2002 December 16

(entry last updated: 2002-12-16 17:17:14)

Who can figure out what Philips is up to with this product? Since they seem to have caved on the CD protection activity, is this software a way around, or a way to maintain, control?

CNet reports the close of the Jon Johnasen (of DeCSS) trial. (The ZDNet version has Talkbacks from the readers.) Slashdot had a report on Saturday with some information.

Lik Sang is back in the games (but not mod-chip) business in time for Christmas.

In case you were wondering about the director of Total Information Awareness, Wired tells you how to find out all you might want to start with.

Although the Australian libel ruling has gotten a lot of feathers ruffled, there are some contrary views.

Wired covers the pending release of some carefully crafted licenses from Creative Commons.

ZDNet has assembled all their ElcomSoft/Sklyarov articles into one place.

Last year the NYTimes Magazine gave a list of current ideas; this year’s list has a couple of notable memes from the past year:

The Times also profiles the record industry and its efforts to adapt to a changing environment. Of course, tha article also points out “But if record executives are singing a kinder, gentler tune, it is because, in effect, they have no choice.

Slashdot discusses Bandlink, a technology that purports to allow your computer to report on your CD playing if you listen using a machine on the network.

Robert X. Cringeley gives his thoughts about how the record industry ought to change, and why. He makes a good point that is frequently missed when talking about this (although see David Bowie’s piece):

So digital technology may ultimately mean bands have to make their money the old-fashioned way — by touring, selling out concerts, constantly writing new music, and ignoring the undercurrent of their older music being free. To those readers who decried my emphasis on rock music examples over classical or jazz, those two genres are already living in the future where musicians survive by performance rather than because they have a recording contract. If they had to rely solely on record sales, Branford Marsalis and Yo-Yo Ma would starve.

EETimes reports that SmartCards seem to be the current consensus platform to “solve” the potential digital piracy problem for digital television. Slashdot discussses, including this link to an article from July and the resulting Slashdot discussion then

2002 December 15

(entry last updated: 2002-12-15 15:26:31)

Now that I’ve had some time to read it, Tim O’Reilly’s latest on "piracy" raises some excellent issues.

(The hazards of falling behind…..)

The NYTimes Magazine makes a small contribution to cultural consciousness – song spoofing on P2P nets is cited and Overpeer is fingered as the lead – in the face of their uninformative WWW site, a little blog-based investigation fills in a few puzzle pieces. Check here for a few faces, or a Slashdot discussion

2002 December 13

(entry last updated: 2002-12-13 07:22:21)

My wedding anniversary – and one of the "real" ones, in that it really also falls on a Friday this year!

End of term crunch, combined with other deadlines, has made this a busy week for me, with less than adequate time to keep up with goings-on in this area. (Interesting to note that, in spite of having left my formal student status behind almost 2 decades ago, my crunch-time calendar still matches that of the academic cycle).

Anyway, one of my recent delights was grading (*finally*) the short papers I assigned to ESD.10 on the block I taught this year on copyright and the impacts of P2P upon the policy issues arising from its development. The paper asked the students to cite examples of "architecture" (a la Lessig’s Code) and, as is so often the case with TPP students, I got to learn some new things – my favorite was a description of the fact that many public rest rooms in Europe have special lighting installed whose color is shifted toward the blue end of the spectrum. Why? Because it’s hard to see your veins, thus making it hard to inject drugs.

Sad to see the continuing decline of OS/2, in spite of IBM’s protestations that it will always be available.

Larry’s taking his e-Book discussion on the road – written up in CIO Magazine and commented upon on Slashdot – an Eldred recap, with a strong overtone of the implicit risks of marrying copyright to technological alienation.

2002 December 11

(entry last updated: 2002-12-11 17:45:32)

Whew! Made my deadline, so I can get back to catching up!.

Of course, the Elcomsoft case is underway; and I missed a NYTimes article on Ed Felten’s Fritz list. And it seems to be a big day in DVD piracy discussions – plus, Wired covers a Danish comany with some serious brass!

(6 items listed below)

2002 December 9

(entry last updated: 2002-12-09 18:51:28)

Well, I’m back now (for a couple of weeks, anyway). Lots of catching up to do.

(3 items listed below)

2002 December 3

(entry last updated: 2002-12-03 19:48:24)

Ugh! I’m never taking that evening flight from Heathrow again – at least, not if I expect to be functional the next morning!

Digging out is not going to get completed before I leave town again tomorrow, so here are just a few items to ponder:

  • Infoworld summarizes the state of play in the current Shrman Networks copyright liability trial – do Morpheus, KaZaA etc. have “substantial noninfringing uses?” Here’s the News.com piece by John Borland. And CopyFight offers up some “live” coverage.

  • In fact, Donna’s doing a whole lot better keeping up with things after Thanksgiving than I am.

  • Meanwhile, Lisa Bowman describes day one of the ElcomSoft trial. Slashdot had a story yesterday.

  • Declan McCullagh describes the rising fortunes for the broadcast flag, with potential FCC approval of its inclusion in digital TV transmissions. The ZDNet version includes some comments from readers.

  • ZDNet UK is reporting that a Microsoft representative has stted that Palladium is going to be Microsoft’s proposed infrastructure for the next TCPA – v1.2. Up until now, it was assumed that Palladium was just a software infrastructure that would make use of TCPA hardware – if true, this changes the complexion of the Palladium debate completely. I would like to think the idea of a closed hardware architecture would be rejected by the same people who eschew Apples in spite of their acknowledged advantages in other respects, but it’s dangerous to predict mob behavior.

  • The author of a GrepLaw piece on lagom copyright got his story accepted on Slashdot. Although it is accompanied by the usual troll vitriol, there are some worthwhile comments there – a little more traffic there than GrepLaw.

  • Salon adds to our consideration of the costs of distribution in the non-digital work with this article on the costs of books, to go along with considerations of the costs of CDs.

  • My brother points out that, even though I mentioned this article in my November 29 entry, I failed to note that Furdlog is also mentioned in it – the perils of trying to stay on top of things using a microweight VAIO without having my reading glasses with me!
  • Piracy of export controlled software on the rise – Ed Felten points out that, as hard as the article tries, it’s NOT an Internet problem.

  • Ed also likes this article from the Yale Law Review on copyright and the First Amendment.

  • Will hip-hop be the same with digital turntables? And what did it take to get this piece of hardware past the RIAA copyright cops?

  • And, what are the odds that they’ll take that technology on befofe they target some REAL pirates?

  • And, the issues of Internet access in libraries continue to trouble everyone.