#301 Posted by ninja_nyc (3 posts) -

Many security experts and media reports claim Windows contains a National Security Agency key. You can find these reports by searching for "NSA key Windows". I'm not a terrorist, pirate or any other kind of criminal. I just don't want Microsoft or the government to have an internet connected camera and microphone in my bedroom. Software settings are not a reliable way to disable the camera and microphone because all software has bugs and can be hacked. I'm very happy Microsoft decided to get rid of the requirement for an internet check-in every 24 hours. What still concerns me is that Microsoft is apparently clueless enough to have ever thought this was a good idea.

#302 Posted by Pearson (3 posts) -

@ei8htbit Very eloquently put, I couldn't of said it better myself and one of the more sensible comment's to this story. Like you, I'm fortunate enough to be able to own both consoles and will be able to enjoy what both companies have to offer. No matter how much MS dropped the ball by not coming out and directly saying what the benefits are to always being connected, we still need them around. If they and Nintendo were to get out of the video games space and Sony were still standing, we the consumer would lose.

Without MS and Ninty around, Sony needn't innovate and move gaming forward, set an ridiculously high price for the Playstation and the Publisher's and Dev's following suit by raising their prices because there are no checks and balances in place or competition from companies such as MS and Ninty. I don't think (I could be wrong) that Valve could make Steam a viable competitor to the Playstation brand because they'd have to keep prices high on their service as well. Whether you like or dislike MS or Ninty, we the consumer still need them around.

#303 Posted by DG991 (1344 posts) -

comments are stupid

#304 Posted by Darji (5294 posts) -

@pearson said:

@ei8htbit Very eloquently put, I couldn't of said it better myself and one of the more sensible comment's to this story. Like you, I'm fortunate enough to be able to own both consoles and will be able to enjoy what both companies have to offer. No matter how much MS dropped the ball by not coming out and directly saying what the benefits are to always being connected, we still need them around. If they and Nintendo were to get out of the video games space and Sony were still standing, we the consumer would lose.

Without MS and Ninty around, Sony needn't innovate and move gaming forward, set an ridiculously high price for the Playstation and the Publisher's and Dev's following suit by raising their prices because there are no checks and balances in place or competition from companies such as MS and Ninty. I don't think (I could be wrong) that Valve could make Steam a viable competitor to the Playstation brand because they'd have to keep prices high on their service as well. Whether you like or dislike MS or Ninty, we the consumer still need them around.

Nintendo is not even competing with the other 2 anymore and I doubt it would be worse or they would just try to innovate and make gaming better. Because they are still depending on customers and video games are nothing you really need for living and there is still the PC as well. Having MS out of the picture would not change anything. Except that maybe developers try to compete with the quality of games instead of using shitting control gimmicks to separate each other.

#305 Posted by StefanTheMongol (51 posts) -

Too little, too late. The damage was done. The system is still $100 more and comes with a camera only toddlers will enjoy.

#306 Edited by dionysis (51 posts) -

Many security experts and media reports claim Windows contains a National Security Agency key. You can find these reports by searching for "NSA key Windows".

Did you read any of these claims? I just read a handful of them and I didn't see anything beyond tinfoil hat theories built around the idea that "Clipper" was somehow pushed into the Microsoft Crypto API.

"Clipper" was a heinous idea, but it was the NSA's heinous idea that impacted all manufacturers that did anything involving crypto from cell phones to operating systems. "Clipper" was rejected en masse and Microsoft was one of the big opponents to the Key-Escrow approach that the NSA was proposing with "Clipper".

The NSAKEY is a replaceable public key in the CAPI key store. All that it would do is indicate that an executable signed with the NSAKEY private key was indeed signed by that key and run it as a valid signed executable. According to the Wikipedia article, no Microsoft security component has ever shipped being signed with that key. The Wiki also proposed that the second key is likely a protection against accidental loss of the primary private key that would support "secret sharing" to protect against accidental loss of the primary private key. This is apparently a best practice approach to primary key protection that was potentially discovered in an NSA review of the CAPI API (according to the Wiki). Even the most tinfoil hat conspiracy would suggest the NSAKEY would be given to the NSA which could allow them to inject a signed DLL into a specific system (and even this is a tenous assertion). It would be no basis for broad based SIGINT or automatically scanning data from your system. The fact that the key can simply be replaced by an end user makes it a completely ineffectual backdoor if it ever was one to begin with (which is an already incredibly thin supposition).

Software settings are not a reliable way to disable the camera and microphone because all software has bugs and can be hacked.

Most cameras have a hardware wired "recording" indication that will light an LED or activate in someway whenever the device is capturing. As long as this is hard wired on the Kinect then no software "hack" or "bug" will allow it to capture data without you being aware of it. This is definitely something I hope they have built into the Kinect and would be a good question for a journalist to ask.

@ninja_nyc said:

I'm very happy Microsoft decided to get rid of the requirement for an internet check-in every 24 hours. What still concerns me is that Microsoft is apparently clueless enough to have ever thought this was a good idea.

Microsoft isn't new to DRM and even though their approach was deeply flawed, it wasn't completely clueless. Periodic check-ins to renew digital content are pretty standard for DRM. I think Steam needs a check-in every 30 days or so which is also what Zune used. 24hrs is far to frequent for check-in, but I'm guessing the thinking there is that because so many games can be finished in 8-12 hours, 30 days wouldn't be acceptable protection to content owners. The biggest oversight in the whole thing is just not having a physical key (disc) fallback from digital rights expiration.

If the entire rest of the program they had was left in tact with the single assertion that "the disc will always play" then their whole fiasco could have been avoided. They would cover all existing use cases and then be able to message what new purely digital use cases would be made available when you have your console online. That would have flipped the entire message from "here's what we aren't allowing you to do" to "here's the new stuff we are enabling with our new ecosystem" and underscoring the potential value in digital sharing in their "family plan" and those related ideas. The whole pattern I'm seeing from Microsoft lately is good core engineering and fundamental features being absolutely ruined by poor management and some delusional product design.

#307 Posted by AlisterCat (5484 posts) -

I really, REALLY hate this PR bullshit. I'm so glad I'm not you, Patrick. Having to hear this stuff come back to questions you asked. It's like they can't even hear what you asked.

#308 Posted by Mycroft_Ampersand (75 posts) -

@dionysis said:

Microsoft isn't new to DRM and even though their approach was deeply flawed, it wasn't completely clueless. Periodic check-ins to renew digital content are pretty standard for DRM. I think Steam needs a check-in every 30 days or so which is also what Zune used. 24hrs is far to frequent for check-in, but I'm guessing the thinking there is that because so many games can be finished in 8-12 hours, 30 days wouldn't be acceptable protection to content owners. The biggest oversight in the whole thing is just not having a physical key (disc) fallback from digital rights expiration.

If the entire rest of the program they had was left in tact with the single assertion that "the disc will always play" then their whole fiasco could have been avoided. They would cover all existing use cases and then be able to message what new purely digital use cases would be made available when you have your console online. That would have flipped the entire message from "here's what we aren't allowing you to do" to "here's the new stuff we are enabling with our new ecosystem" and underscoring the potential value in digital sharing in their "family plan" and those related ideas. The whole pattern I'm seeing from Microsoft lately is good core engineering and fundamental features being absolutely ruined by poor management and some delusional product design.

Well said. Microsoft seemed to be taking cues from both itunes and Steam when designing the digital features of the XBox One but didn't seem to understand why those products were successful in the first place. I think that, had Microsoft allowed disc use as in this generation but focused on improving xboxlive and their digital marketplace, consumers would naturally have started drifting towards digital purchases. The better, easier (and sometimes, cheaper) that Microsoft's digital market is, the more people will convert from using physical retailers. Presuming that Microsoft could maintain this standard (as Steam has), they would eventually reach a point where it would be economically feasible to simply cut retailers out. As the transfer would be generated by consumers, all the people currently screaming at Microsoft would actually be praising them at that point.

I am assuming that this is the direction that Sony desires to move towards as well (fully in place as the gatekeepers of every piece of content on their devices, of course all the console manufacturers want that to occur) but they seem to have a much more realistic view of the current circumstances. If Apple has not been able to use itunes (and their ipods and iphones) to push music to an all digital landscape why did Microsoft think that they could do so with their console at this time? Especially when it would take a much greater change in the gaming market and infrastructure?

On a separate note, anyone complaining that Microsoft's policy changes have affected the quality of games that they can offer since they cannot guarantee that people are online and therefore cannot use the cloud to improve their games, needs to take another look at the initial announcement of those abilities by Microsoft. You could always turn your XBox One offline (you simply had to go back online within 24 hours) which means that they could never guarantee that people would be online to make use of that resource (assuming that it would work in the way that people are claiming anyway) and would therefore only be used in all likelihood by games which are always online anyway, like Titanfall. So, nothing has changed in that respect, except that those who want to use their system offline no longer have to check back in if they do not want to.

#309 Edited by Darson (448 posts) -

Frankly, Frank.

#310 Edited by bruhaha (2 posts) -
#311 Posted by The_Laughing_Man (13629 posts) -

Rumors are starting that MS will announce self publishing for indies as BUILD. If true it means This month has been filled with crazy video game twists. Just like a M. Night Shamaladingong movie.

#312 Edited by EXTomar (4505 posts) -

Which is interesting but way to late. If XBox One is targeting for Nov 2013 then indie deves needed to see the tools and build system months ago instead this week.

The more this goes on, the more this feels like this is entire project was poorly managed and planned and executed.

Online
#313 Posted by The_Laughing_Man (13629 posts) -

@extomar said:

Which is interesting but way to late. If XBox One is targeting for Nov 2013 then indie deves needed to see the tools and build system months ago instead this week.

The more this goes on, the more this feels like this is entire project was poorly managed and planned and executed.

What I would love to see is both Sony and MS get into the Kickstarter stuff. I would love to see some of the games on there that get funded come to the PSN and XBL.

#314 Edited by EXTomar (4505 posts) -

Adding some sort of "KickStarter App" to the Game section of both of their dashboard would be intriguing. Seeing the "PS4" or "XBox One" sections of KickStarter along with being able to donate in platform (through the attached CC) could be an intriguing idea and a big way to promote indie development.

Online
#316 Posted by GTFan712 (156 posts) -

Anyone notice the abundant use of the word "frankly" in his responses?

#318 Posted by Bonobobo (2 posts) -

"We want to give them access to a ton of capabilities in the cloud..."
That should be "We rent them cloud stuff, as soon as they want to stop paying us that function is non existing."
And he keeps on saying that they THINK the cloud could be really cool for the experience. Not the game but the experience. But what it is they say not except for the drivatar thing that is just a ghost like you have in every online race game. Wouldn't this be the graphical power of 10 Xbox One's in the cloud? Probably not. It's amazing how MS keeps continuing not being able to explain their entertainment device.

#319 Posted by JillSammich (104 posts) -

I'm Frank Frankly, and this is the XBox One.