The America Invents Act changed the law to allow the public to submit examples of prior art while a patent application is being examined. And that’s why the USPTO asked us to set up Ask Patents, a Stack Exchange site where software developers like you can submit examples of prior art to stop crappy software patents even before they’re issued.
This is very interesting. There are a lot of very bizarre  patents that have been filed for software. As far as I’m concerned, I’d be okay if all software patents were disallowed. But this is a country run by lawyers who get big contributions from lawyers. It’s clearly time to take matters into our own hands, and luckily the government, along with Joel’s Stack Exchange company, are making this possible.
 Polite way of saying crappy.
For disclosure, I’ve filed a patent on some technology we are developing. While I’d hate to waste the money, I’d be happy anyway if software patents were eliminated.