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Time to cut the cable?

A customer looks over flat-panel televisions at a Best Buy store in Chicago, Ill.

A couple of recent technology news items are enough to make you wonder why you pay so much money for that coaxial cable. You know the cable I'm talking about, the one that pipes in the programming you want and a whole lot of channels you never watch. Apple introduced a new version of the Mac Mini computer and it features a port for connecting to your television so you can watch Hulu or Netflix or YouTube on your TV screen instead of a computer monitor. The Mini isn't the only computer to do this, just the latest. Meanwhile on Monday, Microsoft announced a deal that will make live sports programming from ESPN available on the Xbox 360.

With so much entertainment available on the internet, for free in many cases, why shell out all that cash for cable? Then again, with all those different options and hook ups and online menus and everything else, isn't cable easier despite the costs?

We talk to Mark McClusky of Wired Magazine about some easy options, both legal and illegal, for getting your on screen entertainment. We also speak with Frank Rose, author of a forthcoming book on the future of entertainment, about why the future of TV may not be won by whoever has the fanciest technology but by who has the simplest.

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