Tag Archives | tv

Expat Tech: Miro, Your TiVo for the Internet + Your Favorite Shows

A lot of people were interested in our post about using the Slingbox to stream your TV over the Internet and watch it overseas, and while it works fairly well, it requires some setup, including having a cable and Internet connection in the States. Unfortunately, not everyone has this luxury. So, what do you do when you want to watch your favorite U.S. TV show in Buenos Aires? You use Miro.

In technical terms, Miro is a free, open source Internet TV and video player that can automatically download videos from RSS-based channels. It also features a built-in BitTorrent client. What does this mean for you? It means you can use Miro to automatically download video from the Internet and then play it back at a later time. Lifehacker has a great article on using Miro as your TiVo for Internet video that explains this in more detail.

So, that’s all great, but you may not want to watch YouTube videos all day. Well, you don’t have to. When you combine Miro with the TVrss site, Miro can now download hundreds of TV and premium cable shows automatically. In fact, you can even download whole seasons of shows.  Not only that, but many of the shows are available in HD quality. Pretty cool.

So, is this legal? Well, as HackCollege explains:

Now comes the questionable part. You have to install RSS feeds that syndicate downloads of your TV shows. This usually involves piracy. Ideally, someday, the networks will man-up and make feeds of their TV shows regularly available – in which case you can still follow this tutorial, obtaining the feed from a legal resource.

Until then, this method is about as legal as recording a show on VHS, but a whole hell of a lot easier. This ain’t your typical torrenting experience. No abrasive pictures promising singles in your area and no silhouettes in the audience standing up in the way of a camera smuggled into a theater. It’s clean, simple and the quality is pristine.

Read the rest of this article from HackCollege for full details on how to set it all up.


Expat Tech: Slingbox

I don’t watch a lot of TV, but before I left for Buenos Aires, I decided it would be nice to watch some U.S. TV stations and shows while I was here. Watching my DVR would be great too, and I also wanted to be able to watch Michigan football games this fall. Luckily, The Slingbox comes to the rescue.

The Slingbox lets you watch your TV over the Internet on any connected PC, Mac or mobile phone. The small box plugs into your TV on one end and high-speed Internet connection on the other.  An infrared controller attaches to your cable box and controls the functions of it (including your DVR). You then simply install the SlingPlayer software on your laptop or mobile phone and connect.  You’re now watching and controlling your home TV from wherever you are. (You can check out their flash video for a better explanation.)

All right, so this tech trick requires some setup before you leave (or a friend willing to set it up for you), a working high-speed Internet connection and cable TV, but if you have some place to set it up, it works pretty well.  I have the SlingPlayer software running on my wireless laptop and connected to the TV with an S-video cable. A wireless mouse lets me control the on-screen remote from the couch.  Now, I won’t have to miss any episodes of The Daily Show even though I’m thousands of miles away and I can still skip the commercials!