Language Selection

English French German Italian Portuguese Spanish

Living will software sales surge

Filed under
Software

Sales of computer software to create living wills are surging amid the high-profile debate over Terri Schiavo, the severely brain-damaged Florida woman who died Thursday.

"We've never seen sales like this," said Clark Miller, a spokesman for Nolo.com Inc., the creator of Quicken WillMaker Plus 2005. "The living will has simply become a part of American consciousness in a way it hadn't been before."

WillMaker Plus sales rose 63 percent in the five days after March 18, when Schiavo's feeding tube was removed, compared to the prior five days. At Kansas City-based H&R Block Inc., spokesman Tom Linafelt said sales of the company's WILLPower program jumped 95 percent last week. Other software makers - including Carson, Calif.-based Cosmi Corp. and Socrates Media LLC - also reported spikes in sales.

Software industry analyst Chris Swenson of research firm NPD Group said he doesn't believe the spike was a result of the Schiavo case, but rather of the release cycle of titles in the legal software category.

Debra Speyer, a Philadelphia attorney who does estate planning, said software is fine, but she's receiving nearly 10 times as many calls from people who feel they need an adviser to more fully explain the document.

Living wills can be obtained cheaply or free from numerous sources and generally don't require an attorney.

Full Story.

More in Tux Machines

Firefox OS media-casting stick strikes Kickstarter gold

The first Firefox OS based media player has arrived on Kickstarter, in the form of a $25 open-spec HDMI stick that supports Chromecast-like content casting. The Matchstick, which has already zoomed past its Kickstarter campaign’s $100,000 funding goal, with 28 days still remaining, was teased back in June by Mozilla developer evangelist Christian Heilmann. The unnamed prototype was billed as an open source HDMI stick that runs Mozilla’s Linux-based Firefox OS and offers casting capabilities. Few details were revealed at the time except that the device used the same DIAL (DIscovery And Launch) media-casting protocol created by Netflix and popularized by Google’s Chromecast. Read more

Open source history, present day, and licensing

Looking at open source softwares particularly, this is a fact that is probably useful to you if you are thinking about business models, many people don't care about it anymore. We talk about FOSS, Free and Open Source Software, but if we really are strict there's a difference between free software and open source software. On the left, I have free software which most typically is GPL software. Software where the license insures freedom. It gives freedoms to you as a user, but it also requires that the freedoms are maintained. On the right-hand side, you have open source software which is open for all, but it also allows you to close it. So here we come back to the famous clause of the GPL license, the reciprocity requirement which says, "If I am open, you need to be open." So software that comes under the GPL license carries with it something that other people call a virus. I call it a blessing because I think it's great if all software becomes open. Read more

Leftovers: Software

Proprietary

today's howtos