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Wed, 28 Apr 2004

Patents, enemy of innovation

Fans of "intellectual property" constantly cry that patents stimulate innovation and are therefore a good thing. Trouble is, the evidence is often to the contrary. An excellent example is that the turned up tips of wings now common on large aircraft - these winglets cut down on drag and so increase efficiency - were patented in 1897. However, the first flight experiments weren't conducted until 1924 - after the patent had expired.

Posted at 13:04 by David Cantrell