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  Reply # 677976 28-Aug-2012 09:15 Send private message

blair003:


My posiiton is that I favour patents. But, the patent process is too complex, too detailed, and it makes it unwieldy.

There are probably too many, but thats more due to patents having a long lifespan. Smart devices are such that a patent needs not have a life of 20 years, more like 3 years or so. That rewards trhe innovator in terms of a 6 month head start on competitors and licensing for a 2  to 3 seasons after that. Make a not so long list of rules, simplify the process to lay a patent and to define it, that will make it much more black and white than what we have now.  


We will have to agree to disagree. I think that smart devices need patents just as much as anything if the patent deserve to be awarded in the first place. The problem is with things that should not be patentable in the first place been given patents.

When you can patent how a device looks or how a user interacts with a device or the fact that a search function searches local sources as well as remote sources, I don't think it's a realistic goal to reduce the number of patents by simplifying the process or further defining the patent to make it much more black and white.


So your main issue is what should be patented and what should not be? 

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Ultimate Geek


  Reply # 677977 28-Aug-2012 09:16 Send private message

blair003:


My posiiton is that I favour patents. But, the patent process is too complex, too detailed, and it makes it unwieldy.

There are probably too many, but thats more due to patents having a long lifespan. Smart devices are such that a patent needs not have a life of 20 years, more like 3 years or so. That rewards trhe innovator in terms of a 6 month head start on competitors and licensing for a 2  to 3 seasons after that. Make a not so long list of rules, simplify the process to lay a patent and to define it, that will make it much more black and white than what we have now.  


We will have to agree to disagree. I think that smart devices need patents just as much as anything if the patent deserve to be awarded in the first place. The problem is with things that should not be patentable in the first place been given patents.

When you can patent how a device looks or how a user interacts with a device or the fact that a search function searches local sources as well as remote sources, I don't think it's a realistic goal to reduce the number of patents by simplifying the process or further defining the patent to make it much more black and white.

the patent system works like "who thought of this idea first".. and it belongs them if they reached the patent office first..

I agree with both the ideas of patents having a lifespan and also what is able to get through to be patented in the first place..

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  Reply # 678003 28-Aug-2012 09:45 Send private message

 
So your main issue is what should be patented and what should not be? 


Definitely. I think if you fix that issue you fix most issues that have arisen in recent times.

The problem with a 3 year term is that for patents that deserve to be patented, it is not a long enough time. And for patents that don't deserve a patent, its too long to wait.

Things that deserve to be patented (in my view) may include say screen technology, or processor fabrication techniques, where people invent things and spend billions on building a facility to manufacture based on that technology. They deserve the government granted monopoly on that for a period of time.

You say you would limit smartphones patents to 3 years, but what do you mean? Smartphones are made from components that have (and deserve to have) valid patents. It is not fair to arbitrarily say those valid patents only last 3 years purely because the component patented forms part of a smartphone.

So then how do you define what parts of the smart device qualify for the reduced 3 year term? Then you ask yourself why is there a need to separate some patents for 'smart devices' from any other patentable technology in the world in the first place?

For me the answer is because we are allowing things to be patented that we should not.

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  Reply # 678038 28-Aug-2012 10:27 Send private message

tdgeek: So your main issue is what should be patented and what should not be?

This is certainly one of my main issues.

I don't believe that the majority of software is patentable at all. After all, software is nothing but a series of mathematical algorithms, and these are explicitly denied patent protection in the US. Why does software get special treatment?

There's also the question about whether the patents contain enough information to be valid. The idea behind a patent is that it contains instructions that someone can use to recreate the invention. Most software patents are extremely vague, so that they cover not just a single implementation but many possible implementations of the described functionality. This US Supreme Court has picked up on this fact, and has started finding that at least some software patents are invalid because they are too vague.

Patents were supposed to help promote progress by opening up inventions that may otherwise have been kept as trade secrets. Software patents grant a monopoly on not just an invention but an idea, giving companies a means to stifle competition. The result is a growing minefield, making it hard to write any piece of non-trivial software without accidentally infringing on some patent or another. This is not how the patent system was supposed to work.

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  Reply # 678052 28-Aug-2012 10:40 Send private message

Software is everything these days. In many cases it requires significant R&D budgets, innovation, design and creating new concepts.

Saying that all software should be exempt and have no protection seems like you are throwing the baby out with the bathwater.

Just to play devil's advocate.....a lack of patent protection can also hinder innovation and development. Why would you pour hundreds of millions of dollars into development if someone could come and decompile, recompile, repackage and resell your product and work? Companies might be disinclined to strive for the best if they will just see their work plagiarized and sold at a lower cost by a competitor who didn't have to invest the same financial resources into R&D.

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Ultimate Geek


  Reply # 678055 28-Aug-2012 10:45 Send private message

I dont think samsung did "decompile, recompile, repackage ".. it was a feature and they did it their way..

if u make a calculator and release it and then another company makes a calculator that does what your calculator does, it doesnt mean that they stole your code / algorithms, they just produced a product that does very similar to your product but in their own way..

Just like apple did with the pull down notification bar which was totally a feature of android and they did it their way with their code that does that.. I am pretty sure they didnt decompile android and recompile that one feature and add it to IOS

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  Reply # 678113 28-Aug-2012 12:21 Send private message

I'm not sure I would take the analogy as far as RMS, but I think this is a pretty good summary of the problems with software patents:

http://www.gnu.org/philosophy/software-literary-patents.html


The way to prevent software patents from bollixing software development is simple: don't authorize them. This ought to be easy, since most patent laws have provisions against software patents. They typically say that ?software per se? cannot be patented. But patent offices around the world are trying to twist the words and issuing patents on the ideas implemented in programs. Unless this is blocked, the result will be to put all software developers in danger.

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Ultimate Geek
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  Reply # 678132 28-Aug-2012 12:55 Send private message

spacedog: Software is everything these days. In many cases it requires significant R&D budgets, innovation, design and creating new concepts.

Saying that all software should be exempt and have no protection seems like you are throwing the baby out with the bathwater.

Just to play devil's advocate.....a lack of patent protection can also hinder innovation and development. Why would you pour hundreds of millions of dollars into development if someone could come and decompile, recompile, repackage and resell your product and work? Companies might be disinclined to strive for the best if they will just see their work plagiarized and sold at a lower cost by a competitor who didn't have to invest the same financial resources into R&D.

Software is already covered by copyright. Nobody is allowed to simply take your product, reverse engineer it and create an identical work-alike. If someone wants to make their software do what yours does, they have to figure it out themselves and write the code from scratch. The only thing that was "stolen" was the general idea, not the implementation of that idea.

The problem with throwing patents into the equation is that they tend to cover not just the implementation but the idea in general. If you think that protection on an idea is a good thing, imagine how it would apply to writing.

Let's consider a story outline. An orphan teen discovers that they have some unusual power. As the teen grows, wise elders teach the youth to harness that power, to use it for good. While this is happening, an evil force is trying to take control. Many try to stop this force, but fail. The youth is drawn into the fight and eventually has to fight the leader of the evil force. By using their wits, their special power and the power of love, the youth is eventually able to defeat the baddie and win freedom for all.

Does that story sound familiar? If not, it should do. Think Star Wars. Think Harry Potter. If someone would given rights to the story idea, not just a given version of that story, it's possible that these hits would never have been created.

That's my main concern with software patents. Unless something can be done to make them apply to a specific implementation, not just a general idea, they're far too powerful and far too easy to abuse. Once they apply to a specific implementation, they usually offer no more protection than copyright. So why bother?

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  Reply # 678137 28-Aug-2012 13:06 Send private message

nzgeek:
spacedog: Software is everything these days. In many cases it requires significant R&D budgets, innovation, design and creating new concepts.

Saying that all software should be exempt and have no protection seems like you are throwing the baby out with the bathwater.

Just to play devil's advocate.....a lack of patent protection can also hinder innovation and development. Why would you pour hundreds of millions of dollars into development if someone could come and decompile, recompile, repackage and resell your product and work? Companies might be disinclined to strive for the best if they will just see their work plagiarized and sold at a lower cost by a competitor who didn't have to invest the same financial resources into R&D.

Software is already covered by copyright. Nobody is allowed to simply take your product, reverse engineer it and create an identical work-alike. If someone wants to make their software do what yours does, they have to figure it out themselves and write the code from scratch. The only thing that was "stolen" was the general idea, not the implementation of that idea.

The problem with throwing patents into the equation is that they tend to cover not just the implementation but the idea in general.?If you think that protection on an idea is a good thing, imagine how it would apply to writing.

Let's consider a story outline. An orphan teen discovers that they have some unusual power. As the teen grows, wise elders teach the youth to harness that power, to use it for good. While this is happening, an evil force is trying to take control. Many try to stop this force, but fail. The youth is drawn into the fight and eventually has to fight the leader of the evil force. By using their wits, their special power and the power of love, the youth is eventually able to defeat the baddie and win freedom for all.

Does that story sound familiar? If not, it should do. Think Star Wars. Think Harry Potter. If someone would given rights to the story idea, not just a given version of that story, it's possible that these hits would never have been created.

That's my main concern with software patents. Unless something can be done to make them apply to a specific implementation, not just a general idea, they're far too powerful and far too easy to abuse. Once they apply to a specific implementation, they usually offer no more protection than copyright. So why bother?

2607 posts

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+1 received by user: 86

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  Reply # 678138 28-Aug-2012 13:06 Send private message

nzgeek:
spacedog: Software is everything these days. In many cases it requires significant R&D budgets, innovation, design and creating new concepts.

Saying that all software should be exempt and have no protection seems like you are throwing the baby out with the bathwater.

Just to play devil's advocate.....a lack of patent protection can also hinder innovation and development. Why would you pour hundreds of millions of dollars into development if someone could come and decompile, recompile, repackage and resell your product and work? Companies might be disinclined to strive for the best if they will just see their work plagiarized and sold at a lower cost by a competitor who didn't have to invest the same financial resources into R&D.

Software is already covered by copyright. Nobody is allowed to simply take your product, reverse engineer it and create an identical work-alike. If someone wants to make their software do what yours does, they have to figure it out themselves and write the code from scratch. The only thing that was "stolen" was the general idea, not the implementation of that idea.

The problem with throwing patents into the equation is that they tend to cover not just the implementation but the idea in general. If you think that protection on an idea is a good thing, imagine how it would apply to writing.

Let's consider a story outline. An orphan teen discovers that they have some unusual power. As the teen grows, wise elders teach the youth to harness that power, to use it for good. While this is happening, an evil force is trying to take control. Many try to stop this force, but fail. The youth is drawn into the fight and eventually has to fight the leader of the evil force. By using their wits, their special power and the power of love, the youth is eventually able to defeat the baddie and win freedom for all.

Does that story sound familiar? If not, it should do. Think Star Wars. Think Harry Potter. If someone would given rights to the story idea, not just a given version of that story, it's possible that these hits would never have been created.

That's my main concern with software patents. Unless something can be done to make them apply to a specific implementation, not just a general idea, they're far too powerful and far too easy to abuse. Once they apply to a specific implementation, they usually offer no more protection than copyright. So why bother?

2607 posts

Uber Geek
+1 received by user: 86

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  Reply # 678139 28-Aug-2012 13:06 Send private message

nzgeek:
spacedog: Software is everything these days. In many cases it requires significant R&D budgets, innovation, design and creating new concepts.

Saying that all software should be exempt and have no protection seems like you are throwing the baby out with the bathwater.

Just to play devil's advocate.....a lack of patent protection can also hinder innovation and development. Why would you pour hundreds of millions of dollars into development if someone could come and decompile, recompile, repackage and resell your product and work? Companies might be disinclined to strive for the best if they will just see their work plagiarized and sold at a lower cost by a competitor who didn't have to invest the same financial resources into R&D.

Software is already covered by copyright. Nobody is allowed to simply take your product, reverse engineer it and create an identical work-alike. If someone wants to make their software do what yours does, they have to figure it out themselves and write the code from scratch. The only thing that was "stolen" was the general idea, not the implementation of that idea.

The problem with throwing patents into the equation is that they tend to cover not just the implementation but the idea in general. If you think that protection on an idea is a good thing, imagine how it would apply to writing.

Let's consider a story outline. An orphan teen discovers that they have some unusual power. As the teen grows, wise elders teach the youth to harness that power, to use it for good. While this is happening, an evil force is trying to take control. Many try to stop this force, but fail. The youth is drawn into the fight and eventually has to fight the leader of the evil force. By using their wits, their special power and the power of love, the youth is eventually able to defeat the baddie and win freedom for all.

Does that story sound familiar? If not, it should do. Think Star Wars. Think Harry Potter. If someone would given rights to the story idea, not just a given version of that story, it's possible that these hits would never have been created.

That's my main concern with software patents. Unless something can be done to make them apply to a specific implementation, not just a general idea, they're far too powerful and far too easy to abuse. Once they apply to a specific implementation, they usually offer no more protection than copyright. So why bother?


Nice detailed post.  Where do you see pinch to zoom?  It software, but more so it is an idea. Standard fare these days, but a great innovation.

411 posts

Ultimate Geek


  Reply # 678145 28-Aug-2012 13:14 Send private message

Precisely

if apple can prove that their code and methods of implementation has been copied then yeah totally go for an arm and a leg from samsung coz they stole your hard work but they didnt... instead they liked something and found out another way of doing it and did it their own way (and since Apple is so sour now about that - they probably did it better than Apple)..

So either suck it up that someone created a better product than yours or make something even better and beat them at it..

Samsung Galaxy S2 had the voice talk and voice commands way before Siri was released.. but samsung didnt start jumping up and down saying their idea was stolen.. they just accepted that a better voice assistant was created and they made it better in the S3 and with jelly bean "Google Now" even does better..

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Ultimate Geek
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  Reply # 678147 28-Aug-2012 13:21 Send private message

tdgeek: Nice detailed post.  Where do you see pinch to zoom?  It software, but more so it is an idea. Standard fare these days, but a great innovation.

I see pinch-to-zoom falling under the same category. It's an idea, but how it's handled can be done many ways. Nobody should be given full rights to all of those different ways.

It's also not an original idea. In the movie Minority Report (2004), there are scenes where Tom Cruise's character is manipulating data on a holographic screen. There's at least one place in one of these scenes where he zooms in on an image by 'grabbing' a point with each hand and stretching them apart. This is very much a pinch-to-zoom type of interface, being shown in a sci-fi movie that pre-dates the iPhone by more than 2 years.

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  Reply # 678154 28-Aug-2012 13:26 Send private message

nzgeek:
tdgeek: Nice detailed post.  Where do you see pinch to zoom?  It software, but more so it is an idea. Standard fare these days, but a great innovation.

I see pinch-to-zoom falling under the same category. It's an idea, but how it's handled can be done many ways. Nobody should be given full rights to all of those different ways.

It's also not an original idea. In the movie Minority Report (2004), there are scenes where Tom Cruise's character is manipulating data on a holographic screen. There's at least one place in one of these scenes where he zooms in on an image by 'grabbing' a point with each hand and stretching them apart. This is very much a pinch-to-zoom type of interface, being shown in a sci-fi movie that pre-dates the iPhone by more than 2 years.


I'd then assume that the movie did not patent that idea, although it isnt a product, its a movie.

411 posts

Ultimate Geek


  Reply # 678155 28-Aug-2012 13:27 Send private message

tdgeek:
nzgeek:
tdgeek: Nice detailed post.  Where do you see pinch to zoom?  It software, but more so it is an idea. Standard fare these days, but a great innovation.

I see pinch-to-zoom falling under the same category. It's an idea, but how it's handled can be done many ways. Nobody should be given full rights to all of those different ways.

It's also not an original idea. In the movie Minority Report (2004), there are scenes where Tom Cruise's character is manipulating data on a holographic screen. There's at least one place in one of these scenes where he zooms in on an image by 'grabbing' a point with each hand and stretching them apart. This is very much a pinch-to-zoom type of interface, being shown in a sci-fi movie that pre-dates the iPhone by more than 2 years.


I'd then assume that the movie did not patent that idea, although it isnt a product, its a movie.


Lets just say that they werent stupid enough to think that they should...

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