by Mike Masnick
Fri, Mar 20th 2009 4:35pm
For years, people in the software industry have noticed that patents have become the nuclear stockpiling of the tech industry. Lots of companies feel the need to stock up on as many patents as possible, not for any good reason -- but to have something to scare people off from suing, knowing that they'll get sued right back. This is especially true today, since almost no tech product can be seen as not violating a whole bevy of patents from others. But, of course, when you're dealing with a nuclear stockpiling for deterrence purposes, eventually, nuclear war breaks out. That seems to be happening with the patent lawsuit between Microsoft and TomTom. While there's been speculation that TomTom really can't settle, apparently it can launch the nuclear war. It's now countersued Microsoft, claiming that the company violates a bunch of its patents. And, once again, the only folks who win are the patent attorneys.
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