2035 posts • joined Wednesday 10th June 2009 16:31 GMT
Re: So let me get this straight.
Perhaps that's why we're seeing an increasing amount of patent "submarining": hiding the fact they actually have patents for an essential part of a standard until after the standard is formalized: thus avoiding having to license the patent under FRAND terms and being off the hook by simply saying, "No one asked US if we had patents related to that part of the standard."
I would think a solution would be to hold all parties who agree to the standard powerless to sue if it is found they have a "submarine patent". But then companies may just not agree to the standard, leading to more fragmentation again. It's a hard problem to solve.
Re: positive feedback
"Water vapor feedback is another: warmer earth -> warmer atmosphere, which holds more water vapor, which is a greenhouse gas that causes additional warming."
Thing is, water vapor can makes BOTH positive AND negative feedback. Sure, water vapor is a greenhouse gas, but more water vapor in the atmosphere tends to increase cloud cover. Clouds REFLECT light and heat back into space and thus have a cooling effect.
Re: Submarine patents
The reason patents are by default overly broad is to cover as many possible permutations of the invention as possible. This is to prevent end-runs around the patent by knockoffs who just change a little thing here, a little thing there, then they can say, "This isn't the patented thing! Look, this isn't in the application! It's different!" Patent end-runs were rampant in the late 19th century IIRC.
If you never agree to the T&C at first bootup, or you never allow that to appear in the first place by putting a Linux Live/Install CD in the drive and booting off it from the get-go, I would think, legally, you never agreed to the terms of the transaction, which would render it "no sale". So you should be able to return the software to Microsoft for a refund (under the stipulation that you never agreed to the EULA nor performed an action which could be construed as an agreement) or you should be able to sell it on as a clean, intact software license (unless it's part of a license batch). But again, the actual legal ramifications are unclear since no judge has ever ruled specifically on this issue.
Re: So let me get this straight.
So how do you get innovation out the door without it being knocked off? Got any better ideas?
Re: So let me get this straight.
"Maybe the patent office should start actually reading the patents they issue rather than going the old school route of "oh its more than X pages, patent approved" not to mention theduplicate patents out there."
Got enough money to pay for the extra clerks needed to do that kind of work? The USPTO is notoriously under-budgeted and under-staffed. If trivial patents get through, it's because they can only realistically look at so many at a time. It's like expecting a task that physically requires at least six hours labor to be done in two--with half as many people as you would normally need.
Re: Quarantine in the security gatehouse.
I'm surprised they didin't foil camera phones by scattering infrared LEDs at key points around the site. IR emitters are typically invisible to us but quite visible to camera phones.
Re: I forgot to mention
Thing is, Microsoft is learning from the consumer end of the history timetable. And what history tells us is that end users don't like to jump hoops. If they can, they'll find shortcuts and end runs around security measures because they just wanna get to work, much like the stove and the TV: turn it on and get going. Security by necessity compromises ease of use, so what do you do when you need to balance the two: secure enough that people can't poke holes in everything, yet easy enough to use that people aren't going to go to pains to...well, poke holes in everything.
Re: "You can predict that the water will boil. "
There's also the rare possibility of it not boiling at all but superheating instead. A smooth-enough pot made of materials that do not dissolve in water at around 100 degrees C combined with distilled water with no contaminants provides no way for steam to nucleate. Result: no boiling...though I wouldn't recommend dropping anything into that water. Superheated water is very unstable.
There can be several reasons for the difference. Localized temperatures can vary depending on the thermometer's position, orientation, etc. Most thermometers used by the weather services are located at specific locations (airports and other airfields are common sites) with specific conditions so as to reduce variations. For example, if your thermometer was on an east-facing window, chances are it'll be hotter early in the day (when the sun's pouring down on it) than in the afternoon (when it's more likely to be in shade).
Also, local highs tend to occur around late afternoon, when the sun's had the most time to "bake" your area. After that, ground and water heat radiation tends to outpace the input from the sun and the temperature starts dropping.
Re: So after x number of years, a drug will come out of patent...
That may well be, but the bribe would have to be significant for something very popular. Otherwise, the drug maker would consider the potential profits from making the generic the better option and turn it down. Not to mention there are multiple drug manufacturers, all who wish to get in on the action. If even one of them went ahead and produced a generic, the whole bribery model would be at risk.
Re: redundancy never works at DCs ?
It suppose it all goes down to cost/tradeoff. Are the sites you serve so mission-critical that any lengthy downtime would be costly enough that they insist on an uptime guarantee? If they pony up enough for the level of service, then you'd be financially (not to mention contractually) motivated to install a fully-redundant system.
In this case, it's just a classic Murphy strike. You have a backup plan, but then the backup plan fails on you. Happened to me in a smaller instance when the UPS on the central computer broke down suddenly on my watch. And in this case, it probably wasn't worth it to have a fully-redundant system. In any event, they informed everyone of the situation and instituted plans the got things back up relatively quickly (a few hours for such a problem I say is pretty decent--we've had worse).
And I wouldn't be surprised if they bypassed the UPS temporarily until a more permanent fix came in. I had to do that for my scenario. Again, there's a risk, but getting the thing back up was considered worth the risk as long as it only ran like this temporarily.
Right, but what if you put a high-internal-pressure environment, like a reactor, in a high-external-pressure environment, like the deep sea? Wouln't it be easier to maintain since there should be less pressure differential (which is the real challenge of pressure containment--vast DIFFERENCES rather than the pressures in and of themselves)?
Re: Trains and Trams
Given that streets are also where kids play and where pedestrians crisscross, a ground-based third rail is a non-starter. Plus roads can have multiple lanes; trains usually travel on single sets of rails.
At least the researchers are honest and point out: yeah, we can do it, but it isn't nearly practical at this time.
"And consider: how much oxygen was liberated by industrial processes that transform oxides into pure metals?"
A lot of the liberated oxygen doesn't leave the smelter. At high temperatures, pure oxygen tends to combine readily with other elements: hydrogen to produce gaseous water or steam, carbon to produce carbon dioxide, and so on. That's why high-oxygen atmospheres have to be very careful with fire hazards.
Re: I use paper maps (AAA is a *good* thing).
Only problem is paper maps have this annoying tendency to grow more inaccurate as time passes. Oh, because roads get built, demolished, resurfaced, restructured. Many a driver has gotten lost because the T-intersection they were supposed to find is now a four-way because the road got extended. Or because the map says take the first on-ramp, not realizing a new onramp was just added in front of that one--going THE OTHER WAY.
Re: He is right the law is ridiculous
No, under the US Separation of Powers, that's the Executive Branch's job. Meaning it falls to the President and his Cabinet.
The Legislature MAKES the law. The Executive ENFORCES the law, and the Judiciary INTERPRETS the law.
Re: So what if they are stockpiling?
"There's always someone willing to do the work both cheaper and with less safety concern."
You know there's a bottom to that race. It's called conscript labor. No wage and no regard for the laborer. How do you beat FREE?
Re: So what if they are stockpiling?
Trouble is, the fair market leans heavily in China's favor. Some of the highest costs of mining are labor and legal compliance. China has an advantage in both of these: it has a labor glut and its environmental controls are lax, both of which lower costs. How would you compete against such an advantage?
Re: With or without prejudice.....
Not in this case.
"Prejudice" in this case means that both litigants are considered to have been placed "in jeopardy" in the trial. This is extremely important because it goes to the 5th Amendments, which basically prohibits a litigant from being threatened by the same case twice (the "Double Jeopardy" prohibition). Now, it may be possible for a higher court to declare that the declaration of jeopardy was unwarranted, but given that he's a judge for a court of appeals, there are only two levels of appeal left: the full panel and the SCOTUS.
Sounds perfectly okay with him since his interest is in patents, which are covered by another bureau altogether. As for keeping him out of patent suits, that may be tricky if at least one of the parties involved wants him to preside. They'd just have to find a way to file the suit in his district.
Re: How long for?
You mean like ACTA...which got so much bad press that the European Parliament decided to stake it through the heart, burn it, douse it in holy water, and bury it 17 feet deep head-first before the courts caught wind of it? Treaties are only good if they can be ratified. The ratification process is usually very tough (in the US, it requires a 2/3 majority of what is now a tightly-divided Senate; good luck there).
Re: It gets worse..
OnLive may be a hit with people with underpowered computers, but more serious gamers know the pitfalls and stick to dedicated machines. So do the resale-conscious (people who like to send their software both ways) who realize OnLive's terms amount to a rental, not a purchase.
And you're right about time-limited agreements, but those amount to leases, which normally have to be bound in a contract. Such a contract has to fulfill certain obligations before they become legally binding, which is why most are done on pen-and-paper, in case there is a dispute and the case goes before a court. Furthermore, in a lease, the provider usually has to reciprocate in some way in exchange for the agreement, such as a guaranteed level of service, otherwise the LESSEE can challenge the contract.
Re: It gets worse..
What about software that isn't cloud-friendly, such as games, multimedia software, and other timing-sensitive or media-intensive software that make it less suitable for moving to the cloud?
And even that could be challenged on the ground that you're downloading and executing software on your machine (OnLive can get away with that kind of wording because it's a full-on cloud service--with all the pitfalls). The original ruling of Vernor v. Autodesk in 2008 (which was later overturned for outside reasons--namely, Vernor's copies were stolen, not legitimately purchased) basically went, "If it looks like a sale and transacts like a sale, it's a sale...and subject to the Copyright Act." The only way they can alter that is by altering the actual transaction into a lease contract, with terms and limits and so on. Thing is, leases typically require written contracts and pen on paper (on both sides) since such contracts can and sometimes do get challenged in court, and the judge will want the contract itself for study.
Re: What about eBooks and music?
The ruling could perhaps be extended to cover all digital products, including ebooks and music. But since no one's brought a case concerning them before the court, there's no hard-and-fast rule.
So, two words: Stay Tuned.
But the thing is, the court's ruling is that (1) the license is ITSELF a salable good, and (2) T&C agreements cannot abridge guarantees specified by the law such as the right of resale as described by the exhaustion/first-dale doctrine.
Games will be an interesting battleground since it's one field of software where the cloud is handicapped--timing is sensitive, so the inevitable round trip lag affects performance, plus it's graphics-heavy and so can put a strain on bandwidth.
But the retailer already has that power as possessor of the book. It's called a MARKDOWN. Thing is, even with markdowns, some things don't sell, so it's either return the book (or at least its cover) for at least partial credit or you write the whole thing off. Usually, the tipping point is the credit rate for the book. If the seller can't sell the before without marking it down to the return rate, they'll just return the book.
Re: Why are we talking about games ???
And many of them can be legally restricted by actually being leases or hire-purchase agreements: legally-binding (meaning ink on paper) contracts with terms and conditions. They provide the software and service for it (usually including upgrading) for a set length of time, but you have to return the software at the end if you don't extend the agreement.
Re: e-book licences
I think the big reason for the move away from DRM lies in the ePub format. ePub is XML-based, and the .epub file is a .zip file with different clothes. The currently-recognized system for DRM is too easy to undo, and IIRC the ePub format makes it rather difficult to try something more robust without breaking all the e-Readers currently on the market.
Re: It might have ramifications.
"It would certainly help people who got conned into buying things like DNF to recover some of the money they wasted."
Hey, some of us liked the game. Sure, it was cheesy as hell, but that was the whole bloody point. It's part action shooter, part parody and part "Take That!" at pop culture. Seen in that light, it's pretty entertaining. And at the least, many of us waited so we didn't buy the game at full price.
Don't be so sure.
As someone already said, the patent was originally filed twelve years ago, in 2000. This was before the iPhone (or even Android) even existed. And also long before Google's current search mechanism, so that may be at least part of the reason the judge says Apple has a case: she's saying, "Not early enough. Apple had this patent filed twelve years ago." And because the tech wasn't capable of being monetized until recently, Apple can't be jerked for not enforcing the patent until recently.
It might have ramifications.
Suppose someone takes this argument and tries to sue Valve (or another online games distributor) for not allowing resale of their downloaded games. And suppose this case emboldens potential litigation in the United States?
Re: Is this a mouse incorporating a USB hub then?
Not the mouse. It's too mobile. However, I personally possess a keyboard with a USB hub on it (two ports), and the mouse is attached to it. Kinda makes you miss the days of daisy-chain buses. But this is the next best thing. I'd attach headphones to it, but it's high-draw and not suitable for a bus-powered hub.
Re: <gasp!> Really?! <shocked!>
Yes, I'm American, and yes I was serious. Think Murphy's Law and the Foolproof Folly. Whatever can go wrong will go wrong, and nothing is foolproof enough to withstand a better fool. If you're gonna cool your hand (and I have personal experience with sweaty hands trying to handle devices on a hot summer day), do it safely.
BTW, as to the subject of the mouse, perhaps that mouse was trying to cool the fingers, which would make sense since sweaty fingertips may slide off the mouse buttons without clicking them.
"I'm sure thats the case , but you wouldn't let those sorts of people near critical systems in the first place. They're the ones cleaning the boots and the bogs."
But what if that's all you got? So it's either put these people to work or you got to explain to John Q. Taxpayer why you're sitting on a billion-dollar paperweight (IOW, sink or swim). And rolls on the slide as college grads head for the private sector and drafts are political suicide.
"if thats the only option you've got then its better than nothing. Its certainly better than using a consumer OS which is quite happy to run any old shit it finds on a USB stick as soon as its plugged in!"
That's the thing. That option isn't really an option. One leak and you're done: a task easily accomplished with a competent spy or other insider. Then you're back where we are now, only worse off because proprietary systems are harder to rejig: being by definition custom jobs. And we know what happens with old custom-designed software: it becomes both obsolete and so expensive to replace that the budget basically forces you to put up with it.
Re: Heat pumps aren't that efficient
Hell, 3;1 is still 3:1, a sore sight better than even money resistance heating. And in addition, some heat pumps can reverse, meaning they can cool as well as heat depending on the time of year. Less equipment to buy.
Re: You forgot breeding
"2) mention how organic food (which your host/ess will almost certainly go on about as if it was made from gold) can feed 4 billion people, wait until they go "so what" before telling them the population of earth is around 7 billionish"
And if they blink at you and go, "Yeah, so? Too many people on the planet, then. We need fewer of them."
Sure, waste is waste, but the funny thing about waste is that attempting to clean up the waste CAN result in even more waste. Just as we inevitably dispense waste byproducts in the course of our daily lives (our bodies won't let us "hold it in"), so to will any form of community end up with some degree of debris. At some point, efforts to reduce this amount will only end up using as much (or even more) stuff than you're putting in, so at some point you have to just step back and say, "You know what? Wasters gonna waste" and just abandon what's left as inevitable.
Re: Hardly a new idea.
It's my understanding that terrestrial transmitters can employ different, more-reliable timebases. American transmitters, for example, can rely on the NIST radio time beacon for a timebase. This is the timebases used for the clock signals stuffed into the VBI of American PBS stations, IIRC. Consumer devices can also tune into the NIST signal. In England, you have the MSF time beacon which performs the same role. Various other time beacons exist in the western world, and even China and Japan keep a time beacon running. In addition, terrestrial stations can employ terrestrial networks to help calibrate their clocks.
The thing and others like it is designed to fit into the headset port on top of the iPhone. And unlike the dock connector, it's pretty well standardized out of necessity, so the thing DOES work on Android phones, and Square DOES offer an Android version of their software. The magstripe data is read in via the microphone connector, which the software then interprets.
Yes, you CAN patent minimalism if it's novel and practical. If you don't believe, believe that one of the most lucrative patents in US history was for a single piece of metal wire: the "Gem" paper clip.
Re: We need to invent light switches!
I have. And last I checked, any light transformer is located at the connection to the mains, as they're designed to take on the same wires as a standard incandescent light base. It's the transformer that then feeds the low voltage to the lights themselves.
So when you flick the switch, you're engaging the transformer, which in turn kickstarts the light. Similarly, cut the switch, you cut power to the transformer, so there's no way it can draw power while it's off (unless they can demonstrate how a transformer can draw mains current across an open circuit). In any event, those transformers only draw extra power only during the startup phase. Once it's maintaining, it's a rather efficient system. I once heard that switching on and off constantly was also the best way to go for such fixtures, since the switch-on would only consume the same amount of power as having the light steadily on for around 23 seconds or so.
Totally useless for gamers. They still have to be able to move their digits to click the buttons. A dip in liquid nitro is known to have deleterious effects on joint mobility. And as ice water would not be advised in an electrical environment, perhaps the best course would be dry ice covered in some insulation so that you don't get frostbite on contact?
Re: Data based science?
There's observations and then there's observations. Then again, correlations do not necessarily imply causality. Take a close look at Japan's east coast for a feel of where observed facts can go wrong because they don't provide enough data to account for the possibility of extraordinary events. California builders faced the same problem historically until recent stronger earthquakes gave them more hard fact with which to account for stronger events in future.
"If they manufacturers really want a sales boom they need to develop mainstream glasses free 3D."
Which likely isn't going to happen due to physics issues. Basically, unless your television produces an actual light FIELD rather than a flat image, there's little that can be done to alter their characteristics to allow for stereoscopic vision without (a) resulting to glasses of some sort or (b) limiting the viewing angle so much only one, maybe two people can enjoy it. If you still think it's possible, ask me how a TV would respond to a person lying on their side, their eyes vertical--or better yet, someone watching the set upside-down in a fit of boredom.
Re: Telly upgrade
Not mentioned is that many of them are designed so you can mount them on the wall if you want. Now, this introduces the issue of where you put the various media boxes associated with the TV, but that can usually be remedied with a simple shelf nearby, and the end result is more floor space, so there can be some aesthetic considerations as well.
Re: Its and it's
To clarify, the plural of "it" isn't "its" but "them". And like "it", "them" has a completely different, apostrophe-free possessive:: "their".
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