There is a fundamental problem with patents in the United States.
It is us.
By that I mean all of us: the companies and people who directly interact with the patent system, the media that reports on those interactions, the analysts and experts who inform the media, and finally the large, active, and vocal readership that we try and service with our reporting.
Patents are a hard problem. I’ve had to advise most of the startups we’ve funded about them, and despite years of experience I’m still not always sure I’m giving the right advice.
One thing I do feel pretty certain of is that if you’re against software patents, you’re against patents in general. Gradually our machines consist more and more of software. Things that used to be done with levers and cams and gears are now done with loops and trees and closures. There’s nothing special about physical embodiments of control systems that should make them patentable, and the software equivalent not.
Source: Are Software Patents Evil?
[The PVSA] force[s] cruise ships going from one US city to another to either stop at what is called a “far foreign port” (ie., outside of North America), or to stop at a foreign port within North America before returning to the American port of embarkation. Thus, a cruise ship cannot start in Los Angeles and end in San Francisco unless it stops in Tokyo or Lima first. But it can start in Los Angeles, go to San Francisco, then later end in Los Angeles, as long as it stops in Ensenada, Mexico or Victoria, British Columbia first.
Provisioning is what ISPs call the amount of Internet backbone capacity they buy per subscriber. This number is always less than the amount of bandwidth we think we are buying because most of the time Internet connections aren’t used at all and ISPs count on this to keep costs under control. If you are buying an 8 megabit-per-second connection from your ISP, he in turn provisions you with around 50 kilobits-per-second of backbone. This data arbitrage is part of what makes being a broadband ISP so profitable.
and his follow-up article:
The fact is there’s class warfare taking place between big and small business not just on the Internet but everywhere.
In the conflict between big and small I tend to come down on the side of small. We’re recovering from the worst recession in a generation and big companies aren’t doing a damn thing to help. They don’t pay taxes, they don’t create jobs, they don’t spend money, and as a result the economy is under-stimulated. Large U.S. corporations have restructured themselves to avoid taxation, they see their primary function as increasing productivity which means decreasing employment, they have their highest profits ever and are sitting on $2 trillion in cash that they aren’t going to spend.
I’d encourage any readers to check out out the longer, better thought-out comments questioning the demographic, geographic, and infrastructure differences that may or may not account for stuff in here. The second article also shows more clearly the bias of the author.
Is constant stimulation hurting our creativity—and the economy? The “Dilbert” creator on his dull childhood and the power of tedium.
If boredom breeds imagination breeds disappointment, then will the newest generation of never-bored, never-interesting people also be harder to disappoint because they never bother to imagine how much better the world could be?