Many of us put our ideas in github or articles, hoping they will be just used.
However, as I have currently a tough lesson, if your idea turns out successful, you can count on patent vultures trying to monopolize it or its basic applications, variations, consequences.
How to protect from it - safely share your ideas? How to defend when protection has turned out insufficient?
In theory, making your idea public makes it "prior art" and should prevent patenting. In practice, from my experience USPTO examiner just checks US PATENTS for KEYWORDS, often with no understanding - making it extremely simple to smuggle something one has found on the internet.
The first big problem is finding out about such attempt - and it seems nearly impossible to find if they don't cite you, don't use some characteristic keywords?
If you have found it and it is not too late, you can submit e.g. third-party observation (good tutorial for USPTO).
In my situation there at least two ongoing attempts for basic application of my ANS entropy coding. One is in combination with the most basic statistical modelling (Markov): that probability of a symbol depends on the previous symbol. It was explicitly mentioned in my papers, there was much earlier implementation, used in popular CRAM DNA compressor (complaint by its author) ... but still literally description of this DNA compressor was recently given second Notice of Allowance by USPTO. The second attempt is by Google trying to monopolize image/video compression application of ANS, even though I have originally suggested it them and helped them in this adaptation for three years through their public discussion forum (my complaint).
What are other options while defending your work from patent vultures?