Feature

The 'Enough Already' gadget: Making TV less annoying

A new device will mercifully (and automatically) mute your television any time an overexposed celebrity or tiresome catchphrase is mentioned

Can't bear to hear one more trite detail about Kim Kardashian's upcoming nuptials as you watch TV? Here's a solution: A device called the "Enough Already" that will allow viewers to tune-out a customized selection of names and phrases — ensuring that they never accidentally hear the color of Kardashian's bridesmaids' dresses. How does it work? Here, a brief guide:

What is the Enough Already?As its name suggests, the gadget was born of frustration. Sick of hearing about the same people on TV over and over again, MAKE blogger (and programming wizard) Matt Richardson devised a way to automatically mute his TV, he says, "so that I don't have to hear about Donald Trump's feud with whomever or Charlie Sheen's most recent rant." Using a basic open-source circuit board and TV's closed captioning service, he built a system that would silence his set whenever a designated "unnecessarily prominent celebrity" or phrase is mentioned, says Dylan Love at Business Insider.

How does it work?The Enough Already plugs into your cable box and scans through the embedded closed captioning data for keywords the user has programmed the device to flag, says Max Eddy at Geekosystem. When it hits on the designated name or phrase, it sends a signal that mutes your TV for 30 seconds, resetting each time the offending phrase recurs — "ensuring your delicate ears remain unmolested." 

Is it useful?As annoying as it is to constantly hear the phrase "throw me under the bus" on reality shows, or be subjected to Snooki's latest exploit, says Sean O'Neal at The A.V. Club, the Enough Already is a tad complex and impractical. Yet for those who'd rather "assemble a complicated device" than simply change the channel, it's the "perfect" solution. (Watch a video about how to assemble an Enough Already.)

Sources: A.V. Club, Business Insider, Geekosystem, MAKE

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