In just a couple of weeks time, it will have been a year since my wife and I last received any kind of TV broadcast into our home. We don’t even own a TV since we moved to Canada.
That’s not to say we don’t watch TV shows, news and movies, it’s just that we’ve been using different technologies to do it. In this first post I will explore why we did it, how we made the transition away from broadcast TV, and what technologies we found to be useful. In part two I’ll look back at our experiences and assess the pros and cons of not having a TV, and discuss where this might lead, for us and for society as a whole. If you’d prefer a shorter version of this post, you can head on over here.
Watching TV at a time that you choose
So, why did we make the switch?Read More
It’s almost a year since we received any kind of TV broadcast into our home. That’s not to say we don’t watch TV shows, it’s just that we’ve been using different technologies to do it. Here’s a quick summary of the why, how and what. You can read a more detailed version of this post over here.
Back before we left the UK, Mrs Alex and I (ok she did most of the work) digitized all our CDs and DVDs not to mention paperwork, recipes and all sorts of other documents to reduce the amount we had to take with us to Canada. Given we’ve also been living here in Canada without a TV for the last six months, we have accumulated plenty more downloaded movies & TV shows. We brought about 8 hard drives with us to Canada and our FreeNAS install media, and after 2 case upgrades, 2 additional green 1 Terabyte hard drives, 2 new 4 port PCI SATA cards and a beefier PSU, not to mention much consolidation of data from smaller, older IDE drives, I am pleased to announce our behemoth of a fileserver is alive.. Just short of 6 Terabytes of storage for our viewing and data storage pleasure! Hurrah! Now to get my Popcorn Hour media player which Alex bought me for my birthday working.. and then it’s HD projector time (which is handy as we have just painted the walls in the lounge of our new apartment white which is just the right colour for projecting onto)…Read More
Maybe space really is the final frontier!
It’s a liberating experience to sort all your worldly possessions out ready to emigrate. I can now say that I’ve looked at every single thing I’ve accumulated over my life (and believe me that’s a lot!) and decided whether to bin it, box it up to store, or take it with me to Canada (in the suitcase or by shipping it). A lot of it has been about trying to downsize, trying to get rid of things, sell them or give them away. Strangely, the value of our possessions has changed for us now – it’s much more about size, than cost. If something is big or bulky, it’s far more likely we’ll get rid of it – because storage space is limited and the amount we can take is limited. So anything that’s small can be kept more easily. And if there’s any way to make things smaller, we’ll jump at the chance.
So what’s the smallest thing of all? Data. I can fit 8 Gig of data on a USB key on my keyring… and I can buy one terabyte of storage, taking up less space than a paperback book, for under £100.
Naturally, this is something we have taken advantage of.Read More