Talk about amazing prescience to coming events. Yesterday Mosspuppet ranted on the US Patent office’s asinine actions in granting Facebook a patent for “The Feed” and went on to talk about how it’s bad for business when companies make generalized patents to stifle competitor innovation (video below).
If you’ve ever read the stream of patents that Apple constantly files it’s pretty obvious what is going on. Apple is basically working to patent every idea they have, in most cases things that they have never done and never will do. Just whatever random ideas they have that sound like good ideas. While I think putting patents on your creations is a good idea I think it’s a real dick move to patent an idea you never actually created. Then when somebody come a along and makes that idea a reality you shouldn’t be allowed to take them to court for innovating and creating something never existed.
Abstract idea patents in themselves are pretty bad to begin with; if it doesn’t exist you shouldn’t be allowed to patent it. The “we may do it someday.” argument doesn’t work. I dreamed of airplanes that flew into space full of passengers when I was 5; I shouldn’t be allowed to patent the idea so I could sue Virgin Galactic now.
There’s also the idea of putting a patent on something that is s basic many people have the same idea. Here’s some of the Apple ones involved in the HTC issue from the excellent breakdown at Engadget.
- Patent 7,362,331: Patents transition effect of opening or closing a window in a browser when it moves at a non-linear speed. Most modern browsers do this.
- Patent 7,469,381: Patents the effect of scrolling to the end of a list and having it snap back to the end with a little elastic bounce.
- Patent 5,920,726: Patents controlling the power usage of a device component to save battery power. Every hand-held device in the world does this.
- Patent 5,929,852: I believe this patents using an application to access an online database like most iPhones apps, all Google resources, and many desktop apps developed in the 90’s onward.
One famous Apple patent is the idea of “Multi-touch”; interacting with a screen with more than one input is a basic idea and one that existed before Apple popularized it. But Apple has the patent, and now that more devices have it they want their cut of the income others are making with this basic idea.
In fact one commenter on Engadget pointed out that Apple held off suing other companies using multi-touch for years until they had all established it as a common use and made loads of money off it so as to maximize Apple’s gain when they finally lashed out with their lawyer armies.
In the end all I have to say is that I agree with Walt Mosspuppet. It’s stupid to grant these vague patents and detestable for companies to use them as clubs to beat on competitors that are innovating in the market.
Apple isn’t doing this out of fairness, they’re not doing this because they’re losing money, and they’re not doing this to improve the market for their consumers. It is a purely selfish move to solidify their market lead, and leach money from the companies struggling to compete. And the people who suffer most are the consumers, the innovation in technology, and the free market itself.
Rumors of HTCs future lineup are coming out. I don’t like any of them.
I’m pretty much married to the slide out landscape keyboard. The last 3 phones I’ve ahd all have the same form factor (right now I have an HTC Touch Pro).
The only one that fits this model is the “Tera” which doesn’t have any significant upgrades and actually downgrades the screen the a WQVGA from the VGA screen I have now. Other than the 3.5″ audio jack I can’t see any improvement and only downgrades.
If the rumors don’t improve I may be ditching the physical keyboard and moving to the “Photon” but that’s not much improved over the Touch Diamond 2. Or maybe move to the Android powered “Bravo” although the size makes it seem like a mini tablet and I don’t like the idea of carrying that in my pocket.
Inspired by the unbagging post at Engaget and seeing the massive amount of junk some people carry, I thought I should show people how it’s done.
-Bag was $45 when I was in Japan
-EEE PC 1005HA
-Cannon Wordtank G55
-HTC Fuze (Touch Pro)
-Micro SD card reader
-8GB Thumbdrive (Linux Backtrack)
-4GB SuperTalent Pico Thumbdrive *on keyring*
-4GB SD card
I got the bag out of necessity while in Japan, it expands to hold about 2 Chemistry textbooks in the main pocket and has two external pockets for small items. The bag holds everything with expansion room for impulse CD or book purchases. I can also easily fit the 1005HA’s power adapter, my digital camera, and a bottle of water if I’m going to be out longer than usual.
EEE PC+USB Cable+HTC Fuze= Broadband speed internet anywhere I go. I can actually use bluetooth instead but this way the phone’s battery doesn’t die in 2 hours of 3G. In Las Vegas I streamed a full episode of MST3K over Orb via 3G because the hotel WiFi was so lethargic.
The Wordtank is for impromptu studies. And replaces the 3 paper dictionaries I carried around before.
The towel was a gift while in Japan and is a must have during the summer. As the HHG2G says, “a towel is about the most massively useful thing you can have”. Think “hot, humid, summer day” while crossing Tokyo on foot; having something to mop your brow keeps you from looking like you just ran a marathon. Also good for cleaning sweaty fingerprints off the phone and laptop and a multitude of other things.
The headphones are just emergency use for the laptop. If I’m listening to music on the phone I pack Bluetooth adapter and a nice set of Sennheiser earbuds.
I like to pack light but still have a lot of options open. I’ve learned if your laptop+gear is too bulky to deal with you’ll just leave it at home rather than use it. I you have a small notebook sized computer that can couple with your phone for 6-8 hours of internet you’ll be a lot more likely to pick it up on your way out the door anytime.
I love my HTC Touch Pro phone but I’ve hated having to use an adapter to listen to music ever since the Wizard I had 4 years ago.
Now it looks like they will be moving towards including a standard 3.5″ jack in future phones.
Pet Peeve: Even though WM users have been griping about this for nearly half a decade modern blogs only see the world though iPhone/Android colored glasses.
Fuck you guys we’ve been fighting this war since before you were born!