Free on demand from Comcast

Catherine and I have had analog Comcast cable TV in the US since we moved into our apartment here. We’ve resisted going digital because of the brain dead requirement that you use the Comcast set top box (which sucks), and therefore it not working with MythTV. If they shipped a digital decoder card which worked in a PCI slot with Linux, I would upgrade right away.

I’ve told them that a bunch of times, and they’ve offered us free upgrades about four times.

In the end they must have got the hint, because they just gave us a free “on demand” digital box for our analog cable. It’s free for a year, and appears to be a Motorola DCT 700, which seems to just be a embedded computer which uses a two megabit connection to Comcast to deliver programs.

Now I’m meant to be activating the device, but I’ve been on hold with Comcast for 15 minutes. The user documentation even promises the call should only take three to four minutes. Of course plugging the MythTV box into the back of the Motorola box also broke our existing analog reception, so I might end up giving on the call and backing out the cabling change until Comcast gets with the program…

More device gossip as it comes to hand.

Destinator 3 GPS navigation for the PocketPC

I was reasonably happy with Destinator 3’s trial maps of Australia, but hadn’t had time to write up anything about it yet. I guess that’s unlikely to happen now, as the trial just expired after four days, instead of the four weeks I assured it would last.

Given that the maps for Australia seem over priced (twice the price of the US maps?!?), my imminent departure from Australia, and the general not-particularly-helpful-ness of the Australian distributor, I’m not sure what else to say.

The distributor, after what seemed like an ridiculously large number of emails agreed to reactivate the trial. That made me happy again until I found out tonight that they sold me an out of date version of the product. Grumpy.