Main June 27, 2017 Chris Williams No comments

Netflix USA: Why I’m Still Sold on Roku Even as Xbox 360 Promises


When the Roku direct to TV film option came out (using the US Netflix subscriber base and some of its DVDs), I immediately got one. I’d had other options before, including Comcast’s pay per view movie service and Netflix’s mail delivery of DVDs. This was so much better! I could simply watch movies whenever I wanted, with no risk of a defective DVD in my mailbox, one with scratches on it.
You can see the original article I wrote here, spelling out the reasons we bought the Roku and what options it offers. I’ll go over some of those in a moment.

Why I love the Roku and how it compares to other systems we’ve used

We do have Tivo as well and it is great, for what it does. I need to be able to record breaking news as well as new television shows and the Tivo does that as needed…..most of the time. However, it can be hit or miss and there is a certain error rate, making me record two or three of the same movies or shows so that I can be sure to have one that is actually recorded from the right channel. That isn’t an issue with the Roku.

Pay per view is certainly supposed to be convenient but when we used the Comcast system, all too often we’d get error messages and have to call the company. Sometimes the movie would show up on our television screen and sometimes it would not. Even if it did, we might miss part of it or have the weather or something else affect coverage.

How to know if the Roku is for you or not, especially as the Xbox 360 offers similar options

You can read plenty about the movies offered on the Roku by reading guides and reviews of the movie options on the Roku. I have gotten quite a bit of help from Timothy Sexton’s guide to Roku movies, as well as his opinion of them. Here is just one example, one that lists the Robert DeNiro movies available on the

If you scroll through his articles, you’ll see many which focus on various subjects and types of movies available for the Roku. Yes, the selection of current movies may seem limited primarily to classics or even noir type movies from various genres. However, as someone who likes to watch classic and cult favorites repeatedly, this isn’t an issue. Secondly, there are some newer movies in the mix. Also, I have some relatives who haven’t seen many of the 10,000 movies available from American Netflix for viewing on the Roku. So the initial price has been well worth it.

Another reason to love the Roku? Don’t mess with what works

Yes, there is a lot of attention about the Xbox 360. Depending on your taste, you may not be impressed with the movies offered yet (again, I’d urge you to read Mr. Sexton’s diverse articles about the Roku movies before you make that decision, yay or nay, about the movie selection). However, the picture quality is excellent and I tend to stick with what works. I know how Tivo functions (erratically). I know how Comcast Pay Per View functions. I don’t know how the Xbox 360 functions. I’m sticking with the Roku as the direct to tv movie delivery system for me. Oh, yes, I’m also familiar with Netflix and hopeful about the movies that will be available as time goes on. Besides, working through those 10,000 movies, given my schedule, isn’t exactly the easiest of tasks.

The Roku continues to be user friendly

It is nearly instant delivery. Find your movie (again, I suggest using Mr. Sexton’s articles for suggestions or inspiration), pick it out, watch it by using the Roku controller. It is that simple, pretty much. Set-up isn’t hard, although you do have to consider what you already have installed along with your basic television set. Is it perfect? No. Could it be better or offer a wider range of movies? Absolutely. But for the price, $99, and the low Netflix subscription fee, I don’t see a better game in town right now when it comes to this type of service. Great picture quality. Movies pretty much whenever we want to watch them.

If you want to know more, read my article or go to the Roku website and learn more…and don’t forget to bookmark Mr. Sexton’s guides to Roku movies while you are at it. The Roku website is here:

So is the Roku for you?

I stand by my earlier stance. It really depends on your viewing preferences and tastes. Those who love it…well, they really love it. I’m one of them. I confess that Mr. Sexton got his delivered and hooked up before I did so his enthusiasm for the product – and actual use – preceded mine. I’m still working on catching up on those guides of his, just like I”m working to catch up on all the movie selections available on the Roku. The Xbox 360? I’m not inclined to buy it just for the movie option…yet.

What is next for Roku and direct to tv movies?

Hopefully, Roku will offer more of the newest titles and do so quickly. Also, the industry seems to be changing so quickly that no one really knows what the next big thing could be. In the meantime, I’m hoping that $99 investment turns out to be one of the best moves I made recently. So far, I’m one happy customer.

Main June 27, 2017 Chris Williams No comments

The Pirate Bay Keeps Sailing: Facebook and VPN Access

The Pirate Bay is at it again. Two new features are currently popping up on its Web site as it awaits the results of its trial in Sweden. It looks like nothing lets the wind out of its sails.
The Pirate Bay on Facebook

The Pirate Bay has now put BitTorrents in Facebook. What a concept. If you google Pirate Bay, you find a Share on Facebook link. By clicking on this link, users can share torrent tracker links.

As of March 30th, Facebook says they are aware of this action and are looking into it. As of now, no action has been taken by them though. According to Peter Sunde, who helps run the The Pirate Bay, no complaints from either Facebook or entertainment industry trade groups have taken place yet.

The Pirate Bay does not host copyrighted materials. It hosts links to torrent files that are used to download larger files for peer-to-peer file sharing. A torrent doesn’t actually contain the copyright material anyway. It merely coordinates the download. Although users might think twice about posting copyrighted material on their profile page, it is an interesting twist to the continuing saga of free movie and music distribution.

According to Struan Robertson, a technology lawyer, Facebook can block the links or hold Pirate Bay accountable for copyright infringement charges they might incur because of the link. Mr. Robertson warns that any user who shares copyright links through Facebook risks legal threats from companies enforcing their copyrighted materials.

The Pirate Bay Offers VPN Access

As if this isn’t enough, The Pirate Bay just launched a Virtual Private Network called IPREDator. It’s a network for more privacy while browsing the Internet. The cost is around $6.95 a month and subscribers share files anonymously and their IP addresses are hidden. VPN technology Canada vpn canada ip is most commonly used among remote office workers so they can use their company networks securely.

As the saga of free file sharing continues, it becomes apparent that it will not be stopped. The Internet has challenged the way we do things since its inception. I remember when citizenship to an on-line country could be purchased. Imagine no taxes, no physical address and no police.

The Pirate Bay will know the results of the trial on April 19th. Until then, they apparently are going to continue their innovations. As they state on their website: “We control it. Not them.” The Pirate Bay is talking about their website but I’m thinking of free file sharing throughout the world.

Click here for a link to the only interview of the brains behind and co-founder of The Pirate Bay.