The Chicagoist will be launching later but in the meantime please enjoy our archives.

High-Def Home Skillet

By Rob Christopher in Arts & Entertainment on Jan 10, 2007 1:33AM

2007_1skillet.jpgIf you're chillin' at home and watching ABC7 (and you have decent reception), you're seeing clearer and more vibrant images. And if you have one of those new-fangled HD TV sets (33 million households now do), you're seeing ABC7's local newscasts in high-definition widescreen. Though they're the first Chicago channel to go high-def for local programming, all American networks are required by federal law to go completely HD by 2009. That's right: unless you buy a converter (or Congress changes the rules, which is highly unlikely) on February 19, 2009, your little Sony Trinitron will go dark.

2007 is predicted to be the year that sales of high-def TVs finally overtake those of old-fashioned ones. It's not only the cut-rate pricing at big-box stores that are driving those numbers. It's also sports fans. If all this has got you confused, you're in good company (because so are we). Luckily ABC7 has put together a handy primer, or you can check out the government's HD website (complete with cheesy, decidedly low-def graphics).

Now, if they'd just put something decent on television we'd be all set. Sadly, we're predicting that by the time that HD is ubiquitous, "Beauty and the Geek" will no longer be on the air.

Image courtesy of the Illinois State Museum.