I got a letter today.
I'm disappointed that they didn't use the Organization Name in their letter (see whois
- page one (167k)
- page two (36k)
I also don't understand why they have taken the position that my software damages their service somehow. They do not
support Linux. I assume they make their money by charging for referrals from barcode scans, at least in part. My software
allowed Linux users to do the same thing Windows users can. It seems to me I was giving them business they would not have
otherwise gotten. Combine this with the MPAA/DeCSS ruling and I'm beginning to think we're headed into a new age where
private property is abolished -- but instead of everything being owned by the state, it will be owned by corporations.
They will tell you exactly how and where you will be allowed to use the things you have, and what you have to pay to do
Oh, yay. And the Founding Fathers roll in their graves. Again. Which country do I live in again? One of those statist
hellholes, but with better roads and more TV, apparently.
When I got my LawyerLetter, the software translated output of the CueCat into useable barcode data. I had a Gnome
Panel applet that would make Netscape go to the Amazon page for a book, if you scanned an ISBN number. A number of my
friends and people who write me via email were looking forward to cataloging their book collections with the aid of my
software. One friend buys about $10,000 in books a year. Hand-listing everything for insurance will be nearly impossible
for him alone. But scanning in barcodes would have made it quick and easy. But these uses of the CueCat barcode reader
are not allowed, apparently. Forget the fact that they gave it to me and I own it.
I do intend to sort out the problem, and make the software available again. Hopefully it's just a misunderstanding.
Update Sept 1, 2000 1:23 pm
I've recieved numerous requests for copies and to host mirrors. I *really* appreciate everyone's support
and offers for assistance. Right now I'm not giving copies out to avoid opening a whole second can of
legal whoopass on myself without realizing it. Once I'm advised by a lawyer as to how to proceed, I'll
take some action. Thanks!
Write me and tell me what you think.