Mark Bult Design: San Francisco, CA, Established 1988

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Tuesday, August 02, 2005

Don't trust Trusted Computing

"My data is my life, and I won't keep it in a strongbox that someone else has the keys for."

Cory Doctorow, on the news that Apple's kernel makes use of Intel's controversial Trusted Computing technology [ 1 | 2 | 3 ], swears he will switch away from Apple in a heartbeat if it comes true, and maybe even have his Apple tattoo removed.

As Cory points out, Trusted Computing renders the concept of "open formats" meaningless. You can have a program that writes documents in a supposedly "open" file format like .html or .mp3, but Trusted Computing can restrict .mp3s created by, say, iTunes, to only play in iTunes. Or another example, you can have .html files that are only authorized/recognized by a certain browser.

This is the sort of thing we expect from huge corporate monopolies from Washington state, not from Cupertino. Let's hope other Mac addicts rattle the cages furiously and loudly about this dangerous development.

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