Sunday, December 28th 2008

Cygnus Systems Sues Google, Microsoft and Apple Over Preview Icons

It appears that Networking company Cygnus Systems has found the best Christmas present for Google, Microsoft, and Apple. Miracles happen, and Cygnus is now suing the three companies for violating its patent (US 7,346,850) on the use of document-preview icons or thumbnails as we know them in operating systems. Matt McAndrews, representative of Cygnus, said: "They were a logical starting place for us." He also added: "We've identified many other potentially infringing products that we're investigating."
In the suit, Cygnus Systems targets Google's Chrome, Microsoft's Vista and Internet Explorer 8, and Apple's iPhone, Safari, and Mac OS X as patent infringers. The case was filed in U.S. District Court in Arizona. The company is looking for compensation and a court injunction preventing further infringement of their patent. Responses from Google, Microsoft and Apple are still expected.Source: CNET News
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32 Comments on Cygnus Systems Sues Google, Microsoft and Apple Over Preview Icons

#2
Dark_Webster
Oh god, don't we love US patents? :laugh::laugh:
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#3
Mussels
Moderprator
sigh.

Double sigh. i mean really. they could have sued back when thumbnail previews were... oh, NEW?
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#4
DaMulta
My stars went supernova
by: Mussels
sigh.

Double sigh. i mean really. they could have sued back when thumbnail previews were... oh, NEW?
Then you get no money. That would be dumb business:rolleyes:
Posted on Reply
#5
FordGT90Concept
"I go fast!1!11!1!"
Thumbnails for images goes back to at least XP which came out in 2001 and perhaps even farther back than that. They're trying to claim intellectual property that has clearly been "public domain" for over seven years. If they really wanted to pick that fight, they would have had to of done it at least five years ago. They're wasting their time and money.
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#6
DaMulta
My stars went supernova
Apple could do it with all icons if they wanted too.
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#7
lemonadesoda
I do hate the abuse of the US patent system.

The only way this can be resolved is to introduce a legal precedent which is to SUE the patent pretender for THEFT. Yes, they are trying to own patent rights on something they didnt invent, and should therefore be served with criminal proceedings for theft or attempted theft. Only then will we put a stop to this nonsense.

I remember having something (similar) to this back in 1984 on a 6502 based system. This even predates DOS and Windows.
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#8
hat
Maximum Overclocker
Gee, shouldn't they have done this back then thumbnails first came out? So I guess if someone breaks into my appt. and steals my computer, I should sue him like 10 years later, right?

This is really retarded. I hate to stand up for the big dogs like Microshaft, Booble, and Crapple, but I think they would have had a better case about 7 years ago.
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#9
Morgoth
may the best idiot win
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#10
Kenshai
From reading it, it almost sounds like it's just the Folder Preview stuff. Like seeing multiple images on the icon for a folder. Stupid enough though.
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#11
silkstone
I'm guessing that someone was slack, didn't file a patent, and now this company has patented it and wan't some money. Sounds like the russian business man who has patented the :-) symbol.
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#12
MopeyMartian
Looks like it'd be in my best interest to patent something so vague that I can sue every US based company for taking my idea. Even if the suits settle out of court I'll be a gazillionare. :toast:
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#13
ShinyG
The reason they didn't sue as soon as the mentioned OS/programs came out is that they couldn't have asked for any damages because said OS/programs did not make any profit! What they do is wait a couple of years for the OSes/programs to sell and then ask for copyright infringement damages based on how much these sold!
Pretty cheeky if you ask me...
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#14
3870x2
if most of you guys dont know, it goes deeper than this, down to the algorithms with which it was programmed, not the visible aspect that we see as folder thumbnails.
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#15
Black Hades
by: 3870x2
if most of you guys dont know, it goes deeper than this, down to the algorithms with which it was programmed, not the visible aspect that we see as folder thumbnails.
I imagined that much. But imagine this... how (and why) can you patent a few math equations? I mean there should be a limit to this patent system.
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#16
silkstone
You'd hope so, if it was just a patent for the concept, then they wouldn't have a leg to stand on. I like to see the bigboys getting hit with lawsuits and not the other way round.
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#17
FordGT90Concept
"I go fast!1!11!1!"
by: ShinyG
The reason they didn't sue as soon as the mentioned OS/programs came out is that they couldn't have asked for any damages because said OS/programs did not make any profit! What they do is wait a couple of years for the OSes/programs to sell and then ask for copyright infringement damages based on how much these sold!
Pretty cheeky if you ask me...
They can't do that because the courts would rule the content as being public domain. If there is infringement upon your patent and you know about it, you have to fight it as soon as possible. If you wait, you have to prove beyond reasonable doubt that you were completely unaware of the infringement and, unless they lived in confinement for the past seven years, they can't prove that. If they in fact can't prove they were unaware of the infringement, then the courts consider it as public domain and the patent is void.
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#18
mrw1986
I hope that company crashes and burns in a fantastic fire.
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#19
silkstone
by: Black Hades
I imagined that much. But imagine this... how (and why) can you patent a few math equations? I mean there should be a limit to this patent system.
Depends on the application of the equations really. If they're fundemental laws of physics then they can't be patented (although if i could patent the power law i would own the world :) ). But if they're designed for a specific use then they can be, it takes a serious amount of intellectual work and creative skill to create an equation, like a recipe or work of art, so why not?
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#20
FordGT90Concept
"I go fast!1!11!1!"
But, you have to prove that they had prior knowledge of your application in order for a patent infringement to occur. If two entities make the same equation without knowledge of the other, it isn't infringement. ;)
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#21
silkstone
by: FordGT90Concept
But, you have to prove that they had prior knowledge of your application in order for a patent infringement to occur. If two entities make the same equation without knowledge of the other, it isn't infringement. ;)
Innocent until proven guilty or is ignorance no excuse in the eyes of the law? I know little about patent law, but i'm sure they'd have a pretty solid case b4 going up against the "bigboys"
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#23
WarEagleAU
Bird of Prey
Surely they dont expect them to halt using the previews, that would just be retarded. If it truly does infringe they need to work out a licensing deal.
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#24
pentastar111
by: WarEagleAU
Surely they dont expect them to halt using the previews, that would just be retarded. If it truly does infringe they need to work out a licensing deal.
+1 for that.
Posted on Reply
#25
eidairaman1
by: WarEagleAU
Surely they dont expect them to halt using the previews, that would just be retarded. If it truly does infringe they need to work out a licensing deal.
all they are doing is trying to sue them so they can get money so they dont go out of business is all, look at all the previous civil suits. Most of these Patent Infringement cases are frivilous.
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