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Back to Ubuntu again

Posted: December 31st, 1969 | Author: | Filed under: Uncategorized | No Comments »

Back to Ubuntu again

Picture of IrvinI think this time that I am on Ubuntu for good. When I was testing Vista, I thought well, this is better than XP. Really, it is everything that XP should have been. But that was the beta version, before Microsoft let on that they were going to go down the insane DRM path.

First, lets look at this wierd protected video path nonsense. It makes no sense that I have to go out and buy a different monitor with some non-existent DRM to watch video at normal quality levels. Am I really going to go out and buy Men-in-Black and then try to phreak it off my monitor, or hook it up to some loopback to try to make copies? That is ridiculous. So what if I want to rip the movie to play on my PSP. So what if I want to give my friend all 26 GB of the movie in its full splendor. Hello! 26 GB! How am I going to distribute a movie that is 26 GB. By the time that is a trivial folder size, HD will be gone and something else will be in its place. Even if I did, it's not like Hollywood isn't repackaging the same intellectual property from the 30's over and over again. The big studios haven't made an original movie in 50 years. At least nothing to top the movies that came out between 1930 and 1960.

Then there's audio. I don't want crap degrading my audio output, I also don't want my system working hard to try to prevent me from using my stuff the way I want to. I know Microsoft wants to compete with Apple at all costs on the media front, and that means making overhaul level changes to its OS to prevent duplicating content because that is what Hollywood demands, even though they don't understand the problem.

Part of the reason people bootleg is because they have been burned by DRM. Perhaps they bought a bunch of music and their hard drive dies, then they have to buy it all again, or they switch their operating system and they can't use the hundreds of dollars of music they legally purchased. This is ridiculous, and that is why I am getting off this carousel.

I don't bit-torrent. I don't use grokster or anything like that. I think that ripping music to distribute it is illegal. That is why police arrest bootleggers on the street. I truly just want to rip my music off CDs because it is easier to use in that format. I want to rip my movies for the same reason. I don't want to download my movies into some type of digital vault, and then I can't watch them on my TV because it doesn't have the right DRM.

So I am done with Vista, I was done with it before it even came out. I am also done with the iTunes music store. I will burn my music to discs and then rerip the songs to Ubuntu. Caffine is great, it plays everything and without configuration. It is an excellent music player. The Helix player is also great. I am not a big fan of Real, but at least they support the community. They actually get the fact that DRM is stupid.

The Ubuntu install was completely painless, as usual, and was done in about 15 minutes. I was able to restore my backup in about 40 minutes, and was working on my office files after installing Crossover office and Microsoft Office on Linux. Then I downloaded all of the fun software that I like, plus all of my development stuff. I got Java, which actually works on Ubuntu Linux, installed quickly. Basically what I realized was that I wasn't missing anything by not having Windows. Sure I have a couple of PC games that I can't play yet, but soon I will be able to. Besides, that's why I have two video game consoles.

The bottom line is that in truth, the music coming from the indie labels on emusic is of much higher quality than the garbage on the radio performance wise,, or coming out of the studios, and it doesn't have any ignorant DRM scheme attached. I don't really need iTunes, therefore I don't need the DRM. Similarly, I can watch indie videos on atom films, and I can watch video podcasts, I can get by without mainstream media, soon there will be some service where I can download indie movies without stupid DRM, and I don't miss the mainstream garbage.

Really, that is the problem, that the studios are putting out garbage, and they want to protect that garbage by making life difficult for the consumers. Their sales are down, not because of piracy, they are down because their movies are crap, their music is crap, and their DRM is making it worse because it is also crap. But the biggest mystery of all is why most people don't realize that it is crap. But I know why. The studios have done the best they can to bury file swapping, etc… The truth is that they are killing off the file sharing sites not because they are hurting their sales or whatever, really it is because they don't want for artists to be able to easily distribute their work, which is better than the pre-packaged studio crap, without them. More importantly, they don't want for consumers to find out that they have been shovel-fed crap for the last 20 years, and that there is a world of great media just under the surface. A little digging will show you that you don't need that main-stream garbage either.