schliz writes "The Australian software patent system could be used by open source developers to ensure their inventions remain available to the community, a conference organized by intellectual property authority IP Australia heard this week According to Australian inventor Ric Richardson, whose company came out on top of a multi-million dollar settlement with Microsoft in March, a world without software patents would be 'open slather for anybody who can just go faster than the next person.' Software developer Ben Sturmfels, whose 2010 anti-software-patent petition won the support of open source community members such as Jonathan Oxer, Andrew Tridgell, and software freedom activist Richard Stallman, disagreed."
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