Sunday, October 02, 2005

Standards & quality

In many cases there is a tradeoff between standardization and performance - take, for example, Cray's choice not to implement IEEE 754 floating point arithmetic: it made for some compatibility issues, but performance needs won out. I think we may have another case coming up here:

A couple of things strike me about this article: first, and most important, that the reason Microsoft cites for not wanting to go with Blu-ray is that it is "several years away from delivering on the media" - so what? Why build on something that's not as good? If the technology isn't ready, then work on it and have a tiny bit of patience. If this is a standard we're going to have for a while, let's not mess it up. If HD-DVD becomes the standard, it might be irregularly followed and implemented because it was taken up too hastily.

The other thing that I find curious is the statement "Microsoft sees it as critical that all next-generation DVDs can be ripped onto a computer." Hmm, funny, considering all the paranoia about sharing. I prefer having my media (especially music) on hard disk rather than having to swap in and out optical disk, but I'm rather surprised that Microsoft takes this into consideration, especially over copyright concerns. I guess they're planning to do really good DRM. That may turn out to be a good thing, but I'm still wary.

And what are my two cents about the formats? Well, Blu-ray is a cooler name :-)


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