Software Patents

What is Software?

One of the comments on this blog suggested that an invention is “software” if it weighs nothing. This is an excellent illustration about how illusory and ill-defined the term “software'”really is.

In the general sense, software may be instructions executed by a processor. However, the “invention” is generally a method or sequence embodied by those instructions. The invention is not the code, but the underlying idea, regardless of the specific embodiment.

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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.

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