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RE: NAB Demonstrations



-----Original Message-----
From: bob at bluescreen.com [ mailto:bob at bluescreen.com
<mailto:bob at bluescreen.com> ]
Sent: Wednesday, April 08, 1998 4:52 PM
Subject: Re: NAB Demonstrations

>2) A "Bellevue" (code name) system will be shown in the Compaq booth.  

This image looked surprisingly good, although all the hardware was hidden
and so it was difficult to tell exactly what was actually happening.  The
footage being shown was very limited, and I suspect that like all the other
demos I saw over three days, was selected specifically for content that
went well with the format being evangelized.  

The system had a Lucent 8VSB front end which was receiving a transmission
from a Harris modulator, which in turn was being driven by an MPEG transport
stream generator, just like those driving many of the over-the air tests
around town this last week.  The Lucent card drove a Panasonic hardware
MPEG-2 decoder which front-ended a new ATI display controller card.  (All of
the cards were in the Compaq PC.)  So those three cards basically enabled
the PC to receive and display DTV transmissions.  There was a similar system
in the Comark booth receiving live over-the-air broadcasts from the local
Sinclair experimental DTV station.
 
However, the ATI card in the Compaq booth had something special - a built in
line doubler.  Most of the new PC display cards will have line-doubling
(actually arbitrary scaling) included as standard equipment starting late
this year or early next.  Many of those will and have the new MPEG decode
capability integrated on the same card for basically no extra cost.
 
The monkey footage was chosen because we had it lying around and we were
able to get it compressed in time to make our demo schedule.  There will be
much more to choose from next time around.  (Some of which will be derived
from 720P and 1080I sources.)



Which brings up an interesting point. Sony and several of the set top box
manufacturers have licensed or cross-licensed Windows CE as the OS for
their systems. 

I suggest that you not worry about your TV set crashing.  It will not
happen.  WinCE boots instantly out of a relatively small piece of on-board
ROM (or flash ROM).  Sony and the others aren't stupid.
 
--- Tom McMahon, Microsoft Corporation

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