I have a few questions about this allegation of copying:
- Does BartelsMedia hold a patent on the implementation of any of the features in which there is a claim of copying?
- Does BartelsMedia mean to suggest that nagar reverse engineered his product in order to discover proprietary secrets to enable him to duplicate the features?
- Does BartelsMedia mean to claim that nagar stole the source code to his product and used it in his?
If the answer is no, then I don't understand where the issue is.
If he did not infringe on any patents, did not use stolen code, and wrote his own implementation of these features, then he has done nothing wrong.
Having the same keyboard shortcuts for the same purpose as another program isn't stealing. If it were, then only applications created by Microsoft would be allowed to use F1 to display Help. And only 1 game in the whole world would be allowed to use the arrow keys to control direction.
Furthermore, I'd like to call your attention to a post I made awhile back concerning ideas and patents
There is a reason why the US patent office doesn't allow one to patent ideas and only allows the patenting of the implementation of ideas.
One can have or use the same idea as someone else, but when it comes to the actual implementation they can be different. Unless the source code of both applications are identical for the identical features, then there really wasn't any real copying. There could be major differences in the way it's coded to such a degree that they are actually very far from being anywhere near alike (and it is possible in theory, that the "copy" can actually be much better than the other because of the way it was implemented).
To illustrate my point, I would like to call your attention to ReactOS
which aims to duplicate Windows XP without illegally reverse engineering it and infringing on any of Microsoft's rights. It is possible to do this using clean-room design
and that is why the project continues to exist.
I would understand if Microsoft became upset about this, but legally they wouldn't have a leg to stand on if it was all done legally and not by stealing code, infringing on patents, etc.
If only 1 application was allowed to have certain features, then most of mouser's screenshot captor's features wouldn't exist, because only 1 screen capture utility would be allowed to exist with certain features.
And along the same line, should mouser follow Bill Gates around and act in the same manner that BartelsMedia has, since many new features in Vista resemble applications he had created
? (ok, that was meant to be a joke, but it is still true to a certain degree, even if it is funny)
My suggestion is for both BartelsMedia and nagar to keep working on their products to make them the best they can be and as bug free as possible and offer the best support to users as they can. because where one lacks, the other can certainly excel and that will be where the real difference in the applications will be noticeable. Running around chasing each other to bad mouth and complain will only show users that neither product should be considered and a third option would probably be best, one developed by someone with a lot more maturity.