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  1. Gerorne's Avatar
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       #1  
    Take a look... haven't read it myself yet...

    http://news.cnet.com/8301-17938_105-10150436-1.html

    Edit: Or... this is all being discussed in the apple might sue palm thread... and I missed that since I just got back home.
    Last edited by Gerorne; 01/26/2009 at 10:24 PM.
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  2. #2  
    If that only covers pinch-to-zoom, I can live without that.

    Can't see how many other components could be regarded as Apple originals.

    At least there are plenty of companies for a joint case against.
  3. #3  
    ... instructions for detecting one or more finger contacts with the touch screen display; instructions for applying one or more heuristics to the one or more finger contacts to determine a command for the device;
    According to the wording "one or more" One would think that covers ALL touch screen devices that use any sort of gesture. Literally that would put every other device maker in violation of this patents? Would it not?
    How Arrogant?

    Usually I am on the wall when it comes to Apple, but.......If they couldn't win the whole Windowing IP battle, they won't win this one. Would they?
  4. Gerorne's Avatar
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       #4  
    Here's another link. This one on the history of multi touch

    http://www.billbuxton.com/multitouchOverview.html
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  5. Scott_L's Avatar
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    #5  
    It's so ridiculous that one can patent a friggin pinch. Our patent system is such a joke. We have all used that exact motion in the air forever to imply small (or shrink) - so is Apple going to sue us for continuing to do this? I guess the only positive to this is that it shows they are scared.
  6. #6  
    Apple has a bit of a history being slimy, but as has been mentioned, there are several patents that Palm could fire back with if Apple decided to throw a legal fit (turning off the radio via software is the big one). I'm also a little skeptical of anything coming from CNET these days, regardless of their "sources". I've found their coverage to be increasingly biased/lacking of late.

    Edit: Also, it looks like this patent was awarded AFTER the Pre was announced (at least based on CNETs report), so Palm could have a case there in terms of grandfather protection.
  7. #7  
    Sounds like yet another example of Patent Office incompetence. They simply don't have examiners with the expertise to understand technology and do a proper examination of prior art, nor to understand whlat is "obvious" from a technology standpoint. These are, after all, the same people who granted Amazon a patent on a shopping cart.

    Nonetheless, it could be a problem for Palm and other competitors, as it could cost a lot to prove the patent invalid. Palm's best defense, if Apple sues over this, would be to counter-sue based on patents they hold.
    Bob Meyer
    I'm out of my mind. But feel free to leave a message.
  8. #8  
    A better strategy for Palm would be to patent the use of fingers.

    Please, what an absolute garbage patent. Next up, using the english language on a smart phone. Using a Green key as a hot key for initiating a call, and likewise, the red key to end the call.

    Apple so revolutionised touch computing that every other competitor has come out with very similar takes on this.
  9. #9  
    This is actually being discussed in the Apple suing Palm thread.

    If you actually read the patent, you'll see that the patent has certain requirements that the pre doesn't seem to violate.
    The main part is that the heuristics be interpreted and processed by software that is stored in the devices memory or that it is a computer implemented method used in conjunction with a device with a touch screen.
    IOW the touchscreen must say that it has detected to independent points of contact at x,y and x,y. it also sends more coordinates showing that the conctacs are getting closer and closer, this informaiton is then plugged into some program that uses heuristics or some other computer implement method that uses hueristics on the device that the touchscreen is on and they determine that a pinch has been sent, then that program or other program handles decides how to handle that event be it closing a window, zooming out, whatever.

    How does this apply to how the Pre seems to handle it. Well in the case of the Pre it is the touchscreen itself that handles the heurisitcs and processing of the touches. All the programs in memory do is handle the event that is sent to it. The touchscreen that Palm uses is acutally smart, it tells the device that a pinch has been inputted at x,y The programs on the device only have to handle the pinch event. It doesn't need to verify whether a pinch has been sent.

    Of course the arguement could be made that the Cypress Semiconductors TrueTouch Touchscreen is a device with a touchscreen. Which could complicate the matter. I've been searching their patents to see if they've patented their truetouch system

    Another thing to keep in mind is that just because a patent is granted doesn't mean it'll hold up to testing in court. It also isn't valid in Europe since europe doesn't recognize sofware patents.
    --Nextel Blackberry 7520 -> Sprint Treo 700p -> Sprint Treo 755p -> Sprint Pre
  10. #10  
    Look I'm sorry but I have to call shenangians on all you guys. Your bias and lust for the Pre is so thick that it is blinding you to the obvious truth.

    And that truth is:

    Apple has every right and reason to deserve these patents.

    I see on this thread over and over again crap about how pinching is not innovative, how the UI advances apple made are mundane and simple.

    Well, why was apple the first do it? If it was so fricken simple, why didn't anyone else come up with it?

    Hell, Palm has been the cell business for a bit and they sure as hell weren't the ones to figure this out first - Apple was.

    And if you're going to tell me some unheard of little company patented something like the pinch gesture back in 1976... well that's something different and perhaps those folks were deserve the patent.

    But baring that, Apple has legitimately earned the right to patent these gesture as they were the first to do so. The law agrees and as of yet no one has sued Apple arguing the contrary.

    Again, if Apple's ideas are so simple and not worthy of patents, why then has no one else beaten Apple to it?
  11. #11  
    Quote Originally Posted by CmdrGuard View Post
    Look I'm sorry but I have to call shenangians on all you guys. Your bias and lust for the Pre is so thick that it is blinding you to the obvious truth.

    And that truth is:

    Apple has every right and reason to deserve these patents.

    I see on this thread over and over again crap about how pinching is not innovative, how the UI advances apple made are mundane and simple.

    Well, why was apple the first do it? If it was so fricken simple, why didn't anyone else come up with it?

    Hell, Palm has been the cell business for a bit and they sure as hell weren't the ones to figure this out first - Apple was.

    And if you're going to tell me some unheard of little company patented something like the pinch gesture back in 1976... well that's something different and perhaps those folks were deserve the patent.

    But baring that, Apple has legitimately earned the right to patent these gesture as they were the first to do so. The law agrees and as of yet no one has sued Apple arguing the contrary.

    Again, if Apple's ideas are so simple and not worthy of patents, why then has no one else beaten Apple to it?

    First of all Apple did not patent the gestures. They merely patented a software or computer implemented method of detecting multipoint multitouch gestures based on heuristics on devices with a touch screen.. Of course these gestures have been used in other touch technologies. Apple is the first to bring multipoint multitouch gestures to the smartphone arena. Your typical scrolling gestures have appeared on touchscreen phones since there inception. So prior art exist and if the patent covers those particular gestures they will be invalidated due to prior art.

    Kudos to Apple for bringing something other companies have used on a larger scale to the cell phone arena.
    --Nextel Blackberry 7520 -> Sprint Treo 700p -> Sprint Treo 755p -> Sprint Pre
  12. Rhody's Avatar
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    #12  
    I know it's all in good fun, but I must voice my observation that none of you know what you're talking about. There's not one accurate post in this thread.
  13. #13  
    Well then I too must post in good fun.

    You don't know what you're talking about regarding us not knowing what we're talking about (haha).

    What are you basing this on?
  14. Gerorne's Avatar
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       #14  
    Hey! My original post was accurate! And if you have some knowledge, please share.
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  15. Rhody's Avatar
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    #15  
    Quote Originally Posted by CmdrGuard View Post
    Well then I too must post in good fun.

    You don't know what you're talking about regarding us not knowing what we're talking about (haha).

    What are you basing this on?
    I'm basing this on 15 years of experience in intellectual property law, both for the USPTO and as a practitioner.
  16. Rhody's Avatar
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    #16  
    Quote Originally Posted by Gerorne View Post
    Hey! My original post was accurate! And if you have some knowledge, please share.
    I will not give a patentability opinion on the patent in question. That would be irresponsible. However, the general knowledge I can impart is that you only have to infringe one claim to infringe the patent, and it doesn't have to be the claim that SedahDrol chooses. Generally, you interpret each claim as a whole, all features in combination. A patent has a strong presumption of validity. Even the Amazon patent mentioned earlier (which was not just for a shopping cart, but included a one-click component to allow the user to avoid the shopping cart), still had five claims hold up after the public dragged it through the gauntlet. There is a doctrine of equivalents, which may affect the scope of the claim, often making the claim broader. There is file wrapper estoppel, which may affect the scope of the claim, often making the claim narrower. In district court, a claim is interpreted as broadly as reasonably possible, while not reading on the prior art of record.

    There is a lot to patent law. That's why there are patent lawyers. There are patent lawyers who protect the interests of their clients, and there are patent laywers who protect the interests of potential infringers. And, there are patent examiners who protect the interests of the public while providing good customer service to the applicants, who happen to be their customers.

    It could very well be that Palm infringes the patent. Or, they could have cleverly avoided infringement. Either way, this sort of thing happens all the time. That's why companies get patents in the first place. Some companies, like Polaroid with the instant camera and 3M with the post-it note, use their patents to create a profitable monopoly. Most other companies license or cross-license their patents. Still other companies, like Mercedes with certain automobile safety features, give their intellectual property away.

    I think people here are speculating wildly, jumping to uninformed conclusions, and making a huge deal about nothing.
  17. Gerorne's Avatar
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       #17  
    That was very informative. Thank you.
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  18. machx's Avatar
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    #18  
    I hate Apple, way to cripple innovation.
  19. #19  
    Thanks Rhody for breaking it down for us!

    I wonder how Palm's patents can affect Apple if they decided to get litigious?

    Here is another article for your consumption...
  20. #20  
    Quote Originally Posted by Rhody View Post
    I think people here are speculating wildly, jumping to uninformed conclusions, and making a huge deal about nothing.
    It is not speculating or uniformed to note that Apple has a history, a proven record of some of the most aggressive and deep pocket legal tactics in using their patents.

    Palm is most vulnerable because it has the most shallow pockets and the lowest margins of error in bringing the Pre device to market, a device which is it sole and only hope for survival.
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