Not directly CNC related — but interesting in the bigger open source / DIY Hacking scheme of things.
fragmentedsector: Sony vs Microsoft: Engaging the Hacker Community
I believe, in many respects, that most companies do a piss poor job of handling the hacker community. When hackers get involved with technology, they begin to use products differently than their original intended use. Normally they push the product to do far more than what was originally designed for, but in order to do this they break a few mechanics and open things up that were closed down.
I can understand why a company would be upset about tampering with their product, but given todays society and the way the world works, bad public relations (PR) is really not worth the hassle. If only Sony agreed with me…
Public hacker George Hotz (aka geohot) is being sued right now by Sony for his recent hacks on the PS3. Geohot was successful in opening up the PS3 and making it play homebrew games and do PS2 emulation. He also released the Metldr key for the PS3, the metldr key cannot be updated, so the PS3 is basically hacked for good. Sony didn’t like this at all, and is now suing geohot. It’s a shame too, this terrific hacker showed interest in working for a company like Sony and this is how they react to his skill. Geohot has gone on the offensive, making a rap song against Sony and even asking for money for lawyers against the titans (I’ll probably be donating to the cause).
Microsoft, surprisingly has taken a much different stance on the matter. With the XBox 360 Kinect, Microsoft has been surprisingly accepting of the hacker community, releasing the software development kit (SDK) within the coming week. Originally it was thought that Microsoft would lock down the device, but it seems they are happy with the recent stunts of playing Angry Birds and World of Warcraft.
As progress in today’s modern world, I feel it is necessary to acknowledge the power of the hacker community and the loyalists that are among them. Geohot could have been a prized gem for Sony, but this is what happens when companies make bad decisions, like threatening to ban all users of the exploits Geohot found and what not. It’s a shame that more companies aren’t open to the idea of the hacker community taking interest in their products.