@cbae: another sound set of reasoning. Come back when you have something to bring to the table other then; I am god, you're wrong, kkthxbye!
My sentiments exactly, with a small note that I don't think patents are needed at all.
If a company doesn't innovate, it won't last long. With patents protecting him, he doesn't have to innovate, he can just hang back and watch the cash come in.
@AndyC: ah, my bad, thought you were allowed.
And his fair share is about one billion dollars, because he invented a single button in the centre and rounded corners.
Fact is, we've had major innovation before patents and I think we are stagnating today because of the patent battles. Court battles al over the planet, costing the tax payers and consumers billions of dollars. Resources that could have been put to better use.