06.24.10

Gemini version available ♊︎

Patents Roundup: Apple Sues Android/Linux Again, ‘Anti-Microsoft’ Patent Upheld, In Re Bilski May be Due Today

Posted in Apple, Free/Libre Software, GNU/Linux, Google, Microsoft, Patents, Ubuntu at 5:15 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

The grudge

Summary: Latest updates about software patents, ranging from Microsoft and Apple to the impact on GNU/Linux users

For entertainment purposes only, see this new video titled “Software patents are dirty scum.”

Apple is once again attacking Linux using software patents. Shame on Apple. It is also part of the Apple vs HTC case and as Slashdot puts it:

Although Android is not mentioned in any of the court documents, many of the patent infringement complaints refer to the software rather than the hardware that HTC manufactures, leading to speculation that Google is the real target, especially considering that Android sales are surpassing the iPhone’s.

Here is the original:

As the court documents (embedded below) show, Apple mentions four of its patents in the suit. However, two of them had already been included in the initial suit, and it appears like they are being re-included because of some minor corrections that needed to be made by the USPTO.

HTC counter-sued, leading to the threat of banning hypePads and other Apple-branded gadgets.

In other patent news, the software patents-loving Facebook is now at Amazon’s mercy due to Amazon’s latest outrageous patent [1, 2] (this week’s fantasies about overlap and duplicates do not take account of the scale and time required to avoid these). Some critics already use this as a demonstration of the failure of the patent system and software patents in particular.

Moving on a little, here we have VirnetX issuing a press release about the patent it used against Microsoft [1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12]. This news is mostly covered by Microsoft boosters who worry about the effects on Microsoft:

According to a new survey from the law community, the alleged link between patents and innovation is weak, but they still defend patents in their survey (they are — after all — in the field of law, not science). From the overview:

The first major survey of high-tech entrepreneurs finds that patents provide less incentive to innovate than popularly believed. A large share of software startups avoid patents altogether, finding it more critical to move fast to market. But patents do offer tangible benefits across industries by limiting competition, attracting financing, and increasing the chances of an acquisition or IPO.

Actually, prominent VCs beg to differ. They publicly say that they are against software patents in particular.

Here is a company buying some software patents as assets, as if the right to write some algorithm can become a transferable monopoly.

IMMI’s technology is a patented proprietary software platform that respondents download to their own smartphone or a smartphone provided to them. According to IMMI’s website, the phone randomly samples ambient audio in the room several times a minute, tracking exposure to TV, movies and radio. In addition, IMMI software monitors mobile web surfing activity and measures internet use.

As readers are probably aware, we wrote a lot of posts about WebM because it’s extremely important as a deterrent of patent aggression against GNU/Linux. LWN has made public its coverage on the subject, going under the headline “Swift and predictable reactions to WebM” and Linux Journal says that “Mozilla, Opera, and Flock Release VP8 Ready Browsers” (that sure was fast!)

The latest wares of three popular browsing applications were released this week reflecting a changing Internet. Open formats are taking center stage at Mozilla, Opera, and Flock as lock-in (or freeze-out), security concerns, and performance issues fuel the drive toward the VP8 video format.

[...]

The VP8 codec reference implementation was open sourced by Google on May 19 and is regulated under a BSD license.

Also see “Get Rolling with WebM Video – VP8 WebM Encoding Tools“:

Now the tools are still in the proverbial Stone Age (those that are free) as it’s just been announced recently and you’ll need some tech savviness to get going. Of course if you’re a user of some of the services who have already begun to offer VP8 and WebM support, then you’re already ahead of the pack. I’ll list those services at the end of this article.

This hopefully makes the MPEG cartel simpler to ignore. YouTube may soon be MPEG-free, for those who wish for it to be that way. Canonical indirectly pays MPEG-LA [1, 2], but it really ought not to, at least in the long term.

Everyone is waiting for Bilski right now [1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7]. It’s not just business method and software patents that boggle the mind these days. Here is another new article about gene patents. It’s titled “Myriad Gene Patent Litigation Goes Down Under” [via]

On Tuesday, June 9, 2010, several plaintiffs, including a breast cancer patient and a cancer advocacy group, sued in a Sydney, Australia federal court to invalidate Myriad Genetics’ patents on the breast cancer susceptibility genes BRCA-1 and 2. According to published reports and comments by Australian patent law experts, the suit substantially tracks the much-publicized one filed in New York by the American Civil Liberties Union. In particular, this suit is also a frontal attack on the Myriad patents, seeking a judgment that genes in isolation from the body are products of nature and thus not patentable inventions.

The factual background in Australia seems a bit different. Myriad has granted an exclusive license to perform BRCA gene tests to a Melbourne company called Genetic Technologies Limited, which is a co-defendant in the case. But GTL has been reported to have “gifted” its patent rights to health care institutions, and not to charge royalties. Nonetheless, the plaintiffs’ lawyers have expressed concern about the possibility of GLT exploiting their monopoly as in the U.S., where the tests cost over $3,000. They note that on two earlier occasions GLT sent letters to hospitals telling them to stop testing. A number of Australian sources have also worried aloud about the implications of the patents for medical research.

More patents lead to less innovation, contrary to what lobbyists and propagandists (like the guy shown below) tell legislators. Such weak arguments from them refer to no concrete evidence. Studies have shown repeatedly that software patents are harmful, unless one is a paranoid monopoly or a lawyer.


Direct link

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 26/10/2021: Vulkan 1.1 Conformance for Raspberry Pi 4 and Tor Browser 10.5.10

    Links for the day



  2. [Meme] Sounds Legit

    When not cheating on the wife, the EPO‘s “doyen” cheats in the exams and makes it into the epi Council, in effect working “[t]owards a common understanding [sic] of quality” with “patent attorneys nominated as “assessors” by the EPO, epi and BusinessEurope” (notorious lobbyists for dictators, litigation, and monopolies, neither business nor science)



  3. [Meme] Mayoral Patent Office Chief

    As it turns out, political 'double-dipping' isn't just a thing in North Macedonia, Austria, and EPOnia



  4. Romania's Patent Office (OSIM): Nine Different Chiefs in Just Eight Years

    The Romanian State Office for Inventions and Trademarks (OSIM), being the equivalent of the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) in the sense that it covers both patents and trademarks, is a very flaky institution with no shortage of scandals; for our English-reading audiences we now have a summary of a decade’s worth of blunders and leadership changes



  5. The EPO’s Overseer/Overseen Collusion — Part XXIV: The Balkan League - Romania

    Romania’s patent office has been in flux this past decade, occasionally led by people with no relevant experience, but rather political connections (like EPO President António Campinos) and sometimes forged documents and fake degrees



  6. IRC Proceedings: Monday, October 25, 2021

    IRC logs for Monday, October 25, 2021



  7. [Meme] “Social Democracy” at the EPO

    Some comments on the current situation at the European Patent Office from Goran Gerasimovski, the new EPO Administrative Council delegate for North Macedonia and Social Democratic candidate for mayor of Centar (a municipality of Skopje)



  8. [Meme] António Campinos Visits the OSIM

    António Campinos visits OSIM Director-General Ionel Muscalu in February 2014



  9. [Meme] [Teaser] Meet the President

    Later today we shall see what Romania did for Battistelli



  10. Links 26/10/2021: Latte Dock 0.10.3 and Linux 5.15 RC7

    Links for the day



  11. Gemini Protocol's Originator: “I Continue to Care About This Project and I Care About the Community That Has Formed Around It.”

    'Solderpunk' is back from a long hiatus; this bodes well for Geminispace, which grew fast in spite of the conspicuous absence



  12. Bulgarian Like Bavarian Serfdom

    Bulgarian politics seem to have played a big role in selecting chiefs and delegates who backed Benoît Battistelli‘s unlawful proposals, which treat workers almost like slaves and ordinary citizens as disposable ‘collaterals’



  13. The EPO’s Overseer/Overseen Collusion — Part XXIII: The Balkan League - Bulgaria

    Today we examine the role of Bulgaria in Benoît Battistelli‘s liberticidal regime at the EPO (as well as under António Campinos, from 2018 to present) with particular focus on political machinations



  14. Links 25/10/2021: New Slackware64-current and a Look at Ubuntu Budgie

    Links for the day



  15. Links 25/10/2021: pg_statement_rollback 1.3 and Lots of Patent Catchup

    Links for the day



  16. Microsoft GitHub Exposé — Part III — A Story of Plagiarism and Likely Securities Fraud

    Today we tread slowly and take another step ahead, revealing the nature of only some among many problems that GitHub and Microsoft are hiding from the general public (to the point of spiking media reports)



  17. [Meme] [Teaser] Oligarchs-Controlled Patent Offices With Media Connections That Cover Up Corruption

    As we shall see later today, the ‘underworld’ in Bulgaria played a role or pulled the strings of politically-appointed administrators who guarded Benoît Battistelli‘s liberticidal regime at the EPO



  18. IRC Proceedings: Sunday, October 24, 2021

    IRC logs for Sunday, October 24, 2021



  19. Links 25/10/2021: EasyOS 3.1 and Bareflank 3.0

    Links for the day



  20. The Demolition of the EPO Was Made Possible With Assistance From Countries That Barely Have European Patents

    The legal basis of today's EPO has been crushed; a lot of this was made possible by countries with barely any stakes in the outcome



  21. The EPO’s Overseer/Overseen Collusion — Part XXII: The Balkan League - North Macedonia and Albania

    We continue to look at Benoît Battistelli‘s enablers at the EPO



  22. Links 24/10/2021: GPS Daemon (GPSD) Bug and Lots of Openwashing

    Links for the day



  23. Links 24/10/2021: XWayland 21.1.3 and Ubuntu Linux 22.04 LTS Daily Build

    Links for the day



  24. IRC Proceedings: Saturday, October 23, 2021

    IRC logs for Saturday, October 23, 2021



  25. Links 24/10/2021: Ceph Boss Sage Weil Resigns and Many GPL Enforcement Stories

    Links for the day



  26. GAFAM-Funded NPR Reports That Facebook Let Millions of People Like Trump Flout the So-called Rules. Not Just “a Few”.

    Guest post by Ryan, reprinted with permission



  27. Some Memes About What Croatia Means to the European Patent Office

    Before we proceed to other countries in the region, let’s not forget or let’s immortalise the role played by Croatia in the EPO (memes are memorable)



  28. Gangster Culture in the EPO

    The EPO‘s Administrative Council was gamed by a gangster from Croatia; today we start the segment of the series which deals with the Balkan region



  29. The EPO’s Overseer/Overseen Collusion — Part XXI: The Balkan League – The Doyen and His “Protégée”

    The EPO‘s circle of corruption in the Balkan region will be the focus of today’s (and upcoming) coverage, showing some of the controversial enablers of Benoît Battistelli and António Campinos, two deeply corrupt French officials who rapidly drive the Office into the ground for personal gain (at Europe’s expense!)



  30. Links 23/10/2021: FreeBSD 12.3 Beta, Wine 6.20, and NuTyX 21.10.0

    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