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Sony Outage Disables DASH Devices, No ETA On a Fix 116

New submitter Jack Greenbaum writes: In 2012 Sony closed the developer site for the DASH, their version of the Chumby platform. Sony never officially killed off the product, and they kept the back end servers on line, until recently at least. About two weeks ago DASH owners started seeing their devices fail with a cryptic error message "Unable to download the Control Panel (No download information available). Please restart your dash to try again." Sony acknowledges that the issue is at their end, but no ETA for a fix has been provided. The passionate DASH community is not pleased that Sony is being so quiet about a fix. One user even overslept for work because they depended on the alarm clock feature. Now every DASH is dead until Sony decides to not abandon its walled garden.
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Sony Outage Disables DASH Devices, No ETA On a Fix

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday March 17, 2016 @07:57AM (#51713939)
    would it have hurt the submitter to have informed readers that this is basically a cross between a tablet, alarm clock and digital photo frame? We aren't all familiair with every old, niche, discontinued product from every major electronics company you know!
    • by mwvdlee ( 775178 ) on Thursday March 17, 2016 @09:06AM (#51714311) Homepage

      So basically an expensive, vendor-locked version of a $40 Android tablet?

      • More or less, except the first Chumby model appeared a year before the iPod Touch.
      • by Jhon ( 241832 ) on Thursday March 17, 2016 @10:31AM (#51714837) Homepage Journal

        Sort of. But this was out when a current $40 tablet would run $300+.

        I have a dash and I paid $50 new towards their end of life a few years ago. Its a nice device. Yes, you can do more with a tablet but except for this lame requirement that it find the server to fully boot *IF* it's on a network, it's a great -- the right size, balance, snooze button locations etc. it's a CLOCK, not a tablet. It's shaped like a clock.

        Heres the annoying thing: If I shut off my wifi at home and boot the device it will start to JUST the alarm clock (nothing else will work). If it can connect to my wifi but can't 'phone home', it's as described in the article. There would be less anger from the dash users if the damn thing would just default to the "clock mode" as if no network was available.

        If you do a factory reset and dont bother setting up a network you can use it as a 'dumb alarm clock'.

      • I fail to see the difference. Both are vendor-locked turds.
    • by beernutz ( 16190 )

      Maybe if you clicked on the link they provided that leads to the "Chumby platform" you would have been able to read all about them. That is what they are there for, to provide additional information for people who are not familiar with the hyperlinked term.

      • Blasphemy! Expecting the summary to not include information that can be found in any of the numerous links? How dare you expect people to learn to read on the internet!

      • by arth1 ( 260657 ) on Thursday March 17, 2016 @12:00PM (#51715537) Homepage Journal

        Maybe if you clicked on the link they provided that leads to the "Chumby platform" you would have been able to read all about them.

        Maybe you should have clicked that link yourself before posting, because it leads to a page for buying new and used chumby devices, without describing what they actually are. Not even on any page reachable from that page.

        A few words of description in the submission would not have hurt anyone.

  • Explanations needed (Score:4, Interesting)

    by arth1 ( 260657 ) on Thursday March 17, 2016 @07:59AM (#51713943) Homepage Journal

    WTF is DASH? Or Chumby?
    Following the link leads me to believe it's like a Palm Audrey 2.0?

    A short description in the headline of what you're talking about is never amiss. But then again, this is Timothy, the indiscriminate copy/paster who shan't be bothered to actually read through the submission to see whether it makes sense.

    • by ausekilis ( 1513635 ) on Thursday March 17, 2016 @08:06AM (#51713967)
      I'm sure the 10 people that have these devices know already... Why do the other thousands care?
      • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday March 17, 2016 @08:29AM (#51714083)

        Because it's yet another warning to "consumers" that if you buy anything "cloud connected", its useful lifetime is limited entirely by the service provider's whims.

        • by wbr1 ( 2538558 )
          10000x this. Do you want your cloud connected refrigerator to stop working when Samsung or LG decide not to support that platform anymore? It already happens with upgrades to phones and tablets from these and other manufacturers.

          There need to be consumer protection laws in place that state that service/updates will be provided to a date that coincides with the expected lifetime of the device. That length of service needs to be clearly stated on the product. If Sony expects a Smart TV to last 7 years, t

      • Actually no we don't or didn't. Mine was working fine this morning. At least the alarm features were. The Slashdot and other news feeds weren't working and I suspected something like this. But was not aware that my Alarm clock is about to fail.
        • by Jhon ( 241832 )

          Dont turn it off. If you do it wont come back until (or if) sony gets their service back up.

    • by Anonymous Coward

      Classic "Connected" Internet devices that ran widgets to display things like weather and news on a small screen. Chumby was the Arduino of it's era - it was all over the tech sites, and everyone thought that they would revolutionize information-at-a-glance. DASH was Sony's attempt to use the Chumby software on their own devices - they were nowhere near as popular.

      • So it's a locked down tablet, without any of the interactive use of a tablet.

        Yeah, can't see why that didn't take off.

    • by SeaFox ( 739806 )

      WTF is DASH? Or Chumby?
      Following the link leads me to believe it's like a Palm Audrey 2.0?

      What's a Palm Audrey 2.0?

    • Dash is a bunch of lunatic camel-jockeys. A chumby is someone who wants electricity, but doesn't want a power station near him.

  • by Overzeetop ( 214511 ) on Thursday March 17, 2016 @08:01AM (#51713949) Journal

    It seems like we're looking at the end of the platform, I guess. I suppose Dice and Beta officially made the site unreadable, or just superfluous for most users. Scrolling down the front page I see stories with nearly all the comment totals in double digits. The "active" story is about the hot-button US Supreme Court nomination fight with 279 comments. Three years ago, it would have been 1500.

    I suppose 18 years (17 for me; I started reading in '98) is a good run in the internet age, but it's kind of sad to see it go.

    • by gweihir ( 88907 ) on Thursday March 17, 2016 @08:28AM (#51714077)

      I would comment on that, but somehow I do not find the motivation for it.

    • by Rob MacDonald ( 3394145 ) on Thursday March 17, 2016 @08:37AM (#51714121)
      The slide started long before the acquisition. But you know what's worse? No, not the apps apper apps mooo moo douche. No. What's worse is people moaning and whining about the good old days. This is the logical extension of trying to host essentially a forum for discussion, and make money from it. This is what it becomes. Be thankful people still actually mod this at all.
      • What's worse is people moaning and whining about the good old days.

        Nostalgia's not as good as it used to be.

        Not that you'd know...

    • by gsslay ( 807818 )

      I suppose Dice and Beta officially made the site unreadable

      officially = "in my opinion".

      • by gsslay ( 807818 )

        Replying to my own comment because I hit submit at the wrong time :(

        What is "officially" making this site unreadable is its interface from last decade and the screaming dinosaurs who can't conceive of it being any other way.

        For god sake, slashdot is still stuck in technology that logs you out every time you open a post assigned to a different sub-domain than your previous log in, including the root domain. That was something that broke years ago because it was a security hole. But we still have it. What

        • I've experienced that ("can't stay logged in") recently. It was really starting to piss me off. "How can this be so broken?" "Why isn't anyone else complaining about it?" .... oh the old Windows 98, IE fix-for-everything that starts with, "clear your cookies" dude (at least the /. ones).
        • by AmiMoJo ( 196126 )

          Can you suggest a site that has a better discussion system and UI than Slashdot? I don't know of any.

          The interface is basic but functional and easy on the eye. High contrast, focus on the text, predictable layout, respects your font choices etc.

          I don't have the subdomain login issue either. What combination of privacy-enhancing browser plugins are you using? I've got uBlock Origin, Privacy Badger and Vanilla.

          • I would think a slider of some sort to filter by time|date might be a valid update. While perusing the /. comments once is generally better than most sites - unlike a forum or other platform, the same cannot be said when you are reading the /. comments again. Without the ability to sort by date or refilter the comments its really not as good as a forum that allows you to see chronological order, and read the most recent comments.

            I've also seen, on numerous occasions, where I cannot even find my own commen
      • Okay, maybe it's not official, but I expect Netcraft to confirm it any day now.

      • by sjames ( 1099 )

        What do you expect from someone with an onion tied to his belt?

    • by AmiMoJo ( 196126 )

      It seems to have noticeably dropped this week, despite the positive comments on the "state of Slashdot" thread. I had wondered if it was some kind of US holiday or something.

      What is it that is putting people off commenting now? For me it seems great, apart from the occasional and quickly fixed issue with the site's code. Well, maybe there needs to be some more variety in the stories, and all the social issue ones seem to have gone which is a shame.

      • Today is St Patricks day! But I think the issue is that Slashdot has lost its focus: it used to be a site for hardcore (tech) news for nerds that mattered. Now it is mostly blogspam for people that have issues with education and H1B (theodp) and Hothardware and Ethan Siegel and stuff like this.
        • by AmiMoJo ( 196126 )

          That's because people bitch and moan about all the hardcore tech stuff, meaning we only get the mainstream stuff now. There is lots of interesting and exciting stuff in tech...

          Electric vehicles - useless crap, can't do 10,000 miles per charge, batteries need replacing every 6 months
          CPU architectures - everything that doesn't have "intel" written on it is crap, and intel is full of spyware
          Windows - installs Windows 10 on your abacus, any useful info will be down-modded
          Linux - it's like we aren't even trying

          • by zarr ( 724629 )
            Nice summary. I might just print this out and stick it to my wall. That way I'll never have to come back here again.
      • by thegarbz ( 1787294 ) on Thursday March 17, 2016 @09:40AM (#51714511)

        It seems to have noticeably dropped this week, despite the positive comments on the "state of Slashdot" thread.

        Given that half of the comments are bitching and moaning about Slashdot itself, now that the problems are getting fixed there a good portion of commenters being disenfranchised.

      • The mobile login wasn't working for about a few days which probably didn't help.

      • I think that they lost a lot of the hardcore tech crowd, and it's tough to get them back. When I started reading around the mid nineties it was full of absolute experts in their domain. When I was in college in the early 2000's and going through my coursework, I commented (via another account I lost) all the time, and had great discussions about the intricacies of processor pipeline strategies, pre-fetching, assembly code hacks, nitty gritty details of compiler optimizations, and so on. Now I just don't
      • all the social issue ones seem to have gone which is a shame

        How many cisfemale programmers did they create? How many cisfemales installed Linux from Scratch to get practical experience with how an operating system is put together from individual software packages?

        When all the evil assigned male rapists no longer have interest in continuing to take abuse from people like you just to make an average, median wage, will that help the cisfemale hunnies?

        I don't think it will. At least after leaving tech, I'll never again need to hear about how I'm keeping your cisgender

    • All the regulars are unable to post because their PCs keep upgrading to Windows 10 all by themselves, and their Linux machines no longer work and they're unable to diagnose the problems because systemd has discarded all the errors sent to stderr.

      That said, there is hope. A Kickstarter, funded using Bitcoins, has been created that seeks to resolve the problem by increasing the number of women posting to Slashdot.

      Hey, I know, maybe the reason there are fewer Slashdot commentators is that we have nothing

    • And it's still better than the wasteland circle-jerk called Reddit.

    • Personally I realized I had nothing left to say. (Other than this I guess!)

      - The next president is going to be Trump or Clinton. Either way we lose.

      - The more you know about tech, the less social status you have.

      - If you were assigned the male gender at birth and you're into tech, you're a sexual harasser, a creep, and a misogynist automatically. I guess whatever. I still don't see how cisgendered women can contribute anything of value. They want me to believe I'm keeping women out of tech? Whatever.

  • Former Owner (Score:5, Informative)

    by WoodburyMan ( 1288090 ) on Thursday March 17, 2016 @08:08AM (#51713979)
    I had one of these back in 2010-2011 or so. First device I actually ran Netflix on. Chumby was a brand of "Smart" internet ready smart alarm clocks. They had basic functions, and 3rd party apps you could install such as Netflix, or different clock faces, etc. Very long end devices. Sony used the Chumby OS and made their own branded versions of these clocks, Sony Dash. I ditched mine back in 2013-2014 or so once I saw a post somewhere showing Sony was discontinueing the platform. I knew it was a matter of time until they killed the services and I was not risking this. Instead I set up a old Android tablet to use as a alarm clock. Works well.
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by AmiMoJo ( 196126 )

      About a decade ago Sony sold my friend a DVR. The advantage of their model was that it got the programme guide (EPG) over the internet, which gave you much longer range and could cope with things being rescheduled etc. After three years they discontinued the EPG service due to some kind of fall out with the EPG provider, and the device was basically a brick. You could program it manually, but it was painful. My friend got a 25% refund from the shop and bought a different manufacturer's model.

      Lesson learned,

      • Re:Former Owner (Score:4, Interesting)

        by Megane ( 129182 ) on Thursday March 17, 2016 @09:44AM (#51714529) Homepage

        That was due to Rovi (formerly known as Macrovisiion, so no stranger to annoying consumers) decided to shut down the OTA version of the TVGOS [] service. And not just shut it down, but yank it from the world. They demanded the hardware back from stations, who might otherwise have left it running just for the clock. So while it wasn't technically bricked, the usefulness of a DVR without a working clock is very near zero.

        The problem was that Sony, in their infinite arro...wisdom decided that TVGOS would be the only way to set the clock for their DVR. There was no manual clock setting option. Nobody discontinues products like Sony, and their DVR was already discontinued when this happened, so no updates were provided.

        I personally had a ChannelMaster CM7000PAL DVR at this time. I can say that the TVGOS service with its 14 days of guide info was awesome, but that particular DVR also supported using the ATSC guide data, and the clock could be set manually. It was flaky (show descriptions would go to the wrong show, which also happens on my MythTV, but I insist on using the OTA guide data and someday I'll figure out the problems) and most stations only put up 12 hours of data because apparently some TV sets had crappy guide implementations that would freak out with too much data. But it still worked, unlike the Sony.

        • Isn't it much easier to have other people record the show and trim the ads for you, and then you just download the torrent later?

          • No, because they use the wrong codecs, leave the black bars on, don't set the size to a multiple of 16 and (which they also spell wrong) and don't pad episode numbers with leading zeroes so 11 plays before 2.

            The rotten fucking bastards.

        • My question: if you're already going to the Internet for the guide data, what the hell is wrong with NTP?

          I hate it when a company decides they know better than the rest of the world and make a square wheel, and then weld it to the hub.

      • I guess I'm not sure why anyone buys Sony products after the long list of ways that they've let their customers discover the length, width, and breadth of the shaft. It's not like this is the first, second, third, or even fourth time.

        Between the preference for in-house proprietary crap at the expense of industry standard, the draconian DRM, the revoked promises, early termination of supporting services, and auto-installing rootkits it is baffling to me that anyone still buys anything they make. And they w

    • Really wondering why one would want a tablet for alarm clock. Or are you all really so nice to your alarm clock when it rings in the morning? I for one am quite happy that I can just have my hand land on it without too much control and it stops. Stick out hand in the approximate direction the sound comes from and drop it. Thrown it off the cabinet on the floor a few times in the process as well. Wouldn't want to do all that to a tablet.

      • I have my old phone/tablet in a Hale Dreamer dock. [] It provides a easy to press "Shut the hell up I'm awake I'm awake" button as well as volume and brightness dials. Likewise.. its an old Galaxy Tab 2 7". If it died, it wouldn't be the worst thing. I forgot in between I actually ran an Archos Home Connect 35. It ran Android 2.2.1. Had a decent speaker. Alas the small battery (so your alarm would still go off if you lost power) decided to expand and bloat and break the plast
  • If memory serves... (Score:5, Informative)

    by fuzzyfuzzyfungus ( 1223518 ) on Thursday March 17, 2016 @08:10AM (#51713983) Journal
    Chumby was one of Bunnie Huang's [] projects(of xbox hacking fame back in the day); and it was notably OSS-y and user accessible by the standards of consumer electronics. Best Buy briefly had their own chumby-based product("Insignia Infocast 8") and I picked one up a while back when they were on sale. The features weren't on by default; but you could poke a couple of menu items to start up SSH right out of the box; and the device used a microSD card for firmware, making experimentation with custom builds low-risk and fairly painless.

    [i]However[/i] Sony's version, unlike all the other chumby variants, was markedly more closed because Sony included some video playback features that they didn't want people getting their filthy hands on. I think that, for that reason, their hardware was among the nicest/fastest of any of the chumby devices; but also the most hostile to user tinkering. That makes Sony terminating their support likely to sting even harder.

    That said, I'm a bit surprised that the hammer didn't fall sooner: the chumby was a neat device; but it came out not too long before Android started showing up all over the place and at increasingly low price points, at which point the similar-role-but-vastly-tinier-ecosystem chumby really had no hope of survival or niche to occupy. I still use mine, it has served me well; but if I were buying today the combination of ubiquitous and cheap Android-things and the post-rPi crazy cheap dev boards would certainly rule it out. Dick move on Sony's part(non-Sony chumby units are still working fine); but not a total surprise.
    • It makes you wonder why people were dumb enough to not think that Sony would fuck them squarely in the ass. They could have bought the same thing from someone else, if only they had been willing to live with slightly degraded video. Instead, they said "Ooh, Shiny! Surely Sony will never do anything bad!" in spite of their long and hallowed history to the contrary.

      • by Nutria ( 679911 )

        in spite of their long and hallowed history to the contrary.

        Because most people aren't geeks who obsess over this kind of stuff.

        • by Gr8Apes ( 679165 )
          You don't have to be a geek for this, just watch the news channels of Sony getting into one big lawsuit after another, all anti-consumer. It really started decades ago with the CD root kit and hasn't really stopped. I'm pretty sure "Sony" and "good customer service" no longer appear together anywhere, so people should be forewarned.
      • Or they said Ooh, a cheap internet connected alarm clock on Woot!, I need an alarm clock and like things internetty and it pulls the time from the NIST time server and I'll never have to worry about forgetting to move the clock back or forward or it slowly getting off of the accurate time so I'll try it.

        Mine was still working this morning. Waking me to my favorite Pandora channel. Some of the data apps I have had stopped functioning the last couple days but not the base use I had for the device. Now I n
      • by AmiMoJo ( 196126 )

        Most people trust brands like Sony. They probably had a Sony TV that worked well enough, and maybe a Playstation. Their hifi gear is popular and mostly well liked. It's only lately that things have started going badly wrong, with malware infected CDs, feature removal from paid-for products, service discontinuation. Even so, they are winning the current generation console war.

        So when the average person sees a Sony product in a shop they aren't really aware of all the bad stuff Sony does. Chances are the PSN

        • Most people trust brands like Sony. They probably had a Sony TV that worked well enough, and maybe a Playstation.

          Well, Sony TVs were long the best in the industry, and last I checked they were still pretty good, if overpriced. But Playstations? I have had several Playstation devices go into failure modes. Who hasn't had a PSX (original PS, that is) or PSOne refuse to read discs when not inverted?

          Even so, they are winning the current generation console war.

          Microsoft basically forfeited with their attempts to put gamers on lockdown. By the time they backpedaled, earning their console's alternate 180 degree-related moniker, the damage had been done. It's not like they have a good

          • by AmiMoJo ( 196126 )

            Sure, the Playstation has always had issue. PS1 and PS2 both had drive failures, PS3 had overheating issues and feature removal... But compare that to the competition. The Saturn wasn't well supported, and the N64 was underpowered and seemed childish compared to the way Sony pushed the PS1. The Dreamcast never gained enough traction and had some reliability issues too. The XBOX is okay, but the 360 had the massive Red Ring of Death problem.

            So while Sony gaming hardware sucked, it sucked slightly less than t

          • But Playstations? I have had several Playstation devices go into failure modes. Who hasn't had a PSX (original PS, that is) or PSOne refuse to read discs when not inverted?

            PlayStation yes, but not the PSone.

            I've had a couple of early model PS2's go DRE, though not the 50001 model (those are built like tanks...and about as heavy as a tank if you have an HDD in it)

            My CECHE model PS3 had graphics glitching and freezing issues. There was one game that would freeze at the same spot every time. (FFX remaster) Sony fixed it

            I bought a used OLED Vita, it had intermittent twitchy touchscreen issues. I've sent it in. SCEA charges more to fix Vitas than PS3's.

  • by ThePhish ( 154000 ) on Thursday March 17, 2016 @08:22AM (#51714049)

    I'm sure that one bloke who missed work that day because of his niche product not working, due to some large multinational company decided to cut losses is going to be very happy Timothy made him front-page famous on the Slashdots.

    "...we must avoid clinging to the edifice of a decadent past" doesn't seem to apply to a knockoff product of something that was popular between tuesday night and a wednesday morning, half a dozen years ago.

    • by AmiMoJo ( 196126 )

      It's notable because the device was so reliant on the server that even basic, non-connected features like the alarm clock failed. High tech alarm clock failures are themselves something fairly new and interesting, as Apple users will tell you. Stuff that used to be simple and just work seems to have regressed.

      • And what is more amazing, is that none of these uber geeks with their Sony toys know how to do a port forward in their home router to a regular time server.
  • by merky1 ( 83978 ) on Thursday March 17, 2016 @08:54AM (#51714239) Journal

    In the end, the Dash was killed by the decision to support DRM that required a server side component. This would always wind up costing Sony more to support than the device would ever make. That and the rise of landfill android, and suddenly there was no reason to buy a Dash.

  • Welcome to my world. It is seriously pissing me off having to write through the analogue hole for my audio masters because fucking Sony decided it no longer needed to even try and leave Sonicstage users with a fucking functional USB driver!

  • I also have a Chumby one.

    I believe my wife is personally responsible for a Dash update. My Dash actually got a Firmware update a little over a month ago - which surprised the shit out of me considering I pretty much knew it was running on life support. In fact I kept an eye on my Abe Vigoda status - it declared him alive even while in dead state and unlike to achieve alive again.

    As for the update - I don't really believe in streaming music. Yes, I'm one of those weirdo's who has a huge CD collection, I buy CD's, rip and compress them to OGG and rarely stream music, and that being said I have a huge video library also.

    My wife does not have this particular way of looking at the world, around November or so she saw the Pandora app on while I was messing with my Dash and got all excited. "I didn't know that was on there!" She's been streaming for many hours each day while I'm at work, somewhere between four and ten hours a day I'm guessing. She loved the Dash because it didn't have the "We don't like playing to an empty room" thing going on. Guess what was the only change I could find after the recent firmware update?

    As for my Chumby One - when Chumby quit working some recent years back I found Chumby offline firmware, downloaded the apps I liked from the Sony Dash site, FTPed them over to my Chumby and that was working until the power supply quit. I still need to get a new supply.

    • Wait what, you can FTP to a Chumby?

      While I have heard of the Chumby I hadn't heard of the Dash.

      • The Chumby can be thought of as a primitive ancestor of the Raspberry Pi. There's internal storage on an SD card, it can boot to USB, all sorts of stuff, it was ahead of its time. I'm really surprised it didn't get a bigger following than it had, it really was an awesome little unit.

  • by Ungrounded Lightning ( 62228 ) on Thursday March 17, 2016 @10:06AM (#51714671) Journal

    Reminds me of Niven's _The Magic Goes Away_ - where at one point the protagonists are using a magically-stiffened-and-driven cloud for cross-country transport and are concerned about what happens to them if they hit a place in the sky where the "mana" is used up...

    "Where are you on a cloud when the magic goes away?"

    Where are you on a cloud SERVICE when the magic goes away?

    Perhaps a few incidents like this will start people wondering why you would ever use a cloud service for something mission-critical - or for anything -in the first place?

    • by Jhon ( 241832 )

      "Where are you on a cloud SERVICE when the magic goes away?"

      With an alarm clock. That's the way it DOES work. The problem is that *IF* it has internet access but cannot reach 'home' is locks as described in the article -- it's a stupid fail that no user would expect. Shut off the power, disable your home wifi, restart and POOF, it boots to just the alarm clock. You get an annoying "network" message but it will wake you up when you want it to.

  • Apparently only affects only one of Sony's Dash models: []

  • Late to work because of your electronic device being unable to connect to a server?

    Buy a fucking battery-backup manual alarm clock like a real person.

  • I had never heard of a Sony DASH until now. I had to look it up on a few sites and read some reviews to make sure I understood what it is. I like the concept and in my own way am in fact employing it right now. So this is effectively an Android tablet with some nice software that turns it into a dedicated use device, even if as a single purpose device that purpose encompasses employing a set of features through a single software interface. I would purchase one of these under two circumstances. 1. It was no
  • The entire Personal Computing revolution was the ability to work WITHOUT a remote server, in contrast to the dumb-terminal/remote-mainframe paradigm that had been the only game in town. Total reliance on a remote server (when there is local intelligence) is abysmally stupid - it's not even reasonable DRM for local features like a clock to fail. (Yes, I'm willing to put up with "reasonable" DRM for subscription services just like I pay for my dead-tree magazine subscriptions, politically incorrect, so sorr
  • So you just noticed that your tethered toy only works as long as your master considers it useful for him to let you have it?

    Maybe we should tell you not to touch the stove? Or that water is wet? Or is there something else that's obvious that you don't know yet?

  • My work day was too long to get THIS article on that screen [] but my Chuck Norris Facts and Confucius Say still plays.

  • Requires a USB key to apply the update via the bootloader. I had to do a factory reset after in order to get mine to download the control panel.

Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from a rigged demo.