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2010-08-28-wattPatVisualize Context (requires Java Plug-in)
CREATED BY chris • LAST EDITED BY chris 2663 days AGO
"In fact, it is only after their patents expired that Boulton and Watt really started to manufacture steam engines. Before then their activity consisted primarily of extracting hefty monopolistic royalties through licensing. Independent contractors produced most of the parts, and Boulton and Watt merely oversaw the assembly of the components by the purchasers."

"In most histories, [create James Watt] is a heroic inventor, responsible for the beginning of the Industrial Revolution. The facts suggest an alternative interpretation. Watt is one of many clever inventors working to improve steam power in the second half of the eighteenth century. After getting one step ahead of the pack, he remained ahead not by superior innovation, but by superior exploitation of the legal system. The fact that his business partner was a wealthy man with strong connections in Parliament, was not a minor help."

James Watt: Monopolist; excerpt from Against Intellectual Monopoly

Angesichts der unlängst Publicity-trächtig eingebrachten Patentklagen von Oracle (gegen Google) und Interval Licensing (gegen quasi die Gesamtheit der Online-Welt, bemerkenswerterweise allerdings mit Ausnahme von Amazon und Microsoft) ebenso sehr lesenswert:

Spiegel: Explosion des Wissens"Hat Deutschland im 19. Jahrhundert einen industriellen Aufstieg erlebt, weil das Land kein Urheberrecht kannte?"


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