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Open Invention Network (OIN) organisation to Acquire Linux Patents

     

engine

2:35 pm on Nov 10, 2005 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Administrator engine is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month



Five large technology companies are joining forces to acquire patents related to open source operating system Linux, in an effort to sustain demand amid the threat of licensing charges.

[infoconomy.com...]

physics

5:26 pm on Nov 10, 2005 (gmt 0)

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Nice. What we need is a way to file an 'open patent'. I.e. the patent would really be owned by no one (and thus couldn't be exploited by anyone) but would have the effect of not allowing anyone else to patent the idea or invention. Also, existing patents could be converted to 'open patents' if they are bought by someone like the OIN.

Leosghost

5:32 pm on Nov 10, 2005 (gmt 0)

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This would appear to be all very laudable ..but why does the presence of Sony make me uneasy ..sort of like letting Dracula look after the blood bank ..even if it's just on the night shift ..

I would love to think they have had a change of heart as regards open source ..but they have way to many lawsuits pending trying to do just the opposite ..and the recent root kit on your CD reported elsewhere here by Digital Ghost is but the latest example ..

Would love to eat my words / missgivings ..but

zafile

8:05 am on Nov 13, 2005 (gmt 0)



IBM joins Open Invention Network, promoting Linux, a pretty new press release at [ibm.com...]

Hurry up and see the IBM homepage at [ibm.com...] . It reads: New Linux venture Open access to patents will enable innovation, growth.

JohnCanyon

7:57 pm on Nov 14, 2005 (gmt 0)

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I am surprised someone like apple is not involved in this as well, since their OS is based on Linux.

Thanks for the article.

AbsintheSyringe

9:23 pm on Nov 14, 2005 (gmt 0)

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I am surprised someone like apple is not involved in this as well, since their OS is based on Linux.

Wrong, it's based on unix.

encyclo

1:31 am on Nov 15, 2005 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member encyclo is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



I am surprised someone like apple is not involved in this as well, since their OS is based on Linux.

Wrong, it's based on unix.

Both wrong ;) Mac OSX is based on FreeBSD [freebsd.org], a free Unix-like OS which shares no patented Linux code whatsoever and is licensed differently. Apple have no vested interest in acquiring Linux patents.

IBM on the other hand are famously "betting the business" on Linux, and have a strong interest in fostering open source initiatives and actively protecting Linux from patent claims.

graeme_p

5:47 am on Nov 20, 2005 (gmt 0)

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Both wrong ;) Mac OS X is based on FreeBSD

It is a bit more complicated than that. It is based on the Mach microkernel and BSD-Lite (details at [developer.apple.com ]). It is related to FreeBSD because it was influenced by FreeBSD and because FreeBSD is also based on BSD-Lite.

shares no patented Linux code whatsoever and is licensed differently

I think you are confusing patents with copyright.

Patents cover ideas (functionality, algorithms etc.) not the particular implementation that is a particular piece of code.

Neither Linux nor the BSD type OSes have copyright problems worth worrying about. On the other hand, as they provide very similar functionality, a patent that affects one is likely to affect the other.

Apple have no vested interest in acquiring Linux patents.

They do because patents that affect Linux will also affect BSD type OSes, including theirs.

vincevincevince

8:31 pm on Nov 28, 2005 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member vincevincevince is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



but would have the effect of not allowing anyone else to patent the idea or invention

I believe that you cannot patent an idea or invention once it has been publically released anyway

I wonder if there isn't a case for a government safeguarding or underwriting linux patents indefinately as being in the public good.

graeme_p

4:32 am on Dec 1, 2005 (gmt 0)

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vincevincevince,

you are right that you can not patent something that has been previously invested by someone else (prior art).

However proving the existence of prior art is quite complicated. Further more someone can still patent something built on top of your unpatented invention (an improvement to it, an invention of their own that incorporates it etc.).

What we could be with is a GPL for patents.

Imagine if TCP/IP had been patented and then licensed on condition that you could not claim at patent on any technology built on it, all those silly patents of the obvious would have been impossible.

 

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