Saturday, February 18, 2017

Site of The Day: 13.Org - Treasures of NYC

The New York City television station, THIRTEEN currently has 24 great programs ranging in length from around 28-minutes to 58-minutes.

As the series name suggests, each program examines an organisation or institution based in New York City, and of those I have watched to date about the Flatiron Building, St. Patrick's Cathedral, The Cooper Hewitt Museum and several more, I can attest they each offer great insight and information about the topic under examination.

I am sure that even resident New Yorkers will be rewarded with a new appreciation for many of the featured organisations when they watch the videos.

Unfortunately, not all of the films in the Treasures of New York collection seem to be viewable from Australia, which is where I live. When clicking links to some of the films I keep getting stopped by the message: We're sorry, but this video is not available in your region due to rights restrictions.

Visitors to Thirteen.Org from other parts of the world may have different results. Of course, if you live in the United States you should have no trouble viewing all the films on the site.

Here is a 57-minute video which serves as a great introduction to the Treasures of New York series. This examines the Landmarks Preservation Movement which is responsible for helping to save thousands of potentially endangered buildings across the five city boroughs. Without the Landmarks Commission, New York would not be the same wonderfully diverse and fascinating city it undoubtedly is today.

Note: For a time I was having trouble watching some online videos using Google Chrome. Happily it didn't take me long to fix the issue after I eventually asked 'Dr. Google' for the answer. This page, Fix Videos That Won’t Play in Chrome, provided the cure I was looking for. The problem is due to the fact that my Chrome browser settings had been set to HTTPS Everywhere. When I remove the 'S' (security) designation, videos played without a problem. Videos also played in a Google Chrome INCOGNITO window without issue. Given that the Safari browser on my system is not plagued with the same problem, I tend to use that as my default browser for watching online videos.

Note also that the HTTPS Everywhere setting even stops the embedded video on this page appearing on my iMac! Again, opening this page in a separate Incognito window solves the issue. To confuse matters even more, when I open this page on my PC laptop, my second generation iPad, and my Galaxy S7 smartphone it appears exactly as it should. Go figure!

UPDATE: Several hours after adding this blog post it occurred to me to check YouTube to see if the videos were available there, and lo and behold, most, though not all of them were. Sadly, the above video is not on the Thirteen.Org YouTube page. Still, if videos don't load on the organisation website, you can always try their YouTube page.

Sigh... After more than 25 years of using computers, I am amazed by how easy it is to still be confounded and frustrated by them.

Oh, and here is the link to the Thirteen.Org Treasures of New York section on YouTube. Enjoy...

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