[politics] [d@DCC] Law as code: Understanding the dilemma around a royalty-bearing Internet.
tOM at Abacurial.com
Fri Sep 3 13:18:02 EDT 2004
On 3 Sep 2004 at 12:00,
Russell McOrmond <discuss at digital-copyright.ca> wrote:
> This is the first draft of an idea that I am looking for help on. I am
> One of the most powerful tools I have found recently for explaining the
> larger legal, political and social implications of computer software is
> Lawrence Lessig's suggestion that "code is law"9. In this case I want to
> reverse this and suggest that law can also be understood in terms of code.
I think you will have to explain what "code" means to non-computer types.
Codes to them are either sets of laws ("The Code of Hammurabi") or
encrypted material. They have no conception what "source code" or "object
code" means, or where the term came from.
> For the purpose of this analogy, lets understand a license agreement as a
> form of "code", an application program, that is executed within an
> environment that includes hardware and the operating system. An operating
> system provides various features that an application can use. Most
> computer users know that different applications are compiled for different
> operating systems: that an application written for Microsoft Windows will
> not run on MacOS-X or Linux10.
Ditto for "application" and "compiled"
A short para like:
In the computer world, "applications", or computer programs, are written in
"source code" which consists for instructions like A=B; While (C=D)..., IF
A=X Then... These instructions are then usually then "compiled" by another
computer program into binary "machine code" or "object code" where the
actions are replaced by computer instructions like 0010101 and addresses of
data in the computer, which also look like 01000111. The object code then
runs on the actual machine. To accommodate different kinds of computer
hardware, provide common functions to computer programs, and manage several
programs runnig at the same time, a governing "Operating System" program
provides various facilities like printing or data storage to the
would be useful, Yeah, I know, oversimplified...
-- Quidquid latine dictum sit altum viditur --
,__@ tOM Trottier
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