Intel selling crippled CPUs

Via Intel is now selling crippled CPUs that can be ‘upgraded’ through the purchase of scratch cards (!) with a code. That code can be entered in the BIOS of the computer, thus unlocking additional horsepower.

I’m running out of CPU – quick, head over to the corner store for an Intel scratch card!

Is this an alternate universe? And, how long before they sell cards that will unlock extra features, but only for a limited time?

I guess now we know at least one concrete reason why Intel does not like coreboot. You can’t restrict people like this when their computer does not have a proprietary BIOS.

Patent Absurdity: how software patents broke the system

The Free Software Foundation has funded a documentary about the folly of software patents, titled Patent Absurdity: how software patents broke the system. The film is available in Ogg Theora format. If you have a modern browser (Firefox, Chrome, etc) it will play embedded in your browser thanks to HTML 5′s video tag. If you are stuck with IE, you can just download VLC to watch it. The film is also available for download and as a torrent. It is just under 29 minutes long, and highly recommended. As a personal note – it’s awesome to see the FSF bring together two of its campaigns, End Software Patents and PlayOgg, while staying true to its founding principles: the film was produced entirely with free software.

CF iPod conversion to FAT32

In order to install Rockbox on an iPod, it needs to be formatted in FAT32, not HFS+. The relevant wiki page over at the Rockbox site suggest either connecting the iPod to an iTunes install on Windows, or using one of the bootsectors they have available for download from that page.

Those boot sectors assume your iPod has one of the factory disks installed. I’ve got an old 4th gen iPod that I converted to compact flash after its disk died. It happens to have an 8G CF card in there.

Since I don’t do Windows, I downloaded the 20G 4th gen bootsector, put that on the iPod, and used fdisk to change the size of the FAT32 partition. And that worked fine.