Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Top 5 Most Overrated Tech of Today

Admittedly I’m trying to stir it up a little. Our last post was in October so I’m looking for a fight.

5. The Wii. Seriously? The only good game for the Wii is Wii Sports which comes with the system. All of the other games I have tried to get into require way to much motivation when the only time to be playing vids is during relaxation time. Admittedly, I’ve heard anectdotal evidence of major weight loss from Wii Fit, but as far as an entertainment system, it is incredibly overhyped. I prefer my active immersive experiences to be real, like outside on a real bike.

4. Ipods. I have yet to here good quality MP3 or lossless formats that can be put on external speakers and not sound like junk. I realize that if you have it blaring in your ear via headphones you can’t tell, but I have conducted experiments with the best encoded MP3 quality over speakers at my house, with the most amateur listners. Better yet, the new iPod Nano I bought takes video… Sort of. I finally spent $60 on a cord that can connect it to my tv at the highest quality possible and the people looked alien and blurry. Ipods serve a purpose but my guess is that American spending has overhyped this product.

3. LCD- Seriously? What is the rub? What happened to plasma? The blacks and refresh rate are like 5 times better with plasma and no one seems to care that plasmas are going by the wayside for inferior, more expensive LCD screens. I demand answers!

2. 3D- Dear Cable and Dish Companies… Are you seriously considering making us where goggles to watch football? I can think of a million other things that would make watching sports better… Like higher bit rates, currently over dish you are running 4-5 megabits per second and claiming it is “HD”. DVD is 8 mbs, Blu-ray is up to 50 mbs. You haven’t even mastered HD yet, and now your spending all of this money on a technology that will force us to buy a new TV? You can’t even deliver the goods to my TV now! C’mon Man!

1. Streaming Movies via Netflix. In theory this would be awesome. I could get Netflix Blu-rays and then while I’m waiting I can download movies in my queue to my PS3. So I signed up. Hook, line, and sinker. Number 1- the “hd” is like YouTube quality on a 58″ TV. Number 2- I’m pretty sure the only moves they have available for Streaming are available on TNT and AMC- skip it and set your DVRs folks. Weak selection. Somehow, I thought that I would have access to the entire Netflix catalog. Fail.

Keep in mind, I think some of this stuff has value… but I believe it is over valued by the consumer. Stay tuned for the Top 5 Most Underhyped Consumer Tech of Today.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

CBHD Beating Blu-ray in China

China Blue High-definition Disk (”CBHD”), a format eerily similar to the defeated HD DVD format, is outselling Blu-ray 3 to 1 in China. Apparently the advantage comes in price. The HD DVD equipment is slightly adapted to accomodate a different codec and new security features. Current DVD manufacturers can update their existing lines to make CBHDs for approximately $800,000 USD. Compared to $3 million USD for a new Blu-ray line, this translates into a much lower barrier to manufacturing this product.
The retail price per disc in China is selling between $7 and $10 USD and Warner brothers has adopted the format. Does the Chinese format stand a chance to come over to the US?

Wednesday, July 08, 2009

What does the Future Hold for Optical Media?

Some will go ahead and say “Optical Disc is Dead.” Some will point to the music industry and the shrinking number of brick and mortar music retailers as proof of this doomsday assertion. iTunes has made revolutionary advances in its product offerings as the “AppStore” is celebrating its one year anniversary this July.

Proof in the alternative can easily be found in the video game industry. Here we have the most technically savvy consumer and yet the most effective distribution of content is via optical media. However, a totally optimistic view of optical disc product expansion is likely misguided.

There are certain situations where digital delivery makes perfect sense. Sub-1 gig applications like music, casual games, and ring tones are perfect examples of this. In the consumer market, as we recover from this economic crisis, our insatiable hunger for rich entertainment applications will intensify. Boundaries will be pushed instead of retracted as has happened in the past 5 years. The need for larger tangible storage and delivery solutions will continue to outpace the necessary bandwidth needed for digital delivery of these rich applications.

Corporate promo videos and applications likely aren’t perfect for digital delivery. Email marketing is becoming less and less effective, so how do you steer people to your download space with high rates of success? Packaged media provides savvy marketers two avenues for promotional real estate- the media and the packaging. Proof can be found in the “As Seen on TV” market. How many free DVD offers do you see now?

There will be effective uses for both methods over the next 10 years. Great Lakes Media Technology will be positioning itself to help with both methods. Currently we offer solutions for your developed or undeveloped content to be delivered on disc or web. No matter how you need it done, we’ll help deliver it.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

GLMT Discs: Made in the USA

I'll just come right out and say it: this recession sucks. There's really no way around it. How did we get to this point? Well, one could go on forever with a million different explanations (I'll spare you my personal opinion). Instead, I prefer to focus on something more positive - the things I have control over. This includes how I spend the few precious extra dollars I have. One thing I have been more conscious of is buying local products; using the power of the free market to help those closest to me. I've been taking the extra moment at the store to look for the sticker that tells me where a product was made. If I see “Made in the USA,” I find myself just a little more likely to put that thing in my cart.

With that, I am proud to say that GLMT replicates discs right here in the United States. No outsourcing to China here; the machines are right here in Mequon, Wisconsin, with American workers cranking out the product. Discs go straight from the replication machine, to the printing press, to the packaging line, without ever leaving the building! We don't slap a big “made in the USA” sticker on the back (we'd rather make sure your drive can read the data), but we want you to know that when you buy from us, you're keeping jobs right at home.

Wednesday, June 03, 2009

1GB Doesn't Necessarily Mean 1GB

Actual capacity does in fact differ from the stated capacity of a USB drive. When you are supplying data to be uploaded to a USB drive, it's best to leave at least 10% of blank space to ensure that none of your data gets cut off.

For example, on a 1GB flash drive, we recommend supplying no more than 900MB of data to be uploaded. Due to rounding by manufacturers and a whole lot of fun computer terminology - we need to be aware that not all sticks carry their stated capacity.

Technology presumes there's just one right way to do things and there never is. ~Robert M. Pirsig

Wednesday, May 27, 2009


Promotional Items at their Best

I admit it. When I notice free stuff being handed out I at least have to see what it’s all about. I love to grab the little note pads and Post-Its with other companies’ logos on them. All my pens have either my dentist’s or pharmacist’s name carefully imprinted on the plastic.

My favorites, though, are the ones I can use over and over again like my company T-shirts or my mugs. All these promotional items are given away for free but have value to me. I wear my T-shirts everywhere and advertise my company. I use pens and pencils, mugs, note pads, whatever else, and people notice.

My favorites, as you may have noticed, can be used in everyday life. I love a free-something that fits in with my life. The very best one now, I think, is the USB stick some companies are starting to hand out.

This is the best of both worlds. The outside can be imprinted with a company logo, and it can also contain a message or a program the consumer can view and interact with on a computer. Best of all though, for me, is the extra space left over on the flash drive where I can store my photos or music, whatever I want to move around.

Custom printed USB Thumb Drives are now available at GLMT. They come in all sorts of colors and options, and I promise you, we will love them forever!