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treacherous computing


"I’m increasingly aghast at the erosion of the traditional freedom we’ve enjoyed to do whatever we please with our personal computers -- but intrigued by the science behind it.

My latest revelation came during a recent visit to AMD for a day of briefings, mostly about the Barcelona quad-core Opteron and the Torrenza direct-connect coprocessor interface. During that visit, I got the briefest of updates on ATI’s new GPU (graphics processing unit) technology. It will ship with software that plays movies on Blu-ray discs. The AMD rep spelled it out in words that would have been undiplomatic coming from me: He said that the new chips will “block unauthorized access to the frame buffer.” In short, that means an unauthorized party can’t save the contents of the display to a file on disk unless the content owner approves it." -- Read more (thanks to a thing for a link).