My severance ran out. Then I filed for unemployment and am waiting for that to kick in. Even when it does it will be a paltry amount. We cut expenses down immediately when I lost my job, but now we are getting creative at saving money. In my last post I mentioned that I was looking to cut out the remaining luxuries--dining out and cable TV. Here is some good advice about alternative TV programming.
I’m ready to disconnect cable TV, but I HAVE to have high speed Internet. I wouldn’t be able to write this blog or search for jobs or fill out unemployment vouchers online without it. Luckily, there is a lot of great TV content on the Internet! Check out Hulu (www.hulu.com) for a nice selection of prime time programs that you can watch the day after they premiere. There are also classic TV shows that you can watch On Demand. You can watch these shows on your computer or hook up your computer to the TV and watch on a bigger screen.
Here is the real jewel of this blog. A friend shared the following with me and now I would like to share it with you. I’m sorry if this is a bit technical. If you own a Sony Playstation 3 (PS3) there is a feature called a Media Server. Media Servers exist in several formats, including XBOX 360 and stand-alone appliances. I want to share the one that I am using. It is a software package that you install on a PC on your home network that the PS3 (and XBOX 360) recognizes called PlayOn (http://www.themediamall.com/playon). With PlayOn (approx $40) you can stream video content from many various Internet sources directly to your TV (through the PS3 or XBOX 360) like you would On Demand programs via cable. Out of the box, PlayOn supports Hulu, CBS, ESPN, CNN, YouTube and a Netflix subscription. Sign up for plug-ins at www.playonplugins.com and add tons more content. I’ve added plug-ins for HGTV, Food Network, NFL, PBS and more!
In tech news today, I see that the PS3 price will drop to $299 after Aug 19, 2009, making it a more affordable system for video. I didn’t even mention that through the PS Network, there are movies that you can download and play On Demand. Of course, it also works as a great console gaming system, too!
Between the local channels that I can get with the government set top box converters that I’m using for Digital TV, and PlayOn, I can get a lot of content for little money. Go ahead and check them out. Keep your high speed Internet connection and use it for more than just email and web browsing!
I’d love for you to share your comments with our readers about how to manage finances during this rough economy.
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