The Witcher — Interactive Map of the Continent →

January 13, 2020 · 14:53

Netflix released a wonderful interactive map and timeline of events from The Witcher. You can choose a specific point in history at the bottom of the screen (scrolling works on mobile devices too) and a small pop-up will give a short summary of what transpired in that specific point in time. If you click the pop-up itself, you’ll get a sidebar with even more information. There’s a lot of reading in there, so have fun!

House of Cards Season 5 Thoughts [No Spoilers]

June 4, 2017 · 21:51

We just finished watching the fifth season of House of Cards and quite frankly I’m astounded at how stupid Claire is. I apologise for being blunt, but she’s blind and petty over the last two seasons or so. Treasonous and greedy too. The show is great — I give it a big thumbs up — make no mistake, but I don’t understand how she’s so far off Frank’s game.

May 5, 2017 · 22:03

We’re binge watching Mad Men and things have been a bit slow recently, as my wife noted today (we’re on season 3), so naturally one of Sterling Cooper’s employees had a meeting with a lawnmower.

Love this show.

Netflix Starts Blocking VPNs, Proxies, and Other Unblocking Services →

January 22, 2016 · 14:16

Sebastian Anthony:

Last week, on January 14, Netflix said that it would begin cracking down on customers who use VPNs, proxies, or other “unblocking” services to view content that shouldn’t be available in their country. The move is almost certainly to appease copyright holders and broadcasters. Way back in 2014, Sony Pictures accused Netflix of “semi-sanctioning” piracy by allowing “illegal subscribers” to view geoblocked content.

The first report of Netflix blocking a VPN comes from uFlix, an Australian VPN service that charges AUD$2 (£1) per month for the ability to view Netflix content from around the globe…

Still working fine for me. There are a lot of proxy, VPN and SmartDNS providers out there — hopefully some will remain to let us watch content we’re paying for, wherever we are in the world.

‘Consumers… Well… We’re Fucking Stupid’ →

December 21, 2015 · 23:21

Don Melton:

Anyway, Netflix is talking about the bitrates for their 1080p videos soon being as low 2000 Kbps for the simple stuff. That’s down from the 4300-5800 Kbps range they’re using now. And I’m sure they can do that on the low end without any perceivable loss of quality while streaming.

But can Apple and Amazon sell 1080p videos — averaging about 5000 Kbps now — at bitrates as low as 2000 Kbps — less than half that average size — without a perceived loss of value?

I don’t know. It’s hard to predict because consumers… well… we’re fucking stupid.

A very insightful and technical post about video and audio encoders, bitrates, and the future for Netflix, Apple and others.

An example would be TIDAL and their HQ uncompressed format, or whatever they’re calling it. I’m sure it’s great if you have the right equipment, young enough ears, and the ability to tell the difference. I still can, but just barely, and quite frankly the added overhead in terms of size (amongst other hurdles) is just too much of a hassle for me. The current iTunes/Spotify/pick-your-vice formats are more than enough, and if they flipped the switch overnight without telling anyone, I doubt many would notice. I know I wouldn’t.