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Patents

Patent Claim Could Block Import of Toyota's Hybrid Cars 451

JynxMe writes "Paice is a tiny Florida company that has patented a way to apply force to a car's wheels from an electric motor or internal combustion engine. Paice thinks that Toyota is infringing on its technology, and is going after the automaker in court. The legal spat became much more serious for Toyota this week, when the US International Trade Commission decided to investigate the matter. In the worst-case scenario for Toyota, the commission could ban the hybrid Camry, third-generation Prius, Lexus HS250h sedan and Lexus RX450h SUV."
The Internet

Lawyer Puts $10k Bounty on Blogger's Identity 286

I Don't Believe in Imaginary Property writes "Raymond Niro of Niro Scavone Haller & Niro is fighting back against criticism from the Patent Troll Tracker blog by offering a $10,000 bounty for the identity of the person behind it. He thinks the blogger might work for Microsoft, Intel, or has connections to a 'serial infringer' and that could 'color' what they say."
Patents

Smartphones Patented — Just About Everyone Sued 1 Minute Later 407

This week the US Patent and Trademark Office issued a surprisingly (although I guess it shouldn't be) broad patent for a "mobile entertainment and communication device". Upon closer inspection you may notice that it pretty much outlines the ubiquitous smartphone concept. "It's a patent for a mobile phone with removable storage, an internet connection, a camera and the ability to download audio or video files. The patent holding firm who has the rights to this patent wasted no time at all. At 12:01am Tuesday morning, it filed three separate lawsuits against just about everyone you can think of, including Apple, Nokia, RIM, Sprint, ATT, HP, Motorola, Helio, HTC, Sony Ericsson, UTStarcomm, Samsung and a bunch of others. Amusingly, the company actually first filed the lawsuits on Monday, but realized it was jumping the gun and pulled them, only to refile just past the stroke of midnight. "
Patents

22 Companies Sued Over Wi-Fi Patents 219

Newer Guy writes "Wi-LAN, another patent holding company, has sued 22 companies that make or sell wireless routers. Defendants include Apple. Atheros, Belkin, Best Buy, Buffalo, Dell, HP, Intel, and Lenovo. Wi-LAN has a portfolio of more than 280 issued or pending patents." Of course the two patent suits were filed in Marshall, Texas.
Patents

Amazon Patents Including a String at End of a URL 306

theodp writes "On Tuesday, Amazon search subsidiary A9.com was awarded U.S. patent no. 7,287,042 for 'including a search string at the end of a URL without any special formatting.' In the Summary of the Invention, it's explained that 'a user wishing to search for 'San Francisco Hotels' may do by simply accessing the URL www.domain_name/San Francisco Hotels, where domain_name is a domain name associated with the web site system.' Here's the flowchart that helped cinch the deal."
Sony

Firm Sues Sony Over Cell Processor 330

An anonymous reader writes that earlier this month, Sony received word of a lawsuit from a Newport Beach company called Parallel Processing. They've filed against the electronics giant alleging that the Cell processor, used in the PlayStation 3, infringes on a patent they own. They've made the somewhat outrageous demand that every infringing chip (and console) be 'impounded and destroyed'. From the article at Next Generation: "The patent, 'Synchronized Parallel Processing with Shared Memory' was issued in October 1991. It describes a high-speed computer that breaks down a program 'into smaller concurrent processes running in different parallel processors' and resynchronizes the program for faster processing times ... Parallel Processing said that Sony's alleged actions have caused 'irreparable harm and monetary damage' to the company."

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