Sorry, I haven't been around, but things have been busy here. To cover a few things.
1) Boxes with time problems - we had a software issue that causes boxes to shift time by an hour. It required a new code download.
2) Boxes with scrolling numbers in the display - as we push new software code down to settops, it essentially is a process where we command the settop to request the new code be downloaded. At any given instance, there is a possiblity that the box just doesn't get the code, generally due to a signal strength issue or internal box failure. In that case, it just continues to request the new code.
3) HD-DVR - BHN started initial deployment of SA 8300HD's in Tampa this week. We're able to start in that region because they run SARA operating software, while in Central Florida we run Passport. Because Passport is written by somebody other than SA, any releases to support new SA hardware are always a couple months behind the SARA release. The Passport code for the 8300 is being tested, and depending on the results of testing and time to certify the code, I'd expect to have it available in about 2-3 months. It is a huge improvement over the 8000HD, and comes with a couple of nifty features which I'll demonstrate at the CFHDS tour on the 13th.
4) Heathrow - I guarantee that with the equipment upgrades we're going to be installing, the picture and product/channel offerings will be head and shoulders above Heathrow Cable. Fred and I have had the discussion about analog channels, but here are some points to consider:
a) Digital Channels - Digital transmission mediums are vastly different, and BHN has some substantial advantages in my opinion.
b) BHN Digital vs. DBS digital - The DBS providers have a tool that allows "variable bit rate" encoding, meaning they can crank up or down the compression at will. Look at the vast number of picture quality complaints on HBO as the Sunday Ticket HD games cranked up, with 3 HD channels crammed onto the same transponder. Look at the over-compression of the local SD channels compared to the main "cable" networks. BHN does not own compression equipment, we've resisted vendors who pushed us to "rate-shape", etc.
c) The vast majority of our local signals, both analog and digital, are delivered to BHN headends via fiber, instead of over the air. We carried WKMG's 2001 Super Bowl broadcast months before their tower was even put up. The signal is significantly less susceptible to disruption than OTA, even in a digital transmission.
5) For slimoli: Try BHN - you've got nothing to lose. Hook it up and try it for a month, and form your own opinion. With no contracts, you can turn it all back in to us at any time. I don't recommend you try this in reverse, as the DBS contract requirements will tie your hands significantly.
Finally, with regard to "Guess we know where AVS forum stands"...I agree. I think its obvious they stand firmly in support of increased public awareness of High Definition and advanced technology entertainment, and that Ken H. is firmly convinced that political discussions (other than the FCC) belong somewhere else. Exactly as it should be. I value the information and feedback I get from this site and you "users" too much to lose it.