The Apple TV remote uses infrared to control the Apple TV. However it’s not just the Apple TV that can receive infrared, your Mac can also be controlled by the infrared controller. When I first found out about this, I thought it was pretty cool. I used it to control iTunes for things like changing the song.
After a little while though this got a little annoying since from my couch position, it was controlling both my Apple TV and iMac. Pressing the play button and having a movie play on my Apple TV and a song start on my iMac just got annoying.