Showing posts from August, 2009

Derby City Digest: U-verse making its debut

AT&T has brought a whole new U-verse to Louisville.

Yes, folks, as of today, U-verse -- the fiber-optic cable/internet/phone service -- is now available in parts of the Derby City (as well as Mobile, Ala. and Spartanburg, S.C.).

Taking on Insight, the 800-pound gorilla in the room, will be tough, of course. But AT&T is bringing the A-game. For the first six months, according to Multichannel News, a subscriber can get all three services -- 150 channels on TV, up to 1.5Mbps internet, and phone -- for $90 a month.

After the intro period, the price goes up to $109.

If you decide to go with U-verse, let us know how you like it.

Goodbye, Reading Rainbow

While it ended production three years ago due to funding constraints, the long-running Reading Rainbow series (hosted by LeVar Burton) has continued as a staple of kids' programming on PBS.

But as of Friday, PBS' contract to air the show has ended and now, after 26 years, the rainbow has faded away.

Rainbow premiered in July 1983, and I remember it very well. Books were read to children by noted celebrities like Bill Cosby, and it was enjoyable. And, in recent years, my own kids gained a new appreciation for reading from LeVar and Reading Rainbow.

Like Mister Rogers' Neighborhood, this is another fine PBS program that will be missed for a long time to come.

The WIRE - Double Shot Edition (covering August 16-29)

Since I missed out on last week's Wire because of our westward swing, I am doing a double shot today. There's a lot to cover, so without further interruption, here we go:

Derby City Digest: WBKI sale now officialLouisville's CW affiliate's sale to Fusion Communications subsidiary OKd by FCCDXing: St. Louis stations pop in for a visit KTVI, KMOV and KSDK all come in here at HQ. MONDAY, AUGUST 17
COMING NEXT WEEK: Something for the RVersSee below.Are you ready for some Colts football?A preview of the Colts/Eagles preseason game
500 posts later ...Marking JDTVB's 500th postIN SPORTS: How can we miss you if you won't go away?Brett Favre unretires. Again.
R.I.P.: Bob Novak, 1931-2009Former host of Crossfire and columnist dies at 78THE URBAN CANYON: Source of most DTV woes?The FCC thinks so
Dish adds still more locals ... but not Bowling GreenSunday Night Football extended on NBCPeacock network has NFL's b…

Two days to go ... get your votes in!

With just two days to go, this month's polls have already counted a good many of you here in the Evansville market, and I appreciate all the responses so far.

But if you haven't yet voted, your voice can still be heard until Monday night at midnight.

So ... what are you waiting for? VOTE!

Greetings from Diamond Lake

WEST LOUISVILLE, Ky. -- JDTVB Mobile Command is on location at Diamond Lake Resort this weekend, enjoying the beautiful weather, the lake view, and friendly folks.

And an unexpected TV station.

Yes, folks, much to my surprise, WAZE-DT [19.1] is on the air and sending pictures and video to my two TVs. It isn't a great picture -- OK, it's crappy -- but the signal is pretty steady. Steadily weak. It's watchable, as long as you like watching whatever it is they broadcast.

So there you go. You good folks down here in southwestern Daviess County near the McLean County line, with a good antenna, should be able to get WAZE.

If you really want to.

In other news, TeacherJake reports on "TV without pictures" this weekend, letting us know that Western Kentucky University's WKU Public Radio is dropping classical music during the daytime hours in favor of all news, all day long.

The new schedule goes into effect on Monday on all of the following WKU Public Radio stations:

BREAKING: Evansville Whirlpool plant closing in June 2010

Whirlpool Corp. has decided to move production of refrigerators and ice makers from its plant in Evansville, Ind. to a plant in Mexico.

All three of the Evansville stations have been covering the news very well, and at a time like this, I am not about to ask who got it first, as long as they're all getting it right.

Some 1,400 people (including a few folks whom I know personally) will be out of work when the plant closes in June of next year. That's one of the largest job losses for Evansville since Chrysler Corporation closed the old Plymouth assembly plant in August 1959 ... exactly 50 years ago this month.

Evansville has had plant closings before. The city will eventually recover. But we must all keep those affected by this event in our thoughts.

The Music City Report, Part Deux: WTVF-LD now on air

It isn't too often I get two Nashville tidbits in one day, but NashDigie reports that WTVF-LD -- the low-power digital translator intended to fill in gaps in NewsChannel 5's coverage area -- is now on the air.

Nash says that one person he's heard from now has two channel 5s. This isn't surprising, because while WTVF-LD is on channel 50, it will map to channel 5 through the "magic" of PSIP.

If anything else comes along, we'll be sure to get it to you.

The Derby City Digest: Pitino chastises Louisville stations

Gee, Rick, we couldn't tell you were ticked off ...

Embattled University of Louisville head basketball coach Rick Pitino held a presser on Wednesday, mainly for the purpose of chastising the local media, who broke into coverage of the death of Sen. Ted Kennedy so they could broadcast the latest Karen Sypher revelations.

My favorite line: "If you’re watching the news and this comes on, turn the channel."

Right, coach. That's gonna happen. Not.

By the way, if you have no idea what this mess is all about, I'm VERY happy for you, and please don't ask me to explain it all, because there's no way I could ever do it. In fact, it's probably best that you don't know, because it's basically about sex, lies and ... well ... I sure as heck hope there's no videotape.

PHOTO CREDIT: Associated Press, via

The Music City Report: WNAB back to full power

NashDigie reports that the engineer at WNAB [58.1, CW] e-mailed him yesterday with the news that the station is back up to full power.

He added that the difference is noticeable.

The return to full power comes almost exactly a month after a power surge caused by a fallen tree damaged their transmitter and other equipment.

Courier & Press readers vote Hart top TV personality

It was announced tonight that WEHT NEWS 25 chief meteorologist Wayne Hart has been chosen by the readers of the Evansville Courier & Press as this year's Best TV Personality.

Hart has been with the station since 1993.

Congratulations, Wayne!

EDITOR'S NOTE: This post will be updated.


CBS News to air arrival of Sen. Kennedy's body at JFK Library

Tim Black of WEVV [44.1 CBS/44.2 MyTV] tweeted earlier that the arrival of Sen. Ted Kennedy's casket, which will lie in repose at the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library & Museum, will be carried live by CBS beginning at 2:30 PM CDT.

ABC News is carrying the motorcade online. It is expected to take about three hours for the journey, which is to pass sites along the way that were special to the late Senator.

I was not able to determine NBC's plans.

PHOTO CREDIT: Emmanuel Dunand/AFP/Getty Images

NBC football coverage gets some tweaks ...

... but will it be worth watching?

With John Madden now retired and Cris Collinsworth taking his place, I'm not sure anything NBC does will keep Sunday Night Football from becoming a crashing bore, but they're trying.

According to Variety, Bob Costas will join Al Michaels and Collinsworth in the booth at each stadium for the pregame show. Well, I guess it's better than having him in some studio in Manhattan ... particularly if the game is in ... I don't know ... say, Indianapolis, for example.

We'll see how this turns out.

More DXing

It's been another great DXing morning, but this time I decided to do it from JDTVB Mobile Command.

And I got a few surprises:
WSIL [3.1] out of Harrisburg, Ill., is the Paducah/Harrisburg/Cape Girardeau ABC affiliate. It comes in occasionally, and it's always a treat to see Jim Rasor's station. Rasor, the chief meteorologist at WSIL, grew up in Spencer County, Ind., as I did, and his aunt is a longtime friend of my family.WPSD [6.1] is the NBC affiliate for the P/H/CG market. They have a pretty neat weather channel, and it can be said with certainty that WPSD is the only station in the world that transmits its signal from a place called Monkey's Eyebrow. It's a high spot in rural northern Ballard County, Ky., that overlooks the Ohio River.
WDRB [41.1] is Louisville's Fox affiliate.WMYO [58.1] is Louisville's MyNetworkTV affiliate. Technically licensed to Salem, Ind., the station transmits from the Tower Farm near Floyds Knobs, Ind., along with other stati…

Installing a DTV converter in your RV

EDITOR'S NOTE: This post will be updated with photos. I'd originally intended to do this as a video, but I think photos will do; besides, my camera operator won't be available tomorrow.

If you're like me, when you have made the decision to get an RV for the first time, most of us will choose a used unit. And, when that unit comes with a television (as ours did), it's probably not going to be set up for DTV.

But it's not the end of the world.

You can add DTV to your rig in a fairly short time, just as I did. Here are the steps:
Pick up a DTV converter box. I'm using a Magnavox, because it came with the rig ... it just wasn't installed.
Locate the television, electrical outlets, antenna jack and signal amplifier, if equipped. In our 2000 Jayco, the TV is in the optional over-cab entertainment center, while the jack and amp combination are located on the interior wall in the cabinet above the swivel chair next to the entry door. Yours may vary from this …

R.I.P.: Dominick Dunne, 1925-2009

One of my favorite authors and producers, Dominick Dunne, has died.

Dunne, who was 83, had been battling bladder cancer for the past year.

Best known in recent years as the host of truTV's Dominick Dunne's Power, Privilege and Justice, Dunne gained his greatest fame, interestingly, following the 1982 murder of his daughter, Dominique.

In what must surely have been a very difficult move, Dunne attended the trial of her killer from start to finish and then chronicled it for Vanity Fair. The account was so stirring that he was asked to continue writing for the magazine, which he did until his death.

He would end up writing six novels and two nonfiction works; the status of the book Too Much Money, on which he was working at the time of his death, is unknown.

So what do you think?

Have you noticed WEHT's new First Warning Doppler Weather Center layout?

NEWS 25 has abandoned the old tube computer and TV monitors that once sat in the background, replacing them all with modern flat-panel displays.

I like it, especially given the somewhat cramped quarters the station's meteorologists have to work with.

The team would like to know what you think, so you can tweet them:
Wayne Hart (NEWS25whart)David Heckard (NEWS25dheckard)Scott Dimmich (NEWS25sdimmich)And I'd like to know what you think as well, so be sure to let me know.

What are they?

EDITOR'S NOTE: Special thanks goes to NashDigie for catching this while I was away.
"I just looked at the FCC website and saw that if everything goes as plans, there will be 4 new low powered digital channels in Evansville (14, 25, 26, and 44). Now, they are all by the same company. So, I don't know if they will use all 4 channels or apply and see which channels get granted by the FCC."According to the FCC's website, Alma Corporation has applied for licenses for stations on all four channels Nash mentioned, with transmitters for each to be located in Henderson County, Ky., in the same general area (as best I can tell) as the WFIE and WEVV sticks.

But who is Alma?

And why four channels?

I can't find anything substantial, other than Alma might be an import-export company, a Finnish media company ... well, nothing really fits.

And as for why so many channels, well, that's a real quandary. I can't figure that out at all, but Nash's theory makes sense…

Introducing "JDTVB Mobile Command"

The RV pictured at left (click it to see it full-size) is the reason we went to Oklahoma this past weekend.

It is a 2000 Jayco Designer 2730W. Mounted on a Ford E-450 chassis, it is powered by a 6.8 liter V-10 engine, driving through an automatic transmission. It sleeps all six of us, with Mrs. JDTVB and I sharing a queen bed in the rear bedroom.

The rig was obtained from Mrs. JDTVB's grandmother, who has retired from camping.

It is not mine, mind you. I'm merely being allowed by the Mrs. to use it. And I'm grateful.

So what does this have to do with DTV, you ask?

A lot.

This particular RV has provisions for two televisions. One, located in the front of the rig, is a 19" Orion set. The other, which I installed after we arrived home last night, is my trusty 13" Philco.

Neither is digital-ready.

So in a video that I hope to put together tomorrow, I'll show you how I "went digital" in the RV.

Catching up on what I missed

EDITOR'S NOTE: Because of our delay in returning to civilization, there will be a special, two-week edition of The Wire this weekend. I apologize for any inconvenience the delay may have caused.

There are many things to catch up on today that I missed over the weekend and on Monday and Tuesday, so this is my attempt to put all of it in one handy little spot.

Here we go:
DOLAN IS NEW FOX 7 CO-ANCHOR: This is probably the biggest story in the Evansville market so far this week. When Jackie Monroe recently jumped ship for WFIE, that left an opening at the anchor desk alongside longtime anchor Randy Moore. Now WTVW has promoted Julie Dolan to the position. Dolan has been with the station since October 2007. (Courier & Press)
FROM THE MUSIC CITY: The owner of Nashville's WZTV and WUXP may not have to file bankruptcy. Sinclair Broadcast Group has apparently reached an agreement with creditors to keep the company out of Chapter 11. Sinclair also manages WNAB. (Baltimore Su…

R.I.P.: Senator Edward M. Kennedy, 1932-2009

The liberal lion of the U.S. Senate roars no more.

Senator Edward Moore "Ted" Kennedy, last surviving son of the Kennedy family - and brother to the late President John F. Kennedy and Senator Robert F. Kennedy - has died as a result of the brain cancer which was diagnosed last year.

Kennedy was 77.

CBS broke into programming after midnight, but as yet I've not seen anything from ABC or NBC.

PHOTO CREDIT: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

Back home again

We have FINALLY returned to the friendly confines of JDTVB HQ, so things will finally start to return to "normal," whatever THAT is.

Back to the old grind ... tomorrow here at JDTVB!

A slight delay ...

Well, we'd intended to have made Poplar Bluff before dark tonight, but that was not to be.

As I type this, I'm sitting in the parking lot of the McDonald's in Rogersville, Mo., about 8 miles east of Springfield. Wife and children are at the campground preparing for bed, and I will be back there doing likewise ASAP.

One of the vehicles in our little parade had a brake problem (it happens!) approximately 15 miles from our starting point, so we spent 3+ hours in the shop with that. But, after $365.10 worth of repairs (ouch), we got on the road.

And it'll be a long drive tomorrow, too.

But worth it.

So we'll see you then.


Actually, it's far better than that, and you'll understand why later this week when I get back to Kentucky and back in action.

We had an amazingly smooth trip from St. Louis to northeastern Oklahoma today, and enjoyed some great Route 66 scenery along the way.

We'll start on a two-day trip back to Owensboro tomorrow, so until tomorrow night (when I'll post from Poplar Bluff, Missouri ... hopefully with a better internet connection!), God bless, and we'll catch you on the flip side!


Hi, folks! I'm here in the home of the St. Louis Cardinals (who are out of town this weekend, unfortunately) and checking in with what I've picked up in the news today. There's not much, so this will be brief:
Fox was the big winner in the ratings last night, with a 2.4 rating and 8 share, thanks to the Colts/Eagles preseason game (which, by the way, my Colts won, 23-15). I understand that it was the highest-rated preseason NFL game in more than two years.And that's it for tonight. We're still unwinding after the drive across Illinois on I-64, so I'm calling it an early night.

Have a great weekend!

How could I forget? Octomom "special" not as big a hit as Fox might have hoped

Maybe it was America's Got Talent's fault.

Or maybe it's because she's just freakin' weird.

Whatever the reason, Fox's two-hour Octomom "special" that aired this week was only able to pull in an average of a 1.6 rating in the all-important 18-49 age group, according to Media Life Magazine. That was well behind NBC for the time period, which won with a 2.0.

Octomom and Fox tied with ABC for ... third place. Second was claimed by the all-Spanish-language Univision network, which I still think is just amazing.

WEHT signal troubles extend to all areas

We have now entered the final 10 days of voting in this month's poll.

This month, I've asked for you readers in the Evansville market to tell me if you can pick up WEHT [ABC 25.1/RTV 25.2] over the air.

The numbers have been about what I figured, and it's not a good sign for WEHT.

A strong majority of the 55 voters thus far are completely unable to view the station. And that, folks, is not only not good, it should be unacceptable.

Here are the results:
29 voters cannot get WEHT at all. (52.7%)13 voters get the station with no problems. (23.6%)9 voters get the station most of the time. (16.4%)4 voters get the station occasionally. (7.3%)Breaking it down by area (35 votes have been cast in this part of the poll), it appears that the largest number of viewers with problems reside in the two most heavily-populated cities in the viewing area - Evansville and Owensboro:
9 voters live in either Posey, Vanderburgh or Warrick county in Indiana. (25.7%)7 voters live in either Davies…

An explanation and apology

When I posted the Dish Network story earlier this week (they added some more HD local markets), I used a Dish logo in that post that I found by using Google.

In the process of adding pictures and/or other graphics to JDTVB, I have two options: The first is to upload them directly from the JDTVB Master Control computer, and the second is to enter a picture's address from the web.

Normally, I use the first option, because I make most of the graphics you see here using Corel Print Office, an ancient software package I've been using for nearly 10 years now.

However, my mistaken impression was that both methods ended with the same result: Images uploaded and saved in my own folder. What I didn't realize is that the second method only links to the image on the site where I found it, thereby using bandwidth on the source site.

Mind you, I have a strong feeling that I'm not the only Blogger user that this has happened to, but I am going to do something about it.

In accordance wi…

UPDATED: Extreme Makeover Home Edition coming to Owensboro!

UPDATE, 1:15 PM: For more information on the Owensboro build, you'll want to check out this site, and keep checking as things progress.

The Extreme Makeover Home Edition gang is coming back to the Evansville area, and this time, they'll be building a home in my town, Owensboro, Kentucky!

The official announcement will be made at 1 PM CT today, although I first got word of it early this morning.

Owensboro homebuilder Thompson Homes will partner with the ABC show to build one local family a new home.

And just who is that family?

We don't yet know, but that will be announced on September 5.

As I mentioned, Ty Pennington and his team are coming back to the area; their first home in this neck of the woods was built in 2006 for the Farina family of St. Meinrad, Ind., about an hour from Owensboro.

Extreme Makeover Home Edition is seen on the following ABC stations: WKRN [2.1], WHAS [11.1], WBKO [13.1] and WEHT [25.1].

A PROGRAM NOTE: JDTVB will be on the road again this weekend

It's becoming traditional lately for me to take a few days off every few weeks just to get away for a while.

On Friday afternoon, the JDTVB crew (all right ... myself, my wife and our kids) will be hitting the road once again, this time for a whirlwind trip to St. Louis for a family wedding, and then we'll head for Oklahoma to bring back a surprise.

A select few people already know what I'm up to, but for the rest of you, I'll give you a hint: The Video Update is about to make a triumphant return, and I think you'll be pleased and excited with just how I plan to do that.

I know I am.

GETTING YOU CLOSER: The signal's sucked since Saturday

As you know, this past Saturday, WEHT [ABC 25.1/RTV 25.2] was off the air for most of the daytime hours while crews worked on their tower, where a new antenna is being installed to improve their signal's strength and reach. Or so they hope, anyway.

However, since coming back on the air, only one television in my house is capable of receiving the station with more than a weak signal.

On most of our sets - including the flat-panel in the living room - it's all but unwatchable. Even on the best one, the signal strength is noticeably worse than usual.

What are your observations? Let me know.

THE RACE TO REPLACE: WHAS issues first poll in 2010 Senate race

EDITOR'S NOTE: While this is not a political blog, Kentucky's Senate election next year should prove to be an interesting match-up, regardless of who the final candidates are. And it will, of course, play out over the airwaves from Evansville to Bowling Green, to Louisville and beyond.

With Kentucky's junior Senator (and Hall of Fame pitcher) Jim Bunning retiring after his current term, attention now shifts to who will take his place in Washington.

I call it ... THE RACE TO REPLACE.

Louisville ABC affiliate WHAS and SurveyUSA have done the honors of issuing the first poll in the 2010 race, and there are some interesting highlights:
Lieutenant Governor Dan Mongiardo leads all of the Democratic field, holding an eight-point margin (39-31%) over his nearest competitor, Attorney General Jack Conway.On the Republican side of the coin, Secretary of State Trey Grayson leads Bowling Green opthalmologist Rand Paul (the son of Texas Congressman and 2008 Presidential contender Ron Paul…

Dish adds still more locals ... but not Bowling Green

Dish Network has added more local channels.

The company announced today that it's rolled out locals in the following markets:
Lima, OhioAlexandria, LouisianaThey've also upgraded the following areas to HD service:
Columbus-Tupelo, MississippiSpringfield, MissouriSouth Bend-Elkhart, IndianaSorry, Bowling Green readers. No locals for you ... yet.

IMAGE DELETED, with apologies to

Sunday Night Football extended on NBC

NBC got the nod from the NFL today to keep Sunday Night Football on the Peacock Network for another two years.

The extension means SNF will be on WFIE [14.1], WNKY [40.1], WAVE [3.1] and WSMV [4.1] through the 2013 season.

In addition, the NFL Opening Kickoff game will also be broadcast by NBC until the end of the newly-extended contract.

By the way, we're just 15 days from kickoff.

R.I.P.: Don Hewitt, 1922-2009

And today we mourn the loss of another broadcasting giant.

Don Hewitt, legendary CBS News executive producer, has died at 86 of pancreatic cancer.

Hewitt, truly one of the pioneers of television news, will be remembered as an innovator.

He produced and directed the televised Presidential debate between John F. Kennedy and Richard M. Nixon in 1960.

Nobody had ever tried cue cards for news readers. Hewitt did. Nowadays, of course, teleprompters are used, but it's the same concept.

Nobody had ever tried a "television news magazine" before. Indeed, some thought the idea foolish. But, more than 40 years later, Hewitt's baby, 60 Minutes, is still in the game ... along with many competitors.

They don't make 'em like Don Hewitt any longer. And that's a damned shame.


Jake Looks Through The History Books is a look back at TV history in the Evansville area. Information for this feature was gathered from the files of the late Mr. Charles Browning, well-known historian and funeral director, who, over a period of several decades, collected many clippings, photos and articles from The Evansville Press, Evansville's now-defunct evening newspaper. I hope you will enjoy them.


WFIE was first to provide interpretation for the hearing impaired

One of the many great but largely unsung leaps forward in television over the past half-century was the development of closed captioning for the hearing impaired, which was introduced and demonstrated in Knoxville, Tennessee at the First National Conference on Television for the Hearing Impaired in December 1971.

But before CC became widely available, one Evansville station - WFIE - experimented with sign language during its noon news report beginning on May 1, 1972,…

500 posts later ...

When I started JDTVB last year, I would have been happy to have a few readers check in from time to time, and for it to just be a hobby.

Well, today marks JDTVB's 500th post, so it's a little more than a hobby, you might say.

But, thanks to you, my readers, it's become the best part of my day. And for that, I thank you.

Stay tuned!

IN SPORTS: How can we miss you if you won't go away?

America's crybaby is back.

Just when you thought only one NFL team could be completely, utterly stupid this year (yeah, I'm talking about the Philadelphia Eagles there), Brett FarveFahrve Favre pulls another un-retirement out of his hat.

No, I'm not kidding.

And this time, he's found his way to Minnesota, where football's Methuselah will now ruin any chance the Vikes have of being decent this season.

One can only wonder now if this is the last stop on the Brett Favre Retirement-Go-'Round.

Somehow, sadly, I fear it ain't.


R.I.P.: Bob Novak, 1931-2009

We've lost another giant.

Robert David Sanders Novak, the longtime co-host of CNN's Crossfire, died today at his home after a yearlong battle with brain cancer.

He was 78.

I'm something of a political junkie, and while I didn't agree with much of anything Bob Novak had to say, he was entertaining to watch and to read.

And, by most accounts, despite his gruff exterior and demeanor, he was just a damned nice guy.

Rest in peace, Bob.

PHOTO CREDIT: Andrew Eccles/

THE URBAN CANYON: Source of most DTV woes?

The urban canyon.

Wikipedia defines it as:

"(A)n artifact of an urban environment similar to a natural canyon. It is caused by streets cutting through dense blocks of structures, especially skyscrapers, which causes a canyon effect."

And it is this effect, according to the FCC, that is causing so much trouble with VHF DTV reception in our major cities.

To that end, the Commission has been working with stations in the major cities - Chicago, New York, Philadelphia and Nashville, just to name a few - perhaps as many as two to three dozen stations, according to this article.

It's what they refer to as a "mop-up" operation.

Well, from what I've been seeing and hearing - and not just from folks here (WEHT viewers), but around the country - they'll be mopping up for some time, and not just in the cities.

Interesting article on This TV

The format and content of This TV have been intriguing many OTA viewers across the country since the "diginet" went live last November.

This, a joint venture between MGM and Weigel Broadcasting, is seen on WFIE [14.3], WAVE [3.2] and WTVF [5.3], and broadcasts such classic shows as Mister Ed and The Patty Duke Show and movies from the MGM library.

MGM's John Bryan, one of the head honchos behind This, sat down with TVNewsCheck to explain what This is all about.

It's a good read.

Coming next week: Something for the RVers

Camping season, except for those who consider themselves "full-timers," is slowly coming to a close.

Before you know it, the weather's going to start getting cooler. But, starting next week, I'll share with you my experiences in setting up digital TV in an RV.

I'll show you some TV tips, tricks and hints for your RV, and it'll be a great time to figure out how you'll watch your favorite sporting events and other great shows in the lap of luxury ... even while you're "roughing it."

Most, if not all, new RVs are already set up for DTV (in fact, new ones typically come standard these days with at least one flat panel TV), but if you're getting into a used rig, there's a pretty good chance that you'll have to do a little work.

But don't worry. It's not difficult and shouldn't give you too many headaches.

Stay tuned!

Are you ready for some Colts football?

The Philadelphia Eagles are coming to Indianapolis to take on my Colts in preseason action this Thursday evening, and it should be an interesting matchup for all the obvious reasons.

The Colts, under the leadership of new head coach Jim Caldwell, are coming off of a 13-3 loss to the Minnesota Vikings this past week. Of course, poor preseason performance isn't at all unusual to us true-Blue fans, not by a long shot ... but we can always hope this game turns out to be better than the norm.

Fox (WTVW 7.1, WBKO 13.2, WDRB 41.1 & WZTV 17.1) will carry the game beginning at 8 PM ET/7 PM CT.

Oh, yeah ... the Titans will be in action this week as well. They're heading down to Dallas on Friday night to meet the Cowboys. Fox will carry that game as well.


Derby City Digest: WBKI sale now official

It's official.

Louisville's CW affiliate, WBKI [34/28], now has a new owner.

Louisville TV Group, LLC, which was formed by Iowa-based Fusion Communications for the purpose of buying the station, won approval from the FCC on Thursday.

The sale was announced in May.

DXing: St. Louis stations pop in for a visit

It's an early morning here at JDTVB HQ, but I was able to pull in a few St. Louis stations and wanted to share:
KTVI [2.1 Fox] is an occasional visitor and usually comes through pretty well.
KMOV [4.1 CBS, 4.2 broadcasting KNLC] doesn't drop in too often, and doesn't hang around long when it does. This morning is no exception.KSDK [5.1 NBC, 5.2 Local AccuWeather Channel] comes in even less often than KMOV, but it's weak but watchable this morning.I apologize for not grabbing pictures, but I didn't feel like getting up to get the camera. I'm hoping to have my own USB tuner set up the next time I get them.

THE WIRE for the week ending August 15, 2009

As usual, it's been a busy week here at the JDTVB Ranch, so let's give you the weekly rundown of what's new, what's news, and my take on the latest around the area.

In other news this week, The Wire gets a refreshed look. Let me know what you think.

Here we go:

TV on your computer: Even for us netbook folks, it's not that difficultReviewing the AVerMedia A868 Volar USB tuner
Maybe it wasn't such a good idea after allPhilbin's return to Millionaire just missed being a complete bombWhy am I not surprised? Fox signs Octomom to "documentary" contractA new look for Dual Doppler Turned out to be just temporaryWFIE 14.2 getting a new name The revamped channel will be called 14Xtra
WEHT video server crashes; quick thinking averts disaster All newscasts went on as scheduled with no real noticeable differencesFOLLOWING UP: 14Xtra to debut in late September WFIE plans to introduce its "new" 14.2 subchannel after…

A day off ...

I've been enjoying a day filled with what my wife's stepfather refers to as "perfecting the fine art of doing nothing."

Usually I only do that when we camp, but I decided today would be a good time to "work" on it as well.

The Wire will run tomorrow as usual, but for today, I'm takin' it easy.

Have a great evening!

WAZE misses a deadline (are we shocked?)

Mainly because I'm such a geek about this stuff, every week or so I try to check out the latest FCC filings from the various stations I cover.

Unfortunately, I've been a little lax over the past few weeks (OK, for about a month, to be honest), and I missed out on something.

WAZE didn't file a DTV Quarterly Activity Report in July as required by the FCC regulations.

Can you say, "Oops?"

Of course, since from all indications what is left of WAZE (basically three low-power analog translators with endlessly-repeating programming) is going down the tubes, I'm not terribly surprised.

But I do wonder if anyone at the FCC has even noticed this.

Does anyone know if there's a penalty for missing this sort of thing?

Oh, and by the way: The station's extension on its construction permit expired in November 2008. So if they're actually going to build a full-power digital operation (which, at this point, I highly doubt), I'd say they'd have to reapply. Agai…

FLASHBACK #1: Evansville's RTV (then RTN) debut and WNIN's addition of 9-3

Beginning today and continuing each Friday from August through October, FLASHBACK will look back at some of the stories JDTVB has covered since its inception in August 2008. This is our first installment.

August 25 will mark RTV's first anniversary in the Evansville market on WEHT 25.2.

If you've been with us from the earliest days of JDTVB, you may remember my excitement at being able to watch the classic programming on what was then known as RTN TV 25.

Well, it's a year later, and I'm STILL enjoying it! The schedule hasn't changed much, aside from dropping Magnum, P.I. in favor of the 9 PM newscast and Seinfeld. And that's good, because I like things pretty much as they are.

However, and this is not a knock against WEHT, but RTV: Could you please throw a few more episodes of each show into the mix? Seems like the same episodes repeat every few days. I'm not a fan of that.


Also, a year ago this week, WNIN went from two subchannels to three with th…

Working on a couple of older TVs

I love old TVs.

The only television that we have in our home that could be considered "modern" is the new Dynex we bought earlier this year.

And, while it's nice - very nice - there's still nothing like the big ol' boxes I grew up with ... and the small ones, too.

No, I don't have a TV as old as the picture at left (which is similar in overall style to the 1961 Zenith black-and-white set my grandfather gave me years ago) but lately, two sets in the house have been giving me fits.

The first, an RCA 27" that my wife and I bought shortly after we were married, developed an issue with the picture being too bright, and to top it off, it was more than a little blurry. Fortunately, even though it was made long after most sets came without such things, RCA saw fit to leave controls for focus and range of brightness (more so than you get in an on-screen menu), and I was able to adjust it back to where it needed to be.

Good thing, too: I needed that set today.

My two …

POLL UPDATE: We now have a majority, plus a reminder

Unfortunately for WEHT [25.1 ABC/25.2 RTV], the majority of respondents in this month's poll cannot pick up the station over the air.

With 43 votes cast, here's how the first question shakes out:
22 viewers (51%) cannot receive WEHT at all.Only 10 viewers (23%) can get WEHT with no problems.Seven viewers (16%) are able to get it most of the time.Four viewers (9%) said they can pick it up occasionally.Moving ahead to where the viewers who can't get WEHT without difficulty - or can't get it at all - live, every area but one is now represented. With 27 votes now in, here are those results:
Eight viewers (29%) live in Posey, Vanderburgh or Warrick county (Indiana)
Six viewers (22%) live in Daviess, Hancock or McLean county (Kentucky)Four viewers (14%) live in Ohio or Muhlenberg county (Kentucky)Three viewers (11%) live in Daviess, Dubois, Gibson, Knox, Martin or Pike county (Indiana)
Two viewers (7%) live in Edwards, Gallatin, Wabash or White county (Illinois)Two viewers (7%) …