I say "sorta" because a calculator is 100% a computer. A computer is 100% a
calculator. So using a calculator is not so much an analogy as it is seriously
simplifying the illusion of the complexity of the computer.
A computer is
nothing more then a calculator on physical steroids.
And by steroids I
A: Increase the physical cpu in the calculator by a factor of about
B: Increase the physical memory in the calculator by a factor of
C: Increase the physical input component - full keyboard
rather then just the basic calculator stuff
D: Increase the physical
display capability by a factor of about 1,000
When it comes to the
"software" of a calculator vs a computer - they are identical with the exception
of the physical limitations. As a software developer, you are limited to the
You boost the physical capabilities of your
calculator as outlined and you have a current modern-day all-purpose
For example, other then the physical limitations in the memory,
there's nothing stopping anyone from creating a program for a calculator to send
out some simple morse messages.
The hard part is in trying to help
those who view the computer as Rocket Science to understand it is nothing more
then a calculator.
What makes that so hard is a field of Laywers who have
a professionaly vested interest in making sure to complicate things as much as
possible in order to keep the illusion of complexity in place so they continue
Apply for patents - they are paid1 whether the patent is
granted or not
Collect license fees on those patents - they are paid
whether someone chooses to license or not
Enforce those patents in a
Court Of Law - this is their Golden Goose, they are paid a fortune no matter
what happens to the patent - and each time the patent survives they have another
fortune they can collect in the next lawsuit
There is absolutely zero
disincentive associated with applying and acquiring patents the Patent Lawyers
know should never have been applied for let alone issued.
And there is a
very strong financial incentive associated with every part of what's involved
Of course the Patent Lawyer profession will fight to have
everything - not just software, but the Laws of Nature as well - patentable.
It's in their financial interest with no apparent drawbacks to continue to do
Meanwhile, there's a $2 Million starting cost disincentive -
applied not to Lawyers, but businesses/individuals - to defend against a patent
no matter how bad a patent it is.
Only ethics or a foresight into the
serious negative future consequences would prent a given Patent Lawyer from
This is - in my humble, non legal opinion - the corner
stone to everything wrong with the applied US Patent System. And it appears to
be spreading to other Countries as those businesses learn from the US and return
the US Business "favors".
Without that changing, the patent system will
only become more complex and will continue to stagnate thereby choking the real
innovation that is occurring.
1: The exception that would alter the
equation of whether or not they get paid is if they are the inventor and/or
owner of the business that will own the patent.
[ Reply to This | Parent | # ]