"Lawrence Lessig first came to public attention a few years ago
when U.S. District Judge Thomas Penfield Jackson, then presiding
over the Microsoft antitrust case, invited him down from Harvard as
a special master...
"This was all of a piece with the spirit of Creative Commons, a
nonprofit organization Lessig helped create with the laudable idea
of Lessig would limit software copyrights to ten years. After that,
the code would wind up in the public domain. creating a 'property
conservancy' that, among other things, would "protect works of
special public value from exclusionary private ownership." Some of
the works would presumably be donated, others would be bought from
the creators. Nothing untoward there.
"But Lessig is also going further. In his latest book, 'The
Future of Ideas: The Fate of the Commons in a Connected World,' he
draws a distinction between the intellectual property developed by,
say, an Ernest Hemingway, and the intellectual property created by
a code jockey..."
"In response to the Aug. 23 Perspectives column by Charles
Cooper, 'Why Larry Lessig gets an "F" in software':
"Software may not have existed when the Constitution was
drafted, but patents were designed to cover 'the state of the art'
at that time. Notice that patents were patently open: A patent was
only granted when designs and methods were described in sufficient
detail that somebody 'sufficiently skilled in the arts' could
completely understand, if not themselves replicate, the