Legal Issues

by Mike Masnick




Microsoft Patents Reading 20 Records At A Time

from the wonderful dept

theodp writes "On Thursday, the USPTO disclosed that Microsoft has gone back to the patent trough seeking to extend its patent for a System and method for maintaining a user's state within a database table, an 'invention' that consists of retrieving the previous or next 20 records from a database in response to 'previous' or 'next' buttons. Perhaps the USPTO could take a gander at this 1996 COBOL/DB2 program, which implements Microsoft's 2004 'invention'. "

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    ConceptJunkie (profile), 21 Oct 2004 @ 6:33pm

    1996?

    I was writing code like that in 1986... and I bet you could find examples from 1966!

    I've said it before: Some company is going to patent something really basic, like the for loop, and then proceed to hold the entire U.S. economy hostage, and by the time the courts work it all out and people get serious about Patent reform the stock market will be down 3000 points and half the software developers in the country will be out of work.

    Just say no to the USPTO rubber stamp.

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

    • identicon
      Kyle, 21 Oct 2004 @ 7:12pm

      Re: 1996?

      I know I was maintaining code that did this in 1995 -- and it wasn't new then by a long stretch (dunno if it went as far back as 1986 but I'm there with ya).
      I'm not a patent lawyer by any means, but it seems to me that given how broken the system has become, the ability to challenge patents (pending or otherwise) should be opened up and that might reduce some of the worst abuses.

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

  • identicon
    Sniffy McNickles, 22 Oct 2004 @ 12:42pm

    Hm... patents...

    For their next trick, they'll discover this cool thing called "set theory", a revolutionary way to categorize and organize things. While there was this "open source" zealot called Cantor who tooled around with such things in his spare time, Microsoft will be hailed for the embracing and extending this innovation.

    And then they'll sue Sybase for infringing on the patent.

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

  • identicon
    zugzug, 23 Oct 2004 @ 1:35am

    unbelievable

    Just another example of Microsoft's attempt to stifle innovation, and make a quick buck in the process.

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


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