Bonum Certa Men Certa

Patents Roundup: Microsoft and Linux

Sir Charles Groves

Summary: Sunny day here today, so here are just some patent 'quickies'

TiVo is a patent nuisance to everyone. Despite using Linux, it is a patent aggressor [1, 2, 3], just like Akamai. And just because it uses Linux (and applies TiVoization to it) does not magically make it a nice company. TiVo carries on with its journey of aggravation:

TiVo said Wednesday that it is suing AT&T and Verizon over three DVR patents. The complaints seek damages and a permanent injunction.

Simply put, TiVo is pursuing the same legal playbook it followed against Dish/EchoStar. The patents in question include 6,233,389, 7,529,465 and 7,493,015.

Nintendo has just spared a lot of money to save itself from the likes of TiVo.

Nintendo Co., the maker of the top- selling Wii video-game console, settled a U.S. trade fight that could have resulted in a U.S. import ban of the popular gaming systems.

Nintendo and Hillcrest Laboratories Inc. filed a notice with the U.S. International Trade Commission on Aug. 21 that they reached a settlement of patent-infringement claims before the agency. Financial details were blacked out in the copy of the agreement made available to the public.

The patent system may often be characterised as a system of honour and mutual respect, but what we find here is a system of embargoes and strangulation. There is also such a thing as a "nasty patent" and Microsoft shows exactly what that can be:

Microsoft is seeking to patent a method for using a popular human-verification technology on the Web to deliver advertising to a captive audience.

We wrote about it two days ago, just as we mentioned HP and Dell helping Microsoft against patents. Here is another article about it.

Then there is Tuxera [1, 2], which The Register is falsely describing as a "Linux vendor". Why are they showing off selling out anyway? Is Microsoft paying them?

To finish off on a brighter side, here is an entertaining new video.


We wrote about this patent application right here. Someone has also just sent us what he calls "EPO propaganda", saying that it is "a picture taken of an EPO job advertisement.." [click to enlarge]

EPO propaganda

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