Kenn Cukier on patents in The Economist

The edition of The Economist on the newstands (Oct. 22 – 28, 2005) has
an extensive section — 18 pp. of the print version — on patents and technology, written by
Kenneth Cukier.  Must-reading for anyone interested in the future
of information technologies, open source, licensing, and intellectual
property law.  Cukier tracks the growth of patenting, in scale and
economic/strategic importance, and concludes:

“This survey will argue that, despite such adjustment problems [i.e.,
the fear of ‘mutually assured destruction’ and an end to US
competitiveness], the huge changes in intellectual property currently
taking place in the IT sector will in time produce more efficient

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