Microsoft Files Application on Digital Art Program

Recently, we took a look at some recent Microsoft Xbox patents over at IPWatchdog as a part of our “Companies We Follow” series. In doing our research, we noticed an interesting innovation related to Microsoft’s digital art programs, which is included in most versions of its computer operating systems, such as Windows. This digital paint program includes more dynamic functions for the artist’s palette, such as a more realistic experience involving oil paints and worn-out brushes.

The application is U.S. Patent Application No. 20130326381, which is titled Digital Art Program Interaction and Mechanisms.

Digital applications for creating art have long been found on computing devices. From basic programs that offer the ability to draw straight lines with a mouse, to applications for mobile devices that respond to user touch through a touchscreen, digital art programs on consumer devices have greatly increased in capability during recent years. Today, graphic designers and artists are capable of using computer software to create intricate images that achieve many of the same aesthetic effects of actual paints or other materials.


Facebook Continues to Load Its Patent Arsenal

The patent wars are all the rage amongst tech companies these days. Not too long ago, Microsoft Corp. made news when announcing it purchased approximately 925 patents from AOL, Inc. for an estimated $1.1 billion dollars. The commentary regarding that purchase was equally focused on the impressive sale price for the amount of patents purchased as it was on the fact that tech companies are looking twice at their patent portfolios as litigation and licensing tools.

The latest development is that Facebook, who is currently in a patent infringement battle with Yahoo, recently purchased 650 of the AOL patents from Microsoft for an estimated $550 million dollars. This recent acquisition comes just one month after Facebook purchased 750 patents from IBM. (more…)

Microsoft v. i4i Revisited

Written by Brandon Baum , of baum legal and Practice Center Contributor.

I recently commented that the Microsoft v. i4i case did not change the law. After all, the Supreme Court simply confirmed that the statutory presumption of validity afforded patents under 35 U.S.C. 282 could only be overcome with “clear and convincing evidence” of invalidity — nothing new. However, upon a more careful reading (prompted by a Facebook post by Fordham Prof. Jeanne Fromer), I now realize I was mistaken.

In the following passage, the Supreme Court explains that a patent provides the user with a “right to use” the patented invention, and not merely the right to exclude others from using the patented invention.














That changes everything, and will make patents ever so much more valuable. By the stroke of a pen, the wealth of America’s inventors has been vastly increased. I sure hope they don’t try to “fix” this.



Microsoft v. i4i – The Supreme Court Keeps the Clear and Convincing Standard

In the Microsoft Corp. v. i4i, the Supreme Court had to determine whether the burden of proof for parties alleging patent invalidity should be changed from a clear and convincing standard to a preponderance of the evidence standard.  Yesterday, the Court unanimously decided no!!  Garth M. Dahlen, Ph.D., Partner at Birch, Stewart, Kolasch & Birch, LLP, sent in this article discussing  the decision and possible ramifications.

Yesterday in Microsoft v. i4i __ U.S. __ (2011)(Sotomayor, J.), opinion below, i4i Ltd. v. Microsoft Corp., 589 F.3d 1246 (Fed. Cir. 2009)(Prost, J.), the Supreme Court gave a unanimous decision affirming the Federal Circuit’s interpretation of 35 U.S.C. §282 requiring clear and convincing evidence for an invalidity defense.

The statute at issue was 35 U.S.C. §282 which states:

A patent shall be presumed valid…. The burden of establishing invalidity of a patent or any claim thereof shall rest on the party asserting such invalidity. (more…)

Apple v. Samsung: “Look and feel” redux? Not quite.

Written by Brandon Baum , of baum legal and Practice Center Contributor.

It is part of the IP zeitgeist that Apple sued Microsoft for copying Apple’s “look and feel” in Windows 3.0 and lost. That is not really the case, as the issues were more complicated and nuanced than that. But that story is for another post.

Some have asked whether Apple is again asserting its failed “look and feel” argument against Samsung in its recently filed lawsuit. Let’s have a look.

Apple does claim that Samsung’s Galaxy S i9000 smartphone copies the “trade dress” of the iPhone 3G. (See excerpt of complaint below). (more…)