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Re: Gates Patents Flipping a Light Switch

From: David Kastrup
Subject: Re: Gates Patents Flipping a Light Switch
Date: Tue, 29 Jun 2004 17:41:59 -0000
User-agent: Gnus/5.09 (Gnus v5.9.0) Emacs/21.3.50

AES/newspost <> writes:

> I believe the Natl Academies are about to publish a report on needed
> improvements (aka reforms) in the patent system that will cite
> similar data -- from $10K to a few times $10K total costs to get a
> typical patent, compared with at least $100K and normally many
> multiples of that to fight or defend against a patent after issue.
> I'll say once again that I find this situation really indefensible.
> For on the order of $10K, and with no other real or potential
> downside to you, you can get the government to issue you a license
> (meaning, in effect, to write a kind of private law on your behalf)
> which
> * gives you *no* new rights to use your own invention that you would
> not already have had simply by publishing your idea;
> * given the competence of the PTO, has a very substantial
> probability of being an unjustified or invalid right;
> * but which nonetheless, once issued, *takes away* from everyone
> else the right to have or use the same idea, unless they're willing
> and able to invest $100K and up -- potentially way up -- in an
> expensive and highly uncertain fight just to try to get themselves
> back to the same state they would have been in before your patent
> issued.

Uh, you are forgetting one thing: everyone else has the option of
buying a licence from you.  That's the whole point in the first place.

David Kastrup, Kriemhildstr. 15, 44793 Bochum

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