Bilski mis-fired, but now EFF, CCIA and RedHat are asking SCOTUS to pronounce precise limits to patentability of software. Without such limits the courts are being swamped by lawsuits and innovation is being stifled rather than promoted by patents. An appeal to a lower court was declined, so this is an attempt to have the SCOTUS correct the lower court. A decision could have a huge effect.
The lower court does not seem even to understand the meaning of “abstract”:
“The Federal Circuit admitted that “the mere idea that advertising can be used as a form of currency is abstract,” yet found that when that idea would “likely” require “intricate and complex computer programming,” it was no longer abstract. “
Lawyers, “more abstract” is not the same as “concrete”… Sigh…
see H-online – “US Supreme Court asked to review software patents ruling“
Ars has another opinion piece showing that software patents “don’t scale”. That’s true of course. They reproduce pain and suffering geometrically while the world produces lawyers and courts linearly.
I said the same thing for other reasons before: “Patents may have had some use for inventors of devices like machines with a few moving parts but the concept of a patent on hundreds of thousands or millions of lines of code in the software of a smart phone is absurd. It does not scale. It does not scale for the complexity of the device nor for the billions of copies one presumably can sell. After the first million or so, the return on investment is huge and the purpose of patents has been met. The rest is abuse.“