I’ve spent quite a lot of time over the last couple of years playing the patents game, and developed some strongish opinions about it. So I decided to write them up in an article I’ve called
The Patent Cold War.
The current patent system is something of a farce. Almost everybody involved in it knows this, but it’s a game we all have to keep playing because nobody can afford to be the first one to stop.
I suggest two additional changes to the patenting process. These would further ameliorate the problems you have identified: 1. Publication of patent applications immediately upon their filing. 2. Permitting and encouraging public commentary on claims of novelty and non-obviousness in patent applications.
Thanks, Hap – yes, indeed – there definitely needs to be a way for people viewing published applications to leave notes for the eventual examiner… ‘Please take into consideration this publication from 1996’, or ‘The X-Windows system already does this’.