[Arm-netbook] HDMI Player Stick as DRM-free Merch Alternative

Jean Flamelle eaterjolly at gmail.com
Wed Jul 25 09:11:24 BST 2018

> All you have in your device is a bit-stream which the end-user can't trust

Not really, since (hopefully) they buy the device through trusted
channels (i.e. a local store with cash).

The cryptographic key, (hopefully) proves that the device was flashed
by the makers of whatever video is loaded on the device, and maybe is
linked to a bitcoin address or something to donate.

The assumption here remains, all content on the device is "free culture".

> Where is the nand (on which the video is stored) -- is it on this stick, or is
> this sort of a multi-use stick that can check the video on other media for
> "compliance" with DRM?

Not a compliance thing; yes---unfortunately---this incentivizes excess/waste.
As Richard said:
> It seems to me that a lot more variety of materials will be required to make
> one of these sticks than an optical disc which is mostly one type of plastic.
> That would seem to make the stick more difficult to recycle than the disc.

> If the stick can't be loaded with new content, then its use cycle will be closer
> to a non-rewritable optical disc.

Optimally, the device could be re-flashed.. only the cryptographic key
would need to be "write-only", preferably with erasure triggered by
any change to the video storage.

> You don't seem to live in the same world as mine: in my world, the MPAA
> and other control-obsessed profiteers spend millions of dollars
> reminding people of that as an excuse for their DRM abuses.

Yes, but we want to do away with that, correct?
So we need to replace that with a more ethical procedure, one which
allows cultural content to be "free as in freedom" while
simultaneously ensuring such cultural content actually exist in a
quality and quantity which allows earthlings to say they actually have
a set of cultures. Moreover creativity and ideas spread, so inventive
non-destructive conflict perpetuates with the culture and we don't
descend into an amoral anarchy with theft and violence just because
struggle to find meaning without theft and violence.

Free culture without the moral imperative of "get as much culture as
we can possibly get" would be a pretty shallow ethic, from my pov.

> How do we "encourage copying, modifying, as well as redistributing the content"
> from an 'Unpause-able Player Stick' that has "air-gap" security?

The security bit is for the private key and hardware integrity.
The 'unpause-able' bit adds to that, however more critically makes the
nature of device immediately recognize-able and encourages use for
social events.

> What is the utility of making it 'Unpause-able'?
> That was always one of the advantages I saw to having user control:
> you can adapt the viewing experience to the realities of your life.

If someone can simply copy the stream onto whatever other device, then
the restriction is basically self-imposed.

Playing upon power-on, without pause, and allowing no scrolling
through the stream, would make this "play stick" a cold arbiter for
social gatherings, so participants can focus on the event or whatever
the video shows them rather than viewing it all with as minimal
overlap as possible or knowledge gaps.

The assumption remains that, if someone is leaving the area, any
argument had over pausing or rewatching what they had missed should be
instantly moot, unless they feel they can push the point to rewatch
from the beginning.

If the video is paused, then someone is waiting for someone else.
Not fun. Low-brow party etiquette.
Having differing knowledge gaps between participants of the gathering,
incentivizes using conversation rather than technology to fill in
those gaps.

> if power is truly our only input we'll have a hard time sending out a signal
> which is compatible with a wide range of displays

This bit is depressing.
Bitstreams should be rendered as vector graphics, and monitors should
have built-in chips to do whatever conversions are necessary to get
the pixels to light.

> Sort of a digital credits meta-data list.

I see where you are going with this.
Someone could separate the audio, between x and x frames too and apply
credits to that portion of the over all file. Still images, as you
mentioned, could be the same way.

Clever, I vote converting all video bitstreams to animated vector
graphics takes 100% priority!

+1 internet


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