Come on. Take it all. Do what you want!

NRK Online Spotlight meeNorway

So, what’s these two pictures? The one to the left is NRK’s official service for Windows Media Center Online Spotlight. The one to the right is a very unofficial NRK media center plugin for Meedio.

As mentioned in my post about Webshots and Flickr, one of the reasons why Flickr succeed is because they have a powerful open API. I have linked the acronym API to Wikipedia for the people that want to know more. The quick version: API is short for Application Programming Interface. It gives programmers a possibility to build new services on top of the service that provides an API. Google provides an API. In other words: people can build new services on top of Google. An example is the classic google fight.

Even without an API it is fairly easy to build new services on regular web pages. A plugin for Firefox called Greasemonkey puts this into a system with special scripts for adjusting and editing web pages as you visit them. Currently there are more than 400 000 scripts out there. Doing anything from removing the side bars of to building advanced price comparing capabilities on Wired magazine has an excellent article on Greasemonkey, explaining the details.

As the internet users get more advanced and the tools and programming languages become easier to use things like these happen. The BBC has experienced a lot of unauthorized remixing of their content and have been running around closing down web sites that is built on top of their news services and programme tables. Not anymore:
Continue reading “Come on. Take it all. Do what you want!”

Come on. Take it all. Do what you want!

The media center software list

A while ago I did a roundup of the different softwares I have been using in my HTPC. The list in that post is not complete, so I it’s time to put together a quick list of links to software alternatives when you want to build your own HTPC.

And if you are interested in HTPCs and media centers in general here is a good collection of links from

Digg this story here.

Windows Media Center Edition
Windows Media Center Edition (Review)

TVedia (Review)

ShowShifter (RIP) (Unfortunately not existing anymore)

Beyond Media / Beyond TV (BeyondTV – Review)

Sage TV
SageTV (Review)


J River Media Center
J River Media Center


Cyberlink PowerCinema

CQC (screenshots here and here)


Sesam TV (Free)

Nero Home
Nero Home

Intervideo WinDVD Media Center

Nvidia Purevideo Decoder with nStantMedia

Sceneo TV-Central
Sceneo TV Central

Yahoo Go for TV
Yahoo! Go for TV (Formerly Meedio) (Free)
(MeedioTV – Review) (YahooGo – Preview)

Xlobby (Free)

GBPVR (Free)

Media Portal
MediaPortal (Free)

Got all media
Got All Media (Free)

GameEx (Free)

Tvoon (Free)

Theatre@Home (Free)




MythTV (Free)

Sage TV

Freevo (Free)

GeexBox (Free)

VDR (Free)

My Media System
My Media System (Free)

LinuxMCE (Free)


Apple Front Row


Elgato EyeTV

Sage TV
SageTV (Review)

Center Stage
CenterStage (Free)

iTheatre (Free)


A very good collection of links for Apple media software (Thanks, Ole)


Xbox Media Center
Xbox Media Center (Free)

Windows Apple Linux
Cross plattform

Sage TV
SageTV (Review)


Elisa Media Center
Elisa Media Center (Free)

And over here you’ll find a list in Wikipedia comparing features of some of the packages.

Please comment if I forgot something important!

…if you consider buying books or software related to this topic. And if you would like to support when buying them, here are some suggestions:
Creating a Digital Home Entertainment System with Windows Media Center Windows XP Media Center Edition 2004 PC for Dummies PC Magazine Guide Windows XP Media Center Edition 2005 Beyond TV 4 & Beyond Media Bundle Beyond TV 4

The media center software list

10 WinApps

As promised. The next post in my series of lists. Inspired by Om Malik’s 10macapps. My list of 10 very useful Windows Apps.

Fantastic tool for view, scale, convert and browse pictures. Includes a very fast and nice batch convert function.

The swiss army knife of video processing.

Fast and powerful replacement for notepad

IMHO the best remote desktop software out there.

Stream your media everywhere for free!

DVD Decrypter
Fast, simple and powerful DVD-ripping

The best and easy DVD recompression tool

Free AC3 Filter for that 5.1 sound from your DVDs

Extremely powerful and configurable media player

Total Commander
File explorer replacement. Ugly and very powerful. Handles archives and does batch copying in the background.

10 WinApps

Opera Software has released its Media Software SDK

According to the press release the SDK makes it easy to bring the full internet to Linux based consumer electronic devices.

Do we want the full internet on all kinds of devices, or is there a job to be done to adapt the story telling, types of content, systems of advertising and usability in general on these devices as well?

Opera can reformat Slashdot to fit on my TV, but do I want that? The Opera browser works extremely well in my symbian phone, but again and again I miss content that is actually made for that device.

Opera Software has released its Media Software SDK

Top 10 blogs and some excellent Mac software etc…

Om Malik likes the lists of “Ten Blogs I Would Take To A Desert Island” that Laurence Simon came up with. And yes, that’s a great idea. We all know that with the internet we have come to a point where the amount of information and access to it is no problem. The problem is finding the reliable and interesting stuff. Tags, social networks and systems like and Furl help out here. The “most popular” list is a collection of links that always contains something interesting. Finding good information is better done by people than by bots.

And why not help people out there finding good software as well. Om Malik starts out giving his list of small freeware and shareware gems for the Mac: 10MacApps

So here we go:
It is very difficult to pick the 10 blogs that I would choose and stick to forever. That’s a list that simply doesn’t exist. It will be an always changing list. So, I’ll simply give you 10 blogs that I find very valuable right now (in alphabetical order):

1. BoingBoing
A directory of wonderful things“. Their own slogan says it all.

Never underestimate chief geek Oyvind Solstad. It was him that introduced me to, Flickr and Podcasting (way before anyone knew what it was). Of course he’ll post it on his blog the next time he finds something interesting.

3. Engadget
You don’t need any other sources if you want to know what’s happening in the world of gadgets.

4. IFTF’s Future Now
Yepp, future now. Insightful, intelligent and interesting.

5. John Battelle’s Searchblog
If something happens within the world of searching you’ll get it here first. And, because the world of searching is very important for the internet in general, you get some very interesting thoughts and reflections on technology in general. What would you expect from one of the founders of Wired Magazine?

Interesting stuff from already legendary full time blogger Jason Kottke. Design, technology, movies, music you name it.

7. Seth’s Blog
Seth Godin. Marketing guru and agent of change. Seth has an exeptional quality when it comes to explaining complex stuff in a dead simple and understandable way.

8. Slashdot
News for nerds, stuff that matters. If you want to know what’s going on in the world of technology this one is a indispensable classic.

9. Thomas Hawk’s Digital Connection
Intelligent insights on the world of digital media and photography.

10. WIL WHEATON dot NET: Where is my mind?
I don’t know exactly why but I really like ex StarTrek celebrity Wil Wheaton’s blog. It’s one of the more personal ones in this list, and you really don’t know exactly what to get. But the stuff you get is well written and interesting!

And yes, I have huge amounts of good blogs in my feed reader. I don’t know if these 10 are the best ones, but right now they are very valuable.

My list of 10 fantastic freeware and shareware apps will follow soon!

Top 10 blogs and some excellent Mac software etc…

HighPad Media Control – PDA Remote for Windows Media Center

I continue my quest to find a PDA based remote solution that lets me control my music without having to pick up the stylus on the PDA. I have talked about other solutions here and now I have played around with a promising package from Germany.

Meet HighPad – another PDA-remote solution. Here is my first impression.

The approach is quite ambitious. The HighPad Media Control solution promises to do the following:

1. Give you remote control of your media libraries
2. Give you remote streaming of your media to your device
3. Give you a possibility to sync media to your PDA
4. Function as a plain remote control for MCE
5. Give you a possibility to program the PVR in MCE

The HighPad Media Control will be able to control a full Media Center Edition System or a plain Windows XP computer running Windows Media Player. The system consist of a server application running on your media box and a client application running on your PDA.
And if you are like me, you want the conclusion right away:
This is an impressive package that is very powerful already (it is in version 1.02). It packs huge amounts of features but not all of them works perfectly well. Because of the fact that the most important features works well, and the other ones have great potential this is an addition to your home media center that is very interesting. Still, you should spend some minutes on testing the Niveus Remote (for ease of use) and NetRemote (for flexibility). You can read more on those here.

The installer is one file. During installation you choose if you want to install the client, the server or both.

At this point I ran into a little trouble.
Continue reading “HighPad Media Control – PDA Remote for Windows Media Center”

HighPad Media Control – PDA Remote for Windows Media Center