Linked by Thom Holwerda on Wed 24th Oct 2007 20:14 UTC, submitted by Oliver
Legal In a blog post, Sun's Jonathan Schwartz has announced that Sun will counter-sue Net App, after negotiations proved to be fruitless. "So now it looks like we can't avoid responding to their litigation, as frustrated as I am by that (as I said, we have zero interest in suing them). I wanted to outline our response (even if it tips off the folks at Net App), and for everyone to know where we're headed. First, the basics. Sun indemnifies all its customers against IP claims like this. [...] Second, Sun protects the communities using our technologies under free software licenses. [...] Third, we file patents defensively."
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RE[2]: Software Patents
by ssa2204 on Thu 25th Oct 2007 06:49 UTC in reply to "RE: Software Patents"
ssa2204
Member since:
2006-04-22

Say Sun develops a method to transmit data over the electrical grid at amazing speeds. They do not patent the technology, then another company steps in, uses this technology and is the first out the door with some new device.

The reality that has existed for so many years is that companies enter into agreements and cross-patent deals. This has been going on since for decades. While many were whining and crying about the Microsoft-Novell deal, my first reaction was...so? In fact many technologies and IT related inventions you use on a daily basis exist from company A, because they licensed it from company B.

I do agree though that it is unique that software is able to have both copyright and patent, but then again software is unique in of itself when compared to books or steel girders. The one aspect that I took from the recent EU vs. Microsoft issue was that governments, societies, business, and the legal system are still working out how to understand and deal with technology.

Put another way, if I develop a new CODEC that allows for HD quality over the internet, not only do I want to copyright the CODEC, but a patent to the technology itself. Otherwise, any other company would simply reverse engineer, alter, and then produce in capabilities I do not have. But, with the code patented, any companies would have to come to an agreement. Yes I understand that maybe they may possibly have come up with something similar, but in the end, as melgross points out, this is how the business world works. Otherwise what is to stop other companies from just sitting around and waiting for me to publish so they can basically take my ideas? So while the company may lose out on being first to the market, they do have the option of always agreeing to terms.

Fact of the matter is, companies today are simply not going to invest the time and money without insuring that their investment is protected. While it is a nice fantasy that we could just do without all patents, copyrights, etc..fact is developers need to get paid, and companies simply do not pay salaries with no return.

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