Amid plans to expand its hardware offerings, presumably into the smartphone space, Amazon has made a telling hire. The company appears to be fortifying its patent defenses by hiring former Intellectual Ventures senior director of acquisitions (a.k.a. patent troll) Matt Gordon. Gordon’s title at Amazon will be general manager for patent acquisitions and investments. Bloomberg counts that Amazon has been involved in five patent-related cases this year and 20 cases last year. [Source Bloomberg]