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What I cannot do is get a copy of another game company's code and copy and paste that as my code. Also, I cannot copy the images/graphics that company is using.
Now does that make it "right" for me to copy little indie game company's concept when they pitch an idea to me? I would say no, but that is why you need a good NDA agreement before shopping an idea. Without legally protected content (patent, trademark, or copyright protected), you need a good contract to make the other side legally obligated to not disclose your idea in the form of their own game. Of course, the other side will always say we were already developing the concept internally blah blah blah. Independent creation blah blah blah
A method comprising:
- determining a user is scheduled to travel to a destination on a current date;
- determining a portable electronic device in possession by the user is powered off;
- determining the user arrived at the destination by detecting that the portable electronic device has been powered back on; and
- transmitting an arrival notification of the arrival of the user to at least one third party recipient.
On a related question, does anyone have any experience using a wacom tablet display for this kind of purpose? I know that $1800 seems like overkill and a waste of an computer artist's dream device, but I am pretty sure that it might pay for itself with print costs and efficiency over the life of the device. If the iPad could do this, I think it would be a hit in the business world, though I did read an article claiming Apple doesn't about the business market so I have that going against my dream device...
What is really neat is the presumption of willfullness under section 3 when the violator "knowingly provided or knowingly caused to be provided materially false contact information to a domain name registrar, domain name registry, or other domain name registration authority in registering, maintaining, or renewing a domain name used in connection with the infringement."
It might be obvious to add into a messaging device, but the USPTO would need to find a couple of prior art references that contain all the features and then show a reason to combine them. The PTO doesn't get to just say, "it would be obvious to do that, kneener kneener kneeeener"
If it isn't legal advice, then you want to go look to contract and sale of goods laws. The law surrounding warranty would likely apply, though many warranties may be disclaimed. As far as I know, there are no particular laws for complex versus simple products. There are default warranties such as the implied warranty that a good is capable of performing its particular purpose (this warranty can be disclaimed by the seller though). Product liability and warranty disclaimer is a tricky bit of law, hence the 15 million pages of disclaimers we get when we purchase something, which we are all assumed to have read.
Interstingly, Legalzoom is a corporation and as such, is not legally allowed to provide legal advice. Many states, allow for Limited Liability Partnerships which as similar to corps. but do not entirely insulate an individual from a lawsuit. In an LLP, one partner is not liable for the malpractice of another partner, but each is liable for his/her own malpractice. Thus, LLPs do not provide absolute insulation from professional liability but the firm as a whole is insulated for another's liability.
Corporations have much broader insulation for shareholders to encourage investment. LLP's aren't allowed to have non-professional investors. Thus, if the LLP is a law firm then only lawyers may invest in the LLP. If the LLP is a medical practice, then only doctors. Basically, most states don't want to guarantee no liability for people in these fields but still want to encourage efficient partnerships. Thus, the LLP was formed.
The fact the Legalzoom exists as a corporation tends to promote the idea that these form providers are not handing out legal advice, at least not under the definition of the states where they provide there forms. Of course, they may be "risking" it and might be in violation of some state's law, but I didn't take the time to go check any individual state's law on the unauthorized practice of law with reference to "legal" forms. There is likely some case law out there with respect to tax forms and wills/trusts forms since people have been publishing self-help books with template forms in those areas for decades.