Angelina Jolie's openness about her decision to undergo mastectomies because of the BRCA1 mutation can help inspire countless women to face this difficult decision. Yet several obstacles exist that deserve attention, concerning doctors and costs of testing.
No one wants to pay for free stuff, and why should they? However, when you buy a television, DVD player or a number of other tech devices, you may be paying more than you should. Here is a story about how consumers are quietly getting ripped off.
While we live in an era of skepticism about government and its institutions, it is important to note the important work undertaken by the Federal Trade Commission, an underappreciated regulatory body that safeguards both competition and consumers.
The costs of protectionism can be large, as economists frequently point out when discussing 20 percent tariffs in steel. For some reason they become strangely silent when it comes to patent protection that raise the price of drugs by 1,000 percent.
But what if you want to incentivize investment in bold new drugs instead of me-too drugs? What if you want to encourage research into new areas that tangibly improve people's health? Then maybe, like India, you would only grant patents when that higher standard is met.
Many iconic American corporations have invested billions of dollars and hired many of the world's best scientists to work on renewable energy breakthroughs. But these scientists are sworn to secrecy in order to protect their companies' investments.
In the vigorous, ongoing debate about the state of America's patent system -- and the state of software patents, in particular -- there are some legitimate issues that call for practical solutions, and there is a great deal of peripheral noise.
Consumer-facing, peer-to-peer commerce start-ups are hot, but how many tie-sharing services does the country really need? (Yes, there is hot competition in this space.) Ideas like these are attractive because they are easy to act on quickly.
In a unanimous vote, the Federal Trade Commission announced it has closed its investigation into Google's search practices, concluding that the evidence "does not support" an antitrust case. The FTC cannot stop here.
The USPTO has been overwhelmed by both the volume and the novelty of applications for software patents, and they can't maintain a qualified staff. Patents currently last 20 years, which is way too long in the software business.