Papa don't Preach in .mp3 format, playback on Philips SL300i

3) Peter Gabriel, Downside-Up in .mp3 format, playback on Philips SL300i

4) Crowded House, Weather With You in .wma format, with playback on Philips SL300i

Issue Notes: (Probably interesting to the Media Streamer development team)

I did notice some niggles switching between the audio formats when using Media Streamer as either a controller or a player, I was using Twonky during my tests. (The playback time status gets corrupted and sometimes Media Streamer would state a playback error on completion of buffering or similar but would play the track?)

I also noticed that Media Streamer works best and most consistently when there is ONLY one Media Server on the Network. (Think something becomes confused and Media Streamer perhaps ends up communicating with more than one UPnP Server, in error)

You will note that the Album Art has a small magnifying glass indicating you can view images at full scale on the Nokia 770, this however does not work for Album Art.

Comments are always welcome...

Thursday, October 05, 2006

Streaming Images to Nokia 770 via TVersity & Media Streamer

I have been playing around with Media Streamer for a while and am able to stream all my photos from my XP PC, to my Nokia 770 wirelessly; using TVersity Media Server on my XP PC & Media Streamer on my Nokia 770.

(I am using TVersity V0.9.8.1 with Media Streamer V1.1-2 Apologies for the quality of TVersity Logo, it's all I have)

I do not need to worry about rescaling and pre-downloading my images to the Nokia 770 because TVersity and Media Streamer work together so seamlessly.

All the images below are screen grabs from the Nokia 770, illustrating how Media streamer can be used to view images.

1) Tversity_logo (Image) has been selected from My Pictures
and added to the Media Streamer Play list

2) Tversity_logo (Image) has been loaded as
a thumbnail in Media Streamer Player

3) Tversity_logo (Image) is being loaded
(full view) in Media Streamer Player.

4) Tversity_logo is in full view in Media Streamer Player
(Arrows to go Fwd/Back, useful with a playlist of images)

5) Tversity_logo in full view in Media Streamer Player.
(When we view an image, info & arrows are discarded)

6) Play list of images from a trip to Moscow in 2006
One image selected and displayed as a thumbnail.

7) Same Moscow image being fully displayed.

Sunday, September 03, 2006

Hamachi, VNC and the Nokia 770

Over the last couple of months I have been having a "general tussle" improving my understanding on how best to create a personal private secure network before I begin increasing the "Freedom & Access" to my home PC and my personal interest AV media; wherever I happen to be in the World at any time.

In my quest to obtain both the knowledge, software applications and methods to achieve my overall aim, this is my current workable(ish) solution :-

1. Secure Virtual Private Network SVPN

Hamachi is a great application to create a Secure Virtual Private Network VPN for my personal PC's and "Internet-Net workable Devices" such as my Nokia 770 Internet tablet. Thanks to Internet Tablet Talk Forum I quickly found Hamachi (Maemo Port) that runs on the Nokia 770 all be it currently at command line level, running in an Xterm window.

2. Virtual Network Computing VNC

TightVNC (Version 1.2.9) is the VNC server application I have currently chosen to run on my XP PC. There are a number of other free options available such as RealVNC, UltraVNC, I am not sure which provides the best features for my needs.

VNC Viewer (Maemo Port) Version 0.3 is the VNC Viewer application that runs on the Nokia 770 enabling me to log into and control my XP PC remotely. Here is an Internet Tablet Talk forum thread which takes us through more recent developments of VNC Viewer for the Nokia 770 (OS 2006) and the various options on its use etc.

3. Set-up and use.

After reading up a little I was not about to let TightVNC sever run merrily on off onto the World Wide Web and the outside world, opening up ports on my router which would say "Here I am, come and hack me" without first understanding how I could set up Hamachi to create a secure personal Network.

Installation of Hamachi and VNC was relatively easy on the PC and the Nokia 770 device

First I installed Hamachi on my XP PC and my Nokia 770 and then made sure that they could see each other across my very first Virtual Private Network . Then I installed TightVNC on my PC and established that with Hamachi there was no need to open any ports on my router. Then it was simply a matter of starting the VNC Viewer on the Nokia 770 connecting to my Hamachi IP and hey presto; I was controlling my PC remotely using via a secure Hamachi VPN network session.

4) Notes:
  • "Hamachi & TightVNC Win32 Server" programs need to be set as exceptions through the XP Firewall.
  • With Hamachi running there is no need to open any ports for the VNC server on the router, you simply use the Hamachi provided IP address to connect VNC Viewer to the TightVNC server running on the PC
If anyone is sufficiently interested I can provide more information.

Media Streamer for the Nokia 770

Today I found out about and downloaded a small application for the Nokia 770 called Media streamer. This application enables me to playback AV material on my Philips SL300i and Hi-fi using my Nokia 770 to control events. Here are some screen grabs to illustrate Media Streamer running on the Nokia 770.

1) Below we can see (On the left) Mikes Twonky as the selected UPnP Media Server on my Network. Note the three folders Music, Pictures & Video as these can be drilled down into to select items for playback. Items selected appear in the right window as a Playlist.

MediaStreamer with Twonky Media Server

2) Below we are now playing the Keane track "Can't Stop Now" on the Nokia 770, served by Twonky, notice how the next track will be Sunshine, but with the use of the small arrows either side of the remove option we are able to promote or demote tracks in the Playlist.

MediaStreamer playing Keane, Can't Stop Now

3) Below we are playing a Steve Winwood track Horizon, not on the Nokia 770 but on my UPnP hardware player running on the network and connected to my Hi-Fi.

Media Streamer controlling select & playback on SL300i

As we can see, to be able to playback my interest in Pictures, Music & Videos on the TV and Hi-Fi from my PC and the Internet using the Nokia 770 is already a reality.

Media Streamer can be downloaded to the Nokia 770 using the built in Download Manager on OS 2006.
  1. Tap and select Tools, Application manager
  2. Tap Install new applications
  3. Find Media Streamer in the list & tap it twice to install it. If you don’t see Media Streamer on the list, refresh the list from Application manager > Tools > Refresh list of packages
Twonky is just one example of a UPnP Server that can be installed on a number of devices and/or PC's which will interoperate with the Nokia 770 and Media Streamer and/or a Hardware UPnP Player.

Saturday, June 10, 2006

TVersity "Universal" Media Server, NOW with mobile device support!

The TVersity team have just released the 0.9.6 (beta). What is particularly interesting about this beta release, is support for multiple devices on the home network, which now also includes support for portable devices with web access such as the PSP and Nokia 770. Its early days but the new features of TVersity really make it stand out from the crowd of A/V Media Servers.

It great to be able to allow the existing powerful PC in the spare bedroom/office be the true "media centre" without the need for another PC to be in the living room at great additional expense.

Don't believe all the hype you read surrounding Intel, Microsoft's, Apple's versions of how to enjoy your AV Media, Anytime, Anywhere, Anyplace. You might be surprised to find that you can achieve the same "Utopia" already with many of the devices you already own with perhaps a purchase of a relatively cheap and cheerful A/V UPnP Hardware media player.

Remember the Betamax - VHS war about which was the best Video player; it was not won by who provided the best Hardware platform and overall Picture quality, but how, what and who provided the best overall media experience.

I truly believe that the TVersity Media Server (Still Beta) is becoming an excellent enabler in our consumer march towards a great personal A/V media experience wherever we may be.

Off now to throughly test how well latest 0.9.6 beta version of TVersity works with my Philips SL300i and my Nokia 770 in day to day use.

Sunday, May 21, 2006

Nokia 770 as UPnP Media Player & Controller?

I purchased a Nokia 770 yesterday, to continue in my overall and longer term desire to be able to Play & Control A/V Media, Anytime, Anywhere. The Nokia 770 is a small compact Wi-Fi/Bluetooth internet tablet device, running on Linux, with Wireless B/G support. The basic specification, extract from Nokia Site:-

Weight: 230 g, 185 g Dimensions: 141 x 79 x 19 mm, 135 x 78 x 14 mm (without protective cover)
Color: Black and matte silver. Display: High-resolution (800x480) touch screen with up to 65,536 colors. Operating temperature: -10°C to +55 °C

  • Memory: Flash 128MB
  • Memory card: 64MB RS-MMC (Reduced Size - MultiMediaCard)
Operating system: Internet Tablet OS 2005 edition

Key Applications:-
  • Web Browser (Opera 8) with Flash player
  • Email Client
  • Internet Radio
  • RSS Feed Reader
Media, Utilities and Games
  • Audio/Video player
  • Image viewer
  • PDF viewer
  • File Manager
  • Clock
  • Search
  • Calculator
  • Notes and Sketch
  • Games (Chess, Mahjong, Marbles)
Supported File Formats
  • Audio: AAC, AMR, MP2, MP3, RA (Real Audio), WAV
  • Image: BMP, GIF, ICO, JPEG, PNG, TIFF, SVG-tiny
  • Video: 3GP, AVI, H.263, MPEG-1, MPEG-4, RV (Real Video
  • Internet radio playlists; M3U, PLS
  • WLAN: 802.11b/g
  • Bluetooth specification: 1.2 (For Internet connection and file transfer via phone. Profiles supported: Dial-up Networking, File Transfer, Generic Access, SIM Access and Serial Port profiles)
  • USB 2.0 device mode for PC connectivity
  • RS-MMC (Dual Voltage)
  • 3.5 mm stereo audio out
  • Power connector (2mm)
Within minutes of getting the 770 home and charging the battery I was up and running and web browsing from anywhere in the home. The Nokia seems to have a good level of A/V format support right out of the box.

I found a more detailed list of audio and video formats that the Audio Player, Video Player, Image Viewer, and browser currently support.

Mime type File extension Version Application
audio/x-mp3 *.mp3 MPEG-1, MPEG-2 and MPEG-2.5 Layer III, CBR/VBR, 8kbps - 320kbps bitrate Audio Player
audio/x-mp2 *.mp2 MPEG-1 and MPEG-2 Layer II, CBR/VBR, all bitrates except free bitrate mode Audio Player
audio/x-m4a *.aac MPEG-4 AAC, LC/LTP, mono/stereo, up to 288kbps bitrate Audio Player
audio/x-amr *.amr GSM Adaptive Multi-Rate Speech, RFC 3267 Audio Player
audio/x-amr *.awb Adaptive Multi-Rate Wideband Speech, RFC 3267 Audio Player
audio/x-wav *.wav Linear PCM, a-law, u-law, IMA ADPCM Audio Player
audio/x-mpegurl *.m3u MP3 Playlist File Audio Player
audio/x-scpls *.pls shoutcast PLS file format Audio Player
video/3gpp *.3gp 3GPP video, MPEG4 Visual Simple Profile Level 2, H.263 profile 0 level 10, audio: Adaptive Multi-Rate Speech, Adaptive Multi-Rate Wideband Speech, MPEG-4 AAC LC/LTP - 3GPP demux based on spec 3GPP TS 26.244 v6.0.0 (2004-03): Basic profile, excluding timed text, audio-only clips not supported Video Player
video/3gpp *.3gpp 3GPP video, MPEG4 Visual Simple Profile Level 2, H.263 profile 0 level 10, audio: Adaptive Multi-Rate Speech, Adaptive Multi-Rate Wideband Speech, MPEG-4 AAC LC/LTP - 3GPP demux based on spec 3GPP TS 26.244 v6.0.0 (2004-03): Basic profile, excluding timed text, audio-only clips not supported Video Player
video/mpeg *.mpe MPEG-1 Video, up to CIF resolution @30 fps Video Player
video/mpeg *.mpeg MPEG-1 Video, up to CIF resolution @30 fps Video Player
video/mpeg *.mpg MPEG-1 Video, up to CIF resolution @30 fps Video Player
video/x-msvideo *.avi AVI file format (containing MPEG4 Visual Simple Profile Level 2/H.263 profile 0 level 10, MPEG audio layer III) Video Player
video/x-real *.ra RealAudio 8,9,10 Video Player
video/x-real *.ram RealNetworks Metafile Video Player
video/x-real *.rm RealAudio, RealVideo 8,9,10 (QCIF @15 fps) Video Player
video/x-real *.rmj Real Jukebox file Video Player
video/x-real *.rmvb RealVideo variable bitrate Video Player
video/x-real *.rpm RealNetworks Metafile Video Player
video/x-real *.rv RealVideo 8,9,10 (QCIF @15 fps) Video Player
video/x-real *.sdp Session Description Protocol File Video Player
image/bmp *.bmp BMP images Image Viewer
image/gif *.gif GIF images Image Viewer
image/jpeg *.jpe JPEG images Image Viewer
image/jpeg *.jpeg JPEG images Image Viewer
image/jpeg *.jpg JPEG images Image Viewer
image/png *.png PNG images Image Viewer
image/svg+xml *.svg SVG Tiny Profile Image Viewer
image/tiff *.tif Tag Image File Format Image Viewer
image/tiff *.tiff Tag Image File Format Image Viewer
image/wbmp *.wbmp WBMP images Image Viewer
image/x-ico *.ico ICO images Image Viewer
application/x-shockwave-flash *.swf Macromedia Flash 6 Internet Browser

I have already updated the 770 to the latest version of firmware "Nokia_770_SE2005_5_2006_13_7.bin" like many other users I found updating the unit via USB a little frustrating, as the provided update wizard hangs first time it's run and in my particular case on subsequent attempts, stopped during update at around 50%. I tried updating on two different XP PC's before turning off Norton Antivirus on one and the update completed successfully.

I have attempted to run TVersities Flash GUI on the Nokia 770, in readiness for the up and coming TVersity Player but the memory of the unit is apparently to low to run the current GUI. The unit locked up whilst displaying the TVersity Logo, see picture.

Friday, May 05, 2006

No Chicks in Bald Eagles nest

It appears that the webcam of the Bald Eagles Nest will not be providing the expected view of any Chicks. I went to view the nest this evening via the webcam and was disappointed to find an empty nest. BBC News Report1 and BBC News Report2 sheds more light on where the nest was located in Vancouver and why there will be NO CHICKS.

There is good news in the BBC Report2, where it seems other Webcams of Bald Eagle Chicks which will be on stream as early as next week. More information on why the two eggs on original nest did not hatch is available via hancockhouse

Monday, April 24, 2006

TVersity Available with RSS Feeds

TVersity is now available with direct support for RSS Feeds, which introduces the most fantastic possibilities!

Within minutes of downloading the latest version of this UPnP Media Server, I was happily playing my own interests in Audio, Picture & Video "directly from an RSS Feed URL" on my TV via TVersity and my Philips SL300i.

TVersity Release Quote :-
We are happy to announce the newest release of the TVersity Media Server, version 0.9.5 With this release we once again break new grounds by allowing owners of any UPnP A/V enabled network device to subscribe to Audio/Image/Video Podcasts and Blogs and play the enclosed media disregarding the codec limitations of their device.

While audio blogs typically contain mp3 files and image blogs typicaly contain jpegs, both formats that any media hub can handle, video blogs are mostly in an iPod Video compatile format which happens to be incompatible with most media hubs. This is not an issue for TVersity due to its built in transcoder which allows an on the fly conversion of those videos to a format supported by the target device.

In addition to podcasts and blogs the new release connects your media hub to Internet resources such as Flickr, Yahoo! Video Search, Google Video Search, Webjay and more. With this much content available for playback with a click of your remote, the media adapter you purchased is finally worth it!

Friday, April 14, 2006


Mariposa means Butterfly in Spanish

I must have been far to busy focusing on techy websites for Video Streaming and Downloading, as I totally missed this site until now?

mariposaHD.TV claim to be the first Internet TV show to provide HDTV distributed directly over the internet via bittorrent. Absolutely TOP quality High Definition Video downloads in .wmvHD 1020i & 720p or mp4 for the iPod.

There are to date three show downloads available covering Glamour and Style mixed with a touch of Adventure. I found downloading these shows to be relatively quick using utorrent 1Gb for the wmvHD 720p versions. (I downloaded all three shows in approx 6 hrs)
TVersity UPnP Media Server can transcode the HD wmv to mpeg to allow me to play these shows on my TV using a SL300i UPnP Player, but I am currently experiencing issues with Video/Audio being out of sync with the transcoded versions, the shows play fine on my PC in WMP10.

To take a direct quote from mariposaHD.TV
Welcome to the future of television!

mariposaHD is the world's first High Definition TV series distributed directly on the Internet. And it's free. mariposaHD is recorded, edited, and distributed in the full 1920x1080 pixel resolution of the 1080i standard. We distribute mariposaHD using the BitTorrent peer-to-peer software. With a broadband Internet connection, you can download and watch mariposaHD on your PC, your HDTV, or even a video iPod.

mariposaHD is produced by four ordinary guys who quit their jobs, moved to South America, and decided to make a TV show. We film everything with HDV camcorders and edit the video on a PC in our living room. You can download mariposaHD for free from our Web site, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, from anywhere in the world. mariposaHD is distributed under a Creative Commons license which means that you can keep it, copy it, and share it forever as long as you don't charge for it or alter it.

This is the way that television should work! So enjoy it,

Mike, Jeff, Dominic, and Tamir
Motamorfosis Productions

Thursday, April 13, 2006

Listable, a new way to get to resources quickly

I have been recently keeping an eye on a web 2.0 start-up called Listable.

Listable is different to say Digg and del.icio.us, in that rather than just pointing users to breaking stories (Digg) and popular resources (Del.icio.us) it attempts to provide a tailored listing of anything the "Listable user community" can think of.

Listable works by combining Tagging, Voting and Listing, Oh and it also has RSS Feeds :-)

Listable enables the most popular resource within any given list to make it to the top, based on it's popularity etc. To put listable to the test, I have just started my first and a new list in listable!
For those of you who like to watch and listen to local and Internet based A/V Media utilising a UPnP Media Player and Server, please take the time to add/vote on your preference.

Tuesday, April 11, 2006

BBC's Podcast Trial, Introduces Terry Wogan Today.

The BBC have today included Terry Wogan in their Podcast trials, which are currently continuing until the middle of the 2006.

The BBC claim that any music being played on their stations will not be included in the Podcasts due to complex issues surrounding the BBC's ability to include commercially available music. Apparently unsigned artist music is included in a few of the Podcasts.

The Podcast is basically Terry's waffle between the music tracks on his show, but his dulcet tones are quiet relaxing :-)

[Tip, clicking on the above picture will directly play or download Terry's first Podcast, whilst it is available.]

Note: Terry's week day shows can, also be fully listened to again (Including the music) but these streams are only provided in Real Media Audio.

Saturday, April 01, 2006

Feed2Podcast explained.

Feed2Pocast is an interesting application, which enables anyone to turn his or her Blog content into an automated Audio Podcast.

Feed2Podcast means that anyone's blog is able to speak for itself!

I've added a couple of links in my blog sidebar, to illustrate Feed2Podcast capabilities with my blogs content, you can also click on the provided image above to try the Feed2Podcast player.

Please Note: In the player you are able to both view and select which post is played by selecting the up and down arrows to the right of volume control. (illustrated in image)

Feed2Podcast updates the individual's blog podcast, approximately every three hours.