[opendtv] Re: Delay in accepting change

  • From: Craig Birkmaier <craig@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • To: "opendtv@xxxxxxxxxxxxx" <opendtv@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Thu, 18 Sep 2014 08:50:54 -0400

On Sep 17, 2014, at 8:09 PM, "Manfredi, Albert E" 
<albert.e.manfredi@xxxxxxxxxx> wrote:
> And yet back in the 1990s, you were arguing, quite forcefully, that it wasn't 
> going to happen. Too expensive, no consumer interest, not necessary, the 
> standards are no good, it's only content that matters.

And I was absolutely correct. The broadcast TV standard was a flop. It took the 
broadcasters more than a decade to move to HDTV, and their audience continued 
to decline. 

I also argued quite forcefully that Moore's Law would overtake the DTV 
transition. That HDTV would quickly become a commodity because it wax just a 
few turns of the Moore's Law crank beyond SDTV. 

If you go back and look a bit more closely at what I wrote in those days, I 
objected to the DTV standard because it was designed for CRT displays and to 
keep interlace as a barrier to competitions with the IT industries - " the 
barbarians at the door."

Compressed component SDTV via DVD drove people to buy higher quality displays. 
When Moore's Law made flat panel displays affordable the market took off. It 
did not take long to realize that interlace was a buggy whip, and the 
electronic imaging industry said enough.

So in reality, I never said it would not happen. I accurately informed everyone 
why it would not happen the way the ATSC and broadcasters were hoping for.

> But it was pretty obvious, even back in 1991, that both of what you mention 
> here were true. It was obvious that TV of the day was amazingly primitive, 
> and it was obvious that Moore's law would soon make any required innovations 
> for HDTV affordable.

And I argued for this. I worked very hard to try to create appropriate 
compression and emission standards. I accurately described the future landscape 
long before it happened.
> I'm saying simply this: Consider the same type of transition happening now, 
> wrt TV content distribution. Arguing against this will only give me the 
> opportunity to quote you, a few years down the road, after all the changes 
> are in place. Why lob the slow pitch?

Because we are talking about politics,  the control of the "information 
economy," and entrenched oligopolies, not technology.

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