I can place "This software is licensed under the GPL" all over my software, but that does not mean that you are free to break into my servers and copy it.
You don't have to break into anyone's servers. Any project hosted on a free GitHub account is visible to the public.
No license is needed to buy the copy
Provided that the copy is already on U.S. soil. Or how am I misinterpreting 17 USC 602?
Provided that you have lawful access to a copy, you do not need a license [...] to watch an audiovisual work
I was under the impression that lawful possession of a copy that has been lawfully made and lawfully distributed to the public did not by itself constitute lawful access. For example, if something in a computer program's installer is encrypted, decrypting it without the copyright owner's permission would appear to constitute a violation of section 1201(a) and or 1201(b) based on how I read Universal v. Reimerdes.
if you own a copy, you do not need a license to run, backup, or make necessary modifications (for the purpose of running it) to software
It appears Nintendo would disagree with you with respect to its software distributed for its platforms. Consider the Retrode, a video game cartridge reader marketed specifically for use under the necessary modifications provision (117(a)(1)). I seem to remember a court holding that the backup provision (117(a)(2)) does not apply to ROM cartridges (Atari vs. JS&A), and I get the impression from various anti-piracy warnings published by Nintendo that Nintendo believes that the Retrode is illegal to possess because its non-infringing uses under 117(a)(1) are not substantial. Besides, section 117 appears not to apply to computer programs that form part of an audiovisual work such as a video game.
If you don't want to be bothered by licensing, dedicate your stuff to the public domain.
But even if you do that, you have no entitlement to a platform on which to run a computer program that you created. The license for the system libraries of the platform for which you develop a program dictates under which terms you may distribute a program. And increasingly, such as with game consoles and iOS, the licenses for the system libraries of platforms intended for home use have become incompatible with free software licensing.
So, when approaching a GPL author to make a deal, avoid projecting that attitude or they'll rightly invite you to fuck yourself.
In that case, what's the best way to phrase a request when trying to work around the fact that a critical mass of end users have chosen to adopt platforms with application distribution policies that are fundamentally incompatible with copyleft? The more prominent among these platforms are iOS and the major game consoles. See, for example, this story from four years ago.
Don't you get x86 builds enabled by default if you use a reasonably recent NDK version?
Even if you do, a lot of existing applications on the Store probably aren't built using bleeding-edge NDK, and some may have had x86 binaries stripped out to fit under Google's 50 MB limit for an APK.
Tablets are not PCs! They can't run x86 or x64 software!
Can a modern PC run software made for MS-DOS or Windows 3.1?
They're impossible to type on! They're not PCs!
All-in-one desktops have an external Bluetooth keyboard. Tablets have an external Bluetooth keyboard. The big difference is that tablets also have a multi-hour UPS.
If they're PCs then so is my phone and my PSP.
Your phone is a PC if it supports what Android calls "Unknown sources" or USB debugging. Your PSP is a PC if it has custom firmware.
Also why a tablet is not a PC is you still can't, for the most part, develop on it. While tablets like Surface Pro allow you to develop apps directly only it, tablets like the iPad are still woefully incapable
I have a cheapie $100 quad-core ARM tablet with Android. I can put Ubuntu on it
TheSkepticalOptimist was referring to the iPad, which Apple cryptographically locked down specifically to prevent what you went on to describe. Your Android tablet that you rooted and installed Ubuntu on is ultimately more like a Surface Pro than like an iPad.
You seem to be defining the category of hardware by the software running on it.
If a piece of hardware is cryptographically locked to run only one piece of software, then the hardware and software need to be considered together as a unit. For example, a Wii game console and a Macintosh computer with a G3 processor have the same CPU, both have an ATI GPU, and a Wii even looks like a Mac mini. The defining difference between a Wii and a G3 Mac is the software. The Mac ran Mac OS X and explicitly supported homemade applications. The Wii, on the other hand, verifies the digital signature of all applications against Nintendo's certificate and doesn't (officially) allow a retail console's owner to add an additional root of trust.
I only include machines with x86 derived CPUs, designed to run DOS/windows.
For those, I'd use the term "Lenovo compatible" personal computers (formerly "IBM compatible" until sometime in 2005). Macs have been personal computers since 1984; the product line became Lenovo compatible a little over two decades later once Apple switched to x86 CPUs and made Boot Camp available.
A tablet or a smartphone or even a pocket calculator are proper computers. They are all general purpose computers with a CPU, RAM and storage.
A tablet running Android or a smartphone running Android is general-purpose and is just as much a PC as anything running Windows 7, Windows 8, or Mac OS X. An iPad or iPhone is not because there exist purposes that Apple explicitly bans on these devices.
Laptops are cheap, portable
Not as portable as tablets, especially since ASUS stopped making 10" laptops at the end of last year. And you silently cut out "and an easy UI". See Teckla's comment.
lots of people are complaining about the new mac pro
I don't see why. It has six external PCI Express slots, each marked with a Thunderbolt logo.
If you need something small, just pick a small form factor. There are models at 13 or 11 inches
The problem is that they stopped making the 10 inch ones at the end of last year, and the larger bag needed to carry a 13" laptop tends to be a magnet for thieves.
What we anticipate seldom occurs; what we least expect generally happens. -- Bengamin Disraeli