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Entries for month: August 2007

Power Outage Cuts Service Statewide

August 20 2007 by Peter Morrill

On Sunday August 19, 2007, just before 6:00 p.m., a brief but powerful wind and rain storm raced through portions of the Treasure Valley, cutting power to about 1,800 Idaho Power customers, including Idaho Public Television's statewide network operations center.

As a result, IdahoPTV was unable to provide programming statewide from 5:58 p.m. Sunday evening to approximately 1:30 a.m. Monday morning, when statewide service was resumed.

I'd like to take this opportunity to thank our technical staff - including Ken Constant (Master Control operator), Mike Studor, Kevin Evans, and Kevin Rank - who worked throughout the night until 6:00 a.m. to restore all of our systems.

For those who missed it, Mystery "Miss Marple, Ordeal By Innocence" will air early Thursday morning, August 23, at 1:00/12:00 a.m. MT/PT. Remember to set your VCR or DVR Wednesday evening before you go to bed!

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IdahoPTV Channel Change in Bonners Ferry Area

August 16 2007 by Peter Morrill

Idaho Public Television is changing channels in the Bonners Ferry area, beginning Wednesday (August 15).

IdahoPTV engineers completed the installation of a new state-of-the-art translator on Black Mountain east of town Wednesday afternoon and set the new broadcast channel to 23. The IdahoPTV signal was off the air during the change-over.

The change to channel 23 from the previous channel 59 is to accommodate federal requirements for television stations to use channels 2 through 51, according to Rich Van Genderen, IdahoPTV director of technology.

"Right now the new translator is sending an analog signal, the familiar signal we have been watching since television's beginnings," says Van Genderen. "When we are told to no longer send an analog signal, which now is scheduled in 2009, we flip a switch and the new translator is digital-ready."

Viewers should notice improved picture quality and better sound immediately, he says.

The statewide public television system is in the process of bringing all its translator channels, which must be approved by the FCC, into a range below 51. The higher numbers are to be auctioned to other users by the federal government in anticipation of television switching to digital channels.

The work at the Bonners Ferry site is made possible through a 2006 U.S. Department of Commerce Public Telecommunications Facilities Program (PTFP) grant and matching funds from the State of Idaho. It is part of the IdahoPTV effort to upgrade the 37-translator system throughout the state to be ready for digital broadcasting statewide.

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