We all know that the US patent system has its weaknesses: that every now and then, people get granted patents for things that are either well known or obvious. This probably explains why people keep filing dumb patents: you never know when you might hit the jackpot.
In any case, here's a doozy: following on some 40 or more years of distributed computing research, and 15+ years of commercial and academic grid computing, IBM has finally gotten around to applying for a patent on grid computing. For example:
a computer-implemented method of providing access to grid computing resources available to a plurality of users comprises receiving, from a requesting entity, a request to use a specific grid computing resource to perform a defined function; and routing the request to the specific grid computing resource in accordance with the request.
If only Condor, Globus, Sun Grid Engine, PBS, LoadLeveler (oops, that's an IBM product), Platform LSF, etc., etc., had thought of that! Wait, they did, a decade or more ago. Sigh ...