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"High-definition DVD is the last physical media format there will ever be"

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"High-definition DVD is the last physical media format there will ever be"

Old 10-24-05, 06:44 PM
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"High-definition DVD is the last physical media format there will ever be"

So sayeth Bill Gates:
The future according to Mr. Gates

Software is where the action is, America's richest man tells southwestern Ontario computer science students, looking ahead to a world spanned by streaming information over the Internet.
By Free Press news services


WATERLOO -- Bill Gates has seen the future and it doesn't include CDs, DVDs or anything like them.

America's richest man told University of Waterloo students yesterday the future lies in streaming digital information over the Internet.

"(High-definition DVD) is the last physical media format there will ever be," said Gates.

Gates also said he's going to need lots of software engineers over the next decade to achieve his goals.

Later, the Microsoft chairperson and chief software architect told reporters the Internet is the great leveller that will bring information to students in developing countries.

His predictions mesh with what many in the computer industry say is a growing move to change how computers are used -- away from storing information and programs on computer hard drives and toward using the Net to store and retrieve data and applications so they're accessible from anywhere.

The University of Waterloo visit was the only Canadian stop on Gates's three-day tour of six university campuses in North America.

Gates's tour aims to renew interest in computer science and technology research.

"In the next decade, there'll be a shortage of great software engineers. We'll be scouring the schools for them," Gates told the rapt audience.

"Software is the place where the action is . . . it is an area that will continue to generate jobs. This is the golden age of software."

Microsoft hires about 1,000 people a year.

He said he would never run for public office because he can better effect global change through software development and the charitable foundation he runs with his wife.

Microsoft, once the tech world's hottest and hippest company, marks its 30th anniversary this year.
http://lfpress.ca/newsstand/News/Nat...61625-sun.html



What do you think?
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Old 10-24-05, 06:51 PM
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I think Bill Gates is the beast.
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Old 10-24-05, 06:57 PM
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I suppose it could be possible, at least in terms of prerecorded media, but people are always going to want to back up their media to something physical. Certainly there will continue to be advancements made in storage technology, even if the content providers don't embrace them for distribution.
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Old 10-24-05, 07:12 PM
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"You'll never need more than 640K of memory!"
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Old 10-24-05, 07:31 PM
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Yeah, right.

I mean, in a society driven to consume, there will be nothing to consume. No way. They still sell CDs even though mp3 is around. They still sell DVD even though streaming video is available both legally and illegally. I do not want to rely on my connection to get anything. No offense, but we do not all live in the city where high quality high speed is abundent. Where I am moving is just outside of the city and I have one choice - Comcast - I am better off than alot of people having that one choice. I do not like relying on someone else to get my video when I could buy it once and not worry about a line being down.
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Old 10-24-05, 07:34 PM
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yea but you are looking at it in terms of today. HDVD isnt even out yet. and then you got 6-10 years of a lifespan for the format. so you have to figure that in 10 years, everyone is gonna have high speed internet available to them.
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Old 10-24-05, 07:35 PM
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People like to buy and collect media. As long as there's a market for the physical product, there will be companies offering the product. I'm one of the people who will always be willing to buy the product. I just like having a physical collection of movies that I can display in my home. If DVD actually is the final step for physical media formats...then I'll look into printing custom covers and burning my downloaded movies to discs. Regardless, I'll continue to add movies to my in-hand collection...as will many others.

-JP
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Old 10-24-05, 08:15 PM
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Originally Posted by Numanoid

What do you think?
I think they should've hired me when they had the chance.
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Old 10-24-05, 08:34 PM
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I'm sure Bill Gates would love for movies to move to the internet because he stands to make a killing. But he's in fantasy land. First of all, I don't see studios allowing legal hi-def copies of their films on the internet anytime soon. If they do, then they'd use something like DRM, which nobody likes, at least that I know of. Of course, only a rare few of the DVD buying public would want to fool with downloading films on the computer. They want to buy a physical copy and own it. So I think Bill is smoking the reefer.




so you have to figure that in 10 years, everyone is gonna have high speed internet available to them.
I think that's a way too optimistic a prediction.
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Old 10-24-05, 08:40 PM
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Originally Posted by BassDude
"You'll never need more than 640K of memory!"
There we go. That is my answer to this completely.

Everyone seems to think that we will all be happy with video on demand in 20 years, but I just don't see it. I know I will be one of the grumpy old timers that still wants to actually own my movies and music.

However, if the DRM on Blu-Ray is as bad as currently rumored standard DVD may actually be the last physical media I ever buy.
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Old 10-24-05, 08:59 PM
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I've put two small sections of this article in bold:

http://www.usatoday.com/tech/news/te...diamonds_x.htm

10/6/2005

Man-made diamonds sparkle with potential

By Kevin Maney, USA TODAY

BOSTON In the back room of an unmarked brown building in a run-down strip mall, eight machines, each the size of a bass drum, are making diamonds.

That's right making diamonds. Real ones, all but indistinguishable from the stones formed by a billion or so years' worth of intense pressure, later to be sold at Tiffany's.

The company doing this is Apollo Diamond, a tiny outfit started by a former Bell Labs scientist. Peer inside Apollo's stainless steel-and-glass machines, and you can see single-crystal diamonds literally growing amid hot pink gases.

This year, Apollo expects to grow diamonds as big as 2 carats. By the end of 2005, it might expand to 10 carats. The diamonds will probably start moving into the jewelry market as early as next year at perhaps one-third the price of a mined diamond.

The whole concept turns the fundamental idea of a diamond on its head. The ability to manufacture diamonds could change business, products and daily life as much as the arrival of the steel age in the 1850s or the invention of the transistor in the 1940s.

In technology, the diamond is a dream material. It can make computers run at speeds that would melt the innards of today's computers. Manufactured diamonds could help make lasers of extreme power. The material could allow a cellphone to fit into a watch and iPods to store 10,000 movies, not just 10,000 songs. Diamonds could mean frictionless medical replacement joints. Or coatings perhaps for cars that never scratch or wear out.

Scientists have known about the possibilities for years. But they've been held back because mined diamonds are too expensive and too rare. And they're hard to form into wafers and shapes that would be most useful in products.

Manufacturing changes that. It's like the difference between having to wait for lightning to start a fire vs. knowing how to start it by hand.

"I'm just so completely awed by this technology," says Sonia Arrisonof tech analysis group Pacific Research Institute. "Basically, anything that relies on computing power will accelerate."

Arno Penzias, a venture capitalist and Nobel Prize winner for physics, says, "This diamond-fabrication story marks a high-profile milestone on an amazing scientific journey."

"We can't begin to see all the things that can happen because single diamond crystals can be made," says Apollo co-founder Robert Linares, elegant and slim in a golf shirt, slacks and loafers as he sits at the two plastic folding tables that make up Apollo's low-budget conference room. "We are only at the beginning."

Linares has worked on the technology for 15 years, much of that time in his garage. From the start, he did this because of the promise of diamonds in technology. Linares wasn't trying to make gems. In fact, he didn't think he could.

Then he had a happy accident. Well, actually, time will tell whether the accident was a happy one.

Two different paths to diamonds

In 1955, General Electric figured out how to use room-size machines to put carbon under extremely high pressure and make diamond dust and chips. The diamond material wasn't pure or big enough for gems or digital technology. But it had industrial uses, such as diamond-tipped saws. Such saws made it possible, for instance, to cut granite into countertops.

In the ensuing decades, companies and inventors tried to make bigger, better diamonds. But they didn't get far. By the 1990s, researchers were focused on two different paths to diamonds.

One was brute force. Some Russians became pretty good at it, and their machines were eventually brought to Florida by Gemesis. That company now crushes carbon under 58,000 atmospheres of pressure at 2,300 degrees Fahrenheit, until the stuff crystallizes into yellowish diamonds. The stones are attractive for jewelry but not pure enough for digital technology. Gemesis sells its gems through retailers at around $5,000 per carat. A mined yellow diamond can cost four times more.

The other process is called chemical vapor deposition, or CVD. It's more subtle. It uses a combination of carbon gases, temperature and pressure that, Linares says, re-creates conditions present at the beginning of the universe. Atoms from the vapor land on a tiny diamond chip placed in the chamber. Then the vapor particles take on the structure of that diamond growing the diamond, atom by atom, into a much bigger diamond.

CVD can make diamonds that are clear and utterly pure. It's also a way to make diamond wafers, much like silicon wafers for computer chips. The CVD process can be tweaked by putting in enough boron to allow the diamond to conduct a current. That turns the diamond into a semiconductor.

A handful of companies and scientists, including Sumitomo in Japan and the global diamond powerhouse De Beers, have chased CVD. But by most accounts, Linares is out front.

After receiving his doctorate in materials science from Rutgers University, Linares joined Bell Labs and worked on crystals that would be crucial in telecommunications. In the 1980s, he started Spectrum Technology to make single-crystal Gallium Arsenide chips, one of the key components in cellphones. Spectrum became the material's biggest U.S. supplier, and Linares eventually sold the company to NERCO Advanced Materials.

He then dropped out of business, putting his time and money into his pet project: making CVD diamonds for cutting tools and electronics. "Gemstones were the furthest thing from my mind," Linares says.

Breakthrough in a garage workshop

Linares built machines in his garage, superheating carbon in suburban Boston while his neighbors went about their lives. He got the CVD process to work, at first making tiny diamond chips. He formed Apollo and started down the path to industrial diamonds. Then Linares inadvertently left a diamond piece in a beaker of acid over a weekend. The acid cleaned up excess carbon essentially coal that had stayed on the diamond.

"When I came in Monday, I couldn't see the (stone) in the beaker," Linares says. The diamond was colorless and pure. "That's when I realized we could do gemstones."

For Apollo, there are lots of good things about making gems. Diamond jewelry will be a $60 billion global market this year, and it's growing fast. If Apollo can snag just 1%, the company would become a $600 million rocket.

Also, gems could become a source of revenue quickly. While the military and companies are working on tech inventions that use diamonds, a real market for diamond technology might be a decade away. By selling gems, Apollo can make money now to fund the research for forthcoming diamond tech products.

That solution, though, brings two huge problems. One is that Apollo doesn't know the gem business. Its employees are technologists. Aside from Linares, Apollo is run by his son, Bryant, an MBA who started and sold an information services company. Vice President Patrick Doering had been lead scientist at Spectrum.

"We are not gemstone guys," Bryant Linares admits. They don't know consumer marketing or retailing. Bryant Linares notes that Apollo plans to split into a tech business run by the Linareses and a gem business run by a gem veteran they have yet to hire. For now, though, the gem business is a distraction with a steep learning curve.

Apollo's other problem is De Beers, which doesn't like what Apollo is doing one bit. De Beers launched a public relations campaign and an education program for jewelers, all aimed at portraying mined diamonds as real and eternal and CVD or Gemesis diamonds as fake and tacky.

Both Apollo and Gemesis want to market their gems as "cultured diamonds," taking a cue from cultured pearls. De Beers is fighting that label. "It's misleading and unacceptable," says De Beers executive Simon Lawson. "It makes people think (manufacturing diamonds) is an organic process, and it's not."

Even highly trained diamond experts find it almost impossible to tell a CVD diamond from a mined one. De Beers is determined to help by making machines that can detect the slightest difference in the way the two materials refract light.

As part of that effort, De Beers stepped up its own CVD research "focused on producing state-of-the-art synthetic diamonds for testing on our equipment," Lawson says. Referring to CVD diamonds, he adds, "We don't see gemological applications fitting into it."

So by getting into gems, little Apollo made a powerful, determined enemy.

A long list of possibilities

The tech side is an entirely different story. Just about every entity in technology can get excited about diamonds.

The military's DARPA research arm has been pumping money into CVD projects. Companies such as Lucent are on the trail of holographic optical storage, which will use lasers to store data in 3D patterns, cramming huge amounts of information in tiny spaces. CVD diamonds would vault holographic storage ahead, helping bring about the 10,000-movie iPod.

Tech company Textron is a big fan of Apollo. Textron has been working on super lasers that might become weapons or be used like a camera flash for spy satellites, so they could take photos from space at night.

"Thermal management is a major challenge to increasing a laser's power," explains Textron scientist Yulin Wang. The diamond has the highest thermal conductivity of any material, which allows it to quickly move heat away from the laser's insides. Textron needs large, pure diamond pieces for its lasers and finally found them at Apollo.

CVD diamonds can help solve one of the computer industry's biggest challenges. Companies such as Intel advance computer chip technology by squeezing microscopic wires closer together while making the chips run ever faster. But that's making the chips increasingly hotter. At some point this decade, the chips could run so hot they'd melt. But not if the chips were based on diamond wafers instead of silicon.

"Using diamonds as semiconductors will continue Moore's Law," says Pacific Research's Arrison, referring to an observation about the continual increase in speed and power since chips were invented.

The list of possibilities for man-made diamonds goes on. "By most measures, diamond is the biggest and best," says a research paper written about CVD by Paul May at the U.K.'s University of Bristol. It's the hardest material, it won't expand in heat, won't wear, is chemically inert and optically transparent, May says.

"Once (manufactured) diamond is available, developers will find all kinds of other things to do with it," Robert Linares says.

Manufactured diamonds will be like other inventions that were so profound because they made new things possible. Steel allowed engineers to dream of skyscrapers and suspension bridges. Transistors led to computers and pacemakers and so much else. So this may be the beginning of the diamond age of technology.

Says Linares: "The genie is out of the bottle, and it can never be put back in."
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Old 10-24-05, 09:00 PM
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Originally Posted by BassDude
"You'll never need more than 640K of memory!"
You beat me to it. Good for you!

Gates was wrong then, and he's wrong now.
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Old 10-24-05, 09:04 PM
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Originally Posted by NatrlBornThrllr
People like to buy and collect media. As long as there's a market for the physical product, there will be companies offering the product. I'm one of the people who will always be willing to buy the product. I just like having a physical collection of movies that I can display in my home. If DVD actually is the final step for physical media formats...then I'll look into printing custom covers and burning my downloaded movies to discs. Regardless, I'll continue to add movies to my in-hand collection...as will many others.

-JP
Exactly.

In addition, I don't want to be at the whim of what some central authority wants to allow me to watch. Once I own something in a physical medium that I can store on my shelf, I don't have to worry about the George Lucases of the world claiming that it "no longer exists," or about anyone saying that Bugs Bunny cartoons are "racist."
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Old 10-24-05, 09:06 PM
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Well, this really does seem to be the way things are headed, but I'm really curious about how movies essentially "on-demand" (while way cool because of the extensive library that can be made available) still doesn't fulfill that need to have a shelf full of your own collection to arrange and glance at (much more pleasing than a cable tv-guide) and show off. Also you're dependent on that connection and can't just pull your movie/music album off the shelf to take and enjoy off line.

That all said, Gates makes a very good point. Until we discover magic crystals that can hold millions of gigs, really what else is left once we have these HD discs that hold way way more than we even need?
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Old 10-24-05, 09:32 PM
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The 640k quote is bogus.

Not that Gates is always right (ha ha ha), but c'mon, people.
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Old 10-24-05, 09:53 PM
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Wired debunks the Gates 640K quote myth.

The glib amongst us who rely on only their ability to regurgitate a myth that they themselves first swallowed without a critical thought will have to work a bit harder.

DJ
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Old 10-24-05, 10:46 PM
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Is this Mr. Gates "stupid comment" for 2005? He seems to make one every year. For a guy who's so smart, he makes a lot of odd leaps of logic. People will ALWAYS want the physical format, if only because they like to own shiny boxes with cool covers.

Gates seems like the kind of guy who in the 80's would have said that digital watches would make the word "clockwise" meaningless and that people would stop buying books because they could read them on computers.
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Old 10-24-05, 11:37 PM
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Great topic. This is ultimately the way things are heading, be it a pay-per-view or subscription service, limited views, etc. Personally, I like curling up with a physical book, reading the liner notes as I'm listening to CD, or admiring the DVD collection on my shelf. I don't think I'm alone. However, manufacturing and distrubution costs, along with the fact that the studios don't make any money on the secondary market (which is where I get most of my DVDs-from pawn shops) will eventually nip my cute little media collection in the bud. I think it will be a loooong time until this happens- but it will happen. As far as having to count on having a connection to access media, I definitely see the frustration there, but I wouldn't dream of not having internet access now. I don't think I'm alone there either.

Simply put- I think it sucks, but it's headed our way.
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Old 10-25-05, 12:55 AM
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dj, I might not have read the article closely enough, but all I see as evidence that Gates didn't say that, is his own denial. Other than that, I don't see any other evidence. Of course he's going to deny it now.

For what it's worth, I didn't claim that Gates said that. I'm only saying all that Wired article provides for proof is his denial.
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Old 10-25-05, 01:04 AM
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Originally Posted by Terrell
dj, I might not have read the article closely enough, but all I see as evidence that Gates didn't say that, is his own denial. Other than that, I don't see any other evidence. Of course he's going to deny it now.
Er...and how else does one prove that one never said anything? Would you prefer that Gates also link to every single website, cite to every audio recording of him, cite to every video recording of him, etc., as all showing that he never said it? What evidence would you like there to be to prove that someone never said something?

"Of course he's going to deny it now"? Why "of course," exactly? Is it really an "of course" that every public figure will deny well-documented things they've said? It seems to me that, if anything, "of course" they wouldn't bother denying such a thing. Why would one bother? If Gates actually said it, and it was on record, then he would be called out, with the appropriate proof, as soon as he denied it. If he actually said it, then denying it would do nothing. Of course.

Gates says he never said it. Everyone else just quotes it from no place in particular (and usually with no standardized version of the quote - everyone just makes up from memory, slightly differently from the made up version they heard in the first place). It is an urban legend without even a good pedigree, and even in this alleged day of informed citizens with easy access to a wealth of research materials, it proves that urban legends can continue to flourish.

It's not Gates's responsiblity to prove he didn't say it, anyway. If the people claiming he said it have proof, they should easily be able come forth with it, right? So come forth, quoters of the quote. Prove it.

I'll wait.*

DJ

* But not whilst holding my breath.

Last edited by djtoell; 10-25-05 at 01:08 AM.
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Old 10-25-05, 01:12 AM
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O, yeah...here we go again. The greedy man and his predictions again!! I would like to see him explain his arguments to people that rely on subtitles to view films a.k.s non-English speakers!! Or those that still buy books and comics, etc while there are mind-blowing CGI effects being available over the net in the form of amazing games, etc. Somehow many still like the feel of a "book"....remember it? So, I am sure many will be still around buying DVDs just like those that still buy CDs (me).

With other words...nice try Mr.Moneyman!!

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Old 10-25-05, 01:15 AM
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Originally Posted by pro-bassoonist
O, yeah...here we go again. The greedy man and his predictions again!! I would like to see him explain his arguments to people that rely on subtitles to view films a.k.s non-English speakers!!
Are subtitles only possible on physical media?

DJ
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Old 10-25-05, 01:36 AM
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never gonna happen...not unless he owned all the studios...

i don't subscribe to cable...don't like much tv. i get news and such on rabbit ears, and have an extensive library of my own to pull from. i don't want it, don't need it, won't subscribe to it.
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Old 10-25-05, 02:04 AM
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I think he just wants people to buy his software......greedy fucker
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Old 10-25-05, 02:40 AM
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Of course, you have to bear in mind that the random sampling of opinions on this forum is highly skewed. After all, as DVD collectors / hobbyists / enthusiasts, most of us here will always prefer to own physical media rather than simply have downloadable access. However, that well may not be the case for the public at large, especially if access to such content is ever made cheap, fast and relatively reliable. A big "if" I know, but probably well within the realm of possibility sometime in the near future.

I myself will always hold onto my various media collections because A) they're already paid for and instantly accessible, and B) a physical inventory will always have more real value than a theoretical one.

I do certainly hope that continued advances are made in ultra high density digital storage however. I would sure like to have a dependable large scale backup of all of my media.
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