Yet Another Ridiculous Software Patent

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From KSTW in Seattle:

Microsoft Patents ‘Avoid Ghetto’ Feature For GPS Devices

A GPS device is used to find shortcuts and avoid traffic, but Microsoft’s patent states that a route can be plotted for pedestrians to avoid an “unsafe neighborhood or being in an open area that is subject to harsh temperatures.”

You may decide for yourself whether to be outraged by the idea of Microsoft developing a ghetto-avoidance feature. Either way, though, you definitely should be outraged that they can get a patent for it. What’s next? A patent for an app that allows you to find city hall? Or avoid city hall?

I know this patent hasn’t been tested in court and may well be worthless. I don’t care. It should have been tossed out of the patent office with extreme prejudice, and Microsoft should have been warned not to waste their time with this kind of thing ever again. Ditto for every other company that engages in this nonsense. It really needs to stop.

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Corrupt leaders the world over can (and will) try to shut down the truth, but when the truth has millions of people on its side, you can't keep it down for good. And there's no more powerful or urgent argument for your support of Mother Jones' journalism right now than that. We need to raise about $450,000 to hit our online fundraising budget in these next few months, so please read more from Monika and pitch in if you can.

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