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Television became available in crude experimental forms in the late 1920s. After World War II, an improved form became popular in the United States and Britain, and television sets became commonplace in homes, businesses, and institutions. During the 1950s, television was the primary medium for influencing public opinion. In the mid-1960s, color broadcasting was introduced in the US and most other developed countries. The availability of storage media such as VHS tape (1976), DVDs (1997), and high-definition Blu-ray Discs (2006) enabled viewers to watch recorded material such as movies. At the end of the first decade of the 2000s, digital television transmissions greatly increased in popularity. Another development was the move from standard-definition television (SDTV) (576i, with 576 interlaced lines of resolution and 480i) to high-definition television (HDTV), which provides a resolution that is substantially higher. HDTV may be transmitted in various formats: 1080p, 1080i and 720p. Since 2010, with the invention of smart television, Internet television has increased the availability of television programs and movies via the Internet through services such as Netflix, iPlayer, Hulu, Roku and Chromecast.
Joking Apart is a BBC televisionsitcom written by Steven Moffat about the rise and fall of a relationship. It juxtaposes a couple, Mark (Robert Bathurst) and Becky (Fiona Gillies), who meet and fall in love before getting separated and finally divorced. The twelve episodes, broadcast between 1993 and 1995, were directed by Bob Spiers and produced by Andre Ptaszynski for independent production company Pola Jones. The show is semi-autobiographical; it was inspired by the then-recent separation of Moffat and his first wife. Some of the episodes in the first series followed a non-linear parallel structure, contrasting the rise of the relationship with the fall. Other episodes were ensemblefarces, predominantly including the couple's friends Robert (Paul Raffield) and Tracy (Tracie Bennett). Paul-Mark Elliott also appeared as Trevor, Becky's lover. Scheduling problems meant that the show attracted low viewing figures. However, it scored highly on the Appreciation Index and accrued a loyal fanbase. One fan acquired the home video rights from the BBC and released both series on his own DVD label.
Digital television (DTV) is a telecommunication system for broadcasting and receiving moving pictures and sound by means of digital signals, in contrast to analog signals used by analog (traditional) TV. DTV uses digital modulation data, which is digitally compressed and requires decoding by a specially designed television set, or a standard receiver with a set-top box, or a PC fitted with a television card.