This quote from the article says it all: “The content and information on your cable box is too valuable to relegate it to second place, and jumping back and forth between interfaces is irritating and stupid.”
The interface is key. Closest I’ve seen someone come to an independent solution is TiVo which replaces the carriers cable box with it’s own cable box and DVR options. Compatible with pretty much all cable providers and some satellite. Problem is that the TiVo interfarce SUCKS! I tried it for 8 months and could not get over their slow and clunky interface. Currently I now use a Time Warner Cable DVR box but the best I’ve experienced is the DirecTV satellite boxes at my mom’s house. Pretty smooth and the interface makes a lot of sense.