Linked by Jordan Spencer Cunningham on Wed 29th Apr 2009 04:08 UTC
Legal The Open Innovation Network has found a few of Microsoft's patents in dealing with the past TomTom/FAT case a bit fishy and have therefore submitted them for review of prior-art to the Linux community at large.
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SterlingNorth
Member since:
2006-02-21

Patents 5579517 and 5758352 were challenged earlier this decade by the Public Patent Foundation. PUBPAT won the initial case, but Microsoft won the patents back on appeal. Did the OIN find additional prior art, because if they didn't, the fate will probably be the same as before, with those two patents being upheld. I don't think they changed the patent reexamination process, so it will still be weighted on the side of Microsoft, plus they'll need new evidence if they don't want it dismissed out of hand.

Reply Score: 2

SterlingNorth Member since:
2006-02-21

Patents 5579517 and 5758352 were challenged earlier this decade by the Public Patent Foundation. PUBPAT won the initial case, but Microsoft won the patents back on appeal. Did the OIN find additional prior art, because if they didn't, the fate will probably be the same as before, with those two patents being upheld. I don't think they changed the patent reexamination process, so it will still be weighted on the side of Microsoft, plus they'll need new evidence if they don't want it dismissed out of hand.

Link to prior decision on patents... http://news.cnet.com/Microsofts-file-system-patent-upheld/2100-1012...

Reply Parent Score: 1

lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

Patents 5579517 and 5758352 were challenged earlier this decade by the Public Patent Foundation. PUBPAT won the initial case, but Microsoft won the patents back on appeal. Did the OIN find additional prior art, because if they didn't, the fate will probably be the same as before, with those two patents being upheld. I don't think they changed the patent reexamination process, so it will still be weighted on the side of Microsoft, plus they'll need new evidence if they don't want it dismissed out of hand.


Groklaw has quite a few articles about this on its patents page:

http://www.groklaw.net/staticpages/index.php?page=20050402193202442

AFAIK, this doesn't amount to a "case". There was a dispute raised by PUBPAT to the USPTO about the validity of the Microsoft FAT-LFN patents, on the grounds that the concepts therein were obvious and not innovative at all. This objection was initially upheld, Microsoft appealed, USPTO reinstated the grant of patent.

This has all be decided, so far, by patent examiners. That is a long way off having the patent challenged and validated (or invalidated) in a court.

The post above has kindly provided a link to an article.

A quote from there:
Two patents covering one of Microsoft's main Windows file-storage systems are valid after all, federal patent examiners have decided.


It does not say "a judge has decided". This is like the USPTO saying "yeah, we were right all along, so we get to keep our fee for Microsoft's patent application".

It would appear that the OIN, in frustration at the USPTO re-instating such ludicrous patents, is now gathering evidence to legally challenge these patents. They appear this time around to be going for a argument based on "prior art" in addition to their previous argument of "obvious" and "not innovative".

If this comes before a real court, in light of the recent in-re Bilski decision, there is an excellent chance these patents would be toast.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bilski

In light of this decision, more recent patent applications for "computer implemented inventions" have not been granted.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bilski#Impact

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Computer_implemented_inventions

Even if the OIN comes up with no further strength to its "obviousness" argument, and it cannot find any valid prior art, even then there is a good chance to get these patents dismissed in light of the in-re Bilski decision.

Caveat: IANAL. My argument above depends on logic, so it may be inapplicable to "legal" rea$oning.

Edited 2009-04-29 11:50 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 4