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Apple Updates SuperDrive Firmware

pudge posted more than 11 years ago | from the mmmmm-ejecting-CDs dept.

Media (Apple) 53

mmarlett writes "(Potentially) In your software update panel: 'The Power Mac G4 SuperDrive Firmware Update installs new firmware on the SuperDrive which addresses an incompatibility with 4x DVD-R and 2x DVD-RW media, and the 2x SuperDrive in the Power Mac G4. You must perform this update if you intend to use 4x DVD-R or 2x DVD-RW media in your Power Mac G4. This update also enables you to eject audio CDs that are copy-protected or have mastering errors. This update is required only for the Power Mac G4 (Digital Audio), the Power Mac G4 (Quicksilver) and the Power Mac G4 (Quicksilver 2002) with an internal Apple SuperDrive.'"

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53 comments

Obviously.. (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4624322)

Obviously another fix to prevent the new machines from writing DVDs - something the DMCA doesn't want you to do

Re:Obviously.. (2)

Draoi (99421) | more than 11 years ago | (#4624375)

What's the DMCA got to do with burning DVDs on a Mac??

Sorry, I completely missed your point. Did you mean the MPAA?

That should be rephrased: (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4624329)

"eject audio CDs that are copy-protected or have mastering errors" should be "eject audio CDs that are copy-protected or have other mastering errors"

Copy protection (5, Funny)

Draoi (99421) | more than 11 years ago | (#4624347)

This update also enables you to eject audio CDs that are copy-protected or have mastering errors.

A bit redundant, that last part .... ;-)

DRM (0, Flamebait)

mary_will_grow (466638) | more than 11 years ago | (#4624436)

I cant wait for someone to examine that patch a little more closely. Its probably sneaking on some DRM stuff, huh? And can you turn off the "eject copyrighted CD" feature?

We know how cozy [com.com] apple is with the DMCA.

Re:DRM (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4624556)

Why would you remove your ability to eject a broken disc when you want?

Re:DRM (5, Informative)

Draoi (99421) | more than 11 years ago | (#4624557)

Copy-protected (read 'broken') CDs had a reputation for getting stuck in Mac CD-ROM drives. Check out this [macworld.com] old story for more detail. Why would you want to turn this off?

As for DRM - I'll believe it when I see it ....

Um, no (5, Informative)

daveschroeder (516195) | more than 11 years ago | (#4624565)

No, it's not "sneaking" anything in. This is Apple's packaged version of Pioneer's firmware update fixing the now-well-known issue with not properly handling high speed media.

And uh, it ejects copyrighted CDs because it can't recognize them, since they don't conform to the Red Book Audio CD specification, not because it's trying to prevent you from using them. In fact, your premise is laughable, since if Apple really was in bed with the DRM crowd as you seem to suggest by your innane statement, then Apple WOULD support copy protected CDs, effectively furthering the potential for marketplace acceptance. By NOT recognizing copy protected CDs, it's actually doing the anti-DRM crowd a great service by refusing to bend over to support these "CDs".

And finally, Apple isn't "cozy" with the DMCA at all. It was the quickest path to get a vendor from illegally distributing iDVD, which is Apple proprietary material, with OEM CD-RW/DVD-RW drives. Though the DMCA may make us cringe, Apple was 100% in the right:

Reason enough is that there is no legal way for anyone to obtain iDVD without buying a system from Apple that has a SuperDrive in it. iDVD is not free; it is included ONLY with these systems and there is no other way to obtain it. Therefore, this vendor distributing (or encouraging the illegal acquisition of) iDVD at all is already illegal, and Apple had every right to stop it. (There are several other reasons, such as maintaining a single, predictable, known set of hardware that iDVD runs on to keep the best possible user experience for such a critical product, but the fact that no one else can legally distribute iDVD, nor can they ask customers to illegally obtain it, is reason enough.)

Re:Um, no (2)

Draoi (99421) | more than 11 years ago | (#4624603)

It was the quickest path to get a vendor from illegally distributing iDVD, which is Apple proprietary material, with OEM CD-RW/DVD-RW drives.

Not just iDVD, but a patched version [com.com] of it. No wonder Apple were pissed off ....

Re:Um, no (5, Interesting)

Melantha_Bacchae (232402) | more than 11 years ago | (#4624841)

daveschroeder wrote:

> And finally, Apple isn't "cozy" with the DMCA at
> all. It was the quickest path to get a vendor from
> illegally distributing iDVD, which is Apple
> proprietary material, with OEM CD-RW/DVD-RW
> drives. Though the DMCA may make us cringe, Apple
> was 100% in the right:

Even if Apple would have been in the right, I still don't believe Apple even made the threat. All we ever got was the other party's word (no posted copies of actual documents), and that word changed from the original story a few weeks before.

The original story was that Apple had asked *nicely* for him to stop distributing iDVD with his drives that competed with the SuperDrive, and he agreed to keep good relations with Apple. It was weeks later that the story broke again, this time with him claiming Apple had used the DMCA.

This struck me as a smear campaign on his part to blacken Apple's good name. The DMCA is a bad law, and it gives any company fool enough to use it plenty of bad PR.

Apple does not deserve this. Steve Jobs is one of the very few leaders of the computer industry to actually stand up to the RIAA and MPAA for his customers. He is the only one with the courage to do so during his Grammy Awards acceptance speech:

"If you legally acquire music, you need to have the right to manage it on all other devices that you own."
Steve Jobs, 2002 Grammy Awards

Re:Um, no (3, Informative)

dhovis (303725) | more than 11 years ago | (#4625283)

I believe that ultimately the issue was one of patent licencing fees.

Apple has to pay a fee to include an MPEG-2 encoder in iDVD. Apple recoups that fee when you buy a Superdrive equipped Mac. Apple could sell iDVD, but that looks bad when all the other iApps are free. Plus it is a support nightmare for Apple. As far as Apple is concerned, if you want to burn DVDs on a non-Apple DVD-R drive, you can use Toast Titanium, or you can shell out for DVD Studio Pro ($1000).

This applies to Quicktime, too. If you want an MPEG-2 encoder for Quicktime you have to buy it ($20). That cost is above and beyond the Quicktime Pro cost (which includes MP4).

Re:Um, no (4, Informative)

dhovis (303725) | more than 11 years ago | (#4625323)

Whoops, scratch that bit about Quicktime. There is a $20 decoder for MPEG-2 for sale, not an encoder.

Re:Um, no (2)

red5 (51324) | more than 11 years ago | (#4631608)

Apple could sell iDVD, but that looks bad when all the other iApps are free.

Not really you can buy iMovie 2 [apple.com] from them if it didn't come installed on your mac.

Re:Um, no (1)

mbbac (568880) | more than 11 years ago | (#4625579)

Do you know if there is a transcript of his Grammy acceptance speech anywhere? I tried Googling for it with no luck.

Re:Um, no (3, Informative)

Twirlip of the Mists (615030) | more than 11 years ago | (#4627642)

The DMCA is a bad law, and it gives any company fool enough to use it plenty of bad PR.

Not to start a flame war, but the DMCA isn't anywhere near as bad as most Slashdotters make it out to be. I've seen instances here of people saying things would or might be illegal under the DMCA that have nothing to do with that law. I'd suggest everybody-- opponent, proponent, whatever-- take a few minutes out and actually read [copyright.gov] the thing. It's not long. And while you're at it, you can invest a little more time and read [copyright.gov] all of Title 17. It's amazing to me how many people have the wrong idea about what the copyright laws actually say.

Just read the laws before forming an opinion, that's all I suggest.

Re:Um, no (1)

dalassa (204012) | more than 11 years ago | (#4624847)

Er...I can think of plenty of macs with iDVD that don't have superdrives. They just have DVD drives.
But yes, finally being able to eject broken CDs is a good thing.

Um, yes (1)

tm2b (42473) | more than 11 years ago | (#4625350)

No... don't confuse iMovie (for watching DVDs) with iDVD (for creating DVDs). iDVD's installer will refuse to install it unless the Superdrive is present.

You can manually pull the iDVD .dmg files off of the Quicksilver software restore CD-ROMs, but few people bother.

Re:Um, yes (3, Insightful)

EricWright (16803) | more than 11 years ago | (#4625747)

You're both confused. iMovie is for creating movies by offloading clips from your DV (and maybe other formats) Video Cameras. iDVD is for authoring (and burning?) DVDs. DVD Player is what you use to watch a DVD.

Re:Um, yes (2)

dalassa (204012) | more than 11 years ago | (#4626315)

Yeah, you're right. Teach me to post before i've had a shower.

Re:Um, yes (3, Funny)

HiredMan (5546) | more than 11 years ago | (#4626792)

Let me get this straight - you read /. AND you shower? Are you sure?

;)

=tkk

PS Where's that guy with the flamebait .sig: "OSX is Unix for people who bathe regularly." when you need him?

Re:Um, yes (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4627051)

Wow, a lot of early morning confusion going on here. ;-) Just to set the record straight (not that it really matters), Apple included iDVD with every new Mac that could be configured with a SuperDrive. That means if you ordered a QuickSilver with CD-RW (like I did), you still got iDVD with it. And if you bought the Pioneer drive from a third party (like I did), iDVD worked just fine.

I didn't realize at the time that Apple was only paying MPEG2 license fees per SuperDrive they shipped, not per copy of iDVD. I just wanted to save some money by getting the low end QuickSilver, which wasn't available with a SuperDrive BTO option, but now I'm using iDVD illegally! I don't even know who to send my money to in order to get legal. Oh well. ;-)

I don't know what they do these days, but they'd be smart to only ship iDVD with machines that have a factory-installed SuperDrive. Would have saved the headache from that whole fiasco a few months back.

Re:Um, no (1)

mbbac (568880) | more than 11 years ago | (#4625618)

Don't confuse DVD Player with iDVD. iDVD is a consumer oriented DVD authoring application.

Re:Um, no (1)

mary_will_grow (466638) | more than 11 years ago | (#4626781)

I guess you are right regarding the eject-feature.
But as far as apple using the DMCA goes, how can you justify using something so terribly wrong even if it is to do something "right"? Every *use* of the DMCA legitimizes it more and more in the eyes of the court. I at least *think* that once there are all these legal precedents set, by people putting it to use, it will make it that much more difficult to throw out when an unpoisoned judge notes how unconstitutional it is.
Furthermore, I read that the vendor was distributing a PATCH for iDVD that made it possible to burn DVDs on EXTERNAL drives, and not just Apple's INTERNAL DVD burners. If that *is* the case (any maybe you'll be able to answer that) then restricting software in order to leverage hardware sales is NOT GOOD BUSINESS. Even if its legal and makes the most money, guess what, its not GOOD. Its shady, and anyone with a conscience who trys to make a good product to sell at a good price, avoiding silly marketing strategies, will agree. SHADY SHADY SHADY.

Re:Um, no (2)

dhamsaic (410174) | more than 11 years ago | (#4626815)

The company was distributing a patched version of Apple's proprietary software. iDVD is not free; it is included with the price of a SuperDrive from Apple. The license agreement states that it may not be redistributed, and Apple was not receiving royalties for the patched distribution. So yes, that was illegal.

Furthermore, how would you feel if someone was taking your work, modifying it and then selling it? You don't receive any royalties, sure, but more importantly, they are modifying your software. Who knows what kind of problems that could cause? Now something minor gets broken and Apple has to spend thousands of dollars supporting a problem that wasn't introduced by their engineers. Not only that, but now their software looks like a shoddy hack job.

You can't spin it so that Apple was in the wrong - it's just not happening. They were in the right, period, and that's the way it is.

Re:Um, no (0, Flamebait)

mary_will_grow (466638) | more than 11 years ago | (#4627528)

They were "right" you keep saying they were "Right" so they were "Right" to restrict their software so that other manufacturer's DVD burners couldnt be used with Apple's burning software?
They were "RIGHT" to leverage their software to increase their hardware sales? They were "RIGHT" to RESTRICT FUNCTIONALITY of their product to suit their needs? No, they werent. You make as good of a product as you can, for the lowest price you can. Thats the only way to do "GOOD" business. The rest, even if perfectly legal, is SHADY CRAP. Making a product CRAPPIER to make another product sell better does not help the consumers at all!
So, no, you can NOT spin it so that Apple was in the right. They were wrong from the get-go, even though they were doing something totally legal. Its still WRONG. But go ahead and trumpet how they should do whatever makes them the most money because thats the way to run a successful business. And keep trumpetting until the RIAA and Micro$oft lobbies have managed to buy all of your rights out from under you. I'm sure this argument will get you somewhere. You'll be really happy in the world you are helping to create.

Re:Um, no (3, Interesting)

Twirlip of the Mists (615030) | more than 11 years ago | (#4627962)

they were "Right" to restrict their software so that other manufacturer's DVD burners couldnt be used with Apple's burning software?

Yup. Apple created iDVD, so they could choose which DVD players would be supported. Hell, if they'd wanted to, they probably could have done it by individual serial number. It's their software, so they can do whatever they want with it.

You can complain about it, of course, but nobody will pay any attention to you. To Mac owners who bought SuperDrive-equipped machines, iDVD is free. It's not available to anybody else. So you don't have much ground to complain.

They were "RIGHT" to leverage their software to increase their hardware sales?

Sure. Apple's been doing that since 1984. Apple is a hardware company, but the only reason-- well, not the only, but by far the best-- reason anybody buys their hardware is because of the software that runs on it. You can't run OS X on a Toshiba laptop, and you can't run iDVD with a third-party external DVD burner. That's Apple's way of doing business. If you don't like it-- though you'd be in the minority-- you're free to buy somebody else's stuff.

They were "RIGHT" to RESTRICT FUNCTIONALITY of their product to suit their needs?

You kinda lept from A to C without going through B first, here. How is supporting only a limited set of DVD burners restricting functionality? It's no different than when any computer software works with only a limited set of computer hardware.

That said, Apple would have been entirely within their rights to restrict the functionality of iDVD. In fact, in many ways, they have. iDVD is a consumer product, designed to be easy to use but not especially powerful. DVD Studio Pro, on the other hand, is designed to be more complex, but a lot more powerful. iDVD could, in theory, do everything that DVD Studio Pro does. But Apple decided to deliberately restrict the functionality of iDVD to keep it simple. So yeah, if this had been a restricting of functionality, Apple would have totally been in the right to do it.

You make as good of a product as you can, for the lowest price you can.

On what planet? On this one, you make a product that's as good as it has to be, for as much as people are willing to pay. That's how you stay in business. Apple has demonstrated repeatedly that their standards are higher than a lot of other software companies'; even Apple's free software is better than most comparable commercial products in the Windows world. But that doesn't mean Apple is running a soup kitchen. It's a business, not a charity.

Making a product CRAPPIER to make another product sell better does not help the consumers at all!

Better bring Mercedes to task, then. They sell the crappy E-class, just so people who don't want a crappy car will buy the S-class. For that matter, Boeing is really on my shitlist, too. They sell the crappy 737 just to boost sales of the 747 and 777. And what's with IBM selling all of those crappy Intel-based servers? They should be selling mainframes for $20 each with lifetime warranties! This process of selling a crappy product for less money-- or, in the case of iDVD, even giving it away-- has got to stop!

And keep trumpetting until the RIAA and Micro$oft lobbies have managed to buy all of your rights out from under you.

Okay, you've officially dropped off the deep end here. I kinda regret spending this time responding to your other points, because it's only now, when I see the last couple of lines of your message, that I realize you're kind of an idiot.

Oh, well. Maybe somebody else will read and be enlightened.

Re:Um, no (1)

mary_will_grow (466638) | more than 11 years ago | (#4632269)

Better bring Mercedes to task, then. They sell the crappy E-class, just so people who don't want a crappy car will buy the S-class. For that matter, Boeing is really on my shitlist, too. They sell the crappy 737 just to boost sales of the 747 and 777. And what's with IBM selling all of those crappy Intel-based servers? They should be selling mainframes for $20 each with lifetime warranties! This process of selling a crappy product for less money-- or, in the case of iDVD, even giving it away-- has got to stop!

Heh. Everything you mentioned is _entirely_ different. Mercedes doesnt make a low class vehicle by taking an already manufactured high class vehicle and hacking parts off of it with a crow bar. They make a low class vehicle by putting less MONEY into it, so they are able to SELL IT CHEAP, while keeping their profit margin. Dont you see the _huge_ difference between the two? The iDVD program was restricted in order to leverage sales of their internal DVD burners. They didnt SAVE ANY MONEY by NOT DEVELOPING THAT PART OF THE PROGRAM, because the patch to allow external DVD burners took one person 3 days to write. So it is entirely ARTIFICIAL. See this is the problem with America, everyone thinks that the most profitable approach is "Right" or "Justified" and a-o-k. Its not. You figure out classes of product you want to see. Price A, B, and C. And you develop the best product you can that you can profit by selling @ price A. and then you do it for price B. and then you do it for price C. Thats what all those manufacturers do that you mentioned. Apple's "Stripped down iDVD" was a totally artificial marketing scheme. It'd be like Mercedes making an econo class by taking a luxury sedan and plugging 4 cylinders shut, and covering the leather with vinyl. Except that they CANT do that, because it wouldnt be cost effective. Get it?
Thanks for the "enlightened" response. Yeah, and I'm totally off the deep end to think that corporate lobbies are buying our rights away, right? Even if it is an exagerated take on recent events, how dare you stifle that sort of thinking? It is obvious that corporate interests are gaining a stranglehold on our nation's policy makers, why would you want people to associate that idea with someone who has "Dropped off the deep end". What if it really does get *bad* [londontransport.co.uk] and everyone is too afraid to speak up for fear of people like you calling them crazy?
Nice work you should feel good about it.

Re:Um, no (1)

eunos94 (254614) | more than 11 years ago | (#4633747)

So here's a question then. What would your take on Volkswagon be? They manufacture several vehicles off of the same platform to meet different needs. Most of the R&D costs are shared between models. Most of the basic mechanics of the models are all shared. A lot of the assembly is shared between models too. But they sell at different price points and are aimed at different buyers.

Heck, a lot of car companies do this. They build off a standard frame/engine package and then put a body on top that fits the need of that particular market that they are aiming for.

What's wrong with that? That's basically all Apple did. They pooled the r&d (coding), put a different body on top of it and sold it (at zero cost) to a different market.

I'm not sure where this is bad. If anything, it's good because most people would have had to purchase the more expensive version, now some of them can just get a free version that is good enough for their needs. Where's the foul?

Seems to me that Apple sells hardware because of it's great software and non-apple hardware doesn't sell because they haven't made good software for their drives. Again, I fail to see anything wrong. If a company fails to write good or *any* software for their drive, how is that Apple's fault?

Re:Um, no (2)

Twirlip of the Mists (615030) | more than 11 years ago | (#4634218)

The iDVD program was restricted in order to leverage sales of their internal DVD burners.

I think you typed "restricted" when you meant to type "created." Apple wrote iDVD-- or paid to have it written, which is effectively the same thing; I'm not sure if that program was developed internally or not-- so that people would have an easy way of creating DVDs out of their home movies and whatnot. They did this because many people wouldn't have bought Macs with Superdrives otherwise.

They didnt SAVE ANY MONEY by NOT DEVELOPING THAT PART OF THE PROGRAM, because the patch to allow external DVD burners took one person 3 days to write.

They saved three man-days of effort, and a huge amount of QA time. Apple would have had to test the entire iDVD function suite for every external drive they wanted to support. That's a serious investment of time and energy. So yeah, Apple did save money by not writing drivers for third-party drives. But that's not the point. The point is that Apple wrote iDVD specifically for people who have Macs with Superdrives. It's not for people who have Macs with other DVD burners, or people who have Macs without DVD burners, or people who have Commodore 64s with floppy drives.

See this is the problem with America, everyone thinks that the most profitable approach is "Right" or "Justified" and a-o-k.

See, this is the problem with people like you. (Far be it for me to generalize. Your problem cuts across boundaries of race, class, and nationality. Idiocy is color-blind.) You think business in inherently evil just because it creates inequities. Lots of uninformed people hold that opinion, but they're mistaken.

Yeah, and I'm totally off the deep end to think that corporate lobbies are buying our rights away, right? Even if it is an exagerated take on recent events, how dare you stifle that sort of thinking?

I think you typed "stifle" when you meant to type "ignore." And I think you typed "thinking" when you meant to type... I don't know. Something else. Because "thinking" has little to do with the things you're saying here.

Re:Um, no (1)

mary_will_grow (466638) | more than 11 years ago | (#4650305)

Just a word of advice, since you seem to think that corporate interests ARENT attempting to buy our rights away. Read the washington post. And the christian science monitor. Hell, read slashdot. You might be able to pick out a few things.

Re:Um, no (2)

Twirlip of the Mists (615030) | more than 11 years ago | (#4651454)

Yawn. Yet more ranting from a paranoid lunatic. Okay, "mary_will_grow," you win. Business is evil. Businesses are trying to subjugate us and open up a new era of slavery to the corporations. There are no shades of gray here; business is just absolutely immoral and bad. We should all go back to being hunter-gatherers.

You first. I'll be right behind you.

Re:Um, no (1)

mary_will_grow (466638) | more than 11 years ago | (#4652552)

Um, no. Why, when someone questions Corporate America's motives, do people people tend to respond with "WELL THEN LETS GO BACK TO BEING HUNTER/GATHERERS" ? You are right, there ARE shades of grey, and worrying about how Big Business might trample on our rights is not the same as thinking that **Big business is going to enslave us all, it is time for a revolution!!**
It is you who has turned things to Black and White. I agree that I've sounded a little crazy, but so does the News. Didnt want to start a fight, sorry if my take on things bothers you.

P.s. I happened to like this name! At least when I was in college. ;)

Re:Um, no (2)

Twirlip of the Mists (615030) | more than 11 years ago | (#4652816)

Why, when someone questions Corporate America's motives, do people people tend to respond with "WELL THEN LETS GO BACK TO BEING HUNTER/GATHERERS" ?

Because you're advocating an extreme, and unjustifiable, point of view. Rant all you like about how the corporations are trying to conquer the world, but be prepared to listen to the sarcasm and mockery the follows.

I agree that I've sounded a little crazy....

A little crazy? Listen to this: "What if it really does get *bad* and everyone is too afraid to speak up for fear of people like you calling them crazy?" Or how about your assertion that "corporate interests" are "attempting to buy our rights away." The kicker, of course, is this: "Why stick up for big business? It HATES you."

You're suffering from paranoid delusions, mary_will_grow. You really might want to consider seeing a doctor. Thorazine can work wonders.

Re:Um, no (1)

mary_will_grow (466638) | more than 11 years ago | (#4654258)

You're suffering from paranoid delusions, mary_will_grow. You really might want to consider seeing a doctor. Thorazine can work wonders

That was the kicker.
I bet your kids are on ritalen.
My point of view is neither "Extreme" nor "Unjustifiable".

All I am saying is that things are getting a little weird. Our president's major campaign contributer was Kenneth Lay of Enron. W even rode around in the Enron jet to campaign. Later, Kenny was included in a committee to write our nations energy policy. This company Enron was also responsible for the largest corporate swindle in recent history. Doesn't that at least make you CONCERNED? I mean, I'm not saying "Forget it we are doomed, corporate america owns us." I am saying "Hey, things are getting a little weird."
Doesnt it concern you that our Vice-President changed internal policy when he worked in Bush Sr.'s cabinet to allow a private company to obtain a defense contract WITHOUT GOING THROUGH THE BIDDING PROCESS? Then, immediately after leaving his post, took up job as CEO of Halliburton where he himself made millions of dollars in DEFENSE CONTRACTS? And now, with war looming in the middle east, who has the contract to build 3 military bases in the mid east? Halliburton again? Doesnt that at least make you CURIOUS?
So far the only one who has advocated anything EXTREME and UNJUSTIFIABLE is YOU, who is beligerently opposed to ANY DISCUSSION ABOUT CORPORATE AMERICA'S INTERESTS.
Look, maybe theres nothing to worry about, fine. Just dont get mad at people for raising questions.
I'm trying to make peace with you here, I dont know why you can't just drop this attack on people who MIGHT be a little SUSPICIOUS, considering recent events.

Re:Um, no (2)

Twirlip of the Mists (615030) | more than 11 years ago | (#4654437)

Doesn't that at least make you CONCERNED?

Nope. The business of America is business. What Enron did was against the rules, but it's an accounting practice found in virtually every company in America. Enron was used to set an example. Any other company would have served just as well, but they picked Enron. And while it certainly worked-- practices nationwide are being reviewed and revised-- was it really worth it? Enron is gone. Andersen is gone. The pensions of thousands of people are gone. What a horrible price to pay for what was basically a difference of opinion over the interpretation of the ledgers.

If you took the time to educate yourself a bit, I think you'll find that the world is not as scary as you seem to think that it is. Stuff doesn't happen by conspiracy of the oligarchy. Stuff just happens, by accident, by coincidence, by pure dumb luck.

Doesnt that at least make you CURIOUS?

Again, nope. It's not unusual in the slightest. Defense is a private industry. People in that industry should act in their own best interest. If things like this didn't happen, I'd be curious.

YOU, who is beligerently opposed to ANY DISCUSSION ABOUT CORPORATE AMERICA'S INTERESTS.

I'm not opposed to discussion. I'm opposed to senseless rants. Like this one you're having right now. They bore me because they're all vitriol and no facts. Calm down, drop your faulty assumptions, and go do some research. When you have more facts, come talk some more and we'll have a discussion.

Re:Um, no (1)

mary_will_grow (466638) | more than 11 years ago | (#4658432)

Nope. The business of America is business. What Enron did was against the rules, but it's an accounting practice found in virtually every company in America. Enron was used to set an example. Any other company would have served just as well, but they picked Enron. And while it certainly worked-- practices nationwide are being reviewed and revised-- was it really worth it? Enron is gone. Andersen is gone. The pensions of thousands of people are gone. What a horrible price to pay for what was basically a difference of opinion over the interpretation of the ledgers.

I think heres whats different from you and me. The fact that all of those people no longer have their pensions, meanwhile the higher-ups in that company are still rolling in the profits they made through their dishonest business practices, really makes me mad. Maybe if you had family involved in that fiasco, you would be singing a different tune. I dont care about what the law says, I really dont. I care about thousands of people who planned their lives around a pension that some (currently still) rich people managed to screw up for them, in the name of profits.
Your parents were not poor, and neither were you, ever. That's obvious. Take some time to see things from someone elses perspective.
I never said anything about conspiracy. You just happen to think anyone who does not like big business is a conspiracy theorist.

Its funny, you really havent said anything factual. You use superficial blanket statements and name-calling to make your dilluted argument. Call me a conspiracy theorist again, call me crazy again, say "Such and such makes you crazy" but dont explain why. maybe if you say it enough times it'll come true.

Re:Um, no (1)

mary_will_grow (466638) | more than 11 years ago | (#4658529)

Again, nope. It's not unusual in the slightest. Defense is a private industry. People in that industry should act in their own best interest. If things like this didn't happen, I'd be curious.

I forgot about this. Defense a private industry? Taxpayers fund defense. That is why it is necessary for the bidding system to be in place (The same bidding process that is used throughout the rest of the government, for developing our nation's infrastructure.) in order to get taxpayers the best deal, and to avoid conflicts-of-interest that occur when people in government are in bed with people in the private sector.
You are right, the companies that get a defense contract are private, that is obvious, and the fact that you felt the need to mention it makes me wonder if you missed the point. The point is that the money paid to these private defense contractors came from _our_ tax dollars, and that is why the process of taking the lowest bid is so important. We cant have billions of dollars handed out to Halliburton so Cheney can get rich. What we _can_ have is billions of dollars handed out to whatever company was selected in the fair, unbiased bidding process that existed for 200 years before Cheney came in. Anything else presensts conflicts of interest.

Maybe someday when your daddy takes his wallet away you'll realize these issues are important to people who have to put bread on the table.

Re:Um, no (1)

DebianDog (472284) | more than 11 years ago | (#4630043)

I put in a SuperDrive myself
http://www.dvdcreation.com/2001/08_aug/tutorials /a 03install.htm
and bought the "upgrade" from the Apple store for $19.95.

Does this count? ;)

Re:DRM (2, Insightful)

bailey34 (589016) | more than 11 years ago | (#4624566)

Why would you want to "turn off" the eject copyrighted CD "feature"? This is a bug fix whereby if you had inserted a crippled CD, there was no software method for you to eject it. It isn't a copyright thing.

Not for everyone (5, Informative)

ekrout (139379) | more than 11 years ago | (#4624619)

I searched Google news and found some interesting information.

Apparently, for this firmware upgrade, Mac OS X 10.1 or later is required.

There is no indication from Apple of similar updates for SuperDrive-equipped 17-inch iMacs or Power Mac G4s. The company makes it clear in the documentation that this update is intended solely for 15-inch flat panel iMacs equipped with SuperDrives.

So, be sure to realize this update isn't for anyone and everyone with a SuperDrive.

Re:Not for everyone (5, Informative)

tbmaddux (145207) | more than 11 years ago | (#4624828)

This is for PowerMac G4s (Digital Audio, Quicksilver, Quicksilver 2002). The flat-panel iMac update has been out for weeks. The 17" iMac already has the update, as do the Mirrored Drive Doors PowerMac G4s. You can get at them both, along with all the details, here:

http://www.apple.com/hardware/superdrive/ [apple.com]

... as well as through Software Update. The update requires a reboot.

How about one for the DVD/CD-RW drive in iBooks. (3, Interesting)

shippo (166521) | more than 11 years ago | (#4624771)

I have an iBook with a combined DVD/CD-RW drive, and this has problems handling CDs with mastering errors.

I had one CD that due to a pressing error had a large blob of paint on the reverse side. I inserted it without checking the underside, and then had severe problems attempting to eject the disk. I had to reboot and hold down the trackpad button to get the disk out.

I've also got an audio CD that isn't copy-protected, but has a hidden track at the start. This too appears to lock up the drive, and won't eject without a reboot or a bent paperclip.

Re:How about one for the DVD/CD-RW drive in iBooks (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4625832)

...I inserted it without checking the underside, and then had severe problems attempting to eject the disk. I had to reboot and hold down the trackpad button to get the disk out. ...

To me, this posting is evidence that we Mac users frequently don't appreciate just how good we have it. (i.e. Having to hold down the trackpad button, while restarting the computer is considered "severe.")

Time after time, I've griped to myself about something to do with the way Apple has chosen to address something. Then, I see how the equivalent situation is handled by Microsoft Windows... and... Wow!


Many forms of government have been tried, and will be tried in this world of sin and woe. No one pretends that democracy is perfect or all-wise. Indeed it has been said that democracy is the worst form of Government except all those other forms that have been tried from time to time.
- Winston Churchill


It has been said that Apple [apple.com] is the worst computer company in the world. Except for all the others.
- Anonymous Coward

Re:How about one for the DVD/CD-RW drive in iBooks (2)

Twirlip of the Mists (615030) | more than 11 years ago | (#4628004)

To me, this posting is evidence that we Mac users frequently don't appreciate just how good we have it. (i.e. Having to hold down the trackpad button, while restarting the computer is considered "severe.")

Hear, hear. Of course, to be fair, on a PC you could probably just press the "eject" button on the drive itself to get the disc out. But "eject" buttons are so 20th century....

Re:How about one for the DVD/CD-RW drive in iBooks (2)

c13v3rm0nk3y (189767) | more than 11 years ago | (#4625880)

I've seen the same thing. The latest "Queens of the Stone Age" locks up the iBook, but my two G4's have no problem with it.

Even a manual eject left the iBook in a state where it couldn't read any CD.

I'd love to apply this firmware update, but I've got a hacked firmware that makes the DVD player region-free. It also looks like nobody is interested in making a new region-free ROM image based on these latest firmware changes.

Re:How about one for the DVD/CD-RW drive in iBooks (2, Interesting)

Van Halen (31671) | more than 11 years ago | (#4627326)

I'm curious - did it just lock up the drive, or did it actually make the system become unusable? I've seen the latter happen with a malformed mixed-mode CD (I was working on creating one and it took a couple tries to get everything right). Didn't crash the OS, but might as well have. I couldn't start new gui programs but I could ssh in ok. However, sudo reboot would never actually reboot the machine - it would take down most processes and then hang waiting for something (presumably in the CD I/O subsystem). Basically I had to hit reset at that point.

When I got my CD burned properly, it was no problem. But even with bad data, the system should never hang like that, so I hope they will fix it! (yes, I submitted feedback about this, but I suspect it's not the most direct path to the developers involved)

Re:How about one for the DVD/CD-RW drive in iBooks (2)

shippo (166521) | more than 11 years ago | (#4629840)

In both cases the system became virtually unusable. I'm not on a private network so I couldn't try ssh to shut the machine down. It's as if the CD drive is sending multiple spurious interrupts back to Mac OS X. I've not tried either CD with Mac OS 9.

Price for a new DVD (1)

hnoon (595720) | more than 11 years ago | (#4626595)

Somebody already posted this link [apple.com] to apple's website up there somewhere. What worries me is the sentence: >One of our suppliers, Pioneer Electronics, Inc., >has advised that some of its DVD-R/CD-RW drives >(including some Apple SuperDrives) may be unable >to recognize the new high-speed media, and that >using this media may permanently damage the >drive. So you stick a new DVD in and get a fried drive. Good deal. Must be doing wonders for Pioneer.

Re:Price for a new DVD (1)

Warlock7 (531656) | more than 11 years ago | (#4627791)

It's all fixed, so what are you babbling about? This is in regards to Recordable DVDs at 2x and 4x, not any "new DVD". Pioneer came out with the fix for this a couple of weeks ago too. So, again, what the hell are you babbling about?
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