Weird Economics

Why does ticketmaster want to charge me $2.50 for an email I print out, and not charge me anything for sending me the tickets in the mail? That seems really backwards. I just bought tickets for Cosmology at the Frontier: Brian Greene and Stephen Hawing at McCaw Hall.

Vista DRM

There a pretty reasonable podcast about Vista DRM in Security Now #75. Key points:

  • Worse case is that you can’t play content that demnands a super secure path.
  • No known media is requesting the super secure path. It is very questionable if anyone will ever want to take the PR hit of actually using it.
  • Constriction or “fuzzyness” is for the high quality content; not everything on your screen and only if the content requires it.
  • The main device you are probably playing HD-DVD’s on is laptops who have onboard graphics and are exempt from a number of things that people are concerned about.

Update: Just to be fair, there are a number of legit concerns that the Gutmann paper talks about, but even in that paper there are examples that people have let thier imagination run away with. The legit concerns include: side effects to how open hardware is when hardware needs to authenticate to the driver (They should do a public key thing here IMHO), Hardware/CPU costs in dealing with encrypting content across an open pci bus, potential cost for splitting out drivers to mitigate potential protect content trust revocation, the potental for hardware manufactures to destablize a PC when creating an implementation of tilt bits and IP/Licencing costs for the content protection hardware. To me these are pretty minor or requires assuming the worst for a true bad effect.

Podcast Meetup

Last night I went to the Seattle Podcast Meetup in hopes of meeting Jon Udell. I’m guessing that I missed him but the reduced panel and the random people mingling was entertaining. I learned some (retroactively obvious) things like, when you interview someone in a podcast form, have a series of questions and topics outlined out. I also saw that there was a huge focus on making money from podcasting this year. Unlike blogs where the bandwidth and level of involvement scales very well, podcasting is considerably more involving. As a result, the question of making money comes out much earlier and is a more universal concern. It was interesting to hear some of the thoughts about podcasting as a marketing device for retention. There was an example of a museum moving from simple letter Q/A to podcasting the answers to questions and charities podcasting as a way to inexpensively communicate to their donors what they are accomplishing with the donations. Chris Pirillo was very entertaining and brought up finger, a good-old-days protocol I haven’t thought about for almost a decade. Overall a fun little evening.