Wednesday, May 11, 2011

I Cut the Cord

I am a Cord Cutter. Apparently that is a name given to those that have decide to say goodbye to cable or satellite TV.

I start to realize that I was spending too much money on Satellite TV, while having to scroll through piles of crappy shows and bullshit movies. I had most of the channels such as HBO, Movie Central, Encore Avenue, etc. The problem was that the movies were stale, not much was new A lot of network TV is horrible. No offense to anyone, but Glee, seriously? "Hey look, Dancing with Nobodies is on!"

So I did a little research and found that I can watch movies, watch many of my favorite shows, enjoy excellent online music stations, and even check out some great new video over the Internet. More research prompted me to investigate the Boxee Box.  I went for it. I called up my satellite provider and cancelled. The next day I picked up a new Boxee Box. Here is an obligatory picture;

It is a cute little bugger. This thing is tiny. It's a bit wider than a slice of Texas Toast, and just about as tall as a jumbo coffee. Hookup and setup were a breeze. There isn't much to it. Connect the supplied HDMI cable to your TV, plug in your USB storage device ( a hard drive full of video in my case) and plug in the power cord. I powered it up and simply followed the setup.

I was very impressed. It looks great and is easy to use. The tiny fan inside is audible, but not when you are enjoying TV, so I can forgive that small distraction.

There must be a hangup right? Nothing is perfect. Boxee Box for Canadians is a little lacking. The content is not the same as the content enjoyed by U.S. citizens. Perhaps the big broadcasters and providers don't like America's friendly neighbour. In any case, I needed to make some changes.

After some online reading, I realized I could easily set up a VPN to work with Boxee. It's is a whopping $8 a month. Now I can get the additional programming. I could even try out Netflix US. Netflix Canada sucks in comparison.

Now I have pile of great shows to watch, excellent music to match my tastes (thanks Pandora), and easy access to my external hard drive. It couldn't get any better.

Or could it?

Yes, it gets better. I have easily set it all up so that I can now add files to my external drive over my network from my PC or laptop. I can even access my Boxee Box via its own webpage.

Is there a hitch? yes. My plans to watch less TV will be a challenge, but going from $88 a month to $15 sure makes me feel better about my latest decision.

I am alive....

I haven't updated this area in ages.  New things have been happening, but I guess I was too lazy to update a simple web area. I have a few new things to share. I have decided to take up guitar and bass. I have also decided to dump satellite TV. Oh ya, I am older. I made it 46 years.