intellectual property

Key House committee looks at abusive patent litigation

patent reform

In the latest evidence of the growing recognition that our patent system needs reform, last week the House Subcommittee on Courts, Intellectual Property, and the Internet held an informative and well-attended hearing on "Abusive Patent Litigation".

House Judiciary Committee Chairman Bob Goodlatte set the tone for the hearing: » Read more

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Making commercial open source software

fortune cookie

I recently blogged about making open source software, and the high level steps for how to think about the process. We started with the need for software to seed the discussion, the need for clear motivation as to why to publish as open source software, and then the structural requirements to build a community (license choice, collaboration platform or forge, and governance considerations). » Read more

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The new software hygiene: Declare a license or risk losing participation

desire path

I had the privilege of working with David Tilbrook almost 25 years ago. He was the first person with whom I ever worked that clearly articulated proper software construction discipline for collaborative endeavours and captured a summary of it under the title, Washing Behind Your Ears: Principles of Software Hygiene.

» Read more

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Open Source for America asks U.S. government to "Free the Code"

Open Source for America logo

Open Source for America launched a petition Thursday to "Free the Code," an effort to encourage the U.S. federal government to release custom-developed, taxpayer-funded software as open source by default.

"Free the Code is an initiative to start a national conversation on taxpayer investments in software and information technology," said John Scott, co-chair of Open Source for America's steering committee. "Specifically, we’re interested in how publicly-funded software code developed by the government, which isn’t already covered by a proprietary license, should be made available to the wider public."

» Read more

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5 Questions with David A. Wheeler

5 Questions

Meet David A. Wheeler. He's a Research Staff Member for the Institute for Defense Analyses (IDA) and a well-known speaker, author, and expert on open source software and security. He helped develop the Department of Defense's open source software policy and FAQ and has written other guidance materials to help people understand how to use and collaboratively develop open source software in government. He has a Ph.D. in Information Technology, an M.S. in Computer Science, and a B.S. in Electronics Engineering. We hope you enjoy getting to know David. » Read more

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Pinterest and copyright: Why you should keep sharing--and keep pinning

Pinterest logo

Pinterest is a social site for image sharing around themes that launched in closed beta in March 2010. As the site proceeded through an invite system and finally registration requests, it gained a considerable following and was one of Time's "50 Best Websites of 2011." In January 2012, it drove more referral traffic to retailers than YouTube, Google+, and LinkedIn combined and became the fastest site to ever break 10 million unique visitors. As its popularity increases, so have concerns about whether its users aren't just sharing their favorite things, but engaging one another in the web's largest copyright infringement platform. » Read more

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ACTA's back

ACTA's back

Technology issues are now a matter for citizens of the internet and not just big corporations.

Now that the US bills SOPA and PIPA have been put on ice, attention has returned to their parent, an international treaty called ACTA. I've written extensively about ACTA before, but in summary it is an international treaty that has been secretly negotiated to ensure as little input as possible from the citizens of any country. » Read more

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What's not wrong with PIPA and SOPA

What's not wrong with PIPA and SOPA

Here's one list purporting to be the "10 Major Companies Which Are Supporting SOPA/PIPA" – Philip Morris, Rolex, Dolce & Gabbana, Adidas, U.S. Chamber of Commerce, Ford Motor Company, Sony, Wal-Mart, World Wrestling Entertainment, Electronic Art – Notice something about them?<--break-> » Read more

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The well-field system: Open source 30 centuries ago

The well-field system: Open source 30 centuries ago

Where does open source come from? » Read more

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What's on the blacklist? Three sites that SOPA could put at risk

What's on the blacklist? Three sites that SOPA could put at risk

Proponents of the latest disastrous IP bill, the "Stop Online Piracy Act" (SOPA) insist it only targets the "worst of the worst:" so-called "rogue" foreign websites that profit from pirating U.S. intellectual property. But the broad definitions and vague language in the bill could place dangerous tools into the hands of IP rightsholders, with little opportunity for judicial oversight. One very possible outcome: many of the lawful sites you know and love will face new legal threats. » Read more

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