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[ NNSquad ] Re: Facebook granted patent for social networking "news feeds"
On Sat, Feb 27, 2010 at 3:12 AM, Lauren Weinstein <firstname.lastname@example.org> wrote: > > Facebook granted patent for social networking "news feeds" > > http://bit.ly/9ZtaSN (Computerworld) > > About what we'd expect from the same USPTO > that approved my personal favorite inane patent: > > http://bit.ly/1doZ2q (Patent Storm #5443036) > There are electronic equivalents of the "method of exercising a cat" patent. One is the "fat line" patent granted to IBM. Gary L Reback narrates the absurdity of this patent as follows: IBM's fat line patent: To turn a thin line on a computer screen into a broad line, you go up and down an equal distance from the ends of the thin line and then connect the four points. You probably learned this technique for turning a line into a rectangle in seventh-grade geometry, and, doubtless, you believe it was devised by Euclid or some such 3,000-year-old thinker. Not according to the examiners of the USPTO, who awarded IBM a patent on the process. In his forbes article "Patently Absurd" he narrates an example of the Patent Extortion game http://www.forbes.com/asap/2002/0624/044.html <http://www.forbes.com/asap/2002/0624/044.html>Double-clicking US patent no 6,727,830, granted April 27, 2004 to Microsoft "*A method and system are provided for extending the functionality of application buttons on a limited resource computing device. Alternative application functions are launched based on the length of time an application button is pressed. A default function for an application is launched if the button is pressed for a short, i.e., normal, period of time. An alternative function of the application is launched if the button is pressed for a long, (e.g., at least one second), period of time. Still another function can be launched if the application button is pressed multiple times within a short period of time, e.g., double click. *" http://en.swpat.org/wiki/Example_software_patents#Fat_lines <http://en.swpat.org/wiki/Example_software_patents#Fat_lines>Sivasubramanian Muthusamy. [ For all the talk of "patent reform," there seems to have been little or no effective progress from the situation I described back in 2002 for "Wired" in "Stop the Patent Process Madness" ( http://bit.ly/cYeqEz [ Wired ] ). -- Lauren Weinstein NNSquad Moderator ]