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JANUARY 22, 2009


Software Scan

The President's Column

Hi and welcome to the inaugural issue of Software Scan, a newsletter from SAFE Corporation that promises to provide the best and latest information regarding the complex issues surrounding software plagiarism, software intellectual property, IP litigation, and various software analysis tools.

In the Scanning IP section of this newsletter we talk about laws, regulations, and cases involving software intellectual property litigation. In the Scanning Tools section, we talk about laws, regulations, and cases involving intellectual property litigation.

Send me your comments and critiques. I'm always interested in hearing from you.


Bob Zeidman
President, SAFE Corporation

Scanning IP

Is Software Still Patentable?
One of the most important patent rulings in recent history is the ruling by the Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit (CAFC) in the case of In Re Bernard L. Bilski and Rand A. Warsaw. In 1998, the CAFC ruled in the case of State Street Bank & Trust v. Signature Financial Group that software was patentable as long as it produced a "useful, concrete, and tangible result." In Bilski, the CAFC has narrowed software patentability by requiring that "(1) it is tied to a particular machine or apparatus, or (2) it transforms a particular article into a different state or thing." This new "machine of transformation" requirement invalidated Bilski's patent, which was not explicitly for software but for a business method of hedging risks in commodities trading. While software patents are still valid, this new test puts more restrictions on them, or at least on how the patent claims are written. For more detailed information, I recommend the following articles:

  1. Patently-O Blog
  2. United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit
  3. Wikipedia article

Advanced Tools to Detect Software Plagiarism and IP Theft

A sophisticated set of tools for analyzing software source code and object code including:

Check binary object code for plagiarism.

Cross check source code for plagiarism.

Compare source code to find differences and measure changes.

The premiere tool for pinpointing copying.

Scour the Internet for plagiarized code.

Turbo charge your analysis on a supercomputer grid.

Get Smart

SAFE offers training at our facility or yours. Contact us to make arrangements:

MCLE credit in software IP

CodeSuite certification

New CodeSuite Release

SAFE has just released CodeSuite version 3.3. In addition to CodeCross, the new tool for finding copied nonfunctional source code, it also allows filtering of databases using Internet hits found from SourceDetective. It also has easier navigating of detailed reports. Download it here for free.

Scanning Tools

CodeCross Tool Just Released for Detecting Software IP Theft and Infringement
SAFE has just released a new tool for comparing computer code to detect copyright infringement and trade secret theft. CodeCross™ finds traces of nonfunctional source code that have been copied from one program to another.

According to Nikolaus Baer at Zeidman Consulting, a SAFE Corporation customer, "I suggested the concept of CodeCross after working on cases where stolen code had nonfunctional remnants in another party's code. SAFE developed the tool quickly and it works great. In one case I found traces of copied code that had previously gone undetected."

CodeCross is available with CodeSuite 3.2.0 and can be downloaded for free from the SAFE Corporation website.

This newsletter is not legal advice. Views expressed herein should be checked for accuracy and current applicability.
Copyright 2009 Software Analysis & Forensic Engineering Corporation