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Please open up the Apple TV: An Open Letter to Steve Jobs

by editor @ AppleTVHacks.net on August 11, 2007

appletv Please open up the Apple TV:  An Open Letter to Steve Jobs

Dear Mr. Jobs,

Thank you for releasing the long-waited Apple TV back in March of this year. We think it’s a wonderful device and a great addition to the home theater setup.

With the Apple TV’s easy-to-use interface and simplified remote, we can now watch our favorite movies and TV shows we’ve downloaded from the iTunes Store on our 52″ plasma screen. We can listen to our music collection via our souped-up home theater instead of having it come out from our PC speakers. We can share our vacation photos with our friends in the living room instead of having them crammed in front of the computer. And lastly, we can also enjoy those funny YouTube videos from our couch without going back to the computer.

As wonderful as it is, Apple TV is a closed system. Without hacking it, there is no way to add new features to this one-of-a-kind device. Just a simple feature like supporting new file format requires a hack that probably makes casual users cringe at the thought of trying it out.

Yes, there is a large community of “hackers” that helps with adding features to your closed-up Apple TV. It is not that we are hackers by the classic definition. We don’t try to get into people’s bank accounts, hack into the DOD computer systems, nor do we like to be known as “hackers”. We do it because we see the vast potential of this device. With no support from Apple, we do not have other ways; we are forced to be known as “hackers.”

Your current favorite iProduct, the iPhone, has a development kit and the number of applications for it is growing daily. Though limited, the development kit for the iPhone allows for applications to use its native services making easy to expand on the phone’s functionality.

There also exists a Widget development kit, which allows Dashboard Widgets to be created with ease. That kit alone enables the widget application base to grow to 3100+ widgets strong.

The developers who develop on these kits are still known as “developers.” We, on the other hand, are known as “hackers.” All this just because of our love for the Apple TV.

As for the Apple TV community, we get NOTHING. No development kit to add new functionality like the iPhone. No accessories like the ever-popular iPod, unless you call those Apple TV “skins” accessories.

Frankly, we are frustrated.

Here is our plea to you, Mr. Jobs. Please open up the Apple TV.

Just imagine what it can do. By having a development kit, we can easily add new features to the Apple TV without risking to void the warranty. Want to support a new file format? Boom, a plugin for that. A new arcade game? Boom, a game plugin for that. Want to surf the web? Boom, a Safari-like plugin for that too. Oh how wonderful it is to be surfing the web on a 52″ plasma TV.

And if there is hardware development kit, think of the hundreds of manufacturers who would be eager to develop new accessories for it. A DVD drive? Boom. An AV box? Boom. A hard drive for extra storage? Boom. You already have a “made for iPod” certification program. Why not have one for the Apple TV too?

Yes, there will be a lot of “BOOMS” in the Apple TV Land only if there is a development kit for it.

You mentioned that Apple TV is a “hobby” to you. So why not let it be our hobby to legitimately develop for it too.

Eagerly waiting for your reply.

Sincerely,

The AppleTVHacks.net team

Apple TV Resources

by editor @ AppleTVHacks.net on August 9, 2007

appletv resources hacks Apple TV Resources

Last100 has compiled an extensive collection of Apple TV resources. The article covers reviews, hacks, blogs, wikis, podcasts and other resources about Steve Jobs’ favorite “hobby” product.

Both our sites, AppleTVSource.com and AppleTVHacks.net are, of course, mentioned in the article. We couldn’t be more proud. With the iPhone getting all the attention nowadays, it is good to be recognized for our contributions.

If you don’t mind, go add some diggs to their article.

Meet my new Blogging Machine

by editor @ AppleTVHacks.net on August 8, 2007

new imac Meet my new Blogging Machine

Just got back from the Apple Store at South Coast Plaza to get my new iMac.  It’s a thing of beauty, my friends.  It’s thinner and sturdier.  I took some photos of it and posted on my other site, gadgetaholic.

The only thing I don’t like about it is the keyboard.  The feel is actually worst than the original IBM jr. chicklet keyboard (if you are even old enough to know what it is).

iTunes 7.3.2 Available

by editor @ AppleTVHacks.net on August 3, 2007

itunes 732 iTunes 7.3.2 Available

Apple is on a roll.  iTunes 7.3.1 just came out a month ago, now there is 7.3.2.  Man, you guys are hard at work, Apple.

It seems like there is no new functionality.  Just bug fixes to improve stability and performance.

Go get yours today!

Managing comments

by editor @ AppleTVHacks.net on August 2, 2007

managing comments Managing comments

As many of you know, we get tons of comments on our articles daily. Though we are flattered that people like commenting and linking to our articles, it makes loading pages much longer than it has to, not to mention trying to scroll through all those comments.

So, we resolved this by installing Keyvan Minoukadeh’s WordPress Paged Comments Plugin available at keyvan.net. Now, only 10 comments are displayed at a time. You can even go to a specific page of comments. We like!

No, Keyvan didn’t pay us for this. We just really like his plugin. If you use WordPress and want to put those comments under control, you can’t go wrong with this.

So far so good?

by editor @ AppleTVHacks.net on July 30, 2007

We got a lot of people writing in about how the patch is NOT going to work for them.  We have already addressed that in the previous blog entry.

Now, we’d  like to hear from those who got the patch to work.  How do you like it?  Anybody got a 2TB drive plugged in yet?  Maybe you can send in a screen shot of the settings screen showing your USB drive size?

Come on.  Show some love.

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