Want to read Slashdot from your mobile device? Point it at m.slashdot.org and keep reading!


Forgot your password?
Microsoft Patents

Microsoft Applies For "Digital Manners" Patent 289

SirLurksAlot writes "Ars Technica reports that Microsoft has recently applied for a patent for a technology which would attempt to enforce manners in the use of cell phones, digital cameras, DVRs and other digital devices. According to the article, the technology could be used to bring common social conventions such as 'No flash photography' and 'No talking out loud' to these devices by disabling features or disabling the device entirely. The article also points out that the technology could be implemented in situations involving sensitive equipment, such as in airplanes or hospitals. The patent application itself is also an interesting read, as it describes a number of possible uses for the technology, including 'in particular zones to limit the speed and/or acceleration of vehicles, to require the use of lights, to verify an indication of insurance coverage and/or current registration, or the like.' While this technology could certainly be of interest to any number of organizations one has to wonder how the individuals who own devices which obey so-called 'Digital Manners Policies' would feel about it."
This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

Microsoft Applies For "Digital Manners" Patent

Comments Filter:
  • Innovation (Score:4, Funny)

    by Frosty Piss ( 770223 ) on Thursday June 12, 2008 @03:56AM (#23760885)
    So this is "innovation", eh?
  • Good job (Score:5, Funny)

    by Hal_Porter ( 817932 ) on Thursday June 12, 2008 @04:01AM (#23760929)
    this technology is not already in Windows say I can still say what a bunch of

    [Bad manners deleted]
  • by mrbluze ( 1034940 ) on Thursday June 12, 2008 @04:03AM (#23760945) Journal

    So this is "innovation", eh?
    It will result in The Most Broken Windows Yet(TM) once people get frustrated enough with devices that refuse to work.
  • manners (Score:5, Funny)

    by alxtoth ( 914920 ) on Thursday June 12, 2008 @04:03AM (#23760951) Homepage
    ..No Windows at MacWorld/Linux conferences
  • by Pofy ( 471469 ) on Thursday June 12, 2008 @04:05AM (#23760961)
    In other news, bank robbers cheers at their new tool to bring along that will disable all cameras when performing robberies.

    Cell phone users are also wondering why their phones tend to stop working every other minute. Investigation shows one out of five person in the public carrying their own "no phone calls here" devices arround.

    Finally paparazzis express no worries. They will just keep a slightly longer distance to their targets and thus avoid any "no photos here" devices carried arround by most celebrities.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday June 12, 2008 @04:11AM (#23761007)
    1. "Digital Manners" Patent
    2. Pentagon Gets Kill Switch For Planes
    3. Profit!
  • by zeromorph ( 1009305 ) on Thursday June 12, 2008 @04:25AM (#23761095)

    No, no, no, it's a great idea, now they can say: "It's not working? ... Yeah, that's a feature not a bug, we've got a patent for that one." Sounds like a proper business strategy for me.

  • by cammoblammo ( 774120 ) <cammoblammo.gmail@com> on Thursday June 12, 2008 @04:48AM (#23761243)

    Yes, you may think that you're way above average as a driver, and you'd _never_ possibly cause an accident. Guess what? So does everyone else. Over 90% of the people think that their driving is above average. It's mathematically impossible.

    Not if the other ten percent are really, really bad.

  • by cammoblammo ( 774120 ) <cammoblammo.gmail@com> on Thursday June 12, 2008 @04:49AM (#23761255)

    That's your typical patent in the IT world these days. Amazon one-click: "hey everyone, let's store credit card numbers and make it effortless for people to buy things.. we won't even make them enter a password!" An idea so brain dead that they even stopped doing it.

    To be fair, they stopped everyone else doing it too.

  • by Undead NDR ( 1252916 ) on Thursday June 12, 2008 @04:50AM (#23761265) Homepage Journal

    So this is "innovation", eh?

    dgtlmnrs.exe: WARNING: No Microsoft bashing.

  • by Imsdal ( 930595 ) on Thursday June 12, 2008 @05:02AM (#23761347)
    And they really [youtube.com] are.
  • by joefish_only_one ( 1138079 ) on Thursday June 12, 2008 @05:03AM (#23761353)
    "You have been fined one credit for the violation of Digital Manners Act."
  • Re:Good job (Score:5, Funny)

    by jkrise ( 535370 ) on Thursday June 12, 2008 @05:06AM (#23761383) Journal
    Will this technology prevent someone from throwing chairs, though? I think that is considered good manners by Microsoft!
  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday June 12, 2008 @05:07AM (#23761387)
    Wow! Once we have computers in our body that control and supplement our being, then we can implant this technology in every citizen.

    That allows us to enforce the wishes of the religious right and disable the mothers that attempt abortion. But that would be counter productive, wouldn't it?

    We could also zap those pesky homosexuals and zap the libido of everybody that makes love to anybody he is not married to. Amend the constitution!

    And off course we can disable everybody's arm that does attempt to vote the wrong party at the ballot box. Then we can finally use clean voting machines that can't be tampered with.
  • Talk talk (Score:5, Funny)

    by Wowsers ( 1151731 ) on Thursday June 12, 2008 @05:17AM (#23761467) Journal
    You will be nice to your copy of Microsoft Vista at all times. If it registers dissatisfaction about Vista through the use of the webcam or via voice control, Vista will shut down until you start giving it nice thoughts like "Bill Gates is great really", or "I didn't really mean to attack my machine with a chair".
  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday June 12, 2008 @05:44AM (#23761635)
    HI! YES, IT IS ME!

    Sorry, I do not want to be rude, but being polite would be a patent violation here. Even if I am not a device, obeying the signal would be a patent violation, yes? (IF it gets granted, off course)
  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday June 12, 2008 @06:03AM (#23761749)

    The summer of code project wasn't accepted, thus this system isn't currently implemented. Never the less, [...]
    More over, the prospective summer of code candidates got to get her to discuss the topic. Further more, they strongly agreed that the project should take place. Google disagreed. There fore, it was abandoned.
  • by rcamera ( 517595 ) on Thursday June 12, 2008 @07:05AM (#23762211) Homepage
    you don't own a ferrari [wikipedia.org]. if you did, you wouldn't have mangled the spelling so badly. and if you do, indeed, own a ferrary, then it's most likely a ferrari rip-off (like those "rolox" watches street vendors are constantly trying to sell me)
  • by Kvasio ( 127200 ) on Thursday June 12, 2008 @07:21AM (#23762351)
    you've got ferrari, so you may be chosen to become a tester for Pioneer Implementation of Manner Policy, or PIMP for short :-)
  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday June 12, 2008 @09:01AM (#23763299)

    If MS tries for the breathing air patent, I give up.
    You may very well have to...
  • Shamelessly copied from the standard this-anti-spam-solution-sucks template.

    This patent advocates a

    (x) technical ( ) legislative ( ) market-based ( ) vigilante

    approach to enforcing manners. Your idea will not work. Here is why it won't work. (One or more of the following may apply to your particular idea.)

    ( ) No one will be able to find the guy or collect the money
    ( ) It is defenseless against brute force attacks
    ( ) It will improve manners for two weeks and then we'll be stuck with it
    (x) Users of electronic devices will not put up with it
    ( ) Microsoft will not put up with it
    (x) Apple will not put up with it
    ( ) The police will not put up with it
    (x) Requires too much cooperation from asshats
    (x) Requires immediate total cooperation from everybody at once
    (x) Many electronics users cannot afford to lose business or alienate potential employers
    (x) Anyone could anonymously destroy anyone else's career or business

    Specifically, your plan fails to account for

    (x) Laws expressly prohibiting it
    (x) Lack of centrally controlling authority
    (x) Asshats
    (x) Jurisdictional problems
    ( ) Unpopularity of weird new taxes
    (x) Unpopularity of weird new devices
    ( ) Public reluctance to accept weird new forms of money
    (x) Susceptibility of protocols other to attack
    (x) Willingness of users to install OS patches to their existing devices
    ( ) Joe jobs and/or identity theft
    ( ) Technically illiterate politicians

    and the following philosophical objections may also apply:

    (x) Ideas similar to yours are easy to come up with, yet none have ever been shown practical
    ( ) We should be able to talk about Viagra in the movie theater without being censored
    (x) Countermeasures should not involve sabotage of privately owned devices
    (x) Countermeasures must work if phased in gradually
    ( ) Why should we have to trust you and your servers?
    ( ) Incompatibility with open source or open source licenses
    ( ) Feel-good measures do nothing to solve the problem
    (x) I don't want the government controlling my iPhone
    ( ) Killing them that way is not slow and painful enough

    Furthermore, this is what I think about you:

    ( ) Sorry dude, but I don't think it would work.
    (x) This is a stupid idea, and you're a stupid person for suggesting it.
    ( ) Nice try, assh0le! I'm going to find out where you live and burn your house down!
  • by Crazyswedishguy ( 1020008 ) on Thursday June 12, 2008 @09:27AM (#23763707)
    Will it prevent flying chairs?
  • by overkill1024 ( 1016283 ) on Thursday June 12, 2008 @11:39AM (#23765893)

    Maybe we'll even let the heart surgeon in a movie theatre get his emergency phone call, if we're sure that (A) the phone is capped to vibrating inside the room, instead of playing a retarded tune at 80 dB, and (B) he'll have to walk out to actually talk.
    I'm a dumb, numb, amputee heart surgeon, you insensitive clod!
  • by ichbineinneuben ( 1065378 ) on Thursday June 12, 2008 @12:00PM (#23766353)
    I know that when I think of courtesy, politeness, and good manners the name Microsoft springs immediately to mind.
  • by flyneye ( 84093 ) on Thursday June 12, 2008 @12:50PM (#23767259) Homepage
    I'm filing for a patent not for an OS but one for installing Microsoft.Not the installer mind you,but for the act of installing Microsoft.
    Anyone who actually installs Windows as an act whether scripted or not will have to pay me a fee for doing so.
            This also applies to anyone working for Microsoft and right down to Bill Gates.
            This in no way applies to any other OS besides Windows.

  • OCP (Score:1, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday June 12, 2008 @01:29PM (#23767927)
    Does this mean we can't call Bill Gates a [xxx]? What the [xxxx]? And Robocop can't arrest an Officer of OCP?

    Or gosh I saw Senator [xxxxx] give [xxxxx] to [xxxx]!!! Arrest his [xxx]! I have pictures.... oh [xxxx] wait, never mind.

Old mail has arrived.