NwAvGuy...Troll or Hero?
I can't believe it...NwAvGuy has come up yet again. In a recent post on the IEEE Spectrum site called "NwAvGuy: The Audio Genius Who Vanished", David Schneider provides a short summary of NwAvGuy's brief stint as an audio industry influencer, and informs us about problems with the manufacture of the O2 headphones amp due to it's Creative Commons CC BY-ND license which forbids derivative works. The power input connector specified in his amp is discontinued and the replacement part has pinouts that are too large for the holes on the circuit board. Unfortunately manufacturers of the O2 are forbidden by the license to change anything in the layout...even something as simple as the hole sizes, and to make matters worse, only NwAvGuy has the files needed for proper adjustments. Evidently JPS Labs has found a workaround and is modifying the boards because, as John Seaber sees it, "... (it's) okay in this case because it didn’t violate NwAvGuy’s fundamental intent." Personally, I'd agree with John in this case, but the ethical issues remain a bit uncomfortable none-the-less.
What I'm more interested in today is whether you feel NwAvGuys contributions to the dialog in the headphone enthusiast community were fruitful or not. I know he did a superb job of pissing numerous people off in on-line forums, and found himself banned from numerous sites. But he also did a great job of measuring gear, and providing quality technical information for hobbyists. Trolls come in two flavors: those the piss us off and are destructive, and trolls that piss us off but make us think leaving us the better for their annoyance. You can visit NwAvGuys now abandon website here.
Which one do you think NwAvGuy fits into best?