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Sunday, August 19, 2007

Hack the Gibson #93

Read the reason for these posts. Read Steve Gibson's response.

An other Security Now! episode, an other SpinRite story without mentioning backups. There are few explanations for this, none of which shed a very good light on Mr. Gibson: (a) he doesn't care, (b) the flaws SpinRite repairs are not at all serious, so with or without SpinRite the harddrive would be just fine or (c) there is some dark conspiracy between Mr. Gibson and the hard drive makers. I don't believe in conspiracy theories, but like very much the following quote attributed to Einstein: Two things are infinite: the universe and human stupidity; and I'm not sure about the the universe. But I've beaten the dead horse enough.

Credit to Steve: he mentions that there is no such thing in law as intellectual property, there are only patents, copyright and trademark.

The discussion was well rounded (although Steve did use the term intellectual property once or twice), however there were two points that I feel are important and were not covered or got very little coverage:

Run-through time for patents - I've heard that there is a backlog of at least a year at the patent office, that is, there are at least a year worth of patent material which can potentially affect a given piece of software, however no-one can look at them for the following year. This means that you could everything by the books (search every relevant patent to your field of activity) and still be potentially liable for patent infringement.

The second aspect - which got a little coverage, but not enough in my opinion - is the international aspect. The fact that the USA tries to force its patents on other countries through threats. The fact that it calls countries names when they decide to disregard the American patent system so that they can make an affordable living, other than some kind of moder slaves, but it fails to mention that the USA started itself by disregarding the British patents.


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