Chinese People Try To Patent Wine On ARM
The latest illustration of software patents being bad and of pure silliness is a group of Chinese people trying to obtain a patent covering Wine on ARM for having the open-source program running Windows programs on the CPU architecture popular to smart-phones.
Going back years has been work to bring Wine to the ARM architecture and its headed up a lot in recent years. Among the ambitions have been to run Windows apps with Wine on Android and Wine on ARM has been making much progress. As of this year, Wine on ARM can run basic applications like Solitaire. The upstream work for ARM support within the Wine Git repository goes back to at least 2010 with Wine 1.3.4. Lots of the initial Wine ARM work was done by André Hentschel, a German open-source developer, and it's obviously all been open-source.
Meanwhile, in a patent application from June of 2011, a group of five Chinese people are attempting to patent the process of porting Wine to ARM... The five authors of the patent application aren't involved with upstream Wine development, their patent application is one year past the dates of the first upstream commits, and in the application they are talking about porting Wine 1.3.13, which is a version of Wine that already had the first of the ARM commits.
The patent is CN102364433B and was mentioned in this week's WWN. An English translation of the patent application can be found via Google Patents. "The present invention discloses a method on ARM processors Wine transplant build tools, including: step 1, modify the Wine configuration tool to use arm-linux cross compiler and arm-linux library file to replace the X86 platform gcc compiler and libraries; Step 2, modify Wine build tool to generate the corresponding Windows applications on the target ARM processor PE format image; Step 3, modify Wine other related CPU code, so that all the Wine code for ARM processors; Step 4, the modified source code to install Wine on ARM processors. Wine of the present invention is to achieve a transplant, so that Wine can run on OMS smartphone."
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