The thing that I find most disturbing about the whole HDTV conversion (here in the USA) is that it is being forced upon us. (By government prodded by industry). By comparison, the change from black and white to color was handled seamlessly. One could continue to use a black and white set, or get a color set.
It sounds like you think this is being driven by the TV and media industries, which is false.
So you would maintain that the TV manufacturers and consumer electronics industry did not push for this? Certainly they are not the only ones standing to benefit (I focused on them in my earlier post because that part seemed most relevant to the thread). It would be difficult to argue that the changeover isn't giving them more business.
The shutdown of analog broadcasts is being prompted by the FCC, because analog broadcasts require many times the bandwidth of digital ones, and there are few things in this world worth more money and radio frequency spectra. The bandwidth currently occupied by TV signals will be free for some other purpose.
I can't really argue with your other points, but I thought it would make you feel better to know that the switch to digital is being done for legitimate reasons which may ultimately benefit everybody.
I was aware of the intended redisposition of the spectrum. Whether it is prompted by the FCC, or by those who wish to make a packet by using this spectrum for their own ends is perhaps debatable, and a moot point. Given the way the government has handled the hand-out of other valuable public resources recently, the prospect does bode well.
When the TV broadcast spectrum was initially doled out there were proposals that had much better provision of public good (which somehow never came to pass). Small instances of abuse - the inclusion of shopping channels under public access.
More recently, look at cellular phones. Here we have an industry straight from the days of the robber barons. They make obscene profits, they ride rough-shod over customers (routinely sighted as the number one industry for customer dissatisfaction, etc). If the cell phone spectrum were managed more for the public good it could make a more reasonable return to the public purse (either in terms of more affordable use, or in terms of revenue to public coffers).
To bring it back a little more to green computing - consider phone handsets. Phone handsets generate a large amount of e-waste. Since they are bundled with the service, it is often not possible to keep a handset when changing carriers. Since they give you a new handset with renewed service, people take the new handset and toss out the old. (What is the point of reduce/recycle/reuse if you are going to be paying for a new handset - whether you use it or not.)
Requiring carriers to open their networks and prohibiting locking of handsets, would help reduce e-waste. Likewise requiring those offering subsidized handsets, etc. in return for long term accounts to make prominent offer cash (or credit) alternative of equal value would help reduce waste. So you can get the new "hoozy-watzit" phone free with your 2 year subscription, or you can get the retail value of the phone in cash, or you can get that much credit to your account.
Given the well-known abuses of public trust exhibited by industry and the government in handling the cell phone spectrum among other things, the prospect of another valuable public resource being put up for ravage by the highest bidder does not warm my heart. (Please do not take this as an anti-government rant. It is more that in these days of "deregulation" etc that the government is over-responsive to interests of business, wealthy and short-term profit, at the expense of the individual and sustainability.)
I don't have much experience with digital myself, as most of the stores naturally try to give you the best image possible. There was one instance, however, in which there was also an old low quality source which looked like it might have been VHS, and this video looked absolutely horrible on that large 1080p or 720p screen. It was more like watching patterns of big pixel blocks moving across the screen, than the content itself. I think it would have looked decent on a CRT.
Exactly - my comments in previous post were partly partly from looking at digital broadcast signal of an SDTV program (just some random TV show rerun). But even the promotional material used by some of the stores shows similar problems. I was careful to stand back at a reasonable viewing distance, and still the digital artifacts draw attention like a stubbed toe.