Linked by Thom Holwerda on Wed 4th Jul 2012 23:08 UTC
Google Apparently, this is a major victory of the patent system. This, this right here, this is what the patent system has come to. This is the destructive effect it's having on this once beautiful industry. Thanks to trolls like Apple and Microsoft, basic, elemental functionality is being removed from devices people already own.
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1. Obtaining Patents cost a lot of money. They cost even more paying the lawyers to write the application than they cost to actually apply (and perhaps more than creating the invention itself.)

2. It is ridiculous to provide a twenty year protection in an industry where rate of obsolescence is few months (especially at a time when the industry is gradually moving to cloud based service model and where innovations can come up overnight.) Patents are a hindrance to this natural growth of the industry and may result in unreasonably prolonging the life of a product.

3. Software is different from other engineering and mechanical inventions. The latter are generally the kind that can revolutionize a given mechanical process. Software is generally evolutionary in nature. Its utility does not depend as much on the newness of a specific technique as it does on the unique combination of known algorithms and methods. Such methods of innovation should not be protected.

4. The claim that software is a process (therefore patentable) may not be accurate because software is fundamentally a series of machine understandable code which is processed by the processing power that comes with the hardware of the computer. The hardware is patentable, therefore what is the need for patenting software (which is but a series of binary code and is well covered by Copyright laws.)

Reply Score: 2

lilsim89 Member since:

Your arguments are interesting, and I completely agree with number two.

I must disagree, though, if you believe software shouldn't be patent protectable. CPUs are general purpose and do not provide usable functionality for the product user. That's like saying our hands truly provide functionality for humans. Therefore anything we create with are hands (or its associated process) needs no patent\copyright protection.

Secondly, software provides much greater revolutionary changes than hardware. Take for instance the invention of e-mail, word processing, video gaming, audio\picture\video editing, databases, financial accounting software, mobile computing, GRID computing, etc. These things are all completely different products created to run on the same simple computer. No?

On the other hand, there are relatively few hardware advancements that aren't a combination of existing hardware utilizing new and unique software.

Reply Parent Score: 1