When the world follows the Way,
algorithms are published in the journals.
When the world does not follow the Way,
patent portfolios are built up in self-defense.

There is no misfortune like avarice:
no evil greater than unchecked greed;
no disaster more tragic than the inability to be satisfied.

Even minimal understanding
of when to be satisfied
is sufficient.

 


chapter notes:

Since horses are no longer instruments of war, and war is outside my target context, I have converted them to software patents.

For those unfamiliar with the issue, software patents are a genuine bane to software developers of any kind. Most software patents are useless except as a threat for legal harassment; in the rare case where the content of the patent is actually useful, the patent causes the underlying algorithm to become “encumbered” (an actual term of art in the computer world), and developers avoid it like the plague.