They Didn't Ask Me (dr_phil_physics) wrote,
They Didn't Ask Me

Living In The Future

A friend of ours, Craig Benjamin, is involved with Big History. He's a prof at GVSU and travels all around the world to speak on Big History -- and he's also been doing some guest spots for the History Channel. In particular, History 2 has a new series called, surprise-surprise, Big History.

Unfortunately, our analog cable connection doesn't get History 2. However, there is a History Channel app for the Kindle Fire HD, which shows all sorts of History and History 2 offerings, including the episodes of Big History for a couple of weeks after they first aired.

We found this out on Thursday morning. And since my Kindle Fire HD has two ports, one USB and one HDMI and our Sony TV has a couple of HDMI ports, I popped over to Amazon and looked for HDMI cables for the Kindle Fire HD. That's an HDMI to micro HDMI cable. Six feet was $7, fifteen was ten. Fifteen feet will stretch across the living room. And Amazon Prime guaranteed delivery by Saturday -- today.

And... it works! Oh, I had to figure the order of turning on devices and had to dig up the TV's own remote to work the Input menu to select HDMI 2, but we watched last week's pair of Big History episodes -- Salt and Horses. And then scrolled around and watched Episode 1 of last year's United Stats of America. Cool.

Of course Big History is really a study of Systems, my favorite topic. And it's not as if others haven't worked to connect seemingly disparate bits of information. A couple of people I know are going back to look at Carl Sagan's Cosmos and James Burke's Connections. And to my mind, one has to add to that the 1970s BBC/PBS Civilisation: A Personal View by Kenneth Clark.

But it's important to take a new and, dare I say it, bigger view of how things got the way they did. I mean, consider that we were watching streaming video over the Internet, coming in by DSL line, broadcast over the air by WiFi, into my tablet, through an HDMI cable and the picture comes out here -- on our TV. Easy, huh? Simple. (grin)

Of course I should probably check our Sony Blu-Ray player and see if History Channel is one of their preloaded options. (double-grin)

It's all a matter of Systems...

Dr. Phil

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