RE: OT: mass installation on XBox
> That should be interesting!
> If that thing ever gets put together and M$ thinks it is illegal I
> love to see a court battle over that in an european court. Who in the
> hell are those people that think they can tell me I can't construct a
> marslander out of a ford taurus? Or use a piece of hardware I bought
> paid for to what I want it to do? This is ridiculous.
The key here is to give the lawyers an alternative. If backed into a
corner, they will do the ridiculous thing in order to protect corporate
profits. However, I believe that if an alternative is provided, then
this move would not be taken.
The issue is not the modification of the hardware, per se, but rather
the data that can then be pirated after the modification is made.
Therefore, the one alternative is to limit piracy. In order to do that,
strict policing of data streams is necessary.
So that is your choice: give up freedom to modify hardware, or submit
all data moving in and out of your control to public scrutiny. Since the
former is both distasteful and fundamentally impossible to enforce, the
later is inevitable, IMHO.
Encryption makes subjecting data to scrutiny difficult. So it is likely
that anti-encryption, anti-obfuscation laws would be passed along side
any scrutiny laws.
Pick your poison: inability to modify the container, or have every bit
of information you generate or consume scrutinized. Personally, I think
that the former is the lesser of two evils, by far. From an enforcement
point of view, I think that corporate America would agree. (E.g. it is
much less expensive to enforce hardware modification laws than police
all data conduits).
(I will mention the third option, which is to not worry about enforcing
data ownership at all. This policy simply will not, and cannot fly in
this economic, legal or political environment. There is a small class of
data which can still be sold in this context, namely that which the
buyer has no incentive to share, or cannot share effectively. Three
examples that come to mind are data that describes the buyer, data that
is expensive to share, and data that is time-sensitive. (Of course, the
seller never has an incentive to share))