Python style: exceptions vs. sys.exit()
steve at REMOVE-THIS-cybersource.com.au
Sat Oct 4 05:40:14 CEST 2008
On Fri, 03 Oct 2008 09:15:35 -0500, Grant Edwards wrote:
> On 2008-10-03, greg <greg at cosc.canterbury.ac.nz> wrote:
>> Lawrence D'Oliveiro wrote:
>>> In message <00f15d41$0$20617$c3e8da3 at news.astraweb.com>, Steven
>>> D'Aprano wrote:
>>> > (2) Even when the source is available, it is sometimes a legal trap
>>> > to read it with respect to patents and copyright.
>>> That's not how patents work.
>> I don't think that's how copyrights work either. As far as I know,
>> whether something is deemed a derivative work is judged on the basis of
>> how similar it is to another work, not whether its author had knowledge
>> of the other work. As long as you express an idea in an original way,
>> it shouldn't matter where you got the idea from.
> IANAL, but IIRC it does matter when it comes to establishing punative
> damages. If you knowingly and intentionally infringe a patent, I think
> you're libel for more damages than if you accidentally re-invent
> something. At least that's what I was told...
Yes. Under US Patent Law, if you intentionally infringe a patent you are
liable (not libel, which is like slander) to triple damages.
Unfortunately the meaning of "intentionally" is horribly broad: if you do
a patent search and find a patent which you don't think covers your
invention, but a court later decides that it does, that counts as
intentional infringement. But if you don't do a patent search at all, any
such infringement must be accidental.
Yes, this is incredibly broken. Economists and lawyers call it a
"Finally, the provision for treble damages for willful infringement
actually creates a perverse incentive not to know about patents that
might be infringed. If a search is undertaken and knowledge of potential
infringement is obtained, then the willfulness provision will be
triggered and the infringer may be liable for treble damages. On the
other hand, without a search there can be no knowledge, and no willful
Under Germany patent law, there is no difference in damages for
intentional, negligent or accidental infringement, hence no punitive
damages and no triple punishment for doing a patent search:
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