Coffeehouse Thread

238 posts

Tit for tat?

Back to Forum: Coffeehouse
  • User profile image
    cbae
  • User profile image
    MasterPi

    Did you mean to post the more recent link?

  • User profile image
    GoddersUK

    Really, other than lawyers, whose interest do these lawsuits serve?

    The present invention includes a mobile device which provides the user with the ability to schedule a meeting request from the mobile device itself. The mobile device creates an object representative of the meeting request and assigns the object a global identification number which uniquely identifies the object to other devices which encounter the object. In addition, the mobile device in accordance with one aspect of the present invention provides a property in the object which is indicative of whether the meeting request has already been transmitted. In this way, other devices which encounter the meeting request are capable of identifying it as a unique meeting request, and of determining whether the meeting request has already been transmitted, in order to alleviate the problem of duplicate meeting request transmissions.

    I mean, what's innovative about that? How's it an invention?

    "Big database of meetings; each has a unique primary key; one of the properties of each entry is whether or not it's new". And it took 7 employees to "invent" that... 

     

  • User profile image
    cbae

    , GoddersUK wrote

    Really, other than lawyers, whose interest do these lawsuits serve?

    *snip*

    I mean, what's innovative about that? How's it an invention?

    "Big database of meetings; each has a unique primary key; one of the properties of each entry is whether or not it's new". And it took 7 employees to "invent" that... 

    It sounds like it's the use of a GUID as the PK so that meeting requests can be originated from remote devices themselves instead of from the server. Is it a legitimate "invention"? I suppose so. Is it worthy of a patent? IMO, no less worthy than most design patents for ornamental design are. At least this is a utility patent.

  • User profile image
    Blue Ink

    @GoddersUK: agreed, it sounds silly these days, but if you remember what "mobile devices" looked like in 1998, this was science fiction.

    Which just proves that patents in the IT industry need a much shorter expiration date.

  • User profile image
    Bass

    No one is really winning in the end. There is no winners if everyone sues the crap out of each other.

    Just think about how much patent lawyers cost. This money spent fighting lawsuits is being redirected from engineers in ALL of the affected companies. And if you aren't some big company with a patent ICBMs of your own, you are f**ked.

  • User profile image
    cbae

    , Bass wrote

    No one is really winning in the end. There is no winners if everyone sues the crap out of each other.

    Just think about how much patent lawyers cost. This money spent fighting lawsuits is being redirected from engineers in ALL of the affected companies. And if you aren't some big company with a patent ICBMs of your own, you are f**ked.

    An interesting side effect is that patents and lawyers actually increase the value of the work product of engineers (albeit for a smaller number of engineers since money is being diverted to lawyers), whereas FOSS, if implemented without claims of infringement, actually works to devalue the work product of engineers.

  • User profile image
    Bass

    , cbae wrote

    *snip*

    An interesting side effect is that patents and lawyers actually increase the value of the work product of engineers (albeit for a smaller number of engineers since money is being diverted to lawyers), whereas FOSS, if implemented without claims of infringement, actually works to devalue the work product of engineers.

    I don't really agree with that. FOSS offers great opportunities for innovation and entrepreneurship. Instead of reinventing the wheel everytime I want to make something, I can build on what has already been created in the past. Also, without FOSS, Apple might not exist and certainly not Google. Who would want that?

    Oh...

     

  • User profile image
    cbae

    , Bass wrote

    *snip*

    I don't really agree with that. FOSS offers great opportunities for innovation and entrepreneurship. Instead of reinventing the wheel everytime I want to make something, I can build on what has already been created in the past. Also, without FOSS, Apple might not exist and certainly not Google. Who would want that?

    Oh...

    It's great for companies that want to reduce developer head count or not pay for software at all.

    Great for entrepreneurship when you're trying get a piece of an existing market. Terrible for individual developers.

    Oh, and where's the source code for Google's search engine? I'm sure the folks running Bing would love to see it. You know? Innovation and entrepreneurship and all...

  • User profile image
    Bass

    @cbae:

    Do you know what is terrible for individual developers? When people who don't write a single line of code make tens of billions off our hard work. Call it jealousy if you like, but there is absolutely no rational reason why people should be that rich. Especially when so many people are poor.

    I remember doing the math awhile back and Microsoft could pay their developers $600k each and still turn a profit. Where is that money going? Increasing the head count?

    But anyway, I don't really subscribe to the broken window fallacy of software development. I'm not going to go to work and spin useless code all day so I can get a paycheck. I want to to advance the state of technology. Ultimately, we exist to advance the state of technology to the point where no one has to work for a living at all.

    And we aren't going to get there if every time anyone wants to start a new idea they have to start from the very beginning. That's is a massive, almost criminal waste of time. And nobody (except maybe you) wants to wait for some software monopoly to do things, and complain about their strategy you can't control not going the way you want ad infinitum. That would be a nightmare, not a healthy "industry".

    FOSS is the best thing to happen to the technology industry. Almost every notable startup, big and small within the last decade leveraged FOSS to build their business. It's the leg up that they needed to be competitive. And quite frankly that had led to a lot of great opportunities for me.

  • User profile image
    cbae

    , Bass wrote

    @cbae:

    Do you know what is terrible for individual developers? When people who don't write a single line of code make tens of billions off their hard work. Call it jealously if you like, but there is absolutely no rational reason why people should be that rich. Especially when so many people are poor.

    I remember doing the math awhile back and Microsoft could pay their developers $600k each and still turn a profit. Where is that money going? Increasing the head count?

    What Ballmer's made from Microsoft stock pales in comparison to the countless billions of dollars made by ISVs, third-party software companies that produce Windows software, and IT consultants who write custom software for businesses who use Microsoft products.

    If you're going to have a bug up your a$$ about something like this, you should be pi$$ing on Steve Jobs' grave for making billions while never having written a single line of code nor having never assembled a single iPad himself while sweatshop workers in China commit suicide.

    But anyway, I don't really subscribe to the broken window fallacy of software development. I'm not going to go to work and spin useless code all day so I can get a paycheck. I want to to advance the state of technology. Ultimately, we exist to advance the state of technology to the point where no one has to work for a living at all.

    And we aren't going to get there if every time anyone wants to start a new idea they have to start from the very beginning. That's is a massive, almost criminal waste of time. And nobody (except maybe you) wants to wait for some software monopoly to do things. That's not a healthy "industry".

    FOSS is the best thing to happen to the technology industry. Almost every notable startup, big and small within the last decade leveraged FOSS to build their business.

    To what end does this serve? So that every company is on a level playing field technology-wise so that the only differentiator between two companies is how great their customer service is or much money they spend on marketing?

    Sorry, but I love technology too much to have it relegated to a commodity. That's what FOSS seeks to do. Besides, innovation in technology happens fast enough even without 100% free technology transfer. Even with proprietary software, the software industry is still the most "cooperative" that I can think of. How many Ford parts can you use on a Chevy? Whereas, software companies support each other's proprietary file formats all the time.

    If you're going to trumpet the virtues of open sourcing, you should be campaigning for Cola-Cola to open source the recipe for Coke. Imagine all the money that could have been diverted to software engineers if Coca-Cola and Pepsico hadn't wasted all their efforts competing with each other selling sugar water for almost a century.

     

  • User profile image
    AndyC

    , Bass wrote

    @cbae:

    And we aren't going to get there if every time anyone wants to start a new idea they have to start from the very beginning. That's is a massive, almost criminal waste of time. And nobody (except maybe you) wants to wait for some software monopoly to do things, and complain about their strategy you can't control not going the way you want ad infinitum. That would be a nightmare, not a healthy "industry".

    You're joking right? The FOSS world is the king of re-inventing wheels that didn't need it. That's why there are approximately eleventy-billion Linux distributions, it's why there is a new Linux sound stack every other week and why there are probably more FOSS FTP clients than anyone could ever count. Genuinely "advancing the state of technology" actually requires strong leadership and the ability to actually rein in developer egos to get them working in the "right" direction even when they don't necessarily agree with it. It's probably the one thing the FOSS world does far worse than anything else.

  • User profile image
    Bass

    @AndyC

    It's easy to make a Linux distribution, because you can build on an already existing one. I've done many "Linux distributions" in my time using this method. That's the big draw to Linux for me, I can tailor it to my specifications (especially using a meta-distribution like Gentoo) for any given task. Reinventing the wheel would be spending millions (or billions?) of dollars redeveloping all this every time you wanted to put out a new OS. Not spending a afternoon spinning up a new Linux distribution.

    Oh and there is only a small handful of "sound stacks", and they deserve different purposes. At the kernel level there is ALSA which is used by Linux and OSS which is used by *BSD. PulseAudio handles all the high level tasks in userspace, and there is JACK which is more suited for high end DAWs. There might be some other esoteric sound server still in use in some places, but that's pretty much the extent of it.

  • User profile image
    Bass

    Anyway I'm out of this one. Invariably, any FOSS or Linux debate here turns into some epic 6 page waste of time. On top of this, it's totally irrelevant to the topic.

  • User profile image
    DeathBy​VisualStudio

    , AndyC wrote

    *snip*

    Genuinely "advancing the state of technology" actually requires strong leadership and the ability to actually rein in developer egos to get them working in the "right" direction even when they don't necessarily agree with it. It's probably the one thing the FOSS world does far worse than anything else.

    That could also be taken as "Disregard the valid issues developers raise because your ego is the biggest in the room. You are right and they are just resistant to change." Don't forget George Bush, "The Decider", was a leader too...

    No doubt you've got to shed the outliers and move forward but for some they like to paint the picture that lines up with their vision rather than take things at face value.

    If we all believed in unicorns and fairies the world would be a better place.
    Last modified
  • User profile image
    cbae

    , Bass wrote

    Anyway I'm out of this one. Invariably, any FOSS or Linux debate here turns into some epic 6 page waste of time. On top of this, it's totally irrelevant to the topic.

    Having such a debate is a waste of time if you're unwilling to see any drawbacks of the side that you support and unwilling to budge at all on your stance.

    I happen to see the benefits of *some* open source projects--when it's truly about not reinventing the wheel. I participate in many open source projects myself, but these projects build ON TOP of what already exists. These projects don't seek to rewrite everything from scratch with a copyleft license just because some freakazoid who likes to dine on cheese that he picks out of his toes says you should.

    I used to spend many an hour in newsgroups (and CompuServe before that) helping people out by virtually writing their code for them and posting it for all to see and use. Developer newsgroups are now essentially dead, but there are now millions of forums and blog sites where free exchange of code happens countless times everyday. This type of "not reinventing the wheel" sharing of code happens despite our living in a world dominated by proprietary software, and it happens without ever having to force feed a particular type of licensing down everybody's throat.

    I think FOSS has merits, but behind many FOSS projects is some (large) entity that got wealthy peddling its own proprietary software or proprietary hardware or a proprietary service. Everybody is all for FOSS as long as the software doesn't do the same thing as your own bread and butter.

  • User profile image
    AndyC

    @DeathByVisualStudio: There is no doubt that happens too, not every leader ends up being a good one. That does not discount the fact that every genuine advance was pushed by somebody with strong leadership and a vision that may well have seemed flawed to many at the time, but ultimately proved successful. And that's true whether it's the Gates, Jobs, Zuckerberg or Torvalds of the world who are doing it.

  • User profile image
    Maddus Mattus

    @Bass: 100% of income gets spent. That money is used to create jobs and lift people out of poverty. Dollar for dollar creates value.

    Taxing the rich and redistributing the wealth creates two problems; 1. It takes two dollars for every dollar redistributed 2. It does not add value

    So taxation, while neccesairy, increases poverty. While letting people become filthy rich, raises everyones standard of living.

    There is only one system in recorded history that released any civilisation from poverty and that is the free market, I challenge you to find any other.

Comments closed

Comments have been closed since this content was published more than 30 days ago, but if you'd like to continue the conversation, please create a new thread in our Forums, or Contact Us and let us know.