Site of the Day: I've been following with interest the way a blog post on Uncommon Sense, one of this year's Readers' Choice Award finalists for Favorite Special-Needs Parenting Blog, has mushroomed into a major story and brought attention to parents' struggles to find communication aids that work for kids with special needs. Dana Nieder blogged about a lawsuit that threatens to take away the AAC app that's worked for her three-year-old daughter, Speak for Yourself, which Prentke Romich and Semantic Compaction Systems claim infringes on their patent (a patent they're currently using in communication devices that cost thousands of dollars instead apps that cost hundreds).
A story that puts a human face -- and a very cute human face, that of Dana's daughter Maya -- on the topic of patent law has proven irresistible to tech bloggers, and the story has shown up on PCWorld, Slashdot, and most recently the Techland section of Time.com. You can bookmark Dana's link round-up page to keep track of where the story grows from here. Whatever the merits of this particular lawsuit, I think it's clear that the genie is kind of out of the bottle on these services and devices that used to be provided in a very exclusive and expensive way. Companies that drag their feet on app development are going to find themselves worked around.
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