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Comment Mere firstness quality of implementation (Score 4, Insightful) 180

Patent and copyright are both broken in that they reward mere firstness infinitely more than quality of implementation. They get the whole concept ass-backwards. Ideas are a dime a dozen. It's implementation and marketing where the real work lies. Any fool can have a brilliant idea, indeed we all have them every time we discover something that doesn't work as well as we would like, and in fact I had three yesterday. Probably all three have already been solved in one way or another by other people, but the fact that I don't have, or even know about, a solution implies that the solution isn't good enough or hasn't been marketed well enough. There may be plenty of possible better solutions than mine already thiught of, that the patent system is making non viable because some asshole got there *first* with their half-assed device.

The patent system is even worse than that. At least in the story in the article, the plaintiff has actually implemented *some* kind of solution, however ridiculously expensive. The current US patent system rewards trolling: *not* implementing *anything*, just sitting on the patent until some poor bastard actually bothers to think up a viable solution and produces it, then springing out to snatch a share of *their* work.

And this is the system the US is frantically, despertely attempting to foist onto the rest of the world.


New Fish Species Discovered 4.5 Miles Under the Ocean 96

eldavojohn writes "The University of Aberdeen's Oceanlab (a partner in the recent census of marine life) has discovered a new snailfish. That might not sound very exciting, unless you consider that its habitat is an impressive four and a half miles below the ocean's surface (video). If my calculations are correct, that's over ten and a half thousand PSI, or about seventy-three million Pascals. The videos and pictures are a couple years old, as the team has traveled around Japan, South America and New Zealand to ascertain the biodiversity of these depths. The group hopes to eventually bring specimens to the surface. It seems the deepest parts of the ocean, once thought to be devoid of life, are actually home to some organisms. As researchers build better technology for underwater exploration, tales of yore containing unimaginable monsters seem a little more realistic than before."

Comment 1984-style public recantation (Score 1) 222

The thing that really gives me the shudders about this is the 1984-style public recantation: "We understand Nintendo's right to protect its characters and trademarks and understand how in order to keep their property unspoiled by fan's interpretation of the franchise, Nintendo needs to protect itself -- even from fan-works with good intentions." You can just imagine the tearful, contrite speech through broken teeth ...


Submission + - A one-atom thick billiard table

Roland Piquepaille writes: "A team of physicists at the University of California at Riverside (UCR) have found that graphene, which was isolated experimentally only less than three years ago, and which is a one-atom thick sheet of carbon atoms arranged in hexagonal rings, can act as an atomic-scale billiard table. They found that electrons in graphene behave like quantum billiard balls. This research could lead to new kinds of transistors based on quantum physics. In fact, it's possible that graphene can replace silicon as the basic electronic material in a few years. For example, it could be used to develop ballistic transistors. But read more for additional details and references to decide if graphene is part of our future."

A rock store eventually closed down; they were taking too much for granite.