The Simpsons Marathon is Coming to FXX: Set your DVRs for these 25 episodes

Posted by: on Aug 18, 2014 | No Comments
Simpsons Universe

Simpsons Universe

FXX starts their Simpsons marathon this Thursday, 8/21 at 10am. 25 seasons, 552 episodes. A metric fuckton of Homer, Marge, Lisa, Bart, Selma, Patti, Flanders, Kang, Kodos, Dr. Hibert, Sideshow Bob, Krusty, Milhouse, Nelson’s “Ha-Has!” and even Cletus and Brandine. R.I.P. Troy McClure.

Many near the tail end are barely worth watching, but who cares, the first 10 seasons or so were golden. Many will argue the “Who Shot Mr. Burns?” episode jumped the shark but it continued to be great for many years, and even today, an occasional episode does good and doesn’t make you pine for the good ol’ days. (Admittedly rare.)

The Simpsons might be the greatest thing ever put on TV. Conservatives hated it (of course, because they hate everything) and it was considered crude trash by the cultured gentry of yesteryear.

Today, it’s a cultural cornerstone to a whole generation (X?) and the episodes have not only aged well but somehow remain eerily relevant. (See The Cartridge Family.)

Let’s say you’re a happenin’ person with a life and will only have time for 25 episodes. Set your DVRs for these 25 — whether seeing them for the first time or revisiting, they embody what The Simpsons did best: snark, humor, commentary, and cultural criticism. (Too lazy to put them in particular order.)

  1. Simpsons Roasting on an Open Fire (S1E1!)
  2. The Cartridge Family
  3. Homer the Great (the Stonecutters episode)
  4. City of New York vs. Homer Simpson
  5. Homer’s Phobia
  6. Marge vs. The Monorail
  7. King Size Homer
  8. Bart after Dark
  9. Lisa the Vegetarian
  10. Mr. Plow
  11. Two Dozen and One Greyhounds
  12. Bart gets an Elephant
  13. Homer Badman
  14. $pringfield
  15. Treehouse of Horror I-X
  16. Dog of Death
  17. Colonel Homer
  18. Bart vs. Australia
  19. A Fish Called Selma
  20. Itchy & Scratchy Land
  21. Marge Be Not Proud
  22. One Fish, Two Fish, Blowfish, Blue Fish
  23. Two Cars in Every Garage and Three Eyes on Every Fish
  24. The Simpsons 138th Episode Spectacular
  25. Deep Space Homer
  26. The Last Temptation of Krusty
  27. The Springfield Files

Yeah, a couple bonus episodes, and will likely add more.


Posted by: on Nov 1, 2007 | No Comments

These “perpendicular” drives out today, basically the Seagate and Hitachi’s >= 750 GB, seem to be less than reliable. I swapped out my boot drives on my Quad Power Mac with two 1TB Hitachis, and put ’em in a RAID mirror to save myself the pain of doing backups. It took all of 1 day for problems to appear. I’ve RMA’d the drive, which had given me some issues before, but the lesson here is RAID mirrors are your friend. I’ve had similar odd behavior from a Seagate Barracuda 750 GB. These drives tend to run hot, and pressing them into any kind of major labor seems to wilt these precious little flowers. I’m a little annoyed that most manufactures now offer “Enterprise” class drives, supposedly giving you 24/7 reliability, which makes me wonder what the non-Enterprise drives lack. Apparently reliability. 950 GB of free space, 50% availability! Rock on.

Oh, and now that TiVo Series 3 and TiVo HD officially support eSATA drive expansions, I have one sage piece of advice that will save you a ton of money: if you build your own, absolutely purchase a drive rated for DVR use. The Seagate DB35 or Hitachi CinemaStar series. The run quite a bit more silent (good in the living room), but also produce less heat, and seek slower, which doesn’t thrash the head in 24/7 DVR use.

TiVo Series 3: Rockin’ at 1TB with the eSATA Upgrade

Posted by: on May 10, 2007 | No Comments

Sweet Jesus, this not-so-secret secret works! I pumped up my T3 by another 750GB today, yielding 131 HD and 1244 SD hours (up from ~32 HD hours, which was pretty weak.) Bring it on Planet Earth, you 11-part series of HD goodness!

The one kicker seems to be divorcing your new drive results in destroying anything since the two were married. Just like in real life. Something to keep in mind if you plan to start off small.

My TiVo decided to do a service upgrade during the whole thing, but it worked anyway. I went for this Apricorn EZ-Bus DTS dealie, but only because the name was just so damn sexy. Oh, and because you want a fan on anything that runs as hot as Seagate’s 750 and gets constantly poked by your Series 3.

Something to tide you over until they enable that damn TiVoToGo. (And no, today’s service upgrade didn’t deliver that. Some additional nice-to-haves, and ever more attention paid to that TiVoCast feature that no one uses nor really cares about.)

We’ve come a long way since that first 30GB Series 1, baby.

Briefly: Roxio Toast Titanium 8

Posted by: on Jan 8, 2007 | One Comment

Don’t waste your money for the TiVo integration unless you use Toast all the time. (And if you do, this seems to be the cheapest option for upgrades.)

Use this. And it’s free. Sure, the interface could use work, but it does work…

It’s an odd move, especially considering that after 2 years of promising TiVoToGo for the Mac, they’ve kinda-sorta-delivered it in a $99 package offered by a third-party. Roxio’s included a “TiVo Transfer” program and a “Toast Video Player” application for playing the DRM protected files (which appears to be a stripped down version of ElGato’s EyeTV software). About the only unique feature is an “auto-transfer” feature which allows you to flag a particular show for download. It does work, but again, not worth the money. I realize that the DRM codec is licensed and therefore cost someone money, but I’m not sure who in this case. I’d be interested to learn the biz details of this unholy marriage. Seems ElGato or Roxio could release this part alone for like $20-$30 and not piss quite as many people off.

Toast 8 suffers another interface change, this time with those lame “fade in” windows and other animations which look pretty if I were working a kiosk at a museum, but don’t do much for productivity. (Thankfully, there is an option to turn them off.)

This also, of course, does nothing for that Series 3 sitting in my living room right now. (My CableCards don’t come until Friday, Comcast “insisted” on “professional installation,” but some mild amount of bitching got the $16 fee waived. I can deal with the $1.50/mo card rental fee — I’ll be saving a whole $2/mo when I send one those horrid boxes back w/the Comcast guy. And, oddly, I didn’t get the “You’ll have no OnDemand!” freak out, only a weak upsell for Digital Voice. I did find it amusing that the recorded message said I’d experience “longer than expected wait times” due to “strong demand for Digital Voice” and I got a live person within, oh, 20 seconds.)

TiVo DRM Cracked

Posted by: on Dec 4, 2006 | No Comments

Get to it before the lawyers do!

On a Mac:

tar xvf tivodecode-0.1.2
cd tivodecode-0.1.2
make clean
make tivodecode

The binary’s in objects.dir. Galleon’s good for pulling, VLC will play it, use ffmpegx or something to convert if you want QT/iPod friendly.

TiVo’s got no one to blame but themselves after having no TiVo2Go for the Mac for like 2 years. I’m surprised it took as long as it did.