An anonymous reader writes: In my line of business I occasionally get to see trends of where things are going technology-wise (not quite good enough to predict markets but sometimes close). In one case I can see a technology that police may be using someday soon to pester civilians. I could patent this idea before they figure it out themselves and therefore could effectively block companies from building it for law enforcement for the length of the patent. Win for the little guy, right? But it's a fairly expensive process (figure $10k-20k in legal fees to do it right). Any ideas how I could recoup this cost in a way that wouldn't upset everyone on Slashdot?