Yahoo sends MapQuest packing:

Yahoo said Wednesday that it has stopped using AOL Time Warner online street-finder unit MapQuest and has instead created its own mapping service.
Yahoo’s service, which continues to look and operate like the one powered by MapQuest, is built on data providecnd by Navigation Technologies, Geographic Data Technology, and software application providers Telcontar and Sagent Technology.

Jon’s Radio: “How do they do it? My theory: less time spent in meetings.”

ROFLMAO

At one time, SBC was intending to migrate their members’ personal home pages to our servers. Why didn’t it happen? I was only involved for six months, but the project had gone nowhere for 18 months before that: meetings, staff changes, more meetings, more staff changes, more meetings, and no deliveries.

I wonder how long will it take for SBC to migrate to Yahoo.

Andrew Sullivan: In fact, I’d argue, blogs could well be a milestone in the long history of journalism. By empowering individual writers, by reducing the costs of entry into publishing to close to zero, the blog revolution has only begun to transform the media world.

 

To write, the costs of entry are low, as soon as you become literate. To publish, however, the costs were high: ink, paper, and distribution. And so relatively few published. Now, the challenge is not to be published, but to be read.

BBC News | DOT LIFE | Why BT claims it owns the right to ‘click here’

A stronger case could be made if the defence could prove the patent was invalid because the invention was not original. Here Prodigy has a killer piece of evidence up its sleeve.

Prodigy’s unlikely saviour comes in the form of a fuzzy black and white video which shows a 1968 demonstration by Stanford computer researcher Douglas Engelbart apparently demonstrating hypertext linking.

 

Here’s the filed complaint.

Joel on Software:

When software companies say that “their capital assets go home every night,” they are serious. Dead serious. And when Quark goes down in flames because the bean-counters pushed out the experienced developers and hired new, cheaper ones 10 time zones away, there will be a great case study in Harvard Business Review to prove it.

The same applies to Internet Service Providers. It’s uncertain at this point whether anyone at SBC knows this.

Laid-off techies invoke old law – Tech News – CNET.com: [The WARN Act] requires companies with more than 100 workers to give employees at least 60 days notice of a plant closing or mass layoffs. A plant closing is defined as the shutdown of a single site in which 50 or more employees lose their jobs. Mass layoffs occur when a company lets go 500 workers over 30 days, or 33 percent of the work force, if that means at least 50 people.

FCC News Release: FCC PROPOSES $6 MILLION FINE AGAINST SBC COMMUNICATIONS, INC. In approving the license transfers, the Commission required SBC to offer the shared transport unbundled network element in the former Ameritech states on terms at least as favorable as those offered to telecommunications carriers in Texas as of August 27, 1999. In today’s Notice, the Commission found that SBC appears to have violated this condition in each of the five former Ameritech states by attempting to restrict the use of shared transport by carriers providing intraLATA toll service. The $6 million fine proposed by the Commission is the statutory maximum for the five apparent violations (one in each of the former Ameritech states).

We’ve been sued.

BT, Prodigy U.S. hyperlink patent trial date set: BT owns what it calls the Hidden Page patent, which was filed in the U.S. in 1976, granted in 1989 and isn’t due to expire until 2006, giving the company the intellectual property rights to hyperlink technology. Hyperlinks connect text, images, and other data on the Internet in such a way as to allow a user to click on a highlighted object on a Web page in order to bring up an associated item contained elsewhere on the Web.

 

As far as I can tell, this patent applies just as well to symbolic links in the UNIX filesystem, Mac OS aliases, Windows shortcuts, anything written in Hypercard, anything with a GUI, menu-driven programs (smit, for example), an index, a b-tree, a detour sign, a table of contents in a printed book — or even a Socratic dialogue, which reveals the argument through questions.

To patent this is absurd.