Got annoyed then bored with Advogato some time back. Came back for a look today, wanted to post a comment on Bruce Perens patents article, then found I've been busted back to Observer, so no longer have article posting credentials. Ironic, since observing was precisely what I was not doing. Fickle system.
FWIW, for the last couple of months I've been occasionally writing journal entries on my own web site: very little, I'm afraid, to read there on software -- mostly music, books, movies, recipes, Bill Mazeroski.
Speaking of patents, my pet idea is to throw the defensive patenters into therapy, specifically a program to be called Patents Anonymous (or more likely, just Software Patents Anonymous). This would be an organization that provides automatic cross-licensing to all members, and possibly other services, such as:
- An open, running comment forum on all new software patents.
- Prior art search.
- Clean room tests of originality. (One way to test how original a patent is would be to pose similar problems to other developers, to see how frequently other developers come up with similar solutions. Don't know whether this would have any legal clout.)
- A forum to log ideas that other might eventually patent. (This would allow free software developers to pre-emptively publish notices to foul would-be patenters.)