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From: infi...@falken.detour. net (keine mitleit =?ISO-8859-1?Q?f=FCr?= die merheit)
Subject: Recent Lucent-Cisco patent suit (fwd)
Date: 1998/06/20
Message-ID: <Pine.LNX.3.96.980619210414.342C-100000@falken>#1/1
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---------- Forwarded message ----------
Date: Fri, 19 Jun 1998 16:21:12 -0400 (EDT)
From: Kragen <kra...@pobox.com>
To: clug-u...@clug.org, unix...@dmapub.dma.org, net...@nuclecu.unam.mx
Subject: Recent Lucent-Cisco patent suit

Does Linux infringe upon these patents?

<URL:http://www.cnnfn.com/digitaljam/newsbytes/113527.html>

If so, it could quickly become illegal to distribute it in the US.

Kragen


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From: a...@lxorguk.ukuu.org.uk (Alan Cox)
Subject: Re: Recent Lucent-Cisco patent suit (fwd)
Date: 1998/06/20
Message-ID: <m0ynItk-000aOnC@the-village.bc.nu>#1/1
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Approved: g...@greenie.muc.de
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> Does Linux infringe upon these patents?
> <URL:http://www.cnnfn.com/digitaljam/newsbytes/113527.html>
> If so, it could quickly become illegal to distribute it in the US.

There are probably now in excess of a million so called 'software patents'
cripping US industry. Because the US patent system basically runs without
any checking of any kind US companies file patents on anything that so
much as compiles in the hope they can use it to monopolise a field and
drive competitors bankrupt.

Until the US patent system is reformed to reflect the original intention
of patents - that is to provide reward from true innovation and allow
some monopolistic control in return for guaranteeing the information
discovered by the now patent holder becomes known to all in time then
you can expect an ever more ridiculous array of lawsuits to make US
industry less and less competitive (except maybe in the legal field).

The US patent office regularly grants stupid patents on things like
"setting a bit to 1". Its up to US citizens to reform it. Things like
a shortcut procedure for quashing stupid patents - of the pay $300
filing fee and provide prior evidence without going to court - variety,
and stopping the practice of assessing patent examiners performance
on the basis of number of patents APPROVED would be good beginnings.

Anyway its up to the US citizens to kick their government in the right
direction. "Representation of the people" usually only works when the 
representative is made firmly aware that there is a horde of the represented
right behind him who are going to do serious damage if said representative
doesnt do some representing of the people for a change.

And at the end of the day Cisco wont lose any real money over this, Lucent
wont lose any real money over this. Take the cost of the lawsuit, divide
by the number of products both make, add a distributors mark up, add
sales tax and charge it to the customer. 

Alan


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