Subject: IC's patent-pending technology
From: "Lawrence Rosen" <lrosen@rosenlaw.com>
Date: Mon, 25 Sep 2006 14:46:08 -0700
Mon, 25 Sep 2006 14:46:08 -0700
There has been lots of discussion on here recently about software patents,
but not very clear understanding of how they really work in practice. 

 

Since it is safe to do so, and potentially helpful, I'd like to toss the
International Characters patent applications back into this FSB pot to
simmer a bit. They are examples, I believe, of interesting inventions that
can have broad utility and impact many other software technologies. It may
be helpful to understand how such patent claims can be embodied in software
so we can build a licensing regime for such patents that effectively
promotes free and open source software while generating profit from
commercialization. 

 

Here are a few slides that introduce the technology:

www.rosenlaw.com/IC-Technology-Overview.pdf 

 

Please don't confuse this with a business method patent. And we're not
patenting XML! We're patenting very fast and very efficient methods for
processing XML and other character streams. Existing software continues to
work without any risk from our patents. It is only new or modified software
that can benefit.

 

You know by now that International Characters has submitted its patent
applications for review through the Community Patent Review project. That's
the place where we will deal with questions of validity of our patent
claims. We will actively solicit evidence of prior art there because we only
want our valid patent claims to issue. 

 

FSB might instead help us understand how such patent claims (assuming they
are valid) might affect free software businesses. 

 

The one thing that worries me a lot is the resistance that some have to even
learning about good technology for fear that a future patent might hurt
them. Ignorance hurts worse. It leads to some of the silly discussions on
here about how dangerous patents are, and it can lead to a refusal to
implement good technology even when it is available for free. This reminds
me of the fear that some used to have about free and open source software. A
clear paper at the Community Patent Review site should allay your fears that
it might be dangerous for you to learn about the technology in our patent
applications. (See
http://cairns.typepad.com/peertopatent/2006/09/willful_infring.html.) 

 

Larry Rosen



There has been lots of discussion on here recently about software patents, but not very clear understanding of how they really work in practice.

 

Since it is safe to do so, and potentially helpful, I'd like to toss the International Characters patent applications back into this FSB pot to simmer a bit. They are examples, I believe, of interesting inventions that can have broad utility and impact many other software technologies. It may be helpful to understand how such patent claims can be embodied in software so we can build a licensing regime for such patents that effectively promotes free and open source software while generating profit from commercialization.

 

Here are a few slides that introduce the technology:

www.rosenlaw.com/IC-Technology-Overview.pdf

 

Please don't confuse this with a business method patent. And we're not patenting XML! We're patenting very fast and very efficient methods for processing XML and other character streams. Existing software continues to work without any risk from our patents. It is only new or modified software that can benefit.

 

You know by now that International Characters has submitted its patent applications for review through the Community Patent Review project. That's the place where we will deal with questions of validity of our patent claims. We will actively solicit evidence of prior art there because we only want our valid patent claims to issue.

 

FSB might instead help us understand how such patent claims (assuming they are valid) might affect free software businesses.

 

The one thing that worries me a lot is the resistance that some have to even learning about good technology for fear that a future patent might hurt them. Ignorance hurts worse. It leads to some of the silly discussions on here about how dangerous patents are, and it can lead to a refusal to implement good technology even when it is available for free. This reminds me of the fear that some used to have about free and open source software. A clear paper at the Community Patent Review site should allay your fears that it might be dangerous for you to learn about the technology in our patent applications. (See http://cairns.typepad.com/peertopatent/2006/09/willful infring.html.)

 

Larry Rosen