The Open Innovation Network is a kind of NATO for companies who use Linux. IBM, Red Hat, Sony, and others pool their patents together, and if any one of them is attacked for infringement, they can use all the patents in the pool to defend themselves. Last week, they added 700 projects to the pool, for a total of about 1700. This is a big deal.
OIN is almost unknown, but it works every day to keep the world safe for open source software. The current software patent regime is irrational (literally!) and until there are meaningful reforms, the OIN’s defensive patent pooling model is one of the best available.