Saturday, January 19, 2008

Enhance your Movie Experience

You can encode any video you've filmed yourself or downloaded off the Internet, but one of the things that really adds value to your portable PSP viewing is the ability to time-shift your favorite TV shows onto it for portable viewing.

If you have a newer model TiVo with TiVo-to-go or any ReplayTV with an Ethernet port, you can easily transfer video from your digital video recorder to your computer over a local network connection.

With a lot of time and a modicum of effort, you can copy the contents of your DVDs to your computer and recompress your favorite videos into MPEG4 for watching on your PSP.

Of course, for each DVD you want to convert to MPEG4, you can expect to spend a good 512 hours of intensive processing time on your computer (depending upon your processor's speed). If you have the patience and the time to spare, then go for it. If not, consider going out to your local media outlet and buying the movie on UMD to help support the growth of the PSP platform.

Most DVDs use DeCSS encryption as a form of Digital Rights Management (DRM) to prevent widespread piracy. The problem with this solution is that besides not really being an effective means of preventing piracy, the DRM also gets in the way of law-abiding consumers like you and me, who only wish to exercise our fair use rights with a product we've purchased and own. This is a particularly nasty catch-22, and I recommend that you get involved with trying to undo this bad law. See the web site for the Electronic Frontier Foundation ( for more information about DRM, and current and proposed laws that essentially (or potentially) infringe on your rights. Examples of potential threats include the "broadcast flag," which involves use of encoded signals in the content that trigger anti-copying features inside your very own home devices. Although an FCC rule requiring manufacturers to implement broadcast flag technology was overturned in court, its supporters are committed to resurrecting it.
See Wikipedia for more information:

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