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2006-09-13 Returning to Regular Blasting of So-Called Intellectual Property

I think all the SoftwarePatents crap coming our way means exactly one thing:

Should I ever start my own company, I would never monetize on the (potentially patent-infringing) product but on services.

Make the software open-source, release it, disown it, make it a public asset and thereby protect yourself from PatentTrolls.

Here’s some more depressing news from the wonderful world of patents.

RightToCreate writes about yet another patent troll:

Net2Phone, a Voice-Over-IP (VOIP) company that was largely unsuccessful in the marketplace has now turned to the tried-and-true strategy of suing its successful competitors with its overly-broad and extremely obvious patents. [1]

He quotes from Tim Lee over at the TechnologyLiberationFront, who uses a very nice image:

Some people seem to think that these kinds of bad software patents are anomalies--that there are good ones as well, and that we ought not to throw the baby out with the bath water. Yet I’ve seen news accounts of more than a dozen examples of bogus patent suits in recent months, but I have yet to see an example of a legitimate software patent. There’s an awful lot of bath water here, and I’m having trouble seeing the baby. [2]

I like the Technology Liberation Front subtitle: “The question is not whether machines think but whether men do.” :D

There more over at RightToCreate, such as “Reforming Software Patents” or “Owning the Idea of Tree Frog Venom” or “JPEG Patent Rejected”. Interesting reads, if you haven’t subscribed to the blog anyway. ;)

The JPEG thing is interesting:

It’s nice to see the Patent Office doing the right thing, but it’s too bad that more than $100 million dollars that Forgent has extorted from industry will never be returned to its rightful owners. Forgent gets to keep that money, regardless of how the PTO rules. For nearly 19 years, this patent has stood without challenge. Now, just over a year before it was to expire, the PTO declares that it is bogus. [3]

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