“Hey, you mind turning that thing off?” Simple enough question, but I got tired of people looking at me like I’m from Mars. When a TV is on in the room, I can’t think. I just stare at the thing and drool.
So I invented TV-B-Gone, a key chain that stealthily turns off just about any television. When the TVs turn off, people turn on, engage in conversation, read, eat, and perform all sorts of human activities. Peace happens.
I recently teamed up with prolific kit maker Limor Fried to create a $20 kit version of the original TV-B-Gone key chain. This version works up to 40 yards away, and it’s totally hackable; the entire project is open source and documented at http://ladyada.net/make/tvbgone. Here’s how I built one into a baseball cap that lets me look at almost any TV, touch the top, and watch with glee as it shuts off.