One type of technology that definitely brings people a lot of entertainment, enjoyment, and even social bonding is video gaming platforms. Ever since Atari and other primitive video game platforms first came out about thirty years ago, the video gaming industry has tried to make better and better devices to keep people interested in all the have to offer.There have been a number of breakthroughs in video gaming technology over the years, and as a result we now have video game platforms that have built in hard drives, optical disc drives, enormous amounts of RAM, and even multiple computer processors working in parallel. In the past, the major competitors in the video gaming industry have been Atari and Intellivision, and later Nintendo and Sega, but now it’s pretty much come down to Microsoft’s Xbox 360 and Sony’s Play Station 3. Both of these two products have a lot in common, including the fact that they both have multiple processors, built in hard drives, optical disc drive, the ability to connect to the Internet, and stunning graphics that can reach HDTV resolutions.One of the features that they both have in common is the ability to play high definition DVD’s onto HDTV sets, making them high definition DVD players (as well as normal DVD plays and CD players). Even these High Definition DVD formats are in competition because the Play Station 3 plays Sony’s Blu-ray high def DVD format and the Xbox 360 plays Toshiba’s HD-DVD format. The way in which these two devices accomplishes this are a little bit different though. That’s because the Xbox 360’s ability to play high def DVD’s comes from an optional HD-DVD drive that can be attached to the unit via cable, and the Play Station 3 comes with a Blu-ray drive installed.The fact that these two devices play different High Def DVD’s has brought them right into the middle of a format war between Blu-ray and HD-DVD. Both formats essentially accomplish the same thing (although there are technical reasons why Blu-ray may be superior), but can’t be played on each other’s players and disc drives. For that reason, it’s generally agreed that only one of the formats can survive the format war.Both Sony and Toshiba (with Microsoft’s help) have been trying to gain an edge in the market for their respective formats, and both of these video game systems have become pawns in the format war. It was hoped that the Play Station 3 would promote the benefits of the Blu-ray format to people who would buy a Play Station anyway and then watch Blu-ray discs on it as an afterthought. The problem with this strategy has been that the extra cost of including a Blu-ray drive is reflected in the Play Station 3’s price and many gamers don’t want to pay the extra money. The Xbox 360, on the other hand, has avoided that pitfall by making its HD-DVD drive an optional separate purchase.All format wars aside though, these to gaming platforms are very impressive pieces of technology.
Digital TV is a type of technology that has a number of benefits, but is causing a fair amount of frustration for a number of people. Digital TV actually isn’t a particularly new form of technology. In fact, it has been in widespread use since the early nineteen nineties when satellite TV companies like Echostar (Dish Network) and DIRECTV started to offer affordable satellite TV service with dishes small enough as not to dominate the entire yard. Digital TV became portable in the late nineteen nineties with the introduction of the DVD, and is now slated to become the exclusive over the air TV format as of February 17, 2009.This conversion to digital TV is what has a lot of people generally annoyed. Converting over the air TV to exclusively digital format would provide viewers with better pictures and access to an on screen program guide. It would also free up over the air bandwidth that could then be used for emergency services communications and for wide spread implementation of wireless Internet access. The trouble with digital TV comes from two different forms of resistance. First, there is the TV viewing public who are still largely watching TV sets that don’t have the digital tuners necessary to watch over the air digital TV. Second, there are the TV stations themselves who don’t want to spend the money to switch their equipment over to transmit digital TV.As far as the TV viewing public goes, there are actually relatively few problems with switching their equipment over to over the air digital TV signals. That’s because there are relatively few people- about twenty one million to be exact- who rely on over the air TV for their TV entertainment. The rest either do without TV or subscribe to cable TV or satellite TV, both of which presumably provide receiver boxes capable of receiving digital TV signals and then converting them over to the analog signals that the TV sets can understand. Other converter boxes that can pick up digital over the air TV signals and convert them to analog are being made available to consumers. Purchase of these converters are being subsidized by the federal government through coupons that are worth forty dollars when they go towards the purchase of a digital to analog converter. Because the converter boxes are expected to cost sixty to seventy dollars, consumers will still have to use some of their own money. There’s also the very real possibility that many consumers will want to buy new TV sets anyway, in which case they’ll probably just get digital TV sets. The real challenge is letting TV viewers know that the change will happen so that they can prepare for it.Broadcasters are tougher cases in many ways. That’s because they’ve been dragging their feet on the conversion for year and as a result, the conversion keeps getting pushed back. For example, the conversion has been in the works since 1996 and the first conversion was scheduled for 1998. The refusal to make the change on the parts of broadcasters has gotten in the way of a number of different telecommunications initiatives. These broadcasters seem to forget that the American people own the frequencies on which they broadcast and can take away their licenses at any time.
There are some new developments in the war between Toshiba’s HD-DVD format and Sony’s Blu-ray. Toshiba recently announced the release of a HD-DVD player capable of playing High Definition video in 1080p resolution, and Sony says that it will release a Blu-ray recorder in Japan by the end of the year. Both of these moves are meant to give each company an advantage in the competition to have their High Definition video disc format come out on top.For anyone not familiar with this issue, Blu-ray and HD-DVD are both High Definition Television Digital Video Discs (DVD’s) and are competing in the marketplace to become the dominant format. Both use blue laser technology to pack more data onto a disc than standard DVD technology- which uses a red laser- is capable of. The fact that they can deal with more data makes both formats up to the task of storing High Definition Video content, but there are some pretty major differences between them. For example each side of an HD-DVD can hold fifteen gigabytes of data or thirty gigabytes total, while a Blu-ray disc can hold twenty five gigabytes per side or fifty gigabytes total.Looking at the difference in the capacities of the two formats, it should be a no brainer that the Blu-ray format should win out in this war, but it’s not quite that simple. Blu-ray disc players tend to be more expensive than HD-DVD players, and each format has the backing of some pretty major players in the home entertainment electronics and computer industries. For example, Blu-ray has the support of a number electronics manufacturers including Sony, Dell, Apple, Philips, Sharp, HP, and many others. It also has the support of a number of movie studios including Paramount, Fox, Disney, MGM, and Warner The HD-DVD format has the support of only three studios- Warner, Universal, and Paramount. (Paramount and Warner are hedging their bets in this war by releasing titles in both formats.) The fact that so many more studios are backing Blu-ray is another factor that bodes well for it’s triumph, but that gain is largely offset by the fact that Microsoft has is backing HD-DVD by providing support for the format through it’s new Vista operating system and making the Xbox HD-DVD compatible.The HD-DVD/Blu-Ray format war has had an adverse effect on the adoption of High Definition Television technology in general. Many consumers are waiting before buying a player in one format or another because they don’t want to be stuck with the loser in a few years which is what happened to people who invested in Betamax video cassette technology over twenty years ago. As a result, backers of both technologies are angling to give their’s a foothold, which is what we’re seeing now.The introduction Toshiba’s new HD-DVD player that can handle 1080p will probably just make HD-DVD more competitive with Blu-ray, because Blu-ray players are already 1080p capable. At present though, this is something of a moot point because there isn’t really anything to watch in 1080p resolution anyway. Sony’s Blu-ray recorder could give the technology a leg up. After all, if you can record in a format, then you have something to watch in that format, which will make it more attractive.What the industry really needs to do is create devices that are compatible with both HD-DVD and Blu-ray discs. The first one to do that will see immediately see huge profits and prevent any one format form monopolizing the High Definition Television DVD market.
Ever since the Blu-ray HDTV DVD format barged into the market right on the heels of Toshiba’s introduction of the HD-DVD format the prevailing wisdom in the home entertainment electronics industry has been that only one of these two formats would be able to survive the inevitable format war between them. The inescapable logic of the fact that in order for only one to survive, the other has to perish has led many consumers to put off the purchase of any high def DVD technology at all because of the aversion to being left with obsolete and therefore useless technology.The possibility of being left with the embarrassment and lost money of having purchased a losing technology is not without precedent. In fact, one of the reasons why consumers have been so reluctant to purchase either an HD-DVD player or a Blu-ray player is because many of them still have memories of the war between the VHS and Betamax video cassette formats back in the early nineteen eighties. Eight track tapes provide another cautionary tale.There is one fundamental difference between the current high def DVD format war and the video cassette and audio cassette format wars: Betamax was a different size and shape than VHS and eight track tapes were shaped differently from the winning audio cassette format, while the diameter and thickness of Blu-ray discs and HD-DVD’s are identical. This means that while those warring magnetic tape formats weren’t physically capable of being played on the same cassette deck, there’s absolutely now reason why you can’t at least load Blu-ray discs and HD-DVD’s into the same drive.The fact that Blu-ray discs and HD-DVD’s have identical dimensions (and dimensions that are identical to CD’s and conventional DVD’s as well) has prompted some companies to find ways to work around their incompatibilities. For example, Warner Brothers has come up with a way to print a movie in Blu-ray format on one side of a disc and the same movie in HD-DVD format on the other side of the same disc. If this format becomes mainstream, consumers will be able to buy high def DVD’s regardless of which type of player they have and without paying any attention to which format they’re buying.LG and Samsung have also come up with a way to work around the incompatibilities by producing a device that can read discs in both formats. These dual disc format high def DVD players cost a little bit more than normal high def DVD players, but take care of all of the compatibility concerns.These technological developments have prompted the industry to rethink the wisdom that only one format can survive. Rather than assuming that one format will go extinct, many sales projections take into account the possibility that both will be around for a long time. If this is the case it will be because these other technologies that bridge the gap between the two formats have thrived and been embraced by consumers. And as far as Toshiba and Sony go, while neither will dominate the high def DVD market the way they both hoped they would, they should take some solace that neither will end up losing completely either.
One trend of television technology these days is to make televisions as small as possible. Many companies; including Sony, Dish Network, Toshiba, Samsung, Apple, and several lesser known companies; have produced portable video devices over the past few years. Generally these devices are designed to download video content from the Internet or a Digital Video Recorder to be stored on their hard drives and viewed when the user gets around to it. These devices are great for when their owners can choose in advance what they want to watch. They’re particularly useful for people on the go who don’t have a lot of time to sit around and watch TV at home, but may have the time watch on a subway, airplane, or while standing in line waiting for something.Now, it’s possible to get television content in real time thanks to new technology that allows people to watch television on their mobile phones. Like many other television trends this is especially popular in Japan where mobile phones are extremely popular and people use them for a lot of different things. For example, there are a little more than 90 million mobile phone users in Japan who, on average, replace their phones as often as every year and a half. Many Japanese mobile phone users are in the habit of using the devices to surf the Internet, check and send email, and for online shopping. All of these trends make Japan the perfect testing ground for this technology.Unfortunately there are some serious barriers to this technology taking off. Not enough people use the service overall to really create a market for advertising along with the program content. Right now the program content for mobile phones is free, just like over the air TV broadcasts, but of course since the content has to travel over wireless network, it costs more money to provide. A lot of people in television broadcasting and the wireless phone markets are hoping for a way to somehow combine mobile phone TV service with e-commerce. That way the the service would serve as a gateway to revenues from the tendency of the Japanese to shop on their mobile phones. If this actually works out it could serve as a unique market as more and more people have mobile phones capable of watching TV on. In any case this is a unique example of technology that’s emerged and gone public without having any concrete business model of how it’s going to be paid for.Of course, this also begs the question, why not pass on the cost of providing the content on to the mobile phone users who watch? The industry seems to be shying away from that option probably because of a combination of fear that that will alienate users of the service and the widespread agreement that once a business model is agreed upon and implemented, that step will be largely unnecessary.One other development of this technology that we can expect is to see it included in other devices like GPS’s and portable video game units. By extension, we may soon see dedicated mobile television devices or mobile television integrated into some of the portable video devices we see on the market now. In that sense, portable video devices really would be like home entertainment centers in miniature. You could either watch live television or a recording. It would be your choice.
There are a variety of technological factors that are causing the competition between all of the different TV service providers to heat up. The major technological innovation that most of these companies are using to try to attract new subscribers is HDTV. HDTV provides a TV picture that’s a lot like a big screen movie picture, both in shape and level of detail in the picture. It also features a high quality sound format in the form of Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround Sound that uses six total speaker to surround the audience with sound that goes along with what’s happening on the HDTV screen. This combination has drummed up a lot of interest among viewers when it comes to getting this high quality entertainment in their own homes, and all of the major TV service providers are banking on this excitement to boost their subscriber rankings.It should go without saying that, at least theoretically, the TV service provider that can offer the most HDTV channels will be the one to attract that most subscribers. Brining HDTV channels online is easier said than done though. At first, there just weren’t that many HDTV channels available to offer. More recently however, there have been plenty of HDTV channels available, but not every TV service provider has the bandwidth required to transmit as many as they’d like.The bandwidth limitations have been of particular concern to cable TV companies because they simply don’t have as much available bandwidth as the satellite TV companies. This makes it much more difficult for them to offer as many channels as satellite TV companies can. There is a new technology that’s rapidly being implemented by cable companies that could save them from losing the HDTV game though. This technology is called Switched Digital Video and it overcomes the bandwidth limitations by allowing a cable TV provider to transmit only the channel that a subscriber is watching to that subscriber, thereby freeing up its existing bandwidth to offer more channels. This means that a cable TV company can theoretically offer as many HDTV channels as it wants. It also means that cable TV companies will be well prepared to offer even more data intensive TV formats- like 3D HDTV and Ultra HDTV- as they become available.The satellite TV industry has been in a better position to begin with when it comes to offering more HDTV channels, and despite the threat of cable TV companies with their Switched Digital Video technology (which doesn’t work with satellite transmissions incidentally), satellite TV companies can still compete in the realm of HDTV. The approach of satellite TV companies is more of the brute force nature where they increase the amount of bandwidth available to them so that they can devote it to transmitting more HDTV channels. This simply involves launching more satellites.The high level of competition has lead to some strange moves from the companies that are fighting for more subscribers. For example, a cable TV company has repeatedly sued a satellite TV company for claiming to be able to provide more HDTV channels than cable TV can offer. But the cable company claims that with Switched Digital Video it can offer more channels. The cable TV company seems more interested in arguing the point in court than it is in actually implementing the technology that will provide those channels.Like everything else where TV is involved, the results of this competition will be determined by technology, economics, and ultimately human nature.
The world of mobile technology is a quickly changing landscape, with manufacturers vying to satisfy the mobile users’ ever increasing hunger for new features and better equipment at reasonable cost in a viciously competitive market.So what’s new? Who hasn’t heard of the latest incarnation of the most successful, and some would argue still the best, mobile touch phone – the Apple 3G S. It’s faster, has more storage, a better camera that can now take videos, voice control, maps, internet access – the list goes on. It’s also now cheaper.Next up we have Mobile VOIP: Voice Over Internet Protocol – a means of making a phone call from your 3G enabled mobile using the internet to carry the call instead of the mobile network as you normally would. The main advantage is the cost – as most internet access is on a fixed cost, you can use this method to call anywhere else in the world with an internet connection. Savings can be huge; particularly for international calls. Currently Skype (popular for PC to PC phone calls), TruPhone and a company called Fring offer a mobile VoIP service for 3G smart phones.But how are the mobile providers going to keep up with people’s ever increasing desire to watch video and TV live on their devices? The current batch of 3G (3rd Generation) devices are okay, but have their limitations. So, in development is the 4G (4th Generation) mobile. This will give the user not only high quality on-demand video streaming (for TV), but also access to broadband internet, video chat and fast download of video and music content. A great mobile entertainment center for those who live their lives out of a suitcase.Lastly, an interesting, yet potentially irritating craze has developed taking advantage of one of the most used features of mobile technology – Blue tooth. Initially intended as an easy method by which two Blue tooth enabled devices could exchange messages and information over short distances wireless, it now has an added function: ‘blue jacking’. ‘Blue jacking’ simply involves sending un-solicited (and anonymous) messages to another person’s device within range of the perpetrator. One regular ‘blue jacker’ was quoted as saying, “The priceless expression on the face of my first victim as he tried to work out what was going on has turned me into a regular blue jacker.” That being said, there are easy ways to prevent yourself being ‘jacked’ – turn off your Blue tooth when you’re not using it: don’t make your device discoverable – but a lot of people don’t bother.
An increasing number of businesses, municipalities, and individuals are seeing the benefits of wireless Internet access. It’s really no wonder that this type of technology is growing increasingly popular because of its flexibility and the fact that it offers an economical way to put a lot of different devices and their users onto the Internet or a Local Area Network. Wireless hot spots are great for flexible use and varying numbers of users. After all, how could there be a better way to supply Internet access to all of the computers in an office, as well as the laptops and Blackberry type devices that employees bring in and use on a variable basis? The same flexibility makes wireless hot spots an attractive thing to install in coffee shops, airports, libraries, and even homes.There are currently several widely available varieties of wireless Internet access. The most common by far is Wi-Fi. Wi-Fi is a short range type of wireless networking that’s commonly associated with the wireless hot spots you’d find in a coffee shop or bookstore. It’s extremely cost effective and easy to set up just by hooking a wireless router into a broadband Internet connection.G3 is another popular way to get onto the Internet wirelessly. A G3 network uses technology that’s similar to the cellular technology that allows for the used of mobile phones. G3 technology allows smart phones and laptops to connect to the Internet over cell phone towers and while moving at extremely fast speeds like on a train or in a car(the Doppler effect can ruin some types of wireless connections even at relatively slow speeds) and over a very wide area. It’s been the technology of choice for professionals who need to stay connected while on the go.Now there’s a type of wireless technology that could serve as severe competition to G3. This type of technology is called WiMax and it combines many of the best points of both Wi-Fi and G3 technologies. Like G3, WiMax can operate over extremely large distances- up to 30 miles. Like Wi-Fi, WiMax is extremely effective indoors- which is something that G3 technology doesn’t do so well. WiMax is also much faster than Wi-Fi. The combination of speed and large coverage area makes WiMax extremely effective for providing large numbers of people with high speed Internet access.One thing that WiMax doesn’t do as well as G3 is provide mobile Internet access. That’s because at the frequencies that WiMax carriers are currently licensed to operate at the Doppler effect is an issue, while the frequencies that G3 is licensed to use aren’t as effected by the movement of the user.However, this shortcoming of WiMax compared to G3 is simply a regulatory issue. WiMax would be just as good for mobile devices as G3 is if it was licensed to use the same frequencies. And there lies the major explanation for why it hasn’t been widely adopted yet- lobbying on the part of companies that have a lot invested in G3 networks and don’t want the competition of a technology that could serve more people in a wider variety of ways.Of course there is the hope that the two technologies will be able to coexist- even possibly in the same devices- so that they can be used in the situations that suit them best.
Nowadays technology has developed so far that you can actually recreate the magic of theaters at home, and you have ample systems that can help you do that. Home theater refers to a setup of audio and video equipment in your home that tries to duplicate the movie theater experience. A home entertainment theater system is a home entertainment system intended for the domestic environment and capable of processing in an effective manner; audio, video and graphics information. Large size screens, High Definition Televisions or a projection system with movie screen to project the image on are used as video displays. Stereo systems have also become very prominent by using front speakers with or without some form of woofer or sub woofer, as well as rear and side speakers, and have become prevalent particularly for sound systems used to reproduce sound in home theater video systems for playing back video motion pictures and similar program material.The most important thing that you need to consider before you make the purchase of a home theater system is the actual requirement that you are looking at. Most of us look at simple systems that can recreate the magic but at a lower level, so that your neighbors are not disturbed by the sound that is generated from bigger systems. At its most complex, you can indeed have a custom built home theater that costs tens of thousands of dollars with a high end video projector, latest DVD player and Blu-Ray Disc player, network media player, separate amplifiers for each channel controlled by a master preamp or controller, in wall speakers, and a couple of sub woofers that can just about shake down the entire neighborhood. This is not only going to cost you a lot but also create a bit of disharmony in the neighborhood, as your neighbors are not going to react very nicely of the sound ended up waking them in the middle of the night.As you decide the type of entertainment system that you would like to invest in, you need to first decide the exact room that you intend to place this in. A room which is not used for regular activity would be most suitable for such a system, so that it causes least disturbance to normal activity around the house. In fact lots of people think that such theaters are very expensive and have lots of equipments and cables running all over the place. This is not true. In most homes, though, a home entertainment theater does not consist of an expensive custom installation, or a lot of money. A home theater can be something as simple as a 27-inch TV, a basic DVD player and/or HiFi VCR, an inexpensive stereo or an AV receiver, and simple speakers. Whatever type of system you end up with, as long as it provides the entertainment options you need and like, then it is certainly your “Home Theater”.
Did you know what the latest ‘must have’ elite entertainment could bis in vogue? You may now find psychic entertainers at premiere profile corporate banquets as well as at exclusive events.A clairvoyant is no not just only for spooky parties! Sixth Sense Entertainers and their paranormal are enjoying their skills emerging from the closet and being on complete public display. Psychic clairvoyant can be found today out in the main stream, entertaining event’s and corporate clients in the most of events and corporate events, not just at private friends parties.How does it work?
Your guest/client can quiz the psychic a question about any issue going on in his or her lives, give a palm print, a personal possession or even a sample of their handwriting if graphology is used and Aura reading. The psychic may use different tools to produce a reading such as: Tarot, Astrology, Palmistry, Psychometry and even Graphology. Your guests may then often react in a very positive way to their psychic consultation. Both guest and clients appear increasingly attracted to this old world form of entertainment with a real up to date angle rather than the more traditional. Guest and clients at celebrations and high brow events are equally enjoying their experience with the unexplained and very much relishing doing so.Why is this?
Simply because- it’s all about them!
They may often delight in the peace, pampering and uplifting experience that will often stay with them long after their psychic has entertained them. Unlike other forms of entertainment that are viewed or experienced and then quickly discarded, a psychic consultation will often remain in your guest minds as a moving, fun & and memorable event. Readings may be performed privately in a quiet room or space privately for maximum enjoyment.Dealing with Skeptics?
It appears that the most ardent skeptics and business folk are enjoying this psychic gift as much as regular believers. Who doesn’t glance at their astro sign predictions from time to time? Who secretly enjoys the luxury pass time of obtaining a psychic reading on a regular basis? You may perhaps be quite surprised to know that many psychics have persons from all spheres of life among their clients, from ‘A Listers’ – librarians, top flight business people to entrepreneurs, they are even hired by some of the planets top companies to help with matters such as head hunting the right employee for an important position!It may appear odd to some in our time of high tech technology and fast pace living that psychics are very well established in our times and the fascination in the paranormal which shows no signs of ending any time now.Will my guest/clients like this entertainment?
Consider this, many of us have at least a vague understanding of psychic ability and the paranormal and unknown area is as popular today as any time in history. The majority off people have had their palm read, obtained an astrology report and even law enforcement agencies world wide are known to have used the use of a psychic from time to time. In the past even our politicians and world leaders through history such as Winston Chruchill have engaged the services of psychics and astrologers, this fact is very well documented. We all long to to hear about ourselves and find it evoking to be told personal future predictions. An pro psychic will get a balance, between light and fun for you function and entertaining and engaging the party guest’s on a personal level.Choose wisely. Avoid simply engage anyone, take the time to locate the best psychic for your event, preferably with proven experience at entertaining at such event in the now long gone times. Take care that you engage an genuine, ethical and trained and pro psychic to enthrall your personal guests and I would guess- your preferred form of entertainment will go down extremely well indeed with your special guests and priority business clients.Will a party psychic entertainer be well received?
Whatever your personal opinion on psychic world, of this you can be reasonably sure: your party guests will be talking about your special event & unique party entertainment for a long into the far reaching future.