The following is a guest post from Jacob of
Early Retirement Extreme. I am on vacation this week and will be having guest posts while I am gone. If anyone else wants to submit a guest post please email me.
When I was a student I saved a ton of money and time by not having a
TV. Instead I just watched DVDs on my laptop. Now one might think that
this could be pretty pricey in terms of buying or renting DVDs.
However, this was not the case as I joined a “DVD exchange” that had
been started by one of my fellow grad students. The basic idea is that
everybody provides a list of the DVDs they own. These lists can either
be collected in a central database, or simply sent around via email or
a mailing list. One thing you can count on is that your friends
probably share the same taste in movies and series as you do, but that
you may not own exactly the same DVDs. For instance, I own all seasons
of Startrek TNG while my wife owns the entire ten seasons of Stargate.
Conversely, friends of our owned all of Babylon 5 and Black Adder
(welcome to nerd central). So instead of all of us getting a couple of
DVDs at a time from netflix or pursuing the impossibility of getting
them from blockbuster or each paying $50 or more per season at the
store, we simply borrowed them from each other. My recommendation is
that the entire network somehow agrees on how to properly treat a DVD
(like fine optics!) and how long one should generally keep a DVD (not
more than a week!) before handing it back. Surprisingly not everybody
is into sharing, but there is also many people who think it’s a great
idea but who haven’t thought of sharing. Therefore if you are starved
for home entertainment just make a list of your DVDs and start putting