This is the website of Abulsme Noibatno Itramne (also known as Sam Minter). Comments here or emails to me at abulsme@abulsme.com are encouraged... or follow me on Twitter as @abulsme.

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February 2006
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Deprivation Leads to Depravation

In just a few minutes I’ll be leaving work and heading home. I have one more work related thing to finish (after I make this post of course) and then back… well, not home. To the corporate housing I’ve been in for the last 45 days. My check out is later today. I need to be out and have my keys returned and such by 19:00 UTC. 18 hours from now. Which means tonight I have to put all my stuff in my car except what I will need first thing in the morning. Then tomorrow I get up early, pack up the remaining stuff and go check out before coming to work.

Then in the afternoon I’ll leave work early and go actually sign the lease and move into the apartment which will be home for the next six months.

This new place will be completely empty. I will have a couple suitcases with some clothes in them and a computer. After my next triup to Florida I will bring back an air matress, and perhaps I’ll get a cheap desk and chair for the computer, but that will be it. I have no plans to get anything much more than that until everybody moves in June and some of my actual furniture comes.

Furniture be damned, what is the most notible missing item? That’s right… no TV. I ended up getting a 2 BR instead of a 1 BR since the last 3 months of the 6 month lease there will be 3 of us. As part of a compromise to balance off the additional cost, I will not be getting DirecTV, Cable, or even a cheap TV with rabbit ears. I will be going 3 months with no TV.

Here is what I figure… I don’t need it. I get news online most of the time. Look at all the “Sites I Check Daily” listed on the left of my home page. I can even get good streaming radio news if I don’t want to read it. If I don’t have a TV, I will most likely read more and spend more time catching up on things (email top ten anyone?) and learning new and productive things I can do with my computer. Well, that’s the theory anyway.

But then there is also reality. It’s not like I’ll need to go without any TV shows I really want to watch. Stupid behind the times notions from the MPAA and RIAA aside, I don’t need no durn TV. In places where there is a convieniant way that does things “by the book” I will use them. Netflix for movies (or old seasons of TV shows) to watch on the DVD player on my iMac is wonderful. iTunes Music Store to get the handful of shows worth paying for that they actually have for $2 each… fine. (Although the resolution sucks…) But for everything else I really think is worth watching… well, be there a “by the book” way or not… there be ways.

The TV industry as we know it is dead. They just don’t know it yet. They know they are in danger and are fighting like hell to buy off all the needed law makers to enforce old broken business models that have been obsoleted by technology through bad laws and intimidating lawsuits and by mandating that technology makers intentionally break their hardware to restrict what you can and can’t do with content… They may succeed short term… but long term… 10 or 15 years from now the way entertainment is delivered will be vastly different from how it is done today. Not saying it will all be free or that copyright will go away. But the “big media” of today will have to adapt drastically and accept the new methods of distribution… or they will be replaced by new content sources that do. They are beginning to understand now with music as the iTunes Music store gets the billionth download yesterday… tv and movies are next… magazines and newspapers have already started to make the shift. And eventually books will go too. It is just a matter of time until someone finally makes an ebook reader that doesn’t suck.

Oh well. In any case, even with such things, I’ll be watching a lot less TV than I have in many many years. And that probably is only a good thing. The challenge of course will be to do useful things with that time rather than just spend it all rocking back and forth on my air mattress in a fetal position while hitting refresh on stupid websites waiting for them to post new stuff. :-)

4 comments to Deprivation Leads to Depravation

  • Reb

    I’d be interested in seeing some e-mail stats from the last year or two — when was the last time you sent one out?

  • matt

    if you’re starving for TV entertainment, you could always just call me and i can hold the phone up to the TV for you. or you could simply just call me to tell me how good your job is so i can feel bad about how bad my job is.

  • Abulsme

    Well, the last results published were the September 2004 results. I sent the results out via email to the winners at 2004 Dec 18 08:21:07 UTC and posted it on this website a few days later at 2004 Dec 21 03:32:07 UTC.

    At this point I have logged all the messages that were forwarded to me from the lost time period, then I logged all the items I actually still had, and I have started to go through the email server log files Chris sent me and am cross referencing them with the items from the other two methods. I’ve now processed those for October 1st and 2nd. Every few weeks I do one more day worth of logs. Once I finish doing that for the whole month, I just have to review the whole thing to eliminate asny dups I did not already catch, then count.

    At one day of logs every two weeks, that’ll take a a bit over another year before I finish. Hmm. Maybe I should speed up? Well, we’ll see.

  • Abulsme

    So far I have yet to miss a TV show I wanted to see. And yet there is no TV here at all. Hmmm…

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