Interview with Gary Edwards (ODF) and the madness of software patents

Čt 13 října 2005

If there is one line which could make anybody clearly understand madness of the current U.S. practice of patenting everything, then it is this one from the interview with Gary Edwards (one of co-authors of Open Document Format):

Microsoft’s new strategy in this second war is patents. They’re filing patents on how you use XML. They can’t own XML, so they are filing patents on ideas of how you implement XML. They're current goal is to file at least 300 patents per day, and they claim that they want to double and triple that amount yearly.

When I was in the law school, our professors used examples of Thomas Alva Edison or Alexander Graham Bell (or their Czech equivalents) to explain why patents are useful for dissemination of groundbreaking inventions and stimulating development, but there is no way that Microsoft’s people would create 300 such groundbreaking inventions a day. And the only real software patent which IMHO would be worthy of patenting is in public domain. Well, somebody is great and somebody has to fake it via legal methods.

Category: computer Tagged: FLOSS patents