Hack A Remote, Auto-Mute Annoying TV

Hack A Remote, Auto-Mute Annoying TV

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Tired of listening to people talk about The Jersey Shore? Good news: There's now a TV remote that'll help you avoid hearing about stuff you'd rather avoid.

These days, it's pretty much impossible to watch television and not be inundated with "news" about petty celebrity drama, immature political bantering, and or how videogames are pushing evil environmental agendas. That said, it's tough to avoid these topics if you still want to stay informed about what's happening, so what's the discriminating media consumer to do? Well, if you're Matt Richardson, you build a TV remote so it'll mute out the audio that you don't want to listen to.

For Richardson, who works from home and spends a lot of time with the TV on so he can stay informed of the goings-on out in the world, there were a number of people/topics that he had no interest in hearing about.

"A while ago it was Charlie Sheen. And then it was Sarah Palin. And then it was Donald Trump," he said. "And after a while I realized there's sort of always someone who I don't really want to hear about."

As a result, the video producer for Make Magazine hacked a TV remote that would automatically mute television when certain celebrity names were mentioned. The way it works is that the hacked remote reads the close-captioning transcripts as they're aired, and will automatically mute the TV for thirty seconds when specified words are picked up.

Of course, the device isn't perfect, since closed captioning doesn't always scroll fast enough to keep up with the action on screen, but when it first worked, Richardson "was in silent bliss for that 30 seconds I didn't have to hear about Kim Kardashian."

Since Richardson constructed this remote with Arduino - an inexpensive piece of computer hardware that can pretty much be programmed to do anything its user wants - he's planning to unveil the device's blueprints at the upcoming Maker Faire in New York.

Someday soon, my friends, I envision a future full of muted "real" housewives and talking heads on Fox News, and the silence will sound glorious.

Source: CNN

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Oh my God. That is absolutely brilliant.

Now if you'd just make a version that sent the results of what's muted to the Nielsen ratings system, and someone would be a millionaire inside of a week.

TV channels in my country are a nightmare. Too many commercials, too many disgusting murders on the news, too much football and politics. However it's the local "VIP"'s that really make me puke. So the solution was simple, just an ordinary remote would do. Program your TV like this:

Ch1: Discovery Channel
Ch2: National Geographic
Ch3: Viasat Explorer
Ch4: Discovery Science
Ch5: Discovery World
Ch6: Viasat History (my favorite)
Ch7: Euronews
Ch8: BBC World News
Ch9: VH1 Classic

And there you go... TV bliss.

I can see this being used as a different kind of V-Chip. Kids show talking about tolerance of homosexuals? Blocked.

At first I thought "this is cool", then I realised that this would make its way into the hands of strongly and extremely conservative housewives who get into fits when anything they don't agree with is said. Finally I realised if such technology prompted them to stop trying to censor everything because they could do it for themselves it could only be a good thing.

Will kind of suck if youre watching you show and there is a joke about one of the muted things. Then you'll miss 30seconds of it just because of a name!

You know there is already a mute button on virtually every TV remote, right ? You can just push it when in need. You don't need to make the process automatic.

Or you could stop watching TV, that works too.

*in the voice of James May* That's fantastic! It really is because I always had difficulty in doing this * Presses mute button himself until annoyance is gone then unmutes....*

Too bad this would never work for me. Closed captions on my television programs are never able to keep up...if I'm lucky there is only a 3 second delay...

The only time I have seen captions work is on DVD's...

RagnaThePig:
You know there is already a mute button on virtually every TV remote, right ? You can just push it when in need. You don't need to make the process automatic.

Or you could stop watching TV, that works too.

Somethingfake:
*in the voice of James May* That's fantastic! It really is because I always had difficulty in doing this * Presses mute button himself until annoyance is gone then unmutes....*

I think its more geared towards the sort of people who just have the tv going in the background while they go do something else.

I am pretty sure ThinkGeek been selling the equivalent for a long time.

http://www.thinkgeek.com/gadgets/electronic/755e/

But it is a universal on/off button instead of mute.

Nevermind reading fail on my part, through it was going for a universal mute controller to play prank with, not something that automute when unwanted word come up. Teach me to fully read I guess. =p

"Someday soon, my friends, I envision a future full of muted "real" housewives and talking heads on Fox News, and the silence will sound glorious."

Version 2.0 will play your favorite MP3 tunes instead of muting it! :)

Oh, I've had a better system for years:

I just don't watch television unless it's specific programming.

 

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