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Thread: BBC: Ubuntu's Mark Shuttleworth on shaking up system software

  1. #1
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    BBC: Ubuntu's Mark Shuttleworth on shaking up system software

    limit of complete degeneracy,



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    Re: BBC: Ubuntu's Mark Shuttleworth on shaking up system software

    Quote Originally Posted by Mark Shuttleworth
    "We know that we are sort of dancing naked through a minefield and there are much bigger institutions driving tanks through," Mr Shuttleworth says.

    "It's basically impossible to ship any kind of working software without potentially trampling on some patent somewhere in the world, and it's completely impossible to do anything to prevent that.

    "The patents system is being used to slow down a lot of healthy competition and that's a real problem. I think that the countries that have essentially figured that out and put hard limits on what you can patent will in fact do better."
    There is more said in these four sentences than in most tech news articles out there, and I really love how Mark just nails it like this. Whether anyone out there amongst the "civilian" population will understand the significance or recognize the legitimacy of these statements is, of course, an open question.

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    Re: BBC: Ubuntu's Mark Shuttleworth on shaking up system software

    Quote Originally Posted by MisterGaribaldi View Post
    There is more said in these four sentences than in most tech news articles out there, and I really love how Mark just nails it like this. Whether anyone out there amongst the "civilian" population will understand the significance or recognize the legitimacy of these statements is, of course, an open question.
    Well said statement
    "civilian"
    add this

    sucking up
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    Two tin cans are better than an iphone

    http://www.ehow.co.uk/how_2067160_ma...hone.html?cr=1

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    Re: BBC: Ubuntu's Mark Shuttleworth on shaking up system software

    I know nobody (or darned few) would do this, but my suggestion is for the F/OSS community to ignore the whole patent thing, produce what they want to produce, and then force the hand of governments and businesses everywhere by ignoring such anti-competitive laws or any related anti-competitive court rulings. Keep it up until it forces governments to start acting in utterly irrational ways, and let the people see just how dysfunctional the whole mess truly is.

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    Re: BBC: Ubuntu's Mark Shuttleworth on shaking up system software

    Quote Originally Posted by MisterGaribaldi View Post
    I know nobody (or darned few) would do this, but my suggestion is for the F/OSS community to ignore the whole patent thing, produce what they want to produce, and then force the hand of governments and businesses everywhere by ignoring such anti-competitive laws or any related anti-competitive court rulings. Keep it up until it forces governments to start acting in utterly irrational ways, and let the people see just how dysfunctional the whole mess truly is.
    I hate patents just as much as you do, but this is frankly a stupid and irresponsible suggestion. Stupid, because knowingly infringing on patents has huge legal consequences. For example, if Canonical ignored patents, then they'd be fined, probably into bankruptcy. Irresponsible, because it's not your money on the line.

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    Re: BBC: Ubuntu's Mark Shuttleworth on shaking up system software

    Quote Originally Posted by MisterGaribaldi View Post
    I know nobody (or darned few) would do this, but my suggestion is for the F/OSS community to ignore the whole patent thing, produce what they want to produce, and then force the hand of governments and businesses everywhere by ignoring such anti-competitive laws or any related anti-competitive court rulings. Keep it up until it forces governments to start acting in utterly irrational ways, and let the people see just how dysfunctional the whole mess truly is.
    Ignoring patents is what a lot of Tech company's are doing. It is the reason there is so many court cases. If they investigated when developing and find patents contact the rights owner and negotiate a mutually beneficial agreement BEFORE launching a product.
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    Re: BBC: Ubuntu's Mark Shuttleworth on shaking up system software

    Quote Originally Posted by MisterGaribaldi View Post
    I know nobody (or darned few) would do this, but my suggestion is for the F/OSS community to ignore the whole patent thing, produce what they want to produce, and then force the hand of governments and businesses everywhere by ignoring such anti-competitive laws or any related anti-competitive court rulings. Keep it up until it forces governments to start acting in utterly irrational ways, and let the people see just how dysfunctional the whole mess truly is.
    Nice idea but totally risky nowadays. The community is made by individuals or teams. It is really easy for a patent owner to go in court and ruin financially the guy (or guys) that assumed your stance. What would be their defence? "Hey judge, I know I've ignored the legal rights of the patent owner - but wait for several years when we have had proven that the whole patent stuff it is impractical and irrational. Please judge us based on this assumption and not on the law". Yup - that would totally work.

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    Re: BBC: Ubuntu's Mark Shuttleworth on shaking up system software

    The problem is that patent law regarding software differs widely around the world. Europe takes a very different stance on it than the US does for example, so what's ok in one jurisdiction isn't in another. Hence SABDFL's allusion to dancing through a minefield.

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    Re: BBC: Ubuntu's Mark Shuttleworth on shaking up system software

    First off, the "software" class of patents is relatively new, and because of the nature of software and coding, is not a boon to anyone, unless you're a patent squatter.

    Secondly, this isn't the case of John Smith holding one or two patents on X, and **** Jones holding a patent on Y, and Sally Smith holding a patent on Z. This is a matter of Foo, Inc., holding patents on A, B, C, D, E, F, G, H, I, J, K, L, M, N, O, P, Q, R, S, T, U, V, W, X, Y, Z, AA, AB, AC, AD, AE, AF, AG, AH, AI, AJ, AK, AL, AM, AN, AO, AP, AQ, AR, AS, AT, AU, AV, AW, AX, AY, and AZ; and Blah, LLC. holding patents on A1, B1, C1, D1, E1, F1, G1, H1, I1, J1, K1, L1, M1, N1, O1, P1, Q1, R1, S1, T1, U1, V1, W1, X1, Y1, Z1 and BA, BB, BC, BD, BE, BF, BG, BH, BI, BJ, BK, BL, BM, BN, BO, BP, BQ, BR, BS, BT, BU, BV, BW, BX, BY, BZ, and Wow, GmbH holding patents on... etc., and so forth. You get the idea.

    Most of these aren't necessarily things they developed because they intend to pursue them, but as war chests to use to fight off other companies doing the same. And so we the people are stuck in situations where there are these mind-bubbling numbers of patents floating around out there, often for non-obvious things or things which shouldn't probably even be patentable, and yet the moment you either "type that code" or conceive of code which "performs that kind of task" you're screwed.

    So no, I don't have the slightest respect for any of the players here, and I don't honestly see why, in good conscience, anyone else should. They're the bad guys screwing us, but we should be the ones wearing kid gloves and playing nice? I don't think so.

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    Re: BBC: Ubuntu's Mark Shuttleworth on shaking up system software

    I believe that patents do serve a purpose, however having said that patents should be time bombed with a calculated to give a time period to allow a reasonable return on investment for the creator. With the nature of the software industry and the very high obsolescence rates two years should be a sufficient time frame to hold a patent.
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