Few people have heard of it, yet many consider John Blankenbaker's KENBAK-1 to be the first commercial personal computer.

Koss introduced these headphones over 40 years ago, and they remain affordable favorites to this day.

SecureView - RCA 13" Television For Prisons


While it's true that while in jail you lose many of the rights and privileges of The Outside, no one would dream of denying television to any of our citizens.  You might be doing a stretch in The Jar, but there's no crime so heinous that you have to miss a minute of your favorite soap opera.

Secureview_03miniHere's my understanding of how it works (this info is second hand... I've not been to jail because they couldn't get that horse-thievery charge to stick...).  While in jail a prisoner can earn points to spend at the little store in The Big House.  You can buy things like candy & art supplies, but one of the top shelf things is a television like this one.  Something about this scenario reminds me of winning tickets at a carnival, then looking over all the prizes in the redemption booth trying to get the coolest thing while trying not to get ripped off.

The SecureView is a pretty standard RCA 13" color TV.  There's no remote, nor internal speakers - you're expected to use headphones so as not disturb your bunkmates.  The only input on the back is RF, so no hooking up a Playstation.  Even though this TV was manufactured only a few years ago (2004 according to the sticker), I recognize the bulbous shape from a late 80's line of TV's.  Seems like RCA has found new life in an old design and can offer this model to (drum roll) a captive market (rim shot).Secureview_02

Of course the prominent feature of this TV is that it's made of clear plastic.  This is so that prisoners can't hide anything inside the television cabinet.  Spooky thought, eh?   Still it makes for a neat TV set for the rest of us - ideal for hooking up old game consoles that only have RF outputs anyway.  These do come up on Ebay from time to time, but I found this in a pawn shop for $10.  I guess when you're sprung from The Pokey, the TV is yours to keep, so why not get a couple bucks for it from the local pawn?

In jail, access to the world of TV must be a great comfort.  Despite its interesting looks, I can see why an ex-con might not want to keep the TV around as a souvenir once they're free.  I like it because I think that it's cool to see the innards of an operating TV, though I must admit that I do get a little chill when The People's Court comes on.


1950's Westinghouse portable TV

Sinclair miniature TV

Seiko wristwatch TV


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