Customer Support and Feedback

Welcome to my blog about Media Center and Media Center Project Management.

For those who don't know a project manager at Microsoft is responsible for pulling all the pieces together. We work with test, development. program management and senior management to both define, drive and release products. My last project was Update Rollup 2 for Media Center.

I finally (and by that I mean several years too late) jumped onto the Microsoft blog bandwagon after attending a conference in New York. It was focused on digital media and open to consumers. I spent three days hearing from and speaking to people who both loved Media Center and who had never heard about the product. I heard a lot of feedback and it made me realize people needed more ways to communicate with us.

As a project manager I'm in a unique position to see across the breadth of what we're doing in Media Center. Some things I can talk about, some are still coming together, but overall I can certainly take feedback.

So here's my first post. I'll be doing my best to post here every few days.

I'll leave the comments open here for any open questions you have about either Media Center or project management.

Talk to everyone soon.



Comments (5)
  1. Mrl72 says:

    David — I have a question on the Away Mode of MCE 2005 that a lot of us are struggling to find answers for. There is a lot of speculation on whether this new mode requires new hardware or not. All that has been mentioned is that it is available on new HP media PCs. If new hardware is required, does it require a MCE compatible motherboard – or is it as simple as a BIOS update.

    Your thoughts??

  2. MSDN Archive says:

    You will need new hardware as well. Away mode is a combination of processor, motherboard (I’m pretty sure on this one) and video card.

    What it essentially does is turn off the video card, mute the audio and spin down the HD.

    I can say it is a nice technology. I have a prototype at home and it helps in both heat and power consumption – but also nice that I can turn it off along with the TV.

  3. Darrel says:

    Not sure if this is right place for this question, but here goes…Will an update to MCE2005 or the new version of Vista allow a user to set a zoom mode preference for channels or content. I.E. allow one to sya always use widescreen mode for HD labeled material and use the 4th zoom mode non-HD material. Perhaps also allowing some channels (which always broadcasr widescreen) to always be set to widescreen. Or maybe even a smart technology that scans the image to notice that the sides are all black (or gray) and could logically be zoomed since there is nothing there. I just worry that many CRT based and plasma based displys are going to be subject to burn-in while people in the family don’t remember to switch modes for long periods of time. Also, with Rollup 2, when you use the zoom feature directly (not right-clicking and choosing zoom) it doesn’t give you the little icon-like pictures to tell you what mode you’re in. What happened to those? Thanks, I love the product for the most part.

  4. JanJ says:

    Think the product desperately need unencrypted QAM support. Just plug your (QAM capable) HDTV tuner into a cable connection or to an OTA antenna. This enables HDTV use to penetrate into the base of analog cable users who just aren’t ready to add a digital cable box and the added monthly cost to watch essentially what they receive on their analog service at present. And HDTV use will expand.

    The spousal factor is against a huge equipment stack with a cable box, PVR (Tivo or Replay TV), DVD player, legacy VCR, and audio control equipment. Simplicity calls for a quality MCE box to take care of all the functions except of course, the legacy VCR in many households.

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