Can OpenAI Trademark ‘GPT’?

“ThreatGPT, MedicalGPT, DateGPT and DirtyGPT are a mere sampling of the many outfits to apply for trademarks with the United States Patent and Trademark Office in recent months,” notes TechCrunch, exploring the issue of whether OpenAI can actually trademark the phrase ‘GPT’…

Little wonder that after applying in late December for a trademark for “GPT,” which stands for “Generative Pre-trained Transformer,” OpenAI last month petitioned the USPTO to speed up the process, citing the “myriad infringements and counterfeit apps” beginning to spring into existence. Unfortunately for OpenAI, its petition was dismissed last week… Given the rest of the queue in which OpenAI finds itself, that means a decision could take up to five more months, says Jefferson Scher, a partner in the intellectual property group of Carr & Ferrell and chair of the firm’s trademark practice group. Even then, the outcome isn’t assured, Scher explains… [H]elpful, says Scher, is the fact that OpenAI has been using “GPT” for years, having released its original Generative Pre-trained Transformer model, or GPT-1, back in October 2018…

Even if a USPTO examiner has no problem with OpenAI’s application, it will be moved afterward to a so-called opposition period, where other market participants can argue why the agency should deny the “GPT” trademark. Scher describes what would follow this way: In the case of OpenAI, an opposer would challenge Open AI’s position that “GPT” is proprietary and that the public perceives it as such instead of perceiving the acronym to pertain to generative AI more broadly…

It all begs the question of why the company didn’t move to protect “GPT” sooner. Here, Scher speculates that the company was “probably caught off guard” by its own success… Another wrinkle here is that OpenAI may soon be so famous that its renown becomes a dominant factor, says Scher. While one doesn’t need to be famous to secure a trademark, once an outfit is widely enough recognized, it receives protection that extends far beyond its sphere. Rolex is too famous a trademark to be used on anything else, for instance.

Thanks to Slashdot reader rolodexter for sharing the article.

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Red Hat’s 30th Anniversary: How a Microsoft Competitor Rose from an Apartment-Based Startup

For Red Hat’s 30th anniversary, North Carolina’s News & Observer newspaper ran a special four-part series of articles.
In the first article Red Hat co-founder Bob Young remembers Red Hat’s first big breakthrough: winning InfoWorld’s “OS of the Year” award in 1998 — at a time when Microsoft’s Windows controlled 85% of the market.
“How is that possible,” Young said, “that one of the world’s biggest technology companies, on this strategically critical product, loses the product of the year to a company with 50 employees in the tobacco fields of North Carolina?” The answer, he would tell the many reporters who suddenly wanted to learn about his upstart company, strikes at “the beauty” of open-source software.
“Our engineering team is an order of magnitude bigger than Microsoft’s engineering team on Windows, and I don’t really care how many people they have,” Young would say. “Like they may have thousands of the smartest operating system engineers that they could scour the planet for, and we had 10,000 engineers by comparison….”

Young was a 40-year-old Canadian computer equipment salesperson with a software catalog when he noticed what Marc Ewing was doing. [Ewing was a recent college graduate bored with his two-month job at IBM, selling customized Linux as a side hustle.] It’s pretty primitive, but it’s going in the right direction, Young thought. He began reselling Ewing’s Red Hat product. Eventually, he called Ewing, and the two met at a tech conference in New York City. “I needed a product, and Marc needed some marketing help,” said Young, who was living in Connecticut at the time. “So we put our two little businesses together.”

Red Hat incorporated in March 1993, with the earliest employees operating the nascent business out of Ewing’s Durham apartment. Eventually, the landlord discovered what they were doing and kicked them out.
The four articles capture the highlights. (“A visual effects group used its Linux 4.1 to design parts of the 1997 film Titanic.”) And it doesn’t leave out Red Hat’s skirmishes with Microsoft. (“Microsoft was owned by the richest person in the world. Red Hat engineers were still linking servers together with extension cords. “) “We were changing the industry and a lot of companies were mad at us,” says Michael Ferris, Red Hat’s VP of corporate development/strategy. Soon there were corporate partnerships with Netscape, Intel, Hewlett-Packard, Compaq, Dell, and IBM — and when Red Hat finally goes public in 1999, its stock sees the eighth-largest first-day gain in Wall Street history, rising in value in days to over $7 billion and “making overnight millionaires of its earliest employees.”

But there’s also inspiring details like the quote painted on the wall of Red Hat’s headquarters in Durham: “Every revolution was first a thought in one man’s mind; and when the same thought occurs to another man, it is the key to that era…” It’s fun to see the story told by a local newspaper, with subheadings like “It started with a student from Finland” and “Red Hat takes on the Microsoft Goliath.”

Something I’d never thought of. 2001’s 9/11 terrorist attack on the World Trade Center “destroyed the principal data centers of many Wall Street investment banks, which were housed in the twin towers. With their computers wiped out, financial institutions had to choose whether to rebuild with standard proprietary software or the emergent open source. Many picked the latter.” And by the mid-2000s, “Red Hat was the world’s largest provider of Linux…’ according to part two of the series. “Soon, Red Hat was servicing more than 90% of Fortune 500 companies.”
By then, even the most vehement former critics were amenable to Red Hat’s kind of software. Microsoft had begun to integrate open source into its core operations. “Microsoft was on the wrong side of history when open source exploded at the beginning of the century, and I can say that about me personally,” Microsoft President Brad Smith later said.
In the 2010s, “open source has won” became a popular tagline among programmers. After years of fighting for legitimacy, former Red Hat executives said victory felt good. “There was never gloating,” Tiemann said.

“But there was always pride.”
In 2017 Red Hat’s CEO answered questions from Slashdot’s readers.

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Six Months Later, Poker Player Garrett Adelstein Still Thinks He Was Cheated

In October professional poker player Garrett Adelstein lost to a relative newcomer. Last month 15,000 viewers tuned in for his first new public interview, Poker News reports. Adelstein “reiterated his confidence that he was cheated,” and said he will not fund the $135,000 the newcomer gave hiim as a peace offering.

[Newcomer Robbi Jade Lew] denied cheating and Hustler’s third-party investigation concluded there was “no evidence of wrongdoing.” Early in the two-hour interview, Polk asked his guest if he still feels the same about what went down on that memorable evening. “In essence, I stand completely by the statement I made. I think it’s extremely likely that I was cheated,” the high-stakes pro responded… Adelstein said that Lew “has a lot of balls” to return to live-stream poker after, as he claims, cheating him out of a massive pot…

Over the past six months, numerous poker fans have called for Adelstein to return [the $135,000] to, as they believe, its rightful owner. He instead donated it to a charity. But still many believe the right decision is for him to give it back to Lew. Polk asked him if he would do so. “No, I will not be refunding Robbi the money, period. I am extremely confident I was cheated in this hand,” Adelstein defiantly stated. Adelstein then pleaded with those who are on “Team Robbi” to put themselves in his shoes and and think about how they’d react if they felt they were cheated at the poker table.

The next week — on April 1st — Poker News jokingly reported that Robbi Jade Lew had published a new book titled If I Did It..

The April Fool’s day satire quotes Robbi Jade Lew as saying “I thought it would be fun to write a book about how I would have cheated if I’d actually done it. Which I didn’t….”

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Why There’s No Room For Suburbs In Open-World Games

VICE’s Ade Adeniji booted up The Crew 2, GTA V, GTA San Andreas, Saints Row, and Watch Dogs 2, and noticed a interesting pattern: there are no suburbs to be seen. “We are transported to major cities and vast countrysides, but nothing that really speaks to the in between — to the suburbs,” writes Adeniji. “[H]ow can open world games leave out a space that we fundamentally see as Americana? Is this about design choices and constraints, or does it speak to something deeper about how we really view American suburbs — and how desperately we want to escape them?” Here’s an excerpt from the report: I figured I would first take my suburbia question to someone who has been creating games since the early 1970s. Don Daglow, pioneer of the MMORPG genre with Neverwinter Nights, broke down his answer into three parts: scale, visual interest, and stereotypes. In terms of scale, suburbs typically have lots of smaller, more repetitive environmental elements when compared to cities. Think strip malls and identical homes versus the Statue of Liberty and the Empire State Building. “Big objects in the environment create vertical movement opportunities as well as horizontal movement in 3D spaces. You can support superhero skills, think Spider Man, and jumping, think early Assassins Creed.” Daglow said. “Godzilla never attacked a small suburb on the rail line north of Tokyo. Why would he waste his time there when there’s so much more to chomp downtown?”

Lazlow Jones, voice of GTA III’s Chatterbox FM and a longtime director, writer, and producer at Rockstar Games, agreed. But Rockstar itself made a gradual progression from the chaotic cities of GTA to the open natural worlds of Red Dead. Then the company brought the two together in GTA V. “When I was at Rockstar, we started off focusing on open world games set in urban areas because it gave us great density,” Lazlow began. “But over the years we expanded to rural environments while keeping them interesting and engaging.” […] Carly Kocurek, who teaches in the Game Design and Experiential Media program at Illinois Tech, says suburbs operate in the realm of “perceived beigeness” making it hard to imagine them as settings for the kinds of stories and worlds we see most often in open world games. To the extent that suburbia does show up strongly, these spaces often serve as a starting or transition point for a character, akin to maybe the first 10 minutes of a film, or the movie’s midpoint.

There are other design reasons why suburbs don’t feature prominently in video games and why sparse areas away from intriguing points of interest are often the first to get cut. “You’re really trying to compress a massive space in real life, into a virtual space which is actually really small. It’s like taking something and cutting it down by 10x,” explained Will Harris, who led the open world design team at Light Speed LA. Harris says that in world building, one of the first steps is thinking about defining features. What makes Chicago, for instance, feel different than Washington D.C.? Huge landmarks immediately orient us in a specific space and differentiate it from others. And woe unto you if you do try to architect suburbs in large numbers. Developers could try to build out distinct houses, began Erik Villarreal, an environmental artist at Visual Concepts/2K. “But this requires a developer to create homes that stand out from each other, which can be time consuming and tie up a lot of resources,” he said. Harris adds that there are only so many mechanics in sandbox gameplay and design. He calls the suburbs “interstitial spaces.” But the larger these spaces become, the more unwieldy, and the more quickly the player realizes that these spaces are superficial. We’ve all had the frustrating experience in gaming where we reach a certain part of a map, but then discover there’s nothing actually to do there. “So the Staten Island kit gets vaporized. We trim the fat.” Harris says.

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New Intel Linux Graphics Driver Patches Released, Up To 10-15% Better Performance

A new set of patches have been released for the Intel Linux graphics driver that “can provide 10-15% better performance when operating in the tuned mode,” reports Phoronix. From the report: The set of Intel i915 Linux kernel graphics driver patches are about exposing the Intel RPS (Requested Power State) up/down thresholds. Right now the Intel Linux kernel driver has static values set for the up/down thresholds between power states while these patches would make them dynamically configurable by user-space. Google engineer Syed Faaiz Hussain raised the issue that they experimented with the Intel RPS tuning and were able to manage up to 15% better performance. With Counter-Strike: Global Offensive with OpenGL was a 14.5% boost, CS:GO with Vulkan was 12.9% faster, and Civilization VI with OpenGL was 11% faster while Strange Brigade was unchanged. No other game numbers were provided.

But as this is about changing the threshold for how aggressively the Intel graphics hardware switches power states, the proposed patches leave it up to user-space to adjust the thresholds as they wish. Google engineers are interested in hooking this into Feral’s GameMode so that the values could be automatically tuned when launching games and then returning to their former state when done gaming, in order to maximize battery life / power efficiency. The only downside with these current patches are that they work only for non-GuC based platforms… So the latest Alder/Raptor Lake notebooks as well as Intel DG2/Alchemist discrete graphics currently aren’t able to make use of this tuning option.

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Brit Fusion Magnets Set For US Gamma Ray Bombardment Test

UK fusion company Tokamak Energy claims to have made a breakthrough in fusion magnets, developing technology capable of withstanding the electromagnetic bombardment from a fusion reaction while holding the reaction in place. It plans to put its technology to the test at a U.S. gamma ray facility in the desert. The Register reports: At its Oxford headquarters, Tokamak Energy, which is collaborating with the UK government’s nuclear fusion program, has built a specialist gamma radiation cryostat system, designed around a vacuum device which insulates the magnets from fusion energy. The system is now set to be disassembled, shipped, and rebuilt at the Gamma Irradiation Facility based at the US Department of Energy’s Sandia Laboratories in Albuquerque, New Mexico.

Tokamak Energy said Sandia was one of the few places in the world capable of housing the system while exposing the company’s superconducting magnets to gamma radiation comparable with the expected emissions of a fusion power plant. Research and analysis on sets of individual magnets will run for six months at the New Mexico facility, which is so powerful it can do a 60-year lifetime test in just two weeks, Tokamak Energy said. The company recently signed an agreement with UK Atomic Energy Authority (UKAEA) to jointly develop technology, and share resources and equipment for the development of a Spherical Tokamak for Energy Production (STEP).

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Intel Reports Largest Quarterly Loss In Company History

In the company’s first-quarter earnings results (PDF) on Wednesday, Intel reported a 133% annual reduction in earnings per share. “Revenue dropped nearly 36% year over year to $11.7 billion,” adds CNBC. From the report: In the first quarter, Intel swung to a net loss of $2.8 billion, or 66 cents per share, from a net profit of $8.1 billion, or $1.98 per share, last year. Excluding the impact of inventory restructuring, a recent change to employee stock options and other acquisition-related charges, Intel said it lost 4 cents a share, which was a narrower loss than analyst had expected. Revenue decreased to $11.7 billion from $18.4 billion a year ago.

It’s the fifth consecutive quarter of falling sales for the semiconductor giant and the second consecutive quarter of losses. It’s also Intel’s largest quarterly loss of all time, beating out the fourth quarter of 2017, when it lost $687 million. Intel hopes that by 2026 that it can manufacture chips as advanced as those made by TSMC in Taiwan, and it can compete for custom work like Apple’s A-series chips in iPhones. Intel said on Thursday it was still on track to hit that goal.

Intel’s Client Computing group, which includes the chips that power the majority of desktop and laptop Windows PCs, reported $5.8 billion in revenue, down 38% on an annual basis. Intel’s server chip division, under its Data Center and AI segment suffered an even worse decline, falling 39% to $3.7 billion. Its smallest full line of business, Network and Edge, posted $1.5 billion in sales, down 30% from the same time last year. One bright spot was Mobileye, which went public last year but is still controlled by Intel. Mobileye makes systems and software for self-driving cars, and reported 16% sales growth to $458 million.

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Tokyo Has 20x As Much Wi-Fi As It Needs

An anonymous reader quotes a report from The Register: Tokyo has five million Wi-Fi access points — and that’s 20 times what the city needs, because they’re reserved for private use, according to NTT. The Japanese tech giant proposes sharing the fleet to cope with increased demand for wireless comms without adding more hardware. NTT says it’s successfully tested network sharing with a scheme that starts by asking operators of Wi-Fi access points or other connections if they’re open to sharing their bandwidth and allowing random netizens to connect. In return they get a share of revenue from those connections.

Under the scheme, netizens search for available networks and, as they connect, a contract would be executed allowing a link to be made. That contract would use Ethereum Proof of Authority to verify identities and initiate the back-end billing arrangements before allowing signed-up users and devices to join private networks. The operator of the Wi-Fi access point gets paid, the punter gets a connection, and everything’s on a blockchain so the results can be read for eternity. […] If this all scales, NTT estimates Tokyo won’t need to add any more Wi-Fi access points or private 5G cells, even as demand for connectivity increases. The company also suggests it can enable networks to scale without requiring commensurate increases in energy consumption, and that spectrum will also be freed for other uses.

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