Tuesday, January 24, 2012

The War on Copyright AKA General Purpose Computers AKA Software Defined Radio

Scary stuff.

He makes the argument that SOPA and the like are merely the next wave of assaults on our freedom. Ignorance, greed, and fear will lead to more invasive technology and laws. He connects the dots between copyright and general purpose computing and even things like Software Defined Radios. The "Evil They" would  prevent you from doing things like modifying your UV-3R to expand the usable frequencies. Or manufacture your own AR-15 in your garage.
"Consider radio. Radio regulation until today was based on the idea that the properties of a radio are fixed at the time of manufacture, and can't be easily altered. You can't just flip a switch on your baby monitor and interfere with other signals. But powerful software-defined radios (SDRs) can change from baby monitor to emergency services dispatcher or air traffic controller, just by loading and executing different software. This is why the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) considered what would happen when we put SDRs in the field, and asked for comment on whether it should mandate that all software-defined radios should be embedded in “trusted computing" machines. Ultimately, the question is whether every PC should be locked, so that their programs could be strictly regulated by central authorities."

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