Minneapolis patent attorney Mark Stignani discusses open source and how it is incorporated into software.
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Probably the most graphic example of how software and open source software merge together is really to envision software code as a series of Lego blocks. So, you’ve got red blocks which comprise your proprietary software that you’re going to have value for, and the yellow blocks which are open source, which you’ve paid nothing for, but may be virally infected with some sort of license that would cause problems. So, if you envision us building a red wall of red blocks and here and there you’re plugging in a yellow block where it makes sense. But yet, one of those yellow blocks might be infected, so it has the effect of turning your entire block wall yellow for the purposes of that license. And then also, then either zeroing out or significantly diminishing the intellectual property of that software.