By Ken Sander
Years ago, when I was the road manager for Kiss, I met inventor and visionary Ken Schaffer. At the time he had just perfected his invention, the Schaffer/Vega wireless microphone and guitar pickups, and was introducing the system to Kiss.
He came upon this idea while hanging out with the Rolling Stones, who were trying out a wireless system on tour and having a problem with radio-frequency interference from other sources, like taxi dispatchers.
Schaffer felt he could do better – and he did. The Stones and Kiss bought those early Schaffer/Vega systems for $4,400 each, and the rest is history. Years passed and I hadn’t thought about Ken till I ran into him in Manhattan. He told me about another invention of 20 years ago, a satellite TV system that let American agencies and scholars eavesdrop on internal Soviet TV.
Then he told me about his newest invention, TV2me. “You can watch your local television from anywhere in the world,” he said. “You can be in Bombay and watch the New York Rangers on the MSG Network — live! Change stations on your cable box or satellite receiver as if you were at home!
A touring British rock star in America can catch every game his football team in England plays.” The system consists of special hardware on the “home” end (where you subscribeto the local service you want to watch) and a PC running custom software on the “away” end. A broadband connection is required at both ends. All communications between both ends take place over the Internet.
Efﬁcient compression allows the transmission of uninterrupted fullscreen, full-motion video unless excessive Internet trafﬁc makes the data rate drop too low. It also allows you to use a Wi-Fi-connected laptop on the receiving end.
The TV2me signal can’t be distributed to other Internet users because it’s encrypted and point-to-point, not point-to-multipoint. In legal terms, it’s the equivalent of time-shifting, but Schaffer calls it space-shifting and considers it similar to sending a signal to your bedroom — except your bedroom can be anywhere in the world.
TV2me isn’t a commercial product that’s being mass produced — yet. Sales have been limited to a few systems Schaffer has sold to friends and acquaintances for $6,500 each. He says that legal questions prevent him from saying who has bought them, but judging from the pictures on his wall, his friends are rock & rollers and movie stars like Sting, Rod Stewart, Dennis Hopper, and Mick.
Original Article here