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Comment Re:Ethan Hunt (Score 1) 660

> And for 99% of my communications, I don't care if someone listens.
> There really isn't anything of any importance -- which is why no
> one's listening. It simply has no value to them at that capacity.

Nice attempt at rationalization. Fact is, that you DO NOT decide
what's valuable to someone else nor whether somebody will be

Comment Re:Because H.264 / MPEG-4 AVC is Mature! (Score 1) 619

I have ST:TOS downloaded in SD with XviD, that was before the blu ray release, and I am not planning to redownload it. I probably will redownload TNG and DS9 because I have those in the 175MB format (lower quality than 350MB of course) when I decide to record them to tape (I am in the process of slowly copying my DVD-Rs to LTO tape).

$700 is a lot of money, especially if you are going to watch mostly cable TV which is analog and SD for now (there are some HD channels, but for those you need DVB-C receiver with HD support (very expensive) and a decoder card, while you can split the analog signal to however many TVs you want, which we have 4 not counting my VCRs, though I now use a digital receiver with my VCRs, I can see the channels I want even without the card, but in SD).

Yes, HD TV shows are in h.264, so is anime (though sometimes even the SD version of anime is in h264), but SD TV shows are still XviD/avi. The release groups probably know that they can use h264 for DVD rips, but choose not to, because XviD/avi is more common.

Just like audio codecs - ogg and aac may be better, but you can be sure that mp3 will be supported by almost all players (portable and not). So, most of the music is available in mp3 format, because all of the players play it, and all of the players play it because it is so common. When you rip the CD for your own use in a portable player, you can choose whatever codec your player supports, be it ogg, aac or even flac, but if you wanted to release that rip to the internet, you will probably have to choose mp3 because it is more widely supported and transcoding from one lossy codec to another degrades the quality, be it audio or video.

Xvid video with the same quality takes more space than h264 video, but I don't think that people would run to the stores to buy h264 compatible players just so they can download 300MB instead of 350MB. However, I think that xvid will be dropped only when h264 compatible players become as common as divx dvd players are now. Remember - SD TV shows still get released so you can fit 1-2 episodes on a CD-R (350 or 700MB, but usually not 800MB for example) and DVD rips of moves are release in 1 or 2 CD format, usually 1-2 files 700MB each, though now DVDR drives and discs cost about the same as CDR drives and discs.


Submission + - Singer in grocery store ordered to pay royalties (

yog writes: An assistant at a grocery store in Clackmannanshire, Scotland, was ordered by the Performing Right Society (PRS) to obtain a performer's license and to pay royalties because she was informally singing popular songs while stocking groceries. The PRS later backed down and apologized. This after the same store had turned off the radio after a warning from the PRS. We have entered an era where music is no longer an art for all to enjoy, but rather a form of private property that must be regulated and taxed like alcohol. "Music to the ears" has become "dollars in the bank".

Submission + - Google to Take on iTunes? (

An anonymous reader writes: Multiple sources say Google is preparing to launch Google Audio. According to people familiar with the matter, Google has been securing content from record companies. Is Google about to go head-to-head with Apple's iTunes?

Comment Re:125 MORE years until the US gets time... (Score 3, Informative) 429

French is a useful and underrated language. It's the most predominant language on the European continent in areas without good English speakers. In my experience, native Italians are ok at English, the Spanish and Portuguese are great, but the French are very poor (I'm less sure about Eastern Europe). German is practically English already.

It's also an official language of international diplomacy (it comes *before* Spanish translations on US Passports), and is spoken in a lot of North African and Caribbean nations, so you have more places available to comfortably vacation =)

Submission + - Open Source: 'World should follow France' (

An anonymous reader writes: One of Europe's leading open source experts, Roberto Di Cosmo — Italian professor of computer science in Paris and former head of French government's open source policy group — talks in this interview with about the massive returns and control the French government got from various open source projects and why the rest of the world will have to follow the French example. There's also a video of the interview.

Comment Re:So? (Score 0) 239

That's nice, but here we're not talking about letters to your Congressional representative, we're talking about comments to be filed as part of a formal FCC rulemaking process.

They're both communications with a rule-making body of the government. I fail to see any difference between them.

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