Public universities and even the US Navy have sold hundreds of patents to America's most notorious troll


Researcher Yarden Katz scraped the database of Intellectual Ventures, a giant business that buys up patents, but produces nothing but lawsuits (previously), and discovered that IV claims ownership of nearly 500 patents that were created at public expense by researchers employed by public universities, and another 100 or so patents filed by the US Navy. Read the rest

The Trolls: hilarious comedy about...patent trolls?


The Trolls is a new indie feature about plucky entrepreneurs who have their lives destroyed by patent trolls, so they patent the act of being a patent troll, and turn the tables! Read the rest

Patent fighters attack the crown jewels of three of America's worst patent trolls


Unified Patents raises money from companies that are the target of patent-trolling and then uses it to challenge the most widely used patents in each of its members' sectors: now it's going for the gold. Read the rest

Fashion student simulates couture collection made from Alexander McQueen's cloned skin

pure-human-tina-gorjanc-central-saint-martins-material-futures-fashion-design-leather_dezeen_936_13 (1)

Alexander McQueen's first collection after graduating from Central Saint Martins was Jack the Ripper Stalks His Victims which included locks of his hair; for her own grad project, called "Pure Human," Central Saint Martins student Tina Gorjanc created a line of clothes and accessories that asks the audience to imagine that it was made from pelts cloned from DNA retrieved from McQueen's hair strands. Read the rest

Google patents an adhesive that sticks pedestrians to cars that hit them


Florida man has prior art!

From The Guardian:

The patent, which was granted on 17 May, is for a sticky adhesive layer on the front end of a vehicle, which would aim to reduce the damage caused when a pedestrian hit by a car is flung into other vehicles or scenery.

“Ideally, the adhesive coating on the front portion of the vehicle may be activated on contact and will be able to adhere to the pedestrian nearly instantaneously,” according to the patent description.

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Printer ink wars may make private property the exclusive domain of corporations

Serfs paying their feudal lords

Printer manufacturer Lexmark hates America, and everything good and right in the world, because we keep stubbornly insisting that if we buy a printer cartridge, we can refill it, because it's ours.

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Menstruation is the mother of invention


Rose Eveleth presents us a history of patented menstrual devices from 1928 on, from cellular tampons that message you when they need changing to a "Nether garment for and method of controlling crotch odors." Read the rest

TPP vs Canada: a parade of horribles


Michael Geist has rung in the new year with the first in a series of posts that set out, in eye-watering detail, the bowel-loosening terror of the effects that the secretly negotiated Trans Pacific Partnership would have on Canada if the country ratifies it. Read the rest

Microsoft's patent on a UI slider is EFF's Stupid Patent of the Month


EFF has awarded its coveted Stupid Patent of the Month prize to Microsoft for D554,140, a design patent on a slider widget for a UI. Read the rest

How enforcing a crappy patent bankrupted the Eskimo Pie company


Russell Stover's innovative Eskimo Pie treats were the smash-hit of 1920, and represented the culmination of long and careful experimentation with different techniques for adding a chocolate coating to ice-cream. Read the rest

Landmark patent case will determine whether you can ever truly own a device again


Former IBM division Lexmark (which, a decade ago, lost a key copyright case that tried to ban ink-toner refilling) is headed to court in a patent case called Lexmark v. Impression, where it argues that patent law gives it the right to restrict your use of your property after you buy it. Read the rest

The shape of the Internet (according to patent drawings)


The stylized art of patent drawings is instantly recognizable. Before the information age, the drawings were drafter's jewelboxes, designed to make the workings of new mechanical inventions legible to other inventors (and patent examiners). Read the rest

Inspiring and gorgeous patent drawings

Inventions are exciting, but the best ones are art.

The libertarian case for patent reform

Derek Khanna, who spearheaded the legislative initiative that made phone unlocking legal, has published a report on patent reform with the libertarian-leaning Lincoln Labs that sets out the case for patent reform being necessary for economic liberty. Read the rest

Stupid patent for the ages: "Changing order quantities"

The USPTO granted a notorious patent troll a patent on allowing customers to change quantities after they place their initial order. Read the rest

John Oliver on patent trolls

Nailed it ♬ (via Techdirt) Read the rest

EFF: Here's how to fix patents in America

Two years in the making, Defend Innovation is a whitepaper by Electronic Frontier Foundation attorneys, setting out a program for fixing America's horribly busted patent system. Read the rest

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