Steffy reports that "companies ... are getting more aggressive in cases involving employee ideas -- officially dubbed 'intellectual property' -- as they fight to keep knowledge they deem vital from falling into competitors' hands." She focuses on the case of Evan Brown, a former Alcatel employee who refused to divulge an idea for software that he said came from his own efforts outside of the workplace. The problem for courts faced with these cases is distinguishing "between confidential information and general knowledge."
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