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CueHack For CueCat Released 97

uqbar writes: "The corporate culture jammers at ®TMark have released Cuehack which takes the CueCat and finds out dirt on the company whose barcode you scanned." It's a Windows app, so I'm not able to run it. Neither do I have a CueCat -- but apps like this make me smile.
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CueHack For CueCat Released

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  • by Anonymous Coward
    I know this is slashdot and the opinions tend to lean toward the radical, but for the life of me I don't understand why. What's so wrong with a company trying to make a buck ? I'm all for open platforms and for freedoms, but at some point you do need to make a profit, if you intend to stay in business that is. These CueCat people might not be the most cluefull on the planet, but I have to question whether they deserve all the attention they get from "hackers" or slashdot in general.

    If you break it down they are just anothere tech company who is looking for a unique idea to make a buck with, they haven't harmed anyone. This seems to just go a bit too far, sure I guess it's within the law, but at what point do we look at our morals and maybe move on from this.
  • .. why?

    Seriously, why do this?

    The Digital Convergence people were nice enough to give away a pretty cool little toy for free, and then what do people do? They turn right around and use this cool toy to bludgeon DC to death. Sometimes I'm ashamed to be a Linux user.

    Yes, I know .. you have the right to reverse engineer things, and anybody who disagrees with that right ought to be marched off to an Evil IP Enthusiast camp for immediate slaughtering. But just because it's not illegal doesn't mean that it should be done. It's not illegal to call your mother unimaginable names, nor is it illegal to thank a World War II veteran for his sacrifice by spitting in his face. But you don't see people doing this, right? Well, why not? After all, it's not illegal, is it?

    I like Linux. I use it all the time. I want to continue to use it all the time. And I have to be honest here: things like this do not help us. When we essentially take a crap on somebody who's trying to do us a favor by giving us a neat gadget for free, this gives the Bill Gates of the world some ammunition. It lets them point at us and call us names like "juvenile, snotty, and subversive." Some of you may revel in being referred to in these terms, but I can assure you I do not.
  • by Anonymous Coward
    I can't find any news about this anywhere. Can you please provide a link? Thanks!
  • by Anonymous Coward
    By reading this post (the "Post"), you agree to be bound by the conditions (the "Terms of Service") stated as follows:

    You agree to mirror the Post indefinitely, spamming it to popular news sites, USENET groups, IRC servers and so on.

    You agree to pay the author ("Me") lots and lots of cash.

    You agree not to moderate the Post down, for it is not Offtopic.

    You agree to moderate the Post up, as it is Informative and Witty.

    You agree to get naked and smear yourself in strawberry jam, then break into the Grizzly cage at your nearby Zoo.

    Have I made my point yet? These licenses are bogus. Even if you make the argument that since it is their service, they can dictate how you use it.. My post is a service. It conveys information, conveys an idea. Their service conveys informations; it conveys links to other sites.

    But hey, maybe this will all change when a group of overpriced lawyers argue until a Judge makes an unfair ruling, making crap TOS'es and Licenses legal. Oh wait, UCITA. Doh.
  • Personally I don't care if Campbell's Soup is being sued or has lousy profits, I just want to eat my can of soup and go on with life.

    That's the problem with most of the public nowadays. They are consumers rather than citizens. They don't care whether their gizmos/food come from, they just want to enjoy it, without regards to their social/health/ecological impacts, at home or abroad.


  • send it to me, I'll use it...

    ...for evil!

  • He said the value of "Cues" which are the little magic barcodes that DC sells to the advertisers, not the CueCats which they gave to consumers.
  • Or you can go to [] for a book database if you don't want to write any code yourself.
  • My sig is a quote from lobster magnet [].
  • Seriously, why do this?

    Because it's funny as hell, and it makes a effective political statement.

    The Digital Convergence people were nice enough to give away a pretty cool little toy for free, and then what do people do?

    To butcher a common aphorism, the CueCat is only free if your privacy has no value. Don't you find a product whose sole purpose is to provide marketers info about which products you own just a little bit underhanded?

    It's not illegal to call your mother unimaginable names, [...] But you don't see people doing this, right? Well, why not? After all, it's not illegal, is it?

    You don't, and the reason is that your mother doesn't try treat you like a gullible consumer, waiting to be exploited. The whole CueCat scheme is right up there with 'MAKE $$$ FAST' in terms of the way it views its marks... er, users.

    When we essentially take a crap on somebody who's trying to do us a favor by giving us a neat gadget for free, this gives the Bill Gates of the world some ammunition.

    Give us? Who is 'us'? Did Digital Convergence come out with a Linux version of there software while I wasn't looking? And even if they have, does the fact that they are trying to exploit Linux users with their Trojan Cat mean that we owe them any favors?

    It lets them point at us and call us names like "juvenile, snotty, and subversive."

    BFD. I'd rather be thought of a juvenile, snotty, and subversive, than as a corporate sheep who does whatever his television tells him to.

  • (warning, off topic)

    Left claw North! RIGHTCLAWSOUTH!!

    I've seen your sig, and I really must know ... what on Earth is RIGHTCLAWSOUTH?


  • And here we see the point: most people don't understand what the hell they are talking about. Federal tax brackets are designed to tax portions of your income at vaious levels. So, some of your income is not taxed, some is taxed at 15%, etc. As an example, I am in the top tax bracket, but only paid 22% of my income in federal taxes. Also, that sales tax is on goods purchased. As you make more money, sales tax represents a smaller percentage of your overall tax burden.

    Thus the hack: it is an attempt to give people the opprotunity to learn more about the world around them and how various corporations operate.


  • Who in their right mind would actually use it? We recieved one for free and I won't let it touch my computer. ... ugg

    Would you like a Python based alternative to PHP/ASP/JSP?
  • The logo on this page looks remarkably similar to the original. I wonder if CRQ has a case against them?
  • Of course, look what they did to pSOS..
    It's about buying your competitors and then deepsixing them. That's the Wind River bizplan.
  • Personally I don't care if Campbell's Soup is being sued or has lousy profits, I just want to eat my can of soup and go on with life.

    Some people are more careful about what they eat. []

    < tofuhead >

  • we the sheeple.
  • by Juln ( 41313 )
    excfept that even with drivers that are just fine, getting them to work with Mr. easy-123 -don't tell you anything about what the fuck-is really-going-on with -your-computer operating system doesn't always work, and without any other little check boxes to click you are just fucked.

    Also, i have never written my own device driver, but have used linux for years! Woah!!!

    Soon or later, you will stop trolling.
  • by Juln ( 41313 )
    Well, lets see... this could challenge your assumptions to be exposed to the reality of people removed from your narrow viewpoints, but here we go: I am 1> not broke 2> have a TNT2, not super old but plenty fine for 1600x1200 2d display (also well supported by Nvidia themselves) 3> I do not have windows installed 4> i don't have time to play games 5> My hardware is three years old, but since the most demanding program I use is the gimp or maybe gcc, that is okay with me... Good day Mr. AC
  • by dhuff ( 42785 )
    You can go to your bios and tell it "NO" for plug and play OS, and "NO" for ACPI support, and win2k will go into legacy mode and let you set irq's yourself.

    Ahhh...but then you have to reinstall Win2K as it installs a different Hardware Abstraction Layer (hal.dll) depending upon whether ACPI support in your BIOS is on or off. All this fsck-ing effort, just because Win2K won't leave my IRQs alone and let me tell it what they are :-P If I didn't want to play the occasional game, I'd wipe my Winblows partition and just boot Debian all the time.

  • ... find the barcode for slashdot moderators?

    (Mod me as Ironic!)
  • Yesterday, I received an unsolicited email from "" informing me about some supposed "phone in sick" day where people should call in sick to go to some protest about some stupid cause of theirs. Something about people catapulting themselves over the canadian border for money. I'm not kidding.

    (Incidentally, the "phone in sick" day is on 4/20, so I know what a lot of people might be doing instead of going to work :) )

    Their spam says, helpfully, "This message is not commercial. Get off our list by writing". Uh, thanks anyways, but what makes you think that I want to receive your damn email in the first place? My response: "This message is not commercial. Fuck Off!"

    I know that communism ("May Day" features prominently in the message which I won't write about to avoid doing their work for them) is a tough sell around the world, along with pr0n, x10, and other annoying things, so I can understand why they feel that they have to go to any length to impose themselves on others, but come on. GO AWAY.

    The only thing worse than capitalist spam is communist spam. It's like a fucking religion.

  • ...are belong to us []
  • There's a bunch of stuff at foocat/

    - - - - -
  • I ran strings on the .exe, and it appears to be written in perl.

    - - - - -
  • yeah..i miss typed it..give me a break

    i finished the script anyways
  • by pirodude ( 54707 ) on Tuesday April 17, 2001 @08:47AM (#285799)
    This [] by far is the best hack. It removes all encryption and allows you to scan in items and it shows their REAL barcode's.

    I'm trying to take this, query and dump the info back into a database to catalog my 3k cd collection. I need help on parsing a url like: earch.d2w/Details?mediaType=Music&searchType=ISBNU PC&code=601215309928 into id, performer, title, style, track_name, type, publisher, date, producer, engineer, guest, cost using perl. Some of them wont be there for every record so that needs to be taken into account. There will be 1 record like that for every track, so if a cd has 12 tracks there will be 12 entries with only the track_names changing. Cost will be divided by the # of tracks so when added back together it equals the original cost (i wanna know how much this is worth :).

    If you can help great, I know most of you need something better to do with your time :)
  • citizenc/ []

    The site has been slashdotted up the ass -- the original archive is mirrored above.

  • My point is that other websites that have used Google to do fun or interesting things have been asked to stop.

    This isn't a question of using Goggle, but a question of google asking them to stop. That was my point. I'm sorry if this wasn't more clear.

    K5 is one example. Unfortunatly, I don't remember what it was they did (some sort of search engine battle or some such?)
  • Doh! that's what I get for browsing at +1

    And not having enough coffee. :)
  • by cetan ( 61150 ) on Tuesday April 17, 2001 @08:46AM (#285803) Journal
    This is from the CueHack webpage:

    Then it does a Google web search for somecompany and a randomly chosen topic of potential interest

    But [] shows:

    The Google Search Services are made available for your personal, non-commercial use only. You may not use the Google Search Services to sell a product or service, or to increase traffic to your Web site for commercial reasons, such as advertising sales. You may not take the results from a Google search and reformat and display them, or mirror the Google home page or results pages on your Web site, or send automated queries to Google's system without express permission from Google. If you want to make commercial use of the Google Search Services you must enter into an agreement with Google to do so. Please contact for more information.

    Unfortunatly (?) I don't have a "Clue"Cat so I'm not sure of the output from CueHack. Can anyone comment on this?

    The only reason I bring it up is that I've seen other sites shut down because of fun uses of Google search results due to the TOS.

  • Except for:

    ...or send automated queries to Google's system...
  • What's really bad is that it has become such a cliche with Hemos. _Every single @#$$@ article_ that refers to windows software comes with this holier-than-though editorial addition. Even if he /doesn't/ have any Windows boxen it's just self righteousness at this point--and I that's something that we have quite enough of already.
  • This is almost completely unrelated, but it reminds me of a technology I thought was really cool as a kid. There was a barcode reader that was designed to work with special storybooks. As you were reading the story you could scan the barcodes in the book and hear the characters say certain things. Now that would have been a toy to hack. "Mommy, why is the fuzzy bunny moaning?"
  • Finally I have a reason to go get one of these purely for the entertainment value.
  • How long before CueCat comes down on this one as improper use?
  • (scans Ricky Martin CD)

    How do you feel about Livin' La Vida Loca?

  • It's a Windows app, so I'm not able to run it.
    I don't believe for one fucking second that you haven't a Windows box somewhere, Jeff. And even if you didn't, Taco does, unless Loki has ported Diablo II and The Sims to GNU/Linux when I wasn't looking.

    The only thing worse than a GNU/Linux weenie is a GNU/Linux weenie who pretends that he doesn't use the good ole' Win32 every so often. Taco does this all the time, making the type of comments in one article that you just made ("too bad I can't run this app because I'm a l337 lun1x lu53r! h4w h4w, w1nd0ze 5uck5.") and then talking about how he participates in Windows/Mac activities next ("I just love watching crappy anime DVDs and playing the hottest new games on my PC!"). LOL...

    This site would be so much better if you would drop the fassad, drop the Gates/Borg icon, and drop the anti-Microsoft bullshit. Slashdot has never had a very pro-Microsoft attitude, but in the past year it's just become a place to flame Microsoft and four-letter gov't media organizations.

    Remember, kids, Windows: 17 0wn5 j00!


  • In order for the software to work, you have to have a pristine cuecat. If you've hacked your cuecat to get around the encryption, so that it works as a generic barcode scanner, CueHack won't work.
  • by (void*) ( 113680 ) on Tuesday April 17, 2001 @10:11AM (#285813)
    Digital Convergence happens to be the one who gave away, unsolicited, the CueCats. Seeing that people are not using it as intended, they proceeded to claim copyright and IP ownership of the CurCat, when there was actually very little that is new in their BarCode scanner. Their trivial encoded was called "encryption" and they threatened people posting code to decode it with legal action.

    For these reasons, I think they are actually asking for punishment. If they did none of these, I would agree with you. But they did, so I don't.

  • I actually went and hooked up the cue cat that I've had for months and tried this. I was a bit dissapointed. For the few companies that I acutally managed to find cuecat ready ads for, the program didn't open any interesting pages (I even got a page in french when I scanned an ad for columbia/tristar home videos). Now I didn't check the pages that it didn't open for me, so maybe I missed something. The program's an interesting idea, but maybe there's a better way to search for more interesting pages. For example, if I scan a barcode that would normally bring me to, maybe it could do some sort of search for pages like or, etc... this might yeild more interesting results.
  • The original vision for Alexa [] was like this. The idea was that you installed the Alexa browser plug-in, and when you looked at a site, Alexa brought up background info, like consumer comments or corporate information.

    Now, it's basically a gimmick to divert you to merchants who pay Alexa. Sad.

  • by mtDNA ( 123855 ) on Tuesday April 17, 2001 @08:35AM (#285816) Homepage

    There are some open source Java drivers for CueCat at: []

  • I can't think of a single reason not to create a 2 GB partition to Win32, just in case I need it. And people accuse others of being closed-minded. Huh.
    Any professional any any technical/scientific field, which should include computer science or comp engineering will tell you 'the right tool for the right job.'
  • "At some point the 'geeks' will realize that life holds better experiences"

    Hey, dont tease them with that `life` stuff! (Besides, some of them have tried it, and its just too damn icky!)
  • by stilwebm ( 129567 ) on Tuesday April 17, 2001 @08:35AM (#285819)
    I'm afraid to scan my food packaging's bar codes.
  • There is absolutely nothing wrong with a company trying to make a buck.

    On the other hand, a company that immorally claims rights that it does not legitimately have, that hires scumbags to send threatening letters to people who are acting within their legal rights, that gives away items and then claims to still own or control them. That company should be skinned, have its pelt nailed to the barn door as a warning to others, and have its :CueCat carcass thrown into the ditch for the dogs to eat.

    Next question?

  • Well, "culture jamming" would be the point, except that RTMark are such a bunch of self-righteous pricks that they're probably just in it to get their name on Slashdot. They have a history of supporting DoS attacks, and other unsavory fare.
  • mmmm....


  • **CueHack then informs me that someone in the white house has page viewed the site over 100 times**

    Yup - every time he looks in the mirror...
  • Heard of ACPI? It's been the standard for a while, and Win2k is the only OS that really supports it. If your hardware wont work sharing IRQ's, blame the hardware, not win2k.

    I'm running a gf2mx, sblive, nic all on irq 11 through acpi, no hitches.

    You can go to your bios and tell it "NO" for plug and play OS, and "NO" for ACPI support, and win2k will go into legacy mode and let you set irq's yourself.
  • Dilute the value? I sure hope to god you didn't pay for one.
  • windriver bought epilogue (the snmp company) and I've had some bad experiences with the code and tech support of windriver/epilogue.

    for folks that ask me which snmp agent to buy, I always say to AVOID windriver/epilogue. they clearly don't care about their snmp business anymore (I have firsthand battle stories to tell, but too long for this forum.)


  • No, that would have defeated part of their goal. Using the CueCat software you can scan a can of baked beans. The bar code is then transmitted to the CueCat mother ship, and the mother ship directs you to a the home page of the company that makes baked beans. CueCat collects information about what you're eating (or reading, or whatever) and uses it for marketing and sales. Your scheme would defeat this goal.
  • by e_lehman ( 143896 ) on Tuesday April 17, 2001 @01:26PM (#285828)

    Every now and then I like to get the latest news [] about how CueCat is taking over the world. For example, recent Digital Convergence press releases reveal the following juicy tidbits:

    • Adoption of CueCat technology in the catalog for ClassOne Orthodontics of Lubbock, Texas, maker of the world's widest range of ceramic dental brackets.
    • "New Jersey Bride will be the first bridal publication to include :CRQ print-to-Web technology" That's what I call a major business coup right there.
    • "With its January/February edition, Connecticut Traveler magazine became the first consumer travel magazine to include :CRQ print-to-Web technology" I'm sure we'll all be anxiously checking our mailboxes for the next issue of Connecticut Traveler!

    (Follow the link above if you think I made these up.)

    Good to see that $100 million [] in startup funding for Digital Convergence is paying off in spades!

  • I don't know, what is a bananagram? Is it like a cramagram?
  • by startled ( 144833 ) on Tuesday April 17, 2001 @09:55AM (#285830)
    There is a point to all of this. The "culture jamming" movement is about getting the other side of the story to people. That is, rather than a person ("consumer") just getting the "Campbell's soup is good for you, American, homemade, grandma" message, you also get the "Campbell's beats monkeys to force them to craft Rat Organ Soup", or somesuch.

    Yes, you can get a lot of this information other places, like searching the net, or hitting Consumer Reports. Some of it's actually fairly difficult to get (and this CueHack won't get it). The idea is most people only see the big billboards and TV ads, because that's what corporations pay for (of course). We, as non-corporations, don't have multimillion dollar marketing budgets-- how do we make our voices heard? This is one more creative way of getting the other side of the story heard.

    Does it work? Sometimes. You're reading this, anyway. Maybe a few people will see the article on /., run the program, and find out a few new things about the products they own. Maybe a few people will go check out Consumer Reports. Is it as effective as $50million? Unfortunately not.
  • **Reading Wired**

    **notices a really stupid ad made by the White House**

    **Takes the CueHack and scans the provided bar code**

    **CueHack then informs me that someone in the white house has page viewed the site over 100 times**

    **Vomits in disgust**

  • you can use Google without ever agreeing to (or even reading) those terms

    That is, if you ignore the very first sentence in the TOS:

    Welcome! By using Google's search engine services, ("Google Search Services") you agree to be bound by the following terms and conditions (the "Terms of Service").

    Yes, even companies besides Microsoft have TOS agreements.

  • Your point was good, and I understood it fine. I was correcting the jackass who replied to your post, saying that you don't have to agree to google's TOS to use their service. You agree to it by using the service at all.
  • by edp ( 171151 ) on Tuesday April 17, 2001 @10:31AM (#285834) Homepage

    "That is, if you ignore the very first sentence in the TOS:"

    A person who does not agree to the terms of service is perfectly free to ignore the first sentence of the terms of service, since no sentence in the terms of service is binding on a person who does not agree to the terms of service.

    Furthermore, Google does not even ask you to agree to the terms of service as a condition of using their service. I just visited and did a search and did not see anything asking me to agree to anything or even a link to their terms of service or other legal information.

    So why would you think that a sentence written somewhere is binding upon somebody who perhaps never saw it, never agreed to it, and was never asked to agree to it? What is the rule you are using -- 'Anything a big company writes is law'?

  • perhaps you could try using the app in wine. but most of slashdot's readers run windows anyway
  • ...instead of having the device spit out "encrypted" (actually, encoded) content, they should have desined their firmware to only scan a barcode that begins with a particular sequence, then require that anyone (such as Radio Shack catalogs) print their bar codes beginning with that sequence. This would guarantee that no one would use the cuecat as a free generic bar-code scanner
  • Well, it's the software that's nasty.. don't install it. You can't complain about a free barcode reader, though. Use it to scan your (CDs, Movies, Books) into a database on your computer, make shopping lists, or any other number of things. You'll have to get out that text editor and write some code, though. Fortunately, most of the drivers for the device have already been hacked.. You just need to write some apps.
  • If you haven't mentioned, we would not even remember such a thing still exists! Here we go again...
  • by Alien54 ( 180860 ) on Tuesday April 17, 2001 @08:56AM (#285839) Journal
    Consumers are expected to happily scan products, ads, etc. - thus reinforcing purchasing behavior. When they do, they will be shown only the carefully-packaged image the company wants them to see. The dangers of choice that interactivity brings have been closed off, and though consumers feel like they are doing something (scanning is fun!) they are in fact as much passive viewers as if they were watching television commercials - it's a one-way, closed system.

    Why does this sound like rat in the maze sort of psychiatric mind control thought experiment? As a business plan for the marketing types?

    CueHack "hacks" (opens up) this closed system by using it another way. It allows you, the consumer, to experience the same wholesome scanning pleasure as you do with the normal CueCat software, but displays other kinds of information about the companies - information that you would likely have run across if you had done a web search about the company, but that the company might prefer that you, the consumer, not see. This could be information about corporate abuse, boycotts against the company., even how much money the company is making, their corporate image as presented to shareholders, etc.

    Freedom, now that is a dangerous option for the consumer. Looks like marketing is trying harder and harder to take it away from the rats in the cage.

    Heck we even have folks promoting the model of life as "We are Mice in a Maze" (not the real title, but the book referanced is reviewed here [], webpage here [], parodied here [].)

    That's a nice little mouse. Enjoy your life in the maze. Nothing outside the maze is important. Learn to love the maze. The maze is your friend. Here, have some cheese.

    Check out the Vinny the Vampire [] comic strip

  • (I am not a lawyer)

    I like this one. Rather than go one-on-one with the DC people with regards to the patents, it does an end-run by expanding the scope of the information returned. In my reading of the various patents, this goes beyond the four corners of the claims by looking up "dirt" as well as serving up the direct link.

    Will K&K go after these people? I suspect so. The idea of doing a search on the domain name coupled with derogatory terms isn't covered by the claims of the DC patents, but it would serve to dilute the value of Cues, and so DC may launch a pre-emptive strike.

    Now, these people would be well served to file a patent on the idea, to protect them from claims of infringement...

  • A friend sent me an E-mail on exatly that not to long ago. Unfortunatly, I've already deleted it. I did, however, save this link:;sid=2001/ 1/31/18749/1930

    Hopefully this is something similar to what you are looking for.

  • I agree with some of the sentiment expressed here.

    You have to understand, that this is a pro-linux site. I have been a visitor for about two years now, and it's all taken in good fun. Most of the time Microsoft deserves what they get.

    But windows IS a valid operating system, despite wht anyone says. You can mod me down to -400, if you really want to, but it won't change a thing.

    I love linux. It is rivalling windows now, and will become a leading consumer operating system. But hating windows just because it's windows isn't right.

    The "I deleted my windows partition, only use Linux, woe is me I can't play Diablo II/ The Sims / CueHack" interjection is rediculous. I can't think of a single reason not to create a 2 GB partition to Win32, just in case I need it. And people accuse others of being closed-minded. Huh.

    But don't go soft on me either. I want you to kick Microsoft in the pants when they find a security hole in IE and Outlook. And to further dilute my point, the Bill Gates/Borg icon is cool. Nothing against it.

    - Ando
  • This is really funny. It's too bad most of the the people who would actually care to see the "alternative" information wouldn't be caught dead using a ::Cue:::Cat:: to begin with, but it's a nice sentiment.
  • Come on Hemos, you don't have a single extra machine lying around that could even be a dual boot linux / windows? It's a shame to miss out on cool apps like this one because you never venture from your favorite os.

    God knows theres enough apps for linux to last a lifetime, but to ignore all else seems silly.
  • >>Personally I don't care if Campbell's Soup is being sued or has lousy profits,

    >That's the problem with most of the public nowadays

    Why? 99% of the boycotts/lawsuits/labor disputs/etc I think are horsecrap. It's getting to the point where I'll search out companies with the cajones to stand up to the professional whiners so I can give them my business.

    The real problem are the idiots out there who hear there is a boycott of Fred's Frankfurters and avoid the company. Never mind it's PETA doing the boycotting...

    All your boogers are belong to us

  • "You cracked the bar code?" - Third Rock
  • Ever heard of regular expressions?
  • by ackthpt ( 218170 ) on Tuesday April 17, 2001 @09:03AM (#285848) Homepage Journal

    Microsoft Corporation, Redmond, WA, USA, Earth, Sol System - All your space are belong to us


  • You scan a product with :CueCat. CueHack reads your scan, and checks Digital Convergence's database to see what URL you would have been sent to had you been using the normal :CueCat software. From this URL, it determines the domain name, usually Then it does a Google web search for somecompany and a randomly chosen topic of potential interest - currently terms like "boycott," "corporate abuse," "profits," etc.

    What's so impressive about this? It's far too random and anyone can just skip to the chase by going to and doing a "boycott, etc." search without the bother of a cue-cat & this Win program.

  • that's what Stef [] was doing.


  • If you want evil, you don't even need a Cuecat. Just write a program to simulate one, and send bogus scans to DC. If enough people did that, their db would be useless.

    This, of course, would probably be illegal, so don't try this at home kids.

    Do munitions have UPC barcodes? :^)
  • That sounds like fun! We could catapult them back over the U.S. border -- add some rules for scoring, get a league together, and there might be big TV bucks available.

    It would certainly beat those pansy "reality" shows.

    And we could brand the "ball" with a UPC code, and scan him with a Cuecat to keep it on topic. :^)
  • Piffle! Proving prior art would be easy enough. If anyone wants to patent/copyright my DNA, they'll have to deal with me mom and dad!
  • Ahhh...but then you have to reinstall Win2K as it installs a different Hardware Abstraction Layer (hal.dll) depending upon whether ACPI support in your BIOS is on or off. All this fsck-ing effort, just because Win2K won't leave my IRQs alone and let me tell it what they are :-P If I didn't want to play the occasional game, I'd wipe my Winblows partition and just boot Debian all the time.

    Just change the driver for the HAL via Device Mgr. If that doesn't work, run SysPrep to remove settings and then change your BIOS--it'll rerun PnP setup. BTW, though, ACPI is a much better solution than those damn IRQs anyway.

  • [] [] [] *mirror*
    I used that name about a year ago. I think the author of this application needs to learn to check to see if a name is in use before he goes and tries to take it. Anyone have any suggestions? Maybe it should be called YAC yet another cuehack.
    Dan V.

  • Mister Black, you are wrong for resisting the tempation.

    If you have the time and ability to play counter-strike all day then by all meanse you should be polaying counter-strike ALL DAY.

    I only wish I had your luxury. Counter-strike is the greates game ever made.

  • While this is more novelty than anything else, I think it underlines the main point that people have been repeating about open-sourcing the CueCat system.

    Open platforms allow creativity to flourish

    It is very much the right of DC to demand that their CueCat be based on a closed proprietary platform. However, it is the duty of people with different uses for it to show the true extent for which the device can be used.

  • made available for your personal, non-commercial use only

    The CueHack doesn't appear to be selling anything or making money off users so it could hardly be considered commercial. If CueHack is non-commmercial then Google's service is available for their use.
  • Freedom, now that is a dangerous option for the consumer. Looks like marketing is trying harder and harder to take it away from the rats in the cage.

    Or... you could not use it. I don't tend to read magazines next to my computer and I have a CueCat still in the package that I got from Slickdeals []. As for marketing in general, you could do what most people do... flip past the ads in magazines, take a piss during the commercials, and change the station on the radio.

    Marketing people aren't my favorite people, especially in my company, but they aren't evil. They're people who are trying to drum up business with a hook. In short, if you feel like a mouse in a maze, don't go after the cheese. They'll build the next maze around a different mouse.

  • (off-topic) hahaha! I remember that! Some creepy lady was checking it out at Circuit City or wherever, and I heard the book talking and thought, "neat!" Unfortunately, I was like 8 or something, and it passed into faded memory. Nice to have a childhood flash of memory validated! :)
  • ...for being off-topic, but I have a question for /. readers.

    I want to build my own TiVO like system which can record and playback TV (I don't care about favorites or whatever, I just want it to record and playback TV -later I'll add DVD playback and mp3 player functions too). Can anyone point me to websites of people doing a project like this? Please help, I need something to do to keep me off the streets and from playing counter-strike all day long.

    Mister Black
    I am become death, the destroyer of worlds
  • Regardless of the relative merits (or lack thereof) of this particular app-

    It is very disheartening to see how many people say they do NOT care about company xyz's behavior.

    This is exactly how corporations with an agenda get away with all they get away with. What a waste of skin...

  • Might not be illegal...if the server is publicly accessible and you aren't sending enough data to crash it or otherwise interrupt the service, I don't know if there is any law that prevents you from sending fake info. After all, if you don't own a CueCat, you didn't accept any agreements *not* to send false info to their servers... ;)

  • IMHO, this is a dangerous technical precedent to set. With the rapid increase and proliferation of DNA technology (ever since James Watson and Francis Crick stole the idea of its helix structure from Rosalind Franklin), how long will it be until devices like this modified cuecat are used in conjunction with vast, government-operated databases purchased from corporations to allow anyone to 'dig up dirt' on anyone else just by scanning a strand of their hair, or fingernail clipping?

    Portions of our genome are already being patented and copyrighted. That's a start. We need a large corporation to underwrite the copyrighting of the entire genome, so that it can be declared intellectual property and be safe from these kinds of intrusions. It might even be a good idea to encrypt the genome so it can't be stolen (since modern encryption technologies like SDMI have proven to be unbreakable), and so that no one can identify us from our cells without our private key.

  • I don't have one of those dildo-shaped devices either! Oh no, whatever shall I do! I guess I'll have to find the dirt out on my favorite companies my usual way: While wearing my Nikes, getting into my GM car, driving to Wal-Mart, to pick up a Big Mac and Windows ME.
  • Actually, I have thought of such a concept myself, but of course this guy is to lazy to actually go and implement it...

    Oh yeah, thanks goes to those precious CueCat makers. They really didn't know the service they did to mankind when they made that little toy.

  • by EvilStein ( 414640 ) <spam&pbp,net> on Tuesday April 17, 2001 @08:35AM (#285867)
    This is the same kind of stuff that we could just punch into Google if we really wanted.

    Personally I don't care if Campbell's Soup is being sued or has lousy profits, I just want to eat my can of soup and go on with life.

    It's kind of interesting how they mention the debocle with Digital Convergence threatening people that wrote Linux drivers for the Cat, and then only have a Windows version of the software. With no source available. Jumping on the ol' "let's make money with this Linux thing" bandwagon? If the Linux version was so easy, why didn't they make one... and where's the source?
  • And this is, exactly, from reading the company named printed in big, colorful letters on the package above the barcode and looking up the dirt based on that?

    Oh, I know, I know...but it brings to mind oohing and aaahing at a jerky, crunchy one inch window of oinline streaming video while sitting next to a wide-screened television hooked up to a kzillion-channel satellite.

  • try parsing the stuff inside the 'Contributor Table' plus the tracklist immediately following it.

"My sense of purpose is gone! I have no idea who I AM!" "Oh, my God... You've.. You've turned him into a DEMOCRAT!" -- Doonesbury