Apple sued over multitouch patent 31 March
A Taiwanese chipmaker Elan Microelectronics is suing Apple over the use of multitouch technology in several products, including the iPhone, iPod Touch, and forthcoming iPad. They filed a complaint with the International Trade Commission accusing Apple of violating an Elan-owned patent that covers "touch-sensitive input devices with the ability to detect the simultaneous presence of two or more fingers."
Elan claims the iPhone, iPod Touch, MacBook, and Magic Mouse are in violation of Elan's patent, No. 5,825,352, and when the iPad goes on sale this Saturday, it will be too. Elan has asked the ITC to ban the import of all five devices into the U.S.
Apple sued HTC for similar reasons earlier in March this year.

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US judge rules cancer gene patent invalid 31 March
The company Myriad Genetics patented the BRCA1 and 2 genes that could be used to gauge a woman's susceptibility to certain types of breast and ovarian cancer. The American Civil Liberties Union and individual breast cancer patients took the case to the federal court, arguing that the patent stifled medical research
A US federal judge has overturned the patents on two genes linked to breast and ovarian cancer on the grounds that they are not man-made, but rather products of nature and that Myriad's work to isolate them did not transform them into new, patentable products.

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No to software patents in New Zealand - 31 March
Open source software champions have been influential in excluding software from the scope of patents in the new Patents Bill. A broad range of developers at a Computer Society meeting in Wellington hailed the change as a good thing.
The Bill now goes back to the full Parliament for its second reading. It has also been divided into two parts; the sections concerning registration of patent attorneys have been extracted into a separate Bill, which will be delayed, because of the need to co-ordinate these provisions with Australian law.

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