Trend Micro is suing Barracuda Networks over its use of ClamAV an open source AV program. This recent case is illustrative of the problems with software patents in the U.S. There are so many patents especially in the area of software that are obvious and should never be patented. This one seems related to the combination of virus scanning and firewalls which seems pretty obvious. This blog post points to many of the issues and discusses legislative initiatives. Another solution could be peer review.