EditorsAbout the SiteComes vs. MicrosoftUsing This Web SiteSite ArchivesCredibility IndexOOXMLOpenDocumentPatentsNovellNews DigestSite NewsRSS

02.22.10

Patents Roundup: Amazon, Centrify, Microsoft, TecSec, and Bilski

Posted in GNU/Linux, IBM, Law, Microsoft, Patents at 10:25 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Summary: This is a set of news links about patents and their injustices

Looking out for Bilski: software patents v. FOSS (see our Bilski index)

This period also saw the rise of FOSS as a threat to monopolistic proprietary software companies. The rule of required sharing of computer program source code in FOSS, and creation of a “protected commons” for the free exchange of ideas embodied in program source code eliminated the need for patents. “Copyleft” sharing, under the GNU General Public License (“GPL”) and similar licenses, helped firms to increase their levels of investment in cooperative production, and to exchange ideas, secure in the knowledge that those investments would not be appropriated by others claiming exclusive rights.

But companies in the business of acquiring patents merely to license or sue parties refusing to pay for a license, called “patent trolls,” also sprang up in great numbers. They imposed license fees that FOSS projects could not afford under terms that unacceptably conflicted with FOSS licenses. They exploited companies’ willingness to pay license fees for patent claims of questionable validity, in order to avoid the high costs of patent litigation.

Usually, these trolls prefer to bite deep-pocketed businesses and not small FOSS distributors, much less non-profit communities of programmers. Proprietary software giants charge their customers high prices, in effect collecting in advance any patent royalties they may be required to pay to trolls. Thus, patent rent is included in the cost of proprietary products: Microsoft and similar companies may sting from reduction of their profits, but their users have been stung in advance. Moreover, cross-licensing works well for them, as they have or can build a portfolio of patents with which to buy others’ claims without using money. But the same approach is not available to FOSS communities, which in general do not seek patents; their users thus risk ending up as casualties in the war.

ITC Becomes Battleground in Nokia-Apple Patent Dispute (more on the ITC’s embargoes right here)

The United States International Trade Commission (ITC) has agreed to investigate Apple’s patent claims against Nokia, after already agreeing last month to do the same for Nokia’s patent claims against Apple. With dueling lawsuits pending in federal court over the patent disputes, the ITC has become the battlefield du jour.

USPTO’s 1-Click Indecisiveness Enters 5th Year (FFII’s president shares this link which he says contains “Amazon testimony in front of Congress on 1-click patent, software patents and patent trolls”)

theodp writes “When it comes to Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos’ 1-Click patent, the USPTO is an agency that just can’t say no. Or yes. It’s now been 4+ years since actor Peter Calveley submitted prior art that triggered a USPTO reexamination of the 1-Click patent. Still no ‘final answer’ from the USPTO, although an Examiner recently issued yet another Final Rejection of 1-Click related claims (pdf), admonishing Amazon for making him ‘sift through hundreds of submitted references to identify what applicant allegedly has already submitted,’ which he complained is ‘adding an undue burden’ to his workload. Looks like Bezos’ 2000 pledge of ‘less work for the overworked Patent and Trademark Office’ isn’t working out so well in practice. Not too surprising — after all, Amazon did inform Congress that it ‘has modified its specific [patent] reform proposals from the year 2000.’”

Centrify Suite 2010 Expands Ability to Ensure Higher Levels of Trust, Control and Compliance in the Data Center [1, 2] (more on the latest from Centrify, which is putting Microsoft patents in GNU/Linux)

Pfizer, Microsoft, Viacom: Intellectual Property

Microsoft Corp., the world’s largest software company, received a patent for a method of encoding and transmitting network data over a satellite network.

According to patent 7,644,092, one of 4,484 U.S. patents issued yesterday, the technology would enable Internet protocol data packets of variable length to be encoded and sent through a fixed-length multi-packet transport system.

Nazomi sues Amazon, Microsoft, Nokia over Java

California-based Nazomi late yesterday sued several tech firms, including Amazon, Microsoft and Nokia, for allegedly violating patents it owns on translating Java code to specific devices. Filed in a Los Angeles court, the lawsuit complains that the three main firms as well as Garmin, Iomega, Sling, Vizio and Western Digital all have devices that supposedly copy its techniques. These include the Kindle and Zune as well as less common devices like the Slingbox or Nokia’s tablet computers.

Nokia, Microsoft, Amazon Sued on Translation Patents (Microsoft faces patent-related legal action from over 50 directions, including Emblaze)

Nokia Corp., Microsoft Corp., and Amazon.com Inc. were sued by a closely held company which claims they used two patents used for translating Java code for specific computers.

Nazomi Communications Inc. claims in the suit, filed yesterday in federal court in Los Angeles, that each of the companies sells consumer electronics that infringe its patents. The suit is seeking an order stopping the infringement and unspecified damages.

Cognition In Licensing Deal With Microsoft

The firm–which is headed by Scott Jarus–said it has licensed some of its proprietary semantic technologies to Microsoft Corp.

TecSec Aims Suits at IBM, Cisco, eBay (covered the other day, as the situation is akin to that of Eolas [1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8])

TecSec, a closely held firm near Washington D.C., filed patent suits against IBM, Cisco, Sun Microsystems and a host of other tech companies after recently settling one with Microsoft.

[Expired patents]

People are increasingly filing lawsuits over expired patents. An engineer’s claim against Sigma-Aldrich, a chemical company, is the twelfth such claim filed this year in courts covered by Courthouse News. Lawsuits over labels marked with expired patents are not a new cause of action, but the sudden surge in such claims is new.

Harold Josephs sued Sigma-Aldrich in Detroit Federal Court on Tuesday, citing seven chemical products he claims the company falsely labels as patented, though the patents have expired.

Sony seeks ‘universal console controller’ patent (prior art, anyone?)

It’s perhaps a step too far to say that just because Sony has applied for a US patent that covers a “universal game console controller” that it’s actually developing one with a view to bringing such a product to market.

Share in other sites/networks: These icons link to social bookmarking sites where readers can share and discover new web pages.
  • Reddit
  • email
  • Google Bookmarks
  • Ask
  • Digg
  • Mixx
  • Slashdot
  • StumbleUpon
  • Alltagz
  • BarraPunto
  • blinkbits
  • BlinkList
  • Bloglines
  • blogmarks
  • BlogMemes
  • Fark
  • Gwar
  • Klickts

If you liked this post, consider subscribing to the RSS feed or join us now at the IRC channels.

Pages that cross-reference this one

What Else is New


  1. Bill Gates' Personal Engineer Rick Jones is Connected to Other Child Pornographers. One Key Contact Works (or Worked) Indirectly for Microsoft.

    MagicHour listed Microsoft among their clients, as we noted before, and the full (redacted for child porn reasons) name is Brett Paine. We had reached out to the employer (several of us, separately), but we never received any reply.



  2. Links 3/8/2020: Linux 5.8, GNU Linux-libre 5.8, Libinput 1.16, Rust 1.45.2, Julia 1.5

    Links for the day



  3. IRC Proceedings: Sunday, August 02, 2020

    IRC logs for Sunday, August 02, 2020



  4. [Meme] Is It Not a Layoffs Round When You Rebrand It?

    More and more Microsoft layoffs; but the media is hardly interested in reporting those and/or analysing the growing scale of the layoffs (about half a dozen rounds of layoffs this summer alone)



  5. IBM is Already Gutting Red Hat and Firing Employees Without Warning, Jim Whitehurst Isn't Even Using GNU/Linux

    The situation at Red Hat isn’t good, employee morale is very low, and yet — perhaps unsurprisingly — nobody seems to be talking about it (at least not in the mainstream media)



  6. Microsoft Lays Off Many More Workers in the Advertising Division/s and Terminates Products While the Press is Distracted by TikTok Rumours

    Microsoft is laying off a huge number of workers without properly reporting these and whilst exploring ways to divert attention away from those layoffs



  7. Links 2/8/2020: Wine-Staging 5.14, VokoscreenNG 3.0.5

    Links for the day



  8. IBM and the Bomb - Part VI: Diplomacy Replaced With 'Trade' (Money Over Politics), or How Watson Jr. Was Sold to the Public, in the Same Way His Father (IBM Co-founder) Sold His Business Relationship With Dictators Like Hitler

    Sometimes people are led to believe that corporations directly and indirectly run their country; judging by the events of 4 decades ago (IBM chief becoming the American representative in Russia/Soviet Union), this is hardly a new thing and it's not a myth, either



  9. IBM and the Bomb - Part V: Arms Control by Company That Profits From Nuclear Arms? World War II Mistakes Repeated?

    A decade after the end of the deadliest war his father died and two decades later he repeated the same mistake — the error of conflating business with politics, as if maximising revenue would miraculously achieve the best outcome for nations as well



  10. IRC Proceedings: Saturday, August 01, 2020

    IRC logs for Saturday, August 01, 2020



  11. Links 2/8/2020: Nitrux 1.3.1, Debian GNU/Linux 10.5 “Buster” and Wine 5.14 Released

    Links for the day



  12. [Meme] Privilege: When They're Born Into Money That Means They Know Everything About Anything

    Tens of thousands of nuclear weapons were in 'safe hands' because rich kid Tom was representing the United States in Russia (USSR at the time), having proven his skills by being born to the man who had met Hitler and made lots of money in the Third Reich



  13. IBM and the Bomb - Part IV: IBM's Watson Came Under Fire for Representing the U.S. in U.S.S.R./Russia With No Qualifications or Any Relevant Experience

    There was certainly resistance to "Mr. rich man" Watson Jr. becoming a US diplomat owing to privilege (born into the 'right' family) rather than experience and/or political track record, symbolising a sort of "revolving doors" phenomenon -- namely overlap between business and politics, or money and power, respectively



  14. IBM Loves Power (and Nuclear POWER, or Expensive OpenPOWER) More Than It Loves GNU/Linux

    As we noted last week, IBM is very close to Modi because it is moving a lot of its workforce to India and this can become a future liability to IBM’s reputation (or lack thereof) as a tolerant firm



  15. IBM and the Bomb - Part III: IBM's Watson Jr. Rose From Business V.I.P. to U.S. Ambassador in the Soviet Union During the Cold War (Which IBM Profited From)

    Like his father, who was IBM‘s co-founder and later president of the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC), which helped the Nazis, Watson Jr. entered US and international politics in his later days; recently-declassified documents show us his political legacy



  16. Donald Trump's Trash Against China Helps Prop up Microsoft Monopoly and Distract From All the Microsoft Layoffs

    Microsoft as a surveillance giant of the United States government isn’t a myth; it was first in the PRISM programme of the NSA (Bill Gates is a loud proponent of NSA surveillance), it took over European Skype under mysterious circumstances, and now it might be getting TikTok as a ‘gift’ from Donald Trump’s friends and the imperialists, in effect confiscating Chinese assets for full-spectrum dominance



  17. [Meme] Testosterone Patent Office

    When you're running an office that's barely diverse at all and you paint a misleading picture of it expect backlash



  18. The Criminals Who Run the EPO Are Exploiting Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender People to Distract From Their Corruption and Crimes

    The misuse of social justice causes by corporate interests has become grotesque; more people ought to speak about the ramifications and object/work against this misuse, which mostly serves to obscure or distract from the biggest issues



  19. EPO Workers Are Losing Their Homes and Losing Their Time Off; It's All About So-called 'Production'

    As another wave of attack on labour rights, European Patent Office (EPO) workers turn their homes into their workplaces and they no longer enjoy any real breaks from work (they work all year around, sometimes until midnight and overnight); they’re supposed to be thankful and even happy as if António Campinos does them a favour by not firing them (at least not yet) and because there’s a health crisis they should be grateful for anything thrown at them (Benoît Battistelli + disaster = Campinos)



  20. IRC Proceedings: Friday, July 31, 2020

    IRC logs for Friday, July 31, 2020



  21. Managing IP Still Champions Fake 'News' for Team UPC

    Managing IP does not care about its reputation; all it cares about is appeasing its clients by spreading falsehoods and perpetuating baseless hope



  22. Links 31/7/2020: Sys Admin Appreciation Day, GTK 3.99, Alpha of Wayland's Weston 9.0

    Links for the day



  23. IRC Proceedings: Thursday, July 30, 2020

    IRC logs for Thursday, July 30, 2020



  24. Microsoft Banned *GPLv3 (It Would Have Done the Same Even in GitHub Had GitHub Not Already Hosted GPLv3-Licensed Projects)

    Techrights reproduces this decade-old article from RMS



  25. People Who Believe Global Warning is a 'Hoax' Are the Types Who Might Think Microsoft Really Loves Linux

    Facts don’t seem to matter all that much when the Public Relations ‘industry’ pays to push lies (and “Microsoft loves Linux” is among those truly laughable lies, which are valuable to Microsoft's long-term objectives and are therefore repeated endlessly in the media for maximal effect)



  26. [Meme] GitHub is Not About Sharing But About Giving... Everything to Microsoft

    Microsoft wants to meet your ‘meet’ (meat) and assimilate it as Microsoft’s own; why would anyone still be giving anything (code, bug tracker, CI etc.) to proprietary and centralised (controlled by Microsoft) platforms in 2020? It’s a trap, as even the logo serves to suggest (octopuses putting their tentacles all over you and crushing you with their mouths).



  27. Bill Gates Calls the Chinese 'Pirates' (But He's Simply Projecting Again)

    The world's "most generous" person (according to publishers whom this "generous person" pays to write this) is saving the world from "pirates" (but not the ones in Somalia, just poor people in places like China)



  28. Microsoft Needs Linux (More Than GNU/Linux Needs Microsoft) for the Same Reason a Drowning Person Needs 'Revenge'

    There’s this persistent notion, based upon a deliberate lie (which Microsoft pays the media to perpetuate), that Microsoft has ‘come around’ and magically learned to “love” the competition (as if Ballmer and Nadella are opposites when they’re in fact friends and longtime colleagues); it’s obviously just a phase of a very old strategy and some out there are still in denial about it (this denial is being encouraged by the bribed publishers, notably the mainstream media)



  29. [Meme] It Was Only a Matter of Time All Along

    Taking boot level control away from computer users was a bad idea all along; giving Microsoft control over Linux booting was the icing on the cake (having to ask Microsoft for certificate/permission), not to mention an FSF award for it



  30. IBM and the Bomb - Part II: How IBM Sneaks Into Positions of Power (and Nuclear Power, Global Superpower, Nuclear Weapons)

    We remind readers of the role IBM played in unbridled armament (from which it profited a lot) whilst also picking diplomatic roles in the American government


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