Michel Rocard MEP, economist and former French prime minister, has published a report on the European Software Patents Directive.
His views should be taken seriously as he is the European Parliament's draftsperson or "rapporteur" on the directive.
Hartmut Pilch of the FFII comments:
"Rocard's outline contains all the necessary ingredients for a directive that achieves what most member state governments say they want to achieve: to exclude computer programs from patentability while allowing computer-controlled technical inventions to be patented. Already in the title of his paper, Rocard proposes to replace the misleading term "computer-implemented inventions" by "computer-controlled inventions", and the report itself goes to the heart of the matter.
Rocard explains the difference between applied natural science and data processing, and, from there solves the legislative problem in a consistent and adequate manner, delivering what programmers, economists and the vast majority of companies in software and related industries want to see. It is unusual for an economist and former French prime minister to take up a fairly special, difficult-to-communicate problem with such seriousness and moral courage.
There is a Slashdot discussion on this report.
More at FFII.org