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WinMX World :: Forum  |  Discussion  |  WinMx World News  |  Microsoft and Linux trade patent words in Europe

Author Topic: Microsoft and Linux trade patent words in Europe  (Read 725 times)

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Offline DaBees-Knees

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Microsoft and Linux trade patent words in Europe
« on: May 04, 2009, 10:27:14 am »

Microsoft has teamed with General Electric to petition European regulators on a fundamental principle that will continue to drive a wedge between the company and open source supporters. The duo filed an amicus brief arguing that regulators should believe in the existence of patents in software and that these patents should then be enforceable in European Union courts.

The filing is important because Microsoft is arguing for a continuation of status quo: the ability to turn ambiguities in a part of existing EU law over software patents to the favor of patent holders by bringing and winning cases. Patent holders could then argue for future enforcement based on that case law. It's a type of creeping enforcement that open-source advocates oppose and have argued will turn Europe into the kind of costly patent battle-ground that characterizes the US.

It opens the way for expensive and opportunistic legal actions and ambulance-chasing lawsuits of claimed patent violations, which typically favor those with the lawyers and money to win. Often, the mere threat of action is sufficient to make companies settle with litigants.

Worse, patent holders can argue they should be allowed to charge others for invoking a method in a piece of software or on a system because there are similarities with their patent. Patent holders are, therefore, locking down the market stifling innovation.

Microsoft's US legal action, quickly settled, against GPS device manufacturer TomTom illustrates this: Microsoft said TomTom had violated eight of its patents, three of them for FAT - a widely implemented technology but something Microsoft has patents on. Eventually, TomTom agreed to pay royalties to Microsoft to license the three FAT patents.

This produced two responses. Linux advocates called on engineers to rip out FAT from systems. They also posted Microsoft's FAT patents to a web site for peer review by the legal community and patent experts, to help find prior art that could potentially invalidate Microsoft's claim.

Greed seems to have reared it's ugly head again at Microsoft.  :whistle:

Offline Forested665

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Re: Microsoft and Linux trade patent words in Europe
« Reply #1 on: May 04, 2009, 06:31:29 pm »
They never mentioned word of the other 5 patents.
And I can see why they are doing this, if the patents arent upheld larger corporations could do similar to the wine project and backwards code the entire operating system and sell a clone at prices that would set Microsoft out of buisness.

Oddly enough before the TomTom suite microsoft was fighting for the very patents they won on.
Seems in the end the US gave in.

But how biased is microsoft?
FAT can be read by the following of wich i have not seen lawsuites filed.
DVD players
Digital cameras
Apple Products
Palm devices
Smart phones

It seems someone just pissed off MS at TomTom.
BSD -  The Daemons Are No Longer Just Inside My Head.

Offline White Stripes

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Re: Microsoft and Linux trade patent words in Europe
« Reply #2 on: May 07, 2009, 08:40:26 pm »
* Silver Stripes ponders the prior art thing

what filesystem did CP/M use?

for those who dont know their history.... CP/M was -very- 'dos' like (tho much more powerfull considering the timeframe) a company called seattle computer* (*correct me here on the exact name) created 'QDOS' it stood for "quick and dirty operating system" and was a loosely based clone of CP/M .... gates bought QDOS turned it into MSDOS (version 1 if i remember) and licenced it (non exclusively) to IBM for their new "PC" .....

doesnt take too much of a leap of logic from there...

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