Today is World Day Against Software Patents


Today is world day against software patents. Check out this article in The Hindu. The industry too has voiced its opinion. Here is what Dr.Sadagopan says: MP3 has been an enormously successful case of software patent; but it is perhaps just one among the handful of such hugely successful ones!” Prof Sadagopan adds: “Many of us would like a moderate regime, where algorithms are not patented; of course, there must be some protection available for unusual algorithms and implementations that have immediate product implications (like MP3).” Does reading the Wikipedia article on MP3 licensing issues convey to you any feeling of its "enormous sucess"? Maybe, Prof.Sadagopan would like to enlighten us as to how we can decide whether an algorithm is "unusual"?

Pramode C.E

Tue Sep 30 06:24:53 2008

The Pike-RMS incident is indeed interesting! It shows just how short-sighted a brilliant person (like Pike - whom you can call a "genius") can be when it comes to understanding the impact of technology on society.

Krishna G Pai

Sun Sep 28 01:19:05 2008

Sir, You may have read this earlier, but you might find this pretty interesting nevertheless, . One of the very dangerous thing about Software Patents , which is generally not mentioned, is that most Algorithms define a class of problems, and that solving any one problem from this class implies solving the whole class. As every problem is reducible to another. This leaves a whole set of problems out of public preview and a potential case for litigation. One would be very mistaken in assuming that MP3's would apply to only audio/video compression/decompression. You could potentially apply them to any data set where lossy compression is desired.

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