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   Re: [xml-dev] Re: Patents on XML software, file formats, schemas,vocabul

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Richard Salz wrote:
> The fundamental difference is that patents have limited lifetime, and have 
> generally (perhaps even universally?) been designed as a trade-off.  For 
> example, as one legal document puts it, the goal is "[t]o promote the 
> Progress of Science and useful Arts, by securing for limited Times to 
> Authors and Inventors the exclusive Right to their respective Writings and 
> Discoveries."

Right, so patents (and copyrights) in the US are meant to serve purely 
utilitarian goals. So the question we should be asking is whether 
patents on software do in fact "promote the Progress of Science and 
useful Arts". It's certainly unclear to me that they do, at least as 
currently constituted. (And if they don't, there's no US constitutional 
basis for having them at all.)



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