Michael Robertson, who funded the $200,000 attempt to get Linux running on an Xbox, writes about the XBox’s successful DRM implementation as a harbinger of Longhorn:
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In spite of sharing the insides with a traditional PC, the Xbox has a dramatic and dangerous difference. A PC buyer can install any software or hardware that they wish. They own the machine and can change it to suit their needs – true ownership. There are no limitations. This open architecture is largely responsible for the two-decade personal computer revolution. With an Xbox, the user is merely renting the box. Microsoft decides what software (games) users can load and even how they can use it. When it connects to the net, Microsoft can and has instructed the machine to change its behavior to block certain users, functionality or software that it does not agree with. They are changing the rules after you purchase it to suit their needs and not your needs.
The Xbox served as the training wheels for Microsoft’s new Longhorn operating system, which is slipping to a 2007 launch. Like the Xbox, Longhorn will limit what software you can load. In the guise of “security”, Microsoft is trying to dramatically change the way PCs work. Instead of the owner deciding what software they want to install and run, Microsoft is seizing that power from them. Under the smokescreen of security, they are pronouncing that it is good for Microsoft to decide what software you can use.
Categories: Uncategorized dw