Sunday 25 August 2013

GRACENOTE. The wonderful world of sync-viewing

Gracenote has come out with an entirely new way of keeping you from living your life in the moment: sync-viewing. Check out and see how it’s done. Gracenote will track what you’re watching on TV and offer you comments or insights on a second screen. Just like those annoying people who sit next to you at the theatre and talk through the whole movie. Thanks Gracenote, but I’ll just have the popcorn.

Okay, there may be times when you want distraction. I’m thinking of the saleswoman in a shop I pass every day – she sells ties. Hello? Are there any men left who wear ties? Not in my area. So the poor woman stands at the cash register all day, all by herself -- a prime candidate for Gracenote. She needs to sync-view a video that will bring excitement into her life: someone licking a stamp or pulling weed or typing a novel with one finger.

You know the iconic greeting card message: Wish you were here. Well, how about sync holidays? You sit on the couch watching the shopping channel, and on a second screen your best friend is soaking up the rays on a beach in Cuba. Exciting, huh? And speaking of exciting:

Have you signed up yet for Virgin Galactic’s suborbital space flight? There’s a lot of noise, vibration, and G-forces, Brian Binnie, the pilot of SS1 reports. Okay, here comes Gracenote, and while the skin of your cheeks is pulled to the back of your head and your eardrums reach the maximum endurance point, you can sync-view a silent movie. 

Then there is that bad habit of eating and watching TV, so instead of putting on weight, you could just have a second screen on which you watch yourself putting food into your mouth. Not as satisfying as the real thing? I bet you it would be for those people who ate cronuts at the CNE last week and were doing a lot of heaving into the toilet. With Gracenote, they could have just watched themselves eating bacteria on screen.

Also at the CNE, Toronto Mayor Ford was doing something legal for a change. He took on Hulk Hogan in an arm-wrestling match. I think it would be fun to sync-view him giving the finger to voters. Alternatively the two competitors could sync-view their respective scandals: Hulk’s sex tape in which he frolicks with the wife of a friend and Ford’s crack tape if it ever reappears. If not, I suggest substituting another stinker: the pile of goat manure which combusted spontaneously at a dairy in Vermont (Metro, 23 August).

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