Saturday, November 17, 2007

Charter Cable's New Line-UP


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(Screenshot 1) (Screenshot 2)

As "Bones" said in one of the Star Trek Movies, "Engineers are always Changing things...".

Well, so are Cable Companies. Charter cable, in it's infinite wisdom, decided to throw out the "Old" cable channel Line-up and replace it with a New "Subjective" Format. This means all the news channels in a grouping, all the sports channels in a grouping, all the movie channels in a grouping, all the children channels in a grouping, and so on. And nothing between 74 and 99.

Really clever.

Well, computers to the rescue, especially if it's Linux.

I run an ATI TV pci card in my present OS FC-6 (Teah, I know FC-7 is out, but I'm in no hurry. My son is still on FC-5 and it's working nicely, thank you.).

Tvtime is the app that runs the Ati card. The TV Screen output is easily resizable, so I decided to create a Desktop Background to show the new channels as a frame to the reduced TV window. Using the Photoshop like Linux program called The GIMP (Graphic Image Manipulation Program) that was pretty easy to do. See screenshot 1.

Since the focus is with TV output, the backround is just a background, a press of the "f" switches the output to fullscreen. See screenshot 2. Yeah, that's my wife's shopping channel, what of it?

Anyway, to paraphrase from another TV icon, Felix the Cat (my oldest son's favorite), "the wonderful things he does with his wonderful bag of magic tricks..." That's pretty much what Linux is about: Lots of little handy tools to do the wonderful things you can do when you control the computer. If you zoom in on screenshot 1, you can see the Gnome Toolbar (Yeah, it's on top, just like the Mac) holding all the handy little tools I like to use with a click of the mouse.

A Quick Tour of the Linux GNOME Toolbar

You probably recognize the GoogleEarth globe and Firefox tail icon up there. To the right of Firefox is the Tv icon for TVtime and next to that is the Update manager that checks for updates. Going left from Firefox are gThumb image viewer, Inkscape SVG Vector Illustrator, next is a notepad with a pencil which is my favorite Text Editor: GEdit, followed by a window like icon that represents the console or terminal (kinda like the Dos Command Line), next is the GIMP, followed by Dictionary (you can guess what that's for) , next is a little camera that takes screenshots like the ones above, next to the camera is the Wordprocessor part of the Open Office Suite, next is the Email manager followed by a traffic-cone like thing that is the best video viewing program ever made for Linux Videolan, GoogleEarth, Next is GXine Video Player which handles online streaming content like the traffic cams from Cal Trans, and last on the My toolbar is Konqueror the Gnome File and Web Browser.

That's it for today.

Have a Good One!
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1 comment:

Nenny Derex said...

Hello. I find your blog very interesting. As far as I know Charter Cable specializes in telecommunications services. I saw the customers’ feedbacks about the company on this great site www.pissedconsumer.com. I think that a company should provide quality products if the prices are quite high. It is not an issue with Charter Cable.