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Re: Tom Tom and Microsofts Linux patent lock-down ..

From: Alan Mackenzie
Subject: Re: Tom Tom and Microsofts Linux patent lock-down ..
Date: Tue, 17 Mar 2009 20:27:27 +0000 (UTC)
User-agent: tin/1.6.2-20030910 ("Pabbay") (UNIX) (FreeBSD/4.11-RELEASE (i386))

In gnu.misc.discuss Hyman Rosen <> wrote:
> Alan Mackenzie wrote:
>> The aggrieved householder submits a complaint, in ordinary English

> Sigh. You just haven't got a clue.

Perhaps not.  Do you have any legal training?

> You're like all those hopelessly naive people who think that it would
> be so much easier if you could communicate with computers in English.

You're trying to refute an inessential detail of my post here rather than
responding to its essence.  Communicating with a court official in
English is in no way analogous to communicating with a computer in

> If both sides want speed, they can go to arbitration.

Often one side wants speed, the other prevaricates.

> Otherwise, law is an adversarial process with each side hiring a
> gladiator to perform as best as possible for his master. It's further
> a system which has accumulated hundreds of years of precedent,

One could also say it has accumulated hundreds of years of cruft.

> which really does matter, and it's further yet a system which is based
> on imperfectly written rules which fail to cover every possible
> situation.  And the lawyers have more to do than focus on one case at
> a time.

> That's why suits are slow.

A historian once told me that in 13th century England, litigants put
their disputes personally to their feudal lord (hence the word "sheriff")
and the matter was settled there and then, and it tended to be fair and
just.  The essentials of the setup then were the same as now, except for
the hiring of "gladiators".  That suggests that the slowness is not due
to the factors you list above.

Alan Mackenzie (Nuremberg, Germany).

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