Tag Archives: HP

Commentary on Camera Policies at Concerts

Here’s and interesting article I got from the NIN twitter feed.

nineinchnails RT @rob_sheridan: CNET has a nice article up about open camera policies at concerts, with some comments from me: http://bit.ly/1HVAlO

I’ve been to NIN and Gwen Stefani concerts with the everything goes camera policies and to a Bjork concert where I was trampled by a large security guard on her way to kick a fan out of the concert for having a camera phone out of his pocket.   When the camera policy is loose, the audience is more engaged and, in general,  having more fun as they make memories and share their experience with the world in real time.  With respect to the Bjork concert, I really didn’t appreciate being trampled and I would have liked to, at least, have taken a picture of myself and my husband at the event to mark the occasion.

To be honest, whenever I see an artist demand a no camera policy, my gut tells me it’s because the artist knows the show isn’t that good and doesn’t want footage leaked that will discourage potential customers.  Any reasonable person knows, regardless of the image and sound quality, NOTHING beats the experience of actually being at the concert.   I applaud those artists that understand their audience and understand cameras are for admiration, adoration, and commemoration and not piracy.  Not only that, with some clever marketing, fan generated media can be made into some nice personalized merchandise for the artist to sell back to the fan.  Example:  HP and Gwen Stefani collaborated with fans to make personalized concert books.  It was a win-win-win solution!


Screen Rotation on HP Mini 1000

I finally got some time to play with the settings on my Mini 1000.  The rotate display function can be found in the graphics/display user interface.  I did rotate the screen 90-degrees and, indeed, what was on the screen the rotated (in the most literal sense).  However, the rotate function is not integrated.  The touch pad does not rotate to match and Windows and the Firefox do not display in a user friendly fashion.  The side window frame slider bar doesn’t move, so in the 90-deg state, the slider bar is at the bottom of the screen.  Also, the programs do not resize to match the screen ratio.  So, I had to slide the screen left and right to see the whole window and the window did not span the entire height of the display.  I was quite disappointed, because it seems to me it would be easy to rotate the screen and then apply the screen ratio, like you would when choosing a different a screen resolution.  As for the touch pad, rescale that translation.  Haha, well, these situations could remedied with graphics and touch pad driver updates.  I look forward to them, I hope …

Santa Delivered — HP Mini 1000

I guess I was nice this year because Santa delivered :). I didn’t get the Vivienne Tam Edition, but I did get the HP Mini 1000 Mini-notebook with the 60GB harddrive and bluetooth connectivity. So far I’m surprised by the power of this little notebook. I am able to play standard definition avi files on it.

We’ve place the little notebook in the kitchen next to the telephone. This turns out to be a perfect place for it. So far I set up e-mail, I used it today to look up recipes for Christmas dinner and I researched external laptop sound cards for our entertainment laptop. It was convenient to have the little notebook on the counter so I could browse while waiting on food to cook. The small footprint also it made it fit nicely on the little bit of corner space we have where our phone is.

A few things about the notebook that you may want to know before purchasing. It is strictly wireless. There is no Ethernet port for a wired connection. It comes with Windows XP installed so you don’t have to worry about the little laptop barfing on Vista. I went ahead and moved the windows bar to the left side and had it auto-hide. I found this to be a good use of the small screen. It also came installed with Microsoft Works, which has everything you need for home and student use — word processor, spreadsheets, presentations, e-mail, and a calendar. The keyboard takes a little getting used to. True the keyboard is about the same size of a standard keyboard, but some of the keys do double duty when combined with the function key.

I don’t recommend this little laptop as a main computer. I think you are far better getting a full-sized laptop if this is your first or only computer. It is a great secondary and travel laptop. It does basic computing and supports music and standard definition videos nicely. I also recommend getting the 10-in form factor. Web pages display nicely and are readable. It also passed the online manga test ;p. Now if only I could rotate the image on the screen like an iPod touch or the iPhone so I could get a full page of manga or a book on the screen. The screen is about the same size as a paperback book and the arrows keys are in the right place currently for page flipping ;). Hint, hint … it could be fudged with a software update … Though, the hinge doesn’t allow the device to open the full 180-degrees … maybe the next gen …???

Home Server Update Pushed Through Updater

Last week I struggled for a few hours to update my home server software. I’m not actually sure I managed to since each time I tried to install the software I would get an error saying I had to delete the old software to install the new. Things got so messed up that I ended up deleting all the software and had to reload my laptop again with the original software which started the whole process again. In the end, my console interface went away, which was a bummer. Anyhow, tonight, the HP Updater had an update for the home server that didn’t barf. I still have no idea, though, whether that was the update that I struggled with last week.

Windows Home Server: a Flop?

That is what this Washington Post blog posting guesses.  I wouldn’t be surprised because like media connect, I imagine that non-tech people don’t understand the point of having a home server and how it would fit into their home network, that is, if they even understand that they have a home network.

I have an HP Home Server and most of the time I love it.  This article says setting-up a home server is daunting.  I don’t recall it being difficult at all, with the exception of setting up the system passwords and updating the system.  What I recall is that the home server pretty much set-up itself.  Getting the rest of the computers to recognize that they were all on the same network was problematic and largely an issue that we’ve attributed to Vista quirks.

However, for non-techy people, an internal or external network drive will take care of most of the necessary functions of a home network.  For the most part that is how we us our home server.  We rarely use the media connect interface.  It only recently became usable with our XBox360 for our music and avi files.  So basically, home server provides a user interface that. as far as I can tell, doesn’t add much to the user experience unless you have the proper equipment — an XBox360 or a media connect box.  In the absence of these, it’s easier to have a beefed up PC to play media files via software like iTunes, Media player, and various other media players software.

So what happened here?  Well … I think that the main problem is an inappropriate target market.  Most people simply don’t need a home server.  However, if they had scaled back the volume expectations and went up market to tech, video and audio enthusiasts, and downloaders, they may have had some success.  I imagine, though, most of these folks home-brewed something anyway like we did before we got the home server.  And like I said, we don’t even use the home server interface and due to security concerns, we don’t serve our files to a website, so in essence we are using our home server as a 2TB network drive.

So what would be useful to me?

  • Integrated BitTorrent client with search and episode organization — Vuze is almost there
  • Some visual analytics around usage for video, audio, and data files.  I would also like to see some organization around age to ease the clean-up of old files
  • For the home server to hold the master table, so all the computers know that there is only one home network.

Still, though, this type of system would not be useful to many people.  The BitTorrent client could be stand alone software along with the analytics I would like to see (I imagine if I searched for them, these tools already exist.)  My final thoughts on this are the common consumer knows how to handle all files on one huge hardrive within one computer and use this computer as a “server” using the file sharing functionality within Windows.  Moving this functionality outside of the main computer doesn’t make sense or seem necessary to them.  As for sharing files on the web, it should be as easy as right clicking on the content and selecting an option that says, “Post on the Web.”  Of course, at set-up, the user already set-up a domain.   The real problem is users have too many files and lose track of what they have.  What the user really needs is an easy way to “see” what they’ve got.  This is a matter of tagging, search, and visualization.  This type of functionality probably should be built into an OS.   So whoever figures out how to do this in a manner that pleases consumers will have a quite breakthrough on their hands.