This report provides an overview of the recent history of software patents from an economic and legal perspective.
Download the full report (PDF).
On the economic front, there continue to be billions of dollars in litigation over software patents every year, and such suits are increasingly against companies in the general economy who have software patent liability simply because they have a web site. Several pro-software patent academics have searched the existing data for evidence that software patents foster innovation, and failed to find any.
On the legal front, the courts have begun to take notice, and from the Patent Office to the Supreme Court, judges have begun to indicate a desire to revise the current policy that everything is patentable subject matter. Expect to see the restoration of many important limits on what may be patented.