Visit any major metropolitan city, and chances are you'll eventually stumble upon vendors selling pirate CDs from outdoor tables, often for as little as $5 each. But for the suburban resident in the US, flea markets are where the pirate action is.
Wireless local audio/video networks and surround sound systems have long been one of the electronics industry's holy grails, given the fact that a major cost in installing home theaters or whole-house audio systems is the wiring. The market potential is so great that major chipmakers have invested enormous amounts of research in developing products that would enable easy placement of audio and video systems anywhere in a home without the need for dedicated wiring.
Warner Music Group is supporting efforts by the DVD Forum to create a hybrid dual-layer CD/DVD-audio disc, according to reports from New York the first week of December. WMG, a unit of AOL Time Warner, is one of the music industry's principal backers of the DVD-Audio format.
The Consumer Electronic Association's (CEA) Gary Shapiro is known for maintaining an ever-optimistic stance on the progress of home entertainment, and a recent keynote at the Semiconductor Market Outlook Conference earlier this month provided an opportunity for him to reveal his top predictions for the future.
COLDPLAY: A Rush of Blood to the Head Capitol 5 40504 2 (CD). 2002. Coldplay, Ken Nelson, prods.; Mark Phythian, Ken Phythian, engs.; Rik Simpson, Jon Withnal, Ben Thackeray, Jon Bailey, Andrea Wright, asst. engs. AAD? TT: 54:14 Performance ****½ Sonics ****
Computers and vacuum tubes go together like Trent Lott and flyaway hair, right? The last time filaments glowed in computers was during the 1960s, when a computer was a building. I remember laughing at the ponytailed computer-science dweebs back then, who spent their college days playing nursemaid to a football field's worth of electronics capable of little more than adding two plus two. Chained to a computer half the day, as most of us now are, guess who had the last laugh?
"Suicide junctions," I calls 'em. The ones with which I'm most familiar are on I-278, just north of the Verrazano Narrows Bridge in Brooklyn, New York, and along North Mopac in Austin, Texas, but they must exist all over the US. Traffic about to enter the freeway must first cross the line of faster-traveling offcoming cars, the intersection's on- and off-ramps crossing in a shallow X.
John Atkinson and Stephen Mejias tally the writer and editor votes to present "The 2002 Products of the Year." As JA comments, "For more than a decade now, Stereophile has recognized components that have proved capable of giving musical pleasure beyond the formal review period."
As tighter restrictions on the use of both audio and video digital content loom in the legislature, the Home Recording Rights Coalition (HRRC) and the Consumer Electronics Association (CEA) have teamed up to counter the ever-increasing demands from copyright holders. The HRRC, founded in 1981, is a leading advocacy group for consumers' rights to use home electronics products for private, non-commercial purposes.