Julie’s Gear Diary – 2003-10-07

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It's really true what they say, you can't keep a good man down. Or in this case, you can't keep a good man and his application down! I'm happy to say that Pocket TV Browser for the Palm and Pocket PC is back! I was so bummed when Jeff Parsons (the developer of Pocket TV Browser) had to take his very popular TV listings program off the market. PTVBrowser uses a web scraper to collect TV listings data from the TV Guide.com website and display it on your Palm or PPC PDA. It was (is) my most used and most favorite application ever. The problem was that every so often TV Guide would decide to change the format of their listings, which would cause PTVB to stop working. Jeff would then be required to fix PTVB to reflect the changes and all would be fine until the next time. This continued to happen despite Jeff's attempts to contact TV Guide with requests to work with them on his program. Eventually, Jeff made PTVB available for free because he couldn't promise that he would be able to fix it every time TV Guide decided to make a change. Everything came to head a month or so ago when Jeff received a FedEx letter from TV Guide's lawyers demanding that he cease and desist distributing PTVB.

Life is good once again though, as this past weekend Jeff contacted me to let me know that PTVB lives again. Jeff's company now has a relationship with a new listing provider. PTVB remains free, while all that is required is a $10 per year subscription fee to the listing provider Evolve. I've given the new version of the application a try, and am happy to say that it is as great as ever! Another plus is the fact that you can view the listing data online through Evolve's website. Kudos go out to Jeff and Evolve for resurrecting my fave app!

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