Monday, June 15, 2009

Wireless House Project

Late last century there were numerous projects to provide public Internet access, though libraries and community groups. These are perhaps an echo of the Wireless House in Foley Park, Glebe, Syndey. This is a small building donated by Grace Bros to the Glebe Council in 1934, where people gathered to listen to the "wireless" radio. Artist Nigel Helyer is working on a sonic installation and website, as part of an oral history project on the Wireless House Project.

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Friday, January 09, 2009

Internet car radio

Blaupunkt have demonstrated two internet car radios at the "Consumer Electronics Show" developed in conjunction Melbourne company MiRoamer. These have been described as the"World's first internet car radio, Aussie-style" (by Ty Pendlebury , 8 January 2009, Cnet Australia), but they require a bluetooth connection to a mobile phone to provide the Internet connection. The two radios are the Hamburg 600i (single-DIN) and New Jersey 600i (double-DIN). The smaller will cost about AU$600 in late 2009. They also have an AM/FM radio, CD and socket for USB flash memory.

Some of the radio broadcasting industry, particularly the ABC, see Digital Audio Broadcasting (DAB) as the future of radio. But Internet radio may well kill it off in Australia, before it starts.

The Blaupunkt units can't control an external smart device, such as an iPhone, iPpod or smart phone. The double DIN model will likely cost as much as some car dash computers. A better alternative might be a simpler device which just acts as a remote control for such a device and way to get the sound to the user, such as the Microsoft Ford Sync.

miRoamer are offering an Internet radio portal designed to make Internet radio easier to use. This has a free basic service and a premium paid service. It is not clear if the Blaupunkt radios are designed to work only with this Internet radio service, or can use others.

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