[sword-devel] Sorry, I can't export sapphire.zip, but...

Kirt Christensen sword-devel@crosswire.org
Fri, 19 Nov 1999 08:02:20 -0500

I'm sorry, I have read just a few previous emails to this response below
and sense that I'm jumping in on something I don't fully understand.
I'm enjoying watching you all work and am  sorry that I haven't had much
opportunity to get involved due to a barrage of Windows CE work that I'm
in the midst of.  So there is a hint of hypocrisy in my thoughts

To the point, protecting against piracy to make this effort more
commercially attractive to retailers seems a strange conversation for
your mission as I understood it.  If, as some projections conservatively
speculate, there are in the next 30 years some 20 Billion people on this
planet, by what mechanisms will you retail?  Through what distribution
systems will you make these Words available to them?  With what money,
in such an economically controlled  environment where resources are so
key to survival, will they pay for these Bibles?  And who will be in
control of that system of world commerce?

You men are sacrificing your personal time and money in the foundations
of things that are a bit more important than appealing to commercial
retailers.  On the other hand, perhaps your conversation is really just
applicable to the confines our Sanitized, Westernized, Americanized,
Christian bubble......which is soon to pop. 
-----Original Message-----
From: Chris Little [mailto:chrislit@chiasma.org]
Sent: Thursday, November 18, 1999 7:53 PM
To: sword-devel@crosswire.org
Subject: Re: [sword-devel] Sorry, I can't export sapphire.zip, but...


I basically agree.  Etexts work basically the same as cryptography
when it comes to distribution.  The best you can possibly do is tell the
person who you give it to not to give it out to anyone else (or anyone
outside the US in the latter case) and hope that they follow your
instructions.  What they actually do is out of your control.

With SWORD, the keys can be given away by the original purchaser to his
1,000,000 closest friends.  With Logos, the key file can be given away
just the same manner.  One involves copying and pasting text, the other
copying and pasting a file.  The only way to improve the security model
would be individualized dynamic encryption through a web-based POS
interface.  You plug in your credit card number, it spits out a
encrypted module file and a unique key tailored for that file.  The
could still hand over the file and the key to a friend, but at least it
would be a larger task than before and would provide a means for
pirates if the keys were kept on record.

Being open source doesn't put us at any disadvantage compared to the
software retailers.  Yes, with our API, you can write a program to take
encrypted module and churn out an unencrypted module.  But every
Bible package for Windows that I know of (OLB, BW4, LLS, ...) has some
of export function that is easily exploited to achieve the same result.
Actually, OLB is the only package I know that allows for user-made
but it is still easy to export data from all of the packages and form
kind of ASCII, PDF, OLB, or SWORD formatted etext.

--Chris Little