763 The Future of TV

Mark and Todd talk the latest in television technology and what the future may be like.

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Todd: So actually we talked a little bit about TVs in the past, what about TVs of the future? Nowadays you can watch television on this very tiny screens, like the ipod video. What do you think about that?

Mark: Right. I've just seen one of them for the first time. I think they're fantastic. They're really great. Yeah, especially when traveling. But the future of TV, I was listening to an interviewer a few nights ago with Bill Gates and he's going to try and move from computers to TV - interactive TV - and this sounds good. Yeah, TV of the future. Sounds great.

Todd: So what was he saying about interactive TV?

Mark: He was talking about if it was a quiz show you could actually join in with the quiz and answer the questions, or if you were watching the Olympics then you could actually choose which events you wanted to watch, so sometimes if they are showing the olympics on TV they'll show running and then maybe they'll show swimming and maybe they'll show archery. If you didn't want to watch swimming you could choose your schedule and what to watch.

Todd: Wow, that would be cool.

Mark: Yeah, and also for sports you could maybe choose your own sports team, which would be good.

Todd: Yeah, I actually saw another thing on TV in the future, and they we're saying because of what is happening now about buying television shows over the internet that soon there will be TV with no commercials. You just buy the program for one dollar and then you watch it without commercials

Mark: Yeah, that would be fun, yeah. That would be good. Hopefully, I want them to see them actually, I know they do a little bit, but I'd like it so you can hook up your PC to your TV as well. I know you can a little bit, so download things on your PC and then watch on the TV.

Todd: So when we're old and grey we'll be able to tell our children "In our day, we actually had to get up and turn the knob."

Mark: Right, but it's not so long ago. Only what - 10 years, 15 years ago?

Todd: I know. It's crazy.

Mark: Things are moving fast.

Learn Vocabulary from the lesson

if you don't mind me asking

If you don't mind me asking, how old are you?

'If you don't mind me asking' means that I hope you are not offended by the question I am about to ask you. You can use this if you want to ask someone a question that might be sensitive for them to talk about.

Notice the following:

  1. If you don't mind me asking, how long have you been ill?
  2. How tall are you, if you don't mind me asking?

turn the knob

I actually miss having to turn the knob because you don't have so many choices.

To 'turn the knob' refers to when televisions did not have remote controls and all the controls were on the television itself.

Notice the following:

  1. I can't remember what is was like to have to get up from your seat and turn the knob in order to change channel.
  2. A lot of the old fashioned televisions do not have remotes so you have to turn the knob.

stick with it

You pick a channel and you stick with it and then you watch it.

When you 'stick with it,' it means that you stay with something and don't change your mind.

Notice the following:

  1. If you have just started to exercise, you need to stick with it in order to get the benefits.
  2. Stick with it, you will get there in the end.


The remote control you just want to flick, flick, flick.

'Flick' refers to the action of changing channels on the television with a remote control.

Notice the following:

  1. He is always flicking over the channels.
  2. She has taken the remote control off me, because she says I annoy her when I always flick the channel.

you don't focus on the whole program

I often do that and like you say you don't focus on the whole program.

When 'you don't focus on the whole program,' it means that you are distracted from the television program that you are watching.

Notice the following:

  1. If you clean and watch TV at the same time, then you don't focus on the whole program.
  2. You don't focus on the whole program if you do other things as well.


Answer the following questions about the interview.

Keep Listening

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Vocabulary Challenge

Complete the sentences with the words below.
don't mind • knob • stick with
flicking • program
  1. It drives me crazy the way that he is always the remote. Just pick something.
  2. When you constantly change the channel, then you don't focus on the whole .
  3. You will probably have to classes for a few months before you notice any change.
  4. If you me asking, have you lost weight?
  5. He actually has one of those old televisions where you have to turn the .