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

01.11.12

Linux/Android Still Faces Proxy Challenge

Posted in Apple, Microsoft, Oracle, Patents at 4:20 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

“…Microsoft wished to promote SCO and its pending lawsuit against IBM and the Linux operating system. But Microsoft did not want to be seen as attacking IBM or Linux.”

Larry Goldfarb, BayStar, key investor in SCO approached by Microsoft

Summary: MOSAID and Oracle as seen in the context of Android; more new rants about the USPTO, which loses support from the US public

OUR resource page about MOSAID is being expanded as it becomes increasingly evident that Microsoft uses it as a proxy.

Groklaw has been following this patent troll since it took on Red Hat and according to this update, MOSAID’s case becomes ever more bizarre:

If you were a patent holder contemplating suing a bunch of companies for patent infringement, what’s the first thing you would want to know? Do you think maybe it would be that you actually own the patent(s) you are asserting. That thought obviously never crossed MOSAID’s mind when it brought suit back in August against Red Hat, IBM and others. (See Mosaid v. Red Hat – A new patent infringement complaint aimed at Linux).

And if that weren’t bad enough, your attorneys then demonstrate they have no clue that the America Invents Act (patent reform act) was signed into law on September 16, 2011, or that pleading patent infringement requires something more than saying I own a patent and you infringe it. These guys can’t get anything right.

Of course, what makes it all the worse is that MOSAID Technologies is that patent troll that has now climbed into bed with Microsoft and Nokia to try and cause more havoc with Android. There are a number of things I love about Canada – MOSAID is not one of them.

Let’s recap the history of this litigation. MOSAID brought its original complaint (PDF; Text] for patent infringement on August 9, 2011, against Red Hat, IBM, Alcatel-Lucent, Adobe, Juniper, VMWare, and NetApp. That original complaint asserted two U.S. patents: 6,505,241 (’241), allegedly infringed by Adobe, Alcatel, IBM, Juniper, and NetApp; and 5,892,914 (’914), allegedly infringed by Red Hat. Interestingly, although VMware is identified as a defendant in the heading and as a party to the suit, the complaint contains no specific allegation that VMware infringed either of the patents, despite the fact that VMware’s vFabric GemFire Platform is identified as an infringing product. Screw-up number one.

On September 16, 2011, President Obama signs the America Invents Act into law. More on that in a bit.

On September 27, 2011, purported defendants IBM, Juniper, Adobe, Alcatel-Lucent, NetApp, and VMware wrote to MOSAID informing MOSAID of its second big mistake – MOSAID didn’t own the ’241 patent. Oops!

After receiving the Complaint, defendants discovered that MOSAID could not assert the ‘241 patent because more than three years earlier—on June 30, 2008—MOSAID’s predecessor-in-interest, Network Caching Technology, LLC, had dedicated the entire patent to the public pursuant to 35 U.S.C. § 253.

Screw up number two!

For those who are new to it, MOSAID tried to get Nokia patents (with Microsoft’s help) through some dodgy route in a tiny European country. B&N complained about it. It saw what was happening there and the obvious target is Android/Linux.

The patent system is a big sham and the hype we see about patents in the news ought to stop because it kills the real, i.e. producing, industry. Ed Lazowska, writing for Xconomy, is one of the latest to complain about the patent system. He writes:

Just about everything about the system is broken. In my view it is working strongly against real innovation. Major companies amass enormous portfolios of questionable patents that they can use to bludgeon one another (until they sign cross-licensing agreements, at which point only the little guys are left to be bludgeoned). Organizations that are not in the innovation business acquire portfolios that they assert for profit alone. I have absolutely nothing against the licensing of substantive innovations by those in the innovation business, whether by major companies or little guys . But much of what goes on today does not fall into this category, and something needs to change. I am not sufficiently expert to make appropriate detailed proposals, but I am sufficiently expert to smell a rat.

Yes, this man is getting it. Then there are rats like Tuxera, which acts more like a Microsoft proxy (we are still working on it by speaking to XFS copyright holders). There is this new press release about this rat which helps Microsoft put a patent tax on Android and Linux. To quote:

Marvell and Tuxera’s joint solution is designed to reduce overall development cost and enable faster time to market for customers’ NAS platforms..

Only if your aim is to make Microsoft the standard (Microsoft’s file systems). This is one of the ways Microsoft currently extorts backers of Android, according to what we learned from the OIN (ActiveSync is another vector, but it’s under NDAs). Then there is Oracle’s attack on Android, the latest on which is summarised as follows:

A judge’s ruling on the Android Java patent battle between Google and Oracle has given both battling companies some wins and some losses. A potentially embarrassing email by a Google engineer has been allowed in as evidence. On the other hand, Oracle has been limited in its ability to introduce other evidence for its claim that Google has infringed on its Java language patents.

We still believe that the lawsuit may have been motivated by Steve Jobs, who is Larry Ellison’s best friend. Apple will hopefully get spanked in the courtroom for patent violations, to the point where Apple will need to rethink its stance on patents. One of the major lawsuits against Apple is from the dying Kodak, which turned into a patent aggressor in light of its failures:

The 132-year-old photography icon has been pummeled by consumers’ switch to digital. Its fortunes deteriorated further last year, and it said in November that it could run out of cash in a year if it couldn’t sell a trove of 1,100 digital-imaging patents.

Given that Kodak keeps suing Apple, we hope that Kodak keeps those out of the hands of trolls and keeps giving Apple reasons to reconsider its patent strategy.

Share this post: These icons link to social bookmarking sites where readers can share and discover new web pages.
  • Digg
  • del.icio.us
  • Reddit
  • co.mments
  • DZone
  • email
  • Google Bookmarks
  • LinkedIn
  • NewsVine
  • Print
  • Technorati
  • TwitThis
  • Facebook

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

3 Comments

  1. mcinsand said,

    January 12, 2012 at 8:12 am

    Gravatar

    MS and Apple both have the same mode to stay in business, basically; intimidate and bully the markets while selling to lemmings that just don’t know that they can have better performance with more choices through FOSS. As long as FOSS market share stays low, Joe Public will not be aware that he can have far more for far less, which is why Android has Redmond and Cupertino in such a panic.

    Apple and MS don’t mind being parasites off of FOSS. For decades, I actually thought that MS had developed the Word for DOS interface that freed me from playing Twister with my fingers to use WordPerfect. When Apple introduced Bootcamp, a lot of my walled garden friends asked why Linux didn’t have multibooting ability. Yeah, we had that long before Apple. And, when we look at posted ‘evidence’ that IOS is strikingly new, all we see is proof that Apple is only incorporating what many of us have had for a long time.

    The point is that thuggery is all that the two have left, although Apple has more freedom for direct anticompetitive behavior than MS. The modes are the same, but, with a huge market share, MS has to be careful about using proxies. Apple escapes prosecution for market suppressive practices, especially on the desktop, because of low market share, which is a problem. If we don’t want bully monopolies, then we need to enforce consistently.

    Regards,
    mc

    Dr. Roy Schestowitz Reply:

    Another difference is, with patent aggression Apple wants to castrate or ban the competition, whereas Microsoft is trying to tax the competition, driving up its price to the point where it’s uneconomic or making a Microsoft cash cow out of the competition. Both are anti-competitive tactics that merit government intervention (if only the government was funded by people and not corporations).

    mcinsand Reply:

    The modes basically remain the same as they have been for decades, then. MS used to tax all PC manufacturers with the MS-Basic ROM deal on motherboards, to ride the wave of PC growth. Apple has always been a thuggish dictator, and I remember my friends with Macintoys having to pay 4 times what I was for basically the same 3½” floppy drive. The difference, of couse, was that the Macintoy was crippled to only take drives with the sacred Apple logo.

    And, both have not minded copying FOSS, as long as they didn’t have to pay for it, and as long as FOSS remained a minor player. I was happy to get MS-Word for DOS because of the interface… that I found later they had copied from EMACS. It certainly beat the way WordPerfect made me play Twister with my fingers. Apple was the first of the two to recognize that they don’t have the expertise needed for a modern, stable operating system, but then they turned BSD into a shiny, crippled toy by removing versatility and hardware support to make OSX. Of course, Apple didn’t mind journalists crediting them with Bootcamp, when the rest of us have been using boot loaders for years. And, the one time they did participate significantly in FOSS, with the Webkit project, they were a nightmare to work with, trying to get all that they could without giving anything useful back.

    I’ll be glad to see them both implode!

What Else is New


  1. The Death of Software Patents and Microsoft's Coup Against Yahoo! Made the Company Worthless

    A look at what happens to companies whose value is a house of software patents rather than code and a broad base of users/customers



  2. Munich Attack Mentioned by EPO But Not Ansbach

    The EPO does the usual right-wing thing (exploiting disaster/emergency for domestic crackdowns), but some bemoan the omission of the explosion at Ansbach (also in Germany)



  3. Kluwer Thinks People Are Clueless About the Unitary Patent System and Pretends It's Business as Usual

    Flogging the dead UPC horse at times of great uncertainty (enough to bring the UPC to a standstill)



  4. Almost Everything That the Government Accountability Office Says is Applicable to the EPO

    The Government Accountability Office in the United States produces reports which can serve as a timely warning sign to the European Patent Office, where patent quality is rapidly declining in order to meet 'production' goals



  5. Microsoft Says It Loves Linux, But Its Anti-Linux Patent Trolls Are Still Around and Active

    Highlighting just two of the many entities that Microsoft (and partners) use in order to induce additional costs on Free (as in freedom) software



  6. Links 26/7/2016: Microsoft Growing Desperate, Linux 4.8 Visions

    Links for the day



  7. Links 25/7/2016: Linux 4.7 Final, PostgreSQL 9.6 Beta 3

    Links for the day



  8. Leaked: Boards of Appeal Face 'Exile' or 'Extradition' in Haar After Standing up to Battistelli

    A look at some of the latest moves at the European Patent Office (EPO), following Battistelli's successful coup d’état which brought the EPO into a perpetual state of emergency that perpetuates Battistelli's totalitarian powers



  9. The US Government Accountability Office (GAO) Comes Across as Against Software Patents, Relates to the EPO as Well

    Some analysis of the input from the Government Accountability Office (GAO) with focus on the EPO and software patents



  10. In the US, Patent Trolls Engage in Patent Wars and Shakedowns, Whereas in China/Korea Large Android OEMs Sue One Another

    Highlighting some of the differences between the US patent system and other patent systems



  11. Links 24/7/2016: Elive 2.7.1 Beta, New Flatpaks and Snaps

    Links for the day



  12. Links 23/7/2016: Leo Laporte on GNU/Linux, Dolphin Emulator’s Vulkan Completion

    Links for the day



  13. Links 22/7/2016: Wine 1.9.15, KaOS 2016.07 ISO

    Links for the day



  14. Haar Mentioned as Likely Site of Appeal Boards as Their Eradication or Marginalisation Envisioned by UPC Proponent Benoît Battistelli

    Not only the Staff Union of the European Patent Office (SUEPO) is under severe attack and possibly in mortal danger; the increasingly understaffed Boards of Appeal too are coming under attack and may (according to rumours) be sent to Haar, a good distance away from Munich and the airport (half an hour drive), not to mention lack of facilities for visitors from overseas



  15. EPO Attaché Albert Keyack Viewed as Somewhat of a Mole, Reporting From the US Embassy in Brazil Until Shortly Before the Temer Coup

    Public responses to the role played by Albert Keyack on behalf of the United States inside the European [sic] Patent Office



  16. EPO Insiders Explain Why the EPO's Examination Quality Rapidly Declines and Will Get Even Worse Because of Willy Minnoye

    Public comments from anonymous insiders serve to highlight a growing crisis inside the European Patent Office (EPO), where experienced/senior examiners are walking away and leaving an irreplaceable bunch of seats (due to high experience demands)



  17. Patents Roundup: BlackBerry, Huawei, PTAB, GAO, Aggressive Universities With Patents, and Software Patents in Europe

    Various bits and pieces of news regarding patents and their fast-changing nature in the United States nowadays



  18. Glimpse at Patent Systems Across the World: Better Quality Control at the USPTO Post-America Invents Act (2011), Unlike the EPO Post-Battistelli (2010)

    While the EPO reportedly strives to eliminate pendency and appeal windows altogether (rubberstamping being optimal performance as per the yardstick du jour), the USPTO introduces changes that would strengthen the system and shield innovation, not protect the business model of serial litigants



  19. Blockstream Has No Patents, But Pledges Not to Sue Using Patents

    Blockstream says that it comes in peace when it comes to software patents, which triggers speculations about coming Blockchain patent wars



  20. Links 21/7/2016: Ubuntu 16.04.1 LTS, Linux Mint 18 “Sarah” Xfce Beta

    Links for the day



  21. Links 21/7/2016: An Honorary Degree for Alan Cox, Looks Back at DebConf16

    Links for the day



  22. EPO USA: Under Battistelli, the 'European' Patent Office Emulates All the Mistakes of the USPTO

    Conservative Benoît Battistelli is trying to impose on the European Patent Office various truly misguided policies and he viciously attacks anyone or anything that stands in his way, including his formal overseers



  23. Links 19/7/2016: ARM and Opera Buyout

    Links for the day



  24. Large Corporations' Software Patenting Pursuits Carry on in Spite of Patent Trolls That Threaten Small Companies the Most

    With unconvincing excuses such as OIN, large corporations including IBM continue to promote software patents in the United States, even when public officials and USPTO officials work towards ending those



  25. Battistelli Has Implemented De Facto EPO Coup to Remove Oversight, Give Himself Total Power, and Allegedly Give UPC Gifts (Loot) to French Officials

    Benoît Battistelli's agenda at the EPO is anything but beneficial to the EPO and suspicions that Battistelli's overall agenda is transitioning to the UPC to further his goals grow feet



  26. EPO Social [sic] Report is a Big Pile of Lies That Responsible Journalists Must Ignore

    A reminder of where the EPO stands on social issues and why the latest so-called 'social' report is nothing but paid-for propaganda for Battistelli's political ambitions



  27. Links 18/7/2016: Vista 10 a Failure, FreeType 2.7

    Links for the day



  28. Exploiting Perceived Emergencies/Disasters, Suspending the Rule of Law, and Suspending Judges: How Erdoğan is Like Battistelli, Except the Coup

    Pretexts for crackdown on law-abiding people or figureheads who are remote and independent the hallmark not only of Erdoğan but also the EPO's President, Benoit Battistelli



  29. The Impotence of Gene Quinn

    Attacking the enforcer of Alice v CLS because it's doing harm to his source of income, which makes him angry



  30. After the FTI Consulting-EPO Reputation Laundering Deal's Expansion in Germany Süddeutsche Zeitung 'Forgets' That the EPO Even Exists

    Relative apathy if not complete silence regarding the EPO at Süddeutsche Zeitung following reports of FTI Consulting's deal expansion (media positioning in Germany), with hundreds of thousands of Euros (EPO budget) thrown at the controversial task


CoPilotCo

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

CoPilotCo

Recent Posts