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Comment These bastards killed the CableCard (Score 4, Interesting) 75

Back in the 2000's I was closely involved in the CableCard business. Although the thing was (more or less) working the Cable companies did all that was possible to shut it down (overly complicated procedure to get cable card, low quality implementation ...). Since then I am now closely involved with European equivalent to CableCard, the DVB-CI+. Many operators are actively supporting this specification and surprisingly the TV subscription cost in Europe are two to three times lower than in Europe. Instead on pushing TV content to companies who are already making way too much money for their (our ?) own good. Why not revive the CableCard with today technologies. The latest DVB-CI+ specifications is based on USB, wouldn't that be sexy to just have to plug a USB stick in your TV to enable pay channels ?

Comment Insider look (Score 1) 167

I have been deeply involved with Cable Card (happen to design Cable Card test system and leading a Cable Card project). I am now leading some DVB-CI+ project for making USB based Conditional Access Module (CAM is the generic name for CableCard like devices). The major issue in the US are operators which loooove so much milking their customer that they will NEVER EVER allow a system that will prevent them to do so. So if there is an initiative to make software based CAM make sure this thing will be carefully driven to end up in the wall. This has been done before with DCAS and will be done again. This is why the average cable bill is around 100$ in US while we pay half of that for premium package in Europe. European commission may be a bunch a picky buggers, they don't hesitate to slam the fingers of the ones who are abusing their dominant position.

Comment The precioooous ! (Score 5, Insightful) 142

I have been hanging around with TV executives for 10 years, always trying to make them understand that all the protection they were trying (lamely) to put in place will only block legitimate customers while increasing product cost. But those guys behave like Gollum in Lord of the Ring: their content is sooooo precioooousss. They are beyond any reasonable argument.

Comment Re:Quantity over quality (Score 3, Interesting) 441

I am running a small high tech company in Digital TV and we are mostly experienced people in there (20 yr experience). We recently hired a young programmer but I know this guy will probably cost us money for at least the next two year, this is an investment we make into training him so he don't get spoiled with javascript and powerpoints. For now, he is nearly useless, he is full of "thing", but cannot manage to turn this into a product or even a useful feature. Other experienced guys can run mostly unmonitored without the fear that they will get lost in the wild, produce something useless or bug stuffed code spaghetti bowl (hail the great flying paste monster). Of course if your running a business where you invoice (a lot) companies for creating data entry forms with a cryptic software which was supposed to enable to create them themselves in the first place, you will need a lot of don't-think-don't-ask-question coding monkey ...

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