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Patents Handhelds Apple

Apple Wins Mobile Patent On Displaying Lists, Documents 306

Posted by Soulskill
from the history-began-in-2007 dept.
walterbyrd writes "Apple yesterday was granted Patent no. 8,223,134 for 'Portable electronic device, method, and graphical user interface for displaying electronic lists and documents.' According to the patent's description, the technology relies upon a touch-screen display and includes both the function for displaying lists and documents, and how they look on a mobile product."
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Apple Wins Mobile Patent On Displaying Lists, Documents

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  • Re:I don't get it (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Skarecrow77 (1714214) on Wednesday July 18, 2012 @12:05AM (#40681817)

    I wonder... can I get a patent on filing stupid patents?

    I mean just think, that will pre-empt thousands and thousands of these things.

    it'll be a god damn money pit.

  • by BlueStrat (756137) on Wednesday July 18, 2012 @03:17AM (#40682861)

    Why not try to create a better informed electorate? One which understands that software patents deter competition and stifle innovation.

    What does it matter how informed and clued-in the electorate is if the politicians won't listen?

    Don't get me wrong. I fully support efforts to inform and involve more people in the process. First, however, one must have a government that will respond and be accountable to the electorate. Career politicians have the time to form networks of cronies in and out of government to secure their positions and power, and to insulate themselves from public accountability.

    As far as the new politicians, if they lie about their intentions and/or behave badly they must be voted out. There's no "Pre-Crime" that can determine this ahead of time. The electorate can only try to vet candidates as well as possible, and kick them to the curb if they prove untrustworthy.

    The only course we can take to truly protect ourselves against government corruption is to limit the amount of power and wealth they control, and the amount of time they have to abuse it. Nobody is going to try to bribe/influence a politician to get government subsidies, for example, if said politician/government hasn't the power or wealth to provide such subsidies.

    This in turn will be a disincentive to those contributing/spending large amounts of campaign and lobbying money, since their returns on their "investment" will be greatly reduced or eliminated. The framers of the Constitution knew this, and deliberately hamstrung the central government for precisely these reasons.

    The more power and wealth government controls, the more money it's worth spending to those seeking influence. The reverse is also true, which is the point.

    Strat

  • by Xest (935314) on Wednesday July 18, 2012 @04:54AM (#40683371)

    I think it's probably harder to fix the electorate than fix the system, because the electorate is in many cases kept dumb by the system, because the system benefits from an uninformed electorate. If you want to fix the electorate you fight an uphill battle because those with the power to easily change this are working against you, whilst you, a minority, have neither power nor numbers.

    Despite this I largely agree that the suggestions put forward by the GP aren't necessarily going to fix much. The fixes that are needed (not just for the US, but even countries like the UK) are:

    1) Political campaigns funded purely by the public purse, relative to past popular support performance, with a cap such that the largest party has no inherent financial benefit over say, their next 2 or 3 closest competitors.

    People don't like paying for politics, but this is simply the only way to ensure that parties campaign and perform in the interests of the public, rather than lobbyists. I would argue that any cost involved in this sort of thing to the tax payer would be more than made up for by the savings of having competent government that doesn't spend money handing useless contracts to lobbyists who got them in power etc.

    2) A representative voting system.

    There is an argument that representative voting systems like PR create governments that have little strength, but this is clearly false as Germany has proven having had coalition governments since the war. Ultimately minority or coalition governments are forced to compromise. In the UK people complain about our current coalition, citing things like the increase in tuition fees to £9,000 but they miss the fact that if it weren't for the coalition the Tories were actually going to push fees of £12,000. Our coalition has made a lot of mistakes, but it's naive to think the Lib Dems haven't had at least some degree of moderating influence on the government. The NHS changes were similarly far far worse under purely Tory proposals. Even with our shitty example of a coalition government, the coalition has led to moderation and has still been better than the alternatives - a Labour or Tory majority.

    3. Limit media ownership.

    Limit media ownership to say, 10% of the media, to ensure that no one media mogul can have undue influence on the media. Having a strong public broadcaster like the BBC which has a legal obligation to be impartial is also of major benefit.

    Unless you do these sorts of root and branch changes you cannot have a healthy democracy, it will always be more easily corrupted, much less representative of the people and far more representative of vested interests and lobby groups.

    It's unlikely America especially would ever go for these changes because many Americans have been fed bullshit about how the state is evil, but this has simply been used as a method by which to ensure corporations are strong enough to be able to control the state, which is then used as the tool by which to act against the interest of most Americans which creates this obscure feedback loop of Americans then thinking the state is evil and supporting laws that make corporations more powerful. Similarly the idea of state funding for political campaigns would probably be seen as too socialist in America, where socialism is defined to be synonymous with communism which is defined to be inherently evil because America lost the Vietnam war and failed in Korea to attain complete victory etc.

    Just as religion and state should never be mixed, neither should corporate interests and state, and the only way to remove that separation is with the likes of implementations of ideas such as points 1 and 3 above. Point 2 works to limit corporate interests by itself, because it forces politicians to listen to the people if they want to be elected, it forces them to pursue moderate policies that at least half-please everyone, rather than extreme policies often pushed by corporate interests that make some people happy, whilst destroying the lives of others.

    Until you solve this problem of the merging of state and corporations, you cannot have a healthy democracy and again, just as you cannot have a healthy democracy when there is a merging of religion and state.

"No problem is so formidable that you can't walk away from it." -- C. Schulz

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