I just noticed on a recent email from our “friends” at FFII that the writer’s signature line contained this absurdity:

“Data Processing is Not a Field of Technology”

A definition of technology” is the science of the application of knowledge to practical purposes; applied science. What could be more applied science than data processing? One could argue that it is not a pure science, in the sense of mathematics or physics, but I doubt that anyone could seriously argue it is not applied science.

Last night, I watched a TiVo’ed NOVA program last that recounted the controversy over the Piltdown Man, a hoax about the “missing link” that was perpetuated for 40 years. Many prominent scientists staked their reputations and much of their career studying the Piltdown Man, only to find out later that it was a hoax of monumental proportions.

This story shows how even the most scientific and allegedly objective minds of the day can be misled. They were misled because the evidence was presented in a way that fit what they expected. They heard what they wanted to hear, and nothing more.

I think the same thing is happening with the no-software-patents movement. There is a group of people who are blinded by their unquestioned belief that patents are bad, and they fail to see the big picture.