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HD DVD Demo a Disappointment

ScuttleMonkey posted more than 8 years ago | from the things-to-never-live-down dept.

Technology 532

triso writes to tell us that the recent unveiling of the new Toshiba HD DVD production model met with a few difficulties. From the article: "It was supposed to be the grand unveiling of a new generation in home entertainment when Kevin Collins of Microsoft Corp. popped an HD DVD disc into a Toshiba production model and hit 'play.' Nothing happened. The failed product demo at this week's International Consumer Electronics Show was hardly an auspicious start for the HD DVD camp in what's promising to be a nasty format war similar to the Betamax/VHS video tape battle."

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FP! (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14423941)

Boat

Totally OT, but more interesting than this story (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14424032)

Re:Totally OT, but more interesting than this stor (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14424049)

Karma is such a bitch, ask Texas

Re:Totally OT, but more interesting than this stor (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14424190)

So is your mom.

Hey! (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14423942)

Hey! This'll fit in with the XBOX 360 'features' of not turning on really well!

Well (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14423944)

So what? A failed demo is nothing to laugh at. I mean they probably has a slight bug, that shouldn't be a sign that the format is totally screwed. Give them a break!

Re:Well (4, Insightful)

insertwackynamehere (891357) | more than 8 years ago | (#14423961)

yeah and when I set up the video in English class and the stupid public school VCRs dont work, I'm the one who has to explain it and people don't like hearing about faulty equipment. It's just "w/e I guess you couldn't set up the tape" not in a mean way, but its a "you couldn't set up the tape" even when it's not really your fault.

Shows what you know........ (5, Funny)

ConsumerOfMany (942944) | more than 8 years ago | (#14423963)

Tthis is not a failed demo. Even the Toshiba executives cant get around their new DRM technology.

Re:Well (5, Funny)

amazon10x (737466) | more than 8 years ago | (#14423976)

Sure... I mean, look at the glitch MS had when demoing Windows 95; we all know that was in no way representative of the final product.

Windows Trade Marks (2, Interesting)

ncurtain (937487) | more than 8 years ago | (#14424035)

I think it must be a publicity stunt to have all their demos crap out on them.
1. It's good for publicity
2. When you pay your small fortune for your crap version and it goes down on you, you can't say you weren't warned.

It couldn't possibly be be sabotage, not all the time.

Could it?

Re:Well (4, Informative)

VGPowerlord (621254) | more than 8 years ago | (#14424040)

I think you mean Windows 98 [cnn.com] .

Re:Well (1)

amazon10x (737466) | more than 8 years ago | (#14424104)

Indeed. Now that I have checked it is definetely Windows 98 and not 95.

Re:Well (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14424163)

That was a classic! Bill ask the Scanner to be plugged in to demonstrate the new Plug and Play and BOOM! Blue Screen of Death is born!

Re:Well (5, Funny)

mstefanus (705346) | more than 8 years ago | (#14424082)

It was Win 98 actually. & parent should be modded Funny, not Insightful.

I don't envy that guy... (1)

Lead Butthead (321013) | more than 8 years ago | (#14424085)

I don't envy the guy that's responsible for preparing and setting up the demonstration. Rest assured that heads are going roll for this fiasco.

I beg to differ... :P (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14423979)

lookie here: http://www.kbcafe.com/videos.aspx/bsod [kbcafe.com]

Laugh, its funny. (2)

nurb432 (527695) | more than 8 years ago | (#14424119)

Sure its something to laugh at. Laughing at a screw up isnt some evil attack on them personally..

If you cant see the humor in a failed demo, or 'take a joke', then you are in the wrong business.

Re:Well (1)

kimvette (919543) | more than 8 years ago | (#14424249)

But, see, when you are setting up a demo of a preproduction-but-not-prototype of a model which is actually going to be on the shelves in two months, and are putting on a demo to show the virtues over a competing product/format, you had better be damned sure that your demo system is going to run the demo video perfectly.

I'd say that the HD-DVD failure is something the Blu-Ray crowd is definitely going to laugh at because all they need to do is demo a working Blu-Ray system with a Blu-Ray movie and they can spready "HD-DVD isn't ready for prime time, buy Blu-Ray now!" FUD. That Blu-Ray is slightly less consumer-hostile is merely a side benefit (hard to believe Sony is the good guy and Toshiba the villain now).

Quick, somebody call Bill G (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14423953)

Hes good at solving these kind of problems.

new for microsoft? (0, Troll)

jollyroger1210 (933226) | more than 8 years ago | (#14423960)

Because something not working is new for Microsoft?

Re:new for microsoft? (1)

tehwebguy (860335) | more than 8 years ago | (#14424241)

that is the funniest sig i've ever seen in my life

Damn, I guess they didn't satisfy the DRM req!? (4, Funny)

thecampbeln (457432) | more than 8 years ago | (#14423962)

Or did Kevin Collins of Microsoft Corp. not have a first born child to offer up to the IP gods?

Re:Damn, I guess they didn't satisfy the DRM req!? (1)

bersl2 (689221) | more than 8 years ago | (#14423997)

Seriously. While the submitter might say
The failed product demo at this week's International Consumer Electronics Show was hardly an auspicious start for the HD DVD camp in what's promising to be a nasty format war similar to the Betamax/VHS video tape battle,
the aforementioned similarities end there, for no consumer has any prospect of winning, as long as DRM remains manditory and not advisory.

Re:Damn, I guess they didn't satisfy the DRM req!? (1)

Thing 1 (178996) | more than 8 years ago | (#14424166)

Perhaps they were really demoing DRM? And therefore, the demo was a success!

1/2 ;-)

but... (0, Redundant)

freakybob (715183) | more than 8 years ago | (#14423964)

but DVD is dead [slashdot.org] ! We need a new format to watch movies on, and fast!

Why the worst link to this story? (0, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14423966)

The Detroit News ran an AP story YESTERDAY with a pic.

http://www.detnews.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/ 20060107/BIZ04/601070376/1013 [detnews.com]

Re:Why the worst link to this story? (1)

Cal Paterson (881180) | more than 8 years ago | (#14424014)

You could've mentioned that the pic was irrelevant to this discussion.

Re:Why the worst link to this story? (2, Insightful)

neonstz (79215) | more than 8 years ago | (#14424016)

That "demo" is obviously rigged. The colors are not the same. I'm not sure if there are any differences in the video format other than resolution, but I'm pretty sure regular DVD can display yellow.

Re:Why the worst link to this story? (1)

LiquidCoooled (634315) | more than 8 years ago | (#14424121)

I agree.
That image looks downright awful - it has to be doctored.

Re:Why the worst link to this story? (1)

raoul666 (870362) | more than 8 years ago | (#14424200)

Not only that, but we're supposed to be able to discern the difference in a 36kb photo, taken with who-know-what kind of camera, viewed on my crappy old monitor. Yeah, I'm gonna trust that and buy a new HDDVD player and a bunch of movies.

Two points here... (4, Insightful)

jmcmunn (307798) | more than 8 years ago | (#14423968)


First point, HD-DVD had a bad demo and Cnet has one of the Blue Ray players on their "Best Of" list. Sounds like things are going to be interesting.

Second point, another famous demo failure I will point out is the infamous "Windows 98 Blue Screen of Death" that Microsoft had back in the day trying to show it off. And after that, only a few hundred million people used the OS. What a failure.

Re:Two points here... (1)

99luftballon (838486) | more than 8 years ago | (#14423971)

Indeed, it isn't a proper demo unless something screws up at some point.

Re:Two points here... (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14424019)

"...And after that, only a few hundred million people used the OS. What a failure."

In all fairness, millions of PCs were sold with Windows 98 preinstalled. Companies and users with the need/obligation to run Windows applications but without the time/skill/resources to replace it with another OS bought those PCs and didn't have much of a choice in what OS to use at that point.

Re:Two points here... (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14424075)

In all fairness, suck it down nigger.

Re:Two points here... (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14424105)

[QUOTE]And after that, only a few hundred million people used the OS. What a failure.[/QUOTE]

A marketing blunder will not affect a company with a monopoly, but we're talking about two emerging technologies competing for dominance.

This thread is useless without pictures. (2, Funny)

ISayWeOnlyToBePolite (721679) | more than 8 years ago | (#14423970)

Moving Pictures...?

Yeah, that's never happened before.... (0, Redundant)

d474 (695126) | more than 8 years ago | (#14423973)

...I just can't think of this ever happening and another opening event... [cnn.com]

Re:Yeah, that's never happened before.... (1)

Nahooda (906991) | more than 8 years ago | (#14424129)

I guess the guy (not Bill, the other one ;-P ) was fired the next day. I feel kind of sorry for him since it wasn't his fault.

-Dennis B. Schramm

Re:Yeah, that's never happened before.... (0, Offtopic)

sn0wflake (592745) | more than 8 years ago | (#14424147)

I'm sure this could never happen to Linux. If something bad happened I imagine the guy presenting thinking something like "Oh... Okay, no problem. Let me just enter five obscure 100 char long commandlines and it'll work." and it probably does. The problem though is that no ordinary, or even slightly advanced, computers users know these commandlines and how they interact. That is the basic problem why Linux isn't installed everywhere. Sure, it's a great OS but hardly anybody knows how to make it work when the slightest problem occurs.

You have it backward (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14424259)

What happens if Windows does something unpredictable? You reboot. If that doesn't work, you reinstall.

So how is that different from your experience with Linux?

Actually, if I get something working in Linux, I expect it to work again reliably. If it worked before I went in front of an audience, it will work when the audience is there. You can't say that about Windows, at least not if you're Bill Gates.

If you do bother to become a 'power user', then you have a lot more tools than you do if you're a Windows user.

again and again. (1)

twitter (104583) | more than 8 years ago | (#14424192)

..I just can't think of this ever happening and another opening event.

I can't think of it not happening to them.

Thanks for the link. I love the fake applause and laughter they put onto that track. It's Quality to match their software.

HD-DVD (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14423975)

As far as I know Windows Media Player 11 allows full legal backups of HD-DVD. This insures HD-DVD as the winner. Also, from observing Gates' speech at CES 2006 I noticed that the HD-DVD disks can also be used legally for backup to Portable Media Center devices.

There is nothing Blu-Ray can do to win, they are dead as is everything Sony.

Here's to HD-DVD, time to buy that 1080p television set with HDMI inputs.

Re:HD-DVD (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14424042)

As far as I know Windows Media Player 11 allows full legal backups of HD-DVD.

False.

lol... Any other M$ slipups come to mind? (1)

jigjigga (903943) | more than 8 years ago | (#14423978)

oh where to start...The classic at comdex in 90' when Windows 98 bsod'd... Last year at CES Windows MCE crashed when Bill demonstrated the photo software... Any others come to mind?

well... to ms's credit it wasn't their product (1)

jigjigga (903943) | more than 8 years ago | (#14423995)

oops, didn't include the tidbit that it wasn't their product for those who didn't rtfa.

Re:well... to ms's credit it wasn't their product (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14424258)

But it was a MS disc! I have setup demos at 5 trade shows and for 2 days before the shows we go through every different scenario. In fact, software is locked down 24 hours before show. We always have the off chance that system can be compromised overnight so we test before the doors open (if we weren't out drinking the night before)

The fact that the disc was inserted and nothing happen kinda shows minimal testing was done.

Also Bill Gates was talk about how great HD-DVD's DRM would be for Computer users and how shitty Blu-Ray was. While Bill did get hit in the face with this one he did get splattered.

Re:lol... Any other M$ slipups come to mind? (1)

Tim Browse (9263) | more than 8 years ago | (#14424076)

oh where to start...The classic at comdex in 90' when Windows 98 bsod'd.

Well, to be fair to MS, Windows 98 wasn't due to be released for another 8 years at that point, so they still had some testing left to do.

Weird, i don't get t (5, Insightful)

killa62 (828317) | more than 8 years ago | (#14423981)

If you're showing off a new product in CES, don't you make absolute positively sure that the product actually works?
I mean this was a production model, so either all their prodution models are broken, or they got REALLY unlucky and got a bad one..
If it were me though and I was going to showcase a new product, I would make sure that it acutally worked..
Quality Control is your friend..

Re:Weird, i don't get t (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14424088)

"If you're showing off a new product in CES, don't you make absolute positively sure that the product actually works?

No, you run around like a chicken with it's head cut off the week before trying to get a demo that just runs with spit and bubble gum and no time for testing because your manager never got around to scheduling time to prepare a demo and just expected it to magically happen on top of all your regular work trying to meet the release date.

Re:Weird, i don't get t (1)

Rob Simpson (533360) | more than 8 years ago | (#14424114)

I figure this must be either the result of incompetence (they didn't test it first... should've brought a backup, too, in case the player was damaged on transport to CES) or the machines/discs are so flaky that they could fail at any time.

sabotage! (1)

Narcocide (102829) | more than 8 years ago | (#14424131)

(simple explanation)

Agree. He should have rehearsed a bit (1)

ishmalius (153450) | more than 8 years ago | (#14424136)

I have done many software demos for packages that I have made myself. I have learned that you never trust the product to do what you want it to do. Before you do a public demo, you should always make a printed script, and practise it 10, 20 times or more. Sure, it removes the spontaneity from the demo, but at least the thing will do what you expect it to do. And run through it at least once when you get to the demo location, just to make sure everything is plugged in, etc.

Once your scripted part is done, you can always go back and do things more naturally, and answer questions. But at least it works once properly. If it fails during this part, you can always blame the operator.

Re:Weird, i don't get t (4, Interesting)

AKAImBatman (238306) | more than 8 years ago | (#14424148)

Here's an interesting story for you. Back in the days when live TV was more common, Timex was going to run a live advertisement that showcased the durability of their watches. They strapped the watch to a boat's propellor, spun it around a bit, then showed how it "takes a lick'n, and keeps on tick'n!"

Timex ran the test a dozen or so times before they were supposed to go live. That watch did fine in every test. Then the golden moment came, and they were on the air. The watch took a lick'n as it was supposed to...

...and it stopped ticking.

All those tests they had done, and the watch had finally failed for the real deal. So you can't always predict these things. Now it's always funniest when it happens to Microsoft, but if you give Murphy an inch, he'll make sure to make a fool of you every time.

Re:Weird, i don't get t (2, Funny)

RobertLTux (260313) | more than 8 years ago | (#14424224)

but if you give Murphy an inch, he'll make sure to make a fool of you every time. ---- actually in this case it would be give Finangle 2.5 cm and he'll make sure to make a fool... (and yes a double joke is in this posting)

DRM (5, Insightful)

c0dedude (587568) | more than 8 years ago | (#14423987)

I will not buy either until safely assured the DRM is broken and I can rip as I want.

Re:DRM (-1, Troll)

cryfreedomlove (929828) | more than 8 years ago | (#14424142)

Will you be ripping copies that you purchased? What will you do with the ripped bytes? Will you distribute them to other people?

Re:DRM (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14424165)

What will you do with the ripped bytes? Will you distribute them to other people?

You should know that that would be illegal. Are you an agent-provocateur?

Re:DRM (1)

cryfreedomlove (929828) | more than 8 years ago | (#14424194)

No. I am merely baiting a rhetorical debate on the ethics of ripping and distributing that is outside of the license agreement that comes with the content.

Re:DRM (1)

Dg93 (10261) | more than 8 years ago | (#14424233)

I rip my dvd's onto a video jukebox that i've got at home hooked up to a projector. This way I can just pick the movie I want to watch and watch it - no dealing with the physical dvds themselves. Kind of like what I do with my music.

Re:DRM (5, Interesting)

Yahweh Doesn't Exist (906833) | more than 8 years ago | (#14424269)

>What will you do with the ripped bytes?

encode them and put them on my iPod with video.

and fuck you for implying people wanting to rip their own disks are planning to break for law. some of us happen to live in countries where businesses don't own the government so much that format shifting is illegal.

Blu-Ray (0)

AsmCoder8088 (745645) | more than 8 years ago | (#14423988)

It is a shame that this failed, considering all that HD-DVD has going for it. While Blu-Ray does have a better sounding name, it's also got DRM, and no one wants that.

Now, people are not going to be very impressed with HD-DVD. Considering all the effort that they put into the demo, they should have at least tried it before giving the presentation!

basiCreations Software [basicreations.com]

Re:Blu-Ray (3, Informative)

Cal Paterson (881180) | more than 8 years ago | (#14424026)

HD DVD has drm too. So did DVD. Read up.

Re:Blu-Ray (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14424031)

It is a shame that this failed, considering all that HD-DVD has going for it. While Blu-Ray does have a better sounding name, it's also got DRM, and no one wants that.

I suppose you haven't been paying close attention recently-- the HD-DVD format also contains DRM. Indeed, the release of the first generation of HD-DVD players was actually delayed [slashdot.org] because the "content-protection" technology they employ wasn't ready for delivery yet.

Interestingly enough, I believe they both use the same (AACS) DRM system, though I suspect it will be substantially more difficult to circumvent than CSS.

Re:Blu-Ray (1)

ThePhilips (752041) | more than 8 years ago | (#14424169)

As many have already speculated, HDTV quality is high enough to be ripped from analogue signal and converted back to digital.
Anyway, DivX/XViD image size is normally scaled down, compared to DVD resolution - iow we are already used to lower-than-DVD quality. And it is Okay ;-)

Re:Blu-Ray (0)

Keruo (771880) | more than 8 years ago | (#14424230)

> we are already used to lower-than-DVD quality. And it is Okay ;-)
No it's not
DivX/XviD looks like shit if you're watching it from larger screen or with projector.
The image just doesn't contain enough detail when comparing against HDTV or even DVD material.

I get the okay good enough point, when you're watching the XviD on ipod or monitor, or old tv, where the high resolution isn't possible.
Most material isn't that important to see in so high detail that you can count every bodyhair from the actor/actress, but some can really take advantage of the better detail.

demos and marketing (2, Insightful)

Dan9999 (679463) | more than 8 years ago | (#14423998)

Sure a lot of people will make fun of it, and there will be others that say that this doesn't mean anything for the technology but the truth is that if this makes it into the mainstreal media it will be a big hit to the HD DVD marketing force.

Surely they will try to find something in the BR camp to level things out.

Format wars and free markets (3, Insightful)

argoff (142580) | more than 8 years ago | (#14424003)

Just as an FYI. Format wars don't tend to get out of controll in a free market, it's only controlled market where people try to fence off "intellectual property" (which isn't a real free market property at all) that it becomes a problem.

Re:Format wars and free markets (0)

Bazzalisk (869812) | more than 8 years ago | (#14424024)

Really?

How do you know? Have you ever seen a genuinely free market? No? maybe that's because the free markey model is descriptive, not proscriptive.

In short a genuinely free-market is impossible, and what's more, would be quite a bad idea even if it was possible.

Re:Format wars and free markets (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14424264)

Yes, and when intellectual property is abolished, we will all gather around the campfire to sing and the lions will shake hands with the gazelles.

Or maybe people would be locked in to formats through encrypted DRM.

Or maybe a company wouldn't develop a revolutionary technology in the first place if they couldn't make money off of it? Also notice that the more open technology tends to be cheaper in the marketplace (because there are more manufacturers). The free market works after all.

Own their own content... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14424023)

"Studio executives argue that people want to own their content and that DVDs offer the same portability options as downloadable programs or video on demand services."

Um, own their own content... LOL! Which face are the executives speaking from this time?

Why a format war? (4, Interesting)

DrRobert (179090) | more than 8 years ago | (#14424043)

I'll do what I did with DVD, DVD-A, SACD, HDCD. I won't buy anything until one player can play all of them. This was an impossible situation with Beta/VHS. I expect it will happen quickly with the hardware this time. The formats will confuse the hell out of people who just want a DVD though, sort of like back when Apple had a 100 models of macs that were all pretty much the same.

Highest Capacity Wins (4, Insightful)

binaryspiral (784263) | more than 8 years ago | (#14424048)

In my mind, who ever can fit the most bits on a disc wins. I don't give a flying carp about video quality or format wars... I want to cram the most data on a disc and that's all.

Re:Highest Capacity Wins (3, Interesting)

cgenman (325138) | more than 8 years ago | (#14424094)

On a disk or per dollar?

Dual-layer DVD+-R disks hold twice as much as the single-layer version, yet cost more than twice as much and haven't really taken off.

On the other hand, if all you really cared about was high capacity, why not buy a Hard Drive? For just 100 dollars you too could hold 260,000 MB in your hands.

HD-DVD's are lower capacity, but cheaper. Blu-Ray has a somewhat higher capacity, but is more expensive.

Either way we're not talking about Blu-Ray-RW yet, so how does capacity help?

Nobody expects . . . (1)

frankthechicken (607647) | more than 8 years ago | (#14424158)

Agreed, much like the usual alcohol per penny bargains, the only thing that will fly for me is data per dollar.

Oh, and access time.

Err, and time to deterioration.

And possibly imperviousness to scratches.

I think that's it.

Re:Nobody expects . . . (2, Funny)

slashkitty (21637) | more than 8 years ago | (#14424182)

Size matters too.. Unless you believe some girlfriends.

Re:Highest Capacity Wins (1)

piano-in-a-box (851921) | more than 8 years ago | (#14424179)

Wouldn't more capacity mean less compression, resulting in higher video/audio quality anyway?

Re:Highest Capacity Wins (4, Interesting)

Hackeron (704093) | more than 8 years ago | (#14424270)

I've learned the hard way that switching to DVDs for backup was a *BIG* mistake. While I could clean my 700MB CDs with sandpaper and they worked fine after that, the slightest mishandling of DVD caused jittery picture/sound or file curruption. Even if HD-DVD and Blueray are not as fragile as DVDs (yeah, right), the thought of losing 28GB of data this time round is, well, why take the risk.

I cant imagine anyone will use this crap for data storage so the capacity is a moot point. I built a nice 4tb array on raid5 that cost me around $800 (20 cents per GB which is CHEAPER than blueray/hd-dvd), or yes, a couple of 400GB drives on raid1 and your data is quite safe and you dont need >10 disks for same capacity.

Furthermore, with consumer ADSL having 2mb these days (granted asymetrical), you can afford to back up to a popular p2p network, best backup method possible and thats how I backup my legally purchased music/movies and other non private media.

"Nasty format war" my foot (5, Insightful)

blake182 (619410) | more than 8 years ago | (#14424057)

This is not a Betamax/VHS battle from the consumer's point of view. I mean, maybe the content providers and equipment manufacturers may view it this way, but there's a fundamental difference from the standpoint of the consumer.

With Betamax/VHS, there were pretty significant mechanical differences between the formats -- having a single unit that could play both types of media was essentially impossible without having two completely separate (expensive and futzy) transports. In the case of DVD, HD-DVD and Blu-Ray, they are all 12cm spinning optical discs with exactly the same physical characteristics from the transport point of view. Yes, there is a difference from the logical data formatting and laser point of view, but there is no reason that I can see (other than licensing from the respective consortiums) that a single player couldn't play CD, VCD, DVD, HD-DVD and Blu-Ray.

So fine, as a consumer, I don't give a shit. Frankly, I'm going to be buying DVDs as long as they make them, and I'm perfectly happy with that. Unless the Blu-Ray or HD-DVD consortium prevents manufacturers from making a unit that can play both types, I'm going to buy a new player that handles all of the formats, and they can jerk off as long as they want figuring out who's a winner, and I can buy pretty much whatever comes out and be able to play it.

Re:"Nasty format war" my foot (1)

insertwackynamehere (891357) | more than 8 years ago | (#14424133)

thats a really good point, I hadnt thought about it that way. But now you've just helped me pinpoint what I hate about these format wars so much, thanks :)

Re:"Nasty format war" my foot (1)

darkmeridian (119044) | more than 8 years ago | (#14424240)

This is just like the "difference" between DVD-R and DVD+R. To the consumer, it means nothing because the new equipment works with both formats.

We're all future Nostradamuses! (2, Insightful)

NanoGator (522640) | more than 8 years ago | (#14424065)

Already there are comments alluding to the future stability of this product. Sure sure. I used to work at a company developing new tech. We had embarrasing demo screw-ups too. Most of the time, they were human error, though occasionally the software had an unforseen problem with it. Remember those old bumper stickers that read: "Shit Happens." ?

The demo failed, B.F.D..

Where's the movie? (2, Insightful)

fsterman (519061) | more than 8 years ago | (#14424097)

Where's the movie for this? Was there really no cameras rolling?

Not all the HD-DVD demos were bad (2, Informative)

Glonk (103787) | more than 8 years ago | (#14424098)

Not all of the HD-DVD demos were a bust.

BetaNews has some screencaptures of HD-DVD running on a Windows Vista PC (playing the Bourne Supremecy).

It's mostly a profile of "iHD", which as I understand it is a mix of EMCA Script and XML for the titles and interactivity of HD-DVDs.

Re:Not all the HD-DVD demos were bad (2, Informative)

Glonk (103787) | more than 8 years ago | (#14424110)

Not all of the HD-DVD demos were a bust.

BetaNews has some screencaptures of HD-DVD running on a Windows Vista PC (playing the Bourne Supremecy).

It's mostly a profile of "iHD", which as I understand it is a mix of EMCA Script and XML for the titles and interactivity of HD-DVDs.

(Oops: a link would help: http://ces.betanews.com/entry/HD_DVD_and_iHD_in_Ac tion/1136757415 [betanews.com] )

biggest failure (3, Insightful)

AkA lexC (939709) | more than 8 years ago | (#14424112)

seems to be the name HD-DVD: imagine when we get recordable ones.. HD-DVD-RW. The abbriviation needs an abbriviation. At least blu-ray sounds futuristic

Multi-player (0, Redundant)

DigiShaman (671371) | more than 8 years ago | (#14424160)

What's with all the bitching? I seriously doubt anyone want's to plunk down the cash for a 50/50 shot of device not being supported in the near future. So here's an idea. Why not have a DVD player that plays BOTH HD formats. You already have the bulk of the device made. I can't imagine it adding another $20 to the cost of the total unit (lens and tracker).

Bah, most people won't hear about this (1)

aoeusnth (101740) | more than 8 years ago | (#14424161)

The impact of this will depend on how widely it is reported in the media. Although the situation is better than it was even just two years ago, most people still don't give a flying frak about HD-whatchamacallsit. Geeks wanting the most capacity (Blu-Ray) + videophiles/Black-Friday-mavens-who-somehow-ended- up-with-an-HD-set wanting HD content now (HD-DVD) = still not enough to create a fuss over a failed launch demo.

Having said that, I'll personally throttle the guy who makes the Blu-Ray launch demo, if it fails. Blu-Ray has always sounded cooler; it's the one *I'd* want, and damned if I'm personally embarrassed by a technical glitch.

Just why the hell do we need to replace DVD, now? (1, Interesting)

Wakko Warner (324) | more than 8 years ago | (#14424178)

Can somebody please explain to me what's so awful about DVD that it should prompt millions upon millions of consumers to throw away billions of dollars' worth of discs and players in favor of some new format? Honestly, I just don't see the urgency. A few extra lines of resolution had better not be the answer.

Re:Just why the hell do we need to replace DVD, no (1)

ldspartan (14035) | more than 8 years ago | (#14424220)

ever watch a dvd on a 50+ inch HD monitor? looks like balls. Thus, HD-DVD.

Re:Just why the hell do we need to replace DVD, no (1)

Kuxman (876286) | more than 8 years ago | (#14424244)

So that hardware companies can have a new product. With the intense competition over hardware sales (battle between big guys and the no-name brands), prices have dropped really low for things like DVD burners, harddrives, etc. By introducing a new hardware spec, it'll give the "big guys" an edge over the no-name guys, so they can jack up prices on the new goods. All they have to do is convince Joe Schmoe user that the quality enhancements are worth the extra buck (or thousands if you include the HDTV, cables, etc.). IMHO (and in agreement with other posts so far on this topic) that these HD discs will not have that much of an impact. I'm waiting for holagraphic disks.

bulls--- (1)

The NPS (899303) | more than 8 years ago | (#14424211)

It was supposed to be the grand unveiling of a new generation in home entertainment

There's no way a new format could be a "new generation in home entertainment." It's just higher resolution and copy protection. I hate being lied to.

Format War (4, Funny)

bman08 (239376) | more than 8 years ago | (#14424217)

I find myself feeling like WWII era Ukraine. Squished between Hitler and Stalin. Destined to be punished by whoever wins. I, for one, can't wait to be liberated by either blu-ray or HD-DVD.

Of the 25 million hdtv sets... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14424235)

...stated in the article as wanting pre-recorded hd content, how many have digital video in (dvi/hdmi), and of those, how many are hdcp enabled?

iirc, both camps will require hdcp enabled sets to operate at full capacity, otherwise the signal gets downsampled. Their paranoia over the "analog hole" will kill these formats faster than a format war.

they say they're aiming for the 1st adopters. well the 1st adopters have hdtv sets without hdcp!

that and a good scaler will make your dvd collection look really good on an hdtv anyway.

just my 2 cents

Cost is king (1, Interesting)

retro128 (318602) | more than 8 years ago | (#14424238)

Analysts say the early adopters, those who rush out and buy whatever new technology becomes available, will jump right in and pay $1,800 US for a Blu-ray player from Pioneer or $499 US for the Toshiba HD DVD player.

Hmm, which one should I get?? This is typical Sony.

My understanding of the manufacturing of the discs themselves is that fabricating Blu-Ray discs requires complete retooling, while making HD-DVD discs only needs a retrofit of the equipment used to make standard DVDs [projectorcentral.com] . Then you add Sony itself to the equation...They have a long history of developing proprietary standards, which are arguably superior, but end up being so expensive for the consumer that they die (the standard, not the consumer :) ). I'm sure they want a pretty penny for Blu-Ray licensing as well. As it is I am sick of Sony and their fire-and-forget policy on practically all of their products - which is to roll out product and practically drop support immediately. Ever try to get new firmware for a Sony product? Ever try to do an out of warranty repair? It's usually cheaper and easier just to buy a new one. The cost for them to even _look_ at the problem is insane.

The fact that Toshiba's demo didn't work means nothing. Ultimately the marketplace will decide who wins, and the trump card in the marketplace is cost. If Blu-Ray sets don't come down to be competitive with HD-DVD, HD-DVD will win by default - just like VHS did.

The video games point (3, Interesting)

jaymz2k4 (790806) | more than 8 years ago | (#14424260)

At the end it quotes:

"The (video) games industry since the early 90s has had two or three incompatible formats and it hasn't slowed the adoption of game platforms,"

when i think about it, this seems like a great analogy to say 'hey, look 2 different types of disc isnt really that crazy or impractical' but i think they're missing a big point. can anybody imagine what it would be like to have a single console per generation? something within me is screaming 'that would suck, less innovation, less choice, less everything'. instinctivly i know that with video games having different consoles is definitly a good thing, i just cant seem to qualify it in writing appropiately, im sure some of you will agree.

with data storage/movies/whatever though i find it hard to accept having two potential 'standards'. we're not talking zip disks or anything here, were you know that your probably not going to be able to use it on 'every' computer you come across. yes, development of more than one type of _potential_ storage media is a good thing but for something that is so important from a cost/ease of use point of view there is, IMHO, room for -1- standard only in the end. unfortunatly some people are going to get burned when that eventual standard emerges.

Has Steve Jobs ever had a demo fail like that? (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14424268)

We all like to bag Bill Gates, his BSOD demo and events like this failed HD-DVD demo. Out of curiosity though, has Steve Jobs ever had something fail like this during one of his demos? There has been much made lately of how much effort Steve Jobs puts into the preperation of his demos, so would be interesting to hear of cases where it still didn't go right.

Anyway, looking forward to Steve Job's keynote this week at MacWorld. Hopefully he will introduce something from totally out left field and blow us all away.
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