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Re: Leadership, effects on Debian and open source community

Will Lowe <harpo@UDel.Edu> writes:
>patent system was set up mostly to allow the patent owner to collect
>money,  so anyone who's taken the trouble to file for the patent is
>obviously going to be looking for cash.

Actually, that's a misconception.  The purpose of the patent sytem is
to encourage inventors to publish their inventions.  The inventor does
get a temporary monopoly (that's his incentive), but eventually
everybody gets to use it.  In the mean time, they get to study the
invention and maybe improve on it.  Overall, it's much better than a
guild system where processes can be kept secret for generations.  

OTOH, software patents are bad because they slow progress instead of
encouraging it.

			- Jim Van Zandt

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