Oops! Somebody Goofed

I am never more amazed than when a worldwide company does something that is a clear mistake, because, you would think that with more notoriety would come more care in mass communication. Still it happens very often, and this time it comes from Sony.

A small bit from  slashdot tells about the bricking of the machines, but gives no specifics about which are the ones affected -

"A controversial update which was seeded by Sony in order to remove the ability to run Linux on the Playstation 3 games console has caused a storm of complaints. The 3.21 firmware upgrade, which removes the security hole provided by the ‘Install Other OS’ widget used by lots of educational institutions and hackers alike, also removes the console’s ability to play games… turning it into a very expensive doorstop."

Adrian Kingsley-Hughes, from ZDNet, thought it was a big enough thing to speak of it in his column today -

The latest PlayStation 3 update released by Sony is causing a barrage of complaints from users.

The 3.21 firmware upgrade, which amongst other things removes the “Install Other OS” feature, seems to be bricking some older consoles. Other users complain that the update doesn’t complete properly, that certain controllers no longer work, that Internet connectivity is slowed down to a snail’s pace, HDMI not working at some resolutions, and inability to connect to the PlayStation Network.

My advice, if you can avoid this update, do so.

These are the sort of problems that happen when the users try to hack the machines. Since it is coming from Sony, however, the repairs should be covered completely by them.

I am coming from this as someone that really does not play games, but as a consumer, I have always thought that consoles have a very low warranty period for the price charged. The problems had by my son, a very careful person, and not simply because he is mine, seem far more than should have been encountered by technology that, by now, should be almost bulletproof barring physical harm.

I have observed the many problems with consoles that my son, and his friends have owned, and things like the “red-ring of death” on various Xbox 360s are enough to make me know I would not buy one until the various problems were repaired and chronicled as such.

But then, the young tend to lack the wisdom acquired by making mistakes over time, and I believe that the various console companies are counting on that, as much as they count on a parent’s wishes to please their children.

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I do not see any other way of realizing our hopes about World Organization in five or six days. Even the Almighty took seven.

Winston Churchill

Given our lack of omnipotence, it may take a good deal longer…

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