Defective by Design

After reading yesterday’s announcement from Apple regarding the iPad, then browsing their site while drooling over the specs, I decided I would try and get one when they become available.  I have become so accustomed to my iPhone 3Gs that I can’t imagine having a bigger extension of that for use around the house or while travelling.

But then, I started reading about all the Digital Restrictions Management that gets bundled with the product(s), and really started questioning my ideals. Being a proponent of the free and open source software movement, I am all about not being restricted to do what I want with devices and software I purchase. The sad fact of the matter is that everything Apple does works against that.

The people over at DefectiveByDesign.org lays it all out pretty well, which further convinced me that I have been duped by vendor lock-in, with restrictions on everything I can do with my devices. This sucks, and it is something I hope all of you think about and question. While the gadget lust is still there, I am feeling conflict from my true geek side, which tells me not to waste my money on something that is, in effect, defective by design.

About Will Chatham

Will Chatham is an Information Security Analyst, OSCP, Ethical Hacker, and Penetration Tester at a federal data center in Asheville, NC. Since Netscape 2.0, he has worked in a wide array of environments including non-profit, corporate, small business, and government. His varied background, from developer to search engine optimizer to security professional, has helped him build a wide range of skills that help those with whom he works and teaches.
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2 Comments

  1. Well there’s always an argument to be had on all things, and DRM certainly has caused some heck raising. I can’t stand it either, but I understand it (to a degree). I believe in paying your coders, musicians, artist etc. for any work they do (unless they are giving it away on purpose). FOSS is great! However, DRM isn’t protecting FOSS, it’s protecting rights of the persons that created the content even if created with FOSS. In other words, if I write a book (and starve the entire time) and even if I use Linux etc. to write it, when it comes time to publish (ebook etc), I want to be payed for each book. You wouldn’t (normally) work all week long, then NOT expect a paycheck on payday. I agree on NOT using DRM to prevent me from letting my Wife use the content etc. but I’ve not had an issue with that yet. Remember, we the people, caused DRM to come about. At least Apple has moved more towards Open Source than MS in their OS and the iPad is conforming to the ePub standards (open source software), even if they do add a DRM layer to the eBooks (pushed by the publishers). You have to admit, Apples goodies are sexy and fun to use though. ;0)

  2. I hear what you are saying, but if it weren’t for the fact that the recording industry had another record-breaking year of profits (I’ll find the link and post it later), I would be more sympathetic.

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