Patent issues in the LED space have been contentions and have been covered in this blog on several occasions. While genuine innovations can and should be protected, it is emerging that the Patent office is not qulafied to either understand or issue patents in this field. Color Kinetics and other such companies are constantly trying to patent broad concepts that are a kind of theft from the commons due to tons of prior art. An industry alliance has now be formed to take on this menace and protect real innovations from such predatory practices. Such practices will bring in GPL type licenses in this field as well. More details can be had here.
Previous posts that covered patent issues are
Open standards, patents and society
Patents killing science ?
Small companies fight for a foothold in white LED sector