Short bio: Computer Scientist, FOSS supporter (read more)
Tux Machines (TM)-specific
Sometime back I gave a pretty strong pan review of a couple of “toys” that were not compatible with GNU/Linux — with open standards really, since the community ensures that free software is compliant — and were therefore nothing more than a disappointment to my kids. Recently, I fully expected to repeat this depressing experience when my brother-in-law gave my son a “Flip” digital video camera, but I was pleasantly surprised: it works exactly as it should. That seemed worth a column in itself.
Too often, I’ve found that low-budget hardware — especially items sold largely as toys for kids — have Windows-dependency built into them at a very low level. For some reason, low-end manufacturers think that it will serve them better to build in rigid dependencies rather than just sticking to open standards.