Sadly the patent system does not seem to work that way. One of the big ways to make a patent infinitely long is to add an 'invention' to an existing patented item. The first patent may expire but your additional patent still covers the method where it relates to your extension of the invention. Rinse and repeat.
And the one issue is that while many developers will say "oh we aren't in the US so we do not have to worry..." they forget about reciprocal treaties their nation may have signed with the US which basically covers their works anyway :(.