There is an excellent article this week in The Economist looking at the “digital home” and at what cable, telecom, internet, and hardware companies are doing to create the new entertainment nerve centers of the future. The article touches on what exists today (CDs, DVDs, etc), what is in production or preparation from various companies (MS MCE, IPTV, music downloads, etc), DRM, interoperability, and competing standards, among other topics. Although there is no mention of MythTV or Linux, it is a pretty solid analysis of the market as it is now and concludes that vendors are trying to hype a market into existence where there is no great consumer demand. A choice quote: “‘If consumers even know there’s a DRM, what it is, and how it works, we’ve already failed,’ says Peter Lee, an executive at Disney”. The article concludes: “As John Barrett, research director at Parks Associates, says, ‘it seems that we’ve concocted a new variant of the ‘paperless’ office.’ This, you recall, was the consensus a decade or so ago among technophiles (but almost nobody else), that computer technology would save our forests by freeing us from having to read and write on paper. Today’s variant, says Mr Barrett, is ‘no more tapes, CDs, DVDs, discs.’ In other words, expect them to be around for a very long time to come.”“

As reported on Slash Dot