Linked by Thom Holwerda on Tue 9th Oct 2007 16:14 UTC, submitted by Rahul
Microsoft Microsoft chief executive Steve Ballmer has warned users of Red Hat Linux that they will have to pay Microsoft for its intellectual property. "People who use Red Hat, at least with respect to our intellectual property, in a sense have an obligation to compensate us," Ballmer said last week at a company event in London discussing online services in the UK.
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by wakeupneo on Wed 10th Oct 2007 06:17 UTC
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I don't think the USPTO have a clue about what a patent actually is or what qualifies as one. In Australia we have three criteria for patentability of a new invention - Utility, Novelty and Non-obviousness.

Utility means that the invention must be useful.
Novelty means that the invention is new and/or that the author is the first and original inventor.
Non-obviousness means that the invention must not be obvious to a person with ordinary skill in the invention field of applicability.

I doubt the majority of software patents approved in the US would ever see the light of day based on this criteria...and, thank the gods, never will where I live.

Reply Score: 1

by MamiyaOtaru on Wed 10th Oct 2007 08:37 in reply to "USPTO"
MamiyaOtaru Member since:

In Australia we have three criteria for patentability of a new invention - Utility, Novelty and Non-obviousness.

That's nice. Of course, the USPTO has the same criteria, which are described with nearly identical wording. Unfortunately wording doesn't save one from misuses made possible by an overworked bureaucracy rubberstamping stuff ;)

from USPTO:
The patent law specifies that the subject matter must be "useful." The term "useful" in this connection refers to the condition that the subject matter has a useful purpose and also includes operativeness, that is, a machine which will not operate to perform the intended purpose would not be called useful, and therefore would not be granted a patent.
In order for an invention to be patentable it must be new as defined in the patent law ... If the invention has been described in a printed publication anywhere in the world, or if it was known or used by others in this country before the date that the applicant made his/her invention, a patent cannot be obtained.
Even if the subject matter sought to be patented is not exactly shown by the prior art, and involves one or more differences over the most nearly similar thing already known, a patent may still be refused if the differences would be obvious. The subject matter sought to be patented must be sufficiently different from what has been used or described before that it may be said to be nonobvious to a person having ordinary skill in the area of technology related to the invention. For example, the substitution of one color for another, or changes in size, are ordinarily not patentable.

Edited 2007-10-10 08:42 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 2