Were we to extend this financial maximum to the world of patents then I suspect that technological and pharmaceutical advances would move faster even than they do today. Publishers, record labels and industrial organisations would most certainly not like it but the public good would definitely be served. A new set of contracts and prices would need to be negotiated in the marketplace but these would be fairer and more transparent than the current structures and would, if handled correctly do away with the "will to pirate" altogether.

I do not claim to have solved Shem's problem or written his coda. I have tried solely to advance his work toward a viable solution.

NOTE 1. Music and film publishers have regularly made large amounts of money by changing the vector of their product (vinyl to tape to CD, VHS to DVD). Software publishers helped to further dematerialise their product by replacing printed manuals with PDF versions - to save themselves money - which of course were then just as readily pirated as the product they accompanied. With more and more software publishers moving to a totally dematerialised product, whereby the original code is downloaded rather than burnt to CD they are, one might conjecture, actually colluding in piracy.