Timothy B. Lee writes: "I've got an article in the New York Times in which I make the case against software patents. Expanding on a point I first made on my blog, I point out that Microsoft has had a change of heart on the patent issue. In 1991, Bill Gates worried that "some large company will patent some obvious thing" and use it to blackmail smaller companies. Now that Microsoft is a large company with a patent war-chest of their own, they don't seem so concerned about abuse of the patent system. I then point out that Verizon's efforts to shut down Vonage are a perfect illustration of Gates's fears."