Linked by Thom Holwerda on Wed 14th Oct 2009 13:21 UTC
Legal So, we have Apple who is paranoid about people installing legally purchased copies of its operating system on non-Apple labelled machines. Just when you thought it couldn't get any more ridiculous than that, we have a hardware company trying to prevent people from installing operating systems on its hardware. Wait, what?
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You can relax...
by kensai on Wed 14th Oct 2009 13:51 UTC
kensai
Member since:
2005-12-27

Relax guys, now you can continue the NetBSD installation on TI devices frenzy.

Reply Score: 7

Don't forget Nikon
by fretinator on Wed 14th Oct 2009 13:55 UTC
fretinator
Member since:
2005-07-06

This does make me wonder what would happen if Apple and TI joined forces.

Apple + TI + Nikon = AppleTiNi

Reply Score: 10

RE: Don't forget Nikon
by jgagnon on Wed 14th Oct 2009 18:06 UTC in reply to "Don't forget Nikon"
jgagnon Member since:
2008-06-24

Maybe Apple could make Snapple into their official drink.

Reply Score: 1

RE: Don't forget Nikon
by panzi on Thu 15th Oct 2009 12:48 UTC in reply to "Don't forget Nikon"
panzi Member since:
2006-01-22

Yet another proof for Arnold J. Rimmers theory how wrong + wrong + wrong = right. (I *always* got a pen!)

Reply Score: 2

RE: Don't forget Nikon
by Eddyspeeder on Thu 15th Oct 2009 13:53 UTC in reply to "Don't forget Nikon"
Eddyspeeder Member since:
2006-05-10

I don't know, but I'm absolutely positive that I do not wish to try installing OSX on my TI-83+

Reply Score: 1

Advertisement
by Cody Evans on Wed 14th Oct 2009 14:04 UTC
Cody Evans
Member since:
2009-08-14

The type of people that install alternative OS's on their calculators are the type of people that will demonstrate said feature to everyone they come into contact with. So TI is trying to block free advertisement...

Reply Score: 2

Not reverse engineered
by henno on Wed 14th Oct 2009 14:14 UTC
henno
Member since:
2009-06-25

In fact, they just plain broke the 512 bit (!) signing key.
TI should have used a bigger key. Fittingly, they broke the system by plain mathematics, not reverse engineering. But breaking crypto is also not allowed by the DMCA, so same difference....

Reply Score: 1

RE: Not reverse engineered
by ktlc on Wed 14th Oct 2009 15:47 UTC in reply to "Not reverse engineered"
ktlc Member since:
2006-06-13

The models are actually rather old. Back then 512 bit used to be enough. TI has newer models that have far stronger cryptography.

Reply Score: 2

RE: Not reverse engineered
by sbenitezb on Wed 14th Oct 2009 21:36 UTC in reply to "Not reverse engineered"
sbenitezb Member since:
2005-07-22

But breaking crypto is also not allowed by the DMCA, so same difference....


That means that you could use rot13 and be safe because DMCA forbids breaking crypto? Or did I missunderstand something? (I don't live in USA, so DMCA doesn't mean anything to me)

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: Not reverse engineered
by boldingd on Wed 14th Oct 2009 22:45 UTC in reply to "RE: Not reverse engineered"
boldingd Member since:
2009-02-19

The DMCA prohibits defeating a technological measure that restricts access to a copyrighted work. So, if some company or individual somewhere releases a copyrighted text, and they "encrypt" it by running it thru rot13... then yes, if they can convince a court of law that rot13 qualifies as a "technological protection measure," then it would be illegal to decrypt that document.

I don't know what the qualifications are to be considered a "technological protection measure," tho. If the DMCA includes minimum requirements, then rot13 may not meet them; if it doesn't, then it might be up to a court of law to decide if something as trivial as rot13 could reasonably be called a technological protection measure.

Obviously: IANAL

Edited 2009-10-14 22:48 UTC

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: Not reverse engineered
by sorpigal on Thu 15th Oct 2009 13:21 UTC in reply to "RE: Not reverse engineered"
sorpigal Member since:
2005-11-02

"But breaking crypto is also not allowed by the DMCA, so same difference....


That means that you could use rot13 and be safe because DMCA forbids breaking crypto? Or did I missunderstand something? (I don't live in USA, so DMCA doesn't mean anything to me)
"

Yes. Someone once got sued over 'decrypting' base64 encoding. I don't recall who or for what, and I cannot remember if they won in court, but it happened. A lot of people cannot afford to go to court and prove that it's a ridiculous claim, so companies can get away with this kind of thing.

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: Not reverse engineered
by google_ninja on Fri 16th Oct 2009 12:41 UTC in reply to "RE: Not reverse engineered"
google_ninja Member since:
2006-02-05

The DMCA is an implementation of two of the WIPO treaties. Chances are that if you live in a united nations country, you have something like it.

Reply Score: 2

What you own
by sbergman27 on Wed 14th Oct 2009 14:15 UTC
sbergman27
Member since:
2005-07-24

Remember that when you purchase a piece of software you actually own that software. But when you purchase a piece of hardware, you are only purchasing a license to use that hardware within the limits of the license, implicitly agreed to the first time you turn the unit on, which usually allows for making a single backup copy of the hardware, etc. But usually does not allow for mixing and matching operating systems on it. TI has every right to protect their property from user abuse by long-haired, unshowered hippy-geeks who would probably only use it to facilitate terrorist plots against good, law-abiding Christian citizens. I'm with TI on this one. :-P

Reply Score: 18

RE: What you own
by evert on Wed 14th Oct 2009 14:23 UTC in reply to "What you own"
evert Member since:
2005-07-06

You made my laugh :-) I was just in need for some humor. Working on my thesis, boring. I guess the TI guys have spend years on their thesis. They must be bored to hell to come up with this kind of crap.

I just wonder, how was a 512 bit key cracked? That means that much of the current PKI structure is unsafe.

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: What you own
by bhtooefr on Sat 17th Oct 2009 19:43 UTC in reply to "RE: What you own"
bhtooefr Member since:
2009-02-19

Distributed.net was used, IIRC.

Reply Score: 1

RE: What you own
by JoostinOnline on Wed 14th Oct 2009 14:43 UTC in reply to "What you own"
JoostinOnline Member since:
2009-09-18

They never broke the law. There were no modifications made to TI-OS (which is actually distributed freely). TI does not in any way own the hardware after selling it. All they did was make it possible to have greater control over the HARDWARE. TI has never complained when people made 3rd-party OS's, which have been available for over 5 years; I actually was part of a group who developed one in high school. Even without the keys, one could easily send an alternative OS to a calculator. This just makes it easier.

Reply Score: 2

RE: What you own
by ferrels on Wed 14th Oct 2009 20:54 UTC in reply to "What you own"
ferrels Member since:
2006-08-15

You've completely misinterpreted US law. Buying hardware in the US doesn't constitute buying a license. You're paying for hardware and you're getting hardware. Under US law, you're entitled to do whatever you want with the hardware you own. But Appple, in it's DRM frenzy and knee-jerk litigiousness hopes to make a precedent with companies like Pystar. And TI is hoping to capitalize on Apple's litigation to keep people from hacking the calculators they bought and paid for.

Under your premise, if you buy a car in the US, then it comes with a drivers license that only allows you, the owner to drive it?


Here's another example of your faulty premise....I buy a Chevy automobile and Chevy says that unless I put Exxon gasoline in the tank, then I'm breaking the law. That's just ignorant!

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: What you own
by WereCatf on Wed 14th Oct 2009 21:04 UTC in reply to "RE: What you own"
WereCatf Member since:
2006-02-15

Ferrels... it was sarcasm.

Reply Score: 4

RE[3]: What you own
by ferrels on Wed 14th Oct 2009 21:10 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: What you own"
ferrels Member since:
2006-08-15

:-) You got me good! I gotta get out of this office more!

Reply Score: 2

RE[4]: What you own
by sbergman27 on Fri 16th Oct 2009 02:12 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: What you own"
sbergman27 Member since:
2005-07-24

You got me good!

S'Okay, Emily Litella. :-P

Edited 2009-10-16 02:18 UTC

Reply Score: 2

RE: What you own
by ritesh_nair on Thu 15th Oct 2009 00:11 UTC in reply to "What you own"
ritesh_nair Member since:
2007-03-22

Dude you are right.

Its like buying a car and also purchasing that red Calvin Klien underwear, or even lingerie.

Cars cannot be driven by anyone else.
The car has a digitizer. Your thumb print is the only one allowed. You cannot sell it. if you do then you can be jained.. (Non-autodusk). Cos they cant make money from it.

You can wear red underwear only on fridays.
If you wear it on any other day , they will conficicate the same and leave you in jail without the underwear.

The lingerie should be worn only by the designater woman you buy it for.If your girl and wife both have this lovely shape that you can use it here and there... then sorry, they have the right to come into your bed room and conficicate the firl / wife and the lingerie.

Reply Score: 2

RE: What you own
by StephenBeDoper on Thu 15th Oct 2009 03:47 UTC in reply to "What you own"
StephenBeDoper Member since:
2005-07-06

you are only purchasing a license to use that hardware within the limits of the license, implicitly agreed to the first time you turn the unit on, which usually allows for making a single backup copy of the hardware


Now THERE's an idea. Quick - someone get me a cardboard box and a marker to write "Duplicator" on it so I can backup my hardware Calvin and Hobbes-style.

Reply Score: 3

RE: What you own
by alcibiades on Fri 16th Oct 2009 10:22 UTC in reply to "What you own"
alcibiades Member since:
2005-10-12

In addition, everyone, repeat after me: TI is a SOFTWARE company. It makes its profits on that there Software. It only sells the hardware as a favor. As a vehicle for its software. These people who are trying to unbundle hardware and software are threatening the revenue stream of one of our great creative companies. Yes, this thing has to be stopped in its tracks right now, to safeguard the position of TI and its unique integrated systems model.

See, its the integration of hardware and software that makes this software company so unique. They develop it all in house. The hardware is made for the software and vice versa.

We must not let this be put at risk!

Reply Score: 2

What about..
by NxStY on Wed 14th Oct 2009 16:20 UTC
NxStY
Member since:
2005-11-12

If you install OSX on your TI calculator, will you get sued by both companies?

Reply Score: 12

RE: What about..
by jgagnon on Wed 14th Oct 2009 18:08 UTC in reply to "What about.."
jgagnon Member since:
2008-06-24

Only if you bundle them and sell them to a 3rd party.

Reply Score: 2

RE: What about..
by flanque on Wed 14th Oct 2009 23:09 UTC in reply to "What about.."
flanque Member since:
2005-12-15

Maybe Apple and TI will sue each other.

Reply Score: 2

v Plagiarism risk?
by JayDee on Wed 14th Oct 2009 16:35 UTC
RE: Plagiarism risk?
by Thom_Holwerda on Wed 14th Oct 2009 16:39 UTC in reply to "Plagiarism risk?"
Thom_Holwerda Member since:
2005-06-29

That would be cheating, not plagiarism.

And yes, that's what I used to do on my TI-83. I wouldn't have passed some tests in high school without my mad TI-83 programming skills.

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: Plagiarism risk?
by StephenBeDoper on Thu 15th Oct 2009 03:51 UTC in reply to "RE: Plagiarism risk?"
StephenBeDoper Member since:
2005-07-06

And yes, that's what I used to do on my TI-83. I wouldn't have passed some tests in high school without my mad TI-83 programming skills.


Back in my day, we just wrote all of the formulas on the backs of our calculators (in pencil).

Reply Score: 2

RE: Plagiarism risk?
by daddio on Wed 14th Oct 2009 16:43 UTC in reply to "Plagiarism risk?"
daddio Member since:
2007-07-14

When I last took a calculus class, the instructor allowed NO CALCULATORS.

None of this silliness with banning some and allowing some depending on the level of programmability.

It meant that the teacher actually had to grade the answers by hand, and the text was shorter because you can only do so much by hand.

That approach still resonates with me.

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: Plagiarism risk?
by hollovoid on Wed 14th Oct 2009 17:54 UTC in reply to "RE: Plagiarism risk?"
hollovoid Member since:
2005-09-21

I know what you mean, there weren't any math classes that allowed calculators, and sneaking one in was an easy way to get yourself a 0 if caught. Im only 27 so it wasn't all that long ago... A few fellow nerds did get around it by wearing those calculator watches ;) but still you should know how to do the work and using a calculator is kinda cheap way out (or a way for schools to get pad grades for funding in the future)

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: Plagiarism risk?
by StephenBeDoper on Thu 15th Oct 2009 03:56 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Plagiarism risk?"
StephenBeDoper Member since:
2005-07-06

I know what you mean, there weren't any math classes that allowed calculators, and sneaking one in was an easy way to get yourself a 0 if caught. Im only 27 so it wasn't all that long ago...


I'm a few years older, but the attitude of most of high school math teachers was basically "you're not in elementary school anymore, I assume that you know how to do basic arithmetic by now, so I don't care whether or not you use a calculator."

Reply Score: 2

RE[4]: Plagiarism risk?
by MamiyaOtaru on Thu 15th Oct 2009 07:29 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Plagiarism risk?"
MamiyaOtaru Member since:
2005-11-11

I think (hope) the concern is with calculators that can do more than basic arithmetic

Reply Score: 3

RE[5]: Plagiarism risk?
by StephenBeDoper on Thu 15th Oct 2009 21:57 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: Plagiarism risk?"
StephenBeDoper Member since:
2005-07-06

I think (hope) the concern is with calculators that can do more than basic arithmetic


True (I'd meant to include a note in my previous post that there wasn't anything higher-end than a $20-$30 "scientific" calculator in my HS math classes).

Reply Score: 2

RE: Plagiarism risk?
by JoostinOnline on Wed 14th Oct 2009 18:40 UTC in reply to "Plagiarism risk?"
JoostinOnline Member since:
2009-09-18

You guys don't seem to understand what exactly is going on. I have actually been following this since the summer, and I have been part of the TI Community for several years (go ahead, call me a geek). Let me clear some things up:
1) JayDee, this is about 3rd-party operating systems, not adding things to a TI operating system. Besides, adding another menu is a feature found in several applications, and does not involve making changes to the OS, making it perfectly legal. It is done using things like keyhooks. TI allows it, TI does it (Catalog Help is an example, link below).

2) Sending an alternative OS is legal. TI does not own the operating systems, and have no legal control over its distribution. They are made from scratch, not from the TI-OS.

3) The OS's available (at least currently) are in no way practical. None of them are even close to finished, since it takes so long to develop an OS, especially when you are still a kid. The developers either give up or get involved in something else (dating for example, lol). The OSs are simply recreational, and are only made to show that they can be made. One of them is little more than a pong game (link below)! The one I worked on was Vera (link below), but activity slowly dropped and eventually stopped all together. The public release only shows some tests.

4) Having the keys does not make it possible to install 3rd-party OSs. That has been possible (and easy) for a long time. All it does is make it easier.

Hopefully that clears some things up for those who had a girlfriend in high school. ;)

Links:
Catalog Help
http://education.ti.com/educationportal/downloadcenter/SoftwareDeta...

PongOS
http://www.ticalc.org/archives/files/fileinfo/350/35058.html

Vera OS
http://timendus.student.utwente.nl/~vera/wiki/index.php/Main_Page

Reply Score: 4

RE: Plagiarism risk?
by looncraz on Wed 14th Oct 2009 21:17 UTC in reply to "Plagiarism risk?"
looncraz Member since:
2005-07-24

If school was meant to mimic the real world, then a student's ability to cheat without getting caught would be rewarded.

That is the nature of the real world. It doesn't matter if you actually know anything, it is merely whether or not you can make the guy paying you think you know what he needs you to know.

It doesn't matter if you have to use some tricked-up tool to get the job done, the job gets done and done well enough to please the boss so that you get your paycheck so you can buy food, go home, and smoke some grass.

That is what is real.

--The loon

Reply Score: 3

RE: Plagiarism risk?
by Bobthearch on Thu 15th Oct 2009 01:38 UTC in reply to "Plagiarism risk?"
Bobthearch Member since:
2006-01-27

Something like that has been around for many years already, and is much simpler. There's a free program to falsely show the TI memory as being reset or empty, even when the calc is loaded with helper applications or notes.

Reply Score: 2

RE: Plagiarism risk?
by unoengborg on Thu 15th Oct 2009 21:06 UTC in reply to "Plagiarism risk?"
unoengborg Member since:
2005-07-06

Hopefully I don't get modded down for this. I'm not defending TI here but educational institutions are afraid of plagiarism using these operating systems. Can you imagine copying notes in a secret menu on your TI-84 ? Most teachers and professors would not take the time to check the OS on every student's phone so they could just ban the use of such calculators. This in fact would take a big bite out of TI's revenue.



If a calculator makes any difference on whether you pass the test or not, there is something wrong with the test.

A good test should be designed in a way that you can bring books, calculators, or anything you want except a friend to help you.

Reply Score: 3

Comment by Praxis
by Praxis on Wed 14th Oct 2009 18:01 UTC
Praxis
Member since:
2009-09-17

I would guess the reason that they make hacking their calculators so hard is that they have a vested interest in making sure people don't use said hacks to cheat. TI calculators are some of the most popular for standardized tests in America like the ACT and SAT, I don't know what calculators are used in other countries. If TI gains a reputation as an easily hackable calculator their is a chance that those standardized tests will stop allow the use of those TI calculators. Students buying calculators for tests is assuredly a huge source of income.

This doesn't make it anymore right though, but its easy to see why TI cares about something that seems so benign at first. The response will probably up to up the crypto protecting their calculators, that's really their only legal choice. It would be nice if you could buy a calculator that was more modder friendly, but since it would never be allowed on school tests no one would ever sell one.

Reply Score: 1

RE: Comment by Praxis
by bhtooefr on Sat 17th Oct 2009 19:50 UTC in reply to "Comment by Praxis"
bhtooefr Member since:
2009-02-19

Of course, I wouldn't need to replace the firmware to make a very effective cheating device.

Device boots up into a shell that looks and acts exactly like a TI-83+. Teacher issues reset command. Device appears to be wiped clean.

Now, I enter a password into it, which drops it out of the shell... into my completely unharmed device, with all of my notes and programs and such designed to cheat with.

Not only has this been done before, half the apps on ticalc.org are apps designed specifically for this purpose. ;) (The other half are games, of course.)

Now, using that, you can use other apps to get features from banned calculators - there are various third-party apps out there that can give a TI-83+ just about every capability that a TI-89 has.

Note that none of this involved hacking the OS, it was all done with applications running on top of the completely unmodified OS, and using TI's startup program. I believe that approach is even resilient against attacks involving removing the batteries.

Reply Score: 1

Apple is not the origin of anything!
by rgathright on Wed 14th Oct 2009 19:05 UTC
rgathright
Member since:
2009-09-24

Apple rules the industry with proprietary hardware.

Apple does not own the iPhone once they sold it to an end user.

They must open up their iPhone.

~sent from ASUS 1005HA netbook http://bit.ly/44CHFm

Reply Score: 1

I hope the EFF wins, but...
by madcrow on Wed 14th Oct 2009 19:30 UTC
madcrow
Member since:
2006-03-13

...frankly the golden age of TI hacking and coding is long over. The simultaneous rise of near-universal cellphone ownership among middle and high school age North Americans has seen to that and the massive increase in capabilities that those phones have has done more to hurt the ability of TI hackers to do new and cool things ever could. After all, once little Johnny can play GTA on his iPhone, what incentive does he have to even discover that games and apps can be run on his low-resolution monochromatic calculator, much less dive in and learn Z80 assembly (or even TI BASIC)

Reply Score: 3

RE: I hope the EFF wins, but...
by mmu_man on Wed 14th Oct 2009 19:49 UTC in reply to "I hope the EFF wins, but..."
mmu_man Member since:
2006-09-30

...frankly the golden age of TI hacking and coding is long over.

Pretty much yeah... I recall hacking apps for the Prosit kernel on Ti 68k, that was fun.
http://www.ticalc.org/archives/files/fileinfo/105/10511.html

what incentive does he have to even discover that games and apps can be run on his low-resolution monochromatic calculator, much less dive in and learn Z80 assembly (or even TI BASIC)

Well actually there are still some rare people making demos on Ti calcs...
hopefully we'll get some at the Alchimie 2k9!
http://triplea.fr/alchimie/

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: I hope the EFF wins, but...
by madcrow on Wed 14th Oct 2009 20:33 UTC in reply to "RE: I hope the EFF wins, but..."
madcrow Member since:
2006-03-13

Well actually there are still some rare people making demos on Ti calcs...
hopefully we'll get some at the Alchimie 2k9!
http://triplea.fr/alchimie/

Something tells me that these are people who either learned Z80 by programming Spectrums or CPCs in their youth or who are holdovers from the golden age of TI hacking. New kids just aren't coming into the scene as fast as older folks are leaving it.

Reply Score: 2

JoostinOnline Member since:
2009-09-18

"Well actually there are still some rare people making demos on Ti calcs... hopefully we'll get some at the Alchimie 2k9! http://triplea.fr/alchimie/
Something tells me that these are people who either learned Z80 by programming Spectrums or CPCs in their youth or who are holdovers from the golden age of TI hacking. New kids just aren't coming into the scene as fast as older folks are leaving it. "
You are right. Over the last few years the population of the "TI Community" has been dropping. It used to be that at the beginning of every school year tons of people would join forums. These days, only people who have a real interest in programming join.

From "Mirage OS"
I wasn't aware there were 'real' operating systems available for TI calculators. I recall there being a few applications that were called OSes, but they were merely file browsers and/or application launchers that ran on top of the calculator's native operating system. MirageOS was one example that comes to mind.

Yeah, people almost always refer to their shells as OSs. The only true alternative OSs are far from being finished.

Nobody is going to make an OS for cheating either. It is way easier to make programs for cheating on a TI OS, so I doubt TI is worried about that (I don't know what they actually are worried about though).

Reply Score: 1

RE: I hope the EFF wins, but...
by Kroc on Wed 14th Oct 2009 20:36 UTC in reply to "I hope the EFF wins, but..."
Kroc Member since:
2005-11-10

much less dive in and learn Z80 assembly


6502 forever!

Reply Score: 1

Athlander Member since:
2008-03-10

I miss programming my BBC B...

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: I hope the EFF wins, but...
by flanque on Wed 14th Oct 2009 23:12 UTC in reply to "RE: I hope the EFF wins, but..."
flanque Member since:
2005-12-15

Wow. Instant walk down memory lane. Ahhhh...

Reply Score: 2

Let me get this straight
by license_2_blather on Thu 15th Oct 2009 01:09 UTC
license_2_blather
Member since:
2006-02-05

OK, you bought a calculator, as in _already paid_ TI for it. You want to try some different software on it, and they get hacked off (no pun intended)?

How is this adversely affecting their profits? Are they scared their tech support will be swamped with calls from people wanting to know how to boot NetBSD or ConTiki? Too many returns after n00bs bricked them?

You ar not selling their OS on the black market. You are not building your own competing calculator with bits of their OS in it.

DMCA or no...this is asinine.

Reply Score: 2

zero tolerance is the way to go
by ozonehole on Thu 15th Oct 2009 01:10 UTC
ozonehole
Member since:
2006-01-07

Hacking calculators is a gateway crime. First the students hack a TI calculator. Before long, they're running 419 scams, spam lists and hacking into US Homeland Security computers to steal the nuclear launch codes.

The only way to deal with the perpetrators of these crimes is to waterboard them. Thank goodness that we have great laws like the DMCA and the Patriot Act to keep us safe.

Reply Score: 3

MirageOS
by Bobthearch on Thu 15th Oct 2009 01:47 UTC
Bobthearch
Member since:
2006-01-27

I wasn't aware there were 'real' operating systems available for TI calculators. I recall there being a few applications that were called OSes, but they were merely file browsers and/or application launchers that ran on top of the calculator's native operating system. MirageOS was one example that comes to mind.

Reply Score: 2

To Thom Holwerda
by panzi on Thu 15th Oct 2009 12:46 UTC
panzi
Member since:
2006-01-22

Are you, by any chance, somehow related to Douglas Adams? Just because of your style of writing.

Reply Score: 2