Product Placement

Magnavox Remote Locator (Philips Electronics) .95

Image: Laura Copenhaver

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Sure, remote controls cut out the grueling back-and-forth of in-person channel changing, but the handheld boon has also created a new challenge: “Our research showed that losing remotes was a big problem,” says Stan Veltkamp, general manager of accessories at Philips. “People would end up finding them in their refrigerators, in their couches, everywhere.”

Sensing a need, Philips introduced the Magnavox Remote Locator. Attach a small receiver to the back of your remote, and it trills back its location from up to 30 feet away.

The locator itself is identical in size and shape to a remote, but, says Veltkamp, it has a feature that helps it avoid the remote’s wayward fate: Velcro backing. “You can attach it to anything,” he says.

Veltkamp is aware of the product’s shortcomings. The locator came out two years ago, and “it hasn’t been a great seller.” More people are buying sets with built-in locators, or “rather than pay[ing] $19.95 for a locator,” he says, they “just buy a replacement” — for as little as $8.

Philips has learned a valuable lesson from the Locator’s lost opportunity, says Veltkamp. “People want things to be very simple,” he explains. “You start adding too many options, and they’re just going to get confused.”

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Truth #1: The chaos is the point.

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SIX TRUTHS

Reclaiming power from those who abuse it often starts with telling the truth. And in "This Is How Authoritarians Get Defeated," MoJo's Monika Bauerlein unpacks six truths to remember during the homestretch of an election where democracy, truth, and decency are on the line.

Truth #1: The chaos is the point.

Truth #2: Team Reality is bigger than it seems.

Truth #3: Facebook owns this.

Truth #4: When we go to work, we're in the fight.

Truth #5: It's about minority rule.

Truth #6: The only thing that can save us is…us.

Please take a moment to see how all these truths add up, because what happens in the weeks and months ahead will reverberate for at least a generation and we better be prepared.

And if you think journalism like Mother Jones'—that calls it like it is, that will never acquiesce to power, that looks where others don't—can help guide us through this historic, high-stakes moment, and you're able to right now, please help us reach our $350,000 goal by October 31 with a donation today. It's all hands on deck for democracy.

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