Patent Office Has Problems With Infamous JPEG Patent
from the oh,-look-at-that dept
One of the more infamous patent problem situations has been Forgent's claim with a patent that they say covers JPEG image compression. This was a perfect example of a company that clearly had done nothing to help bring about JPEG image compression. The company had found a random patent they had bought from another company, and then retroactively figured it applied to JPEGs. Even the company admits that this patent was a lucky "lottery ticket" to riches — which is not what the patent system is supposed to encourage at all. Still that didn't stop them from going around suing companies and pressuring others to pay for a license they probably didn't need. Last year, a group found some prior art on the patent, and convinced the USPTO to review it. Today comes the news that the patent office has done an initial rejection of some of the broad claims at the heart of the patent. Forgent still gets the chance to respond, and this process is far from over. However, the interesting part is that the examiners believe the original patent filers knew of the specific prior art, and did not disclose it to the USPTO as required. It's yet another argument for having a better system for helping the USPTO understand the prior art and obviousness of a patent before the patent has been issued and can be used to divert money from actual research and innovation to legal fights.
Patent the next level of stupidity by Stupididness on May 29th, 2006 @ 5:21am
I suggest that TechDirt patent the next level of stupidity. I'm talking hardcore stupid, known affectionately as Stupididness. TechDirt has every right to this patent due to the constant Patent Troll hate speech and their crybabyThis, crybabyThat, my patent system is broken rhetoric. They just don't understand that there are those great "idea men" that happen to be lousy business men. The patent system gives them a chance to earn a living from their God given talent. If anything, the process needs to be simplified. You know, there's a 13 year old girl somewhere right now that just thought of the most unique way to prevent child abductions, but people like you make her think that every idea has already been taken, so she doesn't mention the idea to anyone. This JPEG company did help further the JPEG standard. If it didn't, then simply excise the patented section from the JPEG process and it should work just the same.
I'm going to get you, TechDirt. I'm going to expose your patent propoganda if it's the last thing I do!
Patent = +innovation by Stupididness on May 29th, 2006 @ 5:33am
Of course the patent system leads to an increase in innovation. If your product infringes on an existing patent and you can't afford to license it, what do you do? Give up and apply at Subway? No, you think your way around the patent, often times coming up with something better. Microsoft is releasing an alternative to JPEG: the photo member of the Windows Media family. Perhaps they grew tired of the JPEG license fees. Now they've created a better compression system than what JPEG offers (although I'm not sure if they've added transparency and animation capabilities like GIF //fools//). How many keyboards have you had to replace, as your free flowing patent tears splash about while you type? Why not…INNOVATE!…and offer some reasonable suggestions on how to improve the system, one of which is NOT to make it harder to get a patent. I could see shorter protection periods, limits on licensing fees, tax incentives to reduce licenses, free licenses for business that make less than X amount per year. What ideas do you have?
You know, I've been up for 3 days straight, and I'm extremely hungry, yet my Think still runs laps around your Think.