Summary: The role played by software patents at the CAFC (United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit, seen above) and how this affects ongoing fights over the future of free operating systems
The software patenting boosters (led by Dennis Crouch) cover some developments regarding the Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit (CAFC), a prominent booster of software patents in the US (and one of the culprit behind their very existence). According to Mark Lemley, who has a weaker position on software patents (he wants reform but won’t promote abolishing software patents), functional claiming may have just been adopted through the back door at the CAFC. Rader, who played a role in all this (Rader has been Chief Judge at CAFC since 2010 and may reign until 2017) does not want real reform (just bogus ones) and as long as that is the case we will continue to treat both him and the CAFC as foes of progress in software. They help endorse a system where extortion is prevalent. Rader’s position actually goes a long way back and the Bilski case is just one example. These are urgent matters because Linux/Free software cannot co-exist with software patents.
“These are urgent matters because Linux/Free software cannot co-exist with software patents.”According to this article, as we noted the other day, B & N is collapsing after Microsoft extortion and a deal/bribe. Pamela Jones writes: “Linux vendors who partner with Microsoft don’t know where up is. Linux customers, however, do. That is the simple explanation. That and Microsoft trying to kill Linux for over a decade now. I have a Nook. And I loved it. In fact, I used it more than the iPad I was given as a gift. I don’t use that any more either, actually. But the day Microsoft announced its settlement with Barnes & Noble’s litigation and its investment in Nook Media, I stopped using it and I’ll never buy another. To most Linux users, a partnership with Microsoft is the kiss of death and we leave the vicinity.”
Todd Bishop, a longtime Microsoft booster, continues to promote Microsoft’s patent agenda while big patent disputes from Microsoft (aimed at Google/Motorola) are trying to destroy Android. If the platform cannot stay free in the cost sense, then it becomes hard to (re)distribute. Microsoft and Apple use patent-stacking against it and the next post will deal with Apple in isolation. █