Example software patents
- 1 Classes of software patents
- 2 Specific patents
- 3 IBM
- 4 Microsoft
- 5 Apple
- 6 Non-software patents
- 7 Intel
- 8 Other
- 9 Related pages on ESP Wiki
- 10 External links
- 11 References
Classes of software patents
- micro-blogging patents
- audio-video patents
- Webpage and web service patents
- XML patents
- Image processing patents
- Amazon's one-click shopping patent
- Apple Dock
- Apple's slide-to-unlock patent
- Microsoft's FAT patents
- RSA patent
- Rapid Type Analysis
- Stålmarck's algorithm
- Steensgaard's algorithm
- VoloMedia's podcasting patent
Scant details can be found in a Forbes article.
...IBM's notorious "fat lines" 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.
Changing email font colours
For example, an email created in the U.S. in red font to indicate urgency or emphasis might be mapped to a more appropriate color (e.g., blue or black) for sending to Korea.
Synonym replacing email watermarks
- IBM holds patent #4,965,765 which covers the use of different colors to distinguish the nesting level of nested expressions.
- Patent #5,249,290 covers assignment of client requests to the server process having the least load.
- Patent #4,941,125 covers using a digital camera in conjunction with character recognition software to store and index documents on a CD ROM.
Page up, page down
US patent no 7,415,666, granted August 19, 2008.
Title: Method and system for navigating paginated content in page-based increments
A method and system in a document viewer for scrolling a substantially exact increment in a document, such as one page, regardless of whether the zoom is such that some, all or one page is currently being viewed. In one implementation, pressing a Page Down or Page Up keyboard key/button allows a user to begin at any starting vertical location within a page, and navigate to that same location on the next or previous page. For example, if a user is viewing a page starting in a viewing area from the middle of that page and ending at the bottom, a Page Down command will cause the next page to be shown in the viewing area starting at the middle of the next page and ending at the bottom of the next page. Similar behavior occurs when there is more than one column of pages being displayed in a row.
- Patent 7,415,666 from pat2pdf.org
Note: when I put "7,415,666" into Google's patent search, I get some other irrelevant patent
The IsNot operator
- RealBasic developers complain about MS IsNot patent
- About trivial patents: the IsNot case, by Bergstra and Klint
The author of the patent has stated that his strictly personal view, software patents should not exist and that they "generally do much more harm than good".
FAT and shortening filenames
US patent no 6,727,830, granted April 27, 2004 to Microsoft.
Title: Time based hardware button for application launch
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.
Sparklines in grids
These examples are less useful, but they can show the general problems of the patent system.
- "Method of swinging on a swing" This was granted by the US PTO. The "innovation" was that the kid swung sideways instead of back and forth.
- "The wheel", Granted in Australia.
- One-click shopping
The PVR patent
EP1254562, described as a Patent On Digital Video Recording.
EP1170667, described as a patent that would cover Debian's "apt-get" software update tool.
Tabs in applications
US 5,546,528 aka EP 0,689,133.
The progress bar
EP 394160 covers the progress bar.
Some dispute this claim.
2003: SBC Communications is claiming a wide-ranging patent on Web frames.
Charging views by location
Pop-up windows in a webbrowser
- US6,389,458, granted May 14, 2002 (filed October 30, 1998, by Brian Shuster)
Related pages on ESP Wiki
- Silly patents - there's some overlap between this page and that one; must resolve.
- European Patent Office grants software patents
- Amazon's gift ordering patent
- Amazon's one-click shopping patent
In the USA
- Examples of Software Patents
- Eligible Software Patents (click "Show comments" to see the suggestions), 25 September 2014, Patently-O
From many countries
- Wikipedia: List of software patents - organised per domain