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Oracle's Android Claims Cut By 98% 130

tomhudson writes "Groklaw is reporting that Oracle was ordered to reduce its claims against Google from 132 to 3. In a further ruling, the judge has ordered that 129 of those claims will be permanently barred against all past and current products. Additionally, the judge has asked both sides if, in their opinion, after they have reduced the number of claims, a trial is still worth holding, or if the case is now moot."
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Oracle's Android Claims Cut By 98%

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday May 06, 2011 @05:33AM (#36045440)

    Which bit don't you get? Oracle made 132 claims of infringement by Google on their patents. Those 132 claims involved only 7 patents (ie. many of the claims involved the same patents). Google responded by claiming the patents were invalid, citing hundreds of examples of prior art that meant the patents should not have been granted in the first place.

  • by ArsenneLupin ( 766289 ) on Friday May 06, 2011 @05:44AM (#36045486)
    Each patent contains multiple claims (usually nested into each other like Russian dolls, from the broadest claims to the most specific). The broader variants have the advantage of striking more implementations (less easy to work around), but have the disadvantage of being more vulnerable to prior art (if they happen to cover a pre-existing implementation by somebody else). By listing multiple claims (from broadest to most specific), the patent holder gets advantages of both narrow and broad claims, without having to do any prior-art research himself.

    So, "132 claims from seven patents" just means that Oracle claimed that Android was infringing on an average of 18 claims per patents (...which were very probably very similar to each other, differing only in scope...)

    Google tried to have these claims struck by pointing out prior art (implementations that would infringe, but were actually done prior to the patent, thus showing that the patent (... or rather: the relevant claims...) was not really novel...), and found hundreds of them.

    Then the judge told both parties to "keep it simple" by only sticking to the most relevant claims and defences.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday May 06, 2011 @05:57AM (#36045532)
    That russian doll is called 'matrushka []'.
  • by itsdapead ( 734413 ) on Friday May 06, 2011 @06:05AM (#36045572)

    Telling Google they have to pick and choose what they can use to defend themselves isn't kosher.

    Google don't need to defend themselves against the claims that have been thrown out.

    This isn't about deciding who is right, at this stage, its about cutting the case down to something that can be heard, considered properly and decided before the heat death of the universe.

    Also, its not the Judge's job to get as many patent claims overturned as possible, much as we'd like that to happen.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday May 06, 2011 @07:00AM (#36045730)

    It is not that 3 stuck: the judge has not decided which 3 claims stick. He has ordered both sides to reduce their claims and defences from the current huge number in three stages, to be down to 3/8 by the time the case comes to trial. The idea is that Oracle should pick their three strongest claims, and Google their eight best defences against those claims. This means that there is at least a chance that the jury will be able ti understand the case without their brains exploding,

  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday May 06, 2011 @07:53AM (#36045960)

    "Stop squabbling, children, I WILL DECIDE what is important, and what is not. Sit down, shut up, and OBEY ME!!!"

    Close, but no cigar. You could have RTFA, but let me save you the trouble:

    "The first reduction will follow claim construction. Within SEVEN DAYS after the finalized claim construction order issues, Oracle shall narrow its patent infringement case to 40 asserted claims. Within SEVEN DAYS after that, Google shall narrow its invalidity case to 120 prior art references."

    "The second reduction will follow expert disclosures. By AUGUST 24 (five days after reply expert reports must be served), Oracle shall narrow its patent infringement case to 20 asserted claims. By AUGUST 29 (five days later), Google shall narrow its invalidity case to 60 prior art references."

    "The third reduction will follow summary judgment. Between the date on which the summary-judgment order issues and the final pretrial conference, Oracle shall select no more than three asserted claims and Google shall select no more than eight prior art references for trial. All others will be forsaken."

    I like this addition though: "Counsel did not specify their understanding of a “triable number” of claims and prior art references, so the Court selected these figures based on its own views and experience". In other words: you failed to tell me what you think is reasonable, so I will decide what is reasonable. And three claims seems reasonable to me. Now stop squabbling and come back when you have decided what you want.

    This judge is looking for a speedy resolution. He probably knows the SCO case, and seems hell-bent on not allowing this case to be drawn out for years.

  • by ArsenneLupin ( 766289 ) on Friday May 06, 2011 @08:10AM (#36046074)

    Google don't need to defend themselves against the claims that have been thrown out.

    The judge not only threw out claims, but also some of Google's prior art examples.

  • by urulokion ( 597607 ) on Friday May 06, 2011 @11:06AM (#36047800)

    Groklaw isn't going away. All that's happening is that PJ (Pamela Jones) is retiring aka stepping away from Groklaw to pursuit other things. Groklaw has consumed her life for the past 9 years.

    I don't know what Groklaw will morph into w/o PJ at the helm. But PJ (aka the team of IBM laywers ;) ) says the site will be in good hands after she steps down.

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