Re: [As-users] software patent regarding pager

Frank Gore (gore@projectpontiac.com)
Wed, 12 May 2004 13:03:08 -0400


On May 12, 2004 09:11, Albert 'Tigr' Dorofeev wrote:
> This is more than a little
> disturbing. I think that, indeed, the other WM development
> teams and GNU must be informed of this.
>
> There is plenty of prior art on the subject of this patent
> but only an organisation can fight a patent and it costs
> a lot of money. We need to raise enough noise to get some
> attention of GNU and maybe distros to this issue.

This information has actually been out for a while. I remember reading about 
it over a month ago, and lots of organizations are already fighting it. The 
problem is that if you read the patent application properly, it revolves 
around a specific way of changing desktops using a type of transition. So 
this is really an application for a patent that "improves" on prior art, not 
a patent that imitates prior art. That makes it a bit harder to disprove.

On the other hand, the specific way of changing desktops that Microsoft 
describes in this application HAS been done before, but only by this one guy 
who was working on 3D transitions for switching desktops. I forget what the 
software was called, but I'm pretty sure it was GPL'd.

Frank
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