Software Patents Sure Are Weird
2015 02 17
- The date on the title page indicates version 1.5.2 was released 2008-06-04
- Chapter 4 specifically covers software patents, and the various obstacles
(and generic advice on defenses) that software patents create for FOSS projects
- I have a much better understanding of why software patents are so hated -
they are confusing, and seem designed for exploitation and other nastiness.
- I find that a legal organization (granted, in a general context) saying
"design around the obstacle patent" really humorous. That seems like a bad idea,
for a number of reasons.
- This may be incorrect, but I'm left with the impression that, if one wants
to put in the work, most patents can be invalidated (relatively) easily?
That's encouraging, I suppose.
- I have difficulty understanding why this document was written. It seems like
every other paragraph is "consult legal counsel for specific needs" or similar.
Why wouldn't I just go to a lawyer to begin with? (S)he could probably tell
me all this information, perhaps more succinctly.
- The whole section 4.3 "Becoming Aware of a Patent" seems really strange.
It (from what I understand) pretty much says "wait for them to come to you,
then get a lawyer". What?!
- This chapter was even less readable than the last two. I understand why
lawyers get paid so much - this is difficult to understand, and incredibly
- Given the (from what I can tell) significant outrage about the current state
of software patents, is there or has there been any attempts at adjusting the laws
concerning software patents?
- Of the patent troll cases I've heard of, why are patents granted to such
vague and generic software patents?
- Who the heck comes up with the time periods in our legal system? Maintenance
fees are due every 4.5 years? You can seek damages for infringements occurring
up to 6 years in the past? Why those numbers?!
- While I did glean some useful knowledge from this chapter, I found most of it useless.
I feel like most sections were simply "you could do this, but you should
probably just talk to a lawyer". In addition, I'm not sure if I should be more
afraid of software patents, or less so since they seem easy to invalidate.
There was some solid content, but it was buried behind vast walls of legal
2/5 <review increments>