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英语网 | 2014-08-29
  Text 2   Over the past decade, thousands of patents have been granted for what are called business methods. Amazon.com received one for its “one-click” online payment system. Merrill Lynch got legal protection for an asset allocation strategy. One inventor patented a technique for lifting a box.   Now the nation’s top patent court appears completely ready to scale back on business-method patents, which have been controversial ever since they were first authorized 10 years ago. In a move that has intellectual-property lawyers abuzz the U.S. court of Appeals for the federal circuit said it would use a particular case to conduct a broad review of business-method patents. In Bilski , as the case is known , is “a very big deal”, says Dennis’D. Crouch of the University of Missouri School of law. It “has the potential to eliminate an entire class of patents.”   Curbs on business-method claims would be a dramatic about-face; because it was the federal circuit itself that introduced such patents with its 1998 decision in the so-called state Street Bank case, approving a patent on a way of pooling mutual-fund assets. That ruling produced an explosion in business-method patent filings, initially by emerging internet companies trying to stake out exclusive pinhts to specific types of online transactions. Later, move established companies raced to add such patents to their files, if only as a defensive move against rivals that might bent them to the punch. In 2005, IBM noted in a court filing that it had been issued more than 300 business-method patents despite the fact that it questioned the legal basis for granting them. Similarly, some Wall Street investment films armed themselves with patents for financial products, even as they took positions in court cases opposing the practice.   The Bilski case involves a claimed patent on a method for hedging risk in the energy market. The Federal circuit issued an unusual order stating that the case would be heard by all 12 of the court’s judges, rather than a typical panel of three, and that one issue it wants to evaluate is whether it should” reconsider” its state street Bank ruling.   The Federal Circuit’s action comes in the wake of a series of recent decisions by the Supreme Court that has narrowed the scope of protections for patent holders. Last April, for example the justices signaled that too many patents were being upheld for “inventions” that are obvious. The judges on the Federal circuit are “reacting to the anti-patient trend at the supreme court”, says Harole C.wegner, a patent attorney and professor at Jorge Washington University Law School.   26. Business-method patents have recently aroused concern because of   [A] their limited value to business   [B] their connection with asset allocation   [C] the possible restriction on their granting   [D] the controversy over authorization   选C. 细节推理题。文章第二段首句指出,“……准备对商业方法专利进行缩减,而该类专利从其合法化的那天开始就一直充满了争议。”从此得出,现在对其进行缩减必将引起人们的“关注”。   27. Which of the following is true of the Bilski case?   [A] Its ruling complies with the court decisions   [B] It involves a very big business transaction   [C] It has been dismissed by the Federal Circuit   [D] It may change the legal practices in the U.S.   选B. 推理题。该题可以采用排除法。A、C、D选项都不符合文意。   28. The word “about-face” most probably means   [A] loss of good will   [B] increase of hostility   [C] change of attitude   [D] enhancement of dignity   选C. 词汇题。“about-face”在这里是承前启后的作用,because引导的从句是对于该词所述现象的解释,“当初就是联邦组通过的此类专利……”,而第二段提到了“现在……要缩减商业方法专利”,因此是“态度”的巨大转变。   29. We learn from the last two paragraphs that business-method patents   [A] are immune to legal challenges   [B] are often unnecessarily issued   [C] lower the esteem for patent holders   [D] increase the incidence of risks   选B.假推理题:同义替换。从“too many patents were being upheld ”中可以找到答案,而其他三个选项在最后两段都没有被提及。   30. Which of the following would be the subject of the text?   [A] A looming threat to business-method patents   [B] Protection for business-method patent holders   [C] A legal case regarding business-method patents   [D] A prevailing trend against business-method patents   选D. 主旨题。文章首段介绍了“过去10年”商业方法的专利授予状况,从第二段开始转到“现状”,同时,之后的各段均表述了联邦成员组对“商业方法专利”变化的立场。   Text 3   In his book The Tipping Point, Malcolm Aladuell argues that social epidemics are driven in large part by the acting of a tiny minority of special individuals, often called influentials, who are unusually informed, persuasive, or well-connected. The idea is intuitively compelling, but it doesn’t explain how ideas actually spread.   The supposed importance of influentials derives from a plausible sounding but largely untested theory called the “two step flow of communication”: Information flows from the media to the influentials and from them to everyone else. Marketers have embraced the two-step flow because it suggests that if they can just find and influence the influentials, those selected people will do most of the work for them. The theory also seems to explain the sudden and unexpected popularity of people was wearing, promoting or developing whatever it is before anyone else paid attention. Anecdotal evidence of this kind fits nicely with the idea that only certain special people can drive trends.   In their recent work, however, some researchers have come up with the finding that influentials have far less impact on social epidemics than is generally supposed. In fact, they don’t seem to be required of all.   The researchers’ argument stems from a simple observation about social influence, with the exception of a few celebrities like Oprah Winfrey—whose outsize presence is primarily a function of media, not interpersonal, influence—even the most influential members of a population simply don’t interact with that many others. Yet it is precisely these non-celebring influentials who, according to the two-step-flow theory, are supposed to drive social epidemics by influencing their friends and colleagues directly. For a social epidemic to occur, however, each person so affected, must then influence his or her own acquaintances, who must in turn influence theirs, and so on; and just how many others pay attention to each of these people has little to do with the initial influential. If people in the network just two degrees removed from the initial influential prove resistant, for example the cascade of change won’t propagate very far or affect many people.   Building on the basic truth about interpersonal influence, the researchers studied the dynamics of populations manipulating a number of variables relating of populations, manipulating a number of variables relating to people’s ability to influence others and their tendency to be.   31.By citing the book The Tipping Point, the author intends to   [A]analyze the consequences of social epidemics   [B]discuss influentials’ function in spreading ideas   [C]exemplify people’s intuitive response to social epidemics   [D]describe the essential characteristics of influentials.   选B. 推理题。文章开头作者介绍The Tipping Point这本书的中心思想是“一小部分名人引领了社会潮流”,但是在段末又表示“书作者的想法并不能解释思想是如何传播的”,由此引出对名人在思想传播中作用的讨论。   32.The author suggests that the “two-step-flow theory”   [A]serves as a solution to marketing problems   [B]has helped explain certain prevalent trends   [C]has won support from influentials   [D]requires solid evidence for its validity   选D.细节题。第二段的首句作者使用“a plausible sounding but largely untested theory”来修饰“two-step-flow theory”,同时第三段整段都是对名人思想传播论的否定。   33.what the researchers have observed recently shows that   [A] the power of influence goes with social interactions   [B] interpersonal links can be enhanced through the media   [C] influentials have more channels to reach the public   [D] most celebrities enjoy wide media attention   选A. 推理题。文章第四段主要表述了“社会交往的影响力”。   34.The underlined phrase “these people” in paragraph 4 refers to the ones who   [A] stay outside the network of social influence   [B] have little contact with the source of influence   [C] are influenced and then influence others   [D] are influenced by the initial influential   选C. 指代题。定位到文章第四段,前面表述的意思为,“人们受到别人影响后会进而影响后面的人”,These people所在句子的意思为,“有多少人注意这些人,他们与最初的那些名人一点关系也没有”,由此可知,那些人指的就是前文中所述的“受到别人影响后进而影响后人的人。”   35.what is the essential element in the dynamics of social influence?   [A]The eagerness to be accepted   [B]The impulse to influence others   [C]The readiness to be influenced   [D]The inclination to rely on others   选 C. 细节题。线索在文章的尾端末句“people’s ability to influence others and their tendency to be influenced”即“人们影响别人的能力及别人影响的倾向性。”,C项符合文意。