Monday, May 21, 2007

The good, the bad, the ugly

The good:

Had the day off today from work, since my job is the only one I've ever heard of that gives employees their birthday off. Pretty cool.

Need to get back to some people who were nice enough to remember my birthday and email me.

Today I wanted to play around with MythTV today for the first time in a while. Bought an Elgato ATSC USB television receiver today. I specifically wanted to find a device that would work cleanly with Windows, Mac, and Linux. Had been digging around and couldn't find a single product that supported both Mac and Windows. All the vendors were selling two different product lines.

It turns out the Elgato eyetv for the Mac is just a Hauppauge HVR-950 but with Mac drivers. It's the EXACT same hardware. In fact, they didn't even change the USB device ID from Hauppauge's. They don't advertise it, of course. They do make sure you buy the Elgato card for $139 and not just buy the Hauppauge card for $99 and then load the Elgato drivers by having a licence key for the driver.

It works great on my Mac. The drivers loaded without a hitch, and I am now receiving crystal clear HDTV from the Empire State Building. Now more snow and ghosting from the analog signals!

The bad:

While it supposedly does work under Linux, I'm going to have to play around with the V4L releases in order to get the firmware to load. Unfortunate, but expected given the KnoppMyth distribution I am using.

The ugly:

The internet access I have been "borrowing" from my apartment just happens to be on the 192.168.2.x network, which is the same address range handed out by Apple Internet Connection Sharing. I didn't think this would be a problem, except Apple hard-coded into the configuration tool and provides no way to specify an alternate network definition (at least not as late as OS X 10.4.9). So I have to play around with natd to make it work (and I swear the freebsd tools like route and ipconfig are a PITA compared to Linux). I didn't expect to spend so much of the afternoon just trying to get my MythTV box to connect to the Internet.

The building I just moved into is having their annual shareholders' meeting tonight. Going there now; figured it would be a good opportunity to meet the people in the building.