Linked by Thom Holwerda on Tue 31st May 2011 22:20 UTC, submitted by john
Legal Well, I have to say this: Lodsys got some balls. After Apple threatening them with legal action, Lodsys has gone on the offensive, and has proceeded to sue third party iOS application developers. While Lodsys had first given developers 21 days to negotiate an agreement, due to Apple's legal threats, the company has now moved its litigation timing to an earlier date.
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RE[2]: For or against
by lindkvis on Wed 1st Jun 2011 12:17 UTC in reply to "RE: For or against"
Member since:

"Audio codecs are specialised compression algorithms. Those algorithms are applications of mathematical formulas. And mathematical formulas are not patentable, because they are formulations of nature's laws. "

You are confused. You definitely can make formulations of nature's laws using mathematics. This is why it is such a fantastic tool in the realm of physics, chemistry or biology. However, mathematics is in itself just a totally abstract language. As such it can be used to describe totally abstract concepts.

These abstract concept may well be incredibly useful, but they are as much of an "invention" as music, pictures, books etc.

If you can use mathematics/software to perform the task of a patentable physical machine. Then why should only the physical machine be patentable?

I'm very much a patent-sceptic (not anti-patent), and I think most of the black/white discussion on it is exceptionally uninformed.

Reply Parent Score: 1

RE[3]: For or against
by JAlexoid on Wed 1st Jun 2011 15:15 in reply to "RE[2]: For or against"
JAlexoid Member since:

It's not confusion at all. It's philosophy.
2+2=4 is as natural as 2+2=2.8... Though one is more abstract than the other. Numbers are the laws of nature. Even the most crazy abstract mathematical ideas came to be useful in the physical world. Two of the most abstract numbers, as a non mathematician, I can think of are the imaginary number sqrt(-1) and zero. Yet both are used in physics.

Software has copyright. Just like you said "but they are as much of an 'invention' as music, pictures, books etc.". I see patents as necessary for physical inventions, because physical inventions can be copied easily and don't have copyright. Essentially patents is a copyright on physical invention.
As for software patents level of abstraction, see my note on steam engines:

My standpoint is not of a person that is far off from these matters. I dealt with software patents quite a lot at my workplace. I always refused to write up applications myself, but I had to review patents of my peers.

Reply Parent Score: 2