Limits of copyrightability, side note
This relates to my previous posts on copyrights in the sense that overly wide interpretations of trademarked names pollute the namespace, and soon it may be impossible to name a product without fear of having to rename it. Of course, for big products such as new car models a proper proximity search in trademark databases is not a big overhead, but for small companies and open source projects it is.
Also, the state earns quite a bit from trademark fees. One would assume that some of that money would be funneled into setting up a free web site that searches similar trademarks and gives a legally binding decision if it based on predefined rules can deduce that a proposed name violates no trademark. Although nowadays one can trademark colors (such as Fazer's blue in the context of sweets), sounds and music (such as the Nokia tune in the context of mobile phones), it would be sufficient to limit to textual trademarks. No trivial thing, but a reasonable research project proposal, methinks.