David Icke knows the score

Today in the bar I was bitching to a friend about how HDMI is first a restraint and only second a means of moving bits from point A to B, because it was built with DRM from the ground up and therefore its designers notion of fail safe is that if there is any glitch at all, deliver black rather than accidentally delivering something unpermitted, it being a technology beholden to the media cartels, and if someone was trying to design something that does what HDMI actually succeeds at that thing would be called "ethernet", oh, wait, that actually exists.

You know... bar talk...

And this fellow comes in and tells me that he knows exactly what I mean, because the secret aliens who rule the world want to keep us helpless in bondage and they use these technologies to keep us distracted.

"Oh yeah?", I said. I was intrigued by this alien business.

And he went on at some length, and I can't say I really disagreed with any of it, except that where he said "aliens" the words I would have used would have been "corporations" or "Capitalism". Terminology, right? "You shouldn't worry about TVs", he said, "just put in a pool table and teach the drunks geometry." I mean, who can argue with that? "I very much enjoy geometry, but music videos are pretty cool too," I said.

I think They Live was a brilliant movie, but I suspect that where this fellow and I differ is that I don't think it was a documentary... no wait, I absolutely do think it was a documentary, I just think it was a metaphor.

Or maybe I'm just woozy, because for decades they have been turning our atmosphere into their atmosphere.

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10 Responses:

  1. Doc says:

    You see them on the street. You watch them on TV. You might even vote for one this fall. You think they're people just like you. You're wrong. Dead wrong.

  2. The worst part about our grim meathook future is having to admit how many conspiracy theorists were right, even if they had the details totally wrong.

    • 97813798231 says:

      I find you can just say factual things that powerful people are doing a little bit fast and it sounds super crazy.

      Anti-organic food articles are written by leaders of fake think tanks that are actually funded by the charitable foundations of billionaires who have an interest in conventional agriculture.

      They put fake cell phone towers that log your phones location in planes and fly them over US cities so that they can record your location and look it up at any time in the future.

  3. pinoles says:

    Man, I so wish I had been there...

    Thank you for this.

  4. I have come here to chew bubble gum and transfer video streams. And I'm all out of bubble gum.

  5. Bob Loblaw says:

    I sometimes miss ~/gruntle/, and this would have been a great ~/gruntle/.


  6. Nick Lamb says:

    All the digital video transports (DVI, HDMI, DisplayPort etc.) are doing essentially the same thing and it's really different from what Ethernet does.

    In fact it all makes a lot more sense if you've used VGA and its predecessors. Because basically imagine if you remove the DAC from a VGA port, and connect instead directly to the display, that's what they're all doing. Three simultaneous serial links, one red, one green, one blue. Timed to deliver a row of pixels at a steady rate, then pause briefly for the electromagnet inside an imaginary cathode ray tube to reset, then send the next row of pixels.

    The relatively long distance between your display and the graphics chipset means they need a fancy modern serial encoding, and since nobody actually owns a cathode ray tube any more the brief pauses have been whittled down considerably though they still exist - but the big picture is still the same as when we were using analogue cables. Efforts to do anything smarter (e.g. why send the exact same pixels every frame when the picture isn't changing? You could just switch off the transmitter for a while and save power) have largely come to nothing unlike with Ethernet.

    HDCP (the crypto you're bothered by) was broken years ago. Almost nobody cares, if you're a fancy pirate you knock off compressed video data, or work from uncompressed masters, you're not trying to frame scrape somebody's DVD player. If you're a game streamer you either use built-in tools or you can pick up totally legit equipment to capture, compress and stream your video. Sony's PS4 doesn't even bother switching HDCP on for games, because it would just annoy people, not stop anybody doing anything naughty - and that's from Sony.

    • ajax says:

      No, DisplayPort is much more like Ethernet than it is like DVI. You pick one of a small number of fixed clocks, stream packets at that rate down one two or four differential-signal pairs, and when you run out of pixel data for the frame you stuff the link with null symbols. If the source and sink both support it, you can send only the updated regions, or turn off the link when the image isn't changing and let the panel refresh itself.

      The crypto bit is still there, but it's still optional, and my OS never bothers to turn it on because as jwz notes all it can possibly do is make the link less reliable.

      • gryazi says:

        As if it matters, I like to think of DisplayPort as vaguely descended from the same "hey, negotiating bonded serial links is cheap enough now!" school of thought that showed up first in HyperTransport and PCI-E and various more-and-less obscure HPC interconnects I know little about (as well as in SATA/SAS and Firewire and all that). But I'd love to know if the spec had a particular relation to something specific and preexisting.