Blog News

It gets better…


My HD Recorder KISS DP-558 is dead. So is the Kiss website.

Kiss Technology is dead

After 4 years of usage, my Kiss DP-558 recorder is dead. Done. No longer working. And the Kiss website is down as well. Cisco/Linksys has taken over and shut down Kiss Technologies. More’s a pity that they never *did* anything with what they bought…

A mains current failure that came and went made sure that it died an agonizing death, always switching on and then switching off again. I’m sorry to see you go mate, you earned the ‘wife-acceptance’ trophy, which is hard to come by.

So I’m looking for a replacement. I’ve finally settled on a Emtec S800 (I originally bought the S800H, but this only has a digital tuner, not an analog, and we’re still (stubbornly) analog.

Still, no more Electronic Program Guide to pick and choose from. And still no H.264 (which the S800H did have) codec support. And no more having something decent looking under your televison that fitted in with the Hi-Fi equipment.



Shiny Stuff: Sony Reader PRS-505

After more than a year of watching it go for the same price on Ebay without the price dropping, I finally cracked and bought me a Sony Ebook Reader, model PRS-505. The day after I ordered, Jeff Bezos from Amazon announces that the Kindle is now available worldwide for the price of about 200 euros, about the same price I bought my reader from Ebay. Not sure if I am happy about that or not.

Perhaps happy – maybe there will be more english books available to buy on our side of the ocean ? Sometimes I want to buy an ebook and get a refusal. Something to do with rights that can be sold seperately on either side of the ocean… and this is sometimes not done on both sides, or at the same time, so only one side of the ocean is served, so to speak.

Very frustrating, that is: seeing an ebook you want to buy in the eshop, wanting to buy that ebook and not being able to buy the frickin digital file.

First impressions of my Sony PRS-505: it’s small, and fairly heavy. It’s got a Sony memory stick reader, but also a SD card slot. Guess which card is cheaper to buy ? You guessed right, the SD card. I slotted in a 2GB card.

The buttons on the side are functional, but hard to press. But the e-ink page is phenomenal !

Once you get over the page refresh blackout (every time you change a page, the screen refreshes) it’s a delight to read. The e-ink paper is very sharp and clear. It charges over USB. So far I read a few hundred pages, and the battery level hasn’t even budged !

Using Calibre, a cross-platform ebook manager, I can organise my ebooks on my computer, and then transfer the one I want to read to my Sony ebook.

So far, so good. I’ve been taking it along on road trips and short vacations, and it’s holding up well.

Blog News

Traffic jam without accidents

I always wondered about those traffic jams that have no accident to show for it – you just seem to suddenly slow down, stop, sit in a traffic jam and suddenly it dissolves without anything really to show for it.

Seems that the cause is a driver that brakes too suddenly, and this shockwave travels backwards, causing other drivers to brake, which eventually brings those behind you to a stop.