Archive | August 10, 2013

Changes In ‘TEN Cricket’ Broadcasts.

Anura Guruge, June 8, 2013.tenlogo

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Anura Guruge


Related Posts:
>> I watched ‘TEN’ last night … — Aug. 10, 2013.
>> Update ‘Ten Cricket ‘ …  July 30, 2013.
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It had been 10 weeks since I last saw TEN Cricket.

It really was good to get TEN Cricket on my TV last night.

I only got to watch 50 minutes — a 60 minute (I think) highlight package of the June 30, 2013 WI v. Ind match from the Tri-Nations Series. It was a good match.

I immediately noticed that TEN has made some interesting changes to their broadcast — none of it good!

Display of run-rate and strike-rate statistics have been pared down to the bone.

When a batsman is out and is walking back and they show his innings you no longer get his strike-rate for that innings! You get score, number of balls, minutes and how dismissed. No strike-rate. That is crazy.

You also don’t get frequent updates of run-rate — current or required. Just occasionally.

This might have been just for that match — and it was a 60-minute highlight package. But basically there was a dearth of key statistics — the stuff we had come to expect: run-rates, strike-rates.

I will monitor this. Not sure what we can do. So this is just a heads up.

I Watched ‘TEN Cricket’ In The U.S., On My TV, Last Night Using Skybox TV. It Was GREAT!

Anura Guruge, June 8, 2013.tenlogo

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Anura Guruge


zeetvbannerRelated Posts:
>> Update ‘Ten Cricket ‘ …
July 30, 2013.

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The Skybox TV next to the DirecTV Genie. It is pretty small. The tall box directly below that is the DirecTV Wi-Fi ‘modem’ and next to that is my 2nd DVD/VCR player. On the shelf above is a Philips DVD player/Sound Bar. The 47″ Philips TV is above all of this.


It was GREAT! It made my day.

To be able to see all my West Indian and Indian ‘buddies’ in action again, FULL-SCREEN on my 47″ TV, in near HD quality, with none of the jerkiness associated with streaming video.

This was a delight. I was so happy.

The picture quality is sure better than what I was getting with DISH.

So it is indeed possible to get ‘TEN Cricket‘ on your TV independent of ESPN 3. That is real good news for us in the U.S.

I was using the Skybox TV device kindly provided to me by ZEE TV USA.

It is a little box that connects to your TV using HDMI and gets its content over the Internet using Wi-Fi. It is extremely easy to setup. Just two cables: power and HDMI. Then just type in your Wi-Fi network password. Bingo. Bob is your uncle. I am currently getting about 25 International channels — one of them TEN Cricket.

I can’t rhapsodize enough about the quality. I am always skeptical about video quality with streaming. The quality with SkyBox TV is beyond acceptable. As good, if not better, that what I got with DISH. No ghosting. No delay. No jitter. Just like broadcast TV.

I got to watch the 60 minute highlight package of the 2nd West Indies Tri-Nation Series played on June 30, 2013 between the West Indies and India. It was a good, tense match with some great hitting and some good wickets.

Johnson Charles played an innings of a lifetime. At the start he made Chris Gayle look pedestrian. His first 20 runs were all in boundaries. In the end he hit four sixes and eight fours. Though he perished, unnecessarily at 97, it was an innings of a lifetime. Reminded me of Collis Kings, unforgettable 86 (off 149) at the 1979 World Cup Final with Viv. I was THERE. I still remember the electricity of that innings and most of all Viv applauding Collis when he was finally out. Viv made a century but it was Collis’ that won the match. Johnson Charles’ innings was as worthy as that — and yes the West Indies won by 1 wicket with 2.2 overs to spare. Chris Gayle disappointed again. Of course I love Chris when he is firing on all cylinders, but as I have said before I have major doubts about his technique. And yet again in this match it was his technical ineptitude that let him down. That is why Dhoni has an average over 50 and Gayle has an average below 40. Ditto for Pollard and Samuels and possibly even Sammy. But it was a real fun match. So glad I got to watch it. 

I will write more about this Skybox TV as I spend more time with it.

Right now, I am so happy to be able to watch TEN Cricket on my TV in the U.S.

Thank YOU ZEE TV USA.

How Come NOT A Single Teacher From Alton Central School (ACS) Or Prospect Attended School Board ‘Common Core’ Workshop?

Anura Guruge, June 8, 2013.

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Anura Guruge


Related posts:
>> ACS Board Aug. 8 Workshop … — Aug. 9, 2013.
>> ACS Workshop … should be hilarious — July 31, 2013.
>> ACS board not 100% behind Common Core? — June 11, 2013.

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So how come not a SINGLE TEACHER from Alton Central School (ACS) or Alton’s Prospect Mountain High School attended the much vaunted School Board workshop to discuss Common Core?

It is not like teachers don’t attend School Board meetings. They were there in droves earlier in the year when the $18M Bond was being discussed — all seated regimentally together. They attend when awards are being given out.

But, come this crucial, ‘KEY TO THE KIDS’ meeting on Common Core they are conspicuous by their absence.

It could not have been a coincidence or accident.

They were either telling us something or had been told by the Administration to stay away.

Their absence can be interpreted in multiple ways.

As I already said I was disappointed and amazed that the Administration did NOT stand up and defend their decision to pursue Common Core — at least in 2013 – 2014.

We had ancient folks from out-of-town standing up and talking about their teaching experiences from the 1970s — as if that had any bearing on CC.

There were all these non-educators that stood up and claimed that various teachers and unions were against CC.

Wouldn’t it have been wonderful to have some of OUR teachers there to give us THEIR impressions.

Because in the end, it is what they think that really matters?

I could be wrong but I have a sneaking feeling that the Administration told them to stay clear to avoid any flack!

That the Administration, to their dismay or otherwise, knows that they do not have a majority support by the Board is probably influencing their decisions.

Don’t we have an anointed, much-hailed ‘Champion of the Children’? How come he wasn’t there? Whether you support CC or not, somebody OTHER THAN the estimable School Board member, Steve Miller, the GUARDING of Alton’s school kids, needs to be there to represent the kids.

The Administration clearly demonstrated that they are not going to stand up.

I am doing my part. Don’t forget that it was I that got the ball rolling on CC — since I knew that we had an issue even more divisive than the $18M Bond. So I am doing my part — though I really am not passionate one way or another about CC. I am a great believer that you can take a child to a playground but you can’t get her to go on the monkey-bars.

Cisco Linksys RE1000 Wireless-N Range Extender: Truly A ‘Piece of Cake’, Plug-and-Play Device; 4 Minute Setup.

Anura Guruge, June 8, 2013.

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Anura Guruge


Re1000pluggedinRelated posts:
>>
Ventilated shelf for Linksys EA3500
>>Sep. 18, 2012.

>> It really was the D-Link router …
>> Sep. 9, 2012.

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<< I took a sledgehammer, April 18, 2014,
to this piece of junk! >>


We have had a high-end Cisco Linksys EA3500 Wi-Fi router since September last year. It is a dual-band wireless-N router and it does give us Wi-Fi right through the house.

While everything is relative (and I think of it as a small house) this is a 4-story, full-size New England colonial with all four floors in use. The top floor, the 4th floor, is a large open room that we use as our office. The Linksys EA3500 is mounted on the side wall in this 4th floor room. Since we have two 15Mbps fiber links coming into the house, one comes in on one wall the other on the other side.

Cisco Linksys RE1000.

Cisco Linksys RE1000.

Our ASUS and Toshiba laptops as well as the two Google Nexus 7 pads don’t have a problem picking up a decent Wi-Fi signal anywhere in the house. Even the DirecTV Wi-Fi box works fine — though it is as far from the EA3500 as you can get. Our family room, with the ‘big’ computer is on the bottom floor — three (3) flights of stairs down.

But, I decided we need a stronger Wi-Fi signal on the lower 2 floors.

So, I looked around. I kind of knew that there were range extenders.

I am savvy enough to know that it makes sense to stick with the same vendor, if possible, though, of course, Wi-Fi, based on rigorous standards, is vendor agnostics. But, given that we now have a Linksys (after a decade of swearing by D-Link) I looked at the Linksys offerings. As is my wont when looking for ‘accessories’ such as this, I started with Amazon.

I quickly spotted the Linksys RE1000 Wireless-N Range Extender. I also saw that there were Cisco-refurbished units for $39 — with a 90-day warranty (though I don’t worry about such things with Amazon since they are so good about returns).

Wi-Fi extender has no moving parts. I knew that ‘refurbished’ meant that customers had just returned it — possibly because they couldn’t get it to work.

I have had great luck with refurbished electronics and this was the simplest of these devices. So I ordered a refurbished for $39 and got the FREE shipping.

I placed the order last Friday night and it arrived in the mail on Thursday.

I went to install it this evening. It was a piece of cake. About 4 minutes start to finish. All I had to supply, as I expected, was the Wi-Fi password for our network. Bingo. Done. Bob, was my uncle.

That really was plug-and-play. OK, there was one hitch. You have to use a supplied CD to get it up and running. The setup application on the CD does not run on Windows 8. That was annoying. So I had to swap laptops. That was the only hitch.

It has noticeably increased Wi-Fi bandwidth in the lower flows. The laptops are getting 65Mbps — and I think that that they are gated by their chip sets.

So for $40 this was a worthwhile investment. I am particularly delighted by how easy it was to set up.

RE1000-Network_Diagram

Extend this two-fold to get a rough idea of our setup. But the same basic idea — our router right at the top and three floors below it.

Now in the interest of full disclosure I have to admit that Cisco was a long-term client of mine and that over nearly a decade I had a kind of on-again, off-again near incestous relationship with Cisco — my loyalties sometimes torn by my ‘lifelong’ association with IBM. Yes, I actually do have a Cisco employee badge — because I was theoretically employed by them for a few months. Yes, Cisco bought a token-ring startup I was involved with — after I made a phone call. Yes, I got stock options. But this was in the 90s. Yes, I used to own a fair number of Cisco shares. No longer. So in reality I don’t really have a conflict of interest — other than a chequered, and interesting, history. 

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