7 NSA Patents: Cyber Manholes, Super-Shredders and More

The National Security Agency has access to the world's most incredibly sophisticated spy technology. But did you know that the NSA sometimes patents its own creations? » 2/14/14 9:00am 2/14/14 9:00am

Your Right to Record Movies Off TV Came 30 Years Ago Today

Today, DRM fears inspire a lot of jokes that reference George Orwell's 1984. But it was in that titular year, three decades ago today, that the U.S. Supreme Court reached a decision that defined and protected our right to record copyrighted material: Sony Corp. of America v. Universal City Studios, Inc., or the Betamax … » 1/17/14 6:00pm 1/17/14 6:00pm

One Man Is Resurrecting Forgotten Patents of Yore With 3D Printing

The charms of the patent office archives—and the hilariously insane inventions they contain—are well-known. But is it possible that a few of those failed entrepreneurs were actually onto something? New York lawyer Martin Galese thinks so—and he’s resurrecting the ghosts of patents past by offering 3D models of them… » 8/05/13 4:00pm 8/05/13 4:00pm

A Norse Town Has Built an Artificial Sun to Light Up Its 5-Month Night

The extreme far north (or south) isn't the only place on Earth that spends the winter locked in perpetual darkness. Beginning in September and ending in March, the Norwegian town of Rjukan is cast into a perpetual shadow. But no longer: This month, engineers are completing The Mirror Project, a system that will shed… » 7/22/13 4:00pm 7/22/13 4:00pm

You Might Unlock Google Glasses With a Simple Eye-Roll

Google has earned a patent for screen unlock that uses eye-tracking information, meaning when you finally get your hands on a pair of its augmented reality specs, you could access them with an eye roll. Just don't let your mom see you do that because she will be PISSED. » 8/07/12 11:20am 8/07/12 11:20am

Everything That's Wrong with Patent and Copyright Laws in One Brilliant …

Patent trolls are the worst. Oh wait, no, out-of-control copyright crusaders, they're the worst. In fact, the whole intellectual property system needs a total overhaul. But why? How did it come to this? Kirby Ferguson's sublime Everything Is a Remix series comes to a conclusion with this really smart explanation of… » 2/16/12 3:12pm 2/16/12 3:12pm

Samsung Follows Through on Apple Lawsuit Threat

Lawyer fight! After Apple sued Samsung up and down for alleged mobile patent infringement, the defense has wasted little time in mounting a counterattack of the "no, YOU are" variety. Samsung has filed complaints against Apple in Seoul, Tokyo, and Germany, saying that Apple in fact infringed on their patents. » 4/22/11 11:39am 4/22/11 11:39am