I am a software developer myself, so I totally understand the feeling of distress when your product starts showing up on torrent sites. It has gotten so bad that now, even the $2 iPhone apps are starting to find their way to the underground despite their proprietary systems and low costs. At some point you have to consider the value of your own time to find, crack and install software onto a phone that you could have just bought for the cost of a Starbucks coffee.
Other developers feel this pain as well, but apparently not always for the same reason. Dmitry Chestnykh, who is a Mac developer with
Coding Robots, recent wrote an email to The Pirate Bay when he found his software product available with a crack on their site. He downloaded to see how how the crack worked and was immediately upset.
Hit the break to read the email.
MIT is always hard at work trying to solve the world's problems one piece of technology at a time. This week's solution is a floating yellow box that collects oil.
This autonomous robot, named Seaswarm, is capable of floating around on its own, without any human interaction, searching the sea for oil and collecting it. Now, this would be impressive by itself, however, this little guy can team up with friends to take on the ocean together, with the help of GPS and Wi-Fi connectivity.
For more on the Seaswarm and to see the MIT video, hit the break.
Early this month, Oracle joined the ranks of every other technology company on the planet and filed suit against Google. Oracle has claimed that Google violated patents they acquired when they purchased Sun Microsystems, namely Java-related patents, with their Dalvik virtual machine on the Android platform.
This lawsuit has led Google to pull their participation in the JavaOne developers' event, now led by Oracle. Google has participated in every JavaOne event since 2004, but feels it is no longer appropriate for them to participate in an event about the future of Java and open source software run by a company that files lawsuits over open source licenses.
For more on the lawsuit and Google's thoughts on JavaOne, hit the break.
George Lucas is taking out his lightsaber to attack the makers of a wireless headset called Master Mind that states its users can interact with computers through brainwaves. Jedi Mind, Inc. is the target of this Lucasfilm lawsuit over copyright infringement, claiming that the products made by this company could hurt Lucas' business and make customers confused.
Lucas has somewhat of a reputation of being intolerant of anyone using references to
Star Wars in their products. The now-popular "Droid" mark for Android-powered smartphones was, in fact, licensed from Lucasfilm for this reason - otherwise, Verizon Wireless would have to use another, probably less catchy name.
With this fairly common knowledge, it's surprising that Jedi Mind, Inc. even moved forward with its company and product names in the first place. Lucasfilm sent a cease-and-desist letter to the company in May of 2009, and then again in September of 2009 after Jedi Mind failed to phase out the Jedi-related marks. The two companies tried to settle out of court, but apparently failed, leading Lucasfilm to ask for $5 million in damages as well as injunctive relief.
Movie studios are sick of websites that offer pirated material and have decided to open a new lawsuit targeting an ad company that provides their services to these sites. Warner Bros and Disney have joined forces to sue Triton Media, saying the company is responsible for contributory and induced copyright infringement because Triton helps keep these sites alive by supporting them with ad and referral income.
Warner and Disney are going after Triton for supporting nine websites they claim to be "one-stop-shop" sites for illegal copies of the studios' work. Some of the sites include free-tv-video-online.info, watch-movies-links.net and thepiratecity.org - basically, no-name sites. Essentially, the lawsuit claims that both parties have profited from the distribution of the pirated works and Triton made it possible by offering "material assistance" to the sites.
To see if anything may come out of this lawsuit, check after the break.
Paul Allen, entrepreneur and co-founder of Microsoft, has filed a lawsuit against 11 companies for infringements on his Web search patents. The suit names Apple, Google, Facebook, Netflix, YouTube, and Microsoft partner Yahoo as defendants for violating four Interval Licensing LLC patents, though the court will likely have to weigh whether the patents in question are "obvious" or not.
The infringing patents have three main concepts in question: browser use for finding and looking through information, keeping a user's peripheral attention while using a device and letting users know of items of current interest. Basically, this is revolving around the idea of presenting searched-for information to a user along with related news articles, music, videos, status updates from friends or stock and weather info.
For more on what's going on here, follow the break.