Liberate Your iPod

I had the idea for an iPod liberation event several months ago. The idea is something similar to a GNU/Linux install-fest but for Digital Audio Players with RockBox and iPodLinux. Installers gain the ability to play Vorbis and FLAC (among many other things) and lose the ability to do DRM. I would never recommend buying an iPod but we need to face the fact that there are millions of these things now. A good reinstall with a free and open platform seems like a good start.

With the help of Harvard Free Culture, Defective By Design, and Computing Counter-Culture (my recently renamed research group at the MIT Media Lab), I’ve finally got around to organizing an event.

If you’re in the Cambridge/Boston area this Friday evening (October 6) and want to liberate your iPod, you should read the details and show up. If you’ve already liberated your iPod and would like to help others with theirs, you should bring a laptop and get there a bit early.

More information is available on the Harvard Free Culture website.

10 Replies to “Liberate Your iPod”

  1. Low battery life is not the only problem with either RockBox or iPodLinux. Nobody is going to hide problems associated with this, but the point to help people that want to do it. The bootloader install is at least a dual boot — so nobody locks themselves out of the Apple firmware unless they want to.

    Switching to Linux isn’t just roses either if you’ll recall.

  2. Honestly, I tried those two.. ipodlinux and rockbox.

    It took my playing time to 1/3rd or less.  If you have a picture, I’d imagine it drops further.  Yes, playing Ogg and Flac is nice.  But.. man, I don’t really care to have only an hour or so of music.  I’ll just use apple’s firmware and learn not to buy a DRM’d media player in the future.

  3. Ah.

    You’re looking at the times for just your basic screen.  If you have different displays, or more plugins, your time goes down.  Okay, yeah, an hour was a bit “dramatic license.”  It’s more like around a third of the time the Ipod runs when you have a few plugins going.  I don’t know how they even got that high 11 hour mark.. The best I’ve done is about 9 hours.

  4. Well, it’s certainly <a title=”Simulator screenshot.” href=””>pretty enough</a> for me.

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