Monday, November 23, 2015

Friday, October 2, 2015

"Why Are Lawyers So Good At Sex?"

This article asks the obvious question, "Why is it lawyers are so good at sex?"  Some of the answers:

Law is one of the oldest professions, and like other older professions, we get paid by the hour. Anybody who gets paid by the hour is never going to be in a hurry to finish. And lawyers, we can make something that could last only a few minutes go for hours and hours...

Talk can really make a difference. And talk is what lawyers do more than anything, right?

We’re used to asking for permission to withdraw. And it’s considered unethical to withdraw without adequate notice.

Monday, September 21, 2015

Friday, September 18, 2015

The 2015 Ig Nobel Prize Winners

The 2015 Ig Nobel Prize winners are out.  Some of the best ones:

  • Physics Prize, for testing the biological principle that nearly all mammals empty their bladders in about 21 seconds.

  • Literature Prize, for discovering that the word "huh?" (or its equivalent) seems to exist in every human language — and for not being quite sure why.

  • Medicine Prize, for experiments to study the biomedical benefits or biomedical consequences of intense kissing (and other intimate, interpersonal activities).

  • Biology Prize, for observing that when you attach a weighted stick to the rear end of a chicken, the chicken then walks in a manner similar to that in which dinosaurs are thought to have walked. 

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Wednesday, June 3, 2015

Friday, May 8, 2015

NBA Playoff Special: Wacky Basketball Patents

With the NBA playoffs in full swing, it's time for some wacky basketball patents.  I have seen the Giant Pop-A-Shot at arcades. 

My favorite, however, is "The Snuffleupagus."

Monday, April 20, 2015

John Oliver Takes On The Patent Trolls

The problems with the existing patent system are no longer just a matter for patent lawyers. Rather the mainstream media has taken notice: In yesterday's "Last Week Tonight," John Oliver discusses patent trolls.

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

My Latest EFF Project: Letter To The Federal Circuit About Transparency

Government transparency is an important issue.  In our complicated society, people need to know what their government is doing, so they can take steps to disagree if they don't like what is happening.

Recently, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit took a big step backwards on transparency.  Up until December 2014, the Federal Circuit would post on its website both its published opinions (its decisions in a case) and court orders affecting the procedure of a case. After December, the court effectively decided to stop posting orders. For example, in the third quarter of 2014, the court posted over 180 orders; but in the first quarter of 2015, the court only posted six orders.

Why are orders important? They inform the public of important events in legal cases that aren't a final, published opinion. These can include orders dismissing an appeal, orders granting temporary relief, orders transferring lawsuits from one trial court to another, and many more. For example, public interest groups like EFF rely on such orders to decide whether to participate in a case going forward, by filing an amicus brief. It's therefore very disappointing that the Federal Circuit decided to stop posting most of its orders.

Yesterday, EFF, along with Professor Dennis Crouch (the editor and author of the popular Patently-O blog), sent a letter to the Federal Circuit asking them to restore the publication of orders. EFF's blog post about the letter is here; Professor Crouch's blog post is here.

Friday, March 27, 2015

Best Comment Feed Ever?

Groupon sells a banana holder called a "Banana Bunker."  The product resembles, um, a more adult-oriented product.  Groupon decided to respond to every comment posted on the product's web page, and the comment feed is hilarious.

Saturday, February 28, 2015

My Latest EFF Amicus Brief: Commil v. Cisco

Last Thursday, EFF filed the latest amicus brief I helped write.  As explained in EFF's blog post, the case involves the level of intent necessary to induce someone else to infringe a patent.  In Commil v. Cisco, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit had ruled that a good faith belief that a patent is invalid is a defense to a claim for inducement.  The Supreme Court agreed to review the case; EFF's brief supports the Federal Circuit's rule.  Public Knowledge also has a very good blog post discussing the case.