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Woz Calls Apple "The Good Guy" Among Large Patent Owners

By - Source: AFR | B 71 comments

Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak is weighing in on the difficulty of patents being leveraged by trolls and larger companies against startups.

 According to Wozniak, there are "certain [technology] categories that are heavily blocked off because the big companies make sure they own it all."

In an article published by Financial Review, Wozniak noted that while the patent system is presenting challenges to new companies, there is still room to invent and entrepreneurs should be encouraged to innovate. However, he recalled his own experience with patents when he designed the Apple II computer and Apple had to pay license fees to RCA for the idea that letters could be shown as pixels on a computer screen.

"We actually wound up paying them two bucks for every computer we shipped just for that simple idea," he said. "That sort of thing is going to crop up over and over – very simple ideas that the big companies with big money are going to own, and the small guy who starts up is going to have to pay."

As far as Apple is concerned, he described the company as "the good guy on the block of all of them", simply because Apple is inventing and "creating so much".

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Top Comments
  • 27 Hide
    Anonymous , April 13, 2012 4:11 PM
    Is this the same Apple that sued HTC over hyperlinks in text messages?
  • 25 Hide
    bak0n , April 13, 2012 4:11 PM
    All price fixers are "good guys" in their own mind.
  • 25 Hide
    dcrussian , April 13, 2012 4:07 PM
    How can "entrepreneurs [...] be encouraged to innovate" when there's a constant sort of "fear" that you'll be breaking a patent when you make something. Seems like people have to reinvent the wheel just to avoid lawsuits these days; that or pay royalties on patents.
Other Comments
    Display all 71 comments.
  • 24 Hide
    sublime2k , April 13, 2012 4:04 PM
    Creating so much what? Shiny gadgets?
  • 22 Hide
    crapfacednoob , April 13, 2012 4:06 PM
    Get a load of this. Stupidity at its greatest.
  • 25 Hide
    dcrussian , April 13, 2012 4:07 PM
    How can "entrepreneurs [...] be encouraged to innovate" when there's a constant sort of "fear" that you'll be breaking a patent when you make something. Seems like people have to reinvent the wheel just to avoid lawsuits these days; that or pay royalties on patents.
  • -9 Hide
    Anonymous , April 13, 2012 4:08 PM
    realy toms? realy?
  • 15 Hide
    Anonymous , April 13, 2012 4:11 PM
    what a fanboy.
  • 27 Hide
    Anonymous , April 13, 2012 4:11 PM
    Is this the same Apple that sued HTC over hyperlinks in text messages?
  • 25 Hide
    bak0n , April 13, 2012 4:11 PM
    All price fixers are "good guys" in their own mind.
  • 19 Hide
    halcyon , April 13, 2012 4:12 PM
    Did anyone expect "Woz" to have a different perspective? I like Apple products but I'd not go so far as to call them the "good guys" with a straight face.
  • 20 Hide
    Bloob , April 13, 2012 4:21 PM
    Because patenting rectangles isn't doing the little guys harm...
  • 20 Hide
    webbwbb , April 13, 2012 4:22 PM
    halcyonI like Apple products but I'd not go so far as to call them the "good guys" with a straight face.


    Rephrased: I enjoy paying villians for thier evil deeds.
  • 17 Hide
    ricdiculus , April 13, 2012 4:22 PM
    simply because Apple is inventing and "creating so much"

    Dont even know how to react to this one.
  • 15 Hide
    hardcore_gamer , April 13, 2012 4:27 PM
    "Woz Calls Apple "The Good Guy" Among Large Patent Owners"


    April 1st is gone pal.
  • -7 Hide
    Maxor127 , April 13, 2012 4:34 PM
    classzeroAnd the uneducated make remarks. Please read before open mouth.http://news.cnet.com/8301-13579_3- [...] er-iphone/

    Indeed... the ignorance and hypocrisy in the comments section is always fun and sad to read.
  • 11 Hide
    halcyon , April 13, 2012 4:36 PM
    classzeroAnd the uneducated make remarks. Please read before open mouth.http://news.cnet.com/8301-13579_3- [...] er-iphone/

    ...and how is it, precisely, that my comment would suggest to you that I'm "uneducated". Please be specific. I don't have a Phd but I do have a Master's. ...I'm just not sure what bearing my comments have on the perception of this.
  • 7 Hide
    del35 , April 13, 2012 4:41 PM
    Quote:
    How can "entrepreneurs [...] be encouraged to innovate" when there's a constant sort of "fear"


    Welcome to the environment iJail and its dumbed-down fan boys has created for technology.
  • 10 Hide
    bystander , April 13, 2012 4:43 PM
    So Apple attempting to sue Google and their partners out of business for trying to make a smartphone is being a good guy?
  • 13 Hide
    bystander , April 13, 2012 4:48 PM
    halcyonDid anyone expect "Woz" to have a different perspective? I like Apple products but I'd not go so far as to call them the "good guys" with a straight face.

    Actually I did, since Apple's co-founder screwed him out of the business.
  • -9 Hide
    halcyon , April 13, 2012 4:56 PM
    bystanderActually I did, since Apple's co-founder screwed him out of the business.

    I'm not familiar enough with the history to know whether or not "Woz" would agree with your perspective. I simply enjoy Apple's products. I don't pay much attention to all these lawsuit shenanigans because I haven't seen it affect me in any important way. Apple sues Samsung...Samsung suess Apple. Apple sues Google...the US sues Apple. on and on...on an on.

    I have a Mac Pro, a Macbook Pro, 3 iPads (in our home), 2 iPhones (in our home) and a couple iPods. ...I also have a reasonable Wintel gaming machine. Now if these lawsuits impact my ability to purchase the tech I like then I'll feel differently, but so far that's hasn't happened and I'm kinda hoping it doesn't.

    ...back to "Woz" and what's relevant to this article... My comment was made because in the few times I'd heard what he has to say about Apple and their products he's glowingly positive...based on that I'd expect him to say "Apple" is the good guy. I simply don't quite believe that.

    You didn't ask but....
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