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I bring my TV-B-Gone with me whenever I go out to eat, but it’s hard to subtly use it without the waitstaff and other customers giving me funny looks. I wanted to put it in something that would be appropriate for eating out (so no hats, sorry, Mitch) that would allow for stealth TV-B-Goning, so I used a thrifted hoodie and some conductive thread to make a zipper-activated switch for the embedded device. Works wonderfully! Check out the instructable for making your own TV-B-Gone Hoodie. Next up will be a formal version for fancier establishments.

From the pages of MAKE:

TV-B-Gone Hat from MAKE:13 p.169 – Preview in the Digital Edition.

More:

Becky Stern

Becky Stern

Becky Stern is director of wearable electronics at Adafruit Industries. Her personal site: sternlab.org


  • Jimmy Dean

    This is way more conspicuous than a keyfob, don’t you think?

    Perhaps you can try another location for the LEDs?

  • Spikenzie

    I really don’t get the TV-B-Gone hype, but that zipper switch is brilliant!

  • Paul

    The arrogance of people using TV-B-Gones is staggering.

    If you go to a restaurant (or even worse, sports bar) with televisions, what the hell gives you the right to turn them off? GO TO A RESTAURANT THAT DOES NOT HAVE TELEVISIONS.

  • samuel

    dear god that is brilliant i have nevr seen a better idea for a home brew switch ‘grats

  • ksmith

    Paul, how may times has a person used a tv-b-gone while you were watching tv in a public place?

    I would agree that anyone who does so should be called arrogant, among other things. But I don’t think that social disruption is the driving force behind the tv-b-gone mods. Rather I think it’s curiosity, and the “hey, it’d be novel to hack it in this way, can I do it?” approach.

    Just because someone owns a gun, doesn’t mean that they want to shoot people and cause social disruption. The vast majority just want to enjoy it in a respectable manner.

  • Paul

    ksmith, did you read the article?

    I bring my TV-B-Gone with me whenever I go out to eat, but it’s hard to subtly use it without the waitstaff and other customers giving me funny looks.

    “I bring my gun with me every time I go out to eat, but it’s hard to subtly shoot someone in the head without the waitstaff and other customers giving me funny looks.”

  • Colecoman1982

    And then there’s the example of Engadget.com (I think it was them) who went to a major tech convention (I believe it was Comdex) and use one to shut off displays in booths and in the middle of major product presentations (can we say desperate stunt for attention/hits?).

    Face it, the primary reason for this device to exist is to be an a$$hole (shut off your neighbor’s TV through his window, turn off the TVs at the local “red-neck” sports bar, turn off displays at convetions, etc.) It’s a real-world version of internet trolling and about as anti-social/disruptive behavior as you can get sort of outright breaking laws. In gaming it’d be called griefing.

    With the exception of the one or two people out there who may have, actually, made these things as a true proof-of-concept with no intent to use it, virtually all the people that get these are immature jack-a$$e$ who get their kicks by making other people misserable. It’s a popular topic with blogs like Engadget and Make, mostly, because it’s controverial and gets them hits.

  • Anonymous

    It was Gizmodo at CES.

  • ksmith

    Wow [removed]

  • Phillip Torrone

    ksmith, i’m editing your comment and removing the personal attack – please don’t resort to name calling, k?

  • cyenobite2

    “zipper switch is brilliant!”
    agree!

  • ionymous

    Maybe those televisions you encounter in public are meant for other customers.
    Disabling the equipment/services that a business is trying to use to attract/satisfy their customers seems unlawful to me.
    I bet a good lawyer could argue a restaurant or electronics store lost a huge amount of revenue from some using one of these tv b-gone devices. Concealing it makes you seem more guilty.
    I don’t like loud annoying TVs either. I just spend my money at bars/restaurants/stores that don’t annoy me.

  • Pope Ratzo

    Are people really comparing shutting off a TV in a restaurant with shooting people in the head?

    When I go out to have a drink or meal with friends or loved ones, having a television blaring is every bit as intrusive as having someone smoking a cigarette at the next table.

    TV-B-GONE is terrific! Good on you.

    If someone really goes out and then expects to watch TV, they really don’t deserve a lot of respect. If you want to watch Dancin’ with the Stars, do it at home.

  • Cyber Akuma

    “When I go out to have a drink or meal with friends or loved ones, having a television blaring is every bit as intrusive as having someone smoking a cigarette at the next table.”

    Simple, GO TO ANOTHER RESTAURANT!

    The majority of restaurants, even chain restaurants that are by no way fancy such as Omega or Olive Garden, usually don’t have a TV.

    Most places either have the TVS in the bar area, or are designed to be a “sports bar”, people expect a tv to be there.

    Its a public restaurant, not YOUR restaurant, and the others clearly want to watch the TV. especially if its a sports bar, turnign the TV off so you can enjoy yourself is just being a duche.

    “If someone really goes out and then expects to watch TV, they really don’t deserve a lot of respect. If you want to watch Dancin’ with the Stars, do it at home.”

    What arrogance. Whay pray tell do they not deserve to receieve respect? Because they don’t fit your narrow minded point of view of going to a restaurant? Because you went into a type of restaurant they would like but you don’t so you feel its your right to defy everybody else to turn it into your kind of restaurant instead of just going someplace else?

  • Joe

    wow CyberAssuma, could you be any more ignorant? Look if you’re so unconscious/ brainwashed/ delusional that you think people WANT to have a TV blaring out at them 24/7 then you might really want to check in with a mental health professional…the insanity and brainlessness of television is everywhere but it doesn’t mean we should passively submit to it…don’t be a ‘duche’ douche, and try something a little more mind expanding rather than the mind-contracting nature of watching television! (the nature of your comment reflects your level of intellect and awareness!)

  • AndyATiT

    What a great idea for a switch, it’s sad to say but I would be wary of being shot several times though by SO19 because someone mistook my hoodie for a suicide bomb hoodie…. is there a tv-b-on device too ? the fun you could have zipping up and down !

    • Becky Stern

      The Tv-B-Gone merely sends the “power” signal to TVs, so it turns them both on and off.

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