TiVo Releases Biggest Update in a Decade

In some­thing of a sur­prise to me, Cole­man-Dyer house­hold favorite TiVo released a updates pret­ty much every­thing today. Pri­mar­i­ly, they showed off their upcom­ing DVR hard­ware, called TiVo Pre­miere. I have to say, it looks very slick:
The new hard­ware is a small­er form fac­tor and has a very stream­lined look. What’s more, the new remote there may look just like the TiVo XL remote, but it has a slide-out key­board (sim­i­lar to many pop­u­lar mobile phones). This allows you to enter text in search fields, but also can be used to quick­ly fil­ter your “Now Play­ing” list. And speak­ing of the inter­face, it has been com­plete­ly over­hauled to match the look of the Flash-based TiVo Search beta that was includ­ed in the most recent ser­vice update. They also added the fea­ture that I most want­ed: playlist pro­files.

I’m real­ly excit­ed to see that Tivo, despite years of ques­tions regard­ing their future, is still work­ing to remain fresh and keep their top spot in the field of DVRs. (Both images from GDGT)

Portal Gets a Mysterious Update

Also in the sur­prise-to-me-release cat­e­go­ry, Valve released a rather strange update to their 2007 hit Por­tal today. Though not much in terms of game­play was added, the ever-present radios placed through­out the game now seem to have some sort of sig­nif­i­cance. Car­ry­ing the radios to var­i­ous points with­in the lev­el unlock a new game achieve­ment. What’s more, the radios begin to broad­cast var­i­ous sig­nals such as Morse code, data trans­mis­sions, etc. Some very crafty gamers have found that this is actu­al­ly a rab­bit hole lead­ing to a out-of-game alter­nate real­i­ty cam­paign. Por­tal remains one of the most amaz­ing games ever and if this is the how Valve choos­es to start a mar­ket­ing cam­paign for a sequel, then this bodes well for the future of the game. Here are a cou­ple of screen­shots I took while explor­ing some of the new game fea­tures:

Updat­ed: It looks like Por­tal 2 is offi­cial (this Decem­ber) and it is like­ly com­ing to the mac, too.