EditorsAbout the SiteComes vs. MicrosoftUsing This Web SiteSite ArchivesCredibility IndexOOXMLOpenDocumentPatentsNovellNews DigestSite NewsRSS

03.06.08

USPTO As Broken as Always, Proof Herein

Posted in Free/Libre Software, Hardware, Patents at 2:03 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Repeating the same mistakes of the drug industry

Whenever you find comfort in the belief that you have seen enough, here comes another disturbance. This one is from RIM.

What do you get if you mesh a dual-orientation handset together with a slide-out keyboard and a tracker ball? Potentially, the next BlackBerry from Research in Motion (RIM), if its latest patent application is anything to go by.

USPTOWhat RIM patents here has plenty of prior art and we recently saw an incident where RIM actually sued unnecessarily, attacking a weaker company like Motorola using weak patents applicable to wireless communication standards. The Nokia N810 and the Mylo from Sony seem rather similar to the design in this patent application, but this does not seem to bother or deter RIM. Remember what these people think: More Patents = More Innovation. But not so fast!

It seems like a patents blog has just shown up (or been born) in C|Net and it now speaks about the “first-to-file” rule, which renders the whole system utterly pointless and prone to error.

Generally, the first person to file the lawsuit gets to choose where the suit is brought. This is called the “first-to-file” rule. It works much like the lines you stand in at the grocery store, airport security, or countless other places; it’s simply first come, first served.

However, in the context of patent litigation, being first in line is a big deal. Different courts have different procedural rules that can affect the way a case is litigated and the speed at which the case goes to trial. Moreover, there is a perception that courts in certain areas are more plaintiff-friendly than others.

The term “first-to-file” is used in numerous other circumstances which equally well demonstrate the weakness of the whole approach. The pharmaceutical industry is already learning its lessons, so why can’t others?

Below we’re appending some relevant and recent stories about conclusions arrived by drug companies and biologists. They are sorted reverse-chronologically (roughly).


1. Open Lab

The open source wave could soon power drug discovery initiatives in the country. A decentralised, web-based initiative is emerging that would enable scientists from laboratories, universities, institutes, and drug Companies to work together in discovering new drugs for diseases like tuberculosis (TB), malaria, various types of cancer, AIDS, Chikungunya, Kala-azar, dengue fever, etc.

2. Open-source model for drug discovery?

Significant public funding along with the ability for private enterprise to benefit from the open source approach will result in a strong public-private partnership and ensure success of the open source approach.

3. Open source drug discovery

The idea, taking off from successful open source models such as the human genome sequencing initiative, is very simple. All the relevant data and accumulated intelligence on a particular disease, tuberculosis to begin with, would be hosted online.

4. ‘Open source’ urged for TB drug design effort

One of India’s top genetics researchers has called for a global, collaborative effort to design a new tuberculosis (TB) drug using an ‘open source’ approach.

5. Open Source Pharmaceuticals – New Business Model

Software is not the only field affected by open source; many fields of study and social and political views have been affected by the growth of the concept of open source. Advocates in one field will often support the expansion of open source in other fields, including Linus Torvalds who is quoted as saying, “the future is open source everything.”

6. Open source synthetic biology

Not everyone within synthetic biology takes the open-source approach, Andrew Hessel, an iGEM consultant who recruits teams from Canadian universities, told me, but the driving force behind it is iGEM and MIT (Rettberg works with renowned hacker-turned-synthetic biologist Tom Knight). Hessel likened the atmosphere to the time when computers were first becoming cheap enough to be affordable by anyone who wanted one, and young, bright kids began to play around with code.

7. Biology Goes Open Source

Some of the world’s biggest drug companies are finding that their genetic research is worth more to them if they give it away.

8. Pharmac publishes directly with open source

The team used Python, libxml/libxslt and TeX, running on Debian GNU/Linux, and the open document standards TeX, XML, MathML, XHTML, and Xlink, says Geering.

9. Open Source Research — the Power of Us

Open source methods have delivered tangible benefits in the computer science community. We describe here efforts to extend these principles to science generally, and in particular biomedical research. Open source research holds great promise for solving complex problems in areas where profit-driven research is seen to have failed. We illustrate this with a specific problem in organic chemistry that we think will be solved substantially faster with an open source approach.

10. Our Biotech Future [is Open Source]

Open Source biology could be a powerful tool, giving us access to cheap and abundant solar energy.

11. Open-Source Drug Safety?

More than a million Americans take Avandia every year; the risk Glaxo had found would mean thousands of extra heart attacks. But the company argued that the risk only occurred in patients who already had serious heart problems, and that it didn’t show up in long-term clinical trials. The FDA made no decision, and no public statement.

[...]

It’s an open source approach to drug safety.

12. Open Source Pharmaceuticals – New Business Model

“Open source” as applied to culture defines a culture in which intellectual property is made generally available. Participants in such a culture are able to improve and modify those products and redistribute them back into the community.

13. Thailand fed up with high drug prices – minister

“We have thought about this for more than five years. It’s long enough,” said Mongkol na Songkhla, who is leading one of the biggest challenges to Big Pharma’s patent rights in years.

In relation to this:

“Collaboration reduces development costs and subsequent high prices, and therefore precludes the need for patents. Took them long enough to figure that out, didn’t it?”

Slated, March 4th 2008

Time for change. Software patents do more harm than good.

Share this post: These icons link to social bookmarking sites where readers can share and discover new web pages.
  • Digg
  • del.icio.us
  • Reddit
  • co.mments
  • DZone
  • email
  • Google Bookmarks
  • LinkedIn
  • NewsVine
  • Print
  • Technorati
  • TwitThis
  • Facebook

If you liked this post, consider subscribing to the RSS feed or join us now at the IRC channels.

Pages that cross-reference this one

A Single Comment

  1. mcintosh said,

    March 6, 2008 at 7:58 am

    Gravatar

    You want proof that our patent system is broken? Look up US patent number 6,960,975. Not only is there a metric (donkey)load of prior conceptual art in at least a half century’s science fiction, but reduction to practice is not presently possible.

What Else is New


  1. Links 5/6/2020: LibreELEC (Leia) 9.2.3, Rust 1.44.0, and Hamburg's Pivot to Free/Libre Software

    Links for the day



  2. This Article About GitHub Takeover Never Appeared (Likely Spiked by Microsoft and Its Friends Inside the Media)

    And later they wonder why people distrust so much of the media (where paying advertisers set the agenda/tone)



  3. Raw: How Microsoft and/or the EPO Killed an Important EPO Story About Their SLAPP Against Techrights and Others

    Spiking a story about spiked stories about corruption



  4. The Linux Foundation 'Bootcamp' -- Badly Timed and Badly Named in June 2020 -- Only Uses Linus Torvalds Like a 'Prop' (for Legitimacy) While Promoting Militarised Monopolies

    Sometimes a picture says a lot more than words, especially in light of political events in the US and a certain Chinese anniversary we cannot name (Microsoft censors mentions of it)



  5. IRC Proceedings: Thursday, June 04, 2020

    IRC logs for Thursday, June 04, 2020



  6. The Gates Press (GatesGate) -- Part II: When Media That You Bribe Calls All Your Critics 'Conspiracy Theorists' (to Keep Them Silenced, Marginalised)

    The assault on the media by Bill Gates is a subject not often explored by the media (maybe because a lot of it is already bribed by him); but we're beginning to gather new and important evidence that explains how critics are muzzled (even fired) and critical pieces spiked, never to see the light of day anywhere



  7. GitHub is Not Sharing But 'Theft' by Microsoft

    Microsoft buying GitHub does not demonstrate that Microsoft loves Open Source (GitHub is not Open Source and may never be) but that it loves monopoly and coercion (what GitHub is all about and why it must be rejected)



  8. The Huge Damage (Except for Patent Lawyers' Bottom Line) Caused by Fake European Patents

    The European Patent Office (EPO) keeps granting fake patents that cause a lot of real harm (examiners are pressured to play along and participate in this unlawful agenda); nobody is happy except those who profit from needless, frivolous lawsuits



  9. Red Hat/IBM Got 'Tired' of RMS. Is It Getting 'Tired' of GPL/Copyleft Too?

    After contributing to the cancellation of Richard Stallman (RMS) based on some falsehoods perpetuated in the media we're seeing the sort of thing one might expect from IBM (more so now that it totally controls Fedora and RHEL)



  10. Links 4/6/2020: Proton 5.0-8 Release Candidate, GNU Linux-libre 5.7

    Links for the day



  11. IRC Proceedings: Wednesday, June 03, 2020

    IRC logs for Wednesday, June 03, 2020



  12. Social Engineering of Free Software, Based on Corporate Criteria

    What "professional" nowadays means in the context of coding and honest assessment of technical work



  13. Weakening GNU/Linux by Disempowering Its Leaders and Founders, Replacing Them With Microsoft Employees and GNU/Linux-Hostile Moles

    The coup to remove (or remove power from) Stallman and Torvalds, the GNU and Linux founders respectively, is followed by outsourcing of their work to Microsoft’s newly-acquired monopoly (GitHub) and appointment of Microsoft workers or Microsoft-friendly people, shoehorning them into top roles under the disingenuous guise of "professionalism"



  14. Sword Group Violates Its Own Commitment by Working for the EPO

    The European Patent Office (EPO) keeps outsourcing its work to outside contractors (for-profit private entities) to the tune of hundreds of millions if not billions — all this without any oversight



  15. In 2020 Canonical No Longer Fights for Freedom

    Freedom requires a GNU/Linux distro other than Ubuntu, which seems unwilling or unable/incapable of speaking about and promoting the ideals of GNU/Linux



  16. We Need to Use the F Word (Freedom) to Promote Adoption of GNU/Linux

    "People get the government their behavior deserves. People deserve better than that." -Richard Stallman



  17. People Who Want to Explore GNU/Linux With Ubuntu See This Today

    "Wait, am I in a GNU/Linux blog or another Windows blog," a visitor might think... or, is Microsoft 'taking over' messaging at Canonical? (Same with code)



  18. Links 4/6/2020: Septor 2020.3, Nextcloud and Blender 2.83

    Links for the day



  19. Hey, Where's Red Hat (IBM)?

    Red Hat is conspicuously silent at these critical times (in its home country); Must be too busy hailing and cashing in on Trump's military (state) while dishing out shallow and self-contradictory diversity PR/fluff…



  20. Microsoft's Latest Vapourware About Supercomputers

    Microsoft has spent almost two decades dropping supercomputers vapourware on the media, but those misinformation dumps always turn out to be 100% hot air, no substance



  21. 2020: A Time for Resolutions or Revolutions?

    There are nonviolent means by which the current system can be corrected; we need to convince peers and relatives to change the way they behave and not cooperate with unjust elements of the system



  22. IRC Proceedings: Tuesday, June 02, 2020

    IRC logs for Tuesday, June 02, 2020



  23. The Gates Press (GatesGate) -- Part I: Lost the Job After Writing an Article Critical of Bill Gates for Attacking Some Actual, Legitimate Charities (Because They Had Spread GNU/Linux)

    The sociopaths from the fake 'charity' of Bill Gates would go to great lengths to squash criticism and also to eliminate critics; this series tells the story of some of those personally affected



  24. Don't Fall for the Spin, Microsoft is Laying Off Workers and It's Not Just Because of the Pandemic





  25. All They Want is Litigation, Not Innovation

    It's getting difficult to ignore or to overlook the fact that the 'litigation lobby' (the likes of Team UPC and today's EPO management, guided by groups like the Licensing Executives Society International) doesn't care about innovation and is in fact looking to profit by crushing innovation



  26. Reminder: Microsoft Profits From Crushing Protesters for Donald Trump

    Don't lose sight of the fact that what's going on in the United States right now is very profitable to Microsoft



  27. No, GNU/Linux Isn't at 3% and Windows Isn't at Over 90%, Either

    This ludicrous idea that "Linux" (however one defines it) enjoys just 3% of the "market" is false and it should be treated as laughable spin (it is being widely promoted this week, often by Microsoft boosters looking to make charts where Windows stays at above 90% and Vista 10 is 'gaining'... at the expense of Windows)



  28. Links 3/6/2020: Devuan Beowulf 3.0.0 and Tails 4.7 Released

    Links for the day



  29. Links 2/6/2020: New Firefox Release (77), Debian-based MX Linux 19.2, KDevelop 5.5.2, GNU/Linux Growth on Desktops/Laptops

    Links for the day



  30. Techrights Can Figure Out Source Protection/Anonymisation Whilst Operating Very Transparently

    We're still quite radically transparent whilst at the same time enjoying 100% source protection record; we're also improving the software we use to publish more quickly and efficiently


RSS 64x64RSS Feed: subscribe to the RSS feed for regular updates

Home iconSite Wiki: You can improve this site by helping the extension of the site's content

Home iconSite Home: Background about the site and some key features in the front page

Chat iconIRC Channel: Come and chat with us in real time

Recent Posts