I'm using Plex, similar to Boxee but specifically made for Macs. Plex also stems from the XBMC project. It integrates more within itself than the NYT article author's setup: Plex handles movies, photos, iTunes, Pandora, Netflix, Hulu, LastFM, AppleMovieTrailers and many more (even ICanHasCheezburger
), all in the same user interface. Pick up a Harmony remote--Plex has direct support for it and then you won't have to mess with a keyboard or mouse.
To make updates and changes to the Mac running Plex, I VNC into it from another Mac in the house (using ChickenOfTheVNC). That way, I don't have to turn on the TV and dig up a keyboard and mouse for "maintenance" jobs on the Plex Mac.
Plex is skinnable and there are active communities developing Plex, writing new plugins and improving several skins for it. And have I mentioned that it's all free (at least for now). Boxee eventually will "monetize" its project somehow.