Recently published patent applications often indicate what individuals or companies are thinking about and perhaps how DRM and related technologies may be evolving. Both of today's applications deal with aspects of watermarking. The first discloses techniques for remote control signaling using audio watermarks and is assigned to Verance. The second discloses techniques for file sharing control using digital watermarks, no assignee given.
20070247278, "Remote control signaling using audio watermarks," assigned to Verance.
A system for using a watermark embedded in an audio signal to remotely control a device. Various devices such as toys, computers, and appliances, equipped with an appropriate detector, detect the hidden signals, which can trigger an action, or change a state of the device. The watermarks can be used with a "time gate" device, where detection of the watermark opens a time interval within which a user is allowed to perform an action, such as pressing a button, typing in an answer, turning a key in a lock, etc.
20070250715, "File Sharing Control Using Digital Watermarks" no assignee given.
Systems, methods, and software products are disclosed that control file sharing of copyright protected electronic files over a communication network. A digital watermark in an electronic file includes information on content servers that are authorized to download to the electronic file to a requesting party. When the electronic file is downloaded from a particular content server to a requesting party, the information on the authorized content servers in the digital watermark is processed to determine if the downloading content server is authorized to be downloading the electronic file. If the downloading content server is authorized, then the downloading of the electronic file is allowed to continue. If the downloading content server is not authorized, then the electronic file is blocked from being downloaded to the requesting party.