Friday, September 22, 2006

Europe's software patent war ignites again Europe's software patent war ignites again

CNET News.com: Europe's software patent war ignites again starts with:
Three political groups in the European Parliament have warned that the possibility of introducing software patents is re-emerging.
As you may or may not know, legally you can't patent software in the EU. You actually can, but it is a lot more difficult there than here, and somewhat akin to the state of patent law in the U.S. when I was gettring ready to sit for the patent bar 15 or so years ago.

I have never quite understood their reasoning when it comes to patenting software. In my experience there is little difference in patenting software and in patenting electronics. This is from personal experience, as that is what I do for a living. It may be a result of some silly idea that software is a result of a couple of geeks sitting in the back room and hacking around. Tell that to Microsoft or IBM, which both spend billions of dollars a year designing and implementing software. And this is really the problem here - the Europeans moan and groan about why their economies are stagnant, and why they can't get on the high tech bandwagon. Even with large state support, they fall further and further behind. And one reason for this may well be that they are at a competitive disadvantage when it comes to software development, since they don't provide as much intellectual property protection as we do here.

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