The notion of a personal computer taking complete control of your hi-fi equipment is certainly not a new one. The first technology that could be likened to today’s Windows XP Media Center Edition 2005 appeared back in January 2002, when Microsoft launched Freestyle at the annual Consumer Electronics Show. With four years of innovative development behind it, Freestyle has now evolved into the versatile set of capabilities and services you get when you purchase a PC running Windows XP Media Center Edition 2005:
Analog and digital television recording and playback
Comprehensive Electronic Program Guide (EPG) services
Integrated FM tuner support
Integrated DVD player and recorder
Video playback with support for a wide range of file types
Digital photograph viewing and manipulation
Digital music playback and recording (ripping and burning)
Extensible application programming interface (API) for enhancements
The conundrum Microsoft faced in creating Windows XP Media Center Edition 2005 (XP MCE) is that it had to be really easy to use but also had to be able to provide integration across many different hardware and software systems, none of which were designed to integrate. For this reason, many of the functions and capabilities of XP MCE are hidden beneath the surface of what seems at first glance to be a simple interface.
This book exposes the most important, yet less often used, functions and capabilities of XP MCE, which make it the fantastic tool ...