Tech Serendipity

Sometimes things no one ever thought of simply seem to come together. Services and devices end up being used to do things the individual inventors and designers couldn’t have imagined.

For some time now, I’ve been thinking about attaching one of the new Mac Minis to one of my TV’s and utilizing it as a home theater PC as well as an over-the-air DVR to record high definition digital broadcasts from the local TV stations. A late Sunday afternoon trip to my local Best Buy and a Mac Mini was mine.

I sat the Mac Mini up with Eye TV and a USB HD tuner attached to my outdoor antenna. Depending on how I have the antenna rotated, I can receive upwards of 17 or more HD and digital broadcast channels. Of course, keep in mind that the Mini is on my home network, so I’ve got complete remote access in a number of different ways.

The Eye TV 3.4.1 software has easy iPhone/iPod/iPad/Apple TV file conversion, so I’m easily able to convert the files to the format of my choice.

A thought popped into my head. What if I converted the files to the iPhone format and put them into my Dropbox? I also have the Dropbox app for Android installed on my Sprint HTC Evo phone. Since I have an 8 gigabyte SD card installed with the possibility of going all the way up to a 32 gigabyte card if I wish, could I synch the exported iPhone files from my Dropbox on the computer to Dropbox on my phone?

To my surprise, I don’t even have to synch the exported iPhone videos to my phone – once they are synched to the Dropbox server, all I have to do is open the file from Dropbox on my phone and the file immediately starts streaming. If I’ve got a decent 3G Sprint cell signal, the video plays perfectly without a glitch.

So, I’m taking multiple different technologies, and using them in a way no single inventor or designer ever envisioned. I can record local TV programming from home, export it as an iPhone format file into my Dropbox folder, and stream the files to my phone. Pretty phenomenal stuff if you ask me.

For sure, there are other ways to accomplish the same end result, particularly if one has adequate bandwidth. For situations where bandwidth is limited and more variable, this solution works surprisingly well.

GNC-2010-07-16 #593 Yes a Orange Shirt?

Can you believe planning is already underway for CES 2011. Crazy as it may sound we have our first meeting on Saturday.. We are really ramping it up this year by adding a 4th component to the content. Lots of tech news tonight and hopefully the oil leak remains sealed until they can get a final fix in. What a mess there will be to clean up now. How are the Audio levels on this show better?

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The Geek’s Show Links:
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History is repeating itself.
Super Semiconductor Breakthrough!
Mind Controlled Artificial Arm.
Apple Products have Flaws.
What is Apple going to do today?
iPhone Update Issues.
LocalRoulette?
Spice up your Facebook Page.
Are we gonna run out?
New iPhone Bar Display.
Top 10 Home Theater Devices.
Clear Channel wants more Radio Stations due to Internet.
Location Services & Privacy.
Tour the F35.
AMD makes Some Money.
Google to show search source?
Nice to be Free ehh!
Is your company Social?
Droid X on the Street.
Ford Sync and Nuance.
Mercury Fly By.
Senate finalize NASA Budget.
Audible iPhone App.
Aussie Lasers to Track Space Junk.
No Safety in Anonymity.
Mess with Droid get Bricked.
Three Strikes on YouTube.
DNA Collection Dilemma.
17.6 Million to get 390,000?
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New Sony Camcorder with lenses.
Popbox ready to ship.
Elgato Turbo H.264 HD
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GNC-2009-03-20 #461 Fantastic Show Today

Your host is back and healthy and feeling good. If you watch the video sporting a Bono look ;) and ready to head to the East Coast next week should be a great trip with a series of Podcaster Meetups all across the country.

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Show Notes:
FourSquare
Gmail and Google Labs
Google Voice View
Mac Hacking Tools Gets Updated
News Graveyard
Verizon Math
Calacanis Has it Figured Out!
DIY Craigslist Auction
Don’t dial while Drunk
6 More iPhone Models?
HD Movie Rentals on iTunes
Nielsen Twitter 1382% growth
Scoble SXSW Tech Take Away
Hawaii Rank 45 California 48 for Business
RawVoice to get Green
Spy Camera Tissue Box
Elgato 1080p Turbo.264
Service Failure Meltdown at SXSW
101 PHP Newbie Tutorials
Blubrry OpenID
iPhone Buzz Machine Incredible
Australia Blacklist Shameful
ISS gets more Power
Twitter Premium Hoax
New Gmail Undo Feature
New Mobile Firefox Browser
AT&T No Contract iPhone
Quantum Computer Advances
IE8 is Available
SixApart Motion Debut
Cisco Buys Flip