Over the past two years, I have written seven “Legally Speaking” columns and one feature article for Communications about legal issues affecting computing professionals. These writings have covered an array of legal topics including: criminal and civil liability for hackers who breach computer security systems; first amendment issues arising in computing or electronic publishing markets; intellectual property issues, such as patent protection for computer program algorithms; copyright protection for look and feel of user interfaces; what the user interface design field thinks about such protection, and various theories by which a firm might claim to own interface specification information for software systems.
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