Steve Ballmer's Prophecy Comes True: Former Microsoft Execs Sue Red Hat, Novell Over Patents

from the funny-how-that-works dept

Jon writes in to let us know that a small patent holding firm, IP Innovation, has sued Red Hat and Novell over patent infringement concerning a ridiculously broad patent. As the Groklaw report outlines, the suing company is actually a subsidiary of Acacia, which is considered to be one of the more egregious firms in using bad patents to squeeze money out of companies. Groklaw also notes that Acacia has recently hired a bunch of execs from Microsoft, leading to the conspiracy theory that Steve Ballmer's recent predictions of patent lawsuits against Red Hat were more than random speculation. I'm not willing to go that far just yet, but as you can see from Ars Technica's breakdown of the patent earlier this year (when the company sued Apple), it describes very broadly the concept of workspaces in a computer user interface. This is yet another example of the worst of our patent system at work. Companies that offer innovative products getting sued using vague, overly broad patents on obvious ideas that never should have been granted in the first place.
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Filed Under: linux, open source, patents
Companies: acacia, microsoft, red hat

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  1. identicon
    Reed, 12 Oct 2007 @ 8:12pm

    Lets go out on the limb

    I know you don't want to be wrong Mike, but come on! First SCO with its secret Microsoft backing and now this from a affiliate of the company just after monkey boy predicts it?

    By the way, it's only a conspiracy if it is hidden, and there isn't much hiding here so far. Just like the the dinosaurs of the RIAA, the people involved in the proprietary model of software development are just starting to realize the comet is coming and no amount of lawyers will save them in the end.

    Good riddance to bad coding and poor philosophies IMHO

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