It has been argued that open source is only good at commoditizing big markets, but the news that TV-B-Gone has been open sourced perhaps provides a compelling counterpoint. (OStatic has a great write-up.)
I've never used the TV-B-Gone remote, which lets the user turn off just about any TV, anywhere. But I've long wanted to get one. The power to instantly stop the noise box is...tempting..
Even so, I may now wait a bit longer to see what the budding TV-B-Gone community will make of this already useful product. As Phil Torrone from MAKE Magazine suggests, this supposedly frivolous device could be the spark to a young would-be engineer's mind and, because it's open source, she can let out the resultant creativity in the form of a modified TV-B-Gone.
You may not think much of TV-B-Gone. But the potential it has as an open-source project is impressive.