EULAlyzer

EULAnalyzer 2007-06-12_123038 Version tested : 1.2

Website : www.javacoolsoftware.com
Download : Page

Description : Analyse any EULA (End User Licence Agreement) from any installation before you sign up to something you weren’t aware of. Scans for specific words and then displays results with grouping and ratings.

Lets face it, no one ever reads the EULA (End User Licence Agreement : jargon about what you agree to when installing anything) unless it’s 3 or less lines long. Well now you don’t have to.

EULAnalyzer reads the EULA for you, searching for key terms and words, and then presenting them to you in categories, giving each phrase and its surrounding words a risk rating. It’s so easy to use, but a little difficult for anyone without jargon knowledge to understand.

After using this app for a weeks worth of installations, I believe that actually, to a non competent user, it could do more harm than good. I’ll use an example. I went to download.com to find a random new app to put EULAlyzer to the test.

EULAnalyzer2 2007-06-12_124829 Download Accelerator Plus seemed like a good test subject. Popular, fairly new, and bound to have a huge EULA. Sure enough, it was massive, as you can see from the scroll bar from the first image.

It was rather simple to use. All I had to do was go to install the app, and when the EULA comes up, just drag a little cross from the analyser, which would copy the text and then give you a grouped report. In the first image, we can see the groups. In the image to your right now, you can see the full extent of each section it picked up key words for.

The list seems a bit extensive. You can click on a green arrow next to each picked up phrase to show it in context. After looking through all of them for this app, it’s clear that there is nothing untoward happening.

So why does it pick up so many phrases? Well in a nutshell, it uses keywords. It doesn’t look like they have worked on looking at the context in the app, so it obviously leaves something to be desired.

Conclusion : For the average user, it WILL be more hassle than it’s worth. However, for the AppAholic who is installing something that looks slightly dodgy or has a bad reputation, it’s a rather handy tool. Less giving you advice, and more pointing you to the areas of interest. For anyone who is installing anything with a stupidly big EULA, and you really have to look through it, then this is your Christmas come early.
Personally I believe this app is still in its early stages, but well worth a check. Hold onto it, it might just come in rather handy when installing the next big peer2peer app.

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~ by relequestual on 22 June, 2007.

 
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