DRM for woo: "light therapy" mask's LED only works 30 times

Blue light, especially, can be unpleasant for cells.

Red and near IR, conversely, seems to be used for tissue regeneration and low-power laser therapy.


A 600W one can pay for itself! :wink:

Well, I think “hardware as service” is actually more awful than software as service. There is an actual piece of junk being thrown out every month. It may be very little compared to the total volume of trash created, but it’s the thousands of little choices that add up to a huge waste.


On the other hand, one person’s waste is another person’s assortment of free parts.

Or an almost-functional device that usually needs only a minor repair.

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They are already mining the landfills, I guess.

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Well, it may not quite be BS. Phototherapy is an accepted means of treating a number of dermatological disorders. The company’s website references a number of clinical studies (e.g., http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/10809858) that shows that red and blue light is effective against acne in a double-blinded study. But doing it at home comes with a lot of problems (especially without clinical oversight). And the DRM business is simply ludicrous.

I’ve never gotten in trouble for stealing from the dump… OK, well, my family gets pretty annoyed if I come back with more junk than I left with, that’s true. But the state has never tried to keep me from salvaging wheelbarrows, pickle buckets, sheet foam and antique furniture from the landfill. It’s dirty work, the mud tends to be pretty deep at the drop-off point.

I’ve occasionally gotten in trouble for taking stuff out of recycling bins, although I always leave more than I take :angry: .


Whether intentionally or not, I’d say the company broke the device and you fixed it. You’re not renting the equipment, so I don’t see how they can claim that you’re contravening anything. @Jim_Kirk’s water heater tank was designed to rust in 16 years, +/- 6 months. If you designed an effective coating to stop that from happening, presumably you would void the warranty by not using approved equipment (not that warranties are actually worth anything in most cases*), but you’re not really doing anything other than maintenance. In this case, IANAL, but circumvention doesn’t seem to apply here:

(A) to “circumvent a technological measure” means to descramble a scrambled work, to decrypt an encrypted work, or otherwise to avoid, bypass, remove, deactivate, or impair a technological measure, without the authority of the copyright owner; and
(B) a technological measure “effectively controls access to a work” if the measure, in the ordinary course of its operation, requires the application of information, or a process or a treatment, with the authority of the copyright owner, to gain access to the work.

Planned self-destruction doesn’t seem to be a technological measure under this definition - the device works, then the equipment makes it not work after a certain number of uses. The ‘technological measure’ isn’t making the device work, it’s making it die. I wouldn’t want to argue that in court though.

*I voided the warranty on my smartphone’s charging unit by inserting a foreign object into it (the charger they provided).


Based on that wording, I would probably say you are right. I believe that this device fits (A) - you are definitely bypassing, avoiding or deactivating part of the device and “circumventing a technological measure.”

But on the other hand, (B) seems pretty problematic for them. There is no “application of information” or “process of treatment” to gain access, so the measure doesn’t effectively control access. The device simply shuts itself off after a while. DRM allows a company to control who has access and what people can do with a device. If it was “After the first month you can use this once a decade by mailing us to get a special one-use code” then, sure, that would be controlling access. But that definition doesn’t seem to allow for DRM that simply denies all access to everyone at all times.

I’d go rather for anodic protection here. Bolt on a sacrificial electrode, for example, or use an external power supply.

Yup, and whatever the law say, we have the intrinsic, gods-given right to repair, mod, and improve our gear. This right is independent on laws, it is dependent only on our equipment and knowledge.

You likely won’t have to; the probability they catch you is rather minuscule. Don’t ask for permission, and whip out the soldering iron.

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If Acme’s water heater rusts through in 16 years, I’m not necessarily going to replace it with a new Acme Water Heater. In fact, I might well look at brands other than Acme.

At least a water heater that rusts through doesn’t do this under any circumstances short of modifying it to do so:

Yeah seems questionable to me, especially considering the instructions on their site contradict themselves:

Why would your eyes need to be open to “achieve the benefit”?

Because the most popular hypothesis for the mechanism for SAD is that the non-vision light-sensitive cells in the retina (intrinsically Photosensitive retinal ganglion cells) that connect back to the suprachiasmatic nucleus (which controls circadian rhythm) aren’t being adequately stimulated during the winter in temperate (and more northern/southern) latitudes. The lack of direct sunlight causes the circadian rhythm to become dis-regulated, resulting in problems with sleep and wakefulness, stress, depression and fatigue.

So that’s why you need to actually have your eyes open for SAD light treatment to work. If your eyes are closed, then those ganglions aren’t getting stimulated. And we all know ganglion stimulation is super important. Especially in the middle of winter, when there’s really nothing better to do :wink:


This might be of interest.

A controlled trial of the Litebook light-emitting diode (LED) light therapy device for treatment of Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD)

Two things:

Conclusion The results of this ***pilot study*** support the hypothesis that light therapy with the Litebook is an effective treatment for SAD.
Emphasis mine, and
Of the 26 participants randomized, 23 completed the trial.

This doesn’t qualify as acceptable evidence for making a medical decision. The n is way too small. Also, they inappropriately used ANOVA in their analysis even though there were only two statistical groups. ANOVA is often used in clinical trials to massage favorable results out of inadequately powered studies.

ETA: Further reading through the study protocol appears to include some self-contradictions. The study claims to be double-blinded, but several paragraphs in, says that during the randomization process, the physicians handing out the Litebooks, and controls were unblinded. So, this isn’t really a double-blind test at all.

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