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Eolas Sues World + Dog For AJAX Patent

kdawson posted more than 4 years ago | from the to-fix-patent-system-replace-judges-in-tyler-texas dept.

Patents 647

helfrich9000 writes "Eolas has filed suit against 23 companies (guess where), including Adobe, Amazon.com, Apple, eBay, Google, Yahoo!, JPMorgan, and Playboy. At issue are a pair of patents (US 7,599,985 and US 5,838,906), one of which (the '906) was successfully used in litigation against Microsoft Corp for a $565 million judgement. Says Dr. Michael D. Doyle, chairman of Eolas, 'We developed these technologies over 15 years ago and demonstrated them widely, years before the marketplace had heard of interactive applications embedded in Web pages tapping into powerful remote resources. Profiting from someone else's innovation without payment is fundamentally unfair. All we want is what's fair.'"

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laughable (5, Insightful)

drDugan (219551) | more than 4 years ago | (#30438492)

Profiting from someone else's innovation without payment is fundamentally unfair. All we want is what's fair.

There is ridiculous dishonesty in this assertion.

Of course profiting off someone else's work is unfair. Nothing about what the litigant or the defendants have done or will do relates in any way with "fair". If the world were "fair" every single human would have as an inalienable right free access to decent food, housing, healthcare, and security and working beyond that would be an optional choice to better their life. Humanity is far, far from this ideal, and everything we do now in the business world is *nothing* about fair, it is about power and capital, and having long chains of other humans working for the profit of those few who have learned how to escape or work the system. Remember more than half of your planet's population still farms their food by hand, and dies in large numbers when there are droughts.

"Profiting from someone else's innovation" is at the very basic essence of working capitalism. It an the assumption driving nearly all investment. Using capital to buy a stock, and having that stock rise in value, has the effect of making a profit off the wealth creation and innovation in that company. I don't take a position for or against that system it is highly efficient, when it works, at allocating resources and creating significant development.

But even beyond the nature of business and profit, these folks have gone down into the depths of corporate IP litigation, where the idealistic light of "fair" shines like smelly dirt. Lawsuits rarely have much to do with a high notion of justice; they are what you can pay for, and what you can win. To assert that ones actions are about "fair" when filing a corporate IP litigation lawsuit is patently absurd and frankly laughable.

Re:laughable (2, Insightful)

CannonballHead (842625) | more than 4 years ago | (#30438538)

. If the world were "fair" every single human would have as an inalienable right free access to decent food, housing, healthcare, and security and working beyond that would be an optional choice to better their life.

Who decided that all those things are what would be "fair" in a perfect world, might I ask?

Re:laughable (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30438566)

Abraham Maslow in his 1943 paper "A Theory of Human Motivation" cf levels on Physiology and Safety.

Re:laughable (4, Informative)

humphrm (18130) | more than 4 years ago | (#30438764)

Maslow never proposed a social utopia where all of his D-needs were met by society or government. In fact, he describes self-actualization as a "motivator", i.e. what makes people achieve more success in life for themselves. His theories are generally accepted as theories of personality and motivation, not social or societal ideals.

Re:laughable (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30438544)

If the world were "fair" every single human would have as an inalienable right free access to decent food, housing, healthcare, and security and working beyond that would be an optional choice to better their life.

Disagreed. This is a socialist utopia. It can't even be called Marxist because Marx postulated working - socialists generally don't.

So - Free food, housing, healthcare and security, and working for any of this is optional? And any situation which does not fulfil this shitdream is 'unfair'?

Sadly you'll probably be modded 'insightful', because socialist moral concepts have spread a lot these days. Evil dies slowly and grows quickly if it's not fought.

Re:laughable (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30438692)

As opposed to the capitalist moral morass, where "fair" is whatever you pay for.

Both options are fucked up.

Re:laughable (2, Insightful)

Shakrai (717556) | more than 4 years ago | (#30438902)

As opposed to the capitalist moral morass, where "fair" is whatever you pay for.

The inherent vice of capitalism is the unequal sharing of blessing. The inherent virtue of socialism is the equal sharing of misery.

Re:laughable (1, Troll)

the simurgh (1327825) | more than 4 years ago | (#30439052)

better everyone miserable than a slim margin having the right to be happy while the majority suffer and die as unwitting slaves.

Re:laughable (1, Insightful)

Shakrai (717556) | more than 4 years ago | (#30439092)

Bullshit.

Re:laughable (0)

selven (1556643) | more than 4 years ago | (#30439154)

I agree with you fully.

If your happiness increases when others are just as miserable as you are, that makes you a sadist.

Re:laughable (3, Insightful)

Gudeldar (705128) | more than 4 years ago | (#30438742)

I fail to see what is so evil about socialist/communist ideas. They don't work in practice but that doesn't make them evil.

Re:laughable (4, Insightful)

Shakrai (717556) | more than 4 years ago | (#30438828)

I fail to see what is so evil about socialist/communist ideas. They don't work in practice but that doesn't make them evil.

Taking the fruits of your neighbors labor to supply for yourself would be called stealing if it was done directly and without the government as a middle man.

Re:laughable (5, Insightful)

hondo77 (324058) | more than 4 years ago | (#30438892)

Taking the fruits of your neighbors labor to supply for yourself would be called stealing if it was done directly and without the government as a middle man.

Huh? My bosses do that every day.

Re:laughable (2, Insightful)

Shakrai (717556) | more than 4 years ago | (#30438940)

Presumably they pay you?

Re:laughable (3, Insightful)

ClosedSource (238333) | more than 4 years ago | (#30439030)

Presumably they pay you with all the fruit. Paying isn't labor.

Re:laughable (2, Insightful)

Chibi Merrow (226057) | more than 4 years ago | (#30438974)

No, they pay you for your labor as per the entirely voluntary contract of employment you have entered in with them, which is pretty much exactly the opposite.

Re:laughable (5, Insightful)

ClosedSource (238333) | more than 4 years ago | (#30439076)

There is no "contract of employment". They pay you what they want to pay you and get rid of you at will.

The only contracts involved are the ones that say you can't work for a competitor or use the knowledge you gained on the job to get a better one.

Re:laughable (1)

selven (1556643) | more than 4 years ago | (#30439176)

And you do whatever work you want to do and leave them at will, causing them to lose thousands of precious dollars on training costs. It's voluntary on both sides, with no theft involved.

Re:laughable (4, Insightful)

Gadget_Guy (627405) | more than 4 years ago | (#30439132)

Taking the fruits of your neighbors labor to supply for yourself would be called stealing if it was done directly and without the government as a middle man.

But if your neighbors are taking the fruits of their neighbors' labor to supply themselves, then the whole system becomes fair again. Sure you have to work out a system of apportioning work allotments so that one person is not being ask to provide a disproportionate of labor, but that is up to the society to figure out.

Each society might have different ideas of what constitutes work. A hippie commune might deem poetry to be a valid and valued product, whereas some other collective might only rank something that contributes materially to the society. This determination could be done democratically. Democracy and communism are not mutually exclusive.

Re:laughable (0, Troll)

Shakrai (717556) | more than 4 years ago | (#30439206)

Democracy and communism are not mutually exclusive.

Communism and freedom/self-determination are mutually exclusive.

Re:laughable (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30439242)

Freedom is irrelevant. Self-determination is irrelevant. You must comply.

The Borg are perfect communists. No regard for the individual.

Inheritances (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30439134)

When the playing field is completely level than you can preach to me about "stealing the fruits of my neighbors".

Re:laughable (5, Insightful)

agrif (960591) | more than 4 years ago | (#30439188)

Taking someone else's car in exchange for little pieces of green paper would be called stealing if it wasn't backed by the government.

I agree with the grandparent, here: socialism and communism are not inherently evil ideas, any more than capitalism and federalism.

Re:laughable (1)

Abcd1234 (188840) | more than 4 years ago | (#30439216)

Who said anything about "taking"? In a truly communist society, people give voluntarily. Furthermore, there is no "government" as you refer to it.

No, what you describe is a dictatorship, plain and simple.

Re:laughable (1)

suomynonAyletamitlU (1618513) | more than 4 years ago | (#30439246)

Taking the fruits of your neighbors labor to supply for yourself would be called stealing if it was done directly and without the government as a middle man.

Only if he wasn't getting what was due him as well. You're assuming that the system will only be fair to some and not others, which is kind of exactly opposite the point. Again, may not work in practice, but you don't have to be quite THAT cynical.

If you and your neighbor both work enough to repay your debt to society, and he's equally likely to get what he needs whether you take his specific labor or not, where is the discrepancy? The only thing I can think is if that particular item has sentimental value.

Note IANAC

Re:laughable (0, Troll)

Shatrat (855151) | more than 4 years ago | (#30438888)

Socialism/communism implies making peoples decisions for them.
If freedom is good then socialism is necessarily evil.

Re:laughable (0)

supernova_hq (1014429) | more than 4 years ago | (#30438952)

You sir have a very warped idea of Communism. Just because every person who has attempted to implement it on a large scale has been either a complete douche or dumbass, does not mean that the whole idea is flawed. There are MANY small-scale communist groups that work very well and have been doing so for decades without problem.

Re:laughable (2, Insightful)

Man On Pink Corner (1089867) | more than 4 years ago | (#30439012)

There are MANY small-scale communist groups that work very well and have been doing so for decades without problem.

And as long as they don't shoot you for trying to leave, there's not a thing in the world wrong with that.

Re:laughable (2, Insightful)

H0p313ss (811249) | more than 4 years ago | (#30439162)

There are MANY small-scale communist groups that work very well and have been doing so for decades without problem.

And as long as they don't shoot you for trying to leave, there's not a thing in the world wrong with that.

Excellent point, socialism and freedom are in no way contradictory.

Re:laughable (1)

supernova_hq (1014429) | more than 4 years ago | (#30439184)

Agreed. In fact, communism is actually very popular among some farming communities. The idea of communism is simply "sharing", so one farmer will buy a tracter, another buys a homogeniser, etc. and they simply share them with each other instead of everyone needing to get one of each.

Actually, the place I see communist ideology implemented the most (for me anyways) is OpenSource Software. Read some of the original comunist books (not china/ussr) and you will quickly see that it's basically the same thing.

Now if only the cellphone companies would catch on and share towers instead of setting up 3 times as many as we need and STILL not getting proper coverage :(

Re:laughable (4, Insightful)

nebaz (453974) | more than 4 years ago | (#30439174)

The whole idea is flawed. The reason that Communism fails on a large scale is that given enough people, someone will be selfish enough to game the system for his own advantage, and refuse to play nice. To avoid this, careful group membership selection, or harsh enforcement are required.

Re:laughable (5, Insightful)

h4rr4r (612664) | more than 4 years ago | (#30439006)

WTF?
Are you 12?
All civil society will have some amount of decisions and freedom removed from the individual. We give up that freedom to have a civilization. More or less of that is not evil, it is just a choice.

Also socialism and communism are not interchangeable.

Re:laughable (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30439220)

In other words:

Socialism/communism implies taking the results of people's labor by the force of law, under the pretense of creating class equality.

If private ownership of what you earn is good then socialism is necessarily evil.

Fixed that for the GP. (Incidentally, I agree that such a thing is evil.)

Re:laughable (1)

ClosedSource (238333) | more than 4 years ago | (#30439106)

I think you mean "If capitalism is good then socialism is necessarily evil".

Re:laughable (0, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30438896)

Just the mention of socialist ideas is enough to cause a conservative to lose his erection during the Ayn Rand circle-jerk. Then he has to eat the biscuit.

Re:laughable (1)

Saint Stephen (19450) | more than 4 years ago | (#30438906)

Read Darkness at Noon.

Re:laughable (1)

Chabil Ha' (875116) | more than 4 years ago | (#30438942)

I fail to see what is so evil about socialist/communist ideas. They don't work in practice but that doesn't make them evil.

Probably because you have to do evil things to people in order to practice them.

Re:laughable (1)

Spewns (1599743) | more than 4 years ago | (#30439230)

You're confused. It'd be nice if most would educate themselves as to what communism actually is instead of endlessly parroting paranoid, propagandistic nonsense. It'd take 30 seconds on Wikipedia. Honestly.

Re:laughable (1)

shentino (1139071) | more than 4 years ago | (#30439026)

It's "evil" because there is no such thing as a truly communist economy.

Greed is an inherent part of human nature, and anyone in a position of power will, if able, always exploit that power to his or her own advantage. Look at china, the heart of communist country. No matter what the virtues are in theory, the bureaucrats are so corrupt that it's effectively a mafia dividing up territory instead of a communist republic dividing things up fairly.

Communism only works if the government can be trusted. Humans cannot be trusted, and government is run by humans. Ergo, communism doesn't work.

Re:laughable (1)

TapeCutter (624760) | more than 4 years ago | (#30438776)

Sigh, he said it would be fair and implied it was impossible. Go check under your bed if you're looking for evil socialists.

Re:laughable (2, Insightful)

pookemon (909195) | more than 4 years ago | (#30438790)

Of course, you've read the post as "and working is optional" not "working BEYOND THAT is optional". So "fair" is getting a minimum level of comfort in your life - which you may or may not have to work for depending on whether the work is available (heck, everyone has to work, but everyone gets more leave as the work is spread thinner) - and if you want an increased level of comfort you have to work that little bit harder to get it.

But lets just attack someone who thinks that "fair" is that everyone should be entitled to a minimum level of comfort in their life and rant about the "evils" of there not being exploitation of some people while others get what they don't deserve.

"Oh but I work hard for what I get" - but others work harder for MUCH less - and don't have the opportunity to spend their "free time" on some worthless rant like your own.

Re:laughable (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30439172)

on some worthless rant like your own.

.
LOL

Mod parent +5 funny

Re:laughable (1)

libkarl2 (1010619) | more than 4 years ago | (#30438814)

Evil dies slowly and grows quickly if it's not fought.

AND... when it posts anonymously.

Re:laughable (3, Insightful)

drDugan (219551) | more than 4 years ago | (#30438876)

Note that access to information, education and entertainment, relationships, friendships and intimacy and many other basic human needs are not on that list. Travel, personal property, reproduction, and many other norms we accept as given are also not on that list. What I wrote was that basic human needs for safety and survival would be afforded as a right to all people in a "fair" and idealized world, and that people could work for a life more than that.

I stand by that assertion: such a place would be fair. Would it work? Who knows. European countries offer a reasonable safety net and seem to be doing OK. Compared to some countries, crime there is lower, people are smarter, incarceration is lower, people are happier and healthier, drug use is lower. An idealized world like this probably wouldn't be nearly as free as some people experience today, but it would be fair. Personally, I'd choose freedom over fairness when they conflict, but offering a real safety net for human survival and safety would eliminate the fear that drives many toward the ills we see in the world today, and it would make the world a much nicer place.

If you want to label it a "socialist utopia", fine, call it hoogamazoola for all I care, it doesn't change the essence of the point: life now, on earth, is not even close to fair in any sense, nor do people even give the idea of "fair" a reasonable hearing in social discourse. Marx was right about one thing in the mid 1800's: his premise was there is enough. It was true then, and still is today.

Re:laughable (3, Insightful)

burnin1965 (535071) | more than 4 years ago | (#30438916)

Re:laughable (Score:1, Insightful)
Marx postulated working - socialists generally don't.

WTF, somebody actually modded this idiot coward insightful?

Socialism isn't that far off from Capitalism and it requires that people work, the biggest difference is in the compensation the workers are given for their labor. Socialism isn't necessary in a Capitalist society as long as the workers are compensated enough to meet their needs and be satisfied with their standard of living. When basic needs can't be met but are financially viable based on the economy their labor drives then you will see moves towards Socialism.

Its fine to disagree about what works and what doesn't but marking the village idiot as insightful because it makes you feel good doesn't make it insightful. It just means you've joined into the circle jerk.

Re:laughable (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30438986)

bravo. true...

Re:laughable (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30439156)

If the world were "fair" every single human would have as an inalienable right free access to decent food, housing, healthcare, and security and working beyond that would be an optional choice to better their life.

Disagreed. This is a socialist utopia. It can't even be called Marxist because Marx postulated working - socialists generally don't.

So - Free food, housing, healthcare and security, and working for any of this is optional? And any situation which does not fulfil this shitdream is 'unfair'?

Sadly you'll probably be modded 'insightful', because socialist moral concepts have spread a lot these days. Evil dies slowly and grows quickly if it's not fought.

I am a proponent of providing people what they need to survive and eventually work towards a better place in life, and I'm not sure even the parent meant that it should be work free. Basically, if you refuse to do anything, when you are able to contribute, then I would think the food and housing should be the minimal to be healthy, and even that should perhaps be replaced with other incentives to get moving and doing something. For instance the food could be less and less palatable. The housing could get to little more than a cubicle. Equally, I don't think people should pay other people to sit around and have kids, or at the very least there should be diminishing amounts of support for the additional children and perhaps the suggestion of some kind of reversible sterilization. We need to encourage people to go to College, so I could see limited subsidies there, particularly in areas that are of immediate interest. For instance, some Teachers, Engineers, and Doctors who go into General Practice. For that matter some subsidies of most college curriculum, might have its place, provided you included a requirement that the skills learned must be used and such, or you owe back the difference.

Basically level the playing field and encourage hard work while at the same time discouraging slacking. Of course, our schools themselves need to probably be in session longer and teach more, that is if we really want to compete in the world.

Re:laughable (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30438612)

I agree and to a greater extent this is why I feel that IP (especially regarding computer programs) is laughable in general. Literally anything is possible when talking about virtual environments and manipulation of data. This reminds me of the recent patent that MS was awarded for what basically amounts to XML. Now they were awarded the patent, but they didn't invent anything. I look at it like I look at legos. Every programming language has a set of legos. Just because you used certain pieces of a premade set to do something doesn't mean you "own" that configuration. It's like saying I copyrighted the C chord and if you play a C an E and a G anywhere you owe me. Look back at history and realize that Elisha Gray got SCREWED because of a piece of arbitrary paperwork.

Re:laughable (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30438668)

If the world were "fair" every single human would have as an inalienable right free access to decent food, housing, healthcare, and security and working beyond that would be an optional choice to better their life.

You and I have very different definitions of "fair." All of those things have to be provided by someone. It's not fair to force the people providing those things to work for below market prices... and it certainly is not fair to tax working people to provide those things to people that are very capable of working, but choose not to.

Me? I value freedom. As long as I have freedom I know I'll be able to provide for myself and my family. However, if the government wants to force me to provide for others as well, then I am not so sure. I am already forced to pay into a medical system that will go broke in 2017, before I am eligible to receive benefits. I'm also forced to pay into a retirement system that will go broke in 2038, before I am eligible to receive benefits. I'm not sure how much more I can afford to pay for other people.

Re:laughable (1)

icebraining (1313345) | more than 4 years ago | (#30438958)

and it certainly is not fair to tax working people to provide those things to people that are very capable of working, but choose not to.

Then there's the problem of those who *do* work and don't get those things either.

Re:laughable (0)

h4rr4r (612664) | more than 4 years ago | (#30439024)

Move to Somalia. It is a truly a libertarian utopia.

Re:laughable (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30439124)

Except, you know, all libertarians are in favor of the rule of law, something that Ethiopa lacks.

Nice strawman though. Perhaps you can have a debate with Sarah Palin? You can accuse her of wanting to turn the US into Somalia, and she can accuse you of supporting death panels. It might be entertaining for the Fox News/MSNBC crowd.

Re:laughable (1)

TapeCutter (624760) | more than 4 years ago | (#30438704)

"To assert that ones actions are about "fair" when filing a corporate IP litigation lawsuit is patently absurd and frankly laughable."

Great post, but I have to warn you I already have a patent on the absurd.

Re:laughable (1)

forestwalkerjoe (915811) | more than 4 years ago | (#30438984)

amazing how your idea of business is skewed and your idea of FAIR only applies if "you" are making money. The world has not made a legally binding agreement before every one was poor and hungry.. but patents are that agreement for software and other computerized ideas. Supporting only the monopoly or the BIG dog's idea of fair is not healthy. Want to know why our country is so messed up in Finance? the idea that Capitalism is about LYING or CHEATING ,stealing and oppressing. Just because THEY do lie and cheat.. shouldn't become the WAY of it.. the standard we all some how agree to. Fairness laws are there for a reason. What ever happened to HONEST business?

All we want is what's fair (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30438496)

Oh, and money. Lots of money. In fact, forget the fair thing, and give us the money.

Re:All we want is what's fair (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30438766)

From the website it looks like the management team consists of the Chairman in question, and two lawyers. Go figure.

developed these technologies over 15 years ago... (3, Informative)

Locutus (9039) | more than 4 years ago | (#30438530)

then the 17 years of protection by the patents is pretty much over. And if they published this information before they filed the patent then it's now in public domain anyways.

LoB

Re:developed these technologies over 15 years ago. (2, Informative)

zach_the_lizard (1317619) | more than 4 years ago | (#30438662)

And if they published this information before they filed the patent then it's now in public domain anyways. LoB

I believe in the US you are allowed to file one year after you publish. In Europe I believe this is not the case

Re:developed these technologies over 15 years ago. (2, Informative)

nacturation (646836) | more than 4 years ago | (#30438722)

then the 17 years of protection by the patents is pretty much over.

Don't worry. They've taken that into account and will now only pretty much sue the pants off those companies.

And if they published this information before they filed the patent then it's now in public domain anyways.

In some jurisdictions. From BitLaw [bitlaw.com] :

One of the most important lessons to learn from this requirement is that there is a one year period after the first pbulic [sic] dislcosure or offer for sale of an invention during which a patent application must be filed. [...] Although the United States grants the one year grace period described in the last two rules above, most other countries do not grant such a period.

Re:developed these technologies over 15 years ago. (4, Informative)

Dachannien (617929) | more than 4 years ago | (#30438862)

The earlier patent gets 17 years from the date of issue, which was in 1998 (so it expires in 2015 as long as they pay their maintenance fees), because it was filed before June 8, 1995 and gets the longer of 17 years from issue or 20 years from filing.

Ironically, the later-filed patent gets 20 years from the earliest date of filing, i.e., the date at which the earlier-filed application was filed (because the later-filed patent is a continuation of a continuation of the earlier-filed patent), which means it expires in 2014.

Of course, the later-filed patent has a patent term adjustment of about four years, so it actually expires in 2018.

I hope this clears things up for you. ;)

More power to 'em (2, Insightful)

i_want_you_to_throw_ (559379) | more than 4 years ago | (#30438580)

Given that the defendants are also ridiculously litigious about software patents, I say more power to Eolas. I think the whole idea of software patents is absurd anyway but if there is going to be pain suffered by anyone then it needs to be suffered by all. Adobe, Amazon.com, Apple, eBay, Google, Yahoo!, JPMorgan, and Playboy are all probably really saddened by the fact that they didn't come up with this themselves quicker.

Re:More power to 'em (2, Interesting)

dikdik (1696426) | more than 4 years ago | (#30438686)

Seriously- software patenting is a rich boys club; or another manifestation of the motto "the one with the most money wins". There are thousands of patents like this; scads of unoriginal montages of half-baked and recycled ideas, cleverly disguised and slopped up to the USPO, and approved, cha ching. It takes this kind of outrage and political pressure to get one patent reviewed. What chance does the small software company have protecting itself against patents with a lineage of prior art? It's also a positive feedback system; patents breed patents, just look at the crazy exponential explosion of USPO patents over the last five years. And sitting in the middle of the web is the black widow, the USPO, raking in the fees while spending precious little fix the spiraling problem. Once practical answer: maybe register your software company in the Cayman Islands or Vanuatu, or some other such place and take your international profits offshore. Better defensive legal system; and better protection against the system fueled by common-revenue-oriented legislation and wayward lawyers.

Re:More power to 'em (5, Interesting)

supernova_hq (1014429) | more than 4 years ago | (#30439020)

Try living in Canada. Canada ruled a long time ago that software patents are not allowed. However due to the patent treaty we signed with the US and half of Europe, now they are.

If you are confused, this means that Canadians are not allowed to be awarded software patents (good), but still need to abide by software patents awarded to Americans and Europeans or be SUED (very bad).

If you are STILL confused, welcome to the club :(

Re:More power to 'em (3, Insightful)

meerling (1487879) | more than 4 years ago | (#30438714)

It is not reasonable to allow spurious or unfounded litigations simply because the target does so themselves.
That would set a very bad precedent.

Now as to this case, I have no idea if it's a load of b.s. since I can't seem to get the article to load.
Maybe it got slashdotted. :)

Personally, I'm sick of the software patent scams, just slap them back to copyrights like it used to be.
As long as we're wishing for things, eliminate business patents also.

Re:More power to 'em (1)

TapeCutter (624760) | more than 4 years ago | (#30438796)

Playboy are into softporn not software.

Re:More power to 'em (5, Insightful)

thePowerOfGrayskull (905905) | more than 4 years ago | (#30438806)

Given that the defendants are also ridiculously litigious about software patents,

Every case like this that is lost by the defendants serves to further legitimize this type of patent. If they win this, any project using Ajax is at risk, including many popular FOSS forum and CMS packages. So you'll pardon me if I'm less than enthusiastic about this, regardless of who is defending.

Re:More power to 'em (2, Funny)

Shakrai (717556) | more than 4 years ago | (#30438850)

Adobe, Amazon.com, Apple, eBay, Google, Yahoo!, JPMorgan, and Playboy are all probably really saddened by the fact that they didn't come up with this themselves quicker.

I'm not going to stand by and let you insult Playboy by lumping them in with the likes of Adobe, Apple and JPMorgan ;)

Re:More power to 'em (1)

BikeHelmet (1437881) | more than 4 years ago | (#30439088)

Okay, I know Adobe, Amazon, Apple, eBay, and Microsoft like to wield their patents like hammers - but has Google ever done it?

Not to mention all the small startups that could be harmed by a patent troll if these guys win.

Re:More power to 'em (1)

matzahboy (1656011) | more than 4 years ago | (#30439194)

Lol. Google wasn't even around 15 years ago. It was founded in 1998.

Trolling the trolls (0, Redundant)

MrEricSir (398214) | more than 4 years ago | (#30438636)

It's a good thing I have a patent on patent trolling, because I'm going to be able to sue these guys for millions.

Re:Trolling the trolls (2, Insightful)

interkin3tic (1469267) | more than 4 years ago | (#30438846)

You should sue east texas as a co-conspirator in your patentented patent trolling violation. After all, without their help, trolling wouldn't be as profitable.

A Modest Proposal, but... (1)

dikdik (1696426) | more than 4 years ago | (#30438672)

Why don't we create an industry funded board whose job is to make sure that silly software patents are no longer awarded? Oh wait... The industry only dislikes SOME software patents, while anyone who cares to look will see that all software patents threaten innovation and are largely anti-competitive [gnu.org] because they rig the game in favor of big corporations. Unfortunately, software patents have become the last hurdle that the proprietary world can throw at the free software movement. Moglen and Lessig are both very persuasive (If you got a bit of free time, read "Free Culture" by the latter) I hope that upon hearing their arguments European Commission will be wise enough to reconsider its position on software patents.

Eolas, the bogus patent king? (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30438698)

Looks to me like they patented distributed computing embedded into a web browser. Anyone have more background on the patents (I lost interest in trying to interpret patent-speak after page 3 or so of their patent application). It seems to be merely abstracting a technology seen in mainframes and mainframe clients (remote computing), into what could be described as the biggest mainframe in the world (the internet).

Good (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30438702)

This is great, because the problem is not Eolas, it's the patent system. Congress will never fix it until their corporate masters are in pain.

Sadly they didn't sue Slashdot... (4, Funny)

gzipped_tar (1151931) | more than 4 years ago | (#30438708)

... otherwise we could have had a chance of removing this godawful AJAX UI for good.

Re:Sadly they didn't sue Slashdot... (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30438754)

Who gives a fuck? Slashdot is a dick smoker site anymore. CmdrDildo can eat shit.

ma8e (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30438748)

Bullshit (4, Insightful)

dissy (172727) | more than 4 years ago | (#30438752)

'We developed these technologies over 15 years ago and demonstrated them widely, years before the marketplace had heard of interactive applications embedded in Web pages tapping into powerful remote resources.

Bullshit

Show me the web site that you made providing an interactive web app back in 1994, only one year after the web was even invented.

Don't have one? No one did? Thought as much...

Re:Bullshit (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30438856)

Show me the web site that you made providing an interactive web app back in 1994, only one year after the web was even invented.

Don't have one? No one did? Thought as much...

Of course no one did (otherwise they wouldn't be able to claim it as there idea)

the patent is on a concept and demo's don't mean public sites for all to enjoy..

You realize almost every new concept exists as technology showcases before they make there appearance in the general public right?

Re:Bullshit (1)

supernova_hq (1014429) | more than 4 years ago | (#30439046)

Doesn't a patent need to be very explicit in how something is performed? Last I checked, the browser technology (specifically Javascript) available now wasn't even conseived in 1944.

Re:Bullshit (2, Informative)

lennier (44736) | more than 4 years ago | (#30439096)

"Last I checked, the browser technology (specifically Javascript) available now wasn't even conseived in 1944."

Not as such, but Vannevar Bush [theatlantic.com] was getting close. Does microfilm count as prior art?

Re:Bullshit (2, Informative)

Zebra_X (13249) | more than 4 years ago | (#30439122)

Sadly, no. An actual working prototype is not needed to file for a patent. All you really need (I'm no patent lawyer) is a fairly detailed description of an idea. You also need to search for any ideas similar to yours. If applicable you may need to reference them as works.

I believe the only way this can be overturned is if there is evidence of prior art - (possibly) a working implementation of the idea before the patent was filed.

Also, it's not any particular implementation that they are going after, it is the general "method" of how plugins work within the browser that is the violation.

Open Source (3, Insightful)

tsotha (720379) | more than 4 years ago | (#30438798)

From my perspective, one of the key advantages to open source software is it will make busting these kinds of patents a whole lot easier. There's almost certainly prior art somewhere for nearly every software patent on the books, but it's all in unsearchable proprietary code that may or may not have been deleted years ago. As more code gets added to sourceforge and other repositories it's going to get a lot easier to say "Hey, this thing you patented was done twenty years ago in an obscure open source project nobody uses anymore. And I can prove it."

Re:Open Source (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30438866)

Open Source neither helps nor hurts this sort of litigation. The point at where prior art is usefull is at the time the patent is applied for and with the fucked up patenting system most patents get through. MS had this problem on the previous BS patents, even though their was a ton of prior art it was not admissable as the case was purely about whether the patent applied to what they were doing, these cases are never about whether the patent itself is valid (you have to start a seperate case with the patent office about that).

Re:Open Source (5, Insightful)

gujo-odori (473191) | more than 4 years ago | (#30438962)

Partially correct. That is one point where prior art is useful. This situation is another. If someone sues you for patent violations and you can find clear prior art, then you can attempt a flanking maneuver: file suit to have the patent invalidated. If you can invalidate the patent through prior art, you don't even have to fight the frontal battle of proving that you aren't violating the patent.

Can someone explain the "dog" reference? (1)

Fry-kun (619632) | more than 4 years ago | (#30438818)

I don't get it -_-

Re:Can someone explain the "dog" reference? (2, Informative)

Shatrat (855151) | more than 4 years ago | (#30438928)

More than everyone = Everyone and his dog.

Re:Can someone explain the "dog" reference? (1)

supernova_hq (1014429) | more than 4 years ago | (#30439058)

You are the dog, prepare to get sued.

Re:Can someone explain the "dog" reference? (1)

h4rr4r (612664) | more than 4 years ago | (#30439166)

"Sieg Heil" means "Hail victory" not "For the Win". You might want to fix your tagline there.

Already reported (2, Interesting)

Stan Vassilev (939229) | more than 4 years ago | (#30438834)

http://yro.slashdot.org/story/09/10/06/2055214/Eolas-To-Sue-Apple-Google-and-21-Others?from=rss [slashdot.org]

What I wonder is, we've had little information since. Reactions from the companies involved in the suit? I only heard that GoDaddy released a statement "We're not guilty and we'll defend ourselves vigorously". The other companies have withheld comment.

Re:Already reported (1)

GumphMaster (772693) | more than 4 years ago | (#30439126)

I expect that the other companies will not say anything in public that would jeopardise their ability to make a behind-closed-doors accommodation with the litigating party, or with each other to cooperatively fight. Saying "we're not guilty and we'll see you in court" out loud is as good as saying "the other party is full of sh*t" and could possibly taint settlement possibilities (?). If you don't have a counter patent to play whack-a-mole with then it will go to court and be decided by third parties, so what you say is less important.

inaccurate title (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30438918)

There is no Dog corporation in the lawsuit

Comonly used patents shouldn't stand (1)

werfu (1487909) | more than 4 years ago | (#30438976)

Commonly used patented technologies that didn't got enforced for a few years should lose their patented status and fall under public domain. This is plain common sense. The best examples are FAT technologies, which most of the world embedded stuff use. Why should MS let everybody use it for years than once if got global domination try to enforce the patent on everybody and cash in. That's just evil. (Patent trolls are evil, but they shouldn't exist first, that's because of the boggus patent system in the US).

Is there an echo in here? (1)

kennykb (547805) | more than 4 years ago | (#30439014)

The news story was dated October 6, and I'm pretty sure I remember reading about it in Slashdot a couple of months ago. Anyway, Mike loves jerking the chain of the legal system. I'm making popcorn.

"Eolas" (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30439018)

I invented the name "Eolas" for a story I wrote in 1972 (6th grade).

All their base are belong to me.

Re:"Eolas" (1)

MickyTheIdiot (1032226) | more than 4 years ago | (#30439082)

So? I invented 6th grade! You all owe ME money.

I say we pay them. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30439054)

Nobody else can get any money for doing this type of thing ever again then right?

US 7,599,985 is the friggin internet!! (2, Funny)

purpleraison (1042004) | more than 4 years ago | (#30439062)

What a sad, pathetic joke we in the USA are subjecting the world to when a patent such as "US 7,599,985 " exists.

In short, it is basically defining the interaction of a computer with a server.

This is exactly the same as if I were able to patent the idea of 'placing one foot in front of the other in order to achieve motion'

hey i patented that motion (1)

CHRONOSS2008 (1226498) | more than 4 years ago | (#30439186)

and doing it multiple times as well to continue motion
as a derivitive LOL
and i patented picking up pencils to draw with

WOW imagine all the artists , writers and businesses that NOW OWE ME

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