Thursday, 31-May-07 14:58
Following comments

I've been using co.mments.com to follow discussions I find interesting, as they've had a nice, clean interface and a cool Javascript scriptlet allowing one-click subscription. However, lately they are suffering from constant slowdowns and errors, which is making the service essentially useless.

What other comment following services would you recommend?

Thursday, 31-May-07 11:07
More Mari-Leen

Thanks to the tip from Merten, I bought Mari-Leen's "Rahutu Tuhkatriinu" from http://www.cdmarket.eu/. Good prices, slow-ish delivery.

Have to admit that I like this a lot. The title song is of course a cover, but the rest of the album works really well, too. "Suure linna inglid" is very catchy, yet varies nicely between slow and fast parts, and Mari-Leen's voice suits perfectly to this music style.

There are a couple of weak songs, too (as always), but the only real complaint I have is with the CD cover design... It makes a perfectly pretty young woman look like a crossbreed between Ronald ~McDonald and a Realdoll.

Definitely worth the money. I could easily see this become mainstream in Finland.

Wednesday, 30-May-07 19:03
CBS snags last.fm

Last.fm, my favourite online music service, has been snatched by CBS for a nice, lump sum of $280 million USD. Congratulations to everyone involved!

Now, the question is, will CBS "get it", or will they kill Last.fm by "innovating" on new business models. Flickr has survived relatively unscathed as a part of a larger entity, but CBS is old money, and they've got lots of old farts making decisions. It remains to be seen whether the DNAs of these two companies are compatible.

My guess is that they aren't, and we'll see a slow decline of Last.fm from a hassle-free, personal radio station into a product-placement and advertisement -ridden, badly encoded stream that chooses songs based on who pays the most money instead of what the user actually might prefer.

For some reason, I am feeling fairly cynical this week. Nothing ever works quite the way you would hope it to, and at some point it just gets to you, you know?

Wednesday, 30-May-07 17:41
CSS story not yet over

The DVD Content Scrambling System, which was found to be "ineffective" in the Helsinki District Court, won't die so easily. Tietokone.fi reports that the prosecutor has decided to take the case to a higher court. So the district court decision will be challenged, and it'll take a few months before we get a new result.

In my opinion, this is a good thing. Hopefully, the court of appeals will take a stand on the "organized discussion" -part as well.

Wednesday, 30-May-07 14:36
Feature Frenzy in Japan

This interesting article lists the top features that the Japanese cell phone users want then they're upgrading. Highly interesting:

Q2: When upgrading your mobile phone, the existence of which features are important? (Sample size=1,000, multiple answer)

1. Memory card             29.4%
2. One Seg television      23.2%
3. Music playback          20.0%
4. Infra-red transmission  16.6%
5. FeLiCa, Osaifu Keitai, 
   electronic cash         14.0%

Notice how infrared beats Bluetooth hands down, and WLAN is not popular at all. GPS is bubbling strongly under at number seven, but what I find interesting is the popularity of smart card services and electronic cash. The Japanese market has been enjoying cell phones with embedded smart cards for a couple of years now, and you can already do a lot of things from paying a subway trip or at the local grocery store to reserving seats in a train... It's great to see that they've gained consumer acceptance so fast.

It's also interesting to see that mobile TV is a big hit. No wonder really, you need to keep yourself entertained on those long subway trips... Which also explains the memory card and the music playback. In fact, it's not a big surprise that the most wanted features are the ones which relate to the daily life, which, for many people, consists of work, home, and the trips between. Which, in Japan, can be very long and boring. Now if I could figure out why infrared is so popular... Synchronization? Backups?

Tuesday, 29-May-07 21:57
Follow that bus!

Niko tips off http://transport.wspgroup.fi/hklkartta/ - a mashup service which allows you to follow, in real time, certain buses in Helsinki transport. Not only that, it'll show you the routes and nearest bus stops using the latest in Google Maps technology.

Awesome, though the service still looks like a demo more than anything else. But yeah, I would use this. There's something hypnotic and organic about watching buses move...

Tuesday, 29-May-07 16:07
OH NOES

lolcode.com - where teh w4nn4b3 1337 program!

The following code prints a file to the screen.

HAI
CAN HAS STDIO?
PLZ OPEN FILE "LOLCATS.TXT"?
	AWSUM THX
		VISIBLE FILE
	O NOES
		INVISIBLE "ERROR!"
KTHXBYE

(OK, this is really bad. But I felt like it, since my brain is slowly turning to mush. It's only Tuesday and I'm in my eight teleconference or something...)

(Via BB.)

Saturday, 26-May-07 10:59
Treating a reporter right

Heh. If you're an IT entrepreneur, you'll meet six reporter types. Valleyvag tells you how to deal with them. My favourite is the blogger:

Oh god, everything could go wrong. The blogger probably has less experience, more unearned arrogance ("I have pageviews in the triple digits!"), and half the resources to properly research your story. They're more likely to have an agenda, and it's more likely to be wrong.
Friday, 25-May-07 16:20
DVD copy protection "ineffective", rules Finnish court

Just released, Turre Legal says that CSS has been found officially ineffective:

In an unanimous decision released today, Helsinki District Court ruled that Content Scrambling System (CSS) used in DVD movies is “ineffective”. The decision is the first in Europe to interpret new copyright law amendments that ban the circumvention of “effective technological measures”.

The way I interpret this is that it is therefore legal to crack the DVD content protection for your own purposes, e.g. watching it on Linux computers, or converting it to something which can be played back on a cell phone. Obviously, it is still not legal to distribute the content without permission... But that wasn't the point. The point was to find out exactly what does "organized discussion" mean in the context of cryptanalysis/DRM. Unfortunately, I don't think this was achieved, as the CSS restrictions management system was deemed outright ineffective without actual decision on what constitutes "organized discussion". But it's still a reasonable result.

Thanks to the people who went through the trouble of organizing this. Much like a lot of the copyright discussion in Finland, this was a grassroots effort by a number of people, who decided to give themselves in to the police as criminals for discussing DVD encryption.

Friday, 25-May-07 13:00
A regular Super Trouper

Yes, I like ABBA. I've seen Bjorn Again live. Twice. I'll wait a moment for you to stop snickering.

...

...

Anyway, I've wanted to see the "Mamma Mia" musical for quite some time now, and now that the tour has arrived in Helsinki, took advantage of it. And I wasn't disappointed. While the story was paper-thin, and the characters were about as complicated as a two-by-four, it didn't really matter. It was just a good excuse to hear all the hits, put in new contexts, a lot of it well-timed. "Winner takes it all" got the audience roaring after the first bar - and I guess that was really the point: nothing too complicated, just a load of feelgood for two hours. And I have to admit that I woke up refreshed and relaxed and inexplicably happy this morning.

One thing that struck me was really how incredibly sad the hit songs actually were, now that they were actually subtitled (for some reason, I don't usually check the lyrics), and you saw them in a (sort of) context. Lots of happy faces, but pain and sorrow beneath the masks. But I guess that is a part of the fascination.

(No, no lycra for me. The world just wouldn't be ready.)

Thursday, 24-May-07 12:56
Lazyweb request: bug tracking database?

Ok, now having tried to install JIRA, Codebeamer and Bugzilla, I've come to conclusion that Janne and Mysql do not mix. I've spent several hours of my life reading documentation, tracking unknown files (Jira is so wonderful: they tell you you MUST install certain files, except that the link to those files is broken, and they don't even tell you what the files are, so you can't track them down on your own. Codebeamer documentation is worse than most open source projects, and it assumes that you're installing on a clean server. Which I am not. And Bugzilla - well, something has broken my ubuntu mysql installation, so apt-get is of no help.)

The question is: is there a free bug tracking database which does not use a SQL database, and which would be, like, actually easy to install?

(And please do not try to help me to install any of the above-mentioned things. I am so frustrated with them right now I will probably track you down by your IP address, and whip you senseless with a piece of Cat5 cabling.)

Monday, 21-May-07 13:44
Cybertrash

Check out Remy Tassou, a man who builds art out of abandoned electronics. Awesome, though some rudimentary French skills might be required :-)

Monday, 21-May-07 01:00
Clearing Eclipse validation markers

Note to self: the only clean way to remove Eclipse validation markers (if you ran a validator to a wrong file) is to remove the file manually from outside Eclipse, then run "Replace With -> Latest from HEAD". I couldn't find any proper documentation on this via Google-fu, so let it be here in case someone else needs this.

Anyhoo, lots of computer nastiness today. Tried to install some common web software on my Mac, only to find out that the program I was installing required a previous version of the said programming language, but the guy who maintains the port refuses to even distribute the earlier version of the said programming language, and that the other stuff I was installing needed the new version of that programming language, which did install, but then it refused to communicate with a well known database system I had just installed, claiming I need a newer version, even though I already had a latest version installed, and then it was already down to compiling from source and after a few hours it all essentially came down to a lot of handwaving, cursing, and repetitive and liberal application of "rm -rf".

People often tell me how JSPWiki is nice because it's so easy to install. I often wondered about this - JSPWiki in my opinion is not particularly easy to install: there are lots of hidden traps you can fall into, if you're not careful.

Today I realized what a pain it can be to install certain open source software if you're not running on a machine which happens to get readily packaged versions. On a decent Ubuntu machine I would've been able to install everything with just a few commands, but having to install open source from the source drove my nerves up the wall at record speed. I had forgotten what a colossal pain in the ass it can be... While having source is nice, needing it is often a sign of Awful Code Whose Author Should Be Whacked On The Head.

At least the pain of installing JSPWiki tends to be relatively constant across platforms.

Wednesday, 16-May-07 18:27
Troll whisperers and bulletin boards

A wonderful article by Cory Doctorow in Information Week about how exactly do you calm down trolls and keep the discussion civil on message boards. It fits the current Lex Kuronen -discussion like a glove.

Hint: the right answer is NOT more moderation, just like the answer to crime is not to locking everyone up (just in case).

(Sorry, I'll switch to Finnish from this point on.)

Eräs idea, jolla olen leikitellyt, olisi se, että voisi itse asiassa olla hyvä, että jokaisella julkisella, pysyväisluonteisella keskustelupalstalla olisi "velvollinen henkilö". Tämä ei siis tarkoita vastuullista päätoimittajaa, vaan enemmänkin luonnollista henkilöä, jolla on ylläpitovastuu järjestelmästä. De facto tällainenhän joka järjestelmässä jo on, mutta monesti heidän tavoittamisensa voi olla hankalaa. Velvollinen henkilö toimisi niin keskustelijoiden kuin mahdollisesti viranomaisten ensimmäisenä kontaktina, mikäli jotain inhaa tapahtuu. Tuomioistuin ja/tai poliisi sitten tarpeen vaatiessa antaa päätöksen - kuten nykyäänkin - ja velvoittaa tämän velvollisen henkilön sitten toimimaan asianmukaisesti. Tai sitten käyttäjä voi pyytää velvolliselta henkilöltä poistoa, ja tämä sitten joko tekee niin tai sitten ei (jonka jälkeen voi ottaa yhteyttä poliisiin).

Lähinnä ajan sitä takaa, että ylläpitäjien tulisi olla selkeästi merkittyjä, jotta heihin voi ottaa tarpeen vaatiessa yhteyttä. Samanlainen ilmoitusvelvollisuushan on jo käytössä esimerkiksi henkilörekisterien suhteen. Sen sijaan se, että heitä pidettäisiin vastuullisina kaikesta kirjoittelusta olisi - kuten moni on jo ehtinyt huomauttaa - käytännössä mahdotonta, ja ajaisi monta keskustelupalstaa joko pois Suomesta, piilottaisi ne darknetteihin tai sitten lopettaisi ne kokonaan - ja parhaimmassakin tapauksessa saisi aikaan epämääräisen paranoian ilmapiirin. Minä nimittäin ainakin tasan tarkkaan sulkisin suoraan sellaiset sivustot, joita ylläpidän kavereideni iloksi, mutta joita en itse ehdi hirveästi seurata.

En toki usko, että tällä erityisesti saataisiin kuriin ulkomaisten palstojen huutelua, mutta tämä sopisi melko hyvin myös hajautettuihin uutisjärjestelmiin, kuten USENET. USENETin ylläpitäjillä kun on jo mahdollisuus poistaa viestejä (spämmille tehdään tätä jatkuvasti, joskin jokainen uutispalvelin tietenkin päättää itse, totteleeko se poistokomentoa), mutta valvontaan eivät kenenkään rahkeet tietenkään riitä; ja ylläpitäjien laittaminen vastuuseen siitä, että Australiasta on postitettu viesti yhdysvaltalaiselle palvelimelle, joka nyt sattuu automaattisesti leviämään Suomeen, on lievästikin sanottuna täysin älytön ajatus.

Tuesday, 15-May-07 13:56
Local minima theory

The great thing about travel is that it takes you out of your comfort zone.

A friend of mine had a theory once: she used to talk about how people "get stuck in local minima". This is a loan from physics and mathematics, where a local minimum means a place where you need to use extra effort to get away from. For example, rainwater collects itself as ponds in local minimums: you need to actively send it to the global minimum: the storm drain. This is the same reason why proper design is important in a bathroom!

Anyway, people tend to get stuck in a local minimum: they find their comfort zone, and stay there. Many people never bother to take the extra effort needed to climb out of the hole they've dug, and see if there would be a better "local minimum". It's uncertain effort, because you could be in a global minimum, and every other option would be worse...

I'm not saying that people are bad because they do not seek life outside the comfort zone. But I am saying that it's important to realize when you are in a comfort zone, that there could be other options as well - but that it will require conscious effort to get out of them. And if you're happy with the decision to be wherever you are, all power to you. But, in my opinion, you need to make the conscious decision. Maybe you are already where you want, or maybe the walls are just too steep to climb out. But sometimes you see people stuck on what is essentially a flat area, and they just keep complaining, but they don't seem to have the ability to start finding something better, just because it will make your life slightly worse for a while.

I guess there's a law in there somewhre: "In the absence of external forces, people get stuck in their comfort zone."

That's why I love traveling: it provides constant nudges which keep putting you to situations you're not comfortable in. If you choose to look, you will see.

Tuesday, 15-May-07 10:15
"Oh, the hair thieves! The hair thieves, they come in the night… Steal your hair, they do! Sell us into slavery!"

Any Eddie Izzard fan should get a chuckle out of this one: Apparently, hair thieves are prowling in Myanmar.

(Via Boing Boing.)

Monday, 14-May-07 10:02
Off again

This weekend, I've mostly been traveling... Arrived to Helsinki from London on Saturday morning, and left yesterday evening for Düsseldorf. The more mathematically inclined can see that it's just one night at home, before going again.

I'm pretty glad the current stretch is almost over. No big trips coming up before Midsummer (that I know of), and I could possibly concentrate on getting some work done. Not that I mind travel, but things tend to pick up in May (because everyone seems to want to have a clean desk before summer holidays).

Anyhoo, time for a presentation. Let's hope I don't make too much of an ass of myself; I didn't have as much time as I would've liked to prepare for this (he said, knowing that at least part of the audience reads this blog...)

Sunday, 13-May-07 13:17
Finland wants mandatory moderation on all discussion boards

This is laughable: The national prosecutor wants mandatory moderators on all discussion boards. Why? Because currently there's a loophole in the legislation: if nobody moderates the messages, every person is responsible for what they write. However, if there is moderation, the moderators have responsibility for the messages.

So, if you have e.g. a blog, you suddenly become liable for everything that everyone else says on the comment section. Meaning that you must, in practice, read everything that everyone writes. For a blog this is probably still doable, but for a moderately active discussion board or a wiki... no chance.

Here's again an idea which, from a very narrow point of view, makes sense - but fails when thinking of the grander scheme of things:

  • You cannot control foreign sites. Meaning that USENET, blogspot.com and, well, close to 90% of everything is outside the reach of the law. And, obviously, people who habitually send in "bad" messages, will just shift to those places. There are some scary possibilities here if Finland starts thinking - just like the US - that Finnish law is also applicable on foreign soil.
  • What if someone buys something from a spam link and sues you for false advertising? Just asking...
  • We already have legislation which allows the police to get the IP address of the suspect, and figure out who he is. So, instead of making *everyone* the police, the police should be doing their job.
  • Because most people haven't got the slightest idea what is legal and what is not, it's probable that the moderators will start deleting messages "just in case". I know some sites which already do this - and I would hate to see every single discussion board to become like them.
  • What about copyright violations? Will the moderators will be responsible for those as well? Probably yes - so you must become a real police trying to figure out if e.g. an avatar image is stolen from somewhere. The easy solution: ban all images and links.
  • Large sites become near-impossible - or at least very expensive - to govern and control.
  • Mandatory moderation just stinks of censorship - or at least the first step towards it. You see, once such a large-scale system is in place, you can start enforcing things like "no discussion on topic X", and the scared little moderators will comply, because they don't want to go to jail.
  • What about other legal issues, like falsifying information? Stock-pump schemes? Are you responsible also if someone says that "he has good knowledge of stock XXX going up in the next few days?"
  • What about sites where everyone is a moderator, like a wiki?

All in all, this idea seems to be born straight out of an ass of some control freak. I wouldn't be surprised if the media industry was behind this: it would give them the ability to close whole websites or go after the moderators, if there's any "organized discussion" on copyright legislation. It would be easier and cheaper than trying to figure out IP addresses of the actual problem people, and just as effective. Not that they didn't actually do anything, but hey, a prosecutor's job is to find a scape goat!

Update: Apologies to Jari Lindholm for poor choice of words - when I sent "media industry", I really meant "entertainment industry" as a sub-species. I agree with your viewpoint that unmoderated discussion boards are probably a good thing to media houses. I was more concerned about this becoming yet another way with which e.g. discussion on piracy, crime, cryptography, and other grey areas could be stifled.

Sunday, 13-May-07 00:17
Sorry

I would like to apologize to the rest of Europe for Krisse Salminen (the lady in pink). It's a joke, and a very bad joke indeed.

Wednesday, 09-May-07 14:58
Open source as a religion?

Well, I've heard comments to that effect. Believe in it, and you shall be saved. Disbelieve in the goodness of Open Source, and thou shalt be damned. While open source has obviously some good things going for it, many people also agree that it's not a solution for everything.

I have a theory: there is no such thing as open source as an entity which could be understood. It's as elusive as, say, a "mobile phone user." Which we often refer to, but at least there we do understand that there are many different reasons for a person to use a mobile phone. Companies put in a lot of money trying to understand and "segment consumers" to figure out what kind of products sell.

Open Source is really a tool for accomplishing something. The aims can then wildly differ. If you asked all hammer owners, whether hammers in general are good, you would probably get overwhelmingly positive answers - because they bought the hammer because they needed it. The same way, if you talk to people who have already made the choice of open sourcing something, you'll get positive feedback.

It's not that important whether open source is good, but it would be far more important to understand the motivations of the people who have chosen open source. I think we have different kinds of open source: "no care ware" from people who just don't want to maintain small pieces of code; "debtware" from people who think paying back to the OSS community is okay; "communityware" from people who enjoy the feeling of being community leaders; "cheapware" from companies who realize trying to keep up with a custom fork of an OSS project is way too expensive; etc. Different motivations, different kinds of open source.

Just a few disassembled thoughts. But I'm really beginning to think that we should break open "open source" as a box and then try to put it back together to see if it still fits. If open source is becoming a commodity, then perhaps it should be treated like a commodity instead of a big, large, idealistic expression of Freedom of Speech and Basic Human Rights?

(LazyWeb request: anyone studied this yet? I'm sure, but I'm too lazy to Google, especially since I have a telco starting in five... Fifth one today. Yay. And tomorrow, UK. When I get old and start to wonder where did all the time go, I'll just look at this blog and my Flickr stream and go "oh, right".)

Wednesday, 09-May-07 00:38
We shall return to the Moon using cheesy effects!

NASA's "Returning to the Moon" video, containing the cheesiest special effects ever. I mean - how could anyone claim that moon landings were faked, if NASA can't produce better stuff than this with all the special effects technology of today? *grin*

(Via Collision Detection.)

Tuesday, 08-May-07 20:42
Second-hand CD ban

Yup. It had to happen: selling of used CD's is getting slowly banned. Why, you may ask? Perhaps because the music industry does not get a cut in these sales, so they consider it a theft pretty much like downloading music off the internet. Ars Technica reports:

On Florida, Utah, and soon in Rhode Island and Wisconsin, selling your used CDs to the local record joint will be more scrutinized than then getting a driver's license in those states. For retailers in Florida, for instance, there's a "waiting period" statue that prohibits them from selling used CDs that they've acquired until 30 days have passed. Furthermore, the Florida law disallows stores from providing anything but store credit for used CDs.

Why this trend, and why now? It's difficult to say, but to be sure, there is no love lost between retailers who sell used CDs and the music industry. The Federal Trade Commission has scrutinized the music industry for putting unfair pressures on retailers who sell used CDs, following a long battle between the music industry and retailers in the mid 90s. The music industry dislikes used CD sales because they don't get a cut of subsequent sales after the first. Now, via the specter of piracy, new legislation is cropping up that will make it even less desirable to sell second-hand goods. Can laws targeting used DVDs be far behind?

I was under the impression that most musicians love music, and they have extensive collections of new and old stuff. I was also under the impression that they were pretty poor, and therefore like to buy used CDs. And, I have also been told that there are companies which specialize in second-hand music, and that they are the favourite spots for many a beginning artist.

But of course, to protect the profits, er, musicians, these evil shops must die.

Consider this: when music becomes all digital, and if DRM becomes prevalent, there will be no such thing as "used" music anymore. You have to always buy from the source - at the price set by the source. No more CD swaps, no more 2nd hand stores, no more rummaging through super-sale boxes filled with dusty vintage music. Maybe not today, and maybe not in twenty years, but eventually there will be a large amount of music only available as digital bits without any physical manifestation which you could trade. And if this trend continues, this may become sooner than expected.

(Via pretty much everywhere.)

Sunday, 06-May-07 13:57
Spam in Jaiku

There's an old saying from a smart man (and I seem to recall it was Matt Jones): "Social Software is the kind of software which can be spammed."

So, I wasn't exactly surprised to start finding spam comments on my Jaiku account. "Buy Phentermine", it says, and it's from a Jaiku account named "buyphentermine". And I'm pretty sure it's not the only one.

I suppose this is a good indication that Jaiku is growing: it's important enough to get spammers joining. Let's see how they do in this inevitable onslaught of vermins.

The good thing is that I can delete the comment myself. However, if this becomes common, I - and others - probably won't bother...

Friday, 04-May-07 18:15
Rahutu Tuhkatriinu

OK, gotta admit it: I love this. A young Estonian singer remakes a Finnish dance hit from 1980s - and ends up with something way better than the original. Well, you can compare them yourself. If the languages sounds similar, that's just because Finnish and Estonian are related, but I have to admit I understand only a few words here and there. I actually like the way Estonian sounds: It's kinda like Finnish with a soft slavic touch, spoken by a Finn who's forgotten the words and is making most of them up as he goes along.

Gah. I feel a trip to Estonia approaching... (Unless I can find a web store that sells this, or they release this before I manage to hop to a ferry.)

(Via darling.)

Wednesday, 02-May-07 22:56
Talk tour...

I'll be talking in the Intland Expertenforum on wikis and social software in enterprise use:

Düsseldorf: 14.5
München: 15.5
Hamburg: 16.5

The seminars are free, and arranged in co-operation of Sun Microsystems. Feel free to drop by, if you want to hear me rambling incoherently on things I claim some vague knowledge on... Be warned that parts of the seminars are likely to be in German. Not my part, though - I'm not trusting my rusty German that much.

Wednesday, 02-May-07 11:27
Loyalty day?

WTF? Loyalty day?

NOW, THEREFORE, I, GEORGE W. BUSH, President of the United States of America, do hereby proclaim May 1, 2007, as Loyalty Day. I call upon the people of the United States to participate in this national observance and to display the flag of the United States on Loyalty Day as a symbol of pride in our Nation.

Loyalty day? Loyalty day?

When exactly did the world become a bad comic book?

(Via Boing boing.)

Wednesday, 02-May-07 00:38
Another illegal number

09 F9 11 02 9D 74 E3 5B D8 41 56 C5 63 56 88 C0

It might not look like it, but the string of characters above is one of the Big Secrets of Mankind. It is the so-called AACS processing key, which allows you to decrypt every single HD-DVD movie released until a few days ago. Now, AACS is sending threatening letters to anyone who dares to utter those magical incantations, because they are EVIL! So, of course, everyone and their cousin are posting them on the web.

Actually, knowing those numbers is not enough to crack AACS. You still need to know how it works (and of course, a proof of concept already exists.) So it's not like we're talking about a cracking service.

The point being: any DRM-enabled system needs to give both the encrypted data and the decryption mechanism to the hands of the user. A smart user will figure out the decryption mechanism. And once one smart user figures it out, the whole world will know. So I just don't really understand why people bother. It's just so futile, and the money used in all this crap would probably be better used in doing other things - like given to the artists, or to hunt the real pirates - the guys who copy the disk 1:1, copy protection and all, and sell them for a cheap price on the markets and the internet. Those are the ones who're damaging the industry, not the people who are trying to play their legally purchased movies on their own hardware.

We all know a lot of things, which are dangerous and illegal. I know how to kill people with my bare hands and a bunch of different weapons - I trained it for years (though I probably would lose in any real fight; haven't been training in ages). I'm even a pretty decent shot, if you give me a gun. Knowing how to do that is not illegal - but using that knowledge for the wrong purpose is, and absolutely should be. The same thing should apply here: knowing a number should not be illegal. Using it to distribute a movie is, and it should be. And in my book, knowing how to kill people is a lot more dangerous than knowing how to decrypt a movie.

(Here's the number in decimal, so knowing and copying the following number into your blog could be illegal, depending on your legislation: 13,256,278,887,989,457,651,018,865,901,401,704,640.)


Private comments? Drop me an email. Or complain in a nearby pub - that'll help.



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