Patently-O Bits and Bytes No. 308

  • Microsoft has released a patch which it believes brings Word 2007 within compliance of the permanent injunction order issued by the court in i4i v. Microsoft.  The patch is “required for the United States” and blocks updated versions of Word from reading “the Custom XML elements contained within DOCX, DOCM, or XML files.” According to the documentation, the DOCX files will continue to open, but any “Custom XML elements will be removed.” The documentation concludes that such custom XML elements are “not typically used by most end users of Word.” [LINK][About i4i v. Microsoft]
  • I recently ran across a blog by Franklin Pierce Law Student Trent Ostler: A Budding Patent Lawyer’s Perspective.
  • BPAI Rules: The USPTO is reconsidering new BPAI briefing rules. I will post more on this in the coming days. Of immediate importance to practitioners is the notice that as of mid-January, all briefs must comply with rules now-in-place.  (This ends a probationary period where the BPAI accepted briefs filed under the not-yet-effective new rules.)
  • BPAI Rules: Find them at 74 FR 67987 [File Attachment: E9-30402.pdf (233 KB)
  • In a December 16, 2009 statement, Rep. John Conyers made a statement on the House Floor in “gratitude for the service of George C. Elliott.”  Elliott spent two years (2007 and 2009) with the Judiciary Committee but is now returning to the USPTO as co-director of TC 1600.

11 thoughts on “Patently-O Bits and Bytes No. 308

  1. 10

    show me the money, just because you are infringing doesn’t mean you are violating the law. Currently you and I are probably infringing a thousand patents every day we boot up our computer. Never the less we are not violating the law.

  2. 9

    Will Microsoft be refunding a portion of the Word purchase price since we paid $x for 100% of the product and now only have access to 90%?

    “custom XML elements are “not typically used by most end users of Word.” I may not use my cigarette lighter in my car, but if Ford said I had to give it back because they didn’t have a license to sell that cigarette lighter, I’d be expecting some $$ or something back from Ford, particularly since they put honest me in a position of violating the law (patent infringer).

  3. 8

    Great quote, Anon but, Wait a minute Mr Kappos. Wasn’t that the sartorial style of the comic figure called Superman. Blue suit worn underneath red underpanties, wasn’t it?

    It worked for him, didn’t it?

  4. 7

    All these new rules and regulations remind me of the Woody Allen movie in which a new dictator ordered that everyone to change their underwear every Tuesday, and to make sure it is done, he further ordered everyone to wear their underwear on the outside of their clothes.

  5. 5

    Not, but that didn’t stop them from issuing a Notice of Non-Compliant Brief because I didn’t use such not yet existing rules….. Among other things, they wanted “mapping” of claims… after complaint about requiring adherence to rules not yet in effect, they relented and allowed mere reference to page and line numbers of the spec as the current rules provide….

  6. 4

    I think this is saying you get to file under the Final (not yet effective) Rule or the current rules up until January 20, 2010. Afterwards, you can only file under the current rules, since the Final (not yet effective) Rule is being re-thought.

    If so, I don’t know why this is of “immediate importance” because I’m not aware of anyone interested in filing under the Final Rule with all of its issues. Has anyone here filed under the Final Rule? If so, why?

  7. 3

    anon – the Federal Register notice that Dennis attached states (on p.2):
    Because the USPTO is now considering the final rule anew, and in light of potential modifications to the final rule, appeal briefs filed on or after January 21, 2010 must comply with the current rules in effect.

  8. 2

    This is typical Microsoft behavior – they try and muck up standards with their own proprietary codes and try and require uses to use their software to view websites, et al, properly. I hope this injunction sticks.

  9. 1

    Dennis: could you please add a link to the notice that (as of mid-January) all briefs must comply with the rules now in place?

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