[Linux-aus] Seeking nomination

David Newall david at davidnewall.com
Sun Dec 23 07:45:09 UTC 2007

Andrew Pam wrote:
> David Newall wrote:
>> I  believe that Stallman holds that after being bought and sold just once, 
>> software must thenceforth be free; he is wrong.
> That's not my understanding of his expressed views.  What leads you to
> this interpretation?

He said something very like that at an AUUG conference in the '90s.

>> Patent provides a completely different class of protection than 
>> copyright.  Somebody can spend years inventing a really clever 
>> algorithm, and rightly would want to be rewarded for that.
> Scientific discovery is always based on the work of those who have gone
> before, not carried out in a vacuum.  Holding back the entire industry
> for twenty years (!) during which others are almost certain to
> independently rediscover the same techniques but be barred from using
> them seems like a poor outcome for the industry, the public and indeed
> for software developers, who surely rely heavily on existing algorithms
> even when they have discovered patentable algorithms themselves.

Yes, it does.  That's an oft repeated criticism with patents, be they 
for software of hardware.  I hope nobody will hold flaws in the patent 
system against me!  I promise that I don't make the rules.  :-)

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