What do an iPod and hard disk recorder have in common? A lot!
The concept of local storage creates the opportunity to direct your own media consumption behaviour. This may sound a little fuzzy. What is means is that to store media – audio and video – at a near place, enables you to watch or listen to it whenever you want. This avoids requiring a huge video server and enormous bandwidth. But when you can store the content at your home you create a store-and-forward verdion of VoD that doesn’t have those requirements.
Equipment is already widely available at electronica stores; not many people are aware of that, I think. Anyway, I got myself the only harddisk recorder available that has an Electronic Programming Guide (EPG) built in; the Philips DVDR 725h. It has an 160 GB hard drive, big enough for about 250 hours of video recording. (There’s also a 80 GB version available: HDRW 720). When i’m not working or spending time with my family, I can now watch something I really want – and therefore recorded – in stead of zapping my spare time away.
Actually, the concept of podcasting is pretty similar. In stead of listening to the radio you configure iPodder to ‘record’ (actually download) the audio that you want to listen to, and at a later time when it suits you, you listen to it using your iPod. Podcasting in a way is audio-on-demand. So my iPod and HD recorder let me direct my media consumption behaviour.