Sunday, April 20, 2008

intellectual property wars

Over on the Guardian, a commenter noticed that SOMEONE WAS WRONG ON THE INTERNET:

1) The reason Apple cannot stop anyone installing a retail copy of OSX on anything they want is the same reason Microsoft cannot stop anyone running a retail copy of Office on anything they want. It is also the reason Black and Decker cannot stop you using DIY drills in the way of trade, and the reason why Vauxhall cannot stop you installing after market parts in your old Cavalier, and the reason why Faber and Faber cannot stop you reading the Collected Poems of TS Eliot in the bathroom by making it a condition of sale that you agree not to.

It is because post-sales restrictions on use are not enforceable in the EU. Not by EULA, not by signed document at time of sale, not if you have to dance it to a jig and sing your agreement in Mandarin before leaving the store. You cannot relinquish your statutory rights as a condition of buying a product, and one of them is freedom from post sales restrictions on use. Read those guarantee forms vendors invite you to send in sometime. See that part about your statutory rights not being affected? Think that's there out of the goodness of their hearts? Its not, its there because its the law.

2) And no, you did not just license it, you bought a copy. As when you bought your copy of the Collected Poems. Or you bought that copy of the Rasumovsky Quartet. Or you bought that drill. Calling something a license not a sale does not make it so. If it walks and quacks like a sale, that is what it will be held to be.

3) And come out of your dream world about "OSX is written for the hardware, and consequently it is far more reliable. OSX is basically a hand tailored suit made in Hong Kong whilst windows is a mix clothes from Marks , Oxfam and things left on a bus. Nothing quite fits...."

OSX relates to its perfectly standard though mostly mid range hardware in exactly the same way any other OS does. It uses drivers. You may not be familiar with these things, they are bits of software written mostly by vendors which permit an OS to address the hardware in question. Driver quality is important. But there is no material difference in how any modern OS relates to hardware and drivers. Thinking that OSX has somehow a more intimate relationship to an nVidia graphics card than Windows or Linux is idiotic. And by the way - its not that the OS was written for the peripheral hardware. Its that the drivers were written for the OS.

Or maybe you are thinking of the processors? Cannot be. Surely you do not think that OSX was written for the Core 2 in some different way than Windows or Linux was?

Please wake up there!

The rest of the comment (yes, there's more) here; Jack Schofield's article, OpenMac advertised for $399.99, here.


Anonymous said...

"Over on the Guardian, a commenter noticed that SOMEONE WAS WRONG ON THE INTERNET:"

when is this going to stop being lol funny?


"Post-Google" by TAR ART RAT said...