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Re: PJ's in a snit

From: RonB
Subject: Re: PJ's in a snit
Date: Sat, 07 Mar 2009 00:29:17 -0600
User-agent: Opera Mail/9.64 (Linux)

On Fri, 06 Mar 2009 20:47:39 -0600, Rjack <> wrote:

PJ over at Groklaw has gotten her panties tied into a knot over the
Microsoft - TomTom patent dispute.

Seems everybody's in a snit because "Microsoft is attacking Linux".
As I surf the net I see Free Softies everywhere whining about
TomTom not being able to license Microsoft patents because of the
GPL. What baffles me is why there isn't a peep out there about
TomTom suing the pants off other navigation system manufacturers for
violating TomTom's patents.

TomTom Sues Aisin

Dutch navigation device maker TomTom Global Assets BV reportedly has
filed a patent infringement lawsuit against Japan’s Aisin AW and its
subsidiary AW Technical Center U.S.A., according to a report by IP
Law 360. The complaint was filed in the U. S. District Court Eastern
Division of Texas Marshall Division. According to the complaint,
TomTom reportedly alleges that Aisin AW and AW Tech infringe four
U.S. patents (U.S. Patent Nos. 5,508,931; 5,515,283; 5,902,350; and
6,542,814) for car navigation systems and displays. TomTom is
reportedly asserting that Aisin infringed the patents willfully and
is seeking reasonable royalties, damages, interest, and legal costs.
The company is also asking for an injunction. Aisin is a member of
the Toyota group of companies. Aisin’s navigation systems are used
in automobiles manufactured by Toyota, Scion, Audi, and GM in North

See also:

Sounds a little like Rush Limbaugh whining about "personal attacks"
to me. The word "hypocrisy" apparently doesn't exist in Free Softies

Rjack :)

It appears to me that TomTom is suing for very specific issues -- how to display exiting an off ramp on a GPS, for example -- whereas Microsoft is suing for general concepts like "using an integrated computer in a car," or "having a wireless computer in a car," or using the same FAT system everyone else in the world is using. (How did that GIF lawsuit go, by the way?) I don't know the merits of TomTom's lawsuit against the Toyota affiliate (and it looks like they're being counter-sued), but Microsoft's lawsuit looks like nothing more than patent trolling.

Is this what Microsoft has been reduced to? -- a patent troll? I expect they'll be moving their headquarters to Eastern Texas any month now.

"There's a story there...somewhere"

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