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Comment It's typical (Score 1) 468

Most average slashdot summaries (even including summaries that don't include statistics) are less confusing and ambiguous than this summary. But that's only if we are talking about _average_ summaries, not _typical_ summaries.

Submission + - Bilski, the movie: Patent Absurdity ( 2

ciaran_o_riordan writes: With the Supreme Court still working on the Bilski ruling (due before the Summer break), FSF has published a film: Patent Absurdity: how software patents broke the system. Most players in the patents game have an interest in making it sound as complicated as possible. Using the Bilski case as a backdrop, independent film-maker Luca Lucarini explains the situation for a general audience and looks at the series of court cases that dumped software and business method patents on us. The story is told through interviews with Dan Bricklin, Timothy B. Lee, Mark Webbink, Eben Moglen, Dan Ravicher and others. All video production done with free software, and there's a good symphonie at the end.

Submission + - Tridgell recommends reading software patents ( 1

H4x0r Jim Duggan writes: In a recent talk, Andrew Tridgell rejected the common fears about triple damages "If you’ve got one lot of damages for patent infringement, what would happen to the project? It’s dead. If it gets three lots of damages for patent infringement, what happens to the project? It’s still dead." Tridge then explains the right way to read a patent and build a legal defense: "That first type of defence is really the one you want, it’s called: non-infringement. And that is: 'we don’t do that. The patent says X, we don’t do X, therefore go away, sue someone else, it’s not relevant for us'. That’s the defence you want. [...] Next one, prior art: [...] Basically the argument is: somebody else did that before. It’s a very, very tricky argument to get right. Extremely tricky, and it is the most common argument bandied about in the free software community. And if you see it in the primary defence against a patent, you should cringe because it is an extremely unsafe way of doing things." — there are even some tips in the talk specifically for Slashdotters.

Submission + - P2P Link sites and P2P declared legal in Spain (

unity100 writes: Spanish music group SGAE (Sociedad General de Autores y Editores) lost big time, and maybe set a Europe-wide precedent in regard to noncommercial p2p link sites, and noncommercial p2p filesharing in Spain. Despite many prior rulings declaring filesharing sites legal if they didnt directly profit from copyright infringements, music groups in spain were still shutting down individual sites in advance of court hearings to assess their legality. After looking at the finances of the website operated by Jesus Guerra and concluding that he didnt profit from copyright infringement, Judge also delivered a staggering blow to copyright groups, saying “P2P networks are mere conduits for the transmission of data between Internet users, and on this basis they do not infringe rights protected by Intellectual Property laws ...” Now two routes open for SGAE is appealing the decision, or trying to get law changed.

Comment info from (Score 1, Troll) 204

Here's what I have already on them: is a publicly editable wiki, help welcome.

Comment A critic, but not direct opponent of swpats (Score 3, Informative) 628

Tim's critical of software patents, but his position is that there's just an implimentation problem - with good tweaking it could work. Kinda disappointing that he's not pushing for abolition. Surprising too given his experience in web dev and XML. Related info: is a publicly-editable wiki - help in expanding this info would be very welcome and useful.

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