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Android Tricorder Killed By CBS

timothy posted more than 2 years ago | from the was-about-to-grab-it-actually dept.

Android 247

First time accepted submitter josn writes "Today I found out that Moonlight's Tricorder app, which I always install on Android devices, is gone. Google received a DMCA letter from CBS. I think it is a shame that CBS thinks it needs to kill a free and open source project giving a ad-less app. I, for one, sent a message to CBS explaining that this fan-supported app is not bad, but good for them, and asked them to reconsider. I hope, especially for the author, who must have spent a lot of time on this app, that they do."

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Its the first app I install ... installed (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37292466)

This sucks. Why? Corporate numptyness gone mad.

Re:Its the first app I install ... installed (4, Funny)

Jeremiah Cornelius (137) | more than 2 years ago | (#37292508)

CBS. What have they done, that is worth shitting on, in 30 years?

I say that a bunch of Anonymous types ought to buy microwave equipment and blast their Sat feed offline.

Re:Its the first app I install ... installed (5, Interesting)

sarysa (1089739) | more than 2 years ago | (#37292820)

It's available on google code still. It's a little bit of a pain to build...I had to combine the HermitAndroid and HermitLibrary src into the Tricorder project, and then delete said libraries. (but I build with CLI, eclipse may end up being easy peasy) svn checkout http://moonblink.googlecode.com/svn/trunk [googlecode.com] moonblink-read-only As I'm not an anonymous coward, if I distributed the APK, would the DMCA trolls smash my head open?

Re:Its the first app I install ... installed (2)

sarysa (1089739) | more than 2 years ago | (#37292842)

Blah formatting. I was in such a rush I forgot to add some br's.

svn checkout http ://moonblink.googlecode.com/svn/trunk moonblink-read-only

(remove the space...can't stop it from being turned into a link)

Thall Shalt Not Ape LCARS GUI (1)

cmholm (69081) | more than 2 years ago | (#37293364)

Per the short and sweet developer's note behind the link, Roddenberry stipulated that others could use the 'tricorder' name. The take down notice seems to take issue with the LCARS look-n-feel. Thus, CBS could in theory start throwing takedown notes at all the sites featuring LCARS GUI themes. I'm going to guess the only reason this particular app got noticed is because enough Android phones have seeped through the ranks at CBS and their in-house counsel.

As such, should the developer (or others) care to, a fix is as close as a widget facelift. I suspect a change of font, color, and a couple of curves into steampunk-ish curlycues ought to do it. Unfortunately, the developer can't come up with a sufficient value of [reSources * wIll] to justify testing where this app would fit within look and feel case law [computerlaw.com] . I sympathize with the developer's predicament.

Lame! (5, Interesting)

barlevg (2111272) | more than 2 years ago | (#37292470)

I love that app. Does anyone know, for those of us who still have it installed, Android App Market doesn't automatically uninstall apps without user permission (like they'll remove books from the Kindle) in cases like this, do they?

Re:Lame! (2)

Manos_Of_Fate (1092793) | more than 2 years ago | (#37292512)

Like Apple, they have the ability, but IIRC the only circumstances under which it has been used were to remove malware that made its way into the Andriod store.

Re:Lame! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37292576)

Unlike Apple, it can be side-loaded on Android.

Re:Lame! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37293272)

"Side-loaded"? In other words, what people have called "installed" for the last 40+ years?

Re:Lame! (5, Informative)

Artifex (18308) | more than 2 years ago | (#37292752)

No, but last night I had it installed when I wiped & installed a later ROM. When it got through auto-reinstalling my backed up apps from Market, Tricorder was no longer there :(

Just goes to show, ya gotta back up your software locally (In this case, the .apks); can't trust a vendor to store it for you.

Re:Lame! (2)

RobbieThe1st (1977364) | more than 2 years ago | (#37292798)

*sigh* I've been saying this for a long time.
This is why you shouldn't use other companies to store your files, unless you locally encrypt it first - don't want a rogue DCMA taking down your files, now, do you?
You should also keep multiple local copies, just in case. It's always worth it.

Re:Lame! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37292978)

I make multiple copies of all my local files and directories. All that duplication really starts to take up space once you get 5-6 levels down into the tree though. I once had a file 7 directories down. I had 2187 copies of that thing laying around!

Re:Lame! (2)

Zen Punk (785385) | more than 2 years ago | (#37293070)

I think you're doing it wrong.

Re:Lame! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37292836)

Sorry, but I don't think it is lame.

Actually, I believe, it goes much further in the lameness dimension and reaches the "outrageous" milestone.

Not because I'm denying anyone the owned copyright... but do ponder for a minute what do you have... No, what do you really have as a cultural trait of your own?

You couldn't sing "Happy Birthday", now some fictional story shows up for, say, almost 50 years and you're still not entitled to use it as public culture. What next, copyrights for jokes? "We want to laugh, but we were C&Ded"

I don't think the "tricorder" thing is so serious; but not owning even a meme -- that is very worrisome. Combine that with intellectual property ("you're free to think whatever you want, except this idea, which is ours") and you start to have a less pleasant world to live in.

It's 1984 for real this time, with Fahrenheit 451 added for good measure.

Re:Lame! (4, Informative)

nbetcher (973062) | more than 2 years ago | (#37292860)

No. It does not. Also, you can still install the Tricorder app by finding the APK on the web, checking 'Unknown Sources' (Settings->Applications), then issuing: 'adb install tricorder.apk' while your phone is connected to a PC that has the ADB drivers installed. Otherwise you can download the APK to your phone and use Astro Filemanager to install it.

Re:Lame! (3, Informative)

JesusFreke (1216908) | more than 2 years ago | (#37293000)

"Unknown Sources" has nothing to do with using adb install. It will work whether or not you have "Unknown Sources" checked or not. That is only if you want to allow other applications on the device to install applications e.g. allow the browser to install an apk that it downloaded, or allow a third party market application to install an application.

Re:Lame! (1)

stephanruby (542433) | more than 2 years ago | (#37293394)

It only does remote uninstalls in case of active malware (that got installed through the Market). Just to be safe thought, if I were you, I'd root my phone and backup the app with Titanium Backup (their free version is enough).

I don't ever expect Google to turn themselves into Amazon, it would be a stupid PR move on their part, but if there is ever a court order ordering them to do a mass remote uninstall, I don't expect them to refuse such an order.

Another reason not to develop android apps (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37292472)

The market is flooded with complete shit, and no matter how much time you spend developing for that platform (which is shit compared to WP7 - C#/XNA vs Java/OGL) you will never make a profit unless you are extremely lucky or a marketing wiz.

Re:Another reason not to develop android apps (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37292526)

As if a stupid little app that just looks like a Star Trek tricorder doesn't qualify as "complete shit". Whoever developed that ought to be using their time on more productive pursuits.

Re:Another reason not to develop android apps (5, Insightful)

ColdWetDog (752185) | more than 2 years ago | (#37292566)

As if a stupid little app that just looks like a Star Trek tricorder doesn't qualify as "complete shit". Whoever developed that ought to be using their time on more productive pursuits.

Like what? Posting on Slashdot?

Just sayin'

Re:Another reason not to develop android apps (5, Informative)

barlevg (2111272) | more than 2 years ago | (#37292620)

The app is surprisingly useful: accelerometer, audio spectrum analyzer, compass to name a few... it does everything you'd expect a "real" tricorder to do, with the only limitations being the phone hardware.

Re:Another reason not to develop android apps (2)

GameboyRMH (1153867) | more than 2 years ago | (#37293136)

I had a joke app like this on my old PalmOS devices. It didn't have any real scanning functions, it had configurable messages you could bring up after a "scan" by pressing one of the scroll buttons on the PDA. I programmed messages into it like "No intelligent life found" and "Biohazard: Extreme bacterial infestation detected" and "Methane eruption source located"

"...a add-less app..." Really? (1)

steevven1 (1045978) | more than 2 years ago | (#37292482)

Come on, editors... "an adless app" or "an ad-less app" would have been okay, but this?

Re:"...a add-less app..." Really? (5, Funny)

scarboni888 (1122993) | more than 2 years ago | (#37292534)

No it's spelled right - the tricorder app is known for only being able to perform subtraction operations. :)

Damn it Jim... (4, Funny)

fahrbot-bot (874524) | more than 2 years ago | (#37292494)

...I'm a doctor, not a copyright lawyer.

And now (5, Interesting)

geekoid (135745) | more than 2 years ago | (#37292506)

we see the power of the android system.

I can still load the app from other sources.

Re:And now (1)

thegarbz (1787294) | more than 2 years ago | (#37292614)

And more importantly I just backed up the .apk file so next time I flash my phone I can still re-install the program.

Re:And now (1)

geekoid (135745) | more than 2 years ago | (#37292658)

I wonder if we can find the source? I suppose I could decompile. hmm.

Re:And now (2)

larry bagina (561269) | more than 2 years ago | (#37292846)

You could follow the link in the summary. Tip: code.google.com.

Re:And now (1)

maxume (22995) | more than 2 years ago | (#37292902)

At the moment, they appear to be carefully hidden in the moonblink Google Code svn.

For information about what it was (2)

Necroman (61604) | more than 2 years ago | (#37292510)

A little googling turn up this [makeuseof.com] . Looks like it would have been fun to play with.

Re:For information about what it was (3, Informative)

element-o.p. (939033) | more than 2 years ago | (#37292666)

Once you get past the geek-factor -- and it's considerable -- the tricorder app actually is kind of cool. It wraps several useful functions into a single app, and they all work rather well. I wish the accelerometer would display in some kind of useful unit, rather than a generic graph, and I wish it had some kind of a peak indicator, but even as it is, it was a useful app.

Damn (1)

confused one (671304) | more than 2 years ago | (#37292514)

It's going to be a real problem when the Klingons show up for real, and claim ownership of that name and then hold the entire planet responsible for violating the trademark.

Re:Damn (1)

GoodNewsJimDotCom (2244874) | more than 2 years ago | (#37292546)

I'd pay to see Klingons vs MPAA. The Klingons fight hard, but the MPAA fight dirty and have lots of money.

Re:Damn (1)

dstar (34869) | more than 2 years ago | (#37292636)

Yes, but the Klingons have photon torpedoes.

Re:Damn (1)

Chris Mattern (191822) | more than 2 years ago | (#37292712)

Yes, but the Klingons have photon torpedoes.

No they don't; they have disruptors.

Re:Damn (2, Informative)

iluvcapra (782887) | more than 2 years ago | (#37292830)

Klingon cruisers are definitely equipped with photon torpedoes in-canon; they use they against V'Ger in ST:TMP. Birds of Prey fire torpedoes in ST6. It is a cloaked Bird of Prey that fires while cloaked, so its possible previous variations were different; Christopher Lloyd'd (Kruge's) ship in ST3 destroyed the Grissom with an undisclosed weapon that were probably disruptors, though later, after being damaged it alternates and fires what are almost definitely torpedoes.

Re:Damn (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37293008)

Billy, your mother says it's time to come up stairs and set the table for dinner.
Also we need to have a little talk about you getting fired from yet another job...
You're 35 years old and it's about gosh darn time you start being responsible.
Did you even cut the grass yet? You know how my back gets when I mow.

Re:Damn (1)

Christof_Deluca (870653) | more than 2 years ago | (#37293332)

And my Bat'leth!

Re:Damn (2)

Commontwist (2452418) | more than 2 years ago | (#37293004)

Substitute Ferengi (fused with tribble DNA) for MPAA and that should help the conceptualization.

Petetion (1)

bigsexyjoe (581721) | more than 2 years ago | (#37292544)

This is the kind of annoying thing the lawyers just automatically do. I think a petition campaign might be effective in this case. If the app doesn't harm them, annoying geeks does, they might reconsider.

Not Again (1)

Squiffy (242681) | more than 2 years ago | (#37292550)

I'm so sick of this bullshit I could just scream.

Re:Not Again (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37293428)

I agree.

Computer - End Program.

Looks like they took down most of them.... (2)

NeutronCowboy (896098) | more than 2 years ago | (#37292586)

I can only find one tricorder app on the Android market. And the one I have installed has gone missing. At least they didn't remotely remove it.

Meh, hopefully they can bring them back with a similar name. Quadcorder maybe?

Re:Looks like they took down most of them.... (1)

geekoid (135745) | more than 2 years ago | (#37292674)

It's not the name, it's the style of the images.

Re:Looks like they took down most of them.... (1)

Psion (2244) | more than 2 years ago | (#37292788)

Actually, it isn't the name "tricorder" that's at issue here. According to the original text, Roddenberry himself said anyone who could produce a functional equivalent was allowed to use the name "Tricorder" ... the problem is the use of an interface that mimics the LCARS user interface from later Star Trek shows. Tweak the look and I bet he'd still be able to get away with calling it a tricorder.

Re:Looks like they took down most of them.... (1)

One Louder (595430) | more than 2 years ago | (#37293118)

But that would be covered by a *design patent* not a copyright. Copyright covers *specific* creative works - I don't see how this app could violate a copyright unless it included *specific* elements owned by CBS, such as sounds and images. Just putting rounded rectangles on the screen should not be enough to trigger a copyright takedown since CBS would need to point to the specific original work that was copied. LCARs itself cannot be copyrighted - the name can be trademarked, and certain design elements could be patented.

Re:Looks like they took down most of them.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37293326)

But that would be covered by a *design patent* not a copyright. Copyright covers *specific* creative works - I don't see how this app could violate a copyright unless it included *specific* elements owned by CBS, such as sounds and images. Just putting rounded rectangles on the screen should not be enough to trigger a copyright takedown since CBS would need to point to the specific original work that was copied. LCARs itself cannot be copyrighted - the name can be trademarked, and certain design elements could be patented.

Technically, you're probably right. But, one single guy crunching out his own code and giving it away for free can't afford to hire a lawyer to defend himself (even if he's in the right) - especially against a corporate behemoth. They threaten - he folds. It's that simple. Let's just hope Anonymous' next target is CBS.

Holy shit! (-1, Offtopic)

Spunkee (183938) | more than 2 years ago | (#37292594)

Holy shit! My old account is still active. Now I can stop trolling as AC!

Mod me off topic motherfuckers! My UID (dick size ) speaks for itself. Haven't posted in years and don't give a shit about 9/11 conspiracy anymore. You'd think I've grown up... And I have. But not on here, folks. I think I was 14 or younger when I signed up.

And android still sucks for developing apps for profit. Market is flooded with shit, and you have to be very lucky or a marketing genius to make money off it. Marketing geniuouses will not be developing apps, so that leaves the very lucky option. You're probably not going to develop the next Angry Birds, and OGL kind of sucks compared to XNA. Also Java cs C#/.NET - putting aside cross-platforminess, C# wins hands down.

Just my opinion. Fuck off.

PS: No 10 minute wait time?!?!

Spunkee is a dumb name, and it's incredible I remembered the password. I thought slashdot purged inactive accounts years ago...

Trademark (1)

Enderandrew (866215) | more than 2 years ago | (#37292606)

Does CBS even own a Star Trek trademark? Isn't that owned by Paramount/Viacom?

And I get that you need to defend trademarks, but I don't know that a tricorder app violates that. JJ Abrams is in no hurry on the next Star Trek movie. There is no TV show on the air. Keeping fans thinking about Star Trek with little things like this only adds value to the property on the whole.

Re:Trademark (2)

DiabolicallyRandom (2449482) | more than 2 years ago | (#37292682)

Corporate ownership ----- At Star Trek's creation, Norway Productions, Roddenberry's production company, shared ownership with Desilu and, after Gulf+Western acquired Desilu in 1967, with Paramount Pictures, the conglomerate's film studio. Paramount did not want to own the unsuccessful show; net profit was to be shared between Norway, Desilu/Paramount, Shatner, and NBC but Star Trek lost money, and the studio did not expect to syndicate it. In 1970 Paramount offered to sell all rights to Star Trek to Roddenberry, but he could not afford the $150,000 ($848,000 today) price. In 1989 Gulf+Western renamed itself as Paramount Communications, and in 1994 merged with Viacom.[70]:218,220,223 In 2005 Viacom divided into CBS Corporation, whose CBS Television Studios subsidiary retained the Star Trek brand, and Viacom, whose Paramount Pictures subsidiary retained the Star Trek film library and rights to make additional films.[71]

Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Star_Trek [wikipedia.org] (bottom of page, which has original sources)

Re:Trademark (2)

One Louder (595430) | more than 2 years ago | (#37293158)

If it's about the trademark, why file for a DMCA takedown, since that's for copyrights, not trademarks.

Damned if the do damned if they don't (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37292612)

Everyone always thinks it's an evil corporation trying to spoil fun but there's a fundamental reason. If they don't defend trademarks and copyrights then other corporations can use the names to sell products. What's to stop Apple or Microsoft from releasing a new PDA or tablet computer called a "Tricorder"? They can say CBS failed to enforce the trademark so it no longer applies. What if the device sucks and the name Tricorder takes on negative image or worse yet becomes a bad joke? Then their trademark overall is damaged and it wasn't even from a product they produced. Trademarks are like left over budget money, use it or loose it or in this can enforce it. Change the law so they don't have to enforce every instance and create a system where freeware and small providers can ask to use the name and maybe things would be different.

Re:Damned if the do damned if they don't (2)

0123456 (636235) | more than 2 years ago | (#37292630)

What's to stop Apple or Microsoft from releasing a new PDA or tablet computer called a "Tricorder"?

Where do I buy a CBS Tricorder?

Re:Damned if the do damned if they don't (2)

kat_skan (5219) | more than 2 years ago | (#37292786)

You don't. If you read the takedown notice it turns out CBS has some kind of PADD-themed Star Trek triva app [apple.com] in the Itunes store and they don't want competition. Which is sensible considering the comments make it sound pretty pants.

Re:Damned if the do damned if they don't (1)

Riceballsan (816702) | more than 2 years ago | (#37292784)

If it were say a system that mattered for the name, say the app was called Star-Trek the next generation gadget. or whatever I could see it, the actual series name would be harmful for them to have used by others, but the name of one small item in the show, lets say it were microsoft, and they did release a tri-corder as a stand alone device based on windows CE, it gave inaccurate information and blue screened every 2 seconds. Would that effect how likely you will be to watch the next star trek movie or show? How about if a new sci-fi movie had a tri-corder in it, would you mistake it for a movie endorsed by the writers of star-trek because you saw a tricorder in the commercial? Something that is large and key to the identification of the show, the names of the main characters the starship enterprise even the main races, etc... but seriously a small background device that was never a selling point or a primary focus of the series, that is ridiculous.

Killed? (1)

brit74 (831798) | more than 2 years ago | (#37292638)

I've never heard of the tricorder app before. After finding some information about it ( http://www.makeuseof.com/tag/turn-your-android-phone-into-a-real-star-trek-tricorder/ [makeuseof.com] ) and looking at what it does: "sense environmental factors like magnetic flux, acceleration, sound waves and even solar activity...", it seems to me that saying the project has been "killed" by CBS seems a bit premature. The interface and name ("Tricorder") is certainly drawn from Star Trek inspiration, and while I don't see how this harms the Intellectual Property (read: I don't know why CBS won't just let it go, other than a typical corporate knee-jerk response to crackdown on using IP; although I suppose, since it's under Trademark, CBS might have to actively defend their trademark or else they lose it), I also don't see any reason why the Tricorder can't change the interface and name and continue life as usual. Saying that the project is "killed" seems a bit melodramatic when the reality is that the Tricorder app is suspended until they change the name and interface.

(BTW, I thought the "look and feel" of interfaces wasn't covered by Intellectual property. Although, even if true, I suppose the Tricorder creators might not have the cash on hand to defend their case in court, even if they would win.)

Re:Killed? (2)

the eric conspiracy (20178) | more than 2 years ago | (#37292872)

Look and feel can be covered by a design patent.

However I would think any such design patent would be expired or moot given the time frames involved.

CBS (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37292644)

Every company in America is shit I hope they collapse.
We really don't need large company's. The small ones provide most of the employment.
Less large corp. equal more employment let them all eat shit and die.

Re:CBS (1)

Spunkee (183938) | more than 2 years ago | (#37292700)

I work for a small employer, and agree wholeheartedly. The big companies are on the verge of collapse. Enjoy the show, and stay out of debt! Don't buy a house now and rent for a couple of more years.

I don't get what the deal is here. (2)

Dachannien (617929) | more than 2 years ago | (#37292646)

You can't copyright the word "tricorder". The app (according to the posts that someone else posted here) doesn't infringe on any copyrights of screen design or anything like that (and it looks more like the LCARS interface from TNG, which CBS holds no claim to - that would be Viacom, owners of Paramount).

There is only one live entry for a registered trademark for "tricorder", and that's held by Paul Allen's company named Kiha Software, which holds the trademark as it relates to mobile device programs.

So, where does CBS get the balls to get this app taken down?

Re:I don't get what the deal is here. (1)

josn (603785) | more than 2 years ago | (#37292736)

CBS apparently claims to have rights on the screen designs. So you probably could create a 'tricorder' app, if you remove the round edges in the screens ..

Re:I don't get what the deal is here. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37292766)

Well, you could read the article, and see where it describes the design as deriving from the patterns they have for Star Trek.

Re:I don't get what the deal is here. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37293424)

Does it use tricorder sound-effects from the show? They would have a valid claim if that's the case.

why android? (1)

roc97007 (608802) | more than 2 years ago | (#37292672)

The Tricorder was available in the nineties for the Palm platform. Why now?

Re:why android? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37292802)

Because a lot of people actually own androids.

Re:why android? (1)

roc97007 (608802) | more than 2 years ago | (#37292904)

Ummmm, the original Palm Pilot and its followons were deu rigeur geekwear throughout the dot com boom. I'm sorry you didn't get the memo.

You may be confusing PalmOS devices to whatever it turned into when HP bought them.

Re:why android? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37292926)

They object to the use of the LCARS style interface, providing a link to their paid PADD app for the iPad as an example. I'd imagine they're trying to kill anything even remotely related in a misguided attempt to bolster sales of said app (e.g. if they bring it to Android, or so it's exclusive to the iPad/iPhone). It's kinda sad since their app is basically a themed webbrowser for startrek.com, while Tricorder is actually useful and serves the same general purpose as the fictional version.

Re:why android? (1)

roc97007 (608802) | more than 2 years ago | (#37292938)

Really. Well, that sucks even more. I actually use the Tricorder app, and I have absolutely no interest in Star Trek fangeek content. I've seen all the photos of Nana Visitor I care to see this lifetime. They'd be better served hiring the guy and making it a paid (but inexpensive) app.

Re:why android? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37293054)

Is it possible to claim that because they did not protect their supposed intellectual property in the past, they have given up those "rights"? Guess I don't actually know, maybe the earlier programs licensed the IP from them.

Re:why android? (1)

roc97007 (608802) | more than 2 years ago | (#37293100)

I believe it's the same author. I don't believe there was IP licensed in the past, and I think you raise a valid point.

Who gives a fuck? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37292800)

I think it is a shame that CBS thinks it needs to kill a free and
open source project giving a add-less app.

 
This just shows how fucking dumb most Slashtards are. No one gives a fuck about open source outside of a handful of assholes. Being open source is in no way the magic standard to live up to. It means next to nothing outside of the tech world.

You'd think after the beating Sony took ... (2)

slashfoxi (610738) | more than 2 years ago | (#37292806)

That corporations would be a little less eager to tempt Anonymous.

They Yanked an iPad app too (1)

vmxeo (173325) | more than 2 years ago | (#37292850)

A similar story [ilounge.com] made the rounds last April. CBS claimed copyright infringement on the "DiagnosticPADD" app for the iPad. Specifically, CBS claimed

“the Application uses the ‘PADD’ trademark and the interface is substantially similar to CBSS’ copyrighted LCARS interface. Your use of the Series’ Properties improperly trades on the goodwill and reputation of CBSS and the Series and is likely to cause confusion among consumers that the Application is affiliated with or licensed by CBSS and/or the Series. CBSS has concluded that such use constitutes trademark infringement, dilution, passing off and misappropriation under the Lanham Act and applicable state laws, as well as copyright infringement under applicable U.S. copyright law and counterpart laws around the world.”

What's confusing to me is they seem to flip back and forth between copyright and trademark infringement. I'm not sure how either would apply here anyway.

Re:They Yanked an iPad app too (1)

One Louder (595430) | more than 2 years ago | (#37293176)

Unless they've actually filed for a trademark on this stuff, then it's actually more an issue of "trade dress" - ie being "confusingly similar". I really can't see how they can argue that there's any copyright violation.

Re:They Yanked an iPad app too (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37293206)

"goodwill", eh? They are pissing that away with obnoxiousness like this.

Clone the repository (1)

markkezner (1209776) | more than 2 years ago | (#37292862)

This command will clone the svn repository into a new git repository, preserving history.

Warning: It will take a few minutes. Also, if your slashdot preferences add "[googlecode.com]" to the url, remove it.

git svn clone -s http://moonblink.googlecode.com/svn/ [googlecode.com] moonblink-read-only

So what? (1)

MichaelSmith (789609) | more than 2 years ago | (#37292870)

The author can put it on my app store if they want.

wow (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37292874)

I didn't even know this awesome app existed. Dear CBS, thanks for bringing this to my attention... installing now...

Good ol' promotion of innovation (1)

LordLucless (582312) | more than 2 years ago | (#37292878)

That's why we let a fictional, non-functional application veto the production of an actual, useful product. Although, looking at America's industry and economics, it does seem that they value fiction over reality.

Re:Good ol' promotion of innovation (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37293324)

Star Trek IS an actual product, one with billions in sales.

This product derived value from said existing product, otherwise it wouldn't have existed in the form it did.

Sorry, but like it or not, fiction IS a product, which people do pay considerable sums to have.

DCMA qualifications (1)

alphatel (1450715) | more than 2 years ago | (#37292886)

They sent the link from an apple store app as their right to license of an image? Something smells less legal. If Google will react to such a weak request you can probably send them anything you want and get any app taken down.

get it while it's hot (1)

eXFeLoN (954179) | more than 2 years ago | (#37292898)

http://download.cnet.com/Tricorder-for-Android/3000-20432_4-75025147.html [cnet.com] still available here. i'm sure that will not be true for long. Just installed it and it is a fun little app that looks great on my tablet. I'll be sure to spread the app itself around for as long as I can remember.

Re:get it while it's hot (1)

bratwiz (635601) | more than 2 years ago | (#37292948)

You know, all you folks posting links to the software and doing the CBS lawyers a favor by pointing out who to send the next takedown letters to.

*sighs* (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37292946)

Yes, a fan supported app is a good thing. It is securing their faith and loyalty to said brand owned by CBS thus leading to possible future money for them for no additional effort.

However, this line "I think it is a shame that CBS thinks it needs to kill a free and open source project giving a add-less app" irks me from the summary. Because it is open source, free and not throwing up advertisements means this project is holy and untouchable? This is near Apple level kool-aid drinking here.

That is complete baloney (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37292952)

I was lamenting a few months ago that it didn't look *enough* like a true LCARS interface.

The tricorder app:
-Doesn't have any artwork taken from any star trek franchise
-Doesn't even use the true tricorder sound, since he made a completely original one

It is totally dissimilar to anything ever seen on star trek.

What the author should do is remove the artwork, and then just make a skin for it, and have that be a separate install.

F*ck CBS (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37292970)

I suggest everyone reading this downloads the Tricorder_5_9.apk wherever they can still find it online, and put twitter, facebook, and blog links to the file. I also suggest mass sharing of this program through torrent. It's time to show patent lawyers and the judges who are owned by them that we can fight back.

Now if I could just find at least 1 download location...
http://www.freewarelovers.com/android/download/temp/1289451086_Tricorder_5.9.apk

Who to email at CBS? (1)

Simulant (528590) | more than 2 years ago | (#37292984)

I can only find what look like very specific feedback forms.

Thanks CBS! (2)

Radak (126696) | more than 2 years ago | (#37292986)

I hadn't heard of this app before. Thanks to CBS giving it some free publicity, I have now, and found the apk on another site.

Pretty cool app. Thank you CBS and your lawyers for cluing me to it.

Hope CBS does not go after the Nokia IT/MID theme (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37293056)

was gonna post the link, but I don't want to make it too easy for the trolls - use the usual search techniques...

LCARS is the problem (4, Informative)

steveha (103154) | more than 2 years ago | (#37293078)

The summary includes a link to the wiki article about it being killed by lawyers. This in turn includes the text of the DMCA takedown notice. Take a look:

lxxxxxxn@cbs.com to support-portal@google.com
Reply - More info Aug 23
Options

AutoDetectedBrowser: Internet Explorer 7
AutoDetectedOS: Windows XP
IIILanguage: en
IssueType: lr_dmca
Language: en
agree1: checked
agree: checked
android_app_developer_1: Moonblink
android_app_name_1: Tricorder
android_app_url_1: https://market.android.com/details?id=org.hermit.tricorder [android.com]
companyname: CBS
country_residence: US
description_of_copyrighted_work: LCARS graphical user interface
dmca_signature: Lxxxxxxn
dmca_signature_date_day: 23
dmca_signature_date_month: 8
dmca_signature_date_year: 2011
full_name: Lxxxxxxn
hidden_product: androidmarket
location_of_copyrighted_work: LCARS graphical user interface, an example of which can be viewed at the URL below: http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/star-trek-padd/id446277240?mt=8 [apple.com] represented_copyright_holder: CBS Studios Inc.

Now, I used to have an app on my Palm PDA that pretended to be a tricorder but didn't actually do anything (other than make some chirp noises and display various jokes). That's not what this is; this "tricorder" app displays the outputs from various sensors on an Android phone. You can get a magnetic compass, sound data from the microphone, GPS data, etc. The DMCA takedown isn't about this functionality, but just about the LCARS interface.

The solution is obvious: reskin the app, using an Android sort of theme, and for extra safety change the name. The result shouldn't bother CBS anymore.

I don't even really like LCARS much.

P.S. I presume that CBS will go after the people who install LCARS themes on their desktops. What a waste of time.

steveha

Re:LCARS is the problem (2)

steveha (103154) | more than 2 years ago | (#37293092)

Oh, and if you aren't geeky enough to already know what this "LCARS" thing is:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/LCARS [wikipedia.org]

steveha

Why kill the app? (1)

Commontwist (2452418) | more than 2 years ago | (#37293108)

Sure, if CBS lawyers are suddenly saying 'Mine! Mine! Mine!' then first see if they actually DO own it. Would NOT be the first time DMCA has been abused by persons who do not own the stuff they're complaining about. If they do, or close enough that you can't afford to buy enough justice to protest, then simply redesign the interface. The options in the app seem quite cool and it would be interesting to see what would be possible by linking two 'tricorders' together for triangulation of local sensor readings. LOL. Personally, I'd also come up with something other than 'tricorder' just to forestall potential other crud from these guys. I really hate the 'sue or lose it' legal stuff that brings this knee jerk reaction about. DMCA is also a mess that needs serious fixing.

Contract violation? (3, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37293200)

According to this http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tricorder In Gene Roddenberry contract if any of the technology in star trek gets invented they can use the name free of charge. Is it that now he is gone they will ignore that part of there original contract?

Mirror for apk? (1)

iONiUM (530420) | more than 2 years ago | (#37293360)

Does anyone know where a mirror is for the .apk? This article made me find out about this app, and now I want it, but I can't find the .apk anywhere.

Thanks!

Thank God (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37293382)

...The Sonic Screwdriver app is still on the market. Trekkies Whovians.

add-less (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37293408)

"Ad" is short for "Advertisement" so there is no extra 'd' when abbreviating it. Sorry I don't have any witty joke to add here. I'm not going to feign indignation either... although I briefly considered going that route.

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