ATVFlash – playing fair?

by editor @ on May 28, 2008

By now, you probably have seen quite a bit of coverage of ATVFlash, a patchstick sold by Apple Core LLC to help ease the installation of plugins like Couch Surfer, Media Cloud, nitoTV and many others.  The patchstick is sold for $59.95.

I am all for entrepreneurship.  People are entitled to charge whatever they want for their work.  However, I learned that the developers whose software were included on the patchstick did not grant Apple Core LLC permission to include their software on the patchstick; let alone, charge for it.  I don’t think it was ever the developers’ intention to charge money for their work.

Also, I do not agree with including Apple’s copyrighted files on the patchstick to be sold. It is true that, in creating a patchstick for personal use, these copyrighted files have to be copied to the patchstick in order for it to be useful; one does not break any law by copying these files from one place to another for personal use.  However, redistributing these files to others, whether it is for profit or not, is a definite violation of the copyright law.

What’s your take?

New bootloader to boot Linux

by editor @ on April 28, 2008


Scott Davilla of the atv-bootloader project has informed me that a new bootloader for Apple TV to boot Linux is now available. With this version, kernel patches to the EFI are no longer required. Also, atv-bootloader can now boot Linux from any mass storage device (including external USB device).

For more information on this, go to atv-bootloader site here.

Actually, Scott wrote to me a couple of weeks back. I just didn’t have a chance to update the site until now. Sorry, Scott.

Internet Radio without hacking

by editor @ on April 28, 2008


Some of you may already knew this, but Apple TV unofficially supports Internet Radio. I found this out when 2.0 was released a few months back.

To get this feature working, all you had to do was create a playlist with Internet radio stations in it then just sync the playlist to the Apple TV. One major flaw was that, iTunes had to be running at the same time. Otherwise, the stations would disappear from the Apple TV.

With 2.0.2 update, this is no longer the case. The playlist with the Internet Radio streams would persist even when iTunes is not running on the computer it synced with. However, once you restart the Apple TV, the playlists with Internet Radio streams would disappear.

I have written a post about this on Apple TV Source . So while, we don’t have 100% functionality for Internet Radio yet, it is still much better than before.

Couch Surfer 0.3 Released

by editor @ on April 11, 2008


Good news. Brandon has just released Couch Surfer 0.3. Just in time for us to relax and surf the net on our big screen TV getting ready for the weekend.

Here are some new features of Couch Surfer 0.3

  • accelerated scrolling holds up and downi
  • improved Bookmark support now with support for adding current page
  • History support
  • Back menu
  • USB keyboard support for text entry dialogs.

The best part is that once Couch Surfer 0.3 is installed, USB keyboard feature is available to all other plugins.

Thanks again, Brandon. You da man!

You can get the new software update from Brian’s software page here.

New version of Jaman Player available

by editor @ on April 11, 2008


Jaman has released a new version of its player.  In case you ran into problems getting the Jaman player to work after you upgraded to 2.0.1, this is the version to get.

There are no new features with this update.  However, rest assured that all the requests for enhancements that you sent in have all been forwarded to Jaman.   I have also asked for an installer-only version of file.  They are looking into it.

The file is available here.

Apple TV gets 2.0.1 software update

by editor @ on March 29, 2008

Well, well, well. What’s this? Apple just sneaked this update in without any fanfare? No announcement whatsoever.

After downloading and examining the new software update, I did not notice any new features for this update. It is likely that this is just a maintenance update.

There have been reports that you can now browse movies by genre under “My Movies” now. I haven’t checked this out. However, the one thing I have noticed so far is that the user interface is much more snappy now. Everything just loads much faster. That’s just my impression after playing around with it for about 15 minutes. I could be complete wrong on this one.

Here are some articles from around the web regarding this new “stealth” release:

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