How to: Connect Basic Cable to a Projector

I found it quite difficult to find information on how to convert basic cable (plain old cable) into composite.  This is for the folks who have cable, but don’t want to pay for extended services and cable boxes.  There are two verbiages that you will find on your web searches:

1)  Just use an old VCR!
2)  Just use an old computer!

End of thread…  End of post… That is where the story ends and it leaves a lot to be desired.  I have problems with both of these solutions.

1)  The VCR is archaic
2)  I don’t want to leave a computer running in a room that will be used sparingly
3)  I don’t want to wait for a computer to boot up

This can be negated if you have a cable box that already does that.  But there are still people out there without cable boxes.  Or don’t want a cable box in every room or on every device; I’m sure the cable companies want you to.  I can’t seem to justify the extra $30 + fees for the box to move away from basic cable.  Renting a cable box seems like a dirty tactic to me; in the long run they have to make a killing.

I have NetFlix so if I want to watch a movie I can just get it off of there.  Also, there is NetFlix streaming which is awesome.  I do not want to give the cable companies more money – it’s already highway robbery.

The problem with this is that projectors do not have a TV tuner.  It doesn’t know what to do with the coax connection.  Projectors cannot tune (most of them that are out there anyway).  But I believe there is a happy medium… a product by Ambery.com -> Super Video to WXGA Converter.  This device works much like a cable box expect that you can buy it and use it how you like.

basement projector system 001.JPG

It takes a coax connection (Clear QAM), it won’t decrypt any of the pay channels like a real cable box, and converts it to composite, VGA, or S-Video.  Composite will most likely be your best choice for a projector.  I believe they also have one with component connections.  If you are looking for HDMI I’m not sure what will be needed – I’m guessing an upconverter of some sort.

Clear QAM is important.  If the device is not Clear QAM then it will not be able to tune to the cable frequencies.  If you have been looking at the Analog-to-Digital most of the ones that I have found do not have clear QAM meaning they will not work with cable; you will need an antenna to retrieve the signals.

Continue reading


FLVPlayer Plug-in Fix for FCKEditor 2.6.3

I absolutely love the plug-in FLVPlayer for FCKEditor.  Inserting FLV into page or posts with the standard FCKEditor just doesn’t work.  This nice little plug-in is a champ.  Unfortunately, it has compatiblity issues with the new FCKEditor 2.6.3, so here is how to make this little plug-in work on FCKEditor 2.6.3

The problem I ran into was going to browse for media it would display a Page Not Found.  I’m guessing the method it was previously calling got depreciated.

Here’s where the error occurs:


function BrowseServer()
oEditor.FCKConfig.MediaBrowserWindowHeight ) ;

Replace that with the following:


function BrowseServer()
oEditor.FCKConfig.FlashBrowserWindowHeight ) ;

Voila!  This cleared everything up for me and I was off and running… 🙂


I see this update has already been add to the comments of the project on sourceforge, but it has not made it into the source code.  I wonder if the developer has abandoned it.


Another change that isn’t a bug that I made was automatically setting the width/height of the videos instead of having to enter that with every FLV file. Continue reading


Learning is Lifelong

After many years in school and working lowly, but rewarding, jobs in IT, I truly feel learning is one of the best attributes that I possess.  It is an attribute that everyone should strive for and keep close to them no matter what.

As I have stated many times before… I am an avid listener of podcasts and video podcasts.  I love them because they help me stay up-to-date in this frequently changing world of IT.  I would have to say my newest vidcast that I have been enjoying lately has been HAK5.  They are just a bunch of real down to earth people talking about technology!  They are a bit goofy but that’s okay with me.  I believe they were recently added to revision3, and I’m quite glad they were.

I really enjoyed the piece by Chris Gerling on reverse engineering on .NET applications (and more).  This is a very handy skill to have especially since I work with .NET.  As I watched the podcast I didn’t think much about it.  I found it to be very cool and engrossing; tres geek.  I like how they broke the segment down onto multiple episodes (inside of being deluged).


Come a few weeks later (now), a couple of the network guys came to my cube and asked me if I could help them with an application a previous developer wrote.  I politely said “Sure! Not a problem”, which they responded with “Great one catch though, all we have is the EXEcutable and we need it ASAP”.  I think that was actually two catches, but anyhow.

I said calm and coolly, “all we need to do is decompile the application get the source code and we’ll be ready to go”.  I suspect it was not the answer they were expecting.  I was calm and cool because I just watched the great hak5 episodes that involved reverse engineering!  Hot dog.  I earned major cred points for my attitude and how quickly I was able to reproduce the code for the problem.

After inspecting the code we found the problem to be a configuration code; not a development bug.  This was such a critical step the problem solving process.  This also proves that learning is a lifelong process that needs to continue beyond school and become apart of your life.