jellie writes "According to Ars Technica, a new bill introduced by Rep. Bob Goodlatte (R-VA), the chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, has received bipartisan support and has a real chance of passing. In a press call, lawyers from the CCIA, EFF, and Public Knowledge had universal praise for the bill, which is called the Innovation Act of 2013. The EFF has a short summary of the good and bad parts of an earlier draft of the bill. The bill will require patent holders who are filing a suit to identify the specific products and claims to are being infringed, require the loser in a suit to pay attorney's fees and costs, and force trolls to reveal anyone who has a "financial interest" in the case, making them possibly liable for damages." Link to Original Source top
jellie writes "John F. Duffy, a professor of law at George Washington University Law School, has "discovered a constitutional flaw in the appointment process over the last eight years for judges who decide patent appeals and disputes, and his short paper documenting the problem seems poised to undo thousands of patent decisions concerning claims worth billions of dollars." The issue involves 46 of the 74 administrative judges in the United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit, which "hears appeals from people and companies whose patent applications were turned down by patent examiners, and it decides disputes over who invented something first." The 46 judges were appointed since 2000, when a new law, almost certainly unconstitutional, went into effect. According to the article, the Justice Department "has already all but conceded that Professor Duffy is right."" top
jellie writes "A NY Times article talks about Philip M. Parker, who uses computer algorithms to generate books. According to the article: "Mr. Parker has generated more than 200,000 books, as an advanced search on Amazon.com under his publishing company shows, making him, in his own words, "the most published author in the history of the planet." And he makes money doing it." Using 60-70 computers and a team of programmers, he collects publicly available information on a subject and combines them into a book. The books are printed by POD and are often purchased by medical libraries." top
that the filing date for ESN v. Cisco was changed from Oct. 15, 2007, to Oct. 16, 2007, after ESN's local counsel "called the EDTX court clerk, and convinced him/her to change the docket to reflect an October 16 filing date, rather than the October 15 filing date." The filing date is significant, Frenkel alleged in the blog, because the ESN patent that is the basis of the suit was not issued until Oct. 16.
Interestingly, one of the plaintiff's lawyers is John Ward, Jr., who is the son of U.S. District Judge T. John Ward of the Eastern District." top
jellie writes "Numerous studies, and conventional wisdom, suggest that men tend to have more sexual partners than women do. For example, a recent federal study concluded that, in their lifetimes, men had a median of seven partners and women four. But simple logic indicates this is impossible. This article addresses some of the mathematical considerations and cites a math professor's proof:
"By way of dramatization, we change the context slightly and will prove what will be called the High School Prom Theorem. We suppose that on the day after the prom, each girl is asked to give the number of boys she danced with. These numbers are then added up giving a number G. The same information is then obtained from the boys, giving a number B.
Proof: Both G and B are equal to C, the number of couples who danced together at the prom. Q.E.D."
The article also tries to explain some possible reasons for the discrepancy." top
jellie writes "The Associated Press reports that the CIA has released 693 pages of internal documents, nicknamed the "Family Jewels", about events that led to a scandal in the 1970's. From the article:
The documents detail assassination plots against foreign leaders like Fidel Castro, the testing of mind- and behavior-altering drugs like LSD on unwitting citizens, wiretapping of U.S. journalists, spying on civil rights and anti-Vietnam war protesters, opening mail between the United States and the Soviet Union and China, break-ins at the homes of ex-CIA employees and others.
jellie writes "The New York Times Magazine has a story about real-money trading in massively multiplayer online games titled "The Life of a Chinese Gold Farmer". The author provides some background of the practice and interviews several players. To describe the scale of the virtual-money industry, the author mentions a 2001 paper by an economist from the University of Indiana: "Updated and more broadly applied, Castronova's results [based on his paper from 2001] suggest an aggregate gross domestic product for today's virtual economies of anywhere from $7 billion to $12 billion, a range that puts the economic output of the online gamer population in the company of Bolivia's, Albania's and Nepal's."" top
jellie writes "An advisory judicial committee, the Dutch Posthumus II Committee, will be reviewing the case of Lucia de Berk, a.k.a the "Dutch 'Killer' Nurse". In 2003, she was sentenced to life imprisonment for the murders of seven patients and the attempted murder of three more, based on the probability of "1 in 342 million" that all those deaths would coincide with a nurse's shifts. However, as detailed in a page by a Dutch mathematician Richard D. Gill, many of been questioning the statistics used in the case. From the article: "Curious that a mass murderer could kill so many people and simultaneously take care that the total number of deaths on the ward is actually lower than in a similar period before she worked at this hospital: this data is not incorporated in the analysis or even made available!" and "[The expert for the prosecution] apparently does not know the meaning of p-value. He multiplies three independent p-values... and appears to present the product as a p-value." Statistics are often used in courts to convince the judge or jury, but what happens when unreliable or inaccurate methods have been used in generating those numbers?