Archive | June 1, 2010

Media Browser 2.2.4 released

My favorite Windows Media Center plug-in is now at version 2.2.4. Among other things like bug fixing, the new release allows clearing the cache from the configuration wizard, the previously experimental SQL Lite allows now to share the play-state, allows localization and sports an increase in performance due to cache optimization. Because of that, be prepared to wait a while (depending on your media library size) until Media Browser rebuilds the cache first time it is used. As usual, I highly recommend using a SSD drive with Windows media Center in general and media browser in particular. The difference vs. a regular drive is like night and day.

Highlights:

  • The Media type is now retrieved from locally stored metadata.
  • Better support for using MyMovies and Media Browser side-by-side. The user can now set the preferred order of local artwork.
  • Watched status indicators are working normally again. Read More…

Deal of the Day – Sanyo VPC-FH1A Full HD Video and 8 MP Digital Photos at $279

Big drop in price: Amazon has an amazing deal for the Sanyo VPC-FH1A High Definition Camcorder, also capable of taking 8MP still pictures for a very low price of $279 no taxes and free shipping in most of the country. The Transcend 16GB seems also a good deal at $36.05. mostly excellent reviews with many praises for low light capability. I bought it myself when it was $329, expect a review to follow shortly. A great feature of this camera is the ability to transfer videos directly to an external hard-drive via USB, really convenient when you don’t want to carry your notebook. Manual (PDF) here.

Technical Details

  • Capture Full 1080p HD video (60fps) and up to 8-megapixel still photos
  • 16x advanced zoom for video; 10x optical zoom for photos
  • Face Chaser technology (can detect up to 12 faces for photos and videos)
  • Built-in still photo flash; High-Speed Sequential Shooting (12fps)
  • Compatible with iFrame (Apple friendly) video format that can drastically speed up the editing time

WordPress as a CMS – a case study Part 1

Recently, I created a website called The Fantastic Mom for my wife. She wanted the parents to have a place where to add/read reviews for various children related business reviews, food recipes for kids, interesting deals, also parents or kids related, in a word, everything. She also wanted a simple interface and to give everybody the capability to add their own posts. Since I already had some experience with WordPress (Review Horizon uses it) I decided to go ahead and see if I can do what she needed only by using WordPress and available plug-ins. In the next several articles, I’ll detail step by step how I built The Fantastic Mom, in the hope somebody will find the information useful.

1. Introduction

The Fantastic Mom is basically a combination between a blog and a CMS (Content Management System). The CMS part consists from a number of children related business info covering everything from party planners, martial arts, private and public schools and day care, entertainment parks and arcades. We filled the information manually since everything had to be accurate and we used various Chamber of Commerce organizations to gather the data for SoCal. Let’s take it step by step… Read More…