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Asking Canon to release their source code

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Re: Asking Canon to release their source code
« Reply #20 on: 20 / May / 2008, 13:08:48 »
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I'm sure Canon doesn't see CHDK or the community that revolves around it as inconsequential. No hardware maker will see the community that hacks their products as inconsequential. Still, it seems that Canon has chosen not to make an open move - either to encourage CHDK development or discourage it. I'm sure they are aware of CHDK and I'm sure they know ways in which they could help the efforts. If they're smart, they'd be regularly monitoring this forum and the wiki. If they already know all of this, I doubt a petition would make any difference in there policy regarding CHDK - whatever it is.

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Offline RaduP

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Re: Asking Canon to release their source code
« Reply #21 on: 20 / May / 2008, 18:02:42 »
I'm sure Canon doesn't see CHDK or the community that revolves around it as inconsequential. No hardware maker will see the community that hacks their products as inconsequential.

I am not sure on how Canon looks at CHDK, but I don't think they take this projects very seriously. It doesn't cost them any money, and most companies that offer end user products are rarely bothered by the modder community (unless if those modders do stuff like disabling copyright protection and stuff like that).

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Still, it seems that Canon has chosen not to make an open move - either to encourage CHDK development or discourage it. I'm sure they are aware of CHDK and I'm sure they know ways in which they could help the efforts. If they're smart, they'd be regularly monitoring this forum and the wiki. If they already know all of this, I doubt a petition would make any difference in there policy regarding CHDK - whatever it is.
I don't really see a big company coming to a small group of developers and saying: "Hey, we like your work, how about we give you the SDK?"
But if their customers come to them in large numbers and say: "You know, that new camera model do not support CHDK because you guys made it hader for the CHDK developers to hack it, so we are instead going to buy an older model off Ebay, so that we can use CHDK with it", then they might be more willing to cooperate with the CHDK project.
It's ultimately about money, and if people vote with their wallet, then companies usually listen.

One case is the King Quest 9 game. A group of fans started working at this game, Vivendi Universal told them to stop, then a lot of people contacted Vivendi Universal, which eventually told them: "Ok, go head, make your game".
Another case is Compaq/HP sponsoring an effort to port Linuc to their PDAs. And there are many, many examples where big companies realized that working with their fans is actually a good idea.

Re: Asking Canon to release their source code
« Reply #22 on: 20 / May / 2008, 23:31:14 »
And there are many, many examples where big companies realized that working with their fans is actually a good idea.
There are also many examples where big companies go the opposite route - where they try to force people to stop modifying their products. Big companies can get extremely touchy about unofficial mods. To a company like Canon, the size of the community wouldn't mean much. The one essential fact is that their firmware has been hacked and all the related info is openly available. This is not just some modder community adding on to their product - this is a modder community that has cracked their products.

They could continue to ignore CHDK, they could try to capitalize on it (use it to seel more cameras, recruit developers, etc.), or they could try to fight it. Way too often, companies take the third option despite the (sound IMO) reasons you gave for them not to.

And one more thing - you seem to underestimate individuals and small groups of developers. Keep in mind that a single developer can write code that effects millions. Napster was made by one guy (or was it a small group?) Myspace was two guys. This small group of developers has already written code that's caught the interest of many of the top tech blogs on the internet - blogs that are read by millions of people.

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Offline RaduP

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Re: Asking Canon to release their source code
« Reply #23 on: 21 / May / 2008, 02:47:40 »
Hmm, I am not aware of any company that even tried (officially, by litigation) to stop people from modifying the firmware of their products, with the exception of stuff such as hacking encryption keys from DVD, HDDVD, Blueray and game consoles.
Perhaps you can provide an example?

AFAIK, modifying the firmware, when not done with the intent to circumvent copyright protection, is NOT illegal. There were some printers makers who tried to sue those who hacked their cartridges for compatibility reasons, but AFAIK, they lost.

And I am very much aware of the power of a few developers, I am the founder of a relatively successful project.


Re: Asking Canon to release their source code
« Reply #24 on: 21 / May / 2008, 09:44:08 »
Hmm, I am not aware of any company that even tried (officially, by litigation) to stop people from modifying the firmware of their products, with the exception of stuff such as hacking encryption keys from DVD, HDDVD, Blueray and game consoles.
Perhaps you can provide an example?
Damn! I knew you were gonna ask that  ;)

I dunno of any cases that actually went to trial, but big companies love their cease and desist letters. The one situation that comes to mind is the one that involved Creative. Apparently they've been really slow about developing Vista drivers for their sound cards. An single developer decided to do it for them and ended up coming to the rescue of many of their customers. He got a cease and desist letter from them. (I think they eventually backed down after they got a lot of negative press). Here's the link http://gizmodo.com/373748/creative-presents-cease+and+desist-note-to-developer-hero

Here's another example http://gizmodo.com/gadgets/laptops/apple-cds-macintel-sites-118018.php

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Offline RaduP

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Re: Asking Canon to release their source code
« Reply #25 on: 21 / May / 2008, 12:49:58 »
Oh, yes, forgot about the Creative case.
But if you folowed it (and I did a little), the vasty majority of people posting on Creative's forum were very clear: "Creative, I am never going to buy your garbage again, ktnxb!". The same reaction was mirrored on other sites that carried the story, such as Digg.com Because of how they acted, I am also never going to buy anything Creative Labs, ever again (and I have 2 sound cards from them at the moment).

If Canon things that Creative did the right thing, and they want to follow their very successful PR strategy [/sarcasm], then I guess they can try and see what happens.

As for Apple, they are a bunch of morons who will send C&D letters to everyone, but I'd really wish to see them having the balls to take such a case to court. Not only they would lose in this particular case, but the party being sued would be able to counter sue them for a frivolous lawsuit and ask for damages.
« Last Edit: 21 / May / 2008, 16:29:30 by RaduP »

 

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