This isn't an exception, either. This is the norm.
Edit: membership now renewed
It's the "Give % of sales to non-profit of your choice" option in Amazon.
That's the reason I've not started using it. Online stores use all kinds of indicators (user agent, OS, number of searches for similar items, etc) to jack up prices when they think they can get away with it, and I suspect this metric is very relevant in that context.
I just donate to EFF and others directly.
Also this doesn't apply to Entertainment or Telemetrics portions. So your car could be straight up spying on you, or your manufacturer can leave unpatched security holes in your "Entertainment" system (which has already been used ( http://spectrum.ieee.org/cars-that-think/transportation/syst...) to remotely hack your car), and there is nothing you can legally do. You can't even deeply look into the system to find such vulnerabilities.
I mean a win is a win, but this isn't as big as one would hope.
I agree that its unfortunate, but being able to inspect the software in your car is nearly as good as being able to inspect other's or have other's inspect yours if you have the same make and year.
Also it throws hassles at researchers, some cars have a lot of different combinations of things that might change the ECU software from engine choices to different model lines (Sport models often have different tunings) to even the type of gearbox (Manuals have different tuning than automatics which are different than CVTs, and advanced CVTs actually communicate with the ECU in complex ways that are only activated on the higher trims). No one is going to actually own 8 different Honda Accords just to legally work on all the firmwares. While I have no doubt that a lot of shortcutting will occur (i.e. people will dump the firmware and post it, and if and only if an issue is found will researchers bother to become nominal "owner" of a particular model) it adds a hassle, and a tinge of illegality which is completely unwarranted.
What about selling/renting devices that the owner connects in some obvious way and pushes a button?
Buy/rent a device to mod your own vehicle.
Openly flout emissions standards.
Popular among a subset of diesel pickup truck owners.
The solution is for people to vote with their buys.
I think this is the real story for many HN readers.
For example if the company is out of business, or they announced they'll close it permanently, it got effectively abandoned and there's been a very long time without any official statement on if/when they'll bring it back up, etc...
Of course the ECU needs adjustments to the fuelling tables (you need to run rich under boost to prevent detonation), spark timing tables, as well as a patch to the OS to allow the use of a different manifold pressure sensor (default OS doesn't recognise press above 100kpa).
I guess this was illegal.
I have heard rumblings from the professional engine tuners that the OEMs are already starting to lock down ECUs. Not only via DRM, but by having enough checks in the code that modifying parameters to up performance results in error codes and limp home mode. They expect to be having to go to after market ECUs soon.
Some of them would have cost more than my whole project:
Fortunately there are more DIY friendly set ups:
But it seems a waste to have to throw away a perfectly good ECU because the OEM (or gov) decided to lock it down.
Second, museums and archives are now permitted to circumvent copy protection in the pursuit of preservation. This means that huge stores of old games that are otherwise unavailable are now legally preservable by institutions like Stanford, The Museum of Art and Digital Entertainment, and Archive.org. Of note is the fact that the Atari ST catalog of software was preserved on pirate disks, and we've yet to find any other way to save some of those pieces of software, aside from just preserving the pirate disks. This does not mean these titles can be redistributed, only that they can be modified for the sake of preservation.
Additionally, this means museums can preserve devices that circumvent copy protection, such as floppy-to-SNES devices, which we have a few of at the MADE. Modded XBoxes can now also be preserved in an institution.
The bits that help museums means a great deal for preservation of digital assets as a whole. This was a lot of work to get done, so a huge thanks goes out to the EFF, Stanford, MIT, Harvard and Archive.org for all their hard work to get this done!
> and considered fair use
The 1201 exemption process doesn't adjudicate whether things are fair use in a way that's binding on courts, although the Copyright Office does believe that it has to express some opinion about that the uses it approves are noninfringing. But a court doesn't have to agree with that substantive question: if someone sued you for running the server they could argue that it's not a fair use, and the court that they sue you in isn't bound to agree that the Copyright Office was right to view it as noninfringing (or that this is true in the particular circumstances).
But once the copyright expires on the disks, they may then be redistributed?
It doesn't not however give people the license to sell those games commercially doesn't matter if they are "abandonware" or not.
That sounds to me like it would allow you to patch a game you already owned, but not to copy and sell that game. How does it help GOG?
For GOG to sell a game at all already requires that they explicitly cut a deal with the game owner. Fixing the game to run on a modern computer is a trivial part of that deal (and something they already do with their whole inventory).
So if they got permission to sell a version that can run on Windows, then they could later on patch it to make it run on Linux and other systems as well.
Not enough coffee this morning.
An interesting read on this: https://web.archive.org/web/20120220014712/http://www.macfer...
> There is no official term limit for the Librarian of Congress, but in the 20th century a precedent was established that Librarians of Congress are appointed for life.
> There is very little legislation for the Librarian of Congress or rules regarding who should be selected for the position. In 1989, Representative Major R Owens (D–NY) proposed a bill in Congress that would set stricter requirements for who may be appointed. (...) This bill did not pass.
> James H. Billington has served as Librarian of Congress since 1987, and announced plans to retire from that post in 2015.
This sounds to me as if the position hadn't really been designed for the amount of power that it has been given now by the DMCA. With a vacancy apparently right ahead, wouldn't that make it the next prime target for lobby efforts or corruption?
The links in my comment above were just to point out related links of interest, not at all to suggest that you shouldn't have posted this one.
Or it allows criminals to hide behind the DRM and laws to prevent a 3rd party from discovering their crimes (ala VW).
You're going to have to explain what you mean by that, is there some story of DirecTV successfully preventing people from analyzing firmware?
The software of the car is a component of the car just like any other, and while I can certainly mechanically disable the brakes on my car, it won't be safe for road use if I do (It would never pass an inspection). Since no one could be expected to debug/inspect my software modifications for errors, one would have to assume that any car whose software doesn't match the official one, may be unsafe for road use, and thus can't be allowed on the road?
Also: isn't firmware of this kind pretty hard to read without having access to encryption keys? The petition just wants it to be legal not for the manufacturers to be forced to make it easy?
I think the question has a point: Modified ECUs are different from modified brakes, because the modifications could likely not be found in an inspection - in fact, according to the exemption, it would be illegal for inspectors to check the ECU. So I wonder how that problem is handled.
At an interval check, the inspector does the usual sampling tests (brake effect, emissions, looks for rusty brake lines etc), and then validates that all critical computers (ECU's and other systems such as computers related to brakes etc) run software that match the signature of the manufacturer, and that it is the latest version of the sowftare. After a recall such as the VW case, the inspector could fail cars that haven't upgraded to the latest version (which would be required since the original one is known to be cheating on emissions).
This is a bit harsh compared to other modifications: an owner can put on a set of extra lights or cool wheels without necessarily failing an inspection, whereas even changing a single bit of the software would immediately fail it in this case.
I can't see any way around this though, apart from separating programs into critical (brakes, ECU) /non-critical (Media, nav,...) software, where only the critical software would be checked.
The simple ocular/mechanical inspection that is used in most places catch obvious problems like rusty brake pipes or bad brake effect. They don't test software issues like whether the stability system is disabled in fifth gear over 50mph due to a buffer overflow.
So while there are similarities between me trying to fix my brakes and me trying to hack the software (Make a change to a car component, if it passes the yearly safety tests it's OK) the software is much harder, or impossible, to test by "external" black box testing that needs to be completed in say 30 minutes by a non software expert.
My cars are old (1998) Nissan Skylines, who's ECUs are pretty basic, asides from killing the engine there's not much you can do to cause more issue than a mechanical modification like adding a larger turbo, or maintenance neglect. The ABS and traction control are handled by physically separate ECUs, though I imagine things are more integrated in the main drive train ECU in modern cars.
While I haven't modified the existing or written my own firmware to load on the ECU that mostly due to lack of time, one of them came from Japan with a Piggy Back ECU installed which intercepts the inputs / outputs to override the mapping of the OEM ECU to tune for other mechanical modifications. An alternative is to buy an aftermarket ECU or build a custom one, those tend to have less integrated safety features (stability control, etc.) than the OEM ones and integrate less well with the car's other systems, I'd expect them to cause more issues overall than relatively simple modifications of the OEM firmware.
I'm sure there are extremes where people may cause problems, but this kind of thing has been happening since cars have had computers so I doubt there's any great calamity around the corner.
Still it would be nice if there were inexpensive ways to check emissions for your self while tinkering.
However, I think fuel maps vs. catalyst removal are largely similar, it'll either be picked up on the next inspection or VOSA can do spot checks if they think something is up. I don't think DRM / technical measures for locking the ECU are appropriate much like I wouldn't be happy if the catalyst and exhaust system were installed such that only the manufacturer could replace them.
Perhaps one would only use a performance map when using the car on a race track, it'd be a shame to replace all the electronics just for that.
I'm also not a fan of things like geo-fenced speed limiters, and replacement components that have to be coded to the car by the dealer.
If cell phone service were free that would be one thing, but for these companies to be "double dipping" like this is pretty disgusting.
You're not seeing what is going on behind the scenes... they are all in cahoots the money is just a bonus.
You're not seeing what's going down behind the scenes - the spying is for us.
On the NSA/spying...
The (mass surveillance) by the NSA and abuse by law enforcement is just more part and parcel of state suppression of dissent against corporate interests. They're worried that the more people are going to wake up and corporate centers like the US and canada may be among those who also awaken. See this vid with Zbigniew Brzezinski, former United States National Security Advisor.
Brezinski at a press conference
> We are pleased that analysts will now be able to examine the software in the cars we drive without facing legal threats from car manufacturers, and that the Librarian has acted to promote competition in the vehicle aftermarket and protect the long tradition of vehicle owners tinkering with their cars and tractors.
now I am trying to mod an old key fob to work with the new one and have no idea how. it would be nice to encourage this sort of thing so there is more info out there. i am not even sure if it is possible to use an mk4 or mk5 key with my mk6 style one. why? no info.
I found a youtube video with the taredown which only exists because a modder sacrificed his $300 key to figure out how to do it properly.
i wish there was more info on how the software worked both for security and modification.
Will the LOC still be able to grant these? If not, the year-long delay may be just long enough that there is actually never an open window.
Surely it cannot be the automaker, they did not intend for that. Insurance companies are going to fight it, maintaining that unauthorized changes were made which would release their liability.
Inspecting auto software for problems is great, allowing hobbyists to tinker with their software seems problematic.
There really is no cause for concern; things that used to be purely mechanical are now electric. Any modifications made mechanically before could be equally disastrous.
Yes, software modifications are easier to hide, but that it is a price worth paying for the greater general freedom of everyone.
Not if you hash the software and find its been adjusted. In that sense it is easier to detect.
The hobbyist. Why would anyone else be liable for something a person did that then failed and caused harm?
> Insurance companies are going to fight it, maintaining that unauthorized changes were made which would release their liability.
The insurance company covers the car so you'd have to consult what their terms are in regards to modifications as plenty of people modify their cars today just not the software. I can't imagine a software change would be radically different to a hardware change in the insurance's eyes unless it's something incredible like an autopilot.
The hobbyist isn't the one with money. The manufacturer will be sued, and they usually settle because there is probably something they could have done that would have made the failure less likely, injury trials are bad press, and jury sympathy is always on the injured little guy's side.
This is how it plays out with physical products, I don't see why it would be any different with code.