BB pal Mitch Altman informs us that he's ceased manufacturing on his marvelous invention the TV-B-Gone, a keychain remote control that turns off any television with a push of the button. It's great fun in sports bars, airports, restaurants, and wherever else there's an idiot box that annoys you! Grab one now because when they're gone, you'll have to make your own (also great fun). Mitch writes:
In 2003 I quit my job to explore ways of making a living doing what I love doing. It was kind of scary, since I had no idea how I would make enough money after quitting my work. But I knew that I had to quit doing what was only OK, to make time to explore what I truly love. One thing I knew was that I wanted to design and make one TV-B-Gone remote control — just for me. I wanted to be able to turn TVs off in public places!
It took me a year and a half to make the first TV-B-Gone remote control. And when I did, I went all over San Francisco turning TVs off everywhere I went — and enjoying the hell out of it! And, of course my friends all wanted one. So, I made them for all of my friends. But, oddly, most of their friends wanted one. And when it turned out that many of the friends of my friends' friends also wanted one, I thought it would be interesting to make a bunch. So, I took a big gamble, and made 20,000 TV-B-Gone remote controls.
I thought it would take years to sell enough to make my money back. But, instead, this fantastic article in Wired.com on October 19th, 2004 made TV-B-Gone go viral on the first day of sales. And, I sold all 20,000 of the first batch of TV-B-Gone remote controls in 3 weeks! Thus, changing my life forever.
Since then I've traveled the world giving talks and workshops, encouraging everyone to explore and do what they may love.
But, for the first time since TV-B-Gone came out, sales slowed down enough so that I can no longer make a living from it. So, I will no longer be making any more. The batch in my warehouse is the last batch of TV-B-Gone universal remote controls that I'll manufacture.
It's been an amazing 11 years!
I don't know what is next for me. But I do know that I will continue to explore and do what I love. I'm excited to see what will transpire as a result of the choices I make in my life.
And, as always, I hope you will choose well with what you do with the time of your life.