Subject: Re: Examples needed against Soft Patents
From: "Stephen J. Turnbull" <>
Date: Wed, 29 Dec 2004 19:59:15 +0900

>>>>> "Russell" == Russell McOrmond <> writes:

    Russell> I believe that health development must be guided by the
    Russell> multiplicity of motivations that are possible in an open
    Russell> collaborative development environment, rather than the
    Russell> very narrow vision possible with pure profit motivation
    Russell> that exists in a closed proprietary development
    Russell> environment.


Do you know what "pure profit motivation" is?  To a _first_
approximation, it is to solve the existing needs.  I'll admit that it
usually picks the low-hanging fruit for which there is a mass market,
and in that sense the vision is "narrow".

The whole point of franchises like patents and copyrights is
precisely to broaden that vision to longer-range projects and niche
markets where you have to capture the whole thing to recover
development costs.

As for basic research and "dreaming impossible dreams, fighting
unbeatable foes", I think it's indicative that Bell Labs and IBM have
each produced more Nobel Laureates (in the sciences) than most
countries.  It simply is not obvious that profit orientation precludes

Yes, there are advantages to openness.  But it is not an "open and
shut" case.

    Russell> FLOSS provides for resource multiplication.

    >> s/multiplication/division/

    Russell> That is your view,

That may or may not be true.  It's irrelevant.  You're preaching to
the choir, Reverend.  Turn around and tell the ****ing congregation to
stop that adulterous behavior, and why, in terms that make sense to

Please note: I support the total abolition of software patents, and
I'm willing to discuss the merits of abolishing patents, period.  I
see no way to achieve those goals if we don't treat pro-patent views
with respect.

Institute of Policy and Planning Sciences
University of Tsukuba                    Tennodai 1-1-1 Tsukuba 305-8573 JAPAN
               Ask not how you can "do" free software business;
              ask what your business can "do for" free software.