RE: Prior Art For Microsoft's XUL Patent Wanted
Oh yes, I'll be the first to admit that MID wasn't novel. I had Hytime running out my ears at that point, had worked on other hypertext systems (IADS, IDE/AS, the GE ETMs for CASS) and did my homework researching AI systems, NLDS and chaos theories, linguistics, and so on. I didn't know about PIGUI. The first MID came down to the definition of a view package, familiarity with midi sequencers, and opening up the Win 3.1 resource file (that was what MS should have patented but I'm sure it seemed silly at the time). So when I sat down with Neill Kipp to explain what I had in mind for MID I, his response was, "Oh, you mean these ARE the objects?!? That should work." In other words, MID was a bit of synthesis, not innovation. No d'oh. But because we implemented it, published it and that stuff has been out there for a decade now, it is part of the prior art documentation that secures the future. That alone made it worthwhile, IMO. The hard sell was the MID committee themselves who were committed to a much grander concept, but I had a customer with a deadline and Charles had tutored me on getting it done. ISMID reflects more of the advanced bits from Hytime. ISO ISMID is Dave Cooper's work because I changed jobs at that point. Not oddly, when MID was being discussed on comp-text-sgml at the time, the W3C guys, the new SGML to HTML converts and others were blasting holes in it. What goes around comes around. Keep it in mind when people come to this list with ideas that may conflict with current agendas. Document it. Document it. Document it. Prior art is part of due diligence. It seems people are skipping that part of the patenting process these days. There is a gold rush on and claim jumping seems to be in heavy revival, but now as in the WWWest and the Klondike, he with the gold rules. That I suspect is why the W3C is finally facing up to the facts and amassing legal defense funds. 'bout time too. Yeah, the plagiarism is massive. Blog keiretsu, accepting behaviors from Google that would get Gates put in jail, open source claiming special status while IBM and others make billions off it, all of the Spy Vs Spy games, are 'life among the mammals' behaviors. I don't despair. We've been doing this stuff for at least 10k years. "CROG! You copied my buffalo!" reverberates from the cave to the cubicle. ;-) len From: Gavin Thomas Nicol [mailto:gtn@r...] On Wednesday 17 December 2003 01:59 pm, you wrote: > I was surprised as I looked into inductive interfaces > to see MS mystified that they had not originated > the idea given any mil tech writer's experience > with the LSAR records for repair procedures and > that background informed MID design. This stuff > just isn't rocket science. ... and the MID stuff itself is really a crystallisation of various themes running around at the time, from some of the PIGUI work, through to HyTime (albeit, one of the most advanced, in a number of directions, to the point that it's still fairly advanced). Last time I checked (maybe 6 months ago), there were over 300 patents or patent applications with the word XML in the title. Think about that.... I personally have seen very, very little, that I think is new since 1994 or so, so almost every one of those 300 will have significant prior art. Prior art alone is *not* sufficient for have a patent deemed invalid though, and that is at least part of the problem. > The EOLAS patent is generating defensive patenting > elsewhere. Well, there are a lot of factors here too. One factor is plagiarism.... it has become so common for people (both commercial and open-source) to replicate any new idea, that people are trying to find ways to protect their innovations (and many innovations come from small companies... which are least capable of defending themselves). Patents are one of the options people have (though not an inexpensive one, so again, individuals and small companies suffer). It's pretty clear the software industry is undergoing a great deal of change vis-a-vis IP etc. Whether we all end up as consultants supporting open source (be that salaried or independent), or swallowed by the behemoths is an open question.
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