Want To Create A Simple App To Tell You Where Someone Is Calling From? You Can't, It's Patented
from the promoting-the-progress-yet-again dept
Except for the patents.
As he started to write the app, he figured he should take a quick look around to see if anyone else had done so... when he came across the fact that someone had written that app, but thanks to a patent threat, it had been shut down. In fact, the patent holder, Cequent, has sued a few others who dared to create such a simple database lookup app themselves. The patent itself describes an incredibly simple database lookup... yet, now no one else is allowed to create such an app.
The purpose of the patent system was to create the incentives for inventors to invent products that likely would not have been created otherwise, in order to help "promote the progress." Yet, when it's being used to prevent an engineer from writing a simple app that could have occurred to anyone, based on a simple database lookup, doesn't it seem like there's a pretty big problem?