W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > public-web-plugins@w3.org > September 2003

Re: If MS pulls plug-in support, who do I sue

From: Hector Santos <winserver.support@winserver.com>
Date: Mon, 8 Sep 2003 20:42:00 -0400
Message-ID: <004d01c3766b$2f8d6640$e31a2343@FAMILY>
To: "Richard M. Smith" <rms@computerbytesman.com>, <public-web-plugins@w3.org>


> Mr. Smith, NOT all technologist are ignorant on the subject of computer

----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Hector Santos" <winserver.support@winserver.com>
To: "Richard M. Smith" <rms@computerbytesman.com>;
Sent: Monday, September 08, 2003 8:30 PM
Subject: Re: If MS pulls plug-in support, who do I sue

> Of course he can sue.  Anyone can take anyone to court, but that's besides
> the point.
> In my opinion,  Mr. Cowdrey has a perfect valid point and complaint and
> good, no take that back, great software trained lawyer would be able to
> raise the arguments addressing the fine point he made.
> And on the contrary, the very fact that this was an issue since 1996 makes
> the finer point that the key entity involved, namely Microsoft, was
> completely aware of the potential liability and damaging repercussions
> towards itself and the tertiary market place, and thus any further
> development,  promotion, mind molding, marketing of products, technical
> solutions or methods related to the technology in question, make Microsoft
> negligent and liable to any lost of exclusive income by the tertiary
> place.
> Beside there is similar precedence to start with.   When Microsoft pulled
> OS/2,  she settled with many companies who had invested millions based on
> OS/2 development.    I'm sure if Mr. Cowdrey can show lost in the
> then he address it with Microsoft.  It wouldn't be the first time.  Trust
> me.
> Mr. Smith, all technologist are ignorant on the subject of computer law.
> sold myself short recently by saying I  was complacent with recent
> That is true, however, I am quite familiar with the subject.  I always
> a majority of software patents filing are weak and would not hold up when
> challenged in a court of law.  For that, I admit to being naive.  That is
> what makes this case so interesting because it touches base with basic
> obvious technology that not even Microsoft can not defend against.   I was
> naive to feel that there is no power in Software patents.  Although,
> personally, that will change for me and I will begin to patent every
> software method that is thought up from here on out,  even more
> is that the industry must recognize how this and other nuisance software
> patents will begin to shut down progress in the industry.
> So based on this, I feel Microsoft should fight this nuisance patent to
> highest degree possible.  There is prior art and obviousness as a defense.
> Using the Mr. Pei defense was extremely weak.
> In addition,  the USPTO needs help in a mighty big way.  It needs help
> the software industry to show them that software today is a basic form of
> expressive communication.   You and I are communicating now in an delayed
> fashion.  The thought of patenting the basic idea of telling you to click
> this <CHAT WITH HECTOR NOW> tag or click this <ORDER PIZZA> tag is
> groundless based on the simple idea that it requires YOU to have software
> honor the request - which is something that is not only obvious but part
> every remote client/server system ever invented and certainly available
> before Mr. Dolye arrived on the scene.   Now, if you invented a way to
> transform that click to the next generation of expressive communications
> such as Thought Processing Kinetics, then I can see some patentable
> concept - a real breakthru!  But to take simple existing technologies and
> patent it because it happens to be the current "thing",  the WEB,  then it
> is baseless and shouldn't even been considered.  To borrow a phrase from
> Dorothy Packer:
>                 "This is not a patent claim to be tossed aside lightly.
>                               It should be thrown aside with great force."
> This is the type of argument that must be presented to the USPTO, Congress
> and the courts.      This nuisance patent and others guarantee to come
> enough are going to put a major dent in the industry.
> Sincerely,
> Hector Santos, CTO
> Santronics Software, Inc.
> http://www.santronics.com
> 305-431-2846 Cell
> 305-248-3204 Office
> ----- Original Message ----- 
> From: "Richard M. Smith" <rms@computerbytesman.com>
> To: <public-web-plugins@w3.org>
> Sent: Monday, September 08, 2003 7:24 PM
> Subject: RE: If MS pulls plug-in support, who do I sue
> >
> > I don't think you can sue anyone.  The only grounds that I can think of
> > is if Microsoft explicitly represented that Internet Explorer had no
> > patent liabilities.  I've never heard that claim being made.
> >
> > In general, patents are a hazard of doing business.  So are competitors.
> > Microsoft is currently involved in 30 other patent lawsuits according to
> > press reports.
> >
> > FWIW, the Eolas patent lawsuit was filed in Feb. 1999.  There has been a
> > good bit of press coverage over the suit for the past 4 1/2 years.
> > There was also a good bit of press coverage in 1995-6 when Eolas
> > announced they were applying for a patent on browser plugins and
> > applets.
> >
> > There is no reason to think that ActiveX controls will completely
> > disappear from Internet Explorer.  My reading of claim #1 of the '906
> > patent says that a control must have a display area within a browser
> > window.  ActiveX controls which are display-free shouldn't have a
> > problem with the patent (INAL, YMMV, etc.).  Also, an ActiveX control
> > which opens up its own non-browser window should be fine also (INAL,
> > YMMV, etc.).
> >
> > Richard
> >
> > -----Original Message-----
> > From: public-web-plugins-request@w3.org
> > [mailto:public-web-plugins-request@w3.org] On Behalf Of Russell Cowdrey
> > Sent: Monday, September 08, 2003 6:02 PM
> > To: 'public-web-plugins@w3.org'
> > Subject: If MS pulls plug-in support, who do I sue
> >
> >
> >
> > I've been reading for the past week or so and I don't have a master
> > stroke
> > to overcome the patent since it seems to be very broad and to me the
> > inclusion of mime types or the like is just absurd.  I am with a small
> > company that has an interesting new technology which is based on ActiveX
> > and
> > I just cannot see how my technology will survive if MS pulls support.
> > For
> > our small company we are talking millions in lost opportunity as well as
> > a
> > lot of current revenue.  I say all this because the Macromedias of the
> > world
> > concern me less than the little guy.
> >
> > Here is my thing.  If Microsoft was told in 1994 that they were in
> > violation
> > of patent pending technology but pushed forward and standardized their
> > browser on this very technology, then what recourse do I have against
> > Microsoft?  I feel that they have created a marketplace under false
> > pretenses.  Can I sue the W3C's member organizations for creating a
> > public
> > standard that was in violation? If I cannot sue either of these two
> > parties,
> > can I sue the US patent office to demonstrate that this absurd software
> > patent is in violation of my rights to due process?  If my company is
> > expected to lose millions because a public standard was allowed to be
> > patented, then I have to be able to have my day in court.
> >
> > I think we are hearing very little from Microsoft because I'm sure they
> > are
> > trying to weigh the cost of the lawsuits to come over the cost of the
> > patent
> > infringement.  Their best course of action is to come forward and put
> > their
> > full weight behind an appeal and to overturn this stupid patent.  I
> > really
> > think the ramifications are huge.
> >
> > I remember using a newsgroup reader on Next around 90 that I'm sure had
> > some
> > of the mime like features and I think that should be considered a
> > hypermedia
> > browsing application, but maybe it was just the cool visual interface
> > that
> > captivated me so. Anyways, as many have stated, the idea of packing a
> > reference to an external program had already been done to death and any
> > programmer worth a lick would have come up with a suitable solution.
> >
> > The thing is we have filed for two patents on our software, but
> > purposely
> > narrowed the scope to be specific to our area of use so as to not deny
> > some
> > other programmer the ability to use the solution we came up with in
> > other
> > fields.   One of the patents could have been very broad.  At the time I
> > was
> > of the opinion that you did it because everyone else was doing it, but
> > now
> > I'm firmly in the camp that they should not be allowed.  Losing millions
> > will do that to you :-).  Software development moves much to fast for
> > anyone
> > to keep up with all the new developments and thus stupid patents will
> > continue to get issued because of ignorance.  Here is to an end to
> > software
> > patents.
> >
> > Russell
> >
> >
Received on Monday, 8 September 2003 20:41:42 UTC

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