Archive for December, 2006

Consumer electronics repair

Saturday, December 2nd, 2006

Manufacturers currently do not have any incentive to supply repair parts and service literature for consumer electronics. Their profit is maximized if the unit fails immediately after the warranty runs out and they have a new product cycle at that point to replace it. Unfortunately this approach creates an environmental load as well as a broken window economy, all because some information is hidden from the consumer when they buy the product.

I propose a consumer electronics labeling scheme that gives the consumer several critical pieces of information:

– How long the manufacturer pledges to make service parts available- Maximum cost of each major service part for a given class of device
– If the manufacturer provides service literature to independent technicians covering at least several key topics, defined per class of device


Friday, December 1st, 2006

cdrtools/cdrecord: The original cdrecord by Schilling. Was released under GPL, later combined with CDDL build tools to render it undistributable due to contributed GPL code. After Schilling obtained permission from contributors to distribute with CDDL build tools, then cdrecord is changed to use the library libscg (under CDDL) itself. This is undistributable in any case.
cdrecord-ProDVD: The cdrecord with DVD burning capabilities. Binary only with a 6 month license renewal. Some parts open sourced in 5/06?

dvdrtools: Fork of cdrtools by Bero to support DVD burners.

growisofs: Rewritten DVD-only burning software.

cdrkit: Fork of pre-CDDL cdrecord, using cmake build system.

wodim: The new derived cdrecord replacement in cdrkit.

Linux 2.6 SCSI/ATAPI support has been spotty and the various cdrecords floating around that distributions pinned to older versions due to the license change has not helped. cdrkit/wodim should support the Linux 2.6 ATAPI interface correctly (as well as latest versions of cdrtools). ossdvd is another project to support Linux 2.6 with a forked cdrecord.