A Ticking Time Bomb
Very odd things happen in the pro audio world. Particularly to those folks who develop software for this market. In an unrelenting quest to ensure that nobody steals software, legitimate users have to endure complicated challenge and response authorizations, hardware dongles, and hard disk serializations. Heaven help you if you need to upgrade your computer.
In what must be an ironic twist of fate, Digidesign issued a set of free audio plug-ins to their user base. Only one small problem. The plug-ins have a time bomb. Someone found out about the time bomb on July 7th due to a date error on their computer and posted this finding on the Digidesign User Conference. The actual time bomb was set for July 17th. Digidesign apparently had no advance knowledge of this other than the poster’s notice.
The brand name of the plug-ins: Bomb Factory.
Digidesign bought the plug-ins from Erik Gavriluk. There was a lot of speculation that Erik, the former owner of Bomb Factory, had deliberately time bombed the plug-ins to get back at Digidesign. Apparently Erik had a number of issues with the company.
Looking at Erik’s 12,500 square foot recording studio I would hazard to say that he did pretty well with the Bomb Factory plug-ins as well as the sale of said plug-ins to Digidesign. I doubt that he had anything to do with this time bomb at all.
As far as resolving the time bomb? Digidesign issued a patch for download. The expiration date of the software has now been removed.
Like many software companies, Digidesign puts an expiration date on their beta software releases. From time to time they accidentally release public versions with the beta expiration still enabled. That’s what happened here — basically a clerical error.
Digi took over the code in 2003 and I was not involved with this 2004 release.
One other clarification: Bomb Factory studios opened in 1997. The plug-ins were developed years later.