Author Topic: Restricting Access or Repair Of Customer Owned Equipment Ethical?  (Read 6370 times)

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Offline Dawn

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Restricting Access or Repair Of Customer Owned Equipment Ethical?
« on: September 10, 2012, 07:42:34 am »
This is one to ponder. There's plenty of obvious and good reasons for tamper proof fasteners from protecting rented equipment to protection from theft and plenty of reasons in between such as regulatory. During my early years in the communication service, it was mandated law that an unlicenesed, end user couldn't have access to a transmitter. That made good sense and the radios either had chassis locks or locked into a trunion to prevent removal. It wasn't there to keep non-factory approved techs out and maintain a proprietary control over who could service it. Keys and parts were available from any dealer or the companies. In fact, under US law, the repairing technician that last worked on the unit was responible for it's proper operation, not the end user until the 80's seen deregulation. During that same period of time between the mid 70's and early 80's, there were many precedents set that courts affirmed end user/owner rights and many were grounded in the laws restricting free trade and public access. If you operated a shop that was open to the public, you couldn't arbitrarily restrict sales of transmitters , power tubes and transistors, etc. to someone that you knew damn well was going to use them illegally.  That reasoning carried it's way to security or proprietary fasteners restricting service choices and sales of parts to non-approved parties. Those cases made it clear that unless there was some very valid reason such as a cable box rental, you couldn't restrict someone from opening or servicing their own, fully paid for equipment or restrict access to parts and a basic schematic or service diagram.

The practice did continue in some cases with justification that the tools were freely available on the retail market if you really wanted to get inside and the manufactuer had no control or interest in keeping you out, often citing safety and saving you from yourself from being injured. If you did go beyond the fastener, rivet or safety seal, you had been warned and the manufactuer was indemnified from litigation if you were injured.

That's the way it was in the states up to 90's. AFAIK, there hasn't been any changes to law otherwise. Now, it's not uncomon to hear that someone has taken in a smartphone or laptop for service and received it back with propritary fasteners or the purchased product already came with them installed like A**le has done with their P*nt*l*be fasteners. Some of the fastener companies are standing their ground with the claim that the fasteners are licenesed and the end user or service center can't purchase tools or bits unless entering into a license agreement with them and the original owner.  It's bad enough that many companies have been flouting the requirements for parts and a basic schematic or diagram with the reasoning that the boards or internals were not made to be repaired and just replaced. Now, they are restricting access or tampering with products you already own to make them unserviceable by anyone except themselves. There's no shortage of EULA's that attempt to enforce any attempt at reverse engineering or deeming the firmawre or software in a device essentially rented even if you outright own it and prevent you from selling the device becasue they retain rights to the firmware. DRM is an issue that I'm not even going to touch.

I don't know how this plays outside the states, but there doesn't seem to be much of a fuss or any attempts on a legal challenge here. It's a crying shame that so much useable and repairable equipment is ending up in landfills simply because the companies don't want it to be serviced unless they can make a profit and dictate it's end of life. It's not only enviormentally unsound, it's restrictive of the remaining service economy. Nobody makes anything here anymore, so the only sector of the economy that's left is service. That too is increasingly being made near impossible.   
 

Offline Rerouter

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Re: Restricting Access or Repair Of Customer Owned Equipment Ethical?
« Reply #1 on: September 10, 2012, 08:03:10 am »
having parts and schematics available is an absolute laugh, more so on the schematic side, as if most of us had access to them we could bodge in close enough replacements, still the propriatry fasteneres give me a laugh some times, also i do not understand how you can place a licencing agreement on opening a screw? but then again that would be buried in the saga of a EULA, (i personally hate any that are longer than 2 pages)

still everything i own at one point or another i generally open, and the amount of tamperproof fasterners that can be overcome with a flathead screwdriver with a nick or a bend in it is just hilarious, even one way screws can be undone though are much more difficult,

but i suppose my realy pet peeve is the "no user servicable parts" in things with a fuse or at a more advanced case a mov visible through the vents, such easy things to fix, and instead we are just expect to bin them, while i suppose average joe could zap himself, should the label not be enough of a deterent for them?
 

Offline poorchava

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Re: Restricting Access or Repair Of Customer Owned Equipment Ethical?
« Reply #2 on: September 10, 2012, 08:32:49 am »
I often open such stuff (both for repair and salvaging parts). For computers and portable devices, especially those from major companies you can buy special screwdriver/bit sets where you can find a tip for probably every screw.

And for the ones that you can't buy a tool, you can make one yourself. just get an odrinary screw, a dremel and a file and in like 10 minutes you can hack probably any tool needed.
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Offline Dawn

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Re: Restricting Access or Repair Of Customer Owned Equipment Ethical?
« Reply #3 on: September 10, 2012, 10:14:55 am »
Bear in mind that I'm referring to service of customer's equipment for the most part. Sure you can cut a slot or drill out a fastener, but you can't pull that off as a service center as there is too much potential for damage or the time quotient to painstakingly drill out a M2 or so sized recessed and countersunk screw out of a laptop or mobile device.

 

Offline madires

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Re: Restricting Access or Repair Of Customer Owned Equipment Ethical?
« Reply #4 on: September 10, 2012, 11:09:44 am »
I don't know how this plays outside the states, but there doesn't seem to be much of a fuss or any attempts on a legal challenge here. It's a crying shame that so much useable and repairable equipment is ending up in landfills simply because the companies don't want it to be serviced unless they can make a profit and dictate it's end of life. It's not only enviormentally unsound, it's restrictive of the remaining service economy. Nobody makes anything here anymore, so the only sector of the economy that's left is service. That too is increasingly being made near impossible.

That planned obsolescence is great for businesses in the short term. But people look for alternatives. And since natural ressources for rare earths and so on are limited, companies will have to start digging up the old landfills to recycle electronics in the future, because it will become economically feasable. And I won't be suprised if some EU countries will enforce that stuff has to be designed being simple to repair and recycle.

Over here we got a lot of that planned obsolescence junk too :-( But you may reverse engineer stuff, and companies are limited in what they can enforce in an EULA for consumers.
 

Offline bullet308

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Re: Restricting Access or Repair Of Customer Owned Equipment Ethical?
« Reply #5 on: September 10, 2012, 11:50:59 am »
I am working on various approaches to using open hardware designs in a commercial product. By the logic of that approach, the customer owns the design every bit as much as I do and I figure I have to make the schematics available, at a minimum. I take no issue with that, and would do so anyway, as this product would actually be expected to last a pretty long time.

However, I want to offer a, say, one year limited warranty with the product, and don't want to have to fix what they break by screwing around with it, as the circuit is a bit touchy. But, long-term user serviceability is desirable as a marketing feature.

Solution: the unit ships sealed, with standard screws to secure it but with a dab of epoxy covering them.  Warranty Void if Broken. I dont see any problem with that. You own it and have a right to do as you will with it, but I shouldn't be expected to fix on demand whatever the average fumble-fingers makes a mess of on. After the one-year mark, have at it. 
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Offline free_electron

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Re: Restricting Access or Repair Of Customer Owned Equipment Ethical?
« Reply #6 on: September 10, 2012, 02:32:42 pm »
Lets take that apple thingie. What do you think you will be able to repair in such a phone ?
First of all , they are almost all custom chips and unobtainable.
Second, microbga, flipchip and underfilled. So desoldering is also a no-go.
The battery ? Why muck about with the wingpangpong battery that may blow up in your face... Apple will do it for you at a reasonable price.

So what else is there to repair in this thing ? Nothing.
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Offline 8086

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Re: Restricting Access or Repair Of Customer Owned Equipment Ethical?
« Reply #7 on: September 10, 2012, 02:35:34 pm »
To me, tamper-evident is fine, I shouldn't expect to have a warranty if I don't stick to their terms.

Tamper-proof, however, is not fine. I expect to be able to do what I want with my property.
 

Offline AntiProtonBoy

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Re: Restricting Access or Repair Of Customer Owned Equipment Ethical?
« Reply #8 on: September 10, 2012, 02:59:18 pm »
I think the bigger concern here is not so much the repairability, but your ability to hack the device (particularly via software) and use it however you see fit. Most DRM schemes are specifically designed to inhibit your right to use products outside the manufacturer's marketing strategy. Elaborate EULA clauses and the threat of warranty revocation are essentially weapons for keeping end users hostage to the device they bought with their own money. This is unethical.

 

Offline T4P

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Re: Restricting Access or Repair Of Customer Owned Equipment Ethical?
« Reply #9 on: September 10, 2012, 03:47:56 pm »
Lets take that apple thingie. What do you think you will be able to repair in such a phone ?
First of all , they are almost all custom chips and unobtainable.
Second, microbga, flipchip and underfilled. So desoldering is also a no-go.
The battery ? Why muck about with the wingpangpong battery that may blow up in your face... Apple will do it for you at a reasonable price.

So what else is there to repair in this thing ? Nothing.

Except that you can find the same battery for 10bucks
 

Offline free_electron

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Re: Restricting Access or Repair Of Customer Owned Equipment Ethical?
« Reply #10 on: September 10, 2012, 04:20:53 pm »
I think the bigger concern here is not so much the repairability, but your ability to hack the device (particularly via software) and use it however you see fit. Most DRM schemes are specifically designed to inhibit your right to use products outside the manufacturer's marketing strategy. Elaborate EULA clauses and the threat of warranty revocation are essentially weapons for keeping end users hostage to the device they bought with their own money. This is unethical.

i have a question about that.
If you buy a refrigerator : do you want to hack it ? are you complaining to the manufacturer that there are no schematics , source code etc ?
if you buy a microwave : do you want to hack it ? are you complaining to the manufacturer that there are no schematics , source code etc ?
if you buy a tv : do you want to hack it ? are you complaining to the manufacturer that there are no schematics , source code etc ?
so , why this urge to 'hack' an iphone ?

an iphone , or any other apple product for that matter, is an 'appliance'. you use as is. an android system is another matter. apple clearly defines their products as 'appliances'.

if you open that microwave or tv or refrigerator you void the warranty. simple as that. same goes for an apple, or any other product. like it or not, that's the way it is. There are other options out there.

almost any equipment aroudn has a label on it ' no user serviceable parts inside. warranty void if opened.' even a 40 year old chingchong radio from tandy or radio shack has such warning.

now, i do undertand that people want to muck about with things they buy. i do it too, but you have to accept the responsability. you muck it up ? tough luck... suck it up. Manufacturers are not interested in people that want to tinker with their products as it is an additional support headache that brings nothing to their bottom line. It's just another burden and cost factor to them. So they lock you out. simple as that.
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Offline AntiProtonBoy

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Re: Restricting Access or Repair Of Customer Owned Equipment Ethical?
« Reply #11 on: September 11, 2012, 12:53:34 am »
i have a question about that.
If you buy a refrigerator : do you want to hack it ? are you complaining to the manufacturer that there are no schematics , source code etc ?
if you buy a microwave : do you want to hack it ? are you complaining to the manufacturer that there are no schematics , source code etc ?
if you buy a tv : do you want to hack it ? are you complaining to the manufacturer that there are no schematics , source code etc ?
so , why this urge to 'hack' an iphone ?
In each of those scenarios I would want to hack, for sure, and I have in the past. Would I expect schematics/source code? Not really, and I'm not particularly concerned about that.

I totally agree with some of your points; I think warranty revocation is a perfectly reasonable stance when someone physically modifies an appliance and ends up breaking it.

To clarify, my concerns are these:

1. The ability to hack and reverse engineer an appliance and publish your results without legal implications. Currently, such activities are almost always attract cease and desist orders from company lawyers.

2. Software modification for certain hardware, particularly smart pones, are now considered as activities that voids warranty. This is equivalent to voiding your motherboard's warranty, because you dared to run Linux on your machine.

3. Circumvention of DRM; and to a lesser extent, unlocking crippled features in a device can be illegal. Building and selling mods that achieves such circumventions is particularly illegal in some countries. Sometimes repairing a device and getting substitute generic parts would certainly require such circumvention.
« Last Edit: September 11, 2012, 12:55:39 am by AntiProtonBoy »
 

Offline FenderBender

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Re: Restricting Access or Repair Of Customer Owned Equipment Ethical?
« Reply #12 on: September 11, 2012, 03:26:01 am »
I think the point is that the information should be their for the enduser regardless of whether he/she does anything with it. It's YOUR refrigerator. Sure you didn't design it. But people fix their cars all the time and did they design the car? No. Wouldn't it stink if Ford said "Oh you can't replace your oil filter yourself, but you can bring it in to a Ford dealership and get it replaced by one of our technicians for x-amount of money." That's essentially what a lot of manufacturers do/say. They either make the product and do not provide documentation or they make it with a shit-ton of proprietary parts that inhibit you fixing/hacking it.

It's a hard topic to be clear on because there's so many ways to think about it.

One thing I'd like to mention as an example. I guess this was a different time. It was well before my time. I'm 17, born in 1994. I recently picked up a Sharp TV from around 1975. Well bundled right with the TV is a huge amount of documentation. It has the complete schematic. It has an entire list of all the parts used and their values and part numbers. It has a labeled board layout drawing and a whole slew of specifications. When's the last time you've gotten any electronic device with any or all of the above? Probably not very recently. This is probably partly to do with that, as others have said, is the everyday guy going to be replacing a BGA package chip? Or an 0603 resistor. No probably not...but that doesn't mean you have to exclude useful information. Someone might find it useful.

Partly the reason people don't fix their electronics any more is because they think it's so advanced and so that idea just goes right over their heads. 30 years ago, I think people must have seen electronics as just like any other tool or machine. They can be fixed. People these days think electronics are magic. "Oh no, it doesn't turn on, better go buy a new one!". That's the problem. People have a stupid mentality in them about electronics. And it's not necessarily their faults. It's been drilled into them by manufacturers. For example, Apple. I hate to keep on preying on Apple but notice their ads! "Revolutionary, groundbreaking, state of the art" etc etc. No consumer is going to dare play around with one of these devices because it just simply seems too complex based on the adjectives. It's like what a lot of us think of RF. Black magic! It's the force that seemingly drives electronics to become better and better.  :P

Anyway, I do believe that schematics should always be available. Source code..well that's a tricky one, but I'd say it is better that it is shared because if everyone just shared their stuff, technology would probably be progressing 2x the rate. But no we get hung up in lawsuits and other BS.

Well anyway. Rant for the day.
« Last Edit: September 11, 2012, 03:28:08 am by FenderBender »
 

Offline slateraptor

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Re: Restricting Access or Repair Of Customer Owned Equipment Ethical?
« Reply #13 on: September 11, 2012, 03:34:24 am »
It's not only enviormentally unsound, it's restrictive of the remaining service economy. Nobody makes anything here anymore, so the only sector of the economy that's left is service. That too is increasingly being made near impossible.

...then it became clear that the appeal had a bottom feeder vectoralist agenda, which is really no different than the prime vectors the OP argues against.
 

Offline slateraptor

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Re: Restricting Access or Repair Of Customer Owned Equipment Ethical?
« Reply #14 on: September 11, 2012, 03:51:13 am »
I think the point is that the information should be their for the enduser regardless of whether he/she does anything with it.

The argument OP's perspective is clearly vectoralist in nature, viz. an appeal to sustain a leech vector which feeds off sloppy seconds, so to speak.
 

Offline amyk

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Re: Restricting Access or Repair Of Customer Owned Equipment Ethical?
« Reply #15 on: September 11, 2012, 07:49:40 am »
Quote from: free_electron
Lets take that apple thingie. What do you think you will be able to repair in such a phone ?
First of all , they are almost all custom chips and unobtainable.
Second, microbga, flipchip and underfilled. So desoldering is also a no-go.
The battery ? Why muck about with the wingpangpong battery that may blow up in your face... Apple will do it for you at a reasonable price.

So what else is there to repair in this thing ? Nothing.
You'd be amazed at what they do in China. BGA and SMD is easy with hot air gun, and some might say even easier than through-hole. The parts are tiny, but that's what a microscope is for.

i have a question about that.
If you buy a refrigerator : do you want to hack it ? are you complaining to the manufacturer that there are no schematics , source code etc ?
if you buy a microwave : do you want to hack it ? are you complaining to the manufacturer that there are no schematics , source code etc ?
if you buy a tv : do you want to hack it ? are you complaining to the manufacturer that there are no schematics , source code etc ?
so , why this urge to 'hack' an iphone ?
Interesting you say this, because in many cases I've had more luck finding appliance service information, like refrigerator schematics, than iPhone schematics (which are out there FYI). Then again, appliances are usually a lot simpler.
 

Offline madires

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Re: Restricting Access or Repair Of Customer Owned Equipment Ethical?
« Reply #16 on: September 11, 2012, 10:36:48 am »
I think the point is that the information should be their for the enduser regardless of whether he/she does anything with it. It's YOUR refrigerator. Sure you didn't design it. But people fix their cars all the time and did they design the car? No. Wouldn't it stink if Ford said "Oh you can't replace your oil filter yourself, but you can bring it in to a Ford dealership and get it replaced by one of our technicians for x-amount of money." That's essentially what a lot of manufacturers do/say. They either make the product and do not provide documentation or they make it with a shit-ton of proprietary parts that inhibit you fixing/hacking it.

And the repair shops got problems too with optaining the service documentation. Since you're writing about cars, I like to add a lesson learned over here. To increase revenue car manufactures have given documention and special tools just to licensed dealers and garages. Independent garages, less expensive than licensed ones, had nearly no chance to get hold of those docs or tools. After a lot of complainng the EU enforced access to docs and tools for all garages. The car manufactures still try to make it hard for independent garages but the situation has improved quite well.

Quote
One thing I'd like to mention as an example. I guess this was a different time. It was well before my time. I'm 17, born in 1994. I recently picked up a Sharp TV from around 1975. Well bundled right with the TV is a huge amount of documentation. It has the complete schematic. It has an entire list of all the parts used and their values and part numbers. It has a labeled board layout drawing and a whole slew of specifications. When's the last time you've gotten any electronic device with any or all of the above? Probably not very recently. This is probably partly to do with that, as others have said, is the everyday guy going to be replacing a BGA package chip? Or an 0603 resistor. No probably not...but that
doesn't mean you have to exclude useful information. Someone might find it useful.

I bought some lab equipment from a local vendor (re-badges stuff made in Chima) and got all service documention by asking politely via email. Consumers don't need the service manual, but the vendor should provide it by request or free download. IMHO that's the best way to deal with repair shops and savvy users. Last year I bought a new toy with a printed circuit diagram in the box, I was amazed. First I thought it was one of those quick-setup-guides ;-)

Quote
Partly the reason people don't fix their electronics any more is because they think it's so advanced and so that idea just goes right over their heads. 30 years ago, I think people must have seen electronics as just like any other tool or machine. They can be fixed. People these days think electronics are magic. "Oh no, it doesn't turn on, better go buy a new one!". That's the problem. People have a stupid mentality in them about electronics. And it's not necessarily their faults. It's been drilled into them by manufacturers. For example, Apple. I hate to keep on preying on Apple but notice their ads! "Revolutionary, groundbreaking, state of the art" etc etc. No consumer is going to dare play around with one of these devices because it just simply seems too complex based on the adjectives. It's like what a lot of us think of RF. Black magic! It's the force that seemingly drives electronics to become better and better.  :P

Someone with a soldering iron and some knowledge might just be afraid of breaking the toy totally when trying to deal with those tiny components. And most toys are so cheap it's not worth the effort, they think.

Quote
Anyway, I do believe that schematics should always be available. Source code..well that's a tricky one, but I'd say it is better that it is shared because if everyone just shared their stuff, technology would probably be progressing 2x the rate. But no we get hung up in lawsuits and other BS.

We had that in the beginning and I hope we will have it again if people realize that life is not just about making more money. I know, just a dream, but open software and hardware projects show that there's hope.
 

Offline Tepe

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Re: Restricting Access or Repair Of Customer Owned Equipment Ethical?
« Reply #17 on: September 11, 2012, 10:49:53 am »
I'm 17, born in 1994. (...) 30 years ago, I think people must have seen electronics as just like any other tool or machine. They can be fixed. People these days think electronics are magic.
The golden age wasn't 30 years ago. In fact there never really was a golden age. The further back you go, the less likely you were to be able to afford the stuff you were dreaming of.
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Offline G7PSK

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Re: Restricting Access or Repair Of Customer Owned Equipment Ethical?
« Reply #18 on: September 11, 2012, 12:36:25 pm »
To a very large extent the lack of repair information is down to demand for such. It is all down to what it costs for a repair tech. to take something down find the fault repair it and re assemble the item, If you cost the man hours in the west compared to factory hours in the east the east wins it is just not worth while spending half a day at £30 to £60 an hour when the item new only cost £200.
Most of the gear that is sold for radio hams comes with schematic and test data as it is recognized that these people will need such information in order to remain legal and undertake repairs and modifications etc.
 

Offline Dawn

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Re: Restricting Access or Repair Of Customer Owned Equipment Ethical?
« Reply #19 on: September 11, 2012, 03:25:09 pm »
I have to disagree with the concept that gear now is so cheap that it's not worth the repair or obsolete by time it fails. Perhaps that's what the industry wants one to believe or that anything but factory repair/refurburbishment is illegitimate. Anyone working in service would readily attest that a majority of the repairs are obvious, known failures, heat and mechanical in nature, or user abuse. Most any of us on this board know that. No telling how many monitors & mother boards, cell phone screens, BGA reheats, chip reseats, unplugged cables, fuses, etc. that have been restored to operation without a schematic and had the unit been returned for factory service, the price would have been uneconomical due to subunit replacement policies or altogether deemed beyond economic repair. For example, most of the transceiver chassis that I work on, I know the common faults and probably have a 75% chance of repairing them before I have to swap the board that's supposed to be the recommended repair. My hourly rate plus the board, minus the core exchange is significantly cheaper. In many cases the subunit is already beyond support. Junkers and Fleabay buys keep many of my customers going with radios that have long seen support termination that would otherwise cost a new transceiver. That's my bread and butter. I make very little with a board replacement. How many game stations are routinely repaired...there's a whole subindustry of net support. The list goes on. Imagine if we had complete docs? China's street cell phone repair kiosks are testament to this possiblity of repairing the otherwise unrepairables. It's utter nonsense to declare something unrepairable under these circumstances against the cost of something new...especially now with the economy tanking. I'm willing to take on repairs for less then my hourly rate. I'm happy to get the work and the word of mouth that I'm willing to tackle something several shops have turned down or said it was unrepairable. Now put this into context if the equipment I see was secured by proprietary fasteners or they decided to make sure no field repairs are possible by potting the boards.
 

Offline G7PSK

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Re: Restricting Access or Repair Of Customer Owned Equipment Ethical?
« Reply #20 on: September 11, 2012, 05:27:36 pm »
That's all very well to take on repairs at less than your hourly rates and great for people who know about you. But for the ordinary Joe on the street his first port of call is most likely on the high street and charges will be high per hour and the person behind the desk not the works owner therefore he will be charged top whack. So given a quote for repair which is nearly as high as a new piece of equipment with all the latest bells and whistles what is his choice going to be, I know what mine would be.
 

Offline FenderBender

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Re: Restricting Access or Repair Of Customer Owned Equipment Ethical?
« Reply #21 on: September 11, 2012, 11:59:38 pm »
I have to disagree with the concept that gear now is so cheap that it's not worth the repair or obsolete by time it fails. Perhaps that's what the industry wants one to believe or that anything but factory repair/refurburbishment is illegitimate.

Exactly. The industry tells you a lot of things. And they tell it to us so frequently that we are forced to believe it. We are forced to believe that we NEED a new cellphone every year, that our cars are obsolete, that our laptop does not have x-feature, therefore it is irrelevant. But, likewise...we don't technically NEED any of these things in the first place (think cavemen). Sure, most new things are improvement on older things, but that doesn't mean that our older things are necessarily bad...but society doesn't understand that.

"My car is 5 years old, therefore it must be bad". If it is a well engineered device, it never becomes obsolete. Granted, all sorts of new codes and regulations might eventually make it obsolete. "If it aint broke, don't fix it!" My car is a 1993 Dodge Spirit. Sure, not the best looking cars of all time, but hey it still works. It doesn't leak, it gets like 27mpg, and it's actually pretty quick. Just because it's old doesn't mean it's bad.

The industry tell you "Your car sucks! Get a new one, or else! If you don't, you're a loser." Therefore we trade in that 5 year old for that brand new car not because we need it, but because we were told we need it. Same thing with electronics. No one need an iPhone 5, but Apple is going to tell you that you do. The main reason we probably don't get stuff repaired is that manufacturers plan the obsolescence of their device.

You can picture Steve Jobs saying at the iPhone 3G keynote "This is the most revolutionary device of all time. Look how amazing it is!"...and then 12 months later, at the iPhone 4 keynote "Oh so remember that iPhone 3G I was talking about before? Yeah, it sucks. But, we do have this shiny new iPhone 4 which is x-times faster, and x-times better. So yeah, toss that 3G out because only losers have that phone." Rinse and repeat. Rinse and repeat.

I think I've stressed this point enough.  It's not that we really have changed our attitudes on our own, but the industry has pretty much made up our minds for us. It's a no brainer. You HAVE to get the iPhone 5. (According to Apple).

---

Gear is not cheap! Well, good gear that is. Prices I guess have come down, but it's all relative to what was available in that year. If 130nm technology was state of the art and you introduce a product with 90nm, well sure it's going to be more expensive. So sure, we have very powerful machines/computers these days, but we'll look back in 10 years and say, "Wow look how slow those were and how expensive those were". That's kind of a hard argument to make.

And people underestimate that a simple repair job can actually save a lot more money than they anticipate. But they take the easy way out and just get a new one. While they could take that monitor to a repair shop, there's that gleaming new one in the window so might as well get that one. The problem meanwhile could have been solved by replacing a capacitor or an inductor or you name it. Same thing with a car. You think you are saving money by buying a new car because it won't have any problems and won't need to be serviced, right? Well...wrong. How about insurance and then paying off all those loans, yadayadayada...society...
« Last Edit: September 12, 2012, 12:03:58 am by FenderBender »
 

Offline Pentium100

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Re: Restricting Access or Repair Of Customer Owned Equipment Ethical?
« Reply #22 on: September 12, 2012, 12:34:43 am »
My car is a 1993 Dodge Spirit. Sure, not the best looking cars of all time, but hey it still works. It doesn't leak, it gets like 27mpg, and it's actually pretty quick. Just because it's old doesn't mean it's bad.
And my car is 1982 Mercedes W123. It is also "hacked" to run on LPG and uses about 11.5L/100km (and since LPG is about half the price of petrol, it's pretty much the same as a car that uses 5.5L of petrol).

i have a question about that.
If you buy a refrigerator : do you want to hack it ? are you complaining to the manufacturer that there are no schematics , source code etc ?
if you buy a microwave : do you want to hack it ? are you complaining to the manufacturer that there are no schematics , source code etc ?
if you buy a tv : do you want to hack it ? are you complaining to the manufacturer that there are no schematics , source code etc ?
so , why this urge to 'hack' an iphone ?

an iphone , or any other apple product for that matter, is an 'appliance'. you use as is. an android system is another matter. apple clearly defines their products as 'appliances'.

The refrigerator is simple and the schematic is not really needed. As for hacking - I reserve that right for the future, maybe I will need it.
The microwave is also quite simple, see above.
I have the schematics for several of my TVs and monitors. I also repaired one of the TVs (the horizontal deflection transistor was bad, the other TVs work without any problems), it was easier to do it with the schematics. Same with my tape decks, radios and record players.

Do you consider a car tape deck an "appliance" too? Because I hacked mine - I added a line input, so I can connect my MD player (or anything else) if I do not want to listen to a tape or radio (when it's -20C outside it is not that good for tapes). I also hacked a VCR - installed a mod to support PAL D/K (instead of B/G).

See - as the device becomes more complex it may become even more useful with hacking. A refrigerator is simple, there really isn't anything to hack, but a cellphone is essentially a small computer and getting total control over it is useful.

I hate artificial limitations - my tape deck cannot record video, but that's OK, since it would need to be specifically designed to record high frequencies present in a video signal (and that would make it less useful for recording audio), this is a "natural" limitation. On the other hand, imagine a CD player that has both output channels shorted together to make it mono - the manufacturer did additional work to cripple the device, this is an artificial limitation, just like with the iPhone, that's why people want to hack and uncripple such devices.
 

Offline SeanB

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Re: Restricting Access or Repair Of Customer Owned Equipment Ethical?
« Reply #23 on: September 12, 2012, 04:46:18 am »
I will add all microwave ovens I have opened have a circuit diagram inside. Will not be a full one of the electronic controls if there, but it will be the entire electrical wiring and will be correct.
 

Offline AntiProtonBoy

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Re: Restricting Access or Repair Of Customer Owned Equipment Ethical?
« Reply #24 on: September 12, 2012, 05:21:24 am »
And so do most kitchen stoves and ovens.
 


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