DRM (Digital Rights Management)
There was a bit of a flurry when news sources reported that Intel had added DRM capabilities to its Pentium D chip. Intel immediately denied that, which is politically interesting because there's no doubt at all that Intel WILL have DRM enforcement. Obviously Intel finds themselves in a uncomfortable place here: they have to support this, but they know full well that the general public isn't pleased.
That's a recipe for secrecy, double-talk, weasel words and deception. Intel's specific reaction here:
While Intel continues to work with the industry to support other content protection technologies, we have not added any unannounced DRM technologies in either the Pentium D processor or the Intel 945 Express Chipset family.
I like that "have not added any unannounced DRM technologies". I bet more than a few PR types had a gander at that before it was released for public consumption.
This stuff makes folks uneasy. The underlying reality is that this is Big Brother built into hardware, effectively an overlord operating system that watches for transgession. Once you are watching, it's no great leap to imagine watching for other things. Gee, child molestors use computers and so do terrorists. Any bets against the idea that someone isn't pursing their lips and wondering just how to get Big Brother by those nasty folks who just don't buy the "ends justify the means" arguments? Once the camel has his nose in the tent, there's always someone measuring to see how the whole beast will fit, and no doubt designing drapes to keep you from noticing the intrusion.
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