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

From: "Michael Kay" <mike@--------.--->
To: "'Rick Marshall'" <rjm@-------.--->,<xml-dev@-----.---.--->
Date: 7/25/2006 2:29:00 PM
> I don't have a problem. More things patented means more 
> opportunity for wealth.

There are two lines of argument against that.

One is that not all wealth is good. It's not good if it is concentrated in
too small a part of the community (for example, if it all goes to the
lawyers), and it is not good if it is achieved at the expense of other goals
such as the advancement of knowledge.

The second is that more patents does not mean more opportunity for wealth.
Patents are good if they provide the business case for innovation that would
not otherwise happen. That plainly isn't the case for software. In the
software field, patents inhibit innovation and therefore they inhibit wealth
creation.

Michael Kay
http://www.saxonica.com/

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