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Comment Re:Patent Lifespan? (Score 1) 326

Since the application for the patent was filed before 1995, the lifespan of the patent is 17 past the grant date of the patent. And the patents was granted in 1998. So it should expire until 2015.

The other patent on the case was filed in 2002 and granted in 2009, so it'll expire in 2022. (starting in 1995 patents expired 20 years past the application date).

Comment Re:Kids, this is what we call a "submarine patent" (Score 2) 326

IIRC a submarine patent is a bit more involved than that.

1. File Patent Application.
2. Wait a while.
3. Submit something that delays the Application process.
4. Repeat 2-3 until you decide its time to let your Patent be Granted.
5. Profit.

What the PTO did to combat this is starting in 1995(?) they changed it where the life of the patent is 20 years past the application date, instead of 17 years past the grant date.

Comment The lawsuit isn't exactly "new" (Score 1) 326

The lawsuit was filed Oct 06th, 2009.
There are two patents on the case.
US Patent No. 5838906
Filing Date 1994-10-17
Grant Date 1998-11-17
US Patent No. 7599985
Filing Date 2002-08-09
Grant Date 2009-10-06

Clearly the second one was the one that they were waiting on to sue people over.

Comment Re:OR (Score 1) 163

That is my favorite part about astronomy. "We think there is a planet there because the star is somewhat blocked regularly" Maybe its just an alien in a space ship somewhere in-between Earth and that star, and every so often he sorta blocks out that star and giggles to himself about how crazy the Earthlings must be going thinking that there is a planet there.

The Wright Bothers weren't the first to fly. They were just the first not to crash.