posted Dec 14, 2000

it has begun - from Hack the Planet
Free Speech
12/14/2000; 5:15:56 PM

'Richard Stallman, The Right to Read (1997): "Frank was in prison, not for pirate reading, but for possessing a debugger."

'Adobe Acrobat eBook Reader: "If you are a software programmer, you should note that the Adobe Acrobat eBook Reader's security implementation does not allow program debuggers to be executed on the machine while the Adobe Acrobat eBook Reader is running."'

For those who don't program, the reason this is significant is that a debugger is a powerful and vital tool for programming that can be applied to any program and used to examine its internal state at any time, along with a host of other powerful features. By using a debugger, one could conceivably extract the text of an eBook into the clear easily. They want to block that, so they are implementing controls on what you can do with your computer while using their product.

What's scary is how much control they are exerting on computers that don't even belong to them.  I'd advise against using the eBook Reader on general principles. Hope that we aren't someday required to install limiters like this; it most certainly could happen.

 

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