Another Absurd Software Patent

by on February 15, 2006 · 2 comments

The Electronic Frontier Foundation is challenging Clear Channel’s patent on a system that records an event and produces copies of the recording for distribution at its conclusion. This is, quite simply, an obvious concept. Recording a show is certainly not a new concept, and the idea of doing so quickly, while certainly a valuable enhancement, doesn’t strike me as an “invention” worthy of legal protection. This illustrates an important reason that software patents are almost always obvious: this patent is just a grab bag of distinct features thrown together with some software glue. Recording, real-time editing, and burning, individually, are not difficult or original concepts. Moreover, there are general principles of good software design that make combining these three features into one system straightforward for anyone “skilled in the art” of computer programming.

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