Tag

Sony

Battery Pack In The Freezer: Not A “Cool” Idea

By funny, sarcasm, technology

Oh the perils of technology. Ever think something’s a great idea at the time, and then later on you’re kicking yourself? Yeah, story of my life. I think I killed my digital camera battery. This is a strange story, indeed, but worth a read.

I have a Sony Cyber-shot N1 digital camera. I’ve always had, and probably always will have, Sony digital cameras. They make superb products. Anyway, my last camera had the same proprietary dock port as my current one, meaning the same USB cable should naturally work with both cameras, right? Yeah, you’d think so at least. I misplaced my memory card reader the other day, and so I pulled out the USB cable I still have from my old camera.

As soon as I plugged it in, it killed the battery completely. So, I plugged it into the battery charger, and literally after two minutes the battery was fully charged and operational (which tells me the battery wasn’t drained in all actuality). So anyway, smart one here used the cable again today, thinking it was just an isolated incident, and sure enough it killed the battery again. The only problem this time was that the battery wouldn’t recharge. Why? The battery was already fully charged this time. The charger wouldn’t charge it any further (it’s an aftermarket charger I bought after I lost my factory one), and I therefore couldn’t get the battery working again.

The whole thing about the USB cable killing the battery instantly is strange, I know. But strange or not strange, I needed to take some pictures today for my Downtown Short Pump website. I decided to take matters into my own hands.

I have always heard that lithium ion batteries drain faster in cold environments. This is why many cell phones and iPods, as well as other devices with¬†rechargeable¬†batteries, work for shorter periods of time in the Winter months when used outside. So genius here got what he thought was a bright idea. If the battery won’t charge because it’s already full, why not drain it? And if lithium ion batteries drain quickly in cold conditions, why not stick the battery in the freezer for a bit?

I stuck the thing in the freezer for about an hour. I took it out afterwards and it was cold and covered with condensation. I think it’s shot. Who knows, though, it could have already been done for after using that cable a few times. Why a simple USB cable with no power running through it could affect a battery, or anything else for that matter, is a mystery to me.

Guess I’ll be ordering a generic battery to go with my generic battery charger. Pretty soon I suppose my camera will be generic, as well. It’s about the only Sony brand component left. As much as I like technology, I sure screw a lot of my own electronics up.

HD DVD: Pull The Plug Already!

By Uncategorized

Toshiba’s HD DVD format is pretty much completely dead. It’s been a long, drawn out, horrendous death, with Blu-ray stabbing it in the back repeatedly. It’s about time someone pulled the plug on the life support so that we can move on and prices will drop on Blu-ray discs and players as they begin to replace DVDs over the next few years (Don’t worry, your DVD library will not be obsolete, as Blu-ray players are backwards compatible). Another great thing about a single format is that you’ll now begin seeing Blu-ray players come standard in computers and other devices over the next year or two.

Four of the six major movie studios have yanked any and all support for HD DVD away in favor of Blu-ray, and now Netflix has made a solid blow at the format, choosing to do the same. Seems similar to the VHS vs. Beta tape struggle of the 1980s, only this time Sony is on the winning side (they developed the long-lost Beta tape and are now behind the Blu-ray technology).

Netflix chooses Blu-ray over HD DVD

Each week, we seem to see more signs that HD DVD is brain dead. Someone just has to turn off the life support. The latest sign: Los Gatos-based Netflix, the DVD rental service, said [Monday] it is phasing out HD DVD deliveries and will only support Blu-ray DVDs by the end of the year. The company will not be purchasing any more HD DVDs and will only be buying next generation discs in the Blu-ray format.

Netflix said the decision was based on the fact that four of the six major studios have publicly declared exclusive support for Blu-ray. The biggest one, of course, was Warner Bros. which made its announcement last month on the eve of the CES show in Las Vegas. “We’re now at the point where the industry can pursue the migration to a single format, bring clarity to the consumer and accelerate the adoption of high-def,” said Ted Sarandos, chief content officer for Netflix.
It’s not such a big surprise that Netflix went to Blu-ray. Competitor Blockbuster made a similar decision last year.

The question is when does Toshiba, the company behind HD DVD, finally throw in the towel? The company responded to the Warner Bros. announcement by cutting the price of the HD DVD player. But the writing seems on the wall. HD DVD can still live on as a kind of premium DVD player, with its ability to upscale current DVDs. But as far as a true next generation DVD player, it doesn’t appear like people are gonna be looking in HD DVD’s direction.