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Patents On Synthetic Life "Extremely Damaging" 171

An anonymous reader writes "Pioneer and veteran of genomics Professor John Sulston is extremely concerned about the patent applications on the first synthetic life-form. The patents were filed by the Venter Institute following the announcement of the first life-form to have a synthetic genome. Sulston claims the patent is excessively broad and would stifle research and development in the field by creating an effective monopoly on synthetic life and related molecular techniques. Prof. Sulston had previously locked horns ten years ago with Dr. Craig Venter over intellectual property issues surrounding the human genome project. Fortunately, Sulston won the last round and the HGP is freely accessible — Venter had wanted to charge for access, just as he now wishes to make 'synthetic life' proprietary."

Asus Planning Netbook With Slot-In Mobile Phone 75

An anonymous reader writes "Taiwanese manufacturer Asus is planning a netbook with a slot-in mobile phone that will double as a 3G communications module, according to a distributor. The arrangement is apparently meant to be an easy way to use the same SIM card and data account for both a phone and a portable computer. The phone module, from an Israeli company called Modu, is already on sale, together with an array of feature-phone shells and other devices that it's designed to slot into. There is some comparison being made with the iPhone and iPad — except that with the Modu approach, you can slot the phone into the netbook."

Submission + - "No Power for the Parliament" warns EPO examiners 2

zoobab writes: The Staff Union of the EPO (SUEPO) sent a letter to the President of the European Parliament, Jerzy Buzek, warning of risks for the European Parliament to be "circumvented" as a legislator when the EU will accede to the European Patent Convention (EPC). The European Patent Organisation is everything except a model of democracy: national patent offices are in power, there is no parliament involved in the decision making process, and diplomatic conferences are held behind closed doors. There are plans to create a central patent court in Europe, which would operate in a democratic vacuum, as it would not be counterbalanced by any legislative assembly, let alone the European Parliament. Such central patent court could also validate software patents via caselaw (as it was recently done with the Microsoft FAT patent by the German Supreme Court), and Microsoft, IBM or SAP are lobbying in Brussels not to reopen the software patent directive.

Comment Re:I don't get it... (Score 1) 141

I don't know what this means. Patents have been around for 200 years and progress hasn't slowed by anyone's account.

Mine! Due to patents we are about 30 years behind. I anticipate that with patents this slow down will accelerate, until we merely reach a status quo

Moreover, this is hardly a "daydream" which seems to imply fanciful idea.

Actually, we are implementing this (generally speaking) "daydream" as a business model Wish-IT, Wish Innovation Technologies (R) (not yet released)

* Like a good slashdotter, I have not actually looked at the patent or RTFA.

Same here, as slashdotters we don't need to. It is funny though, as this last reply was first written to be funny, it is often like a good slashdot article is something you have waited for, and the actual article just confirms that it's here. (OK, this does not apply to this patent though, which just adds to the pile of stupid patents I'm aware of).


Submission + - SIS allows Microsoft to affect OOXML votes! (

aim2future writes: "Microsoft has caused last minute changes to the SIS (Swedish Standards Institute) committee, voting about OOXML. Changing an expected NO to a YES.

"The word for today is "disenfranchisement" ... An attempt to fraudulently disenfranchise a voter is despicable wherever it occurs ... misrepresenting the rules and procedures in order to prevent another party from exercising their right to vote ... is universally deplored."... From Computerworld blogs
If you read swedish: here is an article about Microsoft's raid Microsoftkupp mot formatomröstning and here is a list of companies that Microsoft got into the committee last minute"

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