For this week’s Engadget Interview, veteran journalist J.D. Lasica spoke with Orb Networks CEO Jim Behrens about the growing importance of personal media, catching television on the road on nearly any device, and our networked, always-on, access-your-stuff-from-anywhere future.
Tell us about the background of Orb Networks. How did Orb get started?
We actually got started as a company called Bravo Brava! in 2000, primarily centered around technology-based education products. We began using interactive television as a solution, and we took a different approach than others were taking. We wanted to allow people to use any device that connects with the Internet to be the interactive portion of the experience. The content creators could continue to give you a unidirectional signal, but anything they wanted to add that was interactive you could do on your laptop or PDA or cellphone with a browser. We built the first generation of that technology and it worked great, but we saw a much, much larger opportunity than just doing interactive education.