Jeff Duntemann's Contrapositive Diary Rotating Header Image

Odd Lots


  1. Erbo says:

    One of the links from the TechCrunch article is telling: Charles Stross pointed out the issue with publisher-demanded DRM enabling an Amazon monopsony nearly three years ago.

    And, of course, DRM doesn’t actually reduce piracy; Stross found all his E-books in DRM-cracked form on BitTorrent.

    Really, this is the same lesson the music industry learned when they insisted that iTunes incorporate DRM, and only later found out that Apple had them by the short hairs as a result.

    1. Hell, I found a perfect print-image PDF of my third edition on Usenet and several pirate sites six weeks after the book came out. I can’t imagine how that wasn’t an inside job. And as Bruce Schneier pointed out what may have been fifteen or more years ago, a DRM system only has to be cracked once.

  2. Jack Smith says:

    In the late 1920’s RCA’s patent monopoly was challenged by the Federal Trade Commission with the result that competitors could obtain licenses to use RCA’s patents on reasonable commercial terms.

  3. Lee Hart says:

    It’s sad to see how polarized the situation has become.

    On one side, there are customers who think everything should be “free”, and so will cheerfully download and copy every book, video, music and program they can get a hold of. They view the producers as rapacious robber barons that deserve to be cheated.

    On the other side, you have huge companies that view their own customers at best as sheep to be fleeced, and at worst as fools or pirates. There are extremists on both sides, unwilling to treat the other fairly.

    The patent and copyright situation is broken, and no one seems inclined to fix it.

    How can we get back to some kind of “civil society” for publishing? I remember Ted Nelson imagining a system of micropayments for online content. Would that work?

  4. Bob Halloran says:

    To Lee’s comment above; I pick up a BD/DVD of some movie for the grandkids, but I want to put it on the tablet for them to watch on car rides. Per the MPAA rules, my ripping it (thank you MakeMKV & HandBrake) leaves me theoretically liable for $150K for breaking the dubious encryption to create an MP4, even if it never leaves my personal systems.

    I have no problem with compensating authors/musicians/etc, but there should be *some* way of saying “I’ve already bought in , how do I get it in without having to pony up twice for the same content?”

  5. Bob Halloran says:

    Replacement last line: “I’ve already bought it, how do I get it in new-format without having to buy it all over again?” Should have known better than to angle-bracket stuff…

  6. Bob says:

    Re: light trapping
    The figure in the article seems to indicate that the light is trapped in a 1 picometer region. Light travels about a foot (~0.3 m) in a nanosecond, so the photon bounces back and forth ~0.3×10^12 times in a nanosecond. Pretty good mirrors.

    Re: the popemobile. IIRC it was adopted after a scum took some shots at the Pope. I think abandoning it is misguided populism by Pope Francis. If, God forbid, he is assassinated it will be huge setback for civilized people and lead to a lot more ‘tribalism’.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *