Woz Completely Changes Tune On Patent Trolling From Just Months Ago
from the is-that-the-same-woz? dept
I think this lawsuit represents the idea that hey, patents, individual inventors, they don't have the funds to go up against big companies. So he's sorta representing some original investors. And I'm not at all against the idea of patent trolls.... Every tech company is very aware that patents are really the heart of our innovation and invention system and (a) that you have to have your own patent position and you gotta be aware that there might be others.Personally, I was a bit surprised that story didn't get more attention. Woz tends to be so beloved in the parts of Silicon Valley that don't like patents that I thought it would generate some discussion. However... now JJ points us to the news that Woz seems to have done a complete about face on Paul Allen's lawsuits and patent trolling in general, coming out pretty strongly against both. Oddly, neither he nor the reporter covering the story seems to note that just months ago, he was saying exactly the opposite. From the coverage at TheRegister:
"That patent-troll thing," Wozniak, said, introducing his first story. "The other night Paul Allen was speaking at the Computer History Museum and I had four tickets. And I decided at the last minute not to go, because I remembered he's suing all these companies like Apple and Google – but he's not suing Microsoft – because he bought all these patents."Elsewhere he said: "A lot of patents are pretty much not worth that much... In other words, any fifth-grader could come up with the same approach."
From Wozniak's point of view, Allen's lawsuit will not help anyone except Allen and his lawyers. "Well heck," he said, "Paul Allen should be out there investing in companies that are doing something, making products, actually making a new future for the world, and not 'I'm ... going to sue people, and get in bed with the lawyers to make my money.' That's not the right way."
I certainly like this version of Woz better, but I'm sort of at a loss as to how to figure out which is the real Woz. So... what is it? Is Woz happy with patent trolls like Paul Allen, or so upset by them that he won't go see him speak? Will the real Woz please stand up?