03.06.08

Gemini version available ♊︎

Patents Roundup. Microsoft is Faking it Again

Posted in Courtroom, Free/Libre Software, Microsoft, Patents, Tivoization at 11:58 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

For those who are curious enough to keep track of the broken USPTO, here is a quick summary.

Unnecessary, Unproductive Litigation

According to this article from the New York Times, we might — just might — see business method patents come to an end.

The death of business method patents could be felt strongest in Silicon Valley, where a first step of many entrepreneurs is to retreat with lawyers to start patenting defensible business ideas. It could also affect patent acquisition firms such as Intellectual Ventures, a firm funded by major technology companies such Microsoft, Google, Intel, Apple and Nokia, that is aggressively accumulating patent portfolios.

More about this in [1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7]. Business methods could start an avalanche.

The Qualcomm-Nokia ping-pong game is far from over.

Nokia is celebrating the fact that Qualcomm has, to date, failed to win a single case concerning GSM patents. “This is the second court to conclude that Qualcomm does not have relevant and valid GSM patents,” commented Nokia’s chief financial officer Rick Simonson. The US International Trade Commission (ITC) has already declared one of three Qualcomm patents to be invalid and rejected an appeal. Both actions concerned similar patents from the same family, as confirmed by Nokia.

Another bad idea in the making:

Starhome, which provides roaming services and converged solutions, has revealed that it has been granted a patent in the US (No. 7 333 808) for it’s Intelligent Border Roaming technology. The patent is based on Starhome’s service node architecture for controlling and steering border roaming, which prevents home network subscribers from inadvertently registering to cross-border foreign networks with strong coverage.

From Digital Majority

Digital Majority had some good picks, including:

1. Wanted: Prior Art to Bust Firepond/Polaris Patent

To bust this overly broad patent, we need to find prior art that describes a product made before 1997 in this way. Take a look at the description and please forward it to anyone you know who might have special knowledge related to natural language processing. Prior Art can be submitted here.

2. Jim Bessen on “Patent Failure”

Bessen’s presentation is titled “Patent Failure”. Bessen analyzes a broad range of evidence on the economic performance of the patent system. He finds that patents provide strong incentives for firms in a few industries, but for most firms today, patents actually discourage innovation because they fail to perform as well-defined property rights. This analysis provides a guide to policy reform.

3. How TiVo won

And now, at last, there seems to be a path to profitability. A successful courtroom defense of its software patents laid the groundwork for what many analysts believe to be a coming period of exponential growth. In January, a federal appeals court upheld that digital recorders distributed by The Dish Network (owned by EchoStar (SATS)) infringed on several Tivo patents, including one that allows viewers to simultaneously view one show while watching another.

Another good reason to promote GPLv3?

Microsoft is Faking “Open Source”

This is perhaps a little off topic, but consider the warnings we saw in the past about Microsoft hijacking and then redefining open source. This continues to become a reality.

I’m totally tortured with agonizing over Microsoft’s Singularity. See, I have a standing moral obligation with myself as follows: If Microsoft ever released a purely Open-Source or Free Software system – as defined by the Free Software Foundation, the Open Source Initiative, or common conventional wisdom – I have said (and will repeat here) that I would download it, try it out, review it, and possibly adopt it, to be treated no different from software from, for example, Red Hat Inc. or BSD.

But I’m poring over the license, and this seems like it doesn’t qualify. It seems to be proprietary with the extra feature of being able to see the source, and modify and redistribute it only in the interests of academic research, with the stipulation that:

* It allows no “activity which purpose is to procure a commercial gain to you or others.” Does blogging about it on a website with ads count? Does publishing an ebook hacking guide count?
* “That Microsoft is granted back, a non-exclusive, irrevocable, royalty-free, and sub-licensable license to, for any purpose, reproduce, publicly perform or display, install, use, modify, distribute, make and have made, sell and transfer modifications to and/or derivative works of the Software source code or data that you provide to Microsoft through the CodePlex tool or otherwise make directly available to Microsoft.”

[...]

Seriously, it could just be the case that Microsoft really wants to do the right thing, but has no idea how to go about it. But common sense is telling me that that’s a thin defense. Microsoft has two licenses approved by the OSI (MS-Pl) and (MS-Rl); and it only takes a minute to research the Free Software Foundation’s philosophy.

Microsoft knows damned good and well what an open source license looks like. And I guess I can’t kid myself about that fact, as hard as I would like to.

“Open source” becomes more diluted than ever, thanks to Microsoft which benefits from this dilution.

Share in other sites/networks: These icons link to social bookmarking sites where readers can share and discover new web pages.
  • Reddit
  • email

Decor ᶃ Gemini Space

Below is a Web proxy. We recommend getting a Gemini client/browser.

Black/white/grey bullet button This post is also available in Gemini over at this address (requires a Gemini client/browser to open).

Decor ✐ Cross-references

Black/white/grey bullet button Pages that cross-reference this one, if any exist, are listed below or will be listed below over time.

Decor ▢ Respond and Discuss

Black/white/grey bullet button If you liked this post, consider subscribing to the RSS feed or join us now at the IRC channels.

DecorWhat Else is New


  1. Links 05/02/2023: Pakistan Blocks Wikipedia, Musharraf Dies

    Links for the day



  2. IRC Proceedings: Saturday, February 04, 2023

    IRC logs for Saturday, February 04, 2023



  3. Links 04/02/2023: FOSDEM Happening and Ken Thompson in SoCal Linux Expo

    Links for the day



  4. 2023 is the Year Taxpayers' Money Goes to War and Energy Subsidies, Not Tech

    Now that a lot of powerful and omnipresent ‘tech’ (spying and policing) companies are rotting away we have golden opportunities to bring about positive change and maybe even recruit technical people for good causes



  5. Getting Back to Productive Computer Systems Would Benefit Public Health and Not Just Boost Productivity

    “Smartphoneshame” (shaming an unhealthy culture of obsession with “apps”) would potentially bring about a better, more sociable society with fewer mental health crises and higher productivity levels



  6. Links 04/02/2023: This Week in KDE and Many More Tech Layoffs

    Links for the day



  7. Dotcom Boom and Bust, Round 2

    The age of technology giants/monopolies devouring everything or military-funded (i.e. taxpayers-subsidised) surveillance/censorship tentacles, in effect privatised eyes of the state, may be ending; the United States can barely sustain that anymore and raising the debt ceiling won't solve that (buying time isn't the solution)



  8. Society Would Benefit From a Smartphoneshame Movement

    In a society plagued by blackmail, surveillance and frivolous lawsuits it is important to reconsider the notion of “smart” phone ownership; these devices give potentially authoritarian companies and governments far too much power over people (in the EU they want to introduce new legislation that would, in effect, ban Free software if it enables true privacy)



  9. IRC Proceedings: Friday, February 03, 2023

    IRC logs for Friday, February 03, 2023



  10. IRC Proceedings: Thursday, February 02, 2023

    IRC logs for Thursday, February 02, 2023



  11. Links 03/02/2023: Proton 7.0-6 Released, ScummVM 2.7 Testing

    Links for the day



  12. Links 03/02/2023: OpenSSH 9.2 and OBS Studio 29.0.1

    Links for the day



  13. Links 03/02/2023: GNU C Library 2.37

    Links for the day



  14. Sirius Finished

    Yesterday I was sent a letter approving my resignation from Sirius ‘Open Source’, two months after I had already announced that I was resigning with immediate effect; they sent an identical letter to my wife (this time, unlike before, they remembered to also change the names!!)



  15. The Collapse of Sirius in a Nutshell: How to Identify the Symptoms and Decide When to Leave

    Sirius is finished, but it's important to share the lessons learned with other people; there might be other "pretenders" out there and they need to be abandoned



  16. Links 03/02/2023: WINE 8.1 and RapidDisk 9.0.0

    Links for the day



  17. Links 02/02/2023: KDE Gear 22.12.2 and LibreOffice 7.5

    Links for the day



  18. Linux News or Marketing Platform?

    Ads everywhere: Phoronix puts them at the top, bottom, navigation bar, left, and right just to read some Microsoft junk (puff pieces about something that nobody other than Microsoft even uses); in addition there are pop-ups asking for consent to send visitors’ data to hundreds of data brokers



  19. Daily Links at Techrights Turn 15, Time to Give Them an Upgrade

    This year we have several 15-year anniversaries; one of them is Daily Links (it turned 15 earlier this week) and we've been working to improve these batches of links, making them a lot more extensive and somewhat better structured/clustered



  20. Back to Focusing on Unified Patent Court (UPC) Crimes and Illegal Patent Agenda, Including the EPO's

    The EPO's (European Patent Office, Europe's second-largest institution) violations of constitutions, laws and so on merit more coverage, seeing that what's left of the "media" not only fails to cover scandalous things but is actively cheering for criminals (in exchange for money)



  21. European Patent Office Staff Votes in Favour of Freedom of Association (97% of Voters in Support)

    The Central Staff Committee (CSC) at the EPO makes a strong case for António Campinos to stop breaking and law and actually start obeying court orders (he’s no better than Benoît Battistelli and he uses worse language already)



  22. Links 02/02/2023: Glibc 2.37 and Go 1.20

    Links for the day



  23. IRC Proceedings: Wednesday, February 01, 2023

    IRC logs for Wednesday, February 01, 2023



  24. Links 01/02/2023: Security Problems, Unrest, and More

    Links for the day



  25. Links 01/02/2023: Stables Kernels and Upcoming COSMIC From System76

    Links for the day



  26. IRC Proceedings: Tuesday, January 31, 2023

    IRC logs for Tuesday, January 31, 2023



  27. Links 31/01/2023: Catchup Again, Wayland in Xfce 4.20

    Links for the day



  28. Links 31/01/2023: elementary OS 7

    Links for the day



  29. Intimidation Against Nitrux Development Team Upsets the Community and Makes the Media Less Trustworthy

    Nitrux is being criticised for being “very unappealing”; but a look behind the scenes reveals an angry reviewer (habitual mouthpiece of the Linux Foundation and Linux foes) trying to intimidate Nitrux developers, who are unpaid volunteers rather than “corporate” developers



  30. Links 31/01/2023: GNOME 44 Wallpapers and Alpha

    Links for the day


RSS 64x64RSS Feed: subscribe to the RSS feed for regular updates

Home iconSite Wiki: You can improve this site by helping the extension of the site's content

Home iconSite Home: Background about the site and some key features in the front page

Chat iconIRC Channel: Come and chat with us in real time

Recent Posts