Forbes columnist on "Microsoft's Android Shakedown"


Nice quote: "Getting software patents takes a lot of work, but it's not primarily engineering effort. The complexity of software and low standards for patent eligibility mean that software engineers produce potentially patentable ideas all the time. But most engineers don't think of these relatively trivial ideas as 'inventions' worthy of a patent. What's needed to get tens of thousands of patents is a re-education campaign to train engineers to write down every trivial idea that pops into their heads, and a large and disciplined legal bureaucracy to turn all those ideas into patent applications."

But I think there's one more point to be made here.

The decades-old Sun/IBM incident, narrated as the intro to that article, doesn't describe what would happen today. The alternative the "blue suit" suggested was one where IBM would actually spend the time to find *real* infringements, if Sun refused to buckle.

That was the 80s. Today, if HTC resisted, MS would proceed directly to litigation even if they knew the specific claims being made were without merit.

In other words, while Sun capitulated due to the fear of real infringement being found, I believe today's defendants pay up due to fear of the litigation itself!

Big difference!

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