Loud ramblings of a Software Artisan

Wednesday 15 December 2004

SuSE 9.2

Got a Fedex package today: SuSE Linux Professionnal 9.2. Complimentary copy, I still don't know exactly why, but I suspect this is for my gphoto2 contributions. Problem: I still don't have a machine to install it on, since I still haven't a PC at home.

Thanks you SuSE.

One more iPod lock down

Looks like the Apple zealot will dislike this post. I'm sorry, but once again Apple decided to downgrade their iPod by locking down RealNetworks customers by preventing reading these tunes not purchased on iTMS.

Apple current practice is completely similar in the portable player market than Microsoft on the software market. They have a predominant market share with an attractive product, much like Microsoft once had, and they gained marketshare with a new attractive way to sell songs: iTMS. But iTMS songs require either iTunes or an iPod to be played. Actually, iTMS requires iTunes to buy a song, and iTunes is only available on Mac or the other predominent platform: Windows. One with the other make that Apple has the major marketshare with more than 90% of the portable hard-drive-based music players and may at least keep it. What will happen to customers that want to change their player and have some insane amount of iTMS purchased tunes ? Since Apple hasn't licensed their DRM, they'll have to either buy another iPod, or throw away their tunes.

I'll see from here a few people willing to tell that you can burn these songs in CD uncompressed. Sure! But have you listened to the recompressed result ? You've lost LOT of quality.

Update (Dec 15): apparently my phrasing was not accurate. I apologize. I said by preventing reading these tunes not purchased on iTMS. I should have said instead by preventing reading these DRMed tunes not purchased on iTMS. This does not prevent non DRM tunes to be played.

And I forgot to add (to reply to dave): DRM is evil and is just a way to screw up customers a little more. I have blogged about that in the past, but the articles aren't yet back online.

Update 2 (Dec 16): The Register has an article about this as well.

Update 3 (Dec 16): ArsTechnica also wrote about it.