Tivo Induced Time Perception Disorder

I’ve had a personal video recorder (PVR) for about a year now,finding it an invaluable part of a modern lifestyle (to use a tiredcliché). While we watch little TV, the PVR allows us to ensure thatwe’re watching exactly what we want to watch, when we want to watchit. Even if that means that we want to catch Survivor but ourchildren have swimming that night.

Liberated bythe PVR, even when we’re watching a program “live” weintentionally sit down a bit late to enjoy the full luxury offast-forwarding along with the standard rewind functionality. Itreally is television freedom, though I know the fun won’t last, andrestrictive DRM is slowly going to take away all that PVRgiveth. 

We’re enjoying it while we can.

…my reality perception device — my brain –regularly tries to rely upon PVR-like functionality in the realworld…

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One interesting side-effect of the convenience benefits of aPVR — the user empowerment offering almost time-travel likefunctionality — is that my reality perception device (mybrain) regularly tries to rely upon PVR-like functionality inthe real world. More times than I care to remember, I’ve witnessedsomething while driving or just generally out and about, and I’lltry to mentally grasp how I can rewind the scene so I can point itout to my wife, or so I can focus on a detail I didn’t entirelycatch. Then I remember that I can’t rewind life, but it really isjarring when it happens, and it happens frequently. 

I mentioned this to my wife, and it turns out that she’soccasionally experienced the same perception quirk.

I suffer from a chronic case of Tivo Induced Time PerceptionDisorder. Years of MP3, DVD, and VCR use never brought on thisperception change, but something about the liberation of televisionfundamentally infected my brain.