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Blue OLED Technology Touted

A blue OLED device that exceeds the maximum theoretical efficiency is possible, which could enable commercial OLED displays that last longer. A team of researchers from Singapore's Institute of Materials Research and Engineering (IMRE) and the University of Michigan say this was made possible by changing the light-emitting layer’s thickness and optimizing the concentration of the light emitting material in the same layer. The manufacturing process required is simple and cost-effective compared to conventional OLED display technology because the researchers use low-cost printing methods. Since their initial research results were published in Advanced Functional Materials, the researchers have reported greater efficiencies from the material. They say these materials could also be used for products such as organic solar cells. (*STAR)

Study: Software Patents’ Value Negligible

A new study examines a generation of software patents and its relative benefit to the industry. James Bessen, a Boston University law professor and author of the book, Patent Failure, reviewed “changes in the patenting behavior of the software industry since the 1990s” to determine if firms do reap benefits from their patents and whether there has been a change in the risk of litigation from software patents. Bessen found that “most software firms still do not patent, most software patents are obtained by a few large firms in the software industry or in other industries, and the risk of litigation from software patents continues to increase dramatically. Given these findings, it is hard to conclude that software patents have provided a net social benefit in the software industry.” The full paper is available online through the Social Science Research Network. (SlashDot)(Bottom-Up)(“A Generation of Software Patents,” Boston Univ. School of Law, Law and Economics Research Paper No. 11-31; Berkman Center Research Publication No. 2011-04. Social Science Research Network)

The Netherlands Approves Net Neutrality

The Dutch Parliament has passed a law that, in part, prevents mobile operators from blocking or charging extra for free Internet communications services. The bill must now work through the Dutch senate, but the BBC says the bill is expected to pass. Chile approved its net neutrality legislation in July 2010, making The Netherlands the second country to adopt net neutrality. Telecommunications companies serving Dutch customers, including Vodafone and T-Mobile, have indicated consumer rates could increase if the law is passed. (BBC)(PC Magazine)(The New York Times)(The Telegraph)

US Seeks to Clarify 4G Wireless Service Claims

Newly proposed legislation in the US would help consumers make better decisions about choosing cellular telephone service. The Next Generation Wireless Disclosure Act, authored by Rep. Anna Eshoo (D-CA), would make mobile phone carriers explain how fast their 4G service really is so that consumers can make informed decisions based on full disclosure and side-by-side comparisons of services’ speeds, hidden charges, pricing, data package caps, service areas, and similar information. Although consumer groups have lauded the proposal, wireless carrier trade groups say the added regulation is unnecessary and the feds should instead be ensuring there is sufficient spectrum for new services. One of the issues that prompted the bill is that carriers use varying technologies to deliver 4G service, including LTE (Long Term Evolution), WiMax, and HSPA+ (Evolved High-Speed Packet Access), all of which are billed as 4G. If passed, the US Federal Communications Commission would be responsible for making the evaluations. (MSNBC)(National Journal)(CNNMoney)(PCWorld)

Wyoming First State to Adopt Google Cloud

Google has announced that Wyoming is the first state to migrate all of its 10,000 state employees to the Google Apps for Government. The move to the cloud, which was completed Wednesday, is projected to save the state as much as US$1 million a year. Some state officials say the figure is conservative and doesn’t factor in efficiencies created or increased productivity. The state’s legislative branch, however, voted in May to use Microsoft Exchange based on its use of the Microsoft SharePoint Legislative Management System. Other US organizations that use Google Apps for Government include the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and cities of Los Angeles and Orlando. (PC Magazine)(Wyoming Tribune)(The Official Google Blog)

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