scroll to top
Stuck on your essay?
Get ideas from this essay and see how your work stacks up
Word Count: 956
Software consists of lists of instructions that a computer reads and executes The tasks done by a computer are largely repetitive the same chunks of instructions are executed many times Each chunk performs one specific task and goes by the label algorithm a method for accomplishing a specific task In the United States it is possible to obtain a patent for a software algorithm One example of a patented software algorithm is the LZW software algorithm The LZW patent is owned by Unisys The algorithm is commonly used to compress an image file into a format know as the Graphics Interchange Format gif Patent law was created to protect the rights of the inventor and to encourage innovation The thinking was that an inventor would be more inclined to reveal his invention to the public if he knew that a rival would not steal his design and undercut the original inventors business By encouraging inventors to share inventions with all patent law tries to improve society Patent law however is far from perfect particularly in the area of software patents it has failed miserably to create innovation or to improve society Like the prophecy of the witches in Macbeth things are not always as they seem Software patents may appear to be good at first glance but in reality they stifle innovation and creativity First the idea of patenting a software algorithm steps into the realm of absurdity As previously stated an algorithm describes a concrete set of instructions which upon execution by a computer perform a specific task The above definition however includes one erroneous detail the instructions in an algorithm need not be executed by a computer A computer greatly speeds the execution but a human being can just as easily albeit slower execute the steps in an algorithm With this knowledge one struggles to grasp what exactly Unisys has patented Have they patented the idea of the algorithm or
@Kibin is a lifesaver for my essay right now!!
- Sandra Slivka, student @ UC Berkeley
Wow, this is the best essay help I've ever received!
- Camvu Pham, student @ U of M
If I'd known about @Kibin in college, I would have gotten much more sleep
- Jen Soust, alumni @ UCLA