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Re: Microsoft Patents the Body Electric

From: The Ghost In The Machine
Subject: Re: Microsoft Patents the Body Electric
Date: Wed, 23 Jun 2004 20:00:22 GMT
User-agent: slrn/ (Linux)

In comp.os.linux.advocacy, Hamilcar Barca
on Tue, 22 Jun 2004 19:05:02 -0600
> In article <> (Tue, 22 Jun
> 2004 15:04:22 -0700), theodp wrote:
>> On Tuesday, the USPTO awarded Microsoft a patent for its 'Method
>> and apparatus for transmitting power and data using the human body'
>> [2], which covers the use of the human body as a conductive medium
>> (bus) over which power, data and control signals may be distributed.
> Sir Bilious and his minion, the Earl of Blammer, will be fabulously well
> to do.  Just think
>   Earth's population:          5,200,000,000
>   Licensing fee (per body):             $299
>                           ------------------
>                           $1,554,800,000,000
> Of course, there will be body piracy and Microslave may need to lower the
> EULA fees for developing countries, but still!
> Let's hope the Free Human Foundation and the Open Body Initiative design
> some new humans quickly!

Couldn't we claim prior art on this one?  After all, the body Electric
could be referring to Mary Shelley's work _Frankenstein_, or perhaps
just humans in general, which have been in existence (and creating
children) for millions of years -- or 6,000, if one's a Young Earth
Creationist -- either way one's covered, even if one assumes 1200
year lifespans, as copyright is death + 70 and patents are merely 17.

If electric is important one could point to experiments of
the 70's, in which brainwaves controlled a model train, or
"lie detectors" (EEG/ECG-based polygraph units).

See also Stanislaw Lem's _Star Diaries_ (Voyage 21, IINM).

It's still legal to go .sigless.

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