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Comment Re: Abolish software patents (Score 1) 204

Thanks for the clarification, but I think for my point, the legal differences are immaterial.

The germane sections of the US code [ http://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/text/17/102 ] in general state:

"(a) Copyright protection subsists, in accordance with this title, in original works of authorship fixed in any tangible medium of expression, now known or later developed, from which they can be perceived, reproduced, or otherwise communicated, either directly or with the aid of a machine or device. "

As I noted in an earlier post, specific code [called "an original work of authorship"] can be have protection under the statute, but not the processes executed.
"(b) In no case does copyright protection for an original work of authorship extend to any idea, procedure, process, system, method of operation, concept, principle, or discovery, regardless of the form in which it is described, explained, illustrated, or embodied in such work."

Patents extend to things, processes, systems and the like.

So, as a lawyer, I think either could apply. And the last piece of software I wrote was a batch file no one would pay for.

Comment Re: Abolish software patents (Score 4, Informative) 204

Not in the same fashion:
U.S. Code Title 17 Chapter 1 102 "(b) In no case does copyright protection for an original work of authorship extend to any idea, procedure, process, system, method of operation, concept, principle, or discovery, regardless of the form in which it is described, explained, illustrated, or embodied in such work."

http://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/text/17/102

So, where Congress extended copyright in 1980 to computer programs, that is different than the underlying method or process.

The Supreme Court held in this case that a payment system was too basic to merit patent protection and declined to hear the appeal.

Comment Re: Abolish software patents (Score 2) 204

Then you'll be happy with the SCt. here. In this instance, they stated that you can't patent something so basic and obvious.

http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2014-01-13/internet-patent-owner-loses-high-court-bid-to-revive-suit.html

"The U.S. Supreme Court rebuffed an electronic-commerce patent owner’s effort to revive a $2.5 million verdict against Internet retailer Newegg Inc., in a case with implications for dozens of other companies.
The justices refused to hear closely held Soverain Software LLC’s appeal of a lower court ruling that its technology was too obvious to qualify for patent protection."

The lawyers affecting real law. Sensible outcome. Yeah, America!

Comment Re: Don't. (Score 3, Interesting) 336

Guy I know is a builder. Has a closet on the top floor of his house that opens into a crawlway [lighted with LED lamps] leading to each room on the top floor. There are 2 large pieces of PVC pipe with wiring running in and out. One is to the 1st floor room below and the other is to the 2d story room beneath. There is a set of 2 larger PVC pipes that lead to the basement and electrical switching and panels. He has a strand of fish tape [http://www.harborfreight.com/50-ft-fish-tape-38156.html] in each to facilitate pulling wires.

He said it doubled the cost of wiring the house, but it has future proofed any wiring or room access needs.

He is a guy with a lot of money and WAY too much time on his hands, but I thought it was cool. He shows it off at cocktail parties. 7,000 sq. ft. house, sold it for 4 times the cost to build it 6 years earlier.

Comment Seriously.... (Score 1) 336

I have 2 strands of Cat-5e into every room [I use one for 2 telephone lines], a strand of coax and 4 "2-gang" electrical sockets in each room, one on each wall. Try to put the RJ-45, RJ-15 and coax away from the wall with the window or heater. Most likely not where you will put the TV or computer.

Tell the electrician you want each strand to be an "end run" with no splices. Have them all terminate in a room ["the nerve center"] that is not the boiler room nor contains electrical panels, but preferably where your telephone, fiber and cable come into the house. My good friend was the electrician and cut me a real deal.

Label each of the strands coming into the nerve center and your patch panel and then use a gigabit switch and/or wireless throughout.

Cost me a fortune 15 years ago. Still works great. With wireless phones, cell phones and wi/fi, none of it was so vital.

Someone wrote with the idea for conduit between rooms in the walls for future wiring. I like it. Aircraft carriers are built that way.

One non-automation note: radiant floor heat. Best investment in the house I ever made.

Comment Re:Nothing is obvious ... (Score 1) 204

This is the equivalent of certain other counties in State courts where class actions were being filed, courts that were VERY friendly to the plaintiff's bar.

CAFA [the Class Action Fairness Act of 2005, 28 U.S.C. ss 1332(d), 1453, and 1711–1715] stopped hometown litigation. It brought any action under FRCP 23 [Federal Rule of Civil Procedure (deals with class actions)] into federal court and brought a level playing field to the area of the law.

Since there is so much money involved in patents, having a separate court system [like the bankruptcy court] might make that area of the law more fair.

Comment re: Abolish software patents (Score -1, Redundant) 204

But where's the incentive for the creative mind to write the software, bring it to market, support it, etc.? It looks like pretty hard work that isn't certain to pay off.

I understand free as in speech and free as in beer, but there is no free as in groceries. Even coders need to pay rent.

If you want to make the life of the patent shorter or non-renewable, with the goal to not stifle innovation on top of older patents, maybe. But everyone should have a shot at the brass ring.

Comment Why the hell not, indeed. (Score 1) 250

Under various state laws, companies that hold personal private information have a responsibility to notify people when that information is no longer in their control.

Some are statutory periods of time, like 60 days. Others are more nebulous. ("As soon as possible reasonably practicable.")

The longer they wait to report, the more liable to make themselves under the laws.

Submission + - How can I improve my memory retention during studying? 4

Sensei_knight writes: How serendipitous! Today I see Slashdot also has an article linking caffeine to long-term memory, but I digress. Recently I returned to college in my 30s after battling a childhood sleep disorder and I now discover staying awake might be the least of my troubles. Now that I failed a few classes I'm trying to analyze and overcome the causes of this recent disaster. Two things are obvious. First, it takes me way too long to complete tasks (as if suffering from time dilation) tests take me approximately twice the amount of time to finish[and the amount of time it takes to study and do homework is cumulative and unsustainable]. Secondly, I just can't seem to remember a whole lot. I know sleep and memory are very closely related, perhaps that's why I have never been able to commit the times tables to memory. my research in the subject of memory has not been very fruitful, therefore I want to ask/Slashdots for input into which angle/direction I should look into next. As for cognitive speed I have completely drawn a blank.

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