"if you call that hacking, then we embrace that.", or: please have a cake.

From nyt: Some hackers say Sony wants to deter customers from modifying the PlayStation3. Is that true? No, there’s a real misnomer there, we embrace independent game development; if you call that hacking, then we embrace that. We give people tools that let them create new experiences. What I don’t think we are in support of is someone trying to hack our device to pirate software and possibly collapse the platform.


Recently mist came up with an update of his 2005 slide summarizing the effects of a number of hacks that started benign and ended up, well, not so benign. While I this kind of meta-discussions are not really my métier, an interesting discussion was started in the comments. I don’t want to re-start this discussion. The major points have been made, from both sides. One of my points, though, that is an important foundation for this discussion, is my belief that most hacks, regardless of being benign or not, have not been made by a commercial party.

Captcha fun...

Ok, this post is a bit lame. First, I know that captchas are random, and there are a lot of funny words in a 26^6-space. Second, it only works in German, if you want translate it: “po” means “butt”. So yes, it’s a lame sexual reference. Still interested? Fine, then read on.

Part 2: Dumping the Media Board

The Media Board contains an FPGA which interfaces to the DI bus, i.e. replaces the DVD-ROM. However, A quick test shows that the original DVD commands don’t work. Here the modchip’ed triforce comes handy again: The qoob bios leaves the original bootrom (i.e. the triforce IPL) at 0x81300000. I could then upload my own test tool via network, patch the IPL (for example I’ve redirected OSReport to the screen and to the USBGecko), and let it run.


Sorry, I just had to put this online… (In case you didn’t get it: KabelBW is a big cable provider in germany. They offer an “IPTV” service, where you can watch some TV channels over the internet, from everywhere. Now one channel, ”BW-family”, doesn’t seem to work, and reveals how they are transcoding their content for the Web - essentially using a specific, unnamed set-top-box tied up to an analog-to-flc encoder, which displays this ugly message box when a channel was not found… I bet it’s even my faul that the message box title still says “Switch” and not something more user friendly.