Software Patents and reduction/interchangeability of presentation

edA-qa mort-ora-y eda-qa at
Sun Aug 17 16:33:46 UTC 2003

One thing I've not really seen disccused much, in the context of 
software patents, is the reduction of physical processes to mathematical 
representations.  I have this troubling feeling that this forces us to 
allow software patents, or not have any patents whatsoever.

Consider that all, save a few, physical processes and biological 
processes can be reduced to a series of math forms which express the 
process.  Indeed, in the quantam world only the math forms exist, as the 
empirical status is not quite there.

To extend this, most of us would probably argue that software is an 
extension of such math forms* (where logic is included as such a math).

So the question I've never actually seen addressed is, "What is a 
software patent really?".  At what point does something stop being a 
mathematical representation of a physical process and become a strictly 
"soft" program?

If biological or quantam computing becomes a reality (ie, a more 
functional reality), is the line between software and 
physical/biological process any longer clear enough to make a distinction?

*Those parts which are not math forms are surely physical processes, 
which then in turn could be reduced to alternate math forms.

edA-qa mort-ora-y
Idea Architect

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