Some bonus channels

| Comments (4) | Misc
The TV in the apartment I was staying at in Vancouver featured some unusual extra channels:
  • Surveillance cameras covering the parking garage and the street in front of the apartment.
  • An apparently permanent head-on shot of a wood-burning fireplace.
  • A (live) screenshot of an Agilent spectrum analyzer attached to something or other.

The first two are a little weird—though I imagine a video fireplace might be of some value to someone—but I have to admit I don't have a good explanation for the spectrum analyzer thing.


Debugging help for the cable technician? Personal NSA surveillance crew bungling some hookups?

I assume that that fireplace channel is the same one we get here in Minnesota - some of my friends are obsessed with it. Apparently you're not a true fan until you've seen the hand that adds logs to the fire.

Not quite the same thing, but my last apartment building had a video feed of the front door. You could turn the TV to a specific channel and see who was down there.

The spec-an image is for the building cable head feed. It is a quick way for a service tech to see if the premises has a distribution problem or the customer has a line/noise problem.

It is quite common in large apartments or communities. (I've lived in places in Vancouver that had a channel like that too).

I'm not 100% certain of this, but I think that my theory is likely close to the truth - if nothing else it is for cable company technicians to assist with diagnostics.

I think this is credible given that Cisco has a link explaining how to use a spec-an to debug DOCSIS environments here.

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