The Browser History Fell Through a Memory Hole in my Pocket

If not careful, the brogrammers responsible for the attention deficit economy and big data collection will find their work has gone the way of interactive television. People use tools because they are — wait for it —¬†useful. You’re not the customer; you’re the product. A web browser keeps, or kept, a history of where the […]

The Customer Perspective

There’s too much wrong with the FCC — in all its various political, technical, and regulatory aspects — to get into arguments on the line. However, I’d like to point out one small piece of anecdata from Number Two Daughter’s iPhone 6. From the customer’s perspective, Internet access providers are common carriers. Number Two Daughter […]

Please, Sir, May I Have Some More?

Netflix noticed something strange and unexpected among users of their video streaming service: they would watch all of the available episodes of a series before starting a new show, and they would watch for hours on end. They called this consumption pattern binge-watching. What explained this novel behavior? What did it mean, not only for […]

Hasta la Vista, Baby

We’re cancelling DirecTV service. It’s been about a year since purchasing the HDTV and the associated DirecTV package. Meanwhile, our viewing of “normal” television fare has been steadily declining. We hardly ever watch anything live: we have other things to do with our time. And more often than not, the children are selecting shows from […]

DirecTiVo, your return can not be too soon

Our DirecTiVo was dying. Every now and again, frequently at times, it stopped, hung. Maybe it waiting on a bad block on disk. Maybe it was just the heat. But the only option offered by DirecTV was a replacement with their dreaded DVR. My first impression was positive. The guide responded quickly. The on-screen display […]

Navel Gazing

For one of her classes last year, D. wrote a paper which analyzes an effect of the self-absorption of the media, in response to one of the unfounded assertions in the class’s text, that the rise of the Internet and “thousands” of cable channels had fragmented society. She asked, “Do Our Unlimited Choices Limit Our […]

Counterdisintermediation, in an attempt to remain relevant

A famous character once opined, Never underestimate the power of human stupidity. The executives at ABC are determined to prove that axiom by launching a video-on-demand product that does not include the ability to skip the commercials. But those of us who think that we, the viewers, are ABC’s customers are sadly mistaken. We are […]

Cablevision Offers TiVo

CED Magazine reports that Cablevision has signed a deal to market TiVo equipment to DISH and DirecTV customers. Someone’s been reading my journal. “For many satellite customers in our service area, there is significant value in the TiVo product and brand,” said Patricia Gottesman, Cablevision’s executive vice president of product management and marketing, in a […]

No Video on Demand

Because HBO has nothing we want to watch while we wait for The Sopranos, because we’re not that desperate, and because DirecTV makes changing packages simplicity itself, we’ve cancelled our subscription, thereby reducing our monthly costs from $67 to $48, before taxes. I have no idea why we didn’t do this before.