brainwagon "There is much pleasure in useless knowledge." — Bertrand Russell

18May/051

My New Toy: Philips DVP 642

On a whim, I decided I needed a new DVD player. It's not like I don't have DVD players, but the one I had in my living room had one disadvantage: it was old enough that it wouldn't play any DVDs that I burned. It's simply old enough that it wasn't an issue. Eric Haines had mentioned that he had bought these uber-cheap Cyberhome DVD players for fun ($30 at Circuit City) but I decided that while I was at it, I should get something that could play DivX/MP4 disks (I'm addicted to the new Doctor Who episodes that I've been snarfing from isohunt and my usual method of hooking my laptop up was painful and frequently crashes).

A bit of research suggested that the Philips DVP 642 would be a good one. And so far I must admit, it seems great. $70 from Target. Plays everything I have. DVD. VCD. SVCD. NTSC. PAL. And with a simple code from the web, apparently all regions as well.

I plopped in a DVD with four episodes of Doctor Who in it. Worked perfectly. A CD-R with two episodes. Worked fine. My Episode IV CD. Looks beautful.

It could all go to pieces tomorrow, but so far, it seems great and is a good bargain.

18May/050

Context Free

Example PictureCourtesy of Mark Lentczer, have a gander at Context Free, an implementation of Chris Coyne's design grammars. This puts me in mind of Alvy Ray Smith'a graftals or L-systems which I first read about 20 years ago.

After a few minutes of playing, I came up with this:

Brainwagon Receding

A few minutes more hacking resulted in the following branching structure (click on it to waste my bandwidth and download the 2000x2000 image):

Braintree