After finishing season one of Leverage on Netflix, we’ve started watching season two on TNT’s website. Netflix’s streaming video has been great, and TNT’s has been decent enough aside from dropping out of full-screen for commercials…until yesterday.

Last night, while watching “The Order 23 Job” on our MacBook, we got to the final commercial break — and TNT popped up an error saying that the content required Windows to play. The episode played fine. Previous commercials played fine. But this one? The DRM wasn’t compatible with the player on the Mac.

Yeah. The DRM for the commercial wasn’t compatible.

It wouldn’t have been so bad if TNT approached it the way Hulu does when a commercial fails to play, which is to blank the screen for the duration of the ad (typically 30 seconds) and admonish you for not watching the commercials. Unfortunately, the episode didn’t pick up again.

As near as I can tell, the player was set up to continue the episode when the ad finished, and didn’t account for the possibility that the ad might not play. To make matters worse, the scene selection thumbnails don’t work right in Safari, so we couldn’t jump straight to the final act.

Because neither of us wanted to spend a lot of time troubleshooting, we just went into another room and brought up the Windows box to finish the episode. I suspect the scene selection would have worked in Firefox on the Mac, but haven’t tested it yet. I did go back later to see where I could report the problem to TNT, but the wording in their FAQ suggests to me that they’ll just ignore any reports of Mac problems.

I don’t mind watching reasonable ads to get a free service, but if the ad breaks, it shouldn’t take the actual service down with it. You don’t kick people out of a movie theater because the previews didn’t play, and you don’t send them home part way through an event because one of the sponsors’ banners fell down.

Forklift Driver Klaus (a.k.a. Staplerfahrer Klaus)- a parody of work safety films in which a forklift driver blunders through his first day on the job, maiming fellow employees left and right. German with English subtitles. (via TV Tropes: Scare Em Straight)

And, on a more serious note, the Internet Storm Center is reporting on people finding malware pre-installed on digital picture frames, memory cards, etc. Something to watch out for with portable devices that can connect to your computer.

Just a warning for any Fedora Linux users preparing to upgrade to Fedora 7: Grab the Live CD first and make sure that all your hardware works properly. If not, see if the fix is available before you actually upgrade.

I upgraded a system with a Permedia 2 video card, which uses the glint drivers. The installer couldn’t launch the GUI, but I’ve run into that fairly often, so I just used the text-based installer without thinking much of it. The upgrade process itself went fine, but on booting into the new system, it was unable to launch X. I kept getting the following error: Continue reading