Michael Earls

Michael Earls cerkit Just another programmer

Niner since 2004

I'm just some guy with a keyboard and an MSDN subscription.


  • Brett Bentsen - A look at the Portable Media Center

    Manip wrote:
    That menu system looks clunky and difficult to use... not intuitive in the least. I'm not massively impressed with the device. I mean feature wise (video, music etc) it is very nice but not very easy or pleasing to use.

    You could also extend the battery by removing the useless background and shutting down the screen outside the menu. You could and should also shut-down the screen when your playing music.. But if creative want to keep people happy with flash effects rather than a functional device then I guess this is what you end up with.

    I assume a lot of the problems with this device are down to the producer (creative) and that the 'portable media centre' is capable of being changed and having other menu setups.   

    I know I would want to be able to re-write my portable media player (And yes I would look for that before I buy, and it is a selling point) so I would be looking at Linux devices but Microsoft could win me over if I could write C# apps to customize it. Smiley

    I also prefer to transfer stuff using traditional folders (or directories) and being forced to use WMP to transfer things would piss me off no end.

    Brett: Nice DS9 in the background =)

    Manip, it is unfortunate that you make so many assumptions.  I own the Creative Zen and I have never been happier.

    It's important to note that the PMC is not a stand-alone device.  The smarts are in Media Player.  I have no trouble at all creating favorites lists and moving them to the PMC.  The menus are the easiest they could be.  In fact, the Zen has four shortcut buttons on the top of the device that I can associate with any menu in the device - including the selection of a favorites list or a favorite movie.

    I also bought the (wired) remote control for the device as well as a "hip pack" (once called a "fanny pack") to keep the Zen in.  It's very comfortable and the remote control allows me to, well, control the device without having to take it from the bag while on the train or out in public.

    Please be more careful and fair when talking about a product.  If you don't own it, don't comment on it stating that it "sucks" because it can't do this or that.

    It's a v1 device, yes, but I give it 5 out of 5 stars because they got it right!

    This device is fantastic.  I'm looking forward to the day when the price comes down and more people are able to enjoy it.  Because it's so new, we early adopters get to pay for it.

    However, there's no way this class of device will fail.  It doesn't ned a recorder, just go buy a cheap camcorder if you want to record on the go.

    Media Player 10 is brilliant when moving media to the device.  I had to learn how to make effective playlists, but once I did, it was very easy to tell WMP10 which ones to synchronize with the PMC.

    Of course, you can use whatever program you want to tranfer files, but I'd wonder why when Media Player 10 works fine.

    I use a media syndication program to automatically download the Channel 9 videos to the device and I watch them on the train to work.  It was quite odd to see a video of the PMC showing a video of the PMC on my PMC.  I had to rewind it and watch it again because it was so odd.

    I ask that you guys give this thing a break.  It's expensive now, yes, but it'll come down.

    Just head over to REI and get yourself a "pacsafe" hip bag.  It has steel mesh around it and a steel cable that you can lock your contents up.  With the remote control, it's a great music player while on the go.

    Good job PMC team!

    This is the future of personal media.  I just ordered an XBox extender for my media room and I've hidden the MCE2005 box in the closet.  I LOVE that we're finally seeing some of the vision that Bill laid out in "The Road Ahead".  I've been waiting on it for quite some time...

    Good job!  Kudos to each of you!
  • Brett Bentsen - A look at the Portable Media Center

    moofish wrote:
    how many adverts are there in US TV, i bet lots. WinMCE should have the functionality to cut ads, or pcm's should - that would save space. what about built in software (pcm) that you press the forward button twice and it knows when the ad's are over!

    Advertisements are what pay for the show.  I don't think you'll see any major corporation advertise the removal of ads.

    The "30 second skip" feature is there so you can skip past the "boring parts".  Let's leave it at that and keep moving.  Wink