Tech Break: ivi TV

ivi, an online TV service available for just a few dollars per month for Windows, Mac and Linux systems, could stand to revolutionize internet video, free of ties to the telephone, cable or satellite company…if it could step things up a notch or two…and survive the impending tsunami of lawsuits about to crash into it full force.

The service’s premise is simple: take content that is available for free over the air in various major markets, then pipe it onto the Internet for all to see. Add in a few independent stations via encoders on-location, mix in a premium channel or two and charge a few bucks per month for the package. Bake until done and use a heat gun to check for profit.

Tech Break: Why is iTunes so slow?

We could talk about Google Instant, but there really isn’t much to say about that product; you type a search query and Google pulls up results before you finish typing. Google Instant increases the number of search queries that hit Google servers by a factor of between five and seven, and will save people 350 million hours over the course of the year. The time savings assumes, of course, that people will not spend those hours testing out Google Instant, or programming instant editions of other web applications, such as Google Maps or iTunes.

Community Spotlight: Blue Canyon Grill serves up savory burgers

The Blue Canyon Grill was founded in 2004 by Ted and Jolynn Johnson as a downtown sports bar and grill specializing in great burgers and fresh, exciting appetizers. The Blue Canyon has been in it’s current location at 1301 Washington Ave since early 2010.
The current location is part of the old Foss Drug building, which has been renovated multiple times in the last few years. With lots of wood and stone, the atmosphere is warm and welcoming, with a large fireplace in the main dining room. The restaurant also has a full-size garage door that opens onto Washington, with a few tables placed on a patio in front. In all, the atmosphere is contemporary but homey, and very comfortable for a pleasant lunch.

MacGruber’s on-screen explosion doesn’t wow audiences

MacGruber, a movie based on the Saturday Night Live skit about a handy soldier who is constantly fighting against the clock to stop an imminent explosion was recently released to blu-ray and DVD on September 7. The skits often featured guest stars such as Betty White, Shia LeBoeuf, Charles Barkley, and the original McGyver, Richard Dean Anderson. While the movie is just a prolonged version of the Saturday Night Live short, it is great for hardcore followers of MacGruber. However, the movie may seem very simplistic and just not funny for people looking for a more serious comedy.

The xx

The xx: Hip, minimal, appealing

Every year in the U.K. a group of music industry insiders award the Mercury Prize, an accolade given to the best alternative album of the year. When The xx received the prize last week they joined the ranks of other notable British groups such as Portishead, Franz Ferdinand, and The Arctic Monkeys. To win an award is one thing, to produce a truly excellent album is another. The question is: “Is xx all that it’s cracked up to be?”

Ska Special E.S.B.

Beer Review: Ska Special E.S.B.

While there are varied opinions on what exactly constitutes an ESB (extra special bitter), most brewers agree that the style refers to a simple English-style pale ale, especially one with a single type of malt and a single (usually English) variety of hops. Usually easy-drinking and well-balanced (if a bit on the bitter side), ESBs pair well with strong-flavored foods such as pizza, bratwurst, or buffalo wings.

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