Rozmanith: Using software patents to silence critics
In autumn 2000 TechSearch Inc, a company specialising on acquiring and exploiting patents, sued Gregory Aharonian, a vocal critic of "bad patents" owned by TechSearch, for alleged infringement of one of these "bad patents", US 5253341, the "Rozmanith patent" on compressing data transmitted from web servers. They also accused Aharonian of slandering TechSearch, the patent office and the United States government. But they failed to point out how Aharonian had infringed on their patent. Apparently anyone who operates a web server infringes, and it is up to TechSearch to select victims. Aharonian is the first individual Linux user to be sued for patent infringement.
Aharonian reported in 2003 in his newsletter "Patnews" that he ultimately won the lawsuit against TechSearch.
- (Techsearch attacks Aharonian on Rozmanith patent)
- Gregory Aharonian and Software Patents: Propagating a Disease, Selling a Medicine
- Editor of a regular newsletter called PatNews, dubbed GregNews, with detailed information especially about software patents which should have failed the novelty test. Greg offers services of searching novelty destroying documentation. GregNews strongly opposes any attempt to exclude either algorithms or business methods from patentability. This is because "information is physical", "the universe is made of algorithms", all distinctions between mind and matter are "unscientific" etc, "as witnessed by Einstein, Turing, ..." and demonstrated by the existence of co-design tools. Any process which can be described as "technology" or "applied science" must be patentable and not copyrightable, GregNews insists, and the sorrows with software patents would of course go away if only patent offices had more ressources, so as to become as proficient as Greg in patent busting. Some people have however reported that the "tons of prior art" supplied by G.A. regularly fail to achieve their aim of invalidating stupid patents.
english version 2004/08/16 by Hartmut PILCH