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Apple Offers "Family License" for Jaguar

pudge posted more than 11 years ago | from the but-it-will-still-take-me-all-day-to-install-it-on-five-machines dept.

OS X 42

DietFluffy writes "According to this article, Apple Computer will offer a $199 5-user family license for Jaguar (Mac OS X 10.2). The article notes that the family license program depends on an honor system because unlike Microsoft, Apple 'does not put technical barriers in place to prevent people from installing software on more than one machine.'" It's likely that most families would buy only one license anyway, so Apple stands to lose little. Sounds like a smart move to me. (For those keeping score on today's game, that makes it Apple 2, Microsoft 0.)

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42 comments

frist poost (0, Offtopic)

b_pretender (105284) | more than 11 years ago | (#4079325)

First family post after /. website has been acting up all day. Maybe the /. family should invest in a family license to keep at least 5 of their servers running!

Nice... (4, Interesting)

questionlp (58365) | more than 11 years ago | (#4079329)

Putting the whining and moaning about the cost of upgrading to 10.2, it is nice that Apple is providing such a package. At $199, the cost of each upgrade for five machines (be it an iBook, an older iMac, a new iMac, etc.) comes down to around $40 a pop. It is much cheaper than the cost of five upgrades to Windows XP Home Edition, as those go for $99 for the first one and $89 for each additiona license (more info can be found here [microsoft.com] ); add $100 for each license/copy for Windows XP Professional.

Re:Nice... (1)

imperator_mundi (527413) | more than 11 years ago | (#4082308)

The price still interesting even with merely two macs in the housold, and it couldn't be otherwise; how many family owns 5 jaguar-compatible-macs?

Re:Nice... (1)

Fished (574624) | more than 11 years ago | (#4082573)

My family owns three, and maybe a fourth if I ever got around to putting some more memory in my 6400. Okay, so it's not a speed demon, but it will run OS X once you get it to boot.

Re:Nice... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4097706)

Which moderator is on crack by calling this off-topic... how more on topic is this comment? People bemoan Apple for the high upgrade prices but don't see how much it costs for Windows XP.

similar to gobe productive (2, Insightful)

capoccia (312092) | more than 11 years ago | (#4079338)

this license/marketing concept is similar to gobe's family license. they too marketed it as a response to microsoft's draconian anti-piracy measures.

unfortunately gobe is going bankrupt. (on the upside, gobe productive will be gpl'd).

Look, no Dragons! (5, Interesting)

freerangegeek (451133) | more than 11 years ago | (#4079592)

Please make sure to notice, Apple isn't attempting to add security to make anyone 'buy' their family license. Instead they're just giving you the option to be a good citizen and pay for those upgrades.

Lambast Apple all you want for the price of 10.2, but remember you won't suddenly find that your iMac stopped working because somebody thinks you've stolen the license.

I really want to see how many people will avail themselves of this option. Perhaps the MPAA and RIAA will sit up and notice if people demonstrate that they're willing to pay for reasonable licenses.

Re:Look, no Dragons! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4079714)

I would buy such a (family) license. I respect Apple's work, and want them to be able to continue developing excellent products.

It's great that Apple recognizes and supports multi-Mac households.

Re:Look, no Dragons! (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4079939)

Lambast Apple all you want for the price of 10.2, but remember you won't suddenly find that your iMac stopped working because somebody thinks you've stolen the license.

I work at Apple, and I can tell you that if management decided to try to pull that kind of shit, engineering would make quite sure that it was trivial to defeat.

wow, 2-0 Apple..... (0, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4079630)

With big wins like this, can we hope to see an increase of their market share beyond 2.3% [websidestory.com] ?

Re:wow, 2-0 Apple..... (5, Funny)

foobar104 (206452) | more than 11 years ago | (#4080603)

God, I hope not.

Haven't you ever thought about the irony of Microsoft's market position? They're the #1 operating system in the world, in number of units, but their software is almost universally terrible. In what kind of world does that make sense?

Then I came up with my own hypothesis: popular software tends to suck. Think about it. The most popular software products in the world-- like, say, Windows-- are always awful pieces of work. There's clearly a connection here. I haven't identified the exact mechanism yet; maybe it has something to do with the products growing too fast or something. But the connection is undeniable!

If Mac OS X ever grows beyond a few million users, it'll start to suck. Keep the user base small! Keep Macs expensive! Keep out the riff-raff!

(HHOS)

Re:wow, 2-0 Apple..... (2)

droleary (47999) | more than 11 years ago | (#4080805)

Then I came up with my own hypothesis: popular software tends to suck.

It's not a recent development, or unique to software, either:

Whenever you find you are on the side of the majority, it is time to pause -- Mark Twain

The skewed M$ world-view (3, Interesting)

Slur (61510) | more than 11 years ago | (#4080838)

Microsoft has gone off the deep end with their paranoiac approach to the world of PC owners and enthusiasts. Each perceived threat is treated as if it was a terrorist in the nursery, leading the world's dominant OS vendor to hurl lawyers, lobbyists, licenses, FUD, anti-theft code, and the BSA at everyone and his cousin. What a waste of their "freedom to innovate." It's no wonder so many major tech companies are taking the plunge - before it's too late! - and deploying Linux all over their enterprises.

I can tell you exactly why Microsoft's crap OS has dominated for so long. Because there wasn't anything of demonstrably better value or quality to challenge them. For my part I never liked Windows and vehemently stuck with Mac OS all the way from System 7.5 through 9.1. Despite the near-constant crashing (moderated only by vigilant system maintenance) and antiquated underpinnings of classic Mac OS I nevertheless revered it for its overall simplicity. But my Mac OS X experience has made me realize just how bad the old days really were. I can now understand why Apple didn't - and couldn't - launch a serious "switch" campaign until now.

But a few weeks ago I gave a PC-owning buddy of mine his first tour of Mac OS X. His response: "God, I'm so sick of the crappiness of Windows! I've got to kick it to the curb - and soon." Prior to this we had spent the weekend with his PC running Win2K dealing with one BSOD after another after another.

As Mac OS X and Linux gain speed, robustness, and maturity, and Windows gets longer in the tooth the irony will only get thicker. But to me it seems a relatively new phenomenon, only beginning to gain momentum right here and now.

Behold the Quickening!

Re:The skewed M$ world-view (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4080918)

As Mac OS X and Linux gain speed, robustness, and maturity...

You do Mac OS X a serious disservice by lumping it in with that piece of shit Linux. I will not throw my support behind any operating system that makes major changes to the virtual memory subsystem and releases them as "dot dot" revisions. When people started talking about incompatibilities between kernel 2.4.16 and 2.4.17 (or what the hell ever), that's when I finally gave up on Linux.

With Mac OS X, particular in version 10.2, there's simply no need for Linux any more.

Re:The skewed M$ world-view (1)

dbrutus (71639) | more than 11 years ago | (#4082340)

Linux will need to be around as long as there's so much x86 hardware floating around. The FreeBSD folk simply aren't doing a very good job of snagging mindshare.

Re:wow, 2-0 Apple..... (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4081383)

A competitive software company won't waste money making software that's any better than customers demand. MacOS9 on 21st century hardware is a pathetically brittle anachronism but users don't know any better.

And then there's strategic incompatibility, making migration very risk if not impossible, and it's clear that short-term self-interest plus a bit of ignorance has the market regularly choosing something barely usable and rarely building the will to change, while the vendor saves money by shipping crap with impunity.

Nice move by Apple, but... (5, Interesting)

sebi (152185) | more than 11 years ago | (#4079764)

It's a nice thing to do, but only something that Apple can really afford to pull of (what with the honor system and all). The five machines that Jaguar will be installed on under this license have allready brought money to Apple. I'm sure that they don't like people to pirate their OS, but they surely aren't going to lose sleep if somebody does it. They are, after all, a hardware company. They can "risk" to play nice and improve their image. After all people are going to be buying Apples again in the future - especially if they feel like the company treats them with respect.

Re:Nice move by Apple, but... (3, Funny)

freerangegeek (451133) | more than 11 years ago | (#4080005)

That's it! Apple can afford to! Apple is rich!

Microsoft, on the other hand, with their $40 Billion in the bank, certainly isn't in any economic position to back off on their draconian licensing. I mean, how many gold plated ivory back scratchers would those extra 3 licenses/home cost them. :)

Re:Nice move by Apple, but... (3, Informative)

SandSpider (60727) | more than 11 years ago | (#4080026)

The five machines that Jaguar will be installed on under this license have allready brought money to Apple. I'm sure that they don't like people to pirate their OS, but they surely aren't going to lose sleep if somebody does it. They are, after all, a hardware company.
That's an interesting theory, but economically it only works if developing an Operating System is essentially free. After all, the machines could be years old, so their money is already banked. In order to pay for the OS development, people have to pay for the OS.

Granted, Apple has less risk than Microsoft because Apple sells something other than the Operating System. But it's analogous to saying that Microsoft shouldn't worry about people pirating Office because they've already had to pay for a copy of Windows. Different departments have different budgets and different sources of revenue.

=Brian

Re:Nice move by Apple, but... (4, Insightful)

sebi (152185) | more than 11 years ago | (#4080342)

Developing the OS is anything but free. Apple will never recoup the development costs for Jaguar through revenues from boxed copies. They are a hardware company and only concerned about their bottom line. Departments and budgets are a tool for controlling but at the end of a quarter the performance of the whole company has to be satisfying.

People might install Jaguar on old machines, but IIRC the oldest machines officially supported by it where officially EOLd about 2,5 to 3 years ago. If you want to compare Apple's situation to MS you could say that they don't care about people pirating Windows as long as they pay for Office -- and essentially this statement used to be true. For MS Office is (or used to be) where the money is. For Apple it's hardware. In my opinion Apple has its priorities right: They go after companies that enable the theft of software (Other World Computing had a programm that allowed to use third party DVD burners with iDVD - but iDVD is payed for when you get a Superdrive)and they go after websites that publish instructions how to turn the free 10.1 upgrade CD into a full installer. But they don't lock their users down with DRM schemes (iPod - Don't steal music) and they don't make it hard to install legit copies of their OS on multiple machines. I did not pay for 10.1. I got it from a friend who got the installer with a new machine. I will not buy Jaguar for my tower. I will instead install the version from the iBook that I'm about to buy. Both times I was /will be wrong. But Apple will probably not prosecute me or even make me feel like a criminal. They get my money one way or the other and that is the important thing for them. And they will continue to get money from me as long as they will make computers and give me the feeling of being a respected by them. Plus the money that I don't spend on a legit copy of Jaguar for my tower will sooner or later show up as a Mac sale for Adobe -- something that is good for Apple as well.

Re:Nice move by Apple, but... (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4081335)

OSX doesn't support old machines. In fact, they promised it would and then changed their mind to trick their most loyal customers (developers, who really should have known better than to trust Apple) into upgrading twice.

Your Office piracy argument is almost plausible except that Windows only costs half as much and many people who copy Office also copy Windows (which you can't do to hardware).

not a plus (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4079935)

It's likely that most families would buy only one license anyway, so Apple stands to lose little. Sounds like a smart move to me

Right, except this probably means that there will be more anti-copying mechanisms and perhaps a network-aware multiple copies checker. As you said, most families only buy one copy so unless Apple forces them they wouldn't buy the multiple license scheme. Given the fact that Apple likes to put loyal customers into corners focusing on scoring more money on the OS sounds like something they'd do. It is well within their bounds to this, though, so I'm not too bothered by it. I wouldn't score this as a plus, just another way to squeeze out more money from their limited customer base.

Weren't you paying attention? (5, Informative)

jcr (53032) | more than 11 years ago | (#4079959)

Right, except this probably means that there will be more anti-copying mechanisms and perhaps a network-aware multiple copies checker.

From the article:

The family license program, to some degree, depends on the honor system. Although legally Mac owners are required to purchase a copy of the operating system for each Mac they own, Apple, unlike Microsoft, does not put technical barriers in place to prevent people from installing software on more than one machine.


Given the fact that Apple likes to put loyal customers into corners focusing on scoring more money on the OS sounds like something they'd do.

Guess again.

-jcr

Re:Weren't you paying attention? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4085941)

Given the fact that Apple likes to put loyal customers into corners focusing on scoring more money on the OS sounds like something they'd do.

Guess again.

So will this last as long as iTools or will it be more like support for OS X on early G3 Macs?

Re:Weren't you paying attention? (2)

MoneyT (548795) | more than 11 years ago | (#4087941)

Dude, have you looked at what Apple gives you with the new .mac? You get your email (easy and free most places) you get anti-virus software (anywares from $30 - $90), you get 100 MB of web storage (I dare you to find that for free) and anyone who use iTools knows that you get plenty of software with your webspace too. I'd say $90 a year isn't so steep a price to be asking. Could they use a free "light" version, sure they could, but I don't personaly feel ripped off by .mac

As for the lack of support for early G3's, GET THE FUCK OVER IT! The early G3s that were unsupported were over 3 years old by the time OS X became "official". And you know what, after 3 years, it's time to start looking into other computers. Apple didn't force you to buy OS X, they didn't force you to buy a new computer. Hell they didn't even cripple OS X so that it couldn't run on the old G3s. They just said "we're not going to support it, we're leaving it up to the open source community". What's so fricken wrong with that? Apple needed sales, they gave you a reason to buy, but they didn't force you. Deal with it.

Re:Weren't you paying attention? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4088153)

First, Apple keeps trying to bundle shit that I don't want. I want email - that's it. That's the sum total of my use for iTools. .Mac is a good value if you want to eat all the shit Jobs is serving for dinner but otherwise you're paying $15 for a plateful of crap and that dinner mint at the end, which is all you really wanted.
I'm buying a new PowerMac and again Apple has stupid bundling. You *must* buy a DVD playing drive - at least a $100 more than a CD-RW drive would cost. If you buy a second drive that has to play DVDs, too. WTF? I don't
need that functionality and stocking and putting in a CD-RW or a CD-ROM drive isn't hard. So why does Apple insist on making me buy crap I don't want to get the stuff I do want? Aren't their prices high enough without forcing this stuff on their customers?

Apple's bundling is great if you want it but when you don't it sure as hell feels like a ripoff, since you can't go anywhere else. So I've dedicated myself to giving them as little money as possible. I've also dedicated myself to making certain that I'm writing my applications in a portable manner so I can move to Linux. The window managers may suck a little but at least you're free to do what you want. You can buy whatever hardware you want - technically replacing the SuperDrive with a CD-RW drive voids the warranty on a PowerMac - from who you want - Apple restricts some resellers from selling to new customers even though they are indeed "Apple Certified Resellers". Plus, Linux developers don't have to pay hundreds of dollars for early access to APIs and they're not restricted from speaking about APIs or features in public or amongst each other in mailing lists. For me to discuss Jaguar's APIs I would have to personally know other OS X developers who have the same access as me and privately email them or discuss by phone or face to face. Newsgroups, mailing lists (including Apple's own lists) and any tool of the information age which could allow someone who hasn't signed an NDA with Apple is verboten. You can imagine how good I feel paying hundreds of dollars for undocumented APIs which I can't discuss with anyone because Apple has truly stupid rules and such a small marketshare that bumping into other professional-level OS X developers hasn't happened yet to me. Basically the only thing prevented by the NDA is useful discussion which would aid in the development of better software for OS X, while the rumors and the details of stupid shit like iCal and other upcoming bundled crap I don't care about are made public on numerous websites and newsgroups. That's a big win in Apple's eyes, apparently. Frankly, I'm getting tired of Apple's attitude even if OS X is the best operating system I've used.

Re:Weren't you paying attention? (3, Informative)

MoneyT (548795) | more than 11 years ago | (#4091370)

First, Apple keeps trying to bundle shit that I don't want. I want email - that's it. That's the sum total of my use for iTools. .Mac is a good value if you want to eat all the shit Jobs is serving for dinner but otherwise you're paying $15 for a plateful of crap and that dinner mint at the end, which is all you really wanted.

Might I then recomend operamail.com or submail.net or even yahoomail? If mail is all you care about, then there's plenty of free stuff arround. If it's the @mac.com part that you want, well, I guess you pay a price then. Just like with websites, if the name means nothing to you, there's plenty of free space out there. If you want a domain though, you pay for it. It sucks, but that's life.

I'm buying a new PowerMac and again Apple has stupid bundling. You *must* buy a DVD playing drive - at least a $100 more than a CD-RW drive would cost. If you buy a second drive that has to play DVDs, too. WTF? I don't
need that functionality and stocking and putting in a CD-RW or a CD-ROM drive isn't hard. So why does Apple insist on making me buy crap I don't want to get the stuff I do want? Aren't their prices high enough without forcing this stuff on their customers?


From pricewatch.com:

16x10x32 CD-RW drive. Lowest price $42

8x DVD ROM Lowest price: $38

12x8x32 + 8x DVD-ROM/CD-RW drive. Lowest price: $84

So apple gives you a 16x10x32 + 8x DVD/CD-RW drive, and at worst your paying $42 dollars more than if you bought just the CD RW. Not a bad deal in my book. Seeing as how you know Apple's drives are high quality. But ignore even that fact for a second and consider. What if down the road, you decide you want a DVD drive. So you buy one, stick it in your powermac, and now, you don't have anymore drive bays. They bundle the DVD and the CD-RW because it allows them to get away with 2 drive bays. What else could you want. Who knows, maybe a HD caddy, but the point is, they cover their ass by ensuring you don't have to waste a bay with any other optical media drives. How bout all the poor people who don't even want a burner? Should they be allowed to have a CD ROM only selection? Don't you realize by adding more choices, they raise the price (choices means stocking, stocking means storage, storage means more costs). The bundle makes perfect sense. And when someone hands you a burned DVD with data on it, and all you have is a CD-RW, what will you do then? Complain that apple didn't give you a DVD drive? Think about it.

So I've dedicated myself to giving them as little money as possible.

Good, so on the one hand, bitch about how they don't provide enough options and choices, and then on the other hand, don't give them the money that would allow for choices. Bright move there.

Apple restricts some resellers from selling to new customers even though they are indeed "Apple Certified Resellers".

Where do they do that? Which resellers aren't allowed to sell.

Plus, Linux developers don't have to pay hundreds of dollars for early access to APIs

For the public APIs and the APIs which are opensourse, you don't have to pay for the jaguar ones either. Even some of the private ones, you don't have to pay, the basic ADC membership is free. You do know that right?

For me to discuss Jaguar's APIs I would have to personally know other OS X developers who have the same access as me and privately email them or discuss by phone or face to face. Newsgroups, mailing lists (including Apple's own lists) and any tool of the information age which could allow someone who hasn't signed an NDA with Apple is verboten.

It's the same with any company. If you have acess to their closed source, you can't give that access to the public. It's not underhanded schemes, it's business. If you want to discuss freely, then discuss the opensourced APIs. And no one is forcing you to pay, you choose to do so of your own free will.

I see plenty of good software being developed for OS X. The reason I think you're pissed is because, you're not a student, you're not an educator, you're not a business, you're a hobbyist who doesn't have the money to pay for his access to the closed information, so you're pissed and you want it free. So sad, too bad. It's not good business to opensource your big leverage over the competition. When they can hold you to a NDA, they can reclaim a loss if you decide to leak info. That's why they hold you to and NDA, that's why you pay money. If you don't like it, develop the opensource portions and leave the closed source to the people at Apple and the people willing to pay.

Re:not a plus (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4079975)

Read the article! "Apple, unlike Microsoft, does not put technical barriers in place to prevent people from installing software on more than one machine." I don't think that's going to change. This offer is great for anyone with more than one Mac system that doesn't want to take the "casual piracy" route.

This does, in fact, appear to be "The Right Thing" (1)

ellem (147712) | more than 11 years ago | (#4079989)

However, he said that many Mac owners want their installations to be legal, but they're not willing to pay full price for each copy of the operating system.

"This is a great way to allow honest people to remain honest," Bereskin said.


Seems like a decent way to handle this situation, I'm still screwed but whatever.

Why don't you just get a REAL operating system... (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4080007)

...which fosters the creativity of content authors by protecting their work from thieves such as yourselves?

"It's likely that most families would buy only one license anyway..." So you're saying that Mac users are thieves?

Obviously you are because of your opposition to digital rights management and Microsoft's unobtrusive anti-piracy measures.

Re:Why don't you just get a REAL operating system. (2)

foobar104 (206452) | more than 11 years ago | (#4080642)

You know, whoever posts this is a low-down, dirty troll, but at least he/she/whatever is creative. I'd rather see this kind of trolling than the "BSD is dying" and "frost piss" crapflooding.

Besides, this poster provides lots of laughs. "fosters the creativity of content authors," indeed. What content authors actually use Windows, anyway? Apple may own 2% of the market, but everybody knows they own the creative industries.

Maybe a VERY smart move (2, Interesting)

mrmoa (588841) | more than 11 years ago | (#4080024)

Apple might be trying to kill a small covey of birds with one stone. Not all of these birds are necessarily good, though.

  • First, they can pump up the OS X installed base number by 5 with every '5 pack' they sell -- even if the OS gets installed on only 2 or 3 machines.
  • Second, they lower the price of Jaguar to their most loyal consumer users - those who have multiple Macs at home. (Noting that Apple already providing a lower cost upgrade path for corporate customers.)
  • Third, they have at least a paper answer for the critics who say that the upgrade costs too much.
  • Fourth, they set the stage for future 'draconian activation' schemes.

Here's something Microsoft can rip off (4, Insightful)

sg3000 (87992) | more than 11 years ago | (#4080339)

This is a plan that Microsoft can rip off with impunity.

There are two ways to deal with people who are loose with their software licenses.

1. Clamp down hard to make sure they can only install the software once on a single piece of hardware. Systematically piss off your entire user base.

2. Pragmatically realize that users are going to install their software on every machine in their house. Therefore, change your licensing to make such a practice legal. Charge a reasonable amount to do this.

Note: Item 1 will only work if you are willing to illegally abuse your monopoly.

Cheers to Apple. $199 for 5 home licenses is great because the majority of Mac users I know have two or three Macs in their house and this allows them to "get legal" without breaking the bank.

Wha? (3, Troll)

extrasolar (28341) | more than 11 years ago | (#4080408)

Why is installing software on more than one computers a bad thing?

Re:Wha? (1)

dunderwo (172863) | more than 11 years ago | (#4080549)

Why is installing software on more than one computers a bad thing?

It's not, unless you fail to compensate the large group of people who spent exorbitant amounts of time and money developing said software.

Re:Wha? (2)

extrasolar (28341) | more than 11 years ago | (#4086877)

That's not much of an argument, I'm afraid. Not everyone gets rewarded for commiting a lot resources to a project. And your argument certainly doesn't tell me how much compensation they should get from their project.

Luckily, foobar makes a better argument for your position.

Re:Wha? (4, Insightful)

foobar104 (206452) | more than 11 years ago | (#4080692)

Why is installing software on more than one computers a bad thing?

Two reasons: principle, and economics.

On the one hand, Apple asks you to buy one copy of the software per computer (except in the case of this 5-pack, of course). If you're not willing to comply with that request, then you should not use the software at all. Using it on two computers without paying for two copies is like taking two newspapers from the machine after putting in only one quarter: it's stealing.

On the other hand, Apple spends a fortune developing this software, but sells it at a much lower price because they're expecting to sell a certain number of copies. That number is based on how many Macs are out there now, and what fraction of the owners will want to use the new software. See, they're counting Macs, not people or families or little groups of warezing teens. If they sell too few copies of OS X 10.2, they won't make their money back, and there won't be a Mac OS X 10.3. So using two copies when you only pay for one indirectly deprives you of future products that you'd like to have.

And, of course, there's the best reason of all: because your momma told you so, idiot.

Re:Wha? (2)

extrasolar (28341) | more than 11 years ago | (#4087095)

Hello, foobar. You make a good case and I have changed my mind about the matter, except in the cases when Apple uses its control of the software against the will of the customer.

I've seen some of your replies--sorry about calling you a troll.

Re:Wha? (3, Interesting)

foobar104 (206452) | more than 11 years ago | (#4087312)

That was awfully nice of you to say.

In the interest of reasoned debate, I want to challenge you on something. Feel free to ignore me; I'm just striking up a conversation.

You say-- or, more accurately, imply-- that you don't approve of Apple's using its control of the software against the will of the customer. I'm wondering if you really mean that in absolute terms, or if you're just generalizing. Because clearly there are cases in which the will of the customer can be contrary to Apple's best interest. For example, it might be the will of the customer to make copies of Jaguar CDs and sell them for $10 each, but that would clearly be an activity of which Apple would not approve, and which Apple would try very hard to stop.

Would you care to elaborate on what you meant by "uses its control of the software against the will of the customer?"

Re:Wha? (2)

extrasolar (28341) | more than 11 years ago | (#4087782)

Well, first your example is flawed in that people are allowed to make backup copies of software by fair use rights as I understand it.

But one example is spyware. Software should not send private information of the user across the internet nor leave backdoors in security software. This is a more extreme example of the "obviously not right" category.

Another, more debatable, example is advertising in software restricted under copyright. Since the user isn't allow to edit out this functionality, it is wrong for the developer to force this feature onto him.

The obvious response is for the user to choose another product. In the spyware case, the user may not even be aware of this feature of the software. In the second case, there may be any variety of reasons the user can't switch (an example given below).

It is my belief that by controlling the functionality of the software gives developers an indirect power over the user. A developer may decide to only allow interoperability with certain file formats and exclude others. Another developer may create a converter from that format to another, but then the former developer may increase the complexity of the file format. The two developers would continue to compete in this---all beyond the will of the user.

I honestly didn't mean to imply that Apple does controll the software against the will of the user. I simply mean to say that the opportunity exists, in even indirect forms.

Apple is a hardware company. (1)

catwh0re (540371) | more than 11 years ago | (#4080788)

Apple makes all their money in hardware, it's to their advantage that their software is as appealing as possible to encourage more hardware purchase.

Unlike microsoft on the other hand, where a bug-filled windows installation will result in a possible future upgrade, and where an operating system that gets slower over time(despite not even installing anything) will result in hardware sales and thus another microsoft purchase (usually bundled).

For these reasons you get working almost faultless software from Apple, and a potential nightmare with Microsoft.

Woo Hoo! (1)

MrChuck (14227) | more than 11 years ago | (#4085848)

So the His laptop, the Hers laptop,
the G3 desktop machine (the one running NetBSD, right now).

That's 3.

But I still can't upgrade the 4 NeXT's to this NeXTStep 5.6 release they call Jaguar.

Bastards.

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