LOL! (setq pinheads ‘microsoft) is definitely code snippet of the week! I hope that this patent isn’t as bogus as it sounds (software patents sck by the way!) and that Microsft won’t wield it like a big stick! Scoble?

From Microsoft IS NOT.:


Micr*soft has a new patent that claims the Visual Basic"IS NOT" operator.

Quoting from the patent's first claim:

1. A system for determining if two operands point to different locations in memory, the system comprising: a compiler for receiving source code and generating executable code from the source code, the source code comprising an expression comprising an operator associated with a first operand and a second operand, the expression evaluating to true when the first operand and the second operand point to different memory locations.

and later

[0054] At step 408, executable is generated. In one embodiment of the
invention, the executable generated is a machine-independent
intermediate code, such as MICROSOFT Intermediate Language or Common
Intermediate Language, although native (machine dependent) language or
byte code may alternatively or additionally be generated.

In other words, "F*ck you MONO".

LISP has been able to do this for 40 plus years. The LISP eq/equal operator is such a fundamental piece of prior art that this whole thing should be easily struck down. Writing ISNOT as '(defun isnot (a b) (not (eq (a b)))' is completely obvious to anyone skilled in the art.

Luckily Novell just got a $536,000,000 settlement from Micr*soft, and they employ the Gnome/Mono guys, so they have lots of money and standing to wipe this patent out. And since IBM seems to be backing Novel (they paid Novell to buy SUSE), at least the good guys have a chance.

(setq pinheads 'microsoft)

Posted by Jim On 11/19/04 At 04:42 PM



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