[Top][All Lists]

[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index]

Re: [DotGNU]IBM, Microsoft plot Net takeover

From: David Sugar
Subject: Re: [DotGNU]IBM, Microsoft plot Net takeover
Date: Sun, 14 Apr 2002 17:27:05 -0400 (EDT)

If one takes an existing standard, "estimates" things that can be 
implimented around them, and then starts writing patent applications for 
this, if the patent office actually did it's job such patents should not 
be granted or valid, even before considering how flawed the very notion of 
patents on software, on ideas, is.

A patent has to be both "original" and "non-obvious to people versed in
the art".  If I look at SOAP, consider the current direction of the
evolving standard, and then say, "hmm, it doesn't yet include encryption,
clearly it is needed at some point as part of a future revision of the
standard, let me patent that in front of them", clearly it is both trivial
and something obvious.  Shotgunning a patent around a standard this way 
should be considered criminal behavior.

On Sun, 14 Apr 2002, Barry Fitzgerald wrote:

> David Sugar wrote:
> > 
> > As far as I recall, the patents involved refer to specific "extensions"
> > to SOAP, rather than to a reference or "standard" implimentation.  One
> > could simply, for example, create an "extension" to HTTP and then
> > similarly misuse the patent system to make some patent claim on it
> > (https? :), but this does not invalidate or encumber the original
> > standard or reference implimentations of the original standard or our
> > ability to create free software for or using the original standard.
> > 
> > The risk is one where the extension becomes a defacto standard onto
> > itself or one a maliable standards body might wish to endorse, like what
> > happened to https.  With the way current patent laws are enforced in
> > this country, this can potentially happen to any protocol family and
> > represents a common risk to software freedom everywhere.  Certainly it
> > is not a specific problem unique to SOAP.
> > 
> Agreed - but we could still fight the patent if necessary.  But, in this
> situation, it's equally possible to use the base standard and create our
> own unencumbered extensions to the standard.  
>       -Barry

reply via email to

[Prev in Thread] Current Thread [Next in Thread]