Hard News by Russell Brown


The Art of the Interview

This week's Media7 is a lively affair -- as in: I couldn't shut the buggers up -- with Sean Plunket, Amanda Millar and Jim Tucker discussing the art of the interview.

I've also negotiated permission for the Newsmash section to be made available -- there had been some concern about intellectual property issues with the clips we excerpt, but I think it's pretty clearly fair use for review purposes. It's there in the first part of the programme.

The show is available on TVNZ ondemand, the podcast and as Windows Media clips on the main TVNZ site. And of course, in embeddable form on our YouTube channel.

See also: the Media7 blog, which includes links to several of the interviews we discussed and a statement by Listener editor Pamela Stirling on the Eco-logic business.

The NZOnscreen project, which is working towards the launch of an unprecedented online archive and showcase of New Zealand screen culture, now has a blog. I'm on the trust board overseeing the initiative.

I've said so many nice things about Freeview lately that it seems only fair to point out one area where Freeview will struggle against Sky -- the PVR end of the market. We still haven't really got comfortable with the Topfield satellite Freeview PVR we're using -- or, rather, not using all that often because the MySky a much better consumer device. I can see why Freeview doesn't want to put these on the market until it has done some work on usability.

Meanwhile, we still use the Freeview HD terrestrial box for actually watching broadcast TV, because the sound and picture it provides is so superior.

Sky is hinting that it will launch its own HD services in July. There are no details yet about pricing, but I suspect the box will look a lot like the Sky HD decoder available in Britain. That recently won a Gadget Show PVR shootout against Virgin Media and Tiscali devices -- on the basis, of course, of its great usability. Third-party producers who want to catch up with Sky could start by making better remote controls.

Fevered speculation that the forthcoming 3G iPhone will be able to switch seamlessly between WiFi, 3G and WiMax networks. It'll also be smaller and lighter, through the use of new plastics. So your how-cool-am-I first-gen iPhone will look like a bloody brick in two months' time! Ha!

See also the Listener column I wrote on the grooviness crisis looming if Telecom gets the iPhone contract for New Zealand.

Nic Wise has put a lot of work into a blog post examining the true viability of flat-rate (ie: no data cap) broadband internet and concludes that for international traffic "flat rate is a sham", but national data should be free.

And finally, we had hundreds of entries for the Portishead album giveaway. And , thanks to Random.org, the winners have been drawn. They are Gavo McEwen, Paul Caples, Grant Stone, Danyl Mclauchlan and Lhizz Browne. Congratulations to the winners. And now the rest of you can go and buy the thing …

PS: It turns out that the top Google result for "ian wishart absolute power" is now our own David Haywood's most excellent re-imagining of the book. You might wish to reward David's post with your own dose of linkylove.

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