Texas Instruments Learns Nothing, Goes After Hobbyists Again
from the nerd-rage-perk-activated dept
Via slashdot comes the news that Texas Instruments is still more than happy to piss off its most loyal users, releasing new firmware specifically to block third party programs and prevent downgrading the system to something more flexible:
"Texas Instruments has struck back against Nspire gamers and hackers with even stronger anti-downgrade protection in OS 3.0.2, after the TI calculator hacking community broke the anti-downgrade protection found in OS 2.1 last summer and the new one in OS 3.0.1 a month ago. In addition to that, in OS 3.0.1 the hacker community found Lua programming support and created games and software using it. Immediately, TI retaliated by adding an encryption check to make sure those third-party generated programs won’t run on OS 3.0.2."
So then, business as usual for TI, who a couple of years back sent out DMCA takedown notices in an effort to remove posted code that allowed their scientific calculators to run custom software. Having learned nothing from that situation (other than perhaps "misguided might makes ‘right’"), TI has decided to bypass the broken DMCA process (well, "broken" as in anybody can use it for just about anything, not that it doesn’t work) and just go ahead and brick the modified calculators.
Not only have they learned nothing from their own experience, but they’ve completely missed any sort of cautionary notes from the epic saga of "Sony vs. The h4x0rz," in which a console manufacturer unwisely removed functionality that users paid for with a fatuous "update," only to find themselves staring down the barrel of an enterprising jailbreaker. And then there was that whole thing about their network being taken down (still ongoing). I’m sure TI will be fine, though. After all, it has no online community to protect, having shooed most of them away two years ago. And the Sony story isn’t over yet, so there’s always a chance that forcing limitations on your die-hard supporters will result in more sales.