View blog reactions Waiting for Speedway Fowler: Where Your TV is Headed

Sunday, April 30, 2006


Where Your TV is Headed

Picture this:

It's 2010. The year we make contact.

Okay... not really. Nothing that profound has happened. Instead, let's simply take a look at a few minutes in your life.

You come home from work. You're dragging a little because traffic was a nightmare because they're still working on the Route 146 interchange, though The Powers That Be assure us it will only be another year or so. You grab a quick supper with the family and then you all relax in the Media Room. You're enjoying your new 110" set that's one of the great wave of inexpensive solid state OLED sets made in Bangladesh. You got it for half the price of your previous DLP set and it's twice as large. You think you'd like to watch a new episode of "Star Trek: The Original Series". It's getting great reviews and the computer animations of Kirk, Spock and the rest of the crew are so photo-realistic they're indistinguishable from the original three seasons of the show that were taped back in the 1960's. The only way to tell the difference is that with the current crop of episodes, the special effects are much better, though some fans say that detracts from the series. Your spouse has an idea. She'd like to watch an American Idol-type of competition, only featuring singers strictly from southern New England. You do a quick search and find there are four different series that fit that description. Your daughter can't wait for the latest episode of "Uxbridge", the hot new teen drama that chronicles the lives, loves, suburban angst and ridiculous good looks of the denizens of the Blackstone Valley. Your son is interested in checking out the travel show he made with his friends.

Guess what? You end up watching all those programs. All at the same time. All on the same set.

That's what the future holds. People are doing it now. Creating their own content. Creating their own television shows. Right now its called video podcasting or vlogging, and it's only in its infancy. Five years down the line this will be the mainstream. The technology is already here. CGI Animation is just a few years from creating human features that are indistinguishable from real life. A group of fans working out of a former gas station in Plattsburgh, NY are already making their own Star Trek episodes with quality comparable to the original series. Steve Garfield, a Boston vlogger, does "The Carol and Steve Show", with episodes chronicling his life with his wife and their adventures. And every day more and more people are grabbing cameras, learning editing basics on their computers and going out and creating the shows they want to see.

And yes, we'll be able to watch all those shows at the same time. Monitors have already been developed that let viewers watch two things at once, depending on where they are sitting.

It should be VERY interesting.

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