I'm sure that Microsoft is working hard to incorporate the Viiv with its Media Center software, and they're definitely keeping their eye on Apple's Front Row. I think that with Viiv and some more bug fixes, Microsoft can definitely leap ahead at this point. If you don't get the big picture: imagine your VCR/DVD rig replaced by a machine that can record media directly to a hard drive, in HD no less, and even easier to access than a DVR, plus integration with all your other crap. Integration was a big theme at Bill Gates's keynote speech, where he started out with his vision (which I've heard for two years now) that all your electronics can be centrally controlled. He managed to officially unveil Urge, which my readers should know is M$'s partnership with MTV to deliver a more interactive radio experience. He's also partnering with DirecTV for more Media Center content, and it wouldn't be complete without a demo of Windows Vista. The Xbox 360 stuff was rather lackluster, but at least they showed up! Sony didn't bring anything PS3-related with them. Google will have its big day on Friday, where they're expected to announce the ability for consumers to purchase video content on Google Video among other things. However, don't expect them to entertain speculation of a Google PC, which I had already figured to be way too early to think about, as they have denied all claims.
A day at CES is just too big to fit in two paragraphs, and I still have just a couple more highlights to get to. Most people were unimpressed with the Rokr E1, but now there's the E2, which in addition to using Windows Media Player has removed the song cap, incorporated USB 2.0, and is using better memory card technology. It's a huge step up, but how much will it cost? USRobotics showed off a USB Internet Speakerphone, which is neat because it reflects everyone jumping on the VoIP bandwagon with an affordable device. I'm listening to the good podcasts and will keep you updated as I hear more stuff than I can find on Engadget, and I'd like to plug yesterday's Rocketboom video podcast for showing off pulse points, which are basically self-contained intranets to give extremely fast, relevant content to the people in the area. I can definitely see this growing, so it's worth a look (though Amanda Congdon usually looks better).
The biggest movie news today would probably have to be the SAG award nominations. I haven't seen enough movies this year to make my picks, but if you have maybe you should make some of your own. Speaking of award shows though, we now know that Jon Stewart will be hosting this year's Oscars because not only is he hilarious, but a lot of the big movies last year were rather political and that just happens to be his area of expertise. CES bore witness to the unveiling of several Blu-ray and HD-DVD players that I felt were unnecessary to really talk much about, though the the latter ones are cheaper, but I though you all might want to see Sony's initial line-up of Blu-ray releases, only a few of which are actually good. I don't think that the included Java games will be enough to boost Blu-ray sales for Stealth though. Yahoo Movies has a decent trailer for the upcoming teen flick She's the Man, which may actually be fun, but it may cause you to ponder how trailers are made. Well now one such editor tells all about the process and it's extremely informative, and a little scary. I have some pictures to leave you with. A couple are from Sunshine, the thriller with a slightly impressive cast (including Cillian Murphy). The other two are from Superman Returns, and since I'm so hyped up for it I might as well just post the one with Lex:
I'm going to do the Thursday Threesome this week since it had a Texas theme:
Onesome: Hook-- Just to get us back in the swing of things after the holidays: when you're at home, where do your keys hang out, on a hook by the door? ...or do they have a special place? ...or do you find them wherever they landed the last time you walked in
I just toss them in my dresser drawer with my watch and wallet. I think a hook might be a little too obvious, and it's unnecessary for me.
Twosome: 'em-- Do you use contractions like " 'em " in your daily conversations? ...or do people use a contraction or phrase that particularly bugs you past the point of rationality?
Actually, I do. I guess it's the little Texan inside of me, but I do it completely unknowingly. I can't really think of a particular contraction that I hate.
Threesome: Horns-- On the Horns of a dilemma: if you had only one movie you could nominate for the Academy Awards for 2005, which would it be? ...and why? The screenplay? ...the lead player(s)? ...the setting?
That's unfair for me to answer since I haven't seen enough movies this year. I want to say Batman Begins just because it showed us that comic book movies aren't just for comic book geeks. They can be very real and extremely well-made.