Rich Warren: Welcome to era of affordability

'Tis the day after Christmas and all through the house the creatures are stirring with no rest for a mouse (or touchscreen).

Top of the morning, Dec. 20, 2013

Load the fireplace with logs, grab the remote and click your way to holiday happiness. Here's your weekend TV guide, courtesy staff writer Bob Asmussen:


"I Love Lucy Christmas Special," WCIA, 7 p.m. 

Rich Warren: No audio outputs on new TV means a likely return

LG put one over on Mr. Technology. I saw a lonely LG 22-inch TV sitting on a Target shelf for an appealingly low price, not much more than the similar no-name TV on sale next to it.

Producer visiting for showing of trains documentary

URBANA — Robert Van Camp, who produces public television programs about historic and scenic tourist railroads, will be at WILL-TV from 7 to 10 p.m. Tuesday for the broadcast of "Trains Around North America."

Van Camp will be in the studio during breaks in the program to talk about his love of railroads and how he became interested in helping preserve their history.

WILL to air piece on Prairie Fruits

URBANA — WILL-TV will broadcast at 7 p.m. Monday the WILL-made documentary, "Course Work: Dinner Season at Prairie Fruits Farm," which focuses on the activities on the farm that lead to the night of one of its farm-to-table dinners.

From June to October, WILL-TV followed the arc of a farm-to-table meal that began and ended at the farm in rural Champaign.

Rich Warren: Some thoughts on preserving old music digitally

Many of us find treasured recordings scattered around the house that no longer play on contemporary music players. That's why a 1921 Victrola remains in my living room.

This reader asks a popular question: "We have four partially filled tapes I would like to have on one CD. Do you know of anyone who does this reasonably and what the cost might be?"

Community Cinema program to feature 'The State of Arizona'

URBANA — Illinois Public Media's December Community Cinema program will feature a screening and discussion on Tuesday of "The State of Arizona," a documentary about the divisive battle over illegal immigration in Arizona.

The film tracks multiple perspectives — those of activists, politicians, Latino immigrants, law enforcement, ranchers and others.

Studio Visit: Steve Drake

Studio Visit is a Q&A with an artist. Here, Melissa Merli chats with Steve Drake of Urbana, creative specialist at the Beckman Institute in Urbana.

Q: Congratulations on your three consecutive Mid-America Emmy awards. I noticed you've won other awards as well. Which are the most meaningful to you?

Volunteers to offer video portrait of Monticello

URBANA — Illinois Public Media, aka WILL, will broadcast this week on WILL-TV a video portrait of Monticello, the Piatt County seat.

The program will air at 7 p.m. Thursday and feature video taken by volunteer storytellers and videographers, all Monticello residents. The videos were edited by Illinois Public Media.

Rich Warren: Don't necessarily dive into Black Thursday insanity

Welcome to Black Thursday, once known as Thanksgiving. Since you're perusing an electronics/technology column instead of basting the turkey, you might be heading out to buy the latest toy/gizmo/must-have piece of electronics.