[Top][All Lists]

[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index]

Re: [Fsfe-uk] Explanation of Tivosiation and problems - comments sought

From: Chris Croughton
Subject: Re: [Fsfe-uk] Explanation of Tivosiation and problems - comments sought
Date: Sat, 16 Dec 2006 02:02:00 +0000
User-agent: Mutt/1.3.28i

On Sat, Dec 16, 2006 at 12:40:43AM +0000, Nic James Ferrier wrote:
> Chris Croughton <address@hidden> writes:
> >> There are two reasons why free software licences should block
> >> tivoisation.  The first is that tivoisation prevents users from having
> >> control of their own computer.
> >
> > Does the inability to get and change the code for your car engine
> > control system "prevent you from control of your car"?  Or does not
> > having the code for your mobile phone prevent you from controlling
> > that?
> Yes. I hate that about cars. We, the consumer, have surrendered our
> ability to control the car (to make repairs for example).

Well, 'we' gave the government the ability to block our fiddling with
them many years ago, when 'we' allowed them to say whether a customised
car was roadworthy or not.  The same as 'we' allowed then to say that we
can't repair the wiring in our own houses any more.  And part of the
reason is because of the few who messed with them and caused trouble
(burning down the house because they rewired it incorrectly, causing
accidents with improperly maintained cars, etc.).  The vast majority of
people are not qualified to do those things safely (most people can't
even wire a mains plug safely).

> > And I'm a born tinkerer, most people just want the thing to work,
> > they don't even want to know that it has a processor let alone how
> > to program it.
> I don't think you are. You don't want to change things. That doesn't
> sound like the tinkerers I know.

Incorrect, there are many things I would like to change, but I don't
have an infinite amount of time to do so.  There are other things I
would rather change which are more important to me (and like most
programmers I would rather fiddle with my own code than with someone
else's, especially when their code doesn't meet my coding standards).

The point is that even with experience I don't have the time to
understand most applications well enough to mess with them, particularly
not when I need those applications to work reliably 24/7.  And I, unlike
most, don't have to worry about screwing things up for other people --
if I have to do a complete restore then it only affects me, for most
people there will be family, coworkers or customers who are affected as

> > First find a neutral term which doesn't pick on one manufactuer, and
> > define it at the start.  Then if you want to pick on one manufacturer as
> > an example make sure that it isn't going to be seen by a lot of people
> > as obviously incorrect in their area.
> I agree with this. "tivo"isation is a bad word. Why not "neutering"?


I don't see the locking of an appliance so that unqualified people can't
monkey with it a a bad thing.  I've seen too many 'faults' which were
caused by the user messing with things they didn't understand, and
wasted too much time trying to debug (or even reproduce) things caused
by a user who claims that "I didn't change anything!" (except, as they
admit later, for the things they changed "which made it better"), and in
many areas allowing unqualified (and unsupervised) people to mess with
them is downright dangerous and will get the manufacturer sued.  "No
user-servicable parts inside".

Chris C

reply via email to

[Prev in Thread] Current Thread [Next in Thread]