America, sometimes criticized as a nation of couch potatoes, takes its recreation seriously. Since its debut in the first half of the 20th century, television has held sway over the hearts, minds, and imaginations of billions. The technological advances in recent years have certainly not neglected the TV, and digital television can be seen as the most significant advance sine the introduction of color television in the 1950s. DTV provides sharper pictures, CD-quality sound, and better color images. In order to facilitate nationwide use of this cutting-edge development, several developments have to take place including the production of compelling digital programming, creation of digital carrier systems and consumer adoption of the technology. To this end, the federal government, led by the Federal Communications Commission, has set 2006 as the date for broadcasters to cease analog broadcasts and convert to digital signals. While no Congressional legislation has yet to address DTV specifically, the issue is under constant monitoring, particularly given the stakes involved. Television is too key a component of contemporary American life to overlook.
This book provides an overview and analysis of the current state of digital television and its regulatory status. Understanding the topics presented here are important to anyone interested in technology and the advances about to sweep the entertainment industry.