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

02.22.12

Patents Let Giants Attack the Rest, Apple Attack FOSS

Posted in Apple, Free/Libre Software, Patents at 12:12 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

jupiter

Summary: A roundup of patent news with focus on Apple’s attack on FOSS projects, notably in the courtroom

PATENTS are still being used to push small players out of the market, as shown recently courtesy of Honeywell.

As we also showed some days ago, there is impact [1, 2, 3] on dentists. This was mentioned here some days ago when we stressed the human toll of patents. There are too many reports of software patents out there and they have a negative effect on the inclination to develop (this factor is rarely being taken into account in cost analyses). GCC and other examples of widely used Free software are always at the mercy of patent holders. This works well for those who can wield an axe while exploiting Free software – companies such as Apple, which hoarded KHTML and many other FOSS projects (before starting to attack FOSS with patent lawsuits).

It was only a matter of time really, especially given Apple’s arrogance. Watch what Apple is doing to CUPS right now. It’s not just technical sabotage but also legal sabotage. It helps nobody except Apple, the selfish company that promotes selfishness. “Software patents do create jobs for litigation lawyers and patent attorneys in Europe,” writes the FFII, which keeps emphasising that patents are not about innovation but about profit for very few people. Given Apple’s legal attacks on FOSS, lawyers’ blogs are providing tips for fellow patent lawyers. Paul Cole is not interested in innovation but only in ways of exploiting the EPO to extract money. To quote:

According to BBC News last Friday, Apple has succeeded in the German courts in enforcing a patent for a user interface feature for its mobile devices. The ruling demonstrates the value of European patents for “software” inventions where a “technical” effect can be demonstrated. The claims in the granted patents and the problems that they solve provide insight about what features of a user interface might be regarded as “technical” by the EPO. The advantages to a software developer of being able to patent innovative interface features that are important to the “look and feel” of the device and the software running on it are self-evident.

[...]

One take-away message for US applicants is the need to draft applications bearing in mind the exclusions under the EPC: stating as one of the main objects of the inventions “to provide more aesthetically pleasing operations” plays straight into the hands of an Examining Division or Appeal Board within the EPO and even if such objects can and should be stated, functional objects are best set out first. Another message is not to overlook the role of the human user in the invention: in the refused application the needs of the computer and the attractiveness of the micro-movie as a matter of shape were explained but what was necessary for the user to see the “micro-movie” and how long it should last were left unstated.

Meanwhile, over in China, Apple is shown for the hypocrite it is:

INTERNATIONAL LITIGATOR Apple could be faced with the prospect of a ban on its Ipads in China, after a lower court ruled in favour of Shenzhen Proview Technology.
Proview claims that it owns the rights to the Ipad name in China and wants a ban on sales of its rival’s device in the country. So far it has had some success in China, and now, according to a report at the Associated Press, it can claim another victory.

This is far from the first time Apple is accused of taking other companies’ names. But Apple and its followers just ignore the reality of inspiration and simultaneous discoveries/advancements. Apple created this illusion that it is a great innovator and that everything resembling an Apple product is just a ripoff, never mind prior art and Steve Jobs’ admission of copying others massively.

One thing that Android backers definitely did not copy from Apple is defective antennas, which even Apple with its hype machine can no longer cover up.

A few days ago we wrote about Apple's use of a "slide to lock" patent to try to ban Android devices. Apple has no shame and some of the press mocks Apple for it [1, 2, 3] although not sufficiently. One analysis shows why Apple’s patent should be considered invalid:

When I initially searched the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office database and Google Patents, I missed something very interesting in the war [1][2] between Apple, Inc. (AAPL) and Android’s “Big Three” — Google Inc.’s (GOOG) new acquisition Motorola, HTC Corp. (TPE:2498), and Samsung Electronics Comp., Ltd. (KS:005930) — regarding swipe-to-unlock intellectual property.

Neonode Inc. (NEON) appears to be the first to patent this technology, holding a claim I missed.

Currently, Apple is trying to embargo certain Android devices:

Apple raised the stakes in an intensifying global patent battle with Samsung Electronics by targeting the latest model using Google’s fast growing Android software, a move which may affect other Android phone makers.

Please boycott Apple and also explain to other people why Apple is an enemy of fair competition. There is nothing “magical” there. This sort of behaviour oughtn’t be tolerated, and not only because Android is based on Linux. This harms everyone in the market and outside of it (customers).

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

A Single Comment

  1. Michael said,

    February 22, 2012 at 1:43 pm

    Gravatar

    Apple has no attack against FOSS. You made that up. In face, Apple has gotten OSS into the hands of more desktop users than all desktop Linux distros *combined*. The idea that they are somehow an enemy to OSS is complete fantasy.

    It was only a matter of time really, especially given Apple’s arrogance. Watch what Apple is doing to CUPS right now. It’s not just technical sabotage but also legal sabotage.

    Complete fabrication on your part – but worse than that, it shows a complete lack of understanding of the entire concept of what it means for OSS to be *free*. When you work on open source software you are welcome to change it to suite your needs. Add to it. Take from it. Alter it. Do *anything* you want but prevent others from doing the same. This is the core value of OSS. This is what being open is all about. This is what Apple is doing.
    And you do not get it. You whine and complain that Apple, who owes you nothing, is not working to serve your needs. Boo hoo, Roy. What a sad state your mind-set is in to think the world owes you everything.

    It helps nobody except Apple, the selfish company that promotes selfishness.

    Selfish! You simple do not get it. Let’s look at someone who might just understand Linux (and OSS) a wee bit better than you (which is really anyone, but let’s pick a specific expert):
    Linus Torvalds: http://www.linux-mag.com/id/7439/

    I agree that it’s driven by selfish reasons, but that’s how all open source code gets written! We all “scratch our own itches”. It’s why I started Linux, it’s why I started git, and it’s why I am still involved. It’s the reason for everybody to end up in open source, to some degree. So complaining about the fact that Microsoft picked a selfish area to work on is just silly. Of course they picked an area that helps them. That’s the point of open source – the ability to make the code better for your particular needs, whoever the ‘your’ in question happens to be. Does anybody complain when hardware companies write drivers for the hardware they produce? No. That would be crazy. Does anybody complain when IBM funds all the POWER development, and works on enterprise features because they sell into the enterprise? No. That would be insane.

    You are doing what Linus Torvalds considers to be insane. Yes: insane. You are not being even slightly rational in your reaction to Apple. You rarely are. You are driven by emotion and, as you have said yourself, "envy".
    And then you on about your BS attacks against Apple’s work against plagiarism.
    Here: challenge for you – make a statement about your view on plagiarism. Is it fine in your book? Is it something that those who are plagiarized should work to correct? Just what is your view?
    You will not, of course, answer this – because then you would have to be completely open about your pro-plagiarism stance.
    Oh, as far as your call to boycott Apple. LOL! You do realize the only ones who will listen are your cult-buddies who are willing to blindly accept your BS without thinking. As shown above, you know nothing of OSS and are simply not willing to talk about your views on plagiarism.

What Else is New


  1. Links 22/1/2018: Linux 4.15 Delayed Again, Libinput 1.9.901

    Links for the day



  2. Team UPC Calls Critics of the UPC Idiots, Deletes Their Comments, and Blocks Them

    A new low for Team UPC, which is unable to cope with reality and has begun literally mocking and deleting comments of people who speak out truths



  3. How the Opposition to CRISPR Patents at the EPO Sent Shockwaves Through the Industry

    Additional reports/coverage on the EPO (European Patent Office) revoking Broad Institute's CRISPR patent show that the issue at hand isn't just one sole patent but the whole class/family of patents



  4. Unified Patents Says That RPX, Which Might Soon be Owned by Patent Trolls, Paid Patent Trolls Hundreds of Millions of Dollars

    Unified Patents, which helps crush software patents, takes note of RPX’s financial statements, which reveal the great extent to which RPX actually helped trolls rather than stop them



  5. IAM Together With Its Partner, IIPCC, is Lobbying the USPTO to Crush PTAB and Restore Patent Chaos

    Having handled over 8,000 petitions (according to Professor Lemley's Lex Machina), PTAB champions patent quality at the USPTO, so front groups of the litigation 'industry' creep in and attempt to lobby the likely next Director of the USPTO (inciting him against PTAB, as usual)



  6. Software Patents Are Still Dropping Like Flies in 2018, Thanks to Alice v CLS Bank (SCOTUS, 2014) and Section 101 (USPTO)

    Section 101 (§ 101) is thriving in the sense that it belatedly throws thousands of patents -- and frivolous lawsuits that depend on them -- down the chute; the patent trolls and their allies in the patent microcosm are very furious and they blame PTAB for actually doing its job (enforcing Section 101 when petitioned to do so)



  7. Patent Troll Finjan Looks Like It's About to Collapse, But Patent Maximalists Exploit It for Software Patents Promotion

    Patent trolls are struggling in their use of software patents; few (if any) of their patents are upheld as valid and those that miraculously remain in tact become the subject of fascination if not obsession among trolls' advocates



  8. The Attacks on PTAB Are Slowing Down and Attempts to Shield Oneself From Inter Partes Reviews (IPRs) Are Failing

    The Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) reapplies patent eligibility tests/guidelines in order to squash likely invalid patents; The litigation 'industry' is not happy about it, but its opposition to PTAB is also losing steam



  9. Links 21/1/2018: Wine 3.0 Coverage, KaOS 2018.01, Red Hat Among 'Admired Companies'

    Links for the day



  10. Blockchain Patents Are a Catastrophe in the Making as Trolls and Aggressors Accumulate Them

    As patents pertaining to blockchains continue to be granted -- even in defiance of Alice/Section 101 -- it seems likely that patent wars will sooner or later erupt, involving some large banks, IBM, and patent trolls associated with the notorious Erich Spangenberg



  11. Qualcomm/Broadcom/NXP Combination Would Become a Disastrous Patent Thicket Which Benefits Nobody

    Worried by the prospect of mega-mergers and takeovers which would put far too much market power (and monopoly through patents) in one place, governments and corporations speak out



  12. Patent Litigation in East Asia: Huawei, Samsung, HTC, Nintendo and COLOPL

    A quick look at some high-profile cases in which large Asian firms are embroiled; it seems clear that litigation activities have shifted eastwards (where actual production is done)



  13. Patent Litigation in the US is Down Sharply and Patent Trolls' Demise Has Much to Do With It

    Docket Navigator and Lex Machina both show a significant decline in litigation -- a trend which is likely to carry on now that TC Heartland is in tact (not for just half a year but a whole year) and PTAB completes another record year



  14. Cheating the US Patent System is a Lot Harder After TC Heartland

    Some new examples of tricks (and sometimes cheats) attempted by patent claimants and their representatives; it does not go as well as they hoped



  15. RPX Might Soon be Owned by Patent Troll Erich Spangenberg

    RPX, whose top executives are leaving and business is gradually dying, might end up as another 'asset' of patent trolls



  16. Patent Quality (Not Numbers) as an Asset: Oppositions, Appeals and Rejections at the EPO

    Benoît Battistelli wants a rubber-stamping operation (like INPI) rather than a functional patent office, but oppositions at the Office prove to be fruitful and many erroneously-granted patents are -- by extrapolation -- already being revoked (affecting, in retrospect, Battistelli's so-called 'results')



  17. Links 19/1/2018: Linux Journalism Fund, Grsecurity is SLAPPing Again

    Links for the day



  18. The EPO Ignores This Week's Decision Which Demonstrates Patent Scope Gone Awry; Software Patents Brought Up Again

    The worrisome growth of European Patents (EPs) — a 40% jump in one year in spite of decline in the number of patent applications — is a symptom of the poor judgment, induced largely by bad policies that impede examiners’ activities for the sake of so-called ‘production’; this week's decision regarding CRISPR is another wake-up call and software patents too need to be abolished (as a whole), in lieu with the European Patent Convention (EPC)



  19. WesternGeco v ION Geophysical (at the US Supreme Court) Won't Affect Patent Scope

    As WesternGeco v ION Geophysical is the main if not sole ‘major’ patent case that the US Supreme Court will deal with, it seems safe to say that nothing substantial will change for patent scope in the United States this year



  20. Links 18/1/2018: MenuLibre 2.1.4, Git 2.16 Released

    Links for the day



  21. Microsoft, Masking/Hiding Itself Behind Patent Trolls, is Still Engaging in Patent Extortion

    A review of Microsoft's ugly tactics, which involve coercion and extortion (for businesses to move to Azure and/or for OEMs to preload Microsoft software) while Microsoft-connected patent trolls help hide the "enforcement" element in this whole racket



  22. Patent Prosecution Highway: Low-Quality Patents for High-Frequency Patent Aggressors

    The EPO's race to the bottom of patent quality, combined with a "need for speed", is a recipe for disaster (except for litigation firms, patent bullies, and patent trolls)



  23. Press Coverage About the EPO Board Revoking Broad's CRISPR Patent

    Even though there's some decent coverage about yesterday's decision (e.g. from The Scientist), the patent microcosm googlebombs the news with stuff that serves to distract from or distort the outcome



  24. Links 17/1/2018: HHVM 3.24, WordPress 4.9.2

    Links for the day



  25. No Patents on Life (CRISPR), Said EPO Boards of Appeal Just a Few Hours Ago

    Broad spectacularly loses its key case, which may soon mean that any other patents on CRISPR too will be considered invalid



  26. Only Two Weeks on the Job, Judge Patrick Corcoran is Already Being Threatened by EPO Management

    The attack on a technical judge who is accused of relaying information many people had already relayed anyway (it was gossip at the whole Organisation for years) carries on as he is again being pushed around, just as many people predicted



  27. EPO Board of Appeal Has an Opportunity to Stop Controversial Patents on Life

    Patent maximalism at the EPO can be pushed aback slightly if the European appeal board decides to curtail CRISPR patents in a matter of days



  28. Links 16/1/2018: More on Barcelona, OSI at 20

    Links for the day



  29. 2018 Will be an Even Worse Year for Software Patents Because the US Supreme Court Shields Alice

    The latest picks (reviewed cases) of the Supreme Court of the United States signal another year with little or no hope for the software patents lobby; PTAB too is expected to endure after a record-breaking year, in which it invalidated a lot of software patents that had been erroneously granted



  30. Patent Trolls (Euphemised as “Public IP Companies”) Are Dying in the United States, But the Trouble Isn't Over

    The demise of various types of patent trolls, including publicly-traded trolls, is good news; but we take stock of the latest developments in order to better assess the remaining threat


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