Patent infringement
Patent infringement

Patent infringement

Patent infringement

The patent system is an attempt at helping the inventors of new 'ideas' to avoid being faced with of moral dilemmas

Patents - a good or, a bad thing ?
If a new 'idea' (a mechanical device, product, system, process, software, method etc.) presents its inventor with a money-making opportunity - does the inventor keep the new 'idea' a secret ?
Of course ! Keep it a secret and get on with making money out of it or, because of it ! What if telling everyone about the new 'idea' would greatly benefit mankind in some way - is it still right to keep it a secret ?
Should a cure for a terminal illness only be available to those who can afford to pay to receive the cure ? Should the inventor of such a cure keep it a secret or, be 'allowed' to keep it a secret ?
Patents - a weapon ?
The patent system is an attempt at helping the inventors of new 'ideas' to avoid being faced with this type of moral dilemma - how ? It allows inventors to go public with legal protection.
Anyway, that's the general idea, but increasingly, patents have become weapons in the armoury of duelling competitors - a tool that can be used to stop or, fend off a close rival in the same market.
Then, there's the dirty business of patent trolls. The owners of patents who aren't interested in making anything, except money by extracting it from those who infringe their patents.
Patent infringement

Patent infringement

Patent infringement

Are wireless routers going to get a 'tad' more expensive for the end user ?

Patent infringement
08-10-2011
Steve Jobs, co-founder of Apple computers, died on Wednesday this week and it's something that I feel I should mention on our web site.
I've never owned an Apple product or, used one of their services and I haven't really taken an interest in Apple or, Steve Jobs, but having read Steve Job's Obituary on the Guardian website, I feel a certain admiration for him and what he has achieved in the computer industry: Steve Jobs 1955 - 2011 R.I.P.
Steve Jobs is listed as either primary inventor or, co-inventor in 338 US patents or, patent applications and relied on the American patent system to protect his inventions, and as an inventor who manufactured things, he is a good example of the type of person who the American patent system should protect.
The patent system, as far as I understand it, is there because it encourages individuals, companies and organisations, to invent and discover new things in the knowledge that they can protect their inventions. Research and development costs money ! What's the point if someone can just come along and steal your new idea or, invention ?
Patents can be sold or, acquired with the purchase of a company and this year has seen what can only be described as a patent gold rush with big players like Apple, Microsoft and Google acquiring thousands of patents for billions of dollars.
Why, all of a sudden, is there a rush to acquire patents ?
Well, patents protect inventions, but they have other uses too. They can also, be used to stifle competition. A good example of this is the Apple versus Samsung legal battle that is currently taking place in many different Countries.
If you own the right patents, you can stop your competitors from using the ideas that the patents cover and, if your being sued by someone who is trying to stop you from violating the rights awarded to them under a patent, you can acquire other patents and use them to protect yourself.
Patents are used to protect inventing manufacturers, but they can also be acquired and used by people who don't manufacture or, intend to manufacture anything at all, but why ?
If you own a patent covering something that is being used by lots of people, companies and organisations who are infringing the rights afforded to you under the patent, you can ask them to stop or, ask them for a licensing fee to continue with their use or, threaten to sue them if they don't comply. In other words, you can make some money !
Innovatio IP Ventures LLC, based in Delaware, is one such company. Unbelievably, they own patents that they claim allows them to stop anyone from using wireless internet - gulp !
They began to issue patent infringement claims in March this year and started their campaign by notifying coffee shops and restaurants who are offering free wi-fi internet access. This month, they have been targeting hotel chains who are offering a similar service to their customers.
Innovatio's lawyers (Chicago-based law firm Niro, Haller & Niro) are 'asking' for a one-off licensing fee in the region of £1,500 - £2,000 from each of the businesses who they say are infringing their client's patents and who, according to them, shouldn't be offering wi-fi internet access to their customers.
Apparently, some of the businesses have already paid the licensing fee, but others with hundreds of locations, have refused to pay and some have contacted the manufacturers of the equipment that they are using.
Motorola is one of the companies who has been contacted by worried clients and they, in conjunction with Cisco, have retaliated with a law-suit of their own.
The lawyers have said that at the moment they don't intend to pursue home wi-fi internet users, but this is definitely one to watch and if there are any further developments, I will report back.
Why do I get the feeling that suddenly, wireless routers and wireless internet are going to get a 'tad' more expensive for the end user ?
Patent infringement
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Patent infringement