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Eolas To Sue Apple, Google, and 21 Others 252

vinodis and several other readers sent along the news that Eolas is suing 23 companies including Apple and Google for patent infringement. The company won $585M from Microsoft in a drawn-out, 9-year battle that the companies settled in 2007; in the course of it the USPTO upheld the "906" patent several times. Now, Eolas is also in possession of a newly-issued patent that they claim covers the use of any browser plugin with AJAX. Let's see how far this lawsuit gets before the Supreme Court plays its wildcard in the Bilski case, which we have been discussing for a while now.
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Eolas To Sue Apple, Google, and 21 Others

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  • by rsborg ( 111459 ) on Tuesday October 06, 2009 @06:15PM (#29663763) Homepage

    Can someone link this this "985 patent"? I can't find it linked in any article on this subject. Why do major media never link to anything?

    Uh, looks like they did link it at the end, you just have to RTFA:

    US Patent 7,599,985 [] for a "Distributed hypermedia method and system for automatically invoking external application providing interaction and display of embedded objects within a hypermedia document"

  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday October 06, 2009 @06:17PM (#29663779)

    The i4i case was MS being naughty. They contracted a job to them, but used the product in a way not allowed. They weren't patent trolls.

  • Ug (Score:3, Informative)

    by copponex ( 13876 ) on Tuesday October 06, 2009 @06:39PM (#29663987) Homepage

    No, Eolas is a shit head. He just happens to live in a society where shit heads who are wealthy through immoral work are tolerated. I can and do absolutely condemn companies who violate the spirit but not the letter of laws for material gain. Patent laws do need to be changed, but so does our attitude towards companies that operate entirely in the grey area of legal loopholes.

    Your moral reasoning in this situation is no different from the assholes who market overpriced pens to senior citizens, or con poor people out of their land with loans they don't understand. Just because something is technically legal doesn't make it right. And defending asswipes like Eolas and Skilling makes you part of the problem, not of the solution.

    And you'll quickly see a problem developing for patent law. There need to be new laws established, because the speed at which technology has developed has made nearly all legal thought on the subject obsolete.

    Certainly an inventor ought to be allowed a right to the benefit of his invention for some certain time. It is equally certain it ought not to be perpetual; for to embarrass society with monopolies for every utensil existing, and in all the details of life, would be more injurious to them than had the supposed inventors never existed; because the natural understanding of its members would have suggested the same things or others as good. How long the term should be is the difficult question. Our legislators have copied the English estimate of the term, perhaps without sufficiently considering how much longer, in a country so much more sparsely settled, it takes for an invention to become known and used to an extent profitable to the inventor. Nobody wishes more than I do that ingenuity should receive a liberal encouragement." --Thomas Jefferson

  • by MrMista_B ( 891430 ) on Tuesday October 06, 2009 @06:41PM (#29664021)

    Yeah, 'cept with the i4i case, they actually /did/ have a patient, and Microsoft actually /did/ break the law and steal their code after working with them. They weren't actually patent trolls, though Microsoft did a great job painting them that way.

  • Re:Fuck Eolas (Score:2, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday October 06, 2009 @11:43PM (#29666133)
    There is a really long .mp3 file around of Bill talking to a college class. Somewhere in the middle of that he explains how *he* designed the memory model of the PC and that the 640k limit he thought would be enough for the foreseeable future.

Machines that have broken down will work perfectly when the repairman arrives.