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.
Minnesota looks into switch of Qwest DSL users The state Commerce Department is investigating whether tens of thousands of Minnesotans have been treated fairly in the switch of Qwest high-speed Internet access customers to Microsoft’s MSN online service.
I would not be too surprised if something like this happens during the transfer of services from SBC Prodigy to Yahoo!
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).
When you read a book, does what you read remind you of other things that aren’t there?
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.
Group sues Pacific Bell over Net service – CNET.com “‘In fact, most consumers had not authorized or consented for Prodigy to bill them for such services,’ the lawsuit alleges, asking the judge to order SBC to cease the practice and refund consumer money.”
I have the Last Mile Problem, or, rather, the last 1500 feet problem.
It remains possible that the status quo ante bellum will continue after the migrations. But perhaps Chicken Little was right.
Later, c|net got around to analyzing the announcement. I wonder what perspective Yahoo and SBC staff have on this.
I found a blogger from SBC, and one, two from Yahoo!
Yeee-haaww!, or as they say “Yahoo!”
OK. So OEMs can bundle AOL now. Fat lot of good that will do. Looks like Illegal Monopolist Microsoft got away with both prizes.
It’s interesting the things you find out just by reading the news.
Get your TiVo while it’s hot. Those crazy TV networks are getting confused about fair use again.
In 1996, I taught a class for Associated Press on using Windows 95. Some class members thought that Microsoft was the Internet. There was no distinction between Windows 95, Internet Explorer, MSN, and the other websites. It was all Microsoft.
“How can I access the Microsoft?”
This just solidifies that. Go Microsoft yourself.
Guess the cost of those Windows licenses started getting to them. 🙂