Marking? What marking?

I have heard about of couple of cases this week involving farmers abused by patent owners. I am sure that the lawyers involved looked at this: “Except on proof that the infringer was notified of the infringement and continued to infringe thereafter, in which event damages may be recovered only for infringement occurring after such notice”.
That is from: This Cornell Law Posting
So where on that seed was Pat. nnnnnnnn?
Just saying.
I am not alwyer and do not aspire to be but lawyers and judges are expected to be able to read.

Oh, if the infringer had made best efforts to avoid buying the “falsly unmarked” product, how can he/she be an infringer? Is he/she entitled to compensation for frivolous suit?

Chrome EULA Rant

I went to download Chrome for my Ubutu distribution.  For some reason, I decided to actually read the EULA. I usually let the kitten step on the keyboard until that nonsense goes away.  I would never agree to any of that EULA crap without a lawyer’s advice. In the middle of the EULA was a reference to:

“AVC Patent Portfolio License”

Another license which I, without legal assistance need to understand.  Googling for the phrase gives me a great summary presentation.

Note that the title page provides this warning

“This presentation is for information purposes only.
Actual license agreements will provide the only definitive and reliable statement of license terms.”

In the presentation, on slide 2, second bullet, is “Align with AVC product value chain”

This line reminds me of the moment in my Draft Physical where the doctor says to a line of 20 young men, with their bare toes on a yellow tape line on the floor,  “Bend over and spread your cheeks”.

But do not delay…
First Term: August 1, 2002 – December 31, 2010
Threshold levels to encourage early-stage adoption and minimize impact on lower volume users…
Call now… Operators are standing by… Limited time offer… (Did I pay too much by not waiting for the price to come down?)  Does AVC seem like a scam to you?

Rate Protection on Renewal – royalty rates for specific license grants (except for Internet Broadcast AVC*) will not increase by more than 10% at renewals

This is my absolute favorite because I am a Mainframe Dinosaur.  While the predicted death of the IBM mainframe seems to be long delayed, the mainframe software vendors continue to work to ensure the mainframe’s imminent demise through destructive software licensing conditions.  Dr. Merrill and a few other have the right idea.

I’m with Shakespeare (Henry The Sixth, Part 2 Act 4, scene 2, 71–78)

Software Patents

Patents give an inventor the Constitutionally protected exclusive right to a particular process for altering material or to a device for a specific purpose. The US Patent office has managed to extended this to software. Most of the software patents I have read fail to alter material or fail to be a device.
If I ran the zoo, I would permit any software patent given two conditions: 1) It alters something tangible. A general purpose computer does not count. The software needs to turn on a light, roll a bar of steel, catch a mouse. Not tell a broker when to buy. Not bounce a virtual ball screen. Not make a 2-D movie appear 3-D. 2) All of the source code related to the patent must be published as part of the patent grant. It can be secret up to the moment of grant but after that it is public information just as the patent law specifies that the patent enable the reproduction of the process or art at the expiration of the patent. Only the processes included in the published source code are protected. Different code that accomplishes the same end is not infringing.
We will have to wait a little bit to find out what the Supremes have to say about Bilski.

Les Paul

Les Paul and Chet Atkins
Les Paul and Chet Atkins

When I was in High School, my older brother played guitar and listened to records of guitar players. He especially liked a 45 by Les Paul and Mary Ford – How High The Moon. He played it as the signature song for his pretend radio show.
Les Paul, invented more stuff for musical performance and recording than most people have items in their kitchen.
Les Paul, always the accent, the spark, the zing.
Les Paul, now missed.