530 - Operation Tangled Web?
Thursday, August 2, 2007

Apparently law enforcement careers are as close as you can get to superhero living. That's the only explanation for why a raid targeting mass production of game console mod chips would be called "Operation Tangled Web." Oh, and there was a huge raid targeting mass production of game console mod chips, so hack your own consoles, you lazy bums.

Stories discussed Edit

Console mod-chippers busted in nationwide raids

House panel approves legal shield for bloggers

Rekindling the love: TiVo, DirecTV announce big update, more collaboration

Microsoft to test ad-supported version of Works

Amp'd Mobile shuts down; Prexar takes over

Microsoft pushes back Office 2008 for Mac until January

Proposed IPv6 cutover by 2011-01-01

Using face recognition instead of a PIN

Lollapalooza to be Webcast live

Web 2.0 bubble may be worst burst yet

The DRM scorecard

Voicemail Edit

  • Mike from New York - Could I get the Internet on my TV?
  • Tim the Rocket Scientist - So why do I care about a Mac press conference?
  • Seamus - I challenge Steve to a duel.

E-Mail Edit

Apple and CCIA Lawsuit

Hey Tom, Molly, Jason, and whoever else my be there,

I just wanted to comment on the Apple announcement on Tuesday. A friend of mine who is an Apple campus rep tells me that new iMacs are on the way and that they will be touch screen. I know this is another "some guy said," but he correctly informed me of the iPhone a couple weeks before the announcement. I tend to take his rumor-mongering a little more seriously than other sources.

Also, I was wondering if Slingbox is also represented by the Computer and Communications Industry Association. Wasn't MLB going after them a while back? I'm very much looking forward to using my recently acquired Slingbox to watch sports while in class this fall.

Erik in Tulsa

CCIA--not so much with the getting why

Hey Tom and Molly,

Tom, you asked the lawyers of Buzztown to look over the CCIA thing, and I must say that right now (without the actual complaint in hand, mind) I am as fuzzy as you as to what is going on here. As the lawyer at the end of the article points out, those warnings only prohibit "unauthorized" retransmissions etc., not all transmissions. Maybe if they said "No unauthorized, or unprotected, retransmissions...." it would solve the problem, but it seems to boil down to a picky bit of semantics in a legal notice that no one pays attention to anyway.

The best I can figure is that maybe Yahoo, Google, and Microsoft (all being semi-news outlets) would want to be able to squeeze some of their retransmission/reporting on the games through, without having to pay insane royalties to the sports leagues. Other than that, I'm not sure what precisely they hope to accomplish.


Frank J. M. Lattuca, Esq.

The definitive answer to the button war

This is the definitive answer to the button war. If Steve Jobs really hates buttons, then this must be his dream MP3 player--"the buttonless MP3 player" (button-haters around the world rejoice!). The owner's site touts form beyond function, and entices you to "touch its dimple" (sounds inappropriate, yet enticing). I didn't see a price, but obviously, no true button-hater should be without this. Why push something's buttons when you can molest its dimple?

Found at

From Yanko design


Dr. Karl

Protected iPod chargers

Hi MoTom!

I'm beginning to get used to TMV changing to MoTom, and would like to let you know that the show still rocks! And I will certainly be listening for a long time! Thanks for keeping us informed in a nice and funny way.

I'd like to add a little comment to the story you did on the iPod charging patent from Apple (episode #528, for your reference :-). I saw the images from the patent application, there are some flow charts in there. As I read them, the safety feature works like this: if you connect the iPod to a power source, the iPod will ask you for a code before it will charge from that source. The code is set beforehand. Like the kind of PIN code the iPod already features. So to tell the iPod that a certain power source is OK, you enter the code and it is added to a list of "trusted sources" just like when you connect to a Wi-Fi network from your laptop.

This way, it would not pose a problem when you take your iPod to a friend's house and want to charge it using their charger. Of course, I trust Apple to think of a system that would minimize irritation to the user, because that's what they're good at. Granted, they like to use proprietary stuff, but always in a way that works easily for the average user.

Hope that gives a bit more insight in this subject. Of course it's only a patent application, but I was amazed to see so many people on the Web thinking Apple would build something with such big usage hindrances.

Best regards, hope everyone is well including little Eli.

Michael the Web developer from Holland

TV frequency spectrum

Great podcast, Tom & Molly; I have been a fanboy for a very long time.

With all the talk about Google and the 700MHz radio spectrum, and analog TV frequencies being sold off, I thought you might like to have the real frequency ranges as defined and "owned" by the FCC:

TV channels 2-4 54-72MHz

TV channels 5-6 76-88MHz

FM radio 88-108MHz

TV channels 7-13 174-216MHz

The above is considered part of the VHF spectrum.

TV Channels 14-36 470-608MHz

TV Channels 38-69 614-806MHz

The two above are considered part of the UHF spectrum.

All digital TV broadcasting is done in the UHF spectrum on what are historically known as the UHF channels. For instance, when you key in 2.1 on the remote for digital channel 2, the TV is actually tuning in channel 56. The TV automatically remaps 2.1 to 56.

When analog TV goes away, the VHF spectrum will then become available for auction. If the FCC is going to auction frequencies in the 700MHz range, then they must be doing away with UHF channels 51 through 69.



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