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Smartphones Patented... Just About Everyone Sued 1 Minute After Patent Issued

from the wasting-no-time dept

This past Tuesday, the US Patent and Trademark Office issued a patent on "a mobile entertainment and communication device." Reading the patent, you realize it describes the quite common smartphone. It's a patent for a mobile phone with removable storage, an internet connection, a camera and the ability to download audio or video files. The patent holding firm who has the rights to this patent wasted no time at all. At 12:01am Tuesday morning, it filed three separate lawsuits against just about everyone you can think of, including Apple, Nokia, RIM, Sprint, AT&T, HP, Motorola, Helio, HTC, Sony Ericsson, UTStarcomm, Samsung and a bunch of others. Amusingly, the company actually first filed the lawsuits on Monday, but realized it was jumping the gun and pulled them, only to refile just past the stroke of midnight.

As the link above explains, the patent itself is based on a bunch of continuation filings, which are commonly used by patent holders who want broad patents to cover the latest technologies well after they've already come about in the market. It would seem like the concept itself, merely combining a bunch of things that people were already talking about, should never have been granted based on the Supreme Court's recent KSR ruling that merely combining existing concepts doesn't deserve a patent. Also, as noted in the comments to the link above, it would appear that there's a fair amount of prior art. In fact, Apple even sent over some prior art concerning the patent just before it was originally supposed to be issued last summer -- but somehow patent holder's lawyers talked their way around it. In the meantime, it looks like we've got yet another case of an overly broad and obvious patent being used against a huge number of firms. I'm sure that's exactly what Thomas Jefferson expected when he created our patent system.


Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  1.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 25th, 2008 @ 9:39am

    Maybe the problem isn't with the patent system but instead is with our legal system?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  2.  
    identicon
    angry dude, Jan 25th, 2008 @ 10:04am

    Re:

    The problem is with morons and idiots everywhere, from this shitty internet blog to the government institutions

    The Founding Fathers are rolling over in their graves !

    This country goes straight to hell...

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  3.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 25th, 2008 @ 10:10am

    Re:

    How about both.
    I knew it, I'm surrounded by assholes. Keep firing assholes!

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  4.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 25th, 2008 @ 10:17am

    Ima patent the printed paper in uniform size with incremented numbers on it...

     

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  5.  
    icon
    Sceptical Cynic (profile), Jan 25th, 2008 @ 10:20am

    If you remove the massive amount of money they mak

    from these overly broad patents for devices they never created then Patent Trolls will disappear...

    If a company would for once just fight this hard and not settle...

    The simple fact is if they can get the patent and then makes tons of money for not doing anything then they are going to keep on doing it.

     

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  6.  
    identicon
    Rolleyes, Jan 25th, 2008 @ 10:22am

    Angry dude, the most loyal Techdirt follower

    What does this "shitty blog" have anything to do with the patent nonsense it just reported and the downfall of the USA you are hailing?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  7.  
    identicon
    Me, Jan 25th, 2008 @ 10:22am

    My friend work at burger king and he say not to order the mayo.

     

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  8.  
    identicon
    TimeForReform, Jan 25th, 2008 @ 10:34am

    Question

    About 16 years ago way before Tivo an cable companies had the technology to fast forward commercials an record shows while you were at work, my good friend an I said, "Wouldn't it be cool to be able to fast forward, rewind, record your shows ahead of time", mainly because we hated commercials. Can we sue the cable companies for using our idea even though it was like 12 years before the technology came out? We were only 14 years old at the time. How is this any different from allowing leeches a.k.a. lawyers to capitalize on existing technologies "after" they had already came out??

     

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  9.  
    identicon
    boost, Jan 25th, 2008 @ 10:38am

    I certainly hope this gets smacked down

    I really would like a 'smart phone' one of these days, so I really hope that this company looses it's ass with these lawsuits.

     

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  10.  
    identicon
    mikecancook, Jan 25th, 2008 @ 10:40am

    My new patent

    I would just like to forewarn everyone that I am going to be filing a new patent that will boldly drive innovation and make me stinking rich while simultaneously crushing the patent industry.

    I will be patenting 'patents'. Prepare to have your a$$es sued!

    I will also be filing a patent on the question mark so I can sue anyone that questions me.

    PS And maybe that inflection at the end of your voice when you ask questions so I have text and speech covered.

     

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  11.  
    identicon
    another mike, Jan 25th, 2008 @ 10:43am

    prior art or another target

    "a mobile entertainment and communication device...with removable storage, an internet connection, a camera and the ability to download audio or video files."
    I'd submit my Samsung a920 cell phone as prior art but that might get Samsung added to the list of targets.
    I think we should require that anyone who files a patent infringment lawsuit actually has a product based on the patent. I mean, patents are supposed to grant a temporary monopoly so the inventor can profit from their idea, right? But these trolls don't actually have a product so how can they say there's a market failure from their patent being infringed?

     

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  12.  
    identicon
    mikecancook, Jan 25th, 2008 @ 10:44am

    Re: My new patent

    I would also like to patent an "anti-grave roll over patent" to keep our forefathers from rolling over in their graves. If they can't roll, then they'll be supportive! Or I'll sue them!

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  13.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 25th, 2008 @ 10:44am

    Re: My new patent

    Unfortunately this is not your original idea. So I guess you are an idiot. Good luck in life, because I have a feeling you will need it.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  14.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 25th, 2008 @ 10:49am

    So wait... Apple submitted prior art, this company managed to convince the patent office that it didn't apply or wasn't similar enough or whatever, but somehow now they're suing (among others) Apple?

    I'm confuzzled...

     

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  15.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 25th, 2008 @ 11:17am

    Re: My new patent

    Actually you should patent the business model of trolling and accumulating patents for the purpose of suing for infringement. Then you could sue the patent hoarding firms for infringement.

     

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  16.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 25th, 2008 @ 11:20am

    They could stop a lot of this non-sense by simply eliminating or at least severely limiting continuation patents.

     

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  17.  
    identicon
    USPTO, Jan 25th, 2008 @ 11:25am

    Your patent has been rejected as it is : Obvious

    I am posting this fragment below from:
    http://trolltracker.blogspot.com/2008/01/minerva-v-rim-another-case-opened-too.html
    as techsphinx's idea is excellent.

    ======= Start ==============
    January 22, 2008 9:58 PM
    techsphinx said...

    Why is it that almost any legitimate technology practitioner, can, within a matter of mere minutes, clearly identify whether a patent is truly, innovative, unique, and non-obvious? Furthermore, I would wager that a hypothetical tech-practioner peer panel would quickly come to a high degree of consensus on which patents were non-obvious and truly innovative, and which were obvious and/or frivolous. As a non-lawyer, who has been a successful defendant in an EDTX patent suit, it is precisely this enormous chasm between PTO behavior/patent law and outright common sense that is dumbfounding to most tech practioners.

    Not that other areas of patent reform will not be very valuable, but ultimately, the bar for obtaining a patent is so absurdly low that it practically defies imagination
    ========= ends ===========

    I cannot help but think that Techsphinx has it right. These silly patents are
    damaging to the US in so many ways. They:-
    - draw away technical talent that could be better used innovating.
    - consume a lot of time and money of firms that are innocent defendants.

    I think that 'techsphinx' is right. A technical group that would stop
    obvious patent being granted would had great value to the patent process.
    Like the idea in "Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance" on good essays:

    "You know it when you see it".

    Such a reform is good for every one. Consumers, companies and inventors.

    The US is in danger of losing its economic lead - patents such as these only hasten the process.

    (Perhaps one reform could be that the winner pays all the bills, this might deter some of these claims. More technically savvy judges would also be helpful!)

     

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  18.  
    identicon
    AudibleNod, Jan 25th, 2008 @ 11:33am

    :-(

    This stunt happened in Australia in May of '01. Where a lawyer patented the wheel as a "circular transportation facilitation device". This came under an new, innovation patent system they had introduced to help small businesses. Closer to home, Despair, Inc. received a trademark for the frowny emoticon, :-( . Their website sells them at the cost of $0.00 per or roughly €0.00.

    I believe that we need to take Charles H. Duell's advice and close the Patent Office. At least for a short while.

     

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  19.  
    identicon
    Joe Smith, Jan 25th, 2008 @ 11:40am

    angry dude - defending the indefensible

    Always interesting to see angry dude with his knee jerk defense of every patent claim. When is he going to realize that by defending really stupid patents he (and others like him) discredit the whole system they seek to defend?

    Any general knows there is some ground you cannot defend and that spreading your forces out thinly to try weakens the whole army.

    Maybe angry dude is so aggressive about defending trivial patents because his only hope of profiting from his work is if trivial ideas can be patented? :-p

     

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  20.  
    identicon
    In the know, Jan 25th, 2008 @ 11:45am

    Re: My new patent

    Wow you are so brilliant. Maybe you should read about the difference in copyrights, trademarks, and patents before you make a fool out of yourself. Oops too late! With stupid American citizens, how do we expect to fix the government?

     

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  21.  
    identicon
    Alimas, Jan 25th, 2008 @ 11:45am

    Ooo! ooo!

    I'm going to to patent specialized biological cells that can hold oxygen and transport it through a tubed medium.

    I believe this means all you bastards owe me some money.

    What firm got this patent?

     

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  22.  
    identicon
    Pat, Jan 25th, 2008 @ 11:49am

    An obvious attempt at extorting money from said businesses with out of court settlements. Most of the companies will pay some amount to these sleezebags to avoid the higher cost of a court fight an the costs associated with them.
    Throw this out of the court system and charge them with attempted extortion.

     

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  23.  
    identicon
    In the know, Jan 25th, 2008 @ 11:52am

    Re:

    Hey the Patent Office did manage to put through rules to limit the number of continuations. BUT, a Virginia court put a preliminary injunction on it. And now it is being tried as being unconstitutional. So if you want to blame anyone, blame the courts and the lawyers. They screwed up the system and refuse to be held accountable.

     

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  24.  
    identicon
    angry dude, Jan 25th, 2008 @ 11:53am

    Re: angry dude - defending the indefensible

    Hey, litle lemonade Joe, is that real you, looser pal ?

    I'm not defending junk patents here, I'm just shitting here on techdirt..
    That's all
    You gotta shit somewhere dude

     

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  25.  
    identicon
    Ted Nancy, Jan 25th, 2008 @ 11:55am

    re: angry dude - defending the indefensible

    Maybe TD could host a "Special" report, think of it as a one-off, where Angry Dude could eloquently share his knowledge on patents, and in turn, the group can eloquently share thoughts with Angry Dude.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  26.  
    identicon
    STJ, Jan 25th, 2008 @ 11:59am

    So when I file my patient for putting ground beef between slices of bread, I get to sue mcdonalds, burger king.. etc?? Then I can lease to them usage of it?

    I'm in the money!!

     

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  27.  
    identicon
    Ferin, Jan 25th, 2008 @ 12:03pm

    Lovely

    Can I just patent a business method that consists of filing overly broad patents on already existing and successful technology, then suing everybody who touched the technology into oblivion?

    I'm really getting tire do fwatching this shit go on, no wonder we're falling so far behind in technology.

     

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  28.  
    identicon
    In the know, Jan 25th, 2008 @ 12:06pm

    Anyone actually look this thing up?

    Granted the claims are overly broad, but the original filing date is from 1997. Everyone is looking at their phone right now and saying "how could someone get a patent on this?" or "I could send a picture of my phone to them as prior art." Well go find your phone and its capabilities from 1997 and show me how it accessed the Internet and did all this other stuff. C'mon the damn phone you had didn't even have a color screen at the time. I don't think Vcast was even around until a few years ago.

     

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  29.  
    identicon
    Vincent Clement, Jan 25th, 2008 @ 12:06pm

    Bad Strategy

    They should have sued one of the smaller companies first. Buy suing all these companies at once, all the companies can pool their resources and hopefully crush this company into oblivion, exactly where they belong.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  30.  
    identicon
    ehrichweiss, Jan 25th, 2008 @ 12:18pm

    Re: Re: angry dude - defending the indefensible

    HA!! You're one to talk about a "looser". Only a loser would repeatedly read a blog that they claim to hate. Or even worse, claim to have the latest-and-greatest invention but apparently not one good enough to actually tell anyone what it is.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  31.  
    identicon
    angry dude, Jan 25th, 2008 @ 12:31pm

    Re: Re: Re: angry dude - defending the indefensibl

    Hey little retarded dude

    Did youe mom drop you on your head when you were little ?
    Why do you think that I want to disclose my patent here so you can shit on it without understanding a single paragraph ?
    This place is for shitty talk, not for serious patent claim analysis

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  32.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 25th, 2008 @ 12:31pm

    Re:

    Thanks...

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  33.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 25th, 2008 @ 12:46pm

    Troubles with the Nokiacapsule

    Troubles with the Nokiacapsule: a quick writeup.

    Many troubles exist with the NokiaCapsule. The first, and most glaring one is that you have one year from disclosure of an idea to file a patent for it. I believe the video posted showed a post date of sometime early last year.

    Then we get into the Fesability/Go-To-Market analysis:
    From a technology perspective, I wouldn't say it's impossible, but it's damn near impossible. For example, to get a battery with energy density to drive a 1-watt transmitter (this is the power that phones transmit on) requires new batteries that, quite frankly don't exist. Then there's the ten-gig of memory, which requires space in the form of sdram chips, and unfortunately that hasn't miniturized to the point where it can be packaged into a device small enough to enter your ear canal.

    If a device could be small enough to enter into your ear canal that emits 1.6 watt of power, then, erm.. the FDA would be very interested in it as they have SAR/radiation absorption that eneds to be addressed.

    Then there's specialized ASICs that need to be created to run the voice recognition. I imagine you'll need an entire R&D team to accomplish this.

     

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  34.  
    identicon
    yeha, Jan 25th, 2008 @ 12:50pm

    This is just stupid.

     

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  35.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 25th, 2008 @ 1:00pm

    My RAZR can do everything that this 'patent' claims. So I guess I will have to go back to my old brick phone or bag phone soon. SCHWEET! I always loved lugging that thing around!

     

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  36.  
    identicon
    Falindraun, Jan 25th, 2008 @ 1:01pm

    Re: prior art or another target

    I fully agree with you another mike, but lets compromise lets put their lawsuits on hold for 6 months while they create a phone. Then if they have market failure we can all laugh at them.

     

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  37.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 25th, 2008 @ 1:03pm

    Re: prior art or another target

    "A mobile entertainment and communication device ..."

    Would my laptop with a web cam then qualify?

     

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  38.  
    identicon
    Ted L Nancy, Jan 25th, 2008 @ 1:05pm

    Re: Re: My new patent

    I would also like to patent an "anti-grave roll over patent" to keep our forefathers from rolling over in their graves. If they can't roll, then they'll be supportive! Or I'll sue them!

    Simpsons Did It!

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  39.  
    identicon
    Chronno S. Trigger, Jan 25th, 2008 @ 1:13pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: angry dude - defending the indefen

    Again, Angry Dude's ego is showing.

    How about you show us your patent and then explain it to us? We aren't as dumb as you think.

    As of present, we have this as your patent (Please tell me I'm wrong). If this is your patent, I can understand you don't want to admit it.

     

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  40.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 25th, 2008 @ 1:22pm

    Re: Anyone actually look this thing up?

    Granted the claims are overly broad, but the original filing date is from 1997.

    In 1997, all you had to do was watch old branding videos from 1993 from AT&T.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TZb0avfQme8

     

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  41.  
    identicon
    Joe Smith, Jan 25th, 2008 @ 1:26pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: angry dude - defending the indefen

    This place is for shitty talk, not for serious patent claim analysis

    Where do you post "serious patent claim analysis"? You post over on patentlyo, but it is the same crap you post here.

     

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  42.  
    identicon
    david Peasley, Jan 25th, 2008 @ 1:36pm

    Every mac would count under this.

     

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  43.  
    identicon
    Freddie, Jan 25th, 2008 @ 1:39pm

    Re: My new patent

    Ya and while your patenting patents im going to patent lawsuits so I can sue you and everyone else who sues!

     

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  44.  
    identicon
    angry dude, Jan 25th, 2008 @ 1:45pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: angry dude - defending the ind

    actually joe, my day-time IP address (which unfortunately I can't fake) was banned from posting on patentlyo
    The guy who owns that blog (establishment patent attorney or at least that's what he thinks about himself) apparently doesn't like what I post there (100% truth BTW) ...
    I guess it happened after I called that piece of corporate shit Marshall Phelps a real patent troll
    Heck nobody likes to hear the truth...
    Still I can do all I want from home, so you will have a pleasure of reading some more of my comments on various personalities involved with so-called "patent reform"..

    beer time now
    see you in hell

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  45.  
    identicon
    ehrichweiss, Jan 25th, 2008 @ 1:50pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: angry dude - defending the indefen

    Ahh, climbed out from under the bridge, eh, troll. Or is that "shitty patent troll"? The only reason I might not understand your patent is because the crayons or markers smeared.

     

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  46.  
    identicon
    chad, Jan 25th, 2008 @ 1:52pm

    Re: Anyone actually look this thing up?

    "Granted the claims are overly broad, but the original filing date is from 1997."

    I don't know what everyone else was doing in 1997, but everyone I was around was talking about combining the internet with everything, fishtanks, soda machines, coffee makers, refrigerators, phones, etc. It was clear at the time that these things would happen, what wasn't clear at the time was that patent trolling would be profitable. It looks like the original idea of the patent was "combine the internet with a phone". That was novel then, though I am not sure it was non-obvious.

     

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  47.  
    identicon
    ehrichweiss, Jan 25th, 2008 @ 1:53pm

    Re: re: angry dude - defending the indefensible

    Angry Dude...eloquent...bwahahah. He talks like what we call "poor white trash" around these parts.

     

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  48.  
    identicon
    ehrichweiss, Jan 25th, 2008 @ 1:54pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: angry dude - defending the

    alcoholic as well huh.

     

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  49.  
    identicon
    Mike Hoy, Jan 25th, 2008 @ 2:09pm

    Put the disgust into context

    I doubt that many of the commentators above actually read the patent before passing judgment on this particular case. Further, many of the comments miss the distinction between copyright and patent protection. However, it is certainly true that many patent holders use "continuation" patents to extend the duration of old patents, and that many patents are obvious, or simply combinations of existing technology. One glaring example comes to mind: there is a patent to use a USB port on a slot machine. Duh. (Slot machines are just personal computers in an expensive case.)

    It is easy to criticize the PTO, but the truth is the government doesn't fund enough patent examiners to do a decent job screening out the nonsense. It is also easy to criticize the "leech" lawyers, and we should also support a rule that allows a prevailing defendant to recover attorney fees and costs from both the plaintiff and the lawyer who takes a BS case on a contingent basis.

    All that said, there will always be a debate about whether a particular patent promotes or diminishes creativity. We hear the debate all the time: drugs and other medical technology should not be patented vs. without patents we would not have drugs or other medical technology. But if you consider the entire system as a whole, and don't focus on the most eggregious cases, the system still works pretty damn well. The USA is not in any danger of losing its position as the birthplace of innovation and the best technology.

    There are far more serious problems to bringing good technology to markets. For example, much of the developed world has faster internet connections than we do because the phone, cable, and wireless companies have so much invested in older technology, because the government doesn't invest in newer technology, and because the old guard uses political power to stop new entrants into the market. Where the USA lags, it is more because of monopoly power and political economy more than our patent system.

    Our long-term economic and technological advantage is also eroded by the way we allocate other resources. The trillion-dollar invasion/occupation of Iraq might, arguably, have some payoff in the future. But imagine spending the same trillion dollars on wind/solar/geothermal/coal, new communications technology, new agricultural technology, etc., all of which yields a fairly certain payoff. In the big picture, the cheesy patent extortion cases are pretty small compared with the vast misallocation of resources foisted upon us by the politicians.

    Regards, Mike

     

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  50.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 25th, 2008 @ 2:25pm

    Re: Put the disgust into context

    Well said, Mike. I've been conceptualizing the same ideas you've mentioned for sometime now.

    We're seeing an incredible misallocation of funds and resources. The cycle is broken, and transfer of wealth outside of the US needs to be re-evaluated.

    Imagine where we'd be if even 10% of what you proposed was accomplished. Countrywide Mortgage has been on the brink of collapse for sometime now. The company that holds 1 out of 5 mortgages in the USA. Gold is at a ten year high which indicates that the strength of the dollar is declining in the world market's eyes.

    And yes, it's simple economics. The reallocation of resources to outside the US should be scruitinized by the next administration.

    On a personal note, what do you think of Ron Paul?

    Kudos!

     

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  51.  
    identicon
    4-80-sicks, Jan 25th, 2008 @ 2:28pm

    Re: Anyone actually look this thing up?

    Granted the claims are overly broad, but the original filing date is from 1997. Everyone is looking at their phone right now and saying "how could someone get a patent on this?" or "I could send a picture of my phone to them as prior art." Well go find your phone and its capabilities from 1997 and show me how it accessed the Internet and did all this other stuff.

    Just because something didn't exist ten years ago doesn't mean it's non-obvious. A phone is a communication device. Everybody wants to get on the internet. Cell phones need screens, to display caller ID, contacts, etc. Tell me nobody would realize that screens could be made color and a phone can connect to the internet. Once you're connecting, of course you want to download files. Which means you'll want removable storage. And a camera phone is just two devices that people like to have. You can't just slap existing things together and get a patent on that. Maybe to a caveman, but for a person in today's world, (or 1997) which is filled with color screens, cell phones, digital cameras, portable computing devices, and the internet, a device like this is simply a logical step.

     

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  52.  
    identicon
    Joe Smith, Jan 25th, 2008 @ 2:28pm

    Re: Put the disgust into context

    But if you consider the entire system as a whole, and don't focus on the most egregious cases, the system still works pretty damn well.But the egregious cases tell us where the problems are and the problems seem to me to be mostly in digital/software/business method patents where advances in microprocessors made certain advances not merely possible but inevitable. By focusing reform on the egregious cases we can avoid throwing the baby out with the bathwater.

     

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  53.  
    identicon
    zhenchyld, Jan 25th, 2008 @ 2:35pm

    Re: My new patent

    LOOOOOOOOOOL

    mike for the win.

     

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  54.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 25th, 2008 @ 2:38pm

    Re: Re: Anyone actually look this thing up?

    Just because something didn't exist ten years ago doesn't mean it's non-obvious. A phone is a communication device. Everybody wants to get on the internet. Cell phones need screens, to display caller ID, contacts, etc. Tell me nobody would realize that screens could be made color and a phone can connect to the internet.

    So this is a good point. I'm not a patent attorney, and this analysis is based on just observations.

    As a patent holder, you should have two goals with the patent:

    1.) Bring the product to market.
    2.) License the innovation to others.

    Unfortunately a third result has surfaced in the past few years, which is to do neither, and sue for back royalties. Remember, once the patent is filed, you do recieve a "patent pending" status which allows you to proactively market your invention while the final pieces are delivered.

    Those who fail to market the pending patent/idea/invention, maybe should be scrutinized more carefully before patent status is granted.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  55.  
    identicon
    Anon, Jan 25th, 2008 @ 3:24pm

    Re: Question

    16 years ago would be 1992. In 1992 there existed this thing called a VCR. Utilizing a VCR, one could "record your shows ahead of time", "rewind", and "fast forward". The "fast forward" functionality was very useful for the purpose of skipping past commericals.

    You did not have an origional idea, although I can see a 14 year old not being aware of something called a VCR in 1992.

    For a better point of reference, I was "recording my shows ahead of time", "rewinding" and "fast forwarding" over commericals as far back as 1983 when my family aquired it's first VCR.

    That is 25 years ago, and VCR's had existed since about the 1975-1976 timeframe at that point.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  56.  
    identicon
    Another Me, Jan 25th, 2008 @ 3:33pm

    Re:

    My friend worked at many fast food places and says not to eat anything at any of them.

    (+1 Insightful)

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  57.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 25th, 2008 @ 3:34pm

    Ever hear of Dick Tracy

    ...who had a wrist radio very early on but the author of the strip morphed it to a wrist computer/phone/radio later, but well before 1997. (I don't think the author, Chester Gould, even lived that long.) Should have been considered obvious given that.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  58.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 25th, 2008 @ 3:49pm

    This is what Capitalism is about. Unfair leverage over your common man. Lets not make this into something unusual, it's the system working exactly as it was designed to do. We allow this sort of thing because we'd much rather the chance to fuck over each other and come out on top than actually have a fair world to live in.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  59.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 25th, 2008 @ 3:55pm

    Re: prior art or another target

    YES, they MUST have a working product to sue! that might stop them!?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  60.  
    identicon
    angry dude, Jan 25th, 2008 @ 3:56pm

    Re: Re: Re: Anyone actually look this thing up?

    "As a patent holder, you should have two goals with the patent:
    1.) Bring the product to market.
    2.) License the innovation to others."

    Well said, dude, but have you ever tried ?
    Try it once and you'll sing a different tune

    Unless you have at least 10 mil in the bank you can do neither...
    No prospective licensee will even talk to you, for a simple reason: you can't sue them for patent infringement

    a harsh reality check for undercapitalized patent holders trying to license their patents

    Alex Poltorak wrote a book on realities of patent licensing
    Read it, dude:
    http://www.amazon.com/Essentials-Licensing-Intellectual-Property-Wiley/dp/0471432334/ref=pd_b xgy_b_text_b

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  61.  
    identicon
    mike dabiero, Jan 25th, 2008 @ 4:40pm

    Re: My new patent

    this was the best comment and I laughed my ass off for about 30 mins....!!!!!!

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  62.  
    identicon
    jf, Jan 25th, 2008 @ 5:36pm

    did anyone actually read the patent?

    I mean seriously, it was originally filed in 1997 and after reading it, it sounds at least moderately legit. heaven forbid any of you, you know, think on your own.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  63.  
    identicon
    anonymous, Jan 25th, 2008 @ 6:16pm

    Clear Prior Art: IBM Simon

    The IBM Simon was the first smartphone and came out in 1994. It could even play midi files. =)

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  64.  
    identicon
    Larry, Jan 25th, 2008 @ 6:23pm

    Another gleaming example of the worst of us

    Another example of the fact that as a race we are just not ready for prime time.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  65.  
    identicon
    eecarolinee, Jan 25th, 2008 @ 8:42pm

    There is a culture of scamming in this society... people by the ton expect massive "lottery wins" for doing little. Think of the RIAA.. here are "artists" who expect virtually infinite reward from society for precious little productivity. So it is with this kind of situation... non-producers have subverted the system os it serves non-producers. After all, the non-producers are the ones with the time to wheedle the system. While they are busy working to set up some scam by way of "wheedling the rules" they are not missed by society since they are nearly useless to it anyhow. So we have a society where the most useless have the time and resources to extort unearned benefits for themselves at the expense of the producers.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  66.  
    identicon
    R. H., Jan 25th, 2008 @ 8:51pm

    Re: Re: My new patent

    Didn't I read something here about IBM doing that already?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  67.  
    identicon
    R. H., Jan 25th, 2008 @ 8:53pm

    Re: Re: prior art or another target

    Well, if they hold the correct patents couldn't they simply reverse-engineer some device already on the market since they technically own the patent anyway?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  68.  
    identicon
    Xenophore, Jan 25th, 2008 @ 9:47pm

    Re: My new patent

    Oh, please. Everyone knows that Dr. Evil's adoptive father invented the question mark.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  69.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 25th, 2008 @ 11:58pm

    Minerva - That company that suing the wireless industry.

    Taken from press releases at the company website:
    http://www.gigatec.com/


    -------------------------------
    Cell Phone Manufacturers' License Issue
    Minerva Offers Generous Terms

    -------------------------------

    November 1st, 2003 -- Minerva Industries, Inc. is providing the following options to the cell phone manufacturers and line carriers:

    1. To settle prior to a filed suit: 6% Royalties.
    2. After a suit has been filed, the rate will be 8%royalties, plus attorneys' fees and other damage charges that may apply. For settlement or license negotiation, contact our patent or trial attorneys.

    Note: International roaming calls will be handled separately once the guidelines from the U.S. Government agency are received. Over 50 million visitors use international roaming calls annually. That causes at least 200 million dollars damages in U.S. tax revenues annually. The phone line carriers already have reached a permanent agreement for the international roaming calls with over 120 countries (e.g. AT&T Wireless 120 to 220 countries roaming).



    -------------------------------
    Memory Cards and USB
    July 18, 2005

    -------------------------------

    Minerva Industries Inc. ,after a year of anticipation, received a response from the USPTO to file two divisional patent applications for memory cards and USB stemming from the 139 continuing claims on patent # 6278884 and # 6681120.

    These patent filings apply to accessories dealing with secured memory cards with pre-recorded data or flash memory and USB data cable connections between cell phone and various devices.

    Cell phone accessory manufacturers of memory cards and USB connectors each estimate supplying over 500 million units this year.


    -------------------------------
    CEO Message:
    -------------------------------

    CEO's Message 2006
    It is my hope to declare the year 2006 with you as the year of great harvest. For the past nine years we invested our time, energy, and over $800,000 in legal fees alone to support our cell phone patent. I believe that we have thoroughly amended the core features of the cell phone patent to truly be state of the art, surpassing any patents of the past and permanently securing opportunities for devices of the future.
    Just as the title of the invention states, “a mobile entertainment and communication device for communicating with the Internet or remotely located telephones”, our cell phone patent includes core features for capturing, storing, reproducing, transmitting, receiving, uploading, and downloading of combined sounds and real-time moving images through the Internet as well as between cell phones and other devices (computer, printer, television, electronic devices...). Furthermore, the patent features a music player, multi-media player, games, radio, GPS with images, emergency call function, interruption, low ambient light, sensor activation, voice control, answering, wired or wireless earphone, speakerphone, controlling of skipped data, equalizer, balancing sounds, USB cable, audio recorder, video camcorder, audible alarm, secured socket, replaceable memory card and prerecorded data card. A separate patent also provides a universal charger and holder on the car dashboard to utilize the camera and other prominent functions of the Internet cell phone patent.
    Although it was merely a dream in the past, 3G phones are now a reality with almost all phone carriers upgrading their systems to 3G phones. In fact, some of the core features of the patent has been used since late 2000. These recent 3G advances in the industry however opens more doors to take advantage of all our core features.

    In 2005, approximately 780 million cell phones were marketed worldwide and 18% (approx. 140 million) were sold in the U.S. Surprisingly, an additional 50 million visitors from the remaining 82% of the foreign market utilizes core features in the U.S. without ever paying license fees. In consideration of this fact, it is our goal to pursue legal action to maximize compensation beyond the typical 5.5 to 6% fees in royalties.

    I am very excited about the New Year with the opportunities ahead and the expectation of two to three additional patent grants. May the year 2006 bring good health and happiness. Please keep our corporation in your prayers as we prepare for the year of harvest.

    CEO/President
    John Ki Kim

    -------------------------------
    About CEO, John Kim
    -------------------------------
    During the past 39 years, Mr. John Kim has been engaged in various business experience and public services. He was the president of Korean Traders Association of America in 1977, founder of the World Overseas Korean Traders' Association in 1981, chairman of the Korean Olympic Supporting Committee of America in 1984, and the first president of U.S Korean American Inventors Association in 1991. Since 1983, he has been a member of National Republican Congressional Committee's Business Advisory Council, by which he was awarded a gold medal as a business leader. Mr. Kim has acquired patents for more than 20 inventions. He has won in a patent lawsuit over a conglomerate which lasted for three years. His diverse experience and prominent background are a strong asset for the company's steady growth.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  70.  
    identicon
    STARFOXtjb, Jan 26th, 2008 @ 3:27am

    "a mobile entertainment and communication device...with removable storage, an internet connection, a camera and the ability to download audio or video files." You all do realize that the above statement can also pertain to laptops PDA's PSP's and any other mobile device with these features. After all a Smart Phone is really just a smaller form of a laptop.

    Basically a few of you have said that this country is going to hell in a hand basket I must upon review of recent events concur it's only a matter of time before we are oppressed to the point of subjugation. And frankly to those that would rather trade freedom for security wake up retards. Get you some intestinal fortitude and fight for your right to survive its natures rule either you fend off your attacker or become food. If you want a government to protect you fine you can be their bitch I sure as hell ain't going to be.
    And to the issue of greedy corperations ya'll can go to hell too, nothing wrong with providing a fun and useful product but you dont have to be a dick about it. You make it we buy it thats all there should be in this biz.

    Im glad i can be happy with a life working as a dish washer I have everything i need and one hell of a computer guess you greedy CEO types could prolly learn a bit from us poor people.
    BTW i dont need to be rich to have security all i need are the will to survive and the ability to fight.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  71.  
    identicon
    Karbofos, Jan 26th, 2008 @ 6:01am

    Let's register patent for a 'life-processes'!
    Anyway, it will exist, early or late. How ultimate aim.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  72.  
    identicon
    Elfresh, Jan 26th, 2008 @ 7:38am

    Re:

    +1 they are screwing People over man, thats really fucked up seriously

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  73.  
    identicon
    European, Jan 26th, 2008 @ 8:51am

    It's only in the us...

    What I think is funny is that this would neve rbe possible to get through in europe... not that says anything about systems, but I think the concept of not beeing allowed to patent a idea or something that already is known or published is a good thing.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  74.  
    identicon
    maxwell, Jan 26th, 2008 @ 9:29am

    filing date != closing date

    In 1997 they filed a patent for "phone". Then every 6 months they added whatever new features appeared on the market in the last 6 months. Those features were researched, engineered and built by someone else. They kept doing this, twice a year, for ten years. Then they closed the application and now they have a patent for everything.

    They did *NOT* file a patent in 1997 for a phone with "music player, multi-media player, games, radio, GPS with images, emergency call function, interruption, low ambient light, sensor activation, voice control, answering, wired or wireless earphone, speakerphone, controlling of skipped data, equalizer, balancing sounds, USB cable, audio recorder, video camcorder, audible alarm, secured socket, replaceable memory card and prerecorded data card."

    This is like seeing a computer in 1977 and patenting a 'portable versiuon'. Then wait 30 years and announce you have patented the laptop and every feature in a 2007 model. The application date is locked forever at '1977'. Congrats, you won the half the PC market today!

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  75.  
    identicon
    silentObserver, Jan 26th, 2008 @ 10:02am

    Prior Art! are u serious ?????

    No one cried foul when individual interests were granted patent for Haldi (spice), Neem ( a tropical plant with medicinal properties) or Basmati (Variety of Rice) which was being used for centuries in Asia.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  76.  
    identicon
    SilentObserver, Jan 26th, 2008 @ 10:13am

    Re:It's only in the us... by European

    Hmm..

    When it comes to robbing the weak, no one is exeption. The case of European Patent Office (EPO) granting patent to a new variety of wheat is clear indication.
    Monsanto.http://www.tribuneindia.com/2003/20030825/agro.htm#1

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  77.  
    identicon
    ASFx, Jan 26th, 2008 @ 10:19am

    Re: Re:

    spaceballs!

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  78.  
    identicon
    Tilt User, Jan 26th, 2008 @ 11:15am

    Windows Mobile

    Thank goodness Microsoft Windows Mobile devices are safe. "controlling of skipped data, equalizer, balancing sounds,". Right in there is the loophole. We don't have an equalizer in WM Media Player so we must not be infringing ;)

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  79.  
    identicon
    rabbivj, Jan 26th, 2008 @ 7:33pm

    this is why I hate IP-Holding firms...morons...

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  80.  
    identicon
    @STARFOXtjb, Jan 26th, 2008 @ 10:02pm

    Re:

    Dishwashers don't use fancy words like subjugation I'd click on a button to give you a thumbs up, but none exists.

    +5 Informative

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  81.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 26th, 2008 @ 10:21pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Anyone actually look this thing up

    "As a patent holder, you should have two goals with the patent:
    1.) Bring the product to market.
    2.) License the innovation to others."

    angry dude:

    Well said, dude, but have you ever tried ?
    Try it once and you'll sing a different tune

    Unless you have at least 10 mil in the bank you can do neither...


    So I know two people from College who had great idea, found a lawfirm to market the idea to. The lawyers believed it was great idea, and decided to fund the costs to file the patents for a percentage of the royalty.

    In the end, it ended up paying for my friends college while I was slaving away.

    So yes. I know what it's about. Unfortunately NokiaCapsule or whatever the devil it is, isn't marketable because it's not technically possible using today's technology.

    Good Luck.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  82.  
    identicon
    angry dude, Jan 27th, 2008 @ 12:01pm

    No such thing

    "So I know two people from College who had great idea, found a lawfirm to market the idea to. The lawyers believed it was great idea, and decided to fund the costs to file the patents for a percentage of the royalty."

    Nope, no freeking chance at all, dude

    No lawfirm will back you up financially to file your patent, plus it's against the rules
    It's all your money, dude (not much money actually, about 15-20 grand from filing to issue including all attorney fees)
    Well, when I was shopping around for good patent attorney I found one crooked guy who offered me a "deal": a 50% discount on his fees in return for 50% ownership in the resulting patent...

    needless to say, I rejected this "deal" outright and found another attorney, paid 12 grand right upfront... and 6 more grand upon patent issue

    You don't know what you are talking about dude
    Stop confusing other people, cause they might get a wrong idea...

    No such thing as free lunch, dude

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  83.  
    identicon
    Hellfang, Jan 28th, 2008 @ 1:09am

    SmartPhone Copyright!

    Hahahaha .. that is awesome!! I wanna see these guys, you know off the bat they good some good weed.
    I'm really curious!!

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  84.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 28th, 2008 @ 3:57am

    Re: Re: My new patent

    That is genius.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  85.  
    identicon
    Dan, Jan 28th, 2008 @ 5:40am

    "needless to say, I rejected this "deal" outright and found another attorney, paid 12 grand right upfront... and 6 more grand upon patent issue

    You don't know what you are talking about dude
    Stop confusing other people, cause they might get a wrong idea..."

    Because angry dude's "experiences" MUST apply to everyone. No one is allowed to have a better experience with patents than angry dude. Please don't break his glass house.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  86.  
    identicon
    lewisshepherd, Jan 28th, 2008 @ 8:21am

    Re: My new patent

    ... Ah, but I'm patenting the quizzical-eyebrow-raise, so I have that covered.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  87.  
    identicon
    yuriy, Jan 29th, 2008 @ 3:54am

    I would not be surprised if the firm owned by russians :).

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  88.  
    identicon
    Kermit Williams, Mar 18th, 2008 @ 10:23pm

    Patents

    Patents do not protect or save ideas and if you do patent a idea you better do these things or your patent is no good document or stamp or logos on a website can protect the date when you got to court like i did your learn patents dont protect ideas really i dont know why companie lie. and the pto will tell you we dont protect ideas we just date the ideas so dont think you got gold and patent dont sell ideas so sorry if i think of a idea first slap it on a website with a logo i can when in court over your patent your have to still pay me a judge will tell you that so stop talking about patent like they great .

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  89.  
    identicon
    Kevin Warner, Nov 10th, 2008 @ 12:41pm

    Gift's and home decor website

    To Everyone who has a dispute with Warner Music regarding a Patent. This Warnerwishes CO.is in No way Associated with the Warner Music Co that you are Referring too. I'm a Single Individual who has just started up an internet website which I invite all to look at and possible patron my products. Below is a link to Warner wishes. Thank you all for your time. Kevin Warner www.Warnerwishes.com

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  90.  
    identicon
    au pair, Sep 25th, 2010 @ 3:52pm

    I found all information I was looking for

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  91.  
    identicon
    alan, Nov 23rd, 2010 @ 3:05pm

    That is great, thx very much forall the informations I was looking for. au pair Very very good au pair usa I wish you all the best au pair world
    find au pair It helped me a lot au pair uk

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  92.  
    identicon
    job, Feb 23rd, 2011 @ 3:06pm

    jobs

    Will come back again. I just now added your blog to my favorites.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  93.  
    identicon
    forum profile backlinks, May 10th, 2011 @ 3:22pm

    Will come back again. I just now added your blog to my favorites.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]


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