The days of turning on a TV set and turning the knob to different channels are long over. Our kids have no idea what a UHF or VHF channel is and only use one button on the TV set for on and off. A channel is locked on to one frequency and then the work of the other box begins.
So how many different connected boxes are attached to your set? Of course there is the cable converter box offering us HD signals and perhaps even a DVR. Others love their TiVo box for recording shows and some have even gotten CableCards to access cable programming. Those that need their programming to follow them outside the home have attached a Slingbox to their set. And some have unplugged themselves from this cord but still need the connection to the web for their over the top boxes, including Roku. And with every new one you buy, is one finally unplugged? Perhaps you have added a Blu-Ray but disconnected your DVD player and your VHS player was removed years ago. And for the gamers in the family, a connection is needed for the Xbox, Wii, Playstation 3, or even a classic Atari (although I hope not).
And TV manufacturers have tried to incorporate connectivity to the web so homes can access their Hulu Plus or Netflix subscriptions through the TV directly and not through another box. But it seems there is a need for an external box whether we like it or not. Perhaps Apple should update their Apple TV box with Siri and enable it to talk to all the other boxes that connect to the TV set. Then at least we could reduce the number of remotes on our coffee table.