Freshly Squeezed Reviews: Take Me to the Pilot of Your TV

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by Frank Petrie

I used to say that ‘if I’m not creating, I’m not breathing.’ Over the years, however, my time spent creating content has shifted to time consuming content. Between cable, streaming and the odd BluRay or DVD disc, it sometimes becomes hard to keep track of which of my favorite program’s episodes I have or haven’t watched and from which season.

Plus there are so many new programs being introduced constantly, it’s extremely time consuming to keep up with what’s out there. Some days you find yourself spending more time trying to stumble across something fresh than actually watching TV itself.

Now, let’s all say it together – “There’s an app for that.” It’s called TV Pilot <http://www.llsoft.ca/products/tvpilot.html>.

TV Pilot serves several purposes. There are apps to catalog your books, your, music, your books and so on. At its base level, TV Pilot catalogs your TV viewing, It allows you to keep track of what you have watched and what you would like to watch. It’ll even recommend similar programming.

You can “Discover” new series, create a list of your “Favorites” or perform searches via series titles or actors. Read a summary of a series and each of its episodes, by season number and episode number.

You can set your layout in either grid or list mode. Across the top of the pane is your toolbar: Discover, Favorites, Summary, Actors, Episodes and Seasons. The Preferences button is merely a toggle switch as whether or not to display backdrops or summary view.

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I found my experience with this app to be mixed. I was quite happy to find that I could look up both American and British TV series. And it is interesting some of the series that you’ll find using the Discover button.

The Summary I found to be the most useful button. It’ll tell you if a series has ended or what day and time you can watch it. (Unfortunately, you’ll have to find the network, cable channel or pay service yourself.) The summary will tell you what the series plot line is and be given information on runtime, network, genre and such.

It has a listing of the series actors, usually accompanied with photos. You can click on an actor’s photo (which is accompanied with their character’s name) and you will be presented with other series that they have performed in. Nice.

You also learn if there are any future episodes scheduled. As an example, when you bring up The X-Files, it informs you of the several new episodes which were recently announced to be aired in 2016.

I found it amusing that I was able to look up TV series that ran in the 1950s!

But there are cons. There were TV series that ran for nearly a decade or longer that don’t appear at all when typed in the search field (i.e., Law & Order: SVU). Also, when I brought up Law & Order: Criminal Intent, it didn’t list Vincent D’Onofrio as one of its cast. Odd, as he was the lead for about 85% of the series run and was included in the series banner.

I also found support minimal at best but this app has barely a learning curve. You can be up and running within several minutes following the button explanations on their site.

All in all, even with some cons and occasional flaky behavior (the list in the sidebar would randomly repeat series listings a multitude of times), if you can locate the series that you’re interested in, this app could serve you well.

There’s a free trial version available <http://www.llsoft.ca/products/tvpilot.html>. You can purchase the app on their site or at the App Store for USD$4/00. Requires OS X 7 or later and a 64-bit processor.

©2015 Frank Petrie/ympnow.com

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