crippleware

Slang Dictionary

crippleware

n.
1. [common] Software that has some important functionality deliberately removed, so as to entice potential users to pay for a working version.
2. [Cambridge] Variety of guiltware that exhorts you to donate to some charity (compare careware, nagware).
3. Hardware deliberately crippled, which can be upgraded to a more expensive model by a trivial change (e.g., cutting a jumper).

An excellent example of crippleware (sense 3) is Intel's 486SX chip, which is a standard 486DX chip with the co-processor dyked out (in some early versions it was present but disabled). To upgrade, you buy a complete 486DX chip with _working_ co-processor (its identity thinly veiled by a different pinout) and plug it into the board's expansion socket. It then disables the SX, which becomes a fancy power sink. Don't you love Intel?
FOLDOC
Computing Dictionary

crippleware definition


1. Software that has some important functionality deliberately removed, so as to entice potential users to pay for a working version.
2. (Cambridge) Guiltware that exhorts you to donate to some charity.
Compare careware, nagware.
3. Hardware deliberately crippled, which can be upgraded to a more expensive model by a trivial change (e.g. removing a jumper). A correspondant gave the following example:
In 1982-5, a friend had a Sharp scientific calculator which was on the list of those permitted in exams. No programmable calculators were allowed.
A very similar, more expensive, programmable model had two extra keys for programming where the cheaper version just had blank metal.
My friend took his calculator apart (as you would) and lo and behold, the rubber switches of the program keys were there on the circuit board. So all he had to do was cut a hole in the face. For exams he would pre-load the calculator with any useful routines, put a sticker with his name on it over the hole, and press the buttons through the sticker with a pen.
[Jargon File]
(2001-05-12)
The Free On-line Dictionary of Computing, © Denis Howe 2010 http://foldoc.org
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