Take a bunch of geeks and tech activists and put them in a room with a tonne of computers and HDTV parts – all to build their own Linux-based MythTV HDTV digital recorder boxes and thumb their noses and proposed American laws that from July will try to regulate High Definition TV technology. Supposedly to stop piracy, but really it will have the effect of stifling technological innovation and removing personal choice when it comes to this technology.
As you can tell, I’m all for open standards in this area. In fact, I plan to put together my own MythTV box when finances allow me (the software is free, but you need reasonably good hardware to run it – still cheaper than most commercial PVR’s though – and infinitely more adaptable).
Some other good links:
http://www.mythtv.org – the main site for the system.
Also http://www.eff.org/broadcastflag/cookbook – a good step-by-step guide to building a user-friendly version of the system with the Knoppix Linux build. Provided by EFF, who are profiled in the main article.
As for the local scene, HD standards have been pretty well screwed up by the government and regulatory bodies here, so uptake has been slow. But it should improve over time – and with Howard’s insistence on following the US on nearly everything, it’s likely that we will get a similar “broadcast flag” system proposed soon enough.