hudgeon,microsoft word heading paragraph example,0013 microsoft word,christmas paragraph examples,christmas sample microsoft word,example of an definition paragraph,example of microsoft word,how microsoft word utilizes xml,hint element,ms word christmas headings, xml%%%hudgeon - RE: Microsoft files for XML patents, says C

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RE: Microsoft files for XML patents, says C|Net

Hi Rex,

It's probably not that serious. I'd say it's unlikely that this patent will
be granted and I'd be willing to bet that there are at least a 1/2 dozen
members of this list who could lay claim to some prior art. (See the bottom
paragraph for my layman's description of potential prior art).


-----Original Message-----
From: Rex Brooks [mailto:rexb@s...] 
Sent: Sunday, 25 January 2004 11:03 AM
To: Doug Hudgeon; 'Rex Brooks'
Cc: xml-dev@l...
Subject: RE:  Microsoft files for XML patents, says C|Net

I just responded to Bob Wyman's reply. You both have more experience 
and insight into this than I, and this appears to be a more 
potentially damaging development than I thought.


--------In response to--------

At 8:05 AM +1100 1/25/04, Doug Hudgeon wrote:

>The MS patent application can be read narrowly or broadly. I think even 
>the narrow interpretation would preclude the community converter for 
>word processing documents.
>Here's how the patent application looks from the perspective of a 
>person who wants to build a community converter to read, parse and do 
>something to a MS Word document.
>The broadest claim in the patent is, as always, the first:
>"A computer-readable medium having computer-executable components,
>a first component for reading a word-processor document stored as a 
>single XML file; a second component that utilizes an XSD for 
>interpreting the word-processor document, and a third component for 
>performing an action on the word-processor document."
>This does not apply only to MS Word documents but to all 
>word-processing documents. However, Microsoft cannot seriously believe 
>that this claim will have no prior art unless the term "word processor 
>document" is restricted in meaning (otherwise a web browser displaying HTML
could be prior art):
>So what is a Word-processor document? Interestingly, the term is not 
>defined explicitly but, instead, is defined as an example in the 
>definition of "markup language":
>"[0013] The terms "markup language" or "ML" refer to a language for 
>special codes within a document that specify how parts of the document 
>are to be interpreted by an application. In a word-processor file, the 
>markup language specifies how the text is to be formatted or laid out, 
>whereas in an HTML document, the ML tends to specify the text's 
>structural function (e.g., heading, paragraph, etc.)"
>This specifically restricts WPML to formatting markup and apparently 
>restricts the scope of the patent to the display of text rather than to 
>the structural function of the text (although I'm not sure where they 
>draw the line between "laid out" and an element's structural function).
>Here's what their sample document looks like:
>It's all pretty clear to this point and if the patent is granted the 
>community converter would be in breach. But the patent application 
>seems to encompass more than the display of the word-processing documents:
>Despite the title, "word processing document stored in a single xml 
>file", the patent contains the concept of a "hint" which seems to allow 
>some types of information to be stored outside the "single XML file". 
>The following paragraph describes a "hint".
>[0047] Other information may also be included within the document that 
>is not needed by the word-processing program. According to one 
>embodiment of the invention a "hints" element is included that allows 
>external programs to easily be able to recognize what a particular 
>element is, or how to recreate the element. For example, a specific 
>number format may be in a list and used by the external program to 
>recreate the document without knowing the specifics of the style.
>Now, despite the above example of a hint as a mechanism to specify the 
>format of a number in a list, claim 24 describes a hint as:
>"The schema of Claim 23, further comprising a hints element, wherein 
>the hints element may be used to indicate a meaning for an item."
>Note the use of the term "meaning".
>Read broadly, Microsoft's intent may be to restrict competitors from 
>not only displaying word processor files identically to MS Word, but 
>also to stop competitors from using the "hints" to extract meaningful 
>data from the text elements. So it may be that not only would the 
>community converter be in breach of the patent, but the community 
>archival and retrieval system may also breach.
>Now, I am not a patent lawyer, but it seems to me the prior art would 
>need to be a processor of a marked up document based on a schema 
>(preferably XSD) containing formatting instructions surrounding a 
>single tag element containing the text of the document. Optionally, 
>this document could refer to additional files containing further 
>information about the elements in the original document.


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