Ward’s World: Sorry - could you (not) repeat that, with inventor John Ward.

John Ward.
John Ward.
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Coming from an age of when there were just two, yes two television stations and before you wonder we did have sound in those days and these stations were the BBC and ITV. Now we have so many channels that are received by aerial, cable or a waddyoumacallit on your ‘device’ but in most cases, whatever you saw yesterday will be repeated today.

Years ago if you saw a programme you never saw it again unless back by ‘popular demand’ (read as in it’s cheaper to bung a repeat on) but now with the wonders of this entertainment age you have about eight or nine channels that at any one time you can watch the likes of ‘You’ve Been Framed’ within minutes of each other because as one finishes another one starts or is half way through.

The old joke about programmes interrupting the adverts has now become fact. The other week (or was it weak?), a programme started and within seven minutes there was an advert break! Seven minutes!. Problem is the advert breaks are so long that by the time we get back to the programme plot, I have forgotten what is going on although I do know from the ‘break’ what broadband services are available, what hotel to book into or the price of fish fingers but for the life of me I have no idea what is 
the story line to the programme I am supposed to be watching about – aaaaaaggghhhhh!!!

We have come a long way in some respects as we have remote controls that flick channels, set timers, zoom in and out and a lot of other things that by the time you read this there will be another remote with even more knobs and buttons to juggle with. In our day - sniff – the remote consisted of a broom handle and you jabbed button one of two and that was it – to adjust the sound it was round trip of three walking paces, scratch your rear end and sit down again. Oh how we suffered.

Remotes these days can be self diagnostic and sort out any problems – back then we clouted or thumped the side of the telly in question or if all else failed you ‘sent for the telly repair man’ who would come round and look at the set and then with a skilful hand give the set a thump in a spot we had missed out and all was well – hopefully.

Plan B was to crawl up on the roof and give the aerial a quick twiddle.

Today’s televisions are getting bigger by the minute – I like a model at the moment that does a lot of things but the fly in the ointment is do we have the wall moved out and the screen slid in as it’s getting that way – you know it’s bad news when you are on one to one speaking terms with the fork lift truck driver who is there to ‘install’ the set.

The instruction manual – this is anything from twenty to hundred plus pages thick but the ‘Quick start’ guide is four pages?!

Well I’ll leave you now as I think the adverts are coming on and I don’t want to miss the really exciting one with the meerkat selling insurance.