Linked by Thom Holwerda on Wed 6th Jul 2011 14:00 UTC
Microsoft Well, paint me red and call me a girl scout, I totally did not see this one coming at all. This is so utterly surprising it made my brain explode. Hold on to your panties, because this will rock your world. After pressuring several smaller Android vendors into submission (and yes, HTC is still relatively small compared to other players), Microsoft is now moving on to the big one: Redmond is demanding $15 for every Samsung Android device sold. Samsung's choices are simple: pay up, or face another epic lawsuit.
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unoengborg
Member since:
2005-07-06

Is a non commercial product (given away for free) vulnerable to patents? Can someone take me to court for serving homemade coca cola (or whatever) for free?


I'm not sure Coke is covered by any patents, my guess is that the ingredients and how to mix them is a trade secret. In that case I guess you would be able to do it, at least as long as you don't call it Coca Cola.

If there are patents involved, that would not be possible, patents is all about not being the first having the idea. In other words you could see it as some form of limited monopoly on thinking, or at least on letting your thought take some more or less physical form, and I really can't see how this will be good for inventors or society.

If it was good for society how come the very people that are supposed to be experts on patent law, i.e. the lawyers don't use it on their own work. Just imagine how much the first lawyer using some form of insanity defence, could have made if he had had a patent on it. If he refused to license it he could take over all court cases where that type of defence was needed. If we can patent medical procedures why not extend it to legal procedures.

My guess is, the reason they haven't tried is that they realize that the legal system would fall apart if this was possible, just like the software industry is starting to do today.

Reply Parent Score: 3

silix Member since:
2006-03-01

Is a non commercial product (given away for free) vulnerable to patents?
yes
it's not the price that makes something liable wrt patents, it's whether the product contains (parts of) inventions ("methods and apparatuses") whose patents have been (for the right or wrong) grsanted to someone else
If there are patents involved, that would not be possible, patents is all about not being the first having the idea. In other words you could see it as some form of limited monopoly on thinking, or at least on letting your thought take some more or less physical form, and I really can't see how this will be good for inventors or society.
not just an "idea"... patents are about (agan, sorry) "methods and apparatuses" devised to solve a specific problem in a specific application domain and based on mathematical or physical foundation
even in the case of a sw one, it needs a detailed functional description of the invention in order to apply for a patent..
If it was good for society how come the very people that are supposed to be experts on patent law, i.e. the lawyers don't use it on their own work.
because the patent law regards inventions, but is otherwise no different from many other law, which is conceived once, and then interpreted by those whose job is to find the most favourable interpretation for their clients, among plausible ones (it's not like there's an infinite amount of them, in addition to the one the regulator originally intended...)
My guess is, the reason they haven't tried is that they realize that the legal system would fall apart if this was possible, just like the software industry is starting to do today.
mine instead is, it would violate a fundamental principle - all applications of a certain law and all trials based on it, should be fair
if interpretations were patentable, court rulings couldnt be reused in subsequent affine trials on the same subject, and that would be no more

Reply Parent Score: 1

Lennie Member since:
2007-09-22

yes, yes, yes,...

but isn't it also true that you have to pay the patent holder from the money you make with selling the product you make ?

If you don't make any money from it, do you still have to pay ?

And what I really meant was: the user installs a free OS. So it wouldn't be the hardware vendor.

Edited 2011-07-07 03:59 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 3