So Much For New Media: Study Shows That Mainstream Media Drives Twitter Trends

twitter trends driven by old media

For all the talk about “new media,” it appears that old media still powers the online trends of today. Last month, HP released the results of a study that showed that user activity and number of followers on Twitter do not contribute strongly to trend creation and its propagation. Instead, mainstream media play a role in most trending topics, and act as a feeder of these trends.

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Relive Your Childhood With YouTube Time Machine

youtube time machine

Hot tubs aren’t the only things that can double as time machines.  Your computer can, too, with a bit of help.  YouTube Time Machine is a website that allows you to pick a year, and watch video content from that year.

The site is pretty simple.  A slider across the top allows you to pick a year (currently from 1860 through 2010).  The content is pre-selected by the folks who run the site, and is fed to you randomly for the year that you select.  You can filter content by type, allowing or disallowing certain categories of content.  The current categories are Video Games, Television, Commercials, Current Events, Sports, Movies, and Music.

youtube time machine full screen

As an example of what you might get, when I selected 1986, I was presented with a video montage of television commercials that aired in 1986, the music video for Bon Jovi’s Livin’ On a Prayer, a trailer for Short Circuit 1, a montage of television show openings, and Marv Albert’s best sports bloopers of 1986.

The site isn’t perfect, but it is still in alpha status.  Often, videos that I skipped kept returning as I skipped through content, and there is no way to list all of the selected videos for a year.  Still, YouTube Time Machine offers a nice journey down memory lane.  Does it bring back memories for you like it does for me?

YouTube Time Machine

Some Good, Some Bad in FCC Ruling that Allows Hollywood to Mess With Your Gear

p2p

We don’t often cover news stories here at 40Tech, but this one bears mentioning.  A recent FCC decision [PDF file from FCC site] now allows the movie industry to disable analog outputs on your equipment in certain situations.  Say what?  Yes, you heard that right- in some cases, a content provider can reach in and mess with your gear.

This started back in 2003, and an FCC ruling concerning Selectable Output Control (SoC).  SoC is what the MPAA wants to use to close the analog hole, by disabling outputs that don’t support HDCP.  Previously, such conduct was prohibited.

Under the FCC ruling, a movie that has never been released on DVD or Blu-ray can be restricted for 90 days, by using SoC to disable the analog outputs on your gear.  As some have pointed out, this isn’t all bad, because the content in question would be content that isn’t currently available, so those with analog gear won’t be missing anything that is currently available.

What is the practical effect of this?  It really has three ramifications, two of which are bad.  First, owners of older equipment without HDMI ports might be unable to get some of this new content.  Second, all owners will be unable to make backups of this new type of purchased content, as the analog hole will be closed (some articles solely discuss streaming or on demand content, but it is hard to imagine that the industry won’t try to sell you movies, too, leaving you at their mercy to save it on their system).  Third, if you have a newer television, you may get access to new content.

Is this a good thing?  Does the ability to get new releases, earlier, offset the control the movie industry will be able to exert over your gear?

 

Photo by RocketRaccoon

A Tech Morning Show – Coming Soon

TWiT morning show What’s your morning entertainment routine?  Do you listen to the radio, or watch television in the a.m?  If you’re disappointed by the offerings, have you ever wished for a a morning show that focused on tech and social media?  If so, you just might get your wish.

On various shows on the TWiT network, Leo Laporte recently has mentioned that he is in the planning stages of starting a morning show that you could watch on almost any internet-connected device.  We’ve previously written about the TWiT network, an internet network that streams live audio and video shows that cover all angles of technology, including the internet, Apple, Microsoft, Google, security, and more.  The network, a spiritual successor of sorts to TechTV, makes its shows available live, but also via audio and video podcasts (actually, the podcasts came first, followed by the live streaming). READ MORE

2 Ways to Get TV on Your iPhone – Slingplayer vs. OrbLive

snapshot-1266538933.455875Have you ever wondered what it would be like if you could use your iPhone to watch the same television stations that you watch on your television at home?  Wonder no more, for television on your iPhone is a reality, with the right setup.  Today we’re going to look at two methods for getting all of your television stations on your iPhone – Slingplayer and OrbLive.  The first method, Slingplayer, works anywhere that you have a data connection (3G or via WiFi), while OrbLive only works via WiFi but also works over 3G and WiFi and can be cheaper.  (Updated on 2/24/10 to reflect that an OrbLive update has appeared in the App Store, restoring 3G functionality). Both methods require a piece of hardware.  Read on for details. READ MORE

20 Things I Learned from Lifehacker (this week…)

Lifehacker.com | Geek to Live It never ceases to amaze me what you can learn online. From the interesting psychology reflected by the average user to the most basic of instructions for the tiniest task that may simply have eluded you, the worldwide web is that bit of tech that just keeps on giving. There are several places you can go on the web to get to the heart of it all (for you) and learn useful things (how-to’s, the best software — or cupcake — for your money, how to get things done that need doing and do it on the cheap, etc.), not the least of which are Google and YouTube, but for me, one place stands out as the go-to spot for most things I might need: Lifehacker. The name says it all, really — and yes, I am perfectly aware that I am promoting another blog on this one, but credit goes to where it’s due, my friends — and just look at the cool odds and ends I learned (and often shared) in just the past week:

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Redux: An Awesome Way to Waste Time

Image representing Redux as depicted in CrunchBase 

Recently, I was lucky enough to get an invitation to the beta of real-time video-sharing service, Redux. So far, the experience has been awesome! Redux has provided me with an easy way to discover and share video from all over the web. By connecting me with multiple users and groups sharing all manner of interesting things (from funny, to serious, to music, to downright strange), I can watch video from YouTube, MetaCafe, Funny or Die, College Humor, Hulu (if I were in the US…), Viddler, blip.tv and more (see image for full list). Other services are supported as well, but you get linked out to another window with a handy Redux title overlay that you can use to continue to share and comment from.

Redux supported services

All of this is updated in my personal stream, in real time, where I can comment on the fly while watching the videos I choose; as well as thumb up content, share on Twitter and Facebook, and follow  users and groups that share videos that are more to my taste.

Perhaps my favourite feature, though, is TV Mode, which I will explain in a moment. First, I have something for you folks! Redux is still in closed beta, but the community is already thriving. I happen to have some 12 invitations left and I may be able to get more. I’ll let you know how you can get your hands on them after the jump.

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