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Windows Media Center Edition 2005

Written on September 29, 2006 by William George

My Videos

A little less polished than the previous two features, My Videos is simply an enlarged view of the contents of the My Videos subfolder within My Documents. It will show thumbnails of videos, and any subfolders that you can navigate through.

You can also add other folders to the list, in case you have archived videos located in other places on your computer (or network). The most convenient use I have found for this myself is that I can have my second computer linked to the shared network folder where TV programs are recorded on my main computer. That way I can watch recorded TV in my bedroom - without having an additional tuner in that system.

Tip: If you do plan to stream video across a network, make sure that the network can handle the amount of data involved smoothly. Wired networking should be fine, but if you running a wireless network you may find that, unless you are using high-speed WiFi (like 802.11G) and getting a near-perfect signal strength, the video feed may stutter somewhat.

My Pictures

Very similar to the My Videos feature, this interface simply allows you to view the files and folders located in the My Pictures subfolder of My Documents. You can sort photos by either name or date, making it pretty easy to find what you are looking for.

There are some neat extras here as well- like the ability to play a slideshow of pictures. You can even have a slideshow going at the same time as music is playing, by starting playback via My Music beforehand. You can also create a CD or DVD containing some of your pictures directly from this interface, assuming that you have a CD or DVD burner installed in your computer.

Tip: Giving a slideshow of digital camera pictures on a computer or TV in this way is much easier than setting up a projector and slide viewer like you may have done in the past. You can control the slideshow via the remote, or just let it go automatically - and either narration or an appropriate musical soundtrack can make it even more enjoyable.

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