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Re: about software patents

* Miriam Ruiz:

> Does anyone know how this affects us -if it does- and if it might
> change anything for the packages and programs that have problems with
> software patents? Might there be any consequences out of this -even
> though it is somehow USA-specific- or is it just blog noise?

I think that we care (to some extent) about device makers who want to
ship devices with Debian preinstalled.  This means that we are still
affected by a more restrictive interpretation of patents which can be
infringed by software implementations (that is, more restrictive than
"pure software/source code can constitute infringement", like "a
specific combination of program and hardware can infringe a patent").

A large part of the discussion of the Bilski decision seems to focus
on software as pure thought-stuff, which is true until you actually
start to use the thing on real hardware which is firmly rooted in the
real world (as anybody can attest to who's suffered from hardware
failure).  The decision probably puts an end to the patentability of
software as pure thought-stuff, but it does not say much about the
applicability of patents to combinations of software and machines
(quite the contrary, look how the Diehr case is cited favorably).

I think that it might have become much easier to make the case against
software-infringeable patents, but the battle is far from over.

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