Beta

×

Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!

Google Buys Foxconn Patents For Head-Mounted Tech

timothy posted about a year ago | from the windows-on-the-world dept.

Google 38

An anonymous reader writes "Google has snapped up a parcel of patents from Hon Hai Precision Industry, the Taiwanese electronic manufacturer more commonly known as Foxconn, in a move seemingly designed to bolster its Glass headsets against potential competitors. In a statement obtained by The Wall Street Journal, Hon Hai described the patents sold to the Chocolate Factory as 'Head Mounted Technology' that can create virtual images 'superimposed on a real-world view.'"

cancel ×

38 comments

Sorry! There are no comments related to the filter you selected.

Scoamf: "Ah, geez..." (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44662941)

Somewhere in the Oval Office in 2015...

Scoamf: "Dammit, the Syrians are up to no good again with their chemical weapons! Send in the cruise missiles!"

SecDef: "I'm sorry sir, that's impossible. You had all the carriers sold for scrap to help offset your personal first-class travel budget against sequestration."

Scoamf: "Well then, send in Seal Team Six after Assad!"

SecDef: "That can't happen either sir. You had them all court-martialed on trumped-up hatecrime charges because one of them publicly supported that rodeo clown that ridiculed you."

Scoamf: "Oh for God's sake! Then send in the Navy!"

SecDef: "Unfortunately even that is not do-able sir. You decommissioned the Navy and gave the whole thing to Oprah as a gift so that she has more muscle to back up her outrageously-priced purse perusal requests in Switzerland."

Scoamf: "Ah, geez..."

At least (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44662951)

At least we can test the new gay drug on Bradley Manning. It will totally discredit him and server as a real test before we spray the Middle East

isn't there prior art (2)

Chrisq (894406) | about a year ago | (#44662955)

isn't there prior art in head-up displays used by airforce pilots for decades?

Re:isn't there prior art (3, Insightful)

kthreadd (1558445) | about a year ago | (#44663147)

It's a patent. Your point was ...?

Re:isn't there prior art (1)

slick7 (1703596) | about a year ago | (#44666599)

It's a patent. Your point was ...?

...for sharks?

Re:isn't there prior art (1)

ShanghaiBill (739463) | about a year ago | (#44664949)

isn't there prior art in head-up displays used by airforce pilots for decades?

These aren't patents for the general concept of HUD. They are patents for specific implementation methods. ProTip: To understand a patent, you need to actually look at the patent and read the claims. The Slashdot summary is seldom sufficient.

Against or because of? (2)

AmiMoJo (196126) | about a year ago | (#44662965)

Google generally doesn't use it patents for attacking other companies, only for defence. It seems more likely that they are just making sure some troll doesn't sue them later on when they claim to have invented Glass in the mid 90s or something.

Re: Against or because of? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44662979)

Well that is mainly because they never really invented something new, except Earth.

Re: Against or because of? (4, Informative)

tlambert (566799) | about a year ago | (#44662991)

Well that is mainly because they never really invented something new, except Earth.

I filed 2 patents while I was at Google. One of my colleagues filed 5. On the floor where I worked in a single building, I believe the total was 106 over the period of time we had all been there. Other groups turned in smaller numbers, but some, such as the "Google Van" and "Self Driving car" and "Google X" groups turned in more. As long as you count employee inventions assigned to the company, I'd have to say Google invents quite a lot.

Re: Against or because of? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44663015)

Terry, baby! Long time no see! How's it going, bud? How are the kids these days?

- Steve

Re: Against or because of? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44663097)

Filing patents, and being granted patents, does not equate to having 'invented' a thing.

There is a difference between innovation and gaming the patent system.

Of course if you just claim you 'do no evil' then noone will notice.

Re: Against or because of? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44663141)

yet a lot of these are obvious. just another sign that our patent system is a joke.

Re: Against or because of? (0)

serviscope_minor (664417) | about a year ago | (#44663279)

Well that is mainly because they never really invented something new, except Earth.

I like how you kpt that quote. Google bought Earth IIRC. The main "innovation" was that it didn't cost $20k like competing GIS systems.

believe the total was 106 over the period of time we had all been there.

Well done, 106 worthless things were done while you were there.

Seriously, the state of the patent system is so bad that 106 patents is utterly meaningless. I've actually examined one or two patents in detail on slashdot. Perhaps your former employer could help you to veryify this if you care to. In response to posts claiming that your former wasn't patenting obvious, old stuff.

I actually did a point by point rebuttal of the entire. Conclusion: not a single thing that was new in the entire patent.

So as far as I and many others caer 106 patents is just 106 more things to waste people's time and abuse the legal system. Congratulations.

Let us know when you *actully* invent somethig.

Re: Against or because of? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44663333)

It sounds like you have far too much spare time.

Re: Against or because of? (1)

Lumpy (12016) | about a year ago | (#44663971)

Google Earth is NOT a GIS system. I can not map watershed flow information on Google Earth.

Re: Against or because of? (1)

serviscope_minor (664417) | about a year ago | (#44664297)

Google Earth is NOT a GIS system. I can not map watershed flow information on Google Earth.

OK, not a very *good* GIS system. It's OK for some of the stuff, like displaying stuff overlaid.

Anyway, that's a good point: a lot of people count seeing a feature poor version of something already popular in a niche industry that they've never personally heard of as innovation.

Re: Against or because of? (2)

zrelativity (963547) | about a year ago | (#44663367)

Here is the list of 300 companies with numbers of patents granted in 2012. Google is now #23, up nearly 60% from last year with 1151 patents granted in 2012.

http://www.ipo.org/wp-content/uploads/2013/06/Top-300_6.23.13.pdf[ipo.org]

Re: Against or because of? (1)

Shavano (2541114) | about a year ago | (#44663461)

Filing patents does not equal inventing.

Re: Against or because of? (1)

Stan92057 (737634) | about a year ago | (#44663915)

Patent Numbers?

Re: Against or because of? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44663001)

They were beaten to most of the features of Google Earth by Microsoft Terraserver, which launched first.

Re: Against or because of? (2)

AliasMarlowe (1042386) | about a year ago | (#44663101)

They were beaten to most of the features of Google Earth by Microsoft Terraserver, which launched first.

Which was beaten to most of its features by NASA Worldwind, which launched first.
BTW, the original Terraserver (i.e. non-Microsoft) came first, but lacked most of the features we know in such services today, such as stitching images together into a globe.
[insert NeverEndingStory reference here]

Re:Against or because of? (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44662993)

Google generally doesn't use it patents for attacking other companies, only for defence.

"If you tell a lie big enough and keep repeating it, people will eventually come to believe it."

Re:Against or because of? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44663017)

Then tell us more about it... I'm curious now to see when Google used patents offensively as MS / Oracle / Apple...

And don't start with Motorola media department case, because that case was started way before Google brought it.

"It is easy to tell a lie when nobody is looking at you. When you have to do it in front of an audience, it gets complicated." - by... me.

Re:Against or because of? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44663151)

Then I guess they don't mind if I clone their precious search thingy.

Re:Against or because of? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44664701)

There was some search startup made by ex-googlers that did not take off for some reason and went out of business. So far haven't heard of them being sued over it. On the other hand, as Google transforms into this gigantic faceless corporation with 10000's of new decision makers it will slowly abandon all these childish slogans and start to use the patents just like everybody else -- to stave off competition. There are already tell-tale signs of Google policies shifting -- like recent prohibition of personal web servers.

- Kakis

Re:Against or because of? (1)

Shavano (2541114) | about a year ago | (#44663457)

It's also possible that they actually intend to use the technology they're buying and think buying the patent will be more efficient for them than licensing.

Re:Against or because of? (2)

houghi (78078) | about a year ago | (#44663587)

Sure and management will never change.

Furthermore, the problem with this type of defense is that even if they are infringing on your patent, you can not do anything about it, because they will bury you.
This makes them untouchable.

If it is only so others can't sue them, why don't they release it to the public? That way you they can still use it at defense.

Re:Against or because of? (1)

Shompol (1690084) | about a year ago | (#44664721)

why don't they release it to the public? That way you they can still use it at defense.

In what way? They cannot use something that belongs to public to counter-sue anybody.

Re:Against or because of? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44663675)

Glass already had predecessors to it. There were dozens of glass-like products done in the 90's. Bigger understandably size doesn't mean its not the same crap. I'd laugh at Google trying to prevent anyone from coming up with a competitive pair of glasses

Re:Against or because of? (1)

Lumpy (12016) | about a year ago | (#44663953)

Glass is a HMD or Head Mounted Display.
Heads up displays are completely different in every single way. It's like comparing an Fresh Orange to a Bugatti Veyron.

Soylent Foxconn (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44663055)

If they replaced the 'suicide nets' with fake laundry shoots....

neverm1nd

Foxconn invents stuff? (0)

RevWaldo (1186281) | about a year ago | (#44663079)

If they're a contract manufacturer, how'd they get the patents in the first place? Do they actually do their own R&D?

.

Re:Foxconn invents stuff? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44663691)

That's got to be the most ignorant comment I've ever seen here.

OK (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44663751)

...sounds like they bought a buncha patents that from the high level description makes me say: "WTH were they even granted patents for obvious stuff?"

Layers? (1)

Stan92057 (737634) | about a year ago | (#44664195)

"superimposed on a real-world view."

Isn't that nothing more then adding a layer which is already patented? ya i know its not just as simple as that to get it done but a layer is a layer wither its dont for cartooning/animating to super imposing. Seems to me this might have prior art somewhere.

Google didn't invent glass... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44665533)

There is at least 10 years of similar head mounted tech functioning prototypes, some of which are actually a one man job and better than glass at addressing some issues. (we had an article on ./ about it some time ago)

Re:Google didn't invent glass... (1)

tibman (623933) | about a year ago | (#44667019)

Glass is a product. Google did engineer that product. Nobody is saying that glass is the first or best HMD.

Can't do business in US anymore. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44667893)

Has anyone pulled a patent on "carved wood for the purpose of sitting above the ground" yet?

Oh, I know, "a cylindrical peace of manufactured plastic". I'ma take every fast food outlet to the cleaners!

If only we had this type of patent system back when the auto industry was forming... Ford would be the only company that could provide a "wheel used for steering an automobiles direction" and maybe even "powering spinning wheel with burnt fossil fuels", the last one which they could also use to sue power providers or "a fossil fuel engine" which could be used to sue even AC powered motor manufacturers, through the Law of Conservation of Energy (converting coal power to electricity is still indirectly "exploiting" the fossil fuels patent).

Check for New Comments
Slashdot Login

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?
or Connect with...

Don't worry, we never post anything without your permission.

Submission Text Formatting Tips

We support a small subset of HTML, namely these tags:

  • b
  • i
  • p
  • br
  • a
  • ol
  • ul
  • li
  • dl
  • dt
  • dd
  • em
  • strong
  • tt
  • blockquote
  • div
  • quote
  • ecode

"ecode" can be used for code snippets, for example:

<ecode>    while(1) { do_something(); } </ecode>