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Submission + - How apple took advantage of a broken patent system (

Cutting_Crew writes: " Information Week has an interesting article about how Apple has taken advantage of a broken patent system that has not kept up with technology.

Design patents seems to have come from a case involving silverware in 1891. "Design patents are generally agreed to be more subjective. They're good for 14 years, and spring from an 1891 court case that found one silverware manufacturer had copied the pattern of another. If the "ordinary observer" can detect "substantial similarity" in one silverware pattern versus another, the original's design has been infringed, ruled the Supreme Court. And that's still the standard used in a design patent case involving two sophisticated, multi-layered electronic devices today."

Has Apple gotten too close to the patent office or does the patent office lack the kind of expertise in the ever evolving technology field to decide in an unbiased fashion to grant a patent or not?

"Until now, design patents have tended to play a much smaller role in computing and consumer electronics. For example, of the 6,242 patent examiners in the U.S. Patent Office, 99 of them are design examiners. The rest are utility patent examiners.""


Submission + - The Worst Apple Store in America - An Employee Confession (

Cutting_Crew writes: "Gizmodo has a piece that describes probably one of the worst and most corrupt apple stores.

Two employees recount management exchanging brand new computers for facelifts(and other things) not just from customers but also from businesses. Everything else ranged from destroying devices repeatedly and ringing up new ones(for themselves and friends as fake customers) to outright stealing merchandise and cash.

I guess we should all make sure that we are polite when coming in for a repair just in case your "genius" help is intoxicated."

Hotels are tired of getting ripped off. I checked into a hotel and they had towels from my house. -- Mark Guido