The Life of Riley: Digital Dismay

This is something I expected – and what a revoltin’ development this is! The Government mandated all television stations go from transmitting a reliable analog signal to the more susceptible digital signal. This cost stations thousands of dollars, and forced some small stations out of business. I suppose one reason was the television manufacturing industry wanted everyone to have to buy new digital equipment. The cable and satellite industries made out pretty good too. If you didn’t want to buy a new TV, you have to buy, or rent, a digital converter for each TV.

You could also get a digital converter to receive over-the-air signals. The government sponsored a program offering discount digital adapters. Basically a digital converter will allow your older television sets to receive the digital signal, allowing you to to receive the major networks (for now) but often makes it necessary to purchase new outside antenna systems, or, using rabbit ears. Locate your set near a window so it can receive the less reliable digital signals.

Digital signals seem to be more readily disrupted when the weather keeps me inside, watching TV. Apparently, wind gusts can also dispupt the audio signal. Well, I’m old enough to have a VCR, not a Teevo, so I can watch tapes when the signal is bad.


Jerry Riley comments for the News Bulletin. He is a retired telecommunications supervisor.