Linked by Thom Holwerda on Thu 28th Oct 2010 18:02 UTC, submitted by viator
Legal If you can't compete, litigate. This train of thought has been quite prevalent among major technology companies as of late, most notably by Apple and Microsoft, who both cannot compete with Android on merit, so they have to resort to patent lawsuits and FUD. Both Asustek and Acer have revealed that Microsoft plans to impose royalty fees upon the two Taiwanese hardware makers to prevent them from shipping Android and/or Chrome OS devices.
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RE[5]: Comment by rubberneck
by tomcat on Thu 28th Oct 2010 21:31 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: Comment by rubberneck"
tomcat
Member since:
2006-01-06

LOL@geek boy from the Netherlands lecturing others on the U.S. Constitution.

Reply Parent Score: -5

Thom_Holwerda Member since:
2005-06-29

Bite you tongue, son.

You might want to read up on the history of software patents in the US, and how the US Supreme Court was decidedly against them for much of the latter half of the 20th century. It wasn't until the '90s that patents on software became accepted, mostly due to a string of three rulings: the decisions In re Alappat in 1994 and In re Lowry in 1994 (which basically said that a new algorithm combined with a trivial hardware device was patentable), culminating in State Street Bank v. Signature Financial Group in 1998, which stated that a calculation which produced a "useful, concrete and tangible result" was patentable - hardware or no.

The final deathknell came from none other than Bill Clinton himself, who made the brilliant*cough* move of appointing a lobbyist from the software industry, Bruce Lehman, as commissioner of the USPTO in 1994. Before that, the USPTO refused to grant patents on software. After that - well, the guy was a lobbyist from the software industry. Do the math.

Please, don't act all arrogant because I'm not an American. I'm pretty well-versed in these matters, and me not being an American does not mean I don't understand how this stuff works.

Edited 2010-10-28 21:50 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 16

RE[7]: Comment by rubberneck
by tomcat on Sat 30th Oct 2010 02:04 in reply to "RE[6]: Comment by rubberneck"
tomcat Member since:
2006-01-06

Bite you tongue, son. You might want to read up on the history of software patents in the US, and how the US Supreme Court was decidedly against them for much of the latter half of the 20th century.


It's foolhardy to take the opinion of the Supreme Court at any given point in history as a defacto interpretation of the U.S. Constitution. The USSC often gets things wrong. Many of our citizens weren't considered "full persons" because of their ethnicity or sex for the greater part of our heritage.

The Court didn't understand that software -- even if it isn't manifested as a physical device -- is still machinery. They saw software primarily as an abstract concept -- or a series of steps or a process -- which was fundamentally wrong. In its purest sense, software IS machinery.

And there's nothing peculiar about software that would warrant excluding it from patent protection. The fact that you might blunder into my invention with the use of an editor and a compiler is no different than if you built a similar machine in your garage.

So, get off my lawn.

It wasn't until the '90s that patents on software became accepted, mostly due to a string of three rulings...


But that wasn't the first time that software patents were validated. Try Diamond v. Diehr in 1981. From that point on, the writing was on the wall.

Please, don't act all arrogant because I'm not an American.


Uh, I'm arrogant ... because I'm arrogant. Not because you're from the Netherlands.

I'm pretty well-versed in these matters, and me not being an American does not mean I don't understand how this stuff works.


Being well-versed doesn't mean your opinion is correct. If anything, people who argue against software patent protection are more luddites holding pitchforks than anything else.

Reply Parent Score: 1