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chromatic (983)

chromatic
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http://wgz.org/chromatic/

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Journal of chromatic (983)

Saturday May 25, 2002
01:52 PM

brencrypt.pl Redux

[ #5216 ]

As mentioned in my previous journal, brencrypt.pl produces an encrypted file wrapped in a Perl program to decrypt it. The secret key is, of course, the text of the Bill of Rights (from 'Amendment I' to 'to the people.'). Per pudge's suggestion, the current version strips out non alphabetical and space characters, using a canonical form. Whatever text version of the text ought to work correctly.

My loony theory, based on my status as a non-attorney, is that if I were to encrypt a copyrighted file with this program and place it on my website for download, I would not be able to distribute the text of the Bill of Rights. The encryption effectively forms an access control; that's easy to understand. The trick is in arguing that the *intent* of distributing the secret key is to allow other people to bypass the access control. Together with the program, they form a tool with exactly that purpose.

Find the program itself here. To decrypt files, you'll need Crypt::CipherSaber 0.61 from the CPAN. You'll also need the text of the Bill of Rights, but if my theory holds, I can't even tell you where to find it. :)

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  • If it's your copyrighted work, you can distribute the Bill of Rights or tell people how to find it. But you can't do it if it's my work. :)

    --
    J. David works really hard, has a passion for writing good software, and knows many of the world's best Perl programmers