X-Message-Number: 20415
From: "John de Rivaz" <>
References: <>
Subject: Re: Video cassettes
Date: Fri, 8 Nov 2002 12:08:36 -0000

> From: "Ralph C. Merkle" <>
> While videotaping this year's Alcor conference was considered we decided
> against it largely because of prior experience with the Foresight
> conferences -- which had revealed some major drawbacks:
>      3) Few people actually buy the tapes
> http://sound.photosynthesis.com/Nanotechnology.html

The individual tapes were not unreasonably priced, but the eyes can glaze
over at the cost of buying the whole conference -- there were just so many
cassettes. I wonder how long each tape was. It may have been possible to get
more than one lecture per cassette, I don't know.

> From: 
> For those truly interested in cryonics it would appear that the the value
> something as little as a professional taping of a very important
> would be invaluable in "professionally" promoting the cause versus the
> unprofessional look of a video done by "uncle Fred" at the annual family
> reunion.

Maybe an answer to this and the comment that professional video makers tend
to be disruptive to those physically present is to record sound only and
include with audio cassettes or other media some prints of any diagrams or
slides used. Audio often has the advantage that people can listen to it
whilst doing something else. Most people have to do boreing repetitive tasks
from time to time, and listening to cryonics lectures may be more
constructive than listening to pop music!

As to the expense of a complete set of audio cassettes and associated sales
tax (or import duty), packing and postage, a solution exists. A CD can
contain ten hours of audio recorded with MP3 files. And before someone
chimes in with "not everyone has computers" I would mention that you can buy
a CD player that will also read MP3 files for very little more than an
ordinary personal CD player. ($30 in the USA?) A CD can be sent anywhere in
the world for a dollar or so by USPS air mail. (Although some idiots selling
computer software once tried to send CDs by Fed-Ex , UPS, or some such firm
whose charge was $65, and because they had no flexibility insisted on it to
customers who enquired. I wonder how many they sold outside the USA?)

Once a CD has been made, these can be copied to order on a PC, so if only a
few people order them there is no overhead of getting a minimum order of
hundreds filled by a professional company. The actual production cost of a
copy once the master CD had been made is of the order of a $ or two. The
illustrations to lectures can be included on the CD for those who do have
computers, and lets face it most will have them these days They could be
available as an extra for those who don't.

As to speakers who don't want their words available on recorded media, I
wonder why. Is it that their right to free speech is actually being
curtailed? Or is it that they don't have much faith in what they are saying?
Or are they hoping for more money?

Do they make every attendee at the lecture sign a note to say that they do
not have a perfect memory :-)


A general comment on the matter of respecting other peoples' money as it
applies to cryonics:

It seems, rightly or wrongly, that most people capable of earning serious
amounts of money don't have time to devote to evaluating and getting
interested in cryonics. So like it or not, the vast bulk of our followers
are not those earning an appreciable fraction of a million dollars a year,
before or after taxation. Assuming that they are already paying into life
insurance for the rest of their natural lives and they all have the usual
pressures that everyone faces with money, then paying off the mortgage or
buying Christmas presents for their families may well take a precedence
over, for example, a $400 set of video cassettes.

Sincerely, John de Rivaz:  http://John.deRivaz.com for websites including
Cryonics Europe, Longevity Report, The Venturists, Porthtowan, Alec Harley
Reeves - inventor, Arthur Bowker - potter, Holistics, de Rivaz genealogy,
Nomad .. and more

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