I am presently reading Steve Wozniak’s autobiography. A few moths ago, read Steve Jobs’ biography.
Both mention the blue box for telephone phreaking. In those days, both considered it to be a prank. While these activities were illegal even in those days, most people will after reading these pardon both because these guys went on to do great things in computing. They also had the idea of commercializing the idea and sold a few boxes till they go into a mix-up with some thugs.
Compare this with today’s scenario. While both had fun tinkering with other people’s stuff and even selling gadgets that would help other people take advantage of the companies, then their own stuff was released, Steve Jobs in particular seems to have been against allowing people to tinker with their products. How is that for an irony? When you are the small guy, tinkering is fun, but when you are the big guy, tinkering is not allowed?