Q: "In recent years, there's been a lot of people clamoring to reform and restrict intellectual-property rights. It started out with just a few people, but now there are a bunch of advocates saying, 'We've got to look at patents, we've got to look at copyrights.' What's driving this, and do you think intellectual-property laws need to be reformed?
A: "No, I'd say that of the world's economies, there's more that believe in intellectual property today than ever. There are fewer communists in the world today than there were. There are some new modern-day sort of communists who want to get rid of the incentive for musicians and moviemakers and software makers under various guises. They don't think that those incentives should exist.
That's throwing a bone over to the RIAA and MPAA folks who want to make the very notion of P2P illegal. Microsoft has an entirely different problem with Open Source, and I think I outlined the shape of that problem here. I guess Gates wants big allies for this fight, and the music/movie industry has lots of dollars to throw around.
There's a scary connect the dots thing here:
"Intel has a new line of chips with DRM built in. This appears to be the very first DRM-enabled chip to hit the streets. This microprocessor is unlike others available, because the user doesn't have complete control over the thing, and your computer can (theoretically) betray you. For a while now, there have been computers (IBM ThinkPad) that won't boot unless you give the password, but you could always rip out the hard drive and read it, right? With this chip, the keys and RAM are on the chip, and the flash is encrypted, so this really looks locked up tight.
That's Hollywood's wet dream right there, and it sounds like Gates is willing to sign on - in order to get allies in his fight against Open Source.