hi guys. as almost everyone here is related in some way to software development and software development communities, i felt a need to post this here. it is rather important...
in short, software patent directives have been passed by the eu and are now legally usable in whats quite possibly the most corrupt area of i.t and software development. patents are like copyrights, only if you hold a software patent, you can take down ANYBODY who does anything remotely similar to whats filed in that patent. for example, if you hold a patent for the command button, every single application that uses a button of some sort, that being a clickable area of a gui that causes an event to be fired, becomes an illegal infringement of such patents and is taken down.
more info on software patents and there effects can be found here:
i'm posting this here simply as a warning to developers, that the vast majority, if not all, of your software is now illegal unless you own patent to every feature it offers and makes use of!
both microsoft and aol have already started taking software offline, and not just the smaller companies. kde, the leading desktop environment project for linux and unix varients, have been forced to take kopete, there instant messaging system, offline because of such patents.
other software WILL follow, and if a company as large as kde, and as protected by gnu licensing as possible can be taken down within weeks of patent laws being accepted, you can be sure as hell you will be too.
i'm posting this in a number of development communities and all of which link back to the following thread:
http://www.linuxforum.com/forums/index. ... pic=135912
if you have anything to post, it's more likely to be read there than it is here, and any updates, such as links to other software found to be taken offline due to patent infringements, will be posted there only!
please help to fight software patents and keep the i.t industry alive and your role as a developer viable. as kopetes page states, this IS the last chance. this issue has been going on for years now, and the monopolies are still winning.