Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Andis Kaulins Hitting a 300-yard Drive : Golf-Club Cochem/Mosel Driving Range

Andis Kaulins Hitting a 300-yard Drive from Andis Kaulins on Vimeo.

Andis Kaulins Hitting a 300-yard Drive

Well, I nearly fell on my head on that one. I by no means have a perfect swing. But I won my club's men's championship in 2008 at age 61. It is the speed of the swing that makes for distance, determined mostly by a quick body turn at impact. If you look carefully, you will see that I barely cock my wrists. I won the longest drive competition in one tournament in 2008 with a drive of 340 meters (about 370 yards). But remember, drive for show and putt for dough. For scoring it is the short game that counts.

France Defies European Union and Passes Controversial Anti-Piracy Three Strikes and You're Out Creation and Internet Law Against Illegal File-Sharing

The French National Assembly of the Fifth French Republic, the lower legislative chamber in the bicameral Parliament of France, has passed the "three strikes and you're out" anti-piracy "Creation and Internet Law", also called the "Three-Strikes Law" against illegal file-sharing and it is expected that the upper house, the French Senate, will also pass the law tomorrow.

As written at ZeroPaid.com:

"Today the French National Assembly formally passed the controversial “Creation and Internet” law by a narrow 296 to 233 margin.

The legislation, backed by President Nicolas Sarkozy, and surprisingly defeated in the same body last month, calls for the creation of the Haute Autorité pour la Diffusion des Oeuvres et la Protection des droits sur Internet (HADOPI), a new govt agency whose task it would be to sanction those accused of illegal file-sharing."

The law is controversial in the European Union because it directly defies efforts of the EU Parliament in recent weeks to make the Three Strikes Law illegal through telecom law amendments which make internet access a fundamental right of EU citizens. As reported by La Quadrature du Net:

" "A formidable campaign from the citizens put the issues of freedoms on the Internet at the center of the debates of the Telecoms Package. This is a victory by itself. It started with the declaration of commissioner Viviane Reding considering access to Internet as a fundamental right. The massive re-adoption of amendment 138/462 rather than the softer compromise negotiated by rapporteur Trautmann with the Council is an even stronger statement. These two elements alone confirm that the French ‘three strikes’ scheme, HADOPI, is dead already." explains Jérémie Zimmermann, co-founder of La Quadrature du Net."

It thus has all the makings of an upcoming confrontation between the French Parliament and the Parliament of the European Union.

The passage by the French Assembly had an immediate reaction in the United Kingdom, as reported by Nigel Kendall, Technology Editor at the Times Online, who writes that the UK is the latest country in Europe to formulate a strategy to combat illegal online file-sharing:

"A group representing the UK's creative industries today called for the UK government to intervene to prevent the spread of illegal file-sharing of copyrighted content such as music and film.

The group, a loose coalition that includes The British Phonographic Industry and the Film Distributors' Association, as well as trades unions such as the National Union of Journalists and the Musicians' Union, issued a joint statement following a meeting in London on May 12."

There is in the long term of course no question that the days of illegal fire-sharing are numbered, since large parts of the world economy are built on intellectual property rights which have to be defended. The French law is taking the logical approach by providing for the tracing of illegal file-sharers and a three-strikes and you are out policy toward them, leading to the cutting of their Internet connections. As written at the Hollywood Reporter:

"The "Creation and Internet" law, nicknamed the "Hadopi" because it involves the the creation of a Hadopi (High Authority for the Broadcast of Content and the Protection of Rights on the Internet) committee, authorizes the tracing of illegal downloaders through their IP addresses."

Once illegal downloaders are faced with the consequence that their Internet connections will be cut off, illegal file-sharing will drop quickly since the average citizen will not want to take that risk and will thus no longer engage in what he or she knows to be illegal file-sharing, but which currently has little risk of detection or penalties.

We presume that a compromise political and legal solution will be the recognition of Internet access as a fundamental right of EU citizens, provided that they do not engage in illegal activities via that very same Internet. We see no direct confrontation to be necessary here.

Nanotechnology Patent Landscape in the UK 2009 : Nanotech Patents May be Declining

The Nanotechnology e-News Bulletin of April 30, 2009 in FREE REPORT: IPO produce UK Innovation Nanotechnology Patent Landscape Analysis 2009 refers to a free report (80 pdf pages) just issued on the nanotechnology patent landscape in the United Kingdom 2009:

"The UK Intellectual Property Office has compiled a nanotechnology patent landscape for the UK. This reports on UK patent data and reflects on UK innovation in the field of nanotechnology...."

UK innovation nanotechnology patent landscape analysis April 2009
Intellectual Property Office
IPO Patent Informatics Project Report: UK innovation nanotechnology patent landscape analysis Customer: Nanotechnology KTN
Customer Contact: Dr Toby Gill
IPO Contact: Ben Buchanan, Patent Informatics Manager, IPO
e: ben.buchanan@ipo.gov.uk phone: (01633) 814742
Date prepared: 16 April 2009

The report comes to the following Conclusions:

"The peak of activity of UK-based nanotechnology patent activity has been in recent years, from 2000-2003 and may exhibit a genuine decline since then. The most prolific classification relates to medicinal preparations and cyclodextrins, whilst other classifications relating to medicinal, topical or cosmetic preparations occupy seven of the top ten places.

Looking at sheer patent volumes, the main industrial filers are Tioxide, Pfizer, AstraZeneca and Philips. Cancer Research Campaign and QinetiQ are in the top five. Cambridge University is also ranked in the top five applicants but 67% of activity is from the commercial sector. However, the fact that 14% of activity is from universities is a significant point to note. Furthermore, much of this activity is very recent (post-1999) indicating that research is still ongoing. Cambridge, Oxford, and Glasgow were the top three universities.

Commercial activity overall continues up until 2003 with a subsequent sharp tail off which is likely due at least in part to publication delay. The top commercial applicant, Tioxide, has a peak year in 1995 but activity is zero beyond 1997. The second commercial applicant, Cancer Research Campaign, had a peak year in 1993 and appear to be active up to the present day. QinetiQ had a peak year in 1999 and their activity also appears to continue up to the present. A narrowing down of the temporal range could identify more recent UK based activity and provide further evidence for current specialisms.

In terms of the general categories used, "applications of nanotechnology" is the most prolific. This grouping was frequently applied in conjunction with others (e.g. an application of bionanotechnology would invite double grouping). The transition of science-base to technical application is often regarded as an indication of emergence and gaining maturity. The smallest technology grouping was that of nanofiltration/separation, but many such techniques may exist in the working up of the nanosystems prepared. Nanotoxicity, even on a global scale, provides a small dataset, but further work on precisely defining this category could provide more insights. Nanomaterials / nanostructures, bionanotechnology, and nanometrology have decreased more readily in recent years than applications of nanotechnology, electronic applications. Government applicants are overrepresented in the field of nanomaterials / nanostructures. Cambridge University is a top applicant in the areas of nanomaterials, electronic applications and nanometrology.

The patent holdings profile for nanotechnology shows that the field still appears to have significant amounts of research ongoing, with a relatively small number of established applicants having large portfolios. Given that the dataset covers the whole of nanotechnology, time spent further studying separate research areas could provide evidence for emergent technologies, as the large volumes of patents seems to obscure indicators of such areas. In comparison with EP data, the UK data shows more activity in pharmaceutical fields, whereas thin films and related fields appear more significant in the EP data.

Overall there appear to be aspects of UK nanotechnology activity which are fertile sources of patentable technology, however, in the current dataset they appear to be somewhat obscured by areas of previous activity, such that they cannot necessarily be identified as emerging or emergent areas. Further work in this area could address this."

See the whole report, including the final Recommendations.

Nanotechnology Growth and Nanotech Patents

At IPFrontline.com in Nanotechnology Patents and Challenges Raj Bawa, PhD writes to open his article that:

"The time for nanotechnology has come and a classic technological revolution is unfolding. According to the National Science Foundation, by 2015 the annual global market for nano-related goods and services will top $1 trillion, making it one of the fastest growing industries in history. If these figures prove to be accurate, nanotechnology will become a larger economic force than the combined telecommunications and information technology industries at the beginning of the technology boom of the late 1990s." Read more here.

An interesting introduction to the legal challenges created by nanotechnology in patents is found in the book, Nanotechnology Patents: A Legal Insight, by C. Sri Krishna, ICFAI University Press, ISBN 8131413357, 2008 edition.

Nanotechnology Now wrote about the book on May 9, 2009 - here is the abstract:

"Abstract:

Nanotechnology is an evolving branch of science. It is a powerful technology of the current era with wide range of industrial applications and reconstructing of nature at molecular level. It is concerned with the objects that range between 1 to 100 nanometers. A nanometer is a one billionth part of a meter (1x10e-9). Nanotech products are outcome of nano-techniques and include nano-particles production, nanofabrication and nanobiotechnology. These products have wide applications in various science and technological areas. Investments in the field of nanotechnology research and developmental activities are constantly increasing. Many countries have allocated huge amounts, in private and public sectors, to these programmes to boost its activities further. The increase in number of nano-patents have posed several legal issues particularly pertaining to the patenting activities, claims, anticommons, thickets, land grab, doctrine of inherency, doctrine of claim differentiation etc. This book contains articles that explore various aspects of nanotechnology, patenting of nanotech inventions and economic, ethical and societal perspectives of the nanotech patents."

Amicus Books has a long review of the book here.

In Nanotechnology Law & Business (produced by the Berkeley Electronic Press -bepress), Volume 1, Issue 1 2004 Article 4, Vivek Koppikar, Stephen B. Maebiusy and J. Steven Ruttz write about Current Trends in Nanotech Patents: A View From Inside the Patent Office. Here is the abstract:

"ABSTRACT

Patents are critical to commercialization of nanotechnology. With large numbers of patents being filed, investors, lawyers, and managers must understand legal issues involving nanotech patents and carefully monitor patent issuances, licenses, and litigation. In this article, PTO examiner Vivek Koppikar and patent attorneys Stephen Maebius and Steve Rutt discuss trends in nanotechnology patents. They first survey the patent landscape and demonstrate that large numbers of nanotech patents are being filed in different areas of nanotechnology. They then discuss what the PTO is doing to prepare for the continued increase in applications. Finally, they analyze obstacles that applicants might face in filing nanotech patents. Specifically, the doctrines of inherent anticipation, obviousness, and enablement might be used by examiners to reject or require amendment of claims.
"

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