Those of you that have been watching WildEarth on the Windows Media 9 (WM9) service at One Net Place in Los Angeles will have noticed an increased level of pixelation in the video. What has happened is that I have reduced the bit rate (the speed) of that stream from 300 kbps (kilobytes per second) to 150 kbps. The reason for this is that WE have increased the Flash stream to 500kbps at www.wildearth.tv, and there just isn't enough bandwidth at Djuma to be able to run a total of 800 kbps.
I appreciate that some of you prefer the WM9 stream for a variety of reasons, but I assure you that the Flash 500kbps stream is superior. In fact watching the game drive at full screen is now almost like 'proper' TV, which is why WE are doing this. Change is difficult and there are things that still need to be improved, but in the end this is going to result in a better experience for all.
WE have heard you and I have from today stopped 'distorting' the picture by squashing it. The presenters will have lost several pounds again!! I did this because for years I have wanted to broadcast in the 16:9 aspect ratio, but until WE upgrade the waterhole cameras to HD, which we will do, it's just not possible. Even though WE record and transmit 16:9 HD from the Jiga. What can I tell you I am impatient!
Also, we are aware that some of you in North America with slightly slower connections are having some difficulty getting the 500kbps Flash stream at www.wildearth.tv. This is a fixable problem and we are working on it. If you are having this difficulty you can help us by doing a trace route from your PC to the stream. Email me at email@example.com and I will explain how to do it.
Finally, I just want to let you all know that WE are aware of your frustrations with the question asking service that WE offer. Firstly I want to assure you all that there is no favoritism at all, and I do understand why you are frustrated. Quite simply our current system will never work, but the concept is a great one. I am working on a system that will allow all of you to see the questions as they are asked and most importantly put a monitor on the vehicle next to the radios that will have your questions scrolling on it, so the presenters can read them directly, and have a 'conversation' with you. There are a myriad of technical challenges to this and it is going to take some time and money, but it is the only way to make this service work to its potential. In the meantime I would ask for your patience and support. WE will also try harder, so keep your questions coming to firstname.lastname@example.org.
By the way you are the best audience in the world ... it's in your nature!!