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10.30.08

Business Methods Patents Die, Are Software Patents Next? (Bilski Full Text as HTML)

Posted in America, Courtroom, Law, Patents at 3:00 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

AN anticipated turning point has finally come. It’s about Bilski, which we wrote about many times before [1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27].

The ruling is in and it is an arrival of wonderful news. Here is the full document [PDF] (original here [PDF]). Here it is as HTML (it’s a large document) and here it is as more complex HTML with thumbnails.

The Stop Software Patents campaign has already commented on the ruling.

The decision on the Bilski case has been published by the specialized patent court in the US (CAFC – Court of Appeal of the Federal Circuit). The judges says that the Bilski case is not helpful to draw the line between what is patentable and what is not in the case of software patents.

A few more notes can be found in Groklaw.

MR. OLSON [For Microsoft]: The ’580 patent is a program, as I understand it, that’s married to a computer, has to be married to a computer in order to be patented.

JUSTICE SCALIA: You can’t patent, you know, on-off, on-off code in the abstract, can you?

MR. OLSON [For Microsoft]: That’s correct, Justice Scalia.

JUSTICE SCALIA: There needs to be a device.

MR. OLSON [For Microsoft]: An idea or a principle, two plus two equals four can’t be patented. It has to be put together with a machine and made into a usable device.

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5 Comments

  1. twitter said,

    November 2, 2008 at 7:33 pm

    Gravatar

    Here’s an older FSF article about this case.

  2. G. Michaels said,

    November 2, 2008 at 9:29 pm

    Gravatar

    twitter, since according to Roy you are not a troll and do not collaborate with him on promoting BN (contrary to what your activities on Slashdot seem to suggest), would you like to comment on why you continue to nymshift and shill your own comments?

    http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=1015749&cid=25604523

    Aside from trying to pretend that people agree with what you say, you posted on that article with four different accounts. Can you explain why you do that? Having conversations with yourself goes against your argument that you use multiple accounts simply to get around the posting limit imposed by your negative moderation by the Slashdot community.

    Would you like to comment on any of the threads and posts linked to from this page?

    http://slashdot.org/~SockDisclosure/journal/214377

    I’m sure that the author of that journal would welcome corrections and clarifications.

    Would you also like to comment on why you multi-post anonymously on articles that criticize BN?

    Note: writer of this comment adds absolutely nothing but stalking and personal attacks against readers, as documented here.

  3. Jose_X said,

    November 3, 2008 at 4:22 pm

    Gravatar

    What about actually interacting with the computer?

    See the comment titled “Depressing” posted on Nov 3rd here http://www.groklaw.net/article.php?story=20081030150903555#comments

  4. Roy Schestowitz said,

    November 3, 2008 at 4:25 pm

    Gravatar

    I get the impression that Microsoft et al will continue to exploit loopholes.

    “[T]hey [the EPO] can’t distinguish between hardware and software so the patents get issued anyway”.”

    Marshall Phelps, Microsoft

    Also see:

    In Huge Shift, Court Ruling Effectively Denies Software-Only Patent Rights
    http://gizmodo.com/5072858/in-huge-shift-court-ruling-effectively-denies-software+only-patent-rights

    The big question is what effect, if any, this decision will have on the current referral of a “point of law” concerning software patents by the President of the European Patent Office (EPO) to the EPO “Enlarged Board of Appeal”, something I wrote about earlier this week. It would be ironic if, at a time when the US courts begin to move away from patenting software “as such”, the EPO started allowing precisely that through a relaxation of its own rules

    http://www.computerworlduk.com/community/blogs/index.cfm?blogid=14&entryid=1452

  5. Jose_X said,

    November 4, 2008 at 12:41 pm

    Gravatar

    Red Hat’s amicus brief has a good introduction covering foss issues http://www.groklaw.net/article.php?story=20080409173618804 . This link can be found here http://www.groklaw.net/article.php?story=20081103134949355 alongside related coverage.

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