05.17.10

Gemini version available ♊︎

Bad Apple, Part II: Apple Carries on Armament With Software Patents, Harms Firefox

Posted in Apple, Free/Libre Software, GNU/Linux, Patents at 5:28 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Fennek

Summary: As Apple’s fight against Linux continues, new lawsuits against Apple arrive, new patents are granted, and Theora is affected too (Mozilla employees who uses Macs ought to rethink their choice of relationships)

IN THE mobile industry, everyone is suing everyone else these days (Fennec is potentially affected). As we mentioned the other day, Wired highlights this serious issue because there are no winners here except the lawyers. It makes no sense. Apple is among the aggressors, not the defenders. Nokia is the same and its case against Apple we have already covered in [1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10].

In the previous post we showed that Apple not only sues Linux using software patents; Trademarks seem likely to have been used too.

There are some articles out there which describe HTC’s counter action against Apple as offensive. The Inquirer‘s headline says “HTC sues Apple again” (not again, that’s for sure). HTC is not the aggressor, but a lot of the mainstream press — MSBBC included — paints it that way. In the following video, the people in the studio get it wrong, but the lady whom they speak to corrects them.

Please someone explain how casio linux Qt-based pdas 12 years ago with touch screens did not infringe patents but todays Qt-based Nokias and Andriod Nexus does?

We criticised this poor type of coverage some days ago. Here is some better coverage and a list of software patents used by HTC:

* Patent #6,999,800 – Method for power management of a smartphone
* Patent #5,541,988 – Telephone dialer with a personalized page organization of telephone directory memory
* Patent #6,058,183 (PDF) – Telephone dialer with a personalized page organization of telephone directory memory
* Patent #6,320,957 – Telephone dialer with easy access memory
* Patent #7,716,505 (PDF) – Power control methods for a portable electronic device

It is interesting to see HTC filing for US patents on software. It’s distributing Linux, isn’t it? Well so does IBM and so does Novell. More software patents from Apple continue to be pursued:

Apple patent filing portends Google ad war

Apple has filed a patent to enable info and apps to be automagically loaded onto your iPhone/Pod/Pad based on your location – but exactly how it would affect location-based ads remains fuzzy.

The patent application, “Location Specific Content”, was published by the US Patent and Trademark office this Thursday, after originally being filed in November of 2008.

Another interesting one says: “Ad company Virtual Iris riding the HTML5 wave”

As the web format battle between HTML5 and Adobe’s Flash heats up, the creators of an ad-building tool called Virtual Iris say they can deliver the rich media experience of Flash in HTML.

Much of the interest in HTML5, which is the latest update of the basic format of the web, has been fueled by Apple, which doesn’t support Flash on the iPhone and the iPad (leading to back-and-forth insults between Apple and Flash-maker Adobe). Apple has also announced an ad-building service called iAd, which will feature HTML5 video. Not wanting to be left off by Apple’s devices, startups like Scribd have abandoned Flash for HTML5, and ad-building startup Sprout, which was initially all about Flash, now supports both formats.

Apple uses these offensively and it also fights against Theora — a move that in turn harms GNU/Linux and Mozilla for reasons that we mentioned in:

“The Firefox project has opted to exclude certain features due to software patents,” posts the FFII’s president who points to this new article.

Wild Fox: Firefox Fork with H.264 Support

[...]

Mozilla, sticking to its ideals of the open web, decided long ago that support for the patent-encumbered H264 codec would not be included in any of its products. Not only is H264 wholly incompatible with the open web and Free software, it is also incredibly expensive. Mozilla could use one of the open source implementations, but those are not licensed, and the MPEG-LA has been quite clear in that it will sue those who encode or decode H264 content without a license. Software patents, however, are only valid in some parts of the world, so an enterprising developer has started a project that was sure to come eventually: Firefox builds with H264 support.

Wild Fox may be valuable (and legal) outside the US and Japan, but its main problem is that it would encourage webmasters not to choose and to spread Ogg Theora. Mozilla would have to pay about $5 million per year for MPEG-LA licences (mostly covering places where software patents are not legal) rather than use the same amount of money to pay 50-100 more programmers.

Here is a video of Stallman talking about patents and Free software [Ogg] (thanks to tinyvid.tv, which is back to delivering Ogg).


The quality of this video is considerably high. There is nothing fundamentally wrong with Theora.

As a bonus point for Apple, the Theora FUDMeister and saboteur, here is another lawsuit that might teach them a lesson if not anger them:

Bear and Monkey smack Apple with patent suit

[...]

Apple has been slapped with another patent infringement lawsuit – but the suit says more about the festering sore that is the US patent system than it does about the individual patents involved.

The lawsuit was filed by Austin, Texas inventor Eric Gould Bear, President and CEO of interface design firm MonkeyMedia. The core of his infringement claim is that his patents cover a user-interface concept that he calls “Seamless Contraction” – essentially a set of techniques to narrow the display of information to that which is most “salient,” to use his term, to the user’s needs.

Might Apple ever join the fight against software patents? It’s extremely unlikely. Apple actively uses those patents to harm competition, notably Linux/Android at the moment.

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. IRC Proceedings: Wednesday, December 08, 2021

    IRC logs for Wednesday, December 08, 2021



  2. Microsoft Corporation is Still Protecting a Violent Criminal Who Assaults Women (Employing Him as Manager, Protecting Him From Arrest, Paying Him a Salary)

    Ahead of court and amid arrest warrant Microsoft still deems this a good idea? Then again, this same company works for ICE, helping to kidnap babies from their mothers...



  3. Links 8/12/2021: Linux 5.15.7 Out, Linux Mint 20.3 is Near

    Links for the day



  4. Links 8/12/2021: Zorin OS 16 Milestone and Calculate Linux 22 Released; Kubernetes 1.23

    Links for the day



  5. A Call for Sources and Whistleblowers From Microsoft's GitHub

    Remarks on our publications from this morning and a call for more leakers and whistleblowers, who know GitHub better than anybody else (including lots of fools who still outsource all of their hard labour to Microsoft through GitHub)



  6. [Teaser] Rape is Not a Joke

    Having just uploaded a police report, we’re starting to move the ongoing series to the next phase, which will still be — for the most part — weekly installments on Mondays (for months to come)



  7. [Teaser] Meet Microsoft’s Chief Architect of GitHub Copilot, Balabhadra (Alex) Graveley (Updated)

    Alex Graveley, a serial abuser, has been protected by Microsoft; what does that say about Microsoft and about Nat Friedman, GitHub’s CEO whom Alex considers his "best friend"? Stay tuned as we have plenty more to show



  8. IRC Proceedings: Tuesday, December 07, 2021

    IRC logs for Tuesday, December 07, 2021



  9. Links 8/12/2021: FreeBSD 12.3, EasyOS 3.1.13, and WordPress 5.9 Beta 2

    Links for the day



  10. [Meme] EU Assurances

    The EPO‘s staff cannot be blamed for losing patience as elected public representatives completely fail to do their job (with few exceptions)



  11. Clare Daly (GUE/NGL) Does What Every Public Official in Europe Should Have Done About EPO Shenanigans

    There’s another (new) push to hold the EPO accountable, seeing that the overseers clearly do not do their job and instead cover up the abuses



  12. Links 7/12/2021: Firefox 96 Beta and Fedora 37 Abandons ARMv7

    Links for the day



  13. Links 7/12/2021: Plasma Mobile Gear 21.12 and Tails 4.25

    Links for the day



  14. All IRC Logs Now Available as GemText Over Gemini Protocol

    Today we've completed the transition from plain text over gemini:// to GemText over gemini:// for IRC logs



  15. IRC Proceedings: Monday, December 06, 2021

    IRC logs for Monday, December 06, 2021



  16. [Meme] Rowing to the Bottom of the Ocean

    The EPO‘s Steve Rowan (VP1) is failing EPO staff and sort of “firing” workers during times of crisis (not at all a crisis to the EPO’s coffers)



  17. EPO Gradually Reduced to 'Fee Collection Agency' Which Eliminates Its Very Own Staff

    Mr. Redundancies and Mr. Cloud are outsourcing EPO jobs to Microsoft and Serco as if the EPO is an American corporation, providing no comfort to long-serving EPO staff



  18. Linux Foundation 2021 Annual Report Made on an Apple Mac Using Proprietary Software

    Yes, you’re reading this correctly. They still reject both “Linux” and “Open Source” (no dogfooding). This annual report is badly compressed; each page of the PDF is, on average, almost a megabyte in size (58.8 MB for a report of this scale is unreasonable and discriminates against people in countries with slow Internet connections); notice how they’re milking the brand in the first page (straight after the cover page, the 1991 ‘creation myth’, ignoring GNU); remember that this foundation is named after a trademark which is not even its own!



  19. Links 7/12/2021: OpenIndiana Hipster 2021.10 and AppStream 0.15

    Links for the day



  20. Microsoft “Defender” Pretender Attacks Random Software That Uses NSIS for installation; “Super Duper Secure Mode” for Edge is a Laugh

    Guest post by Ryan, reprinted with permission



  21. Links 6/12/2021: LibreOffice Maintenance Releases, Firefox 95 Finalised

    Links for the day



  22. “Wintel” “Secure” uEFI Firmware Used to Store Persistent Malware, and Security Theater Boot is Worthless

    Guest post by Ryan, reprinted with permission



  23. No Linux Foundation IRS Disclosures Since 2018

    The publicly-available records or IRS information about the Linux Foundation is suspiciously behind; compared to other organisations with a "tax-exempt" status the Linux Foundation is one year behind already



  24. Jim Zemlin Has Deleted All of His Tweets

    The Linux Foundation‘s Jim Zemlin seems to have become rather publicity-shy (screenshots above are self-explanatory; latest snapshot), but years ago he could not contain his excitement about Microsoft, which he said was "loved" by what it was attacking. Days ago it became apparent that Microsoft’s patent troll is still attacking Linux with patents and Zemlin’s decision to appoint Microsoft as the At-Large Director (in effect bossing Linus Torvalds) at the ‘Linux’ Foundation’s Board of Directors is already backfiring. She not only gets her whole salary from Microsoft but also allegedly protects sexual predators who assault women… by hiring them despite repeated warnings; if the leadership of the ‘Linux’ Foundation protects sexual predators who strangle women (even paying them a salary and giving them management positions), how can the ‘Linux’ Foundation ever claim to represent inclusion and diversity?



  25. Microsoft GitHub Exposé — Part IX — Microsoft's Chief Architect of GitHub Copilot Sought to be Arrested One Day After Techrights Article About Him

    Balabhadra (Alex) Graveley has warrant for his arrest, albeit only after a lot of harm and damage had already been done (to multiple people) and Microsoft started paying him



  26. The Committee on Patent Law (PLC) Informed About Overlooked Issues “Which Might Have a Bearing on the Validity of EPO Patents.”

    In a publication circulated or prepared last week the Central Staff Committee (CSC) of the EPO explains a situation never explored in so-called 'media' (the very little that's left of it)



  27. Links 6/12/2021: HowTos and Patents

    Links for the day



  28. IRC Proceedings: Sunday, December 05, 2021

    IRC logs for Sunday, December 05, 2021



  29. Gemini Space/Protocol: Taking IRC Logs to the Next Level

    Tonight we begin the migration to GemText for our daily IRC logs, having already made them available over gemini://



  30. Links 6/12/2021: Gnuastro 0.16 and Linux 5.16 RC4

    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