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Comment: Re:"Proprietary So I Get Paid", from Bruce Perens? (Score 1) 126

Hi AC,

Matt Ettus has a story about a Chinese cloner of the USRP. The guy tells Chinese customers that it is illegal for them to buy from Ettus, they must buy from the cloner instead. Then, when they have problems and require serivce, he tells them to get it from Ettus. Who of course made nothing from their device sales and can not afford to service them.

This is not following the rules of Open anything. It's counterfeiting.

So, sometimes it is necessary to change the license a little so that you will not be a chump. I discussed the fact that the hardware is fully disclosed but not Open Hardware licensed with RMS, the software is 100% Free Software, and there is a regulatory chip you can't write. We can go for Respects Your Freedom certification that way..

I've paid my dues as far as "Open" is concerned, and Chris has too. This is all we can give you this time.

Comment: Re:Why custom punched end panels ? (Score 1) 126

The case selection was so that we'd have at least one case that would work. We did not take much time on it. We'd be happy to have other people designing and selling cases.

The version after this one requires cases that look like real radios. That is going to be a bigger problem. We don't yet have a mold-design partner, etc.

Comment: Re:GNUradio? (Score 1) 126

We implement it as a chip that intercepts the serial bus to the VFO chip, and disallows certain frequencies. On FCC-certified equipment we might have to make that chip and the VFO chip physically difficult to get at by potting them or something. This first unit is test-equipment and does not have the limitation.

Comment: Re:How about international versions? (Score 1) 126

Anyone who is good at electronics can get around regulatory lockouts. We're not allowed to make it easy. But nor are we technically able to make it impossible.

U.S. regulation only allows Part 95 certified radios to be used on GMRS, and Part 95 requires that the radio be pretty well locked down. But all of those Asian imports are certified for Part 90 and there are lots of users putting them on both Amateur and GMRS. If FCC wanted to push the issue with any particular licensee, they could.

Comment: Re:awesome! (Score 1) 126

The D-STAR issue is not really ICOM's fault. JARL designed D-STAR (not ICOM) and put the AMBE codec in it because nobody believed that you could have a good open codec at the time. We now have Codec2 (a project I evangelized and recruited the developer) which is fully open. And we do have a software AMBE decoder in Open Source, although the patents won't let us use it. That is why I am working on the patent issue (as noted in the last slide of the presentation).

I know about the counterfeit FTDI chips, and Matt Ettus told me what has happened with the Chinese clone of USRP. We know what to do.

Comment: Re:Many are leaving ham radio too (Score 1) 126

And it's because of No-Code. We looked at the licensing statistics and thought we'd preside over the end of Amateur Radio in our own lifetimes. That's the main reason I worked on no-code. There was really strong opposition among the old contingent, and ARRL fought to preserve the code for as long as they could. Someone even asked me to let Amateur Radio die with dignity rather than sully it with no-code hams. Gee, I am glad that fight is over.

Comment: Re: Many are leaving ham radio too (Score 1) 126

Though a nice compromise might be to allow such things in certain bands only.

That is why there are different radio services. Hams really only have a few corners here and there of the radio spectrum. There really is a service for everyone, although you should be aware that the entire HF spectrum would fit in a few WiFi channels, and all of the Amateur HF spectrum would fit in one. So, we don't really have the bandwidth at all. And people who want the bandwidth on UHF already have WiFi and the various sorts of RF links, etc.

Comment: Re:Many are leaving ham radio too (Score 1) 126

The internet really sucks and we don't want another one on ham radio. Nor could we possibly have the bandwidth to support one. The entire HF spectrum fits in just a few WiFi channels.

To satisfy the demands of the "it should be anything goes" crowd, we have CB radio. And there are all of the common carriers, etc.

So, I can't sympathize, and even if I did, there are not the technical resources there.

Sorry.

Comment: Cryptographic keys (Score 1) 126

I am afraid that's not the way it works. Public-key encryption doesn't really give you the capability to decode the communication of two other parties unless you get the secret (rather than public) key, which they have no reason to give you. There is also a session key that is randomly generated and lives only for the duration of the connection, and there is the potential for VPNs or tunneling that further obscure the actual communication. It's actually very difficult for a monitoring station to even get 100% of the packets reliably, although the two stations in the communication do get them. So you may not be able to reconstruct all of the bits in the stream, and this will break decryption too.

All of this adds up to so many technical hurdles that in practice you have to be NSA to decode the communication, hams who are attempting to self-regulate will not have the appropriate resources.

Comment: Re: People don't do this anymore? (Score 1) 32

by damn_registrars (#49139019) Attached to: Lizard Squad Claims Attack On Lenovo Days After Superfish

The fact that it was not onstalled in the "business line" machines indicates that they KNEW it was crooked before they did it. They just hoped the sheeple...er I mean consumers wouldn't notice.

That is one way to look at it. A competing hypothesis is that the business line systems are more profitable in general, while the consumer lines are subsidized by the software that they install on them before shipping. Hence the consumer level ones were being consistently filled up with an ever-increasing load of crapware to make them more (if only marginally) profitable. Whether there was ever any ethics considered by the company is not clear.

Comment: Re:People don't do this anymore? (Score 1) 32

by damn_registrars (#49138303) Attached to: Lizard Squad Claims Attack On Lenovo Days After Superfish

I've never met anyone with a lenovo for their at home use, always dell's or hp's.

Well, some people really love to embrace mediocrity.

And anyone that I've met that did have a lenovo used it just for business.

The business Lenovo systems - ThinkPad laptops and ThinkStation workstations - were not part of this as Lenovo never installed superfish on any of them. This only applied to their mediocre consumer-level units that were sold as Lenovos with other model names.

Just another reason why I only buy ThinkPads for my own use. Home, work, etc; I won't buy anything else. Lenovo knows better than to risk that golden goose.

Comment: So THAT is what that was (Score 1) 32

by damn_registrars (#49138267) Attached to: Lizard Squad Claims Attack On Lenovo Days After Superfish
I was trying to load a lenovo forum on the superfish situation yesterday and was puzzled why it was just showing me G-rated pictures of teenagers staring at cameras. I figured something had gone amiss with the code running the forum, or something was weird with my browser that moment. I then found the information I wanted elsewhere.

In other words, this wasn't a very impressive hack.

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