Smart properties and ripping out the enforcement mechanism

I am wondering about the feasibility of smart properties. Just like the various ways by which the DRM implementations have been defeated, what stops people to do the same? We surely can't have a small micro controller attached to an electronic/mechanical device which allows/disallows access to the property, because all it needs is to rip it out and replace it with a modchip which does not allow such a thing.

Case in point: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Xbox_(console)_modchips

Is smart property a real feature of cryptoasset technology, or is it just "wish to have" features?

Comments

  • StephanTualStephanTual London, EnglandMember, Moderator Posts: 1,282 mod
    edited September 2014
    It didn't stop MS from selling millions of these consoles :)
    - Smart car == put it on a truck
    - Smart house == smash the window or kick the door in
    ...etc.

    Often, when people hear about smart property they try to find ways to circumvent it (that's good, hacking is fun), and then immediately try to find means to make it 100% fullproof (that's bad).

    It's bad because it's unnecessary - same goes to decentralized ID systems. Even your bank, after 10 years of you being a customer, having an excellent credit, and generally paying your bills will only score you at 99% certainty that you are who you say you are (you could be playing a super-long con). The 1% is the cost of doing business.

    It's also bad because it leads to impossibly customer-unfriendly schemes like DRM and other abominations like Ultraviolet.

    There are plenty of direct applications to smart property - see airlock.me, which if implemented as part of a decentralized Airbnb, would make user's lives a lot simpler and convenient.
  • PhonikGPhonikG Member Posts: 41 ✭✭

    We surely can't have a small micro controller attached to an electronic/mechanical device which allows/disallows access to the property, because all it needs is to rip it out and replace it with a modchip which does not allow such a thing.

    Even if we leave ethereum and smart contracts out of the equation, I am currently employed full time to support and maintain a system of "small micro controller attached to an electronic/mechanical device which allows/disallows access to the property" .

    In fact pretty much every University/Government building in North America and Europe deploys some sort of physical access control, such as prox or swipe cards, they just are not doing it with a smart contract/smart property as an integral component of the process. Thats what we are exploring at airlock.me

    Cheers,

    John
  • JasperJasper Eindhoven, the NetherlandsMember Posts: 514 ✭✭✭
    To be honest, i prefer just having a low crime rate, and locks that prevent detectionless theft.

    I mean, i dont like the idea of a "totalitarian" system of ownership ruled by a blockchain. Of course, this might mean that some DAOs need some access to more traditional law, or ownership of physical items the DAO uses are individuals/more traditional organizations. projectdouglas has some ideas about bridging between the old and new, not sure where to find it though..

    Of course you can rip it out and replace it.. But in practice? I think often it is easier said than done. I mean, go figure out how the electronics runs a car engine, and reimplement it.
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