The man notorious for cracking the DVD code, and Apple’s FairPlay DRM, is looking to make a legitimate business out of his expertise.
Beginning Tuesday, the first product from his company DoubleTwist Ventures, will enter open beta. Called DoubleTwist, it’s a free desktop client that essentially allows any kind of music, photo, or video file to be shared between a long list of portable media players, and through Web-based social networks.
Instead of iTunes songs only being able to play on iTunes or videos taken with an Nokia N95 remaining locked on the phone, DoubleTwist software allows for dragging, dropping, and syncing of different media formats no matter the device.
The idea, according to DoubleTwist founder and CEO Monique Farantzos, is that media files should be more like e-mail. It shouldn’t matter what service you create the file in, or on what type of hardware, it all should work together seamlessly, she says.
Farantzos recruited DVD Jon, or Jon Lech Johansen, and the two have been working with about 10 others for the past eight months on the DoubleTwist software. Johansen says DoubleTwist allows him to bring the success he’s found to a wider audience.
“It’s one opportunity to write something for your Web site for use by a couple thousand geeks,” he said in an interview. But with DoubleTwist, the idea is to hide all the complexity of making easy transfers of files from the user so that even non-techie types will understand. “The goal is to make something your parents can use,” he said.