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Comment Re:Sounds like a lawsuit waiting to happen (Score 5, Insightful) 448

Why Paypal?

The last four digits of your credit card are printed on pretty much every receipt, shown on every order confirmation page, every "My account saved credit cards" screen, and are usually shown in addition to an expiration date. That's information that's never been considered confidential - quite the opposite indeed. It's pretty much public information.

GoDaddy was insane to consider it valid authentication information. You might just as well treat someone's name as their password.

Comment Re:Suicide (Score 1) 142

I guess it depends on whose rules you're following. On a legal level, no, it's not misbehaving.

On the other hand, when you (or rather the company you've taken over) declares that, henceforth, Solaris shall be thought of as an open source operating system, and promotes the fact it's open source, and nearly a decade later you're finding legal loopholes the company you took over left in place, that you're using in order to sue people who treat it as one, then you're not exactly playing the rules you (or Sun) declared you were playing by.

Comment Re:Tin foil hat time (Score 1) 330

as their assets and paychecks are denominated in DOLLARS as opposed to HOLDINGS

Our paychecks generally rise with or close to Inflation. Our assets comprise of holdings, like houses, cars, etc, and debts, which are denominated in dollars. We benefit when our debts reduce in value.

Very, very, few people have significant numbers of actual dollars just lying around, uninvested. So you're about 100% wrong.

Comment Re:Tin foil hat time (Score 1) 330

The lenders aren't going to withdraw, and there's this little concept called "interest" you appear to be ignoring that serves multiple functions, including handling defaults and encouraging investment.

But in any case, anyone who proposes a particular currency's purpose is to get away from fractional reserve banking doesn't know what FRB is or why it exists. In particular, it serves the opposite function of what you think. Because the alternative to FRB is not 100% backed loans, it's near 0%.

FRB exists because of accounting. If I create a loan for you of $100, I have an agreement that means you'll pay me $100 plus interest, and you have access to $100 that you didn't have before. If I'm a bank, there might even be no money changing hands initially.

That agreement that I hold is worth something. That is to say, I can sell it to someone. Usually it's worth something along the lines of $(1-RISK) * (100 + interest payments). So by loaning you $100, I'm not out $100, in fact, I may be worth more than I was before I made you the loan, even though you haven't paid it yet.

You can fight this and say it's not fair, and it's double counting, and all kinds of things, but it's true, objectively true. You made a loan agreement with me, and people are willing to buy that agreement, so the agreement is worth more to me than the cash was, so my net worth immediately increased, rather than decreased, when I lended you cash. There's no getting around that. No system of accounting, economics, or mathematics, will prevent that loan document from being worth money.

The only problem is that sometimes there are bank runs, so we force banks, whose main business is making loans, to have a lot of cash on hand to cover for the fact that most of their value is tied up in IOUs from their debtors. That's called a reserve. And it's a fraction of the reserve needed.

We can, if you like, force the "fraction" to be 100%, but that's not going to work. Banks will be unable to lend to anyone at anything other than absurdly high interest rates, so instead we'll go to less regulated sources of loans like the bond market. I'll close my bank and instead buy a $100 bond from you that pays interest, and maybe I'll sell that bond to someone else. And if that looks exactly like the situation we just had, well, that's because it is, except that there's no reserve any more.

I guess you could also outlaw bonds. And then I guess loans altogether. And then money ;-)

Comment Re:Doesn't scratch any itches (Score 1) 330

Cheaper because you don't have to pay money transfer fees

Cobblers. This keeps coming up and it's completely untrue. To transfer money from one person to another, the money needs to be in a currency that both parties accept. Typically (as in, always) this is whatever currency taxes are paid in, food is bought with, a bank accepts for mortgage costs and/or a landlord accepts for rent payment, utilities accept for service payments, and transportation infrastructure providers (be they energy, vehicle, or whole shebang) accepts for products and services rendered. It is also the currency wages are paid in.

As there is no country in the world as yet where Bitcoins are paid out or accepted by all or even most of these entities, the sending entity MUST convert your cash into Bitcoins to initiate a transfer, and the receiving entity MUST convert the Bitcoins back into cash at the end of the transfer. Both transactions result in a fee. The fee is lower than that charged for some transactions, but higher than charged for other types of transactions, when compared to a straight single currency cash transfer. (And don't even get me started on the uncertainty involved where you have no way of knowing whether youi'll even be able to convert the received # Bitcoins into the same number of $ORIGINAL_CURRENCY as sent.)

The same points can be made about transaction times and other supposed advantages of Real currency->Bitcoin->Real currency type transfers.

For real people, in the real world, engaged in legitimate transactions, Bitcoins are a terrible way to conduct business.

Comment Re:1 edge (Score 0) 64

Samsung hasn't been "patent trolling", it's been asking Apple to pay for its FRAND patents, and Apple's been refusing because it doesn't like the terms.

The EU's response has been dubious at best.

{{prose|date=February 2013}}
The '''smartphone wars''' or '''smartphone patents licensing and litigation''' is an ongoing business battle by [[smartphone]] manufacturers including [[Sony]], [[Google]], [[Apple Inc.]], [[Samsung]], [[Microsoft]], [[Nokia]], [[Motorola]], and [[HTC]], among others, in [[Patent infringement|patent litigation]]. The conflict is part of the [[Technology patent wars|wider "patent wars"]] between multinational technology and software corporations.

To secure and increase their [[market share]], companies granted a [[patent]] can sue to prevent competitors from using the methods the patent covers. Since 2010 the number of lawsuits, counter-suits, and trade complaints based on patents and [[Industrial design right|designs]] in the market for smartphones, and devices based on [[Mobile operating system|smartphone OSes]] such as [[Android (operating system)|Android]] and [[iOS]], has increased significantly.

Initial suits, countersuits, rulings, licence agreements, and other major events in ''italics'':<ref>{{cite web |author=Florian Mueller |url= |title=Apple vs Android 10.12.02 |accessdate=September 8, 2011}}</ref><ref>{{cite web |author=Florian Mueller |url= |title=NokiaVsApple_11.03.31.100 |accessdate=September 8, 2011}}</ref><ref>{{cite web |author=Florian Mueller |url= |title=Microsoft vs Motorola 11.04.09
|accessdate=September 8, 2011}}</ref><ref>{{cite web |author=Florian Mueller |url= |title=AppleVsSamsung_11.07.05 |accessdate=September 8, 2011}}</ref><ref>{{cite web |author=Florian Mueller |url= |title=AppleVsHTCandS3_11.07.29 |accessdate=September 8, 2011}}</ref>

The pattern of suing and countersuing really began in 2009 as the smartphone market grew more rapidly.
* 2009, Oct 22: ''Nokia sues Apple over 10 patents.''<ref>{{cite web|url= |title=Nokia sues Apple over iPhone's use of patented wireless standards | |date=October 22, 2009 |accessdate=January 5, 2012}}</ref><ref>{{cite web|url= |title=Nokia vs. Apple: the in-depth analysis | |date= |accessdate=January 5, 2012}}</ref>
* 2009, Dec 11: ''Apple countersues Nokia over 13 patents.''<ref>{{cite web|url= |title=Apple countersues Nokia for infringing 13 patents | |date= |accessdate=January 5, 2012}}</ref>
* 2009, Dec 29: Nokia files a second lawsuit<ref>{{cite web|last=Foresman |first=Chris |url= |title=Nokia adds additional lawsuit in patent catfight with Apple | |date=January 4, 2010 |accessdate=January 5, 2012}}</ref> and a [[United States International Trade Commission|U.S. International Trade Commission (ITC)]] complaint against Apple over 7 more patents.<ref>{{cite web|last=Foresman |first=Chris |url= |title=Nokia hurls new salvo in spat with Apple, complains to ITC | |date=December 29, 2009 |accessdate=January 5, 2012}}</ref>

* 2010, Jan 15: Apple files an ITC complaint against Nokia over 9 patents.<ref>{{cite news|last=Decker |first=Susan |url= |title=Apple Files New Trade Complaint With Against Nokia | |date=January 16, 2010 |accessdate=January 5, 2012}}</ref><ref>{{cite web|last=Cheng |first=Jacqui |url= |title=Apple wants Nokia's US imports blocked | |date=January 18, 2010 |accessdate=January 5, 2012}}</ref>
* 2010, Feb 19: Apple drops 4 patents from their countersuit against Nokia that are in their ITC complaint against Nokia.
* 2010, Feb 24: Apple countersues Nokia in Nokia's second lawsuit, over the 9 patents that are in Apple's ITC complaint.
* 2010, Mar 02: ''Apple sues HTC over 10 patents and files an ITC complaint against HTC over 10 other patents.''<ref>{{cite web|url= |title=Apple vs HTC: a patent breakdown | |date=March 2, 2010 |accessdate=January 5, 2012}}</ref><ref>{{cite web|url= |title=Google backs HTC in what could be 'long and bloody battle' with Apple | |date=March 3, 2010 |accessdate=January 5, 2012}}</ref><ref>{{cite news|last=Bilton |first=Nick |url= |title=What Apple vs. HTC Could Mean | |date=March 2, 2010 |accessdate=January 5, 2012}}</ref><ref>{{cite web|url= |title=HTC says it uses own technology, not Apple's | |date= |accessdate=January 5, 2012}}</ref><ref>{{cite web|last=Foresman |first=Chris |url= |title=HTC lawsuit came after warning by Apple to handset makers | |date=March 9, 2010 |accessdate=January 5, 2012}}</ref>
* 2010, Apr 26: 5 of the patents in Apple's ITC complaint against Nokia are merged into their ITC complaint against HTC.
* 2010, Apr 27: ''HTC signs an agreement with Microsoft to licence Microsoft patents in return for royalties on HTC's Android-based devices''<ref>{{cite web|url= |title=Microsoft Announces Patent Agreement With HTC | |date=April 27, 2010 |accessdate=January 5, 2012}}</ref><ref>{{cite web|url= |title=HTC licenses Microsoft&#226;&#8364;(TM)s mobile patents for Android phones &#226;&#8364;" First Take | |date=April 28, 2010 |accessdate=January 5, 2012}}</ref> (rumored to be $5 per handset).
* 2010, May 7: Nokia files a third lawsuit against Apple over 5 more patents.<ref>{{cite web|last=Johnston |first=Casey |url= |title=Nokia applies patent thumbscrews to Apple's iPad | |date=May 7, 2010|accessdate=January 5, 2012}}</ref>
* 2010, May 12: ''HTC files an ITC complaint against Apple over 5 patents.''<ref>{{cite web|url= |title=HTC countersues Apple, claims infringement of five patents | |date=May 12, 2010 |accessdate=January 5, 2012}}</ref>
* 2010, May 28: [[S3 Graphics]] files an ITC complaint against Apple over 4 patents used in the iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad, and Apple computers.<ref>{{cite web|url= |title=S3 Graphics Files New 337 Complaint Regarding Certain Electronic Devices With Image Processing Systems | |date=June 2, 2010 |accessdate=January 5, 2012}}</ref>
* 2010, Jun 28: Apple countersues Nokia in Nokia's third lawsuit, over 7 more patents.
* 2010, Jul 06: ''HTC countersues Apple over 3 patents.''<ref>{{cite web|url=,2817,2389587,00.asp |title=HTC Sues Apple UK Weeks after ITC Loss |author=Sara Yin |date=August 8, 2011|accessdate= February 11, 2013}}</ref>
* 2010, Jul 21: Nokia drops 1 patent from their ITC complaint against Apple.
* 2010, Aug 12: ''Oracle sues Google over 7 patents relating to the use of Java in Android.''<ref>{{cite web|author=Anthony Ha |url= |title=Oracle sues Google over Android | |date=August 12, 2010 |accessdate=January 5, 2012}}</ref> See [[Oracle v. Google]].
* 2010, Sep 17: Nokia adds 2 more patents to their third lawsuit against Apple.
* 2010, Sep 27: Apple sues Nokia in the UK and Germany over 9 patents.
* 2010, Sep 30: Nokia countersues Apple in Germany over 4 patents.
* 2010, Oct 01: ''Microsoft files an ITC complaint and a lawsuit against Motorola over 9 patents.''<ref>{{cite web|last=Protalinski |first=Emil |url= |title=Microsoft sues Motorola, citing Android patent infringement | |date=October 2, 2010 |accessdate=January 5, 2012}}</ref><ref>{{cite web|url= |title=Microsoft Files Patent Infringement Action Against Motorola | |date=October 1, 2010 |accessdate=January 5, 2012}}</ref>
* 2010, Oct 06: ''Motorola sues Apple over 18 patents, and files an ITC complaint against Apple over 6 of them.''<ref>{{cite web|last=Foresman |first=Chris |url= |title=Motorola asks ITC, two federal courts to throw book at Apple | |date=October 6, 2010 |accessdate=January 5, 2012}}</ref>
* 2010, Oct 08: ''Motorola files a request for declaratory judgement that they do not infringe 12 Apple patents, and that those patents be declared invalid.''<ref>{{cite web|url= |title=Motorola Moves Offensively with a New Lawsuit against Apple | |date=October 15, 2010 |accessdate=January 5, 2012}}</ref><ref>[ Motorola seeks to invalidate Apple phone patents].</ref>
* 2010, Oct 12: Nokia adds 3 more patents to their countersuit against Apple in Germany.
* 2010, Oct 25: Nokia sues Apple in another German court over 5 patents.
* 2010, Oct 28: Apple drops 4 patents from their ITC complaint against HTC and/or Nokia.
* 2010, Oct 29: ''Apple sues Motorola over 6 patents, and files an ITC complaint against Motorola over 3 of them.''<ref>[ Apple Files Lawsuit against Motorola to Defend Multi-Touch].</ref><ref>[ Apple Patent Case Against Motorola to Get Trade Agency Review].</ref>
* 2010, Nov 05: HTC drops 1 patent from their ITC complaint against Apple.
* 2010, Nov 09: ''Microsoft alleges Motorola has failed to comply with RAND (reasonable and non-discriminatory) licensing obligations.''
* 2010, Nov 10: ''Motorola sues Microsoft over 7 patents in one court and 9 patents in another.''
* 2010, Nov 18: ''Apple makes counterclaims against Motorola over 6 patents.''
* 2010, Nov 22: ''Motorola files an ITC complaint against Microsoft over 5 patents.''
* 2010, Dec 01: ''Apple adds the 12 patents to their suit against Motorola that Motorola previously requested declaratory judgement that they do not infringe.''<ref>[ Apple vs. Motorola: now 42 patents-in-suit (24 Apple and 18 Motorola patents)].</ref>
* 2010, Dec 03: Nokia countersues Apple in the UK over 4 patents, and files a new suit against Apple in the Netherlands over 2 patents.
* 2010, Dec 03: Apple countersues Nokia in Nokia's second German lawsuit, over 1 patent and 2 utility models.
* 2010, Dec 06: Nokia drops 1 patent from their ITC complaint against Apple.
* 2010, Dec 15 and 22: Nokia and Apple take their first German suit/countersuit to the Federal Patent Court of Germany.
* 2010, Dec 23: Motorola files a third lawsuit against Microsoft over 3 patents.
* 2010, Dec 23: Microsoft countersues Motorola over 7 patents.

* 2011, Jan 06: The third Nokia/Apple lawsuit/countersuit is transferred to the location of the first and second ones.
* 2011, Jan 18: Apple seeks to invalidate one Nokia patent in the UK, which it was not yet being sued over.
* 2011, Jan 18: Motorola drops 1 patent from their lawsuits against Microsoft.
* 2011, Jan 19: Microsoft counterclaims against Motorola, asserting 5 patents.
* 2011, Jan 25: Microsoft counterclaims against Motorola, asserting 2 patents.
* 2011, Feb 14: Motorola adds 2 patents to their lawsuits against Microsoft.
* 2011, Feb 22: Apple drops 1 more patent from their ITC complaint against HTC and Nokia.
* 2011, Mar 21: ''Microsoft sues [[Barnes & Noble]] over the Android operating system in the [[Nook]] ebook reader.''<ref>[ Microsoft sues Barnes & Noble over Android in Nook].</ref>
* 2011, Mar 25: ''ITC finds that Apple does not infringe on 5 Nokia patents.''
* 2011, Mar 29: Nokia files an ITC complaint against Apple over 7 more patents, and a fourth lawsuit over 6 of those.<ref>[ Nokia files second ITC complaint against Apple].</ref><ref>[ Escalation: Nokia files new ITC complaint against Apple (plus a corresponding federal lawsuit)], [[FOSS Patents]].</ref>
* 2011, Apr 15: ''Apple sues Samsung for patent and trademark infringement'' (7 utility patents, 3 design patents, 3 registered trade dresses, 6 trademarked icons) with its Galaxy line of mobile products, including the ''[[Galaxy S]]'' smartphone and the ''[[Galaxy Tab]]'' tablet.<ref>{{cite news |title=Apple to Samsung: Stop stealing ideas |url= | |accessdate=April 19, 2011}}</ref><ref>[ Apple sues Samsung: a complete lawsuit analysis].</ref>
* 2011, Apr 22: ''Samsung sues Apple in South Korea (5 patents), Japan (2 patents), and Germany (3 patents).''<ref>[,2817,2383964,00.asp Samsung Countersues Apple for Patent Infringement].</ref>
* 2011, Apr 28: ''Samsung countersues Apple over 10 patents.''<ref>[ Samsung sues Apple for infringing 10 patents: a closer look].</ref>
* 2011, Apr 29: Apple drops 1 more patent from their ITC complaint against HTC.
* 2011, May 18: ''Samsung ordered to provide Apple samples of the announced [[Galaxy S2]], [[Samsung Infuse 4G|Infuse 4G]],'' and ''Infuse 4G LTE'' smartphones, as well as the ''[[Galaxy Tab 8.9]]'' and ''[[Galaxy Tab 10.1]]'' tablets as part of Apple's lawsuit against the company.<ref>[ Samsung Must Show Cell Phones to Apple].</ref><ref>[,2817,2385861,00.asp Judge Orders Samsung to Give Apple Unreleased Tablets, Smartphones].</ref>
* 2011, May 18: ''Samsung files a court motion for Apple to provide samples of the unannounced iPhone 5 and iPad 3 prototypes.''<ref>[ Samsung&#226;&#8364;(TM)s lawyers demand to see the iPhone 5 and iPad 3].</ref>
* 2011, Jun 14: ''Nokia and Apple settle their litigation with Apple agreeing to pay Nokia an undisclosed one-time payment as well as continuing royalties.''<ref>[ Nokia Wins Apple Patent-License Deal Cash, Settles Lawsuits].</ref><ref>[ Apple Settles With Nokia In Patent Lawsuit].</ref>
* 2011, Jun 16: ''Apple amends its lawsuit against Samsung,'' dropping 2 utility patents and 1 design patent, and adding 3 new utility patents plus 4 trade dress applications, ''now covering the [[Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1]].''<ref>Staff Reporter, [ "Apple alleges Samsung of &#226;&#8364;&#732;slavishly copying&#226;&#8364;(TM) its technology; questions new Galaxy Tab 10.1"], ''International Business Times'', June 19, 2011.</ref>
* 2011, Jun 22: Apple countersues Samsung in South Korea over an unknown number of patents.
* 2011, Jun 22: ''Samsung's motion to be provided samples of Apple's unannounced [[iPhone 5]] and [[iPad 3]] prototypes is denied.''<ref>[ Shocker: Samsung not allowed to see iPhone 5 and iPad 3].</ref>
* 2011, Jun 27: [[General Dynamics]] [[Itronix]] signs an agreement with Microsoft to licence Microsoft patents in return for royalties on [[General Dynamics]] Itronix's Android-based devices.<ref>{{cite web|url= |title=Microsoft and General Dynamics Itronix Sign Patent Agreement: Agreement will cover General Dynamics Itronix devices running the Android platform | |date=June 27, 2011 |accessdate=January 5, 2012}}</ref><ref name="itronics_vmicro_onkyo_wistron">[ FOSS Patents: Android device makers sign up as Microsoft patent licensees -- an overview of the situation].</ref>
* 2011, Jun 28: Samsung files an ITC complaint and a lawsuit against Apple over 5 patents.
* 2011, Jun 29: Samsung sues Apple in London, UK over an unknown number of patents, and a Samsung lawsuit against Apple in Italy becomes known (details unknown).
* 2011, Jun 29: [[Velocity Micro]] signs an agreement with Microsoft to licence Microsoft patents in return for royalties on Velocity Micro's Android-based devices.<ref name="itronics_vmicro_onkyo_wistron"/><ref>{{cite web|url= |title=Microsoft and Velocity Micro, Inc., Sign Patent Agreement Covering Android-Based Devices: Agreement provides broad coverage of Microsoft&#226;&#8364;(TM)s patent portfolio | |date=June 29, 2011 |accessdate=January 5, 2012}}</ref>
* 2011, Jun 30: Samsung converts its countersuit against Apple into counterclaims against Apple's suit, dropping 2 patents but adding 4 more.
* 2011, Jun 30: ''A consortium of companies made up of Apple, [[EMC Corporation]], [[Ericsson]], Microsoft, Research In Motion and [[Sony]] win against Google<ref>[ Dealtalk: Google bid "pi" for Nortel patents and lost].</ref> in an auction of over 6,000 [[Nortel]] mobile-related telecommunications patents for $4.5 billion USD.''<ref>[ Nortel Announces the Winning Bidder of Its Patent Portfolio for a Purchase Price of US$4.5 Billion].</ref><ref>[ Who Won The 6,000+ Nortel Patents? Apple, RIM, Microsoft &#226;&#8364;" Everyone But Google].</ref>
* 2011, Jun 30: [[Onkyo]] signs an agreement with Microsoft to licence Microsoft patents in return for royalties on Onkyo's Android-based devices.<ref name="itronics_vmicro_onkyo_wistron"/><ref>{{cite web|url= |title=Microsoft and Onkyo Corp. Sign Patent Agreement Covering Android-Based Tablets: Agreement provides broad coverage of Microsoft&#226;&#8364;(TM)s patent portfolio | |date= |accessdate=January 5, 2012}}</ref>
* 2011, Jul 01: ''Apple files for preliminary injunction against 4 Samsung products: Infuse 4G, [[Samsung Galaxy S|Galaxy S 4G]], [[Droid Charge]],'' and ''Galaxy Tab 10.1'' based on 3 design patents and 1 utility patent.<ref>[ Apple files motion for preliminary injunction in the U.S. against four Samsung products: Infuse 4G, Galaxy S 4G, Droid Charge, Galaxy Tab 10.1].</ref>
* 2011, Jul 01: ''ITC rules that Apple infringes on 2 patents held by S3 Graphics, while not infringing on 2 others.''<ref>[;txt ITC ruling mixed in S3 Graphics v. Apple].</ref>
* 2011, Jul 05: ''Apple files an ITC complaint against Samsung over 6 smartphones and 2 tablets'' infringing 5 utility patents and 2 design patents.
* 2011, Jul 05: [[Wistron Corporation|Wistron]] signs an agreement with Microsoft to licence Microsoft patents in return for royalties on Wistron's Android-based devices.<ref name="itronics_vmicro_onkyo_wistron"/><ref>{{cite web|url= |title=Microsoft and Wistron Sign Patent Agreement: Agreement will cover Wistron&#226;&#8364;(TM)s Android tablets, smartphones and e-readers | |date=July 5, 2011 |accessdate=January 5, 2012}}</ref><ref>[ Microsoft patent division taking cash from at least 5 Android vendors].</ref>
* 2011, Jul 06: ''HTC agrees to purchase S3 Graphics'' to secure 235 patents for use in its defense against Apple.<ref>[ DailyTech - VIA, WTI Sell Stakes in S3 Graphics to HTC].</ref><ref>[ HTC to Acquire Chip Designer S3 Graphics, Securing Patents in Apple Fight - Bloomberg].</ref><ref>[;txt HTC facing backlash for S3 acquisition].</ref>
* 2011, Jul 06: ''Microsoft seeks $15 licensing fees from Samsung for a range of claimed patent violations on every Android device''.<ref>[ Microsoft wants Samsung to pay smartphone license].</ref>
* 2011, Jul 11: Apple files a second ITC complaint against HTC over 5 more patents, and sues HTC over 4 patents from this second ITC complaint that they weren't already suing HTC over.<ref>[ HTC&#226;&#8364;(TM)s Flyer Tablet, Droid Accused of Infringing Apple Patents - Bloomberg].</ref><ref>[ FOSS Patents: Apple files second ITC complaint against HTC: better luck next time?].</ref>
* 2011, Jul 11-12: Google acquires 1,029 Patents from IBM for an undisclosed amount.<ref>[ Google Acquires Over 1,000 IBM Patents in July].</ref><ref>[ Google's New Patents from IBM].</ref>
* 2011, Jul 15: ''ITC finds HTC infringes on 2 Apple patents.''<ref>[ Bad News for Android: ITC Rules HTC Violated Two Apple Patents - John Paczkowski - News - AllThingsD].</ref>
* 2011, Jul 29: HTC sues Apple in London, UK over an unknown number of patents.
* 2011, Aug 02: ''Apple sues Samsung in Australia over 10 patents, resulting in Samsung delaying the launch and halting advertising of the Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 tablet in Australia'' to an indefinite date.<ref>[ Apple Lawsuit Puts Samsung Tablet Sales in Australia on Hold].</ref><ref>[ Samsung's official comment on the Australian Galaxy Tab 10.1 situation is extremely weak].</ref>
* 2011, Aug 09: ''A German court issues a [[Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1#Apple patent lawsuit|preliminary injunction against the Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1]]'' in Apple's lawsuit against Samsung ''which causes its sale to be banned in most of Europe.''<ref>{{cite news |last=Tsukayama |first=Hayley |title=Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 imports banned in most of Europe |url= |newspaper=The Washington Post |date=August 10, 2011 |accessdate=August 11, 2011}}</ref><ref>[ Preliminary injunction granted by German court: Apple blocks Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 in the entire European Union except for the Netherlands].</ref>
* 2011, Aug 15: ''[[Motorola Mobility#Proposed acquisition by Google|Google announces its intention to buy Motorola Mobility]] for $12.5 billion USD.'' Eighteen of Motorola's patents could potentially be used for defense or countersuits against Apple and Microsoft, and may influence the smartphone war. These patents may change the balance of power, and force the various players to settle their lawsuits.<ref>{{cite web |url= |title=Microsoft files to ban imports of Motorola smartphones |publisher=Android and Me |date= |accessdate=December 10, 2011}}</ref><ref>{{cite news |last=Womack |first=Brian |url= |title=Motorola Value Found in 18 Patents Used Against Apple: Tech |publisher=Bloomberg |date=August 22, 2011 |accessdate=December 10, 2011}}</ref>
* 2011, Aug 16: ''The Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 sales ban in Europe is lifted outside of Germany.''<ref>{{cite news |title=Samsung Galaxy tablet ban lifted in most of Europe |url= |work=Reuters |accessdate=August 16, 2011 |first=Nicola |last=Leske |date=August 16, 2011}}</ref><ref>{{cite news |title=Samsung Galaxy Tab ban is on hold |url= |work=BBC |accessdate=August 16, 2011 |date=August 16, 2011}}</ref>
* 2011, Aug 17: Google acquires 1,023 more patents from IBM for an undisclosed amount (not revealed until 13 Sep 2011).<ref name="GoogleIBMAugust">[ Google and IBM do it again: Google Acquires over 1,000 Patents from IBM in August].</ref>
* 2011, Aug 23: ''Microsoft files a complaint with the ITC requesting a ban on several key Motorola smartphones and devices in the USA'' based on infringements of 7 patents.<ref>[ Microsoft Asks For An Import Ban On Motorola Smartphones].</ref><ref>{{cite web |url= |title=Microsoft files to ban imports of Motorola smartphones |publisher=Android and Me |date= |accessdate=December 10, 2011}}</ref>
* 2011, Aug 24: ''A court in the Netherlands rules that Samsung will be banned from selling the Galaxy S, Galaxy S II and Galaxy Ace in a number of European countries'' due to Apple's patent infringement claims.<ref>[ Euro ban for Samsung Galaxy phone].</ref>
* 2011, Sep 02: ''Apple granted preliminary injunction against Samsung preventing display of the prototype Samsung Galaxy Tab 7.7 tablet at the IFA trade show in Berlin.''<ref>[ Samsung Puts Galaxy 10.1 Tablet on Hold as Apple Wins German Court Order].</ref>
* 2011, Sep 02: ''Apple court filings assert that Andy Rubin got inspiration for Android framework while working at Apple'' before working at General Magic and Danger, Inc.<ref>[ FOSS Patents: Apple to ITC: Andy Rubin got inspiration for Android framework while working at Apple, hence infringes an Apple API patent].</ref>
* 2011, Sep 07: ''HTC countersues Apple using nine patents from Google.'' The move is seen as a possible first step for Google giving direct support in lawsuits involving manufacturers using Android.<ref>{{cite news |last=Milford |first=Phil |url= |title=HTC Sues Apple Using Google Patents Bought Last Week as Battle Escalates |publisher=Bloomberg |date=September 8, 2011 |accessdate=December 10, 2011}}</ref><ref>[ Google Hands HTC Patents to Use Against Apple in Smartphone Wars].</ref><ref>{{cite web|last=Patel |first=Nilay |url= |title=HTC sues Apple for patent infringement&#226;&#8364;&#166; using patents purchased by Google | |date=September 7, 2011 |accessdate=January 5, 2012}}</ref><ref>[ Google gets its hands dirty - Apple 2.0 - Fortune Tech].</ref>
* 2011, Sep 08: ''[[Acer Inc.|Acer]]<ref>{{cite web|url= |title=Microsoft and Acer Sign Patent License Agreement: Agreement will cover Acer&#226;&#8364;(TM)s Android tablets and smartphones | |date=September 8, 2011 |accessdate=January 5, 2012}}</ref> and [[ViewSonic]]<ref>{{cite web|url= |title=Microsoft and ViewSonic Sign Patent Agreement: Agreement will cover ViewSonic&#226;&#8364;(TM)s Android Tablets and smartphones | |date=September 8, 2011 |accessdate=January 5, 2012}}</ref> sign patent license agreements with Microsoft'' regarding their use of Android on smartphones and tablets.<ref>{{cite web|url= |title=Microsoft ropes two more OEMs into Android patent deal | |date= |accessdate=January 5, 2012}}</ref><ref>{{cite news|url= |title=Microsoft signs Android patent agreements with Acer, ViewSonic | |date=September 8, 2011 |accessdate=January 5, 2012 |first=Janet I. |last=Tu}}</ref>
* 2011, Sep 09: ''Apple's preliminary injunction against sales of the Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 in Germany is upheld.''<ref>{{cite news|last=Matussek |first=Karin |url= |title=Apple Wins German Ban on Samsung Tablet | |date=September 9, 2011 |accessdate=January 5, 2012}}</ref>
* 2011, Sep 12: Samsung announces a lawsuit against Apple in France that had been filed in July over 3 patents.<ref>{{cite web|url= |title=Latest Samsung lawsuit targets Apple's iPhone, iPad in France |publisher=AppleInsider |date=September 13, 2011 |accessdate=January 5, 2012}}</ref>
* 2011, Sep 12: Apple countersues Samsung in the UK over an unknown number of patents.<ref>{{cite web|last=Meyer |first=David |url= |title=Apple sues Samsung in the UK over Android &#124; ZDNet UK | |date=September 14, 2011 |accessdate=January 5, 2012}}</ref>
* 2011, Sep 13: Google's August 17 acquisition of 1,023 patents from IBM is revealed by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office.<ref name="GoogleIBMAugust"/><ref>{{cite web|url= |title=USPTO Assignments on the Web | |date= |accessdate=January 5, 2012}}</ref>
* 2011, Sep 17: Samsung countersues Apple in Australia over 7 patents.<ref>{{cite web|url= |title=Samsung fires back at Apple in Australia with countersuit against iPhone, iPad | |date= |accessdate=January 5, 2012}}</ref>
* 2011, Sep 28: ''Samsung signs an agreement with Microsoft to licence Microsoft patents in return for royalties on Samsung's Android-based devices.''<ref>{{cite web|url= |title=Microsoft and Samsung Broaden Smartphone Partnership: Agreements mark new initiatives to promote Windows Phone and share intellectual property | |date=September 28, 2011 |accessdate=January 5, 2012}}</ref><ref>[ Our Licensing Deal with Samsung: How IP Drives Innovation and Collaboration - Microsoft on the Issues - Site Home - TechNet Blogs].</ref><ref>{{cite web|author=Florian Mueller |url= |title=FOSS Patents: Samsung takes Android patent license from Microsoft rather than wait for Motorola | |date=September 28, 2011 |accessdate=January 5, 2012}}</ref>
* 2011, Oct 12: ''An Australian court issues a preliminary injunction against the Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 in Apple's lawsuit against Samsung which prevents its sale in Australia leading up to the 2011 holiday season.''<ref>{{cite web|url= |title=Apple Wins Injunction Blocking Sale of Galaxy Tab 10.1 in Australia |publisher=Mac Rumors |date=October 12, 2011 |accessdate=January 5, 2012}}</ref>
* 2011, Oct 13: ''Quanta signs an agreement with Microsoft to licence Microsoft patents in return for royalties on Quanta's Android and Chrome-based devices.''<ref>{{cite web|url= |title=Microsoft and Quanta Computer Sign Patent Agreement Covering Android and Chrome-Based Devices - Redmond, Wash., Oct. 13, 2011 /PRNewswire/ |location=Washington | |date= |accessdate=January 5, 2012}}</ref><ref>[ Microsoft Inks Another Android Patent Deal, This Time With Quanta | TechCrunch].</ref>
* 2011, Oct 13: ''Judge in Apple's U.S. lawsuit against Samsung agrees that Samsung's tablets infringe on Apple's patents, but also that the validity of some of the patents might be questionable.''<ref>{{cite news|last=Levine |first=Dan |url= |title=U.S. judge says Samsung tablets infringe Apple patents | |date=October 13, 2011|accessdate=January 5, 2012}}</ref>

* 2012, Jan 17: Apple files a lawsuit in D&#195;&#188;sseldorf regional court, Germany against Samsung claiming the Galaxy S2 infringes on Apple patents.<ref>[ Apple files German lawsuit against Samsung, targets Galaxy S II, nine other smartphones - Engadget<!-- Bot generated title -->]</ref>
* 2012, Mar 7: ''Samsung files a lawsuit in Seoul's Central district court claiming that the iPhone 4S and iPad 2 infringe on three of its patents.''<ref>{{cite news|first=Parnell|last=Brid-Aine|url= |title=Samsung celebrates iPad 3 day by suing Apple AGAIN],| date= March 7, 2012 |accessdate=July 30, 2012}}</ref>
* 2012, Mar 7: Judge Allan Gropper ruled that Apple was disallowed from suing from Kodak for patent infringement. arguing that it would be an "inappropriate way forward".<ref>Whittaker, Zach, [ Kodak sues, tells Apple: 'get off our patents'], [[CNet]],, June 20, 2012. Accessed July 30, 2012.</ref>
* 2012, May 22: Google Inc. completes acquisition of Motorola Mobility.{{citation needed|date=December 2012}}
* 2012, Jun 10: ''Apple sues Samsung over its auto-correct patent in San Jose Calif.''<ref>[ Apple sues Samsung over autocorrect patent<!-- Bot generated title -->]</ref>
* 2012, Jun 23: ''Federal Judge Posner throws out Apple-Motorola case with prejudice.''<ref>[ In bid for patent sanity, judge throws out entire Apple/Motorola case | Ars Technica<!-- Bot generated title -->]</ref>
* 2012, Jun 29: ''Apple is granted an injunction against import of the Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1.''<ref>[ Samsung Appeals Apple Injunction Against Galaxy Tab | PCWorld Business Center<!-- Bot generated title -->]</ref>
*2012, Jun 30: '' [[Lucy H. Koh|Judge Lucy Koh]] grants Apple an injunction against the Samsung Galaxy Nexus.''<ref>[ Report: Apple Wins Injunction Against Galaxy Nexus | PCWorld Business Center<!-- Bot generated title -->]</ref>
*2012, Jul 1: ''Samsung files an appeal against Apple's injunction against the Galaxy Nexus.''<ref>[ Samsung appeals Apple's injunction against Galaxy Nexus | Apple - CNET News<!-- Bot generated title -->]</ref>
*2012, Jul 2: Nokia claims that the [[Nexus 7]] infringes on its patents.<ref>[ Google's Nexus 7 tablet infringes Nokia patents - The Inquirer<!-- Bot generated title -->]</ref>
*2012, Jul 4: ''A high court in the UK rules that three of the four patents Apple brought up against HTC are invalid.''<ref>[ UK High Court rules three Apple patents invalid, vindicates HTC | The Verge<!-- Bot generated title -->]</ref>
*2012, Jul 6: Google and Samsung are forced to degrade the universal search bar on the Galaxy Nexus and Galaxy S3 as a result of an injunction granted to Apple by [[Lucy H. Koh|Judge Lucy Koh]].<ref>[ And So It's Come To This: Samsung/Google Forced To Degrade Features In Patent Dispute | Techdirt<!-- Bot generated title -->]</ref>
*2012, Jul 6: The ITU announces that it is convening a patent roundtable on October 10 in Geneva to have stakeholders resolve their differences.<ref>[ ITU wants to bring smartphone makers to peace talks, hash out patent wars - Engadget<!-- Bot generated title -->]</ref>
*2012, Jul 9: Samsung wins a patent dispute on the Galaxy Tab against Apple in the UK. Judge Colin Birss stated that Samsung's tablets were "not as cool" as the Apple's, and "do not have the same understated and extreme simplicity which is possessed by the Apple design."<ref>[ UK Judge says Galaxy Tab 'not as cool' as iPad, awards Samsung win in design suit - Engadget<!-- Bot generated title -->]</ref>
*2012, Jul 12: San Francisco based EMG Technology sues Google in an East Texas court claiming the mobile version of Chrome infringes on its patent for "apparatus and method of manipulating a region on a wireless device screen for viewing, zooming and scrolling internet content."<ref>[,0,1089802.story EMG Technology sues Google over its Chrome mobile Web browser -<!-- Bot generated title -->]</ref>
*2012, Jul 15: RIM is ordered to pay US$147 million to Mformation for infringement of its remote management patent.<ref>[ Blackberry maker RIM order to pay $147 million in patent lawsuit<!-- Bot generated title -->]</ref>
*2012, Jul 18: Apple is granted 'the mother of all smartphone patents' by the [[USPTO]], "encompass[ing] the user interfaces Apple designed for blogging, e-mail, telephone, camera, video player, calendar, browser, widgets, search, notes, maps and most importantly, a multi-touch interface".<ref></ref><ref></ref>
*2012, Jul 18: Apple is forced by UK Judge Birss to publish public apologies to Samsung on their website stating that Samsung did not copy the iPad.<ref>[ Bloomberg: Apple Must Post Notice Online In UK Saying Samsung Didn't Copy iPad - Business Insider<!-- Bot generated title -->]</ref><ref>[ Apple Must Publish Notice Samsung Didn&#226;&#8364;(TM)t Copy IPad in U.K. - Bloomberg<!-- Bot generated title -->]</ref><ref></ref>
*2012, Jul 27: A Mannheim court bans Motorola's Android devices in Germany ruling that they infringe on Microsoft FAT patent.<ref>[ Motorola Android devices banned in Germany for infringing Microsoft's FAT patent | The Verge<!-- Bot generated title -->]</ref>
* 2012, Aug 23: A court in Seoul in South Korea ruled that both Apple and Samsung had infringed each other's patents, and that Samsung had not copied the look and feel of Apple's products.<ref></ref>
*2012, Aug 24: Apple wins patent dispute against Samsung and is awarded $1.049 billion in damages for 6 of the 7 patents brought to bear.<ref></ref> Samsung is awarded $0 in counter suit.<ref name=""></ref> The jury deliberated for 3 days before coming to a verdict<ref></ref> that found among other things that Samsung violated the "scrolling bounce back" patent and "pinch to zoom" patent of Apple.<ref name=""/>
*2012, Aug 31: A Tokyo court rules that Samsung&#226;&#8364;(TM)s Galaxy smartphones and tablets do not violate an Apple patent on technology that synchronizes music and videos between devices and servers.<ref></ref>
*2012, Oct 11: A U.S. appellate court overturns the sales ban against the Samsung Galaxy Nexus smartphone finding that the district court in California "abused its discretion" in imposing a preliminary injunction on Galaxy Nexus sales and that Apple did not establish cause for a sales ban.<ref></ref>
*2012, Oct 18: The Court of Appeal of England and Wales upheld the High Court Judgement that Samsung's Galaxy Tablet didn't infringe Apple's designs. As part of the ruling Apple has been instructed to run advertisements in select publications and on its own website saying Samsung didn't copy its tablet designs. This decision is valid through all the European Union and led Darren Smyth partner at EIP to remark " this will be the end of the line. An appeal to the Supreme Court is in principle possible but there has been no indication so far that Apple plan such an appeal."<ref></ref>
*2012, Oct 23: In a non-final Office action the USPTO declares all 20 claims of Apple's rubber-banding patent (U.S. Patent No. 7,469,381) invalid, including claim 19, which Apple successfully asserted against Samsung in the summer trial in California. The claims were rejected based on 'obviousness' and 'lack of novelty'.<ref></ref><ref>{{cite web|title=Patent office tentatively invalidates Apple's rubber-banding patent used in Samsung trial|url=|work=FOSS Patents|accessdate=October 19, 2012}}</ref>
*2012, Nov 5: An Apple lawsuit against Google's Motorola Mobility over alleged patent abuse is thrown out by a US Federal Court.<ref></ref>
*2012, Nov 13: HTC settles with Apple and agrees to pay royalties of an undisclosed sum to Apple Inc.<ref></ref>
*2012, Nov 28: Ericsson, Swedish mobile communication infrastructure manufacturer, sues Samsung over patent infringement on its mobile infrastructure technology in the United States.<ref>{{cite web|last=Fitchard|first=Kevin|title=Samsung gets it from all sides.|url=|publisher=[[GigaOM]]|date=November 27, 2012|accessdate=November 29, 2012}}</ref>
*2012, Dec 7: Preliminary [[United States Patent and Trademark Office]] ruling declares the Steve Jobs patent, U.S. Patent No. 7,479,949, invalid on all 20 claims.<ref>{{cite news |author= |coauthors= |title=Preliminary Patent Office Ruling Invalidates Apple&#226;&#8364;(TM)s &#226;&#8364;&#732;Steve Jobs Patent&#226;&#8364;(TM) |url= |quote= |newspaper=[[Wired magazine]] |date= |accessdate=December 8, 2012 }}</ref>
*2012, Dec 13: A US federal jury rules that Apple's iPhone infringed on three mobile device patents belonging to MobileMedia Ideas LLC, a company belonging to Nokia and Sony.<ref>{{cite news |author=Brent Kendall |coauthors= |title=Apple Loses Patent Case to Licensing Firm |url= |quote= |newspaper=The Wall Street Journal |date=December 13, 2012 |accessdate=December 13, 2012}}</ref>
*2012, Dec 17: Judge Koh denies Apple's motion for permanent injunction against Samsung.<ref>[ Apple Denied Motion for Permanent Injunction]</ref>
*2012, Dec 26: Samsung Electronics files a complaint against Ericsson with the [[United States International Trade Commission]] (USITC) to ban some Ericsson products from sales in the US.<ref>{{cite web|url= |author=Hyunjoo Jin |coauthors=Robert Birsel |title=Samsung Elec seeks U.S. sales ban on some Ericsson products |publisher=[[Yahoo]]|date=December 26, 2012|accessdate=26 December 2012}}</ref>

{{expandlist|date=November 2013}}

* 2013, Oct 31: [[Rockstar Consortium]], a consortium owned by companies including Apple and Microsoft, starts legal action against [[Google]], [[Huawei]] and [[Samsung]],<ref>{{cite web|url=|title=Google, Samsung, Huawei sued over Nortel patents|author=Dan Levine|publisher=Reuters|date=October 31, 2013}}</ref> and other makers of [[Android phone]]s including [[Asustek]], [[HTC]], [[LG Electronics]], [[Pantech]], and [[ZTE]].<ref>{{Cite web|url=|title=Patent war goes nuclear: Microsoft, Apple-owned &#226;&#8364;oeRockstar&#226;&#8364; sues Google|author=Joe Mullin|publisher=Ars Technica|date=November 1, 2013}}</ref>
* 2013, December 23: Google initiates legal action against Rockstar Consortium with a countersuit filed in San Jose, California.<ref>{{cite web|url=|title=Google fights back against Rockstar patent group|author=Michelle Meyers|date=26 December 2013|publisher=CNET}}</ref>

==See also==
* [[Smartphone]]
* [[Apple Inc. litigation]]
* ''[[Apple Inc. v. Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd.]]''
* ''[[Motorola Mobility v. Apple Inc.]]''
* ''[[Oracle v. Google]]''
* ''[[Microsoft v. Motorola]]''


{{Mobile phones}}
{{Table Mobile operating systems}}

[[Category:Smartphone patent wars| ]]
[[Category:Software wars]]
[[Category:Business rivalries]]
[[Category:Patent law]]
[[Category:Apple Inc. litigation]]
[[Category:Google litigation]]


The present invention relates to printing apparatus of the type which uses electrosensitive paper, such apparatus being particularly suitable for use in providing computer print-outs.

The electrosensitive paper includes a dark coloured or black lacquer coating on the paper, and a metallizing layer covering the lacquer coating, the metallizing being formed of a volatile metal such as aluminium or cadmium deposited in a layer of the order of thickness. The printing action is generated by burning off portions of the layer of metallizing on the paper using an electric discharge. This can be achieved by scanning a writing stylus over the surface of the paper, the stylus being connected to an electrical potential relative to the metallizing on the paper. The resulting current then evaporates the metal in the vicinity of the stylus tip where the current density is very high, and this exposes the dark coloured or black lacquer underneath thereby providing a permanent trace contrasting with the colour of the metallizing layer. This printing action, which can be termed "burn out", is a very rapid process lasting only a few microseconds, so that this can form the basis of a very fast method of printing.


The object of the invention is to provide improved apparatus of this type in which one or more writing styli are guided across the paper with a high degree of precision in terms of repeatability and accuracy of trace, such apparatus being relatively simple and inexpensive to produce.

The present invention provides printing apparatus for use with electrosensitive paper, said apparatus comprising a paper feed mechanism for feeding electrosensitive paper past a scanning position, scanning means carrying at least one writing stylis and being arranged to traverse the stylus across the scanning position, guide means for maintaining the stylus in registration as it traverses the scan, and signal generating means for generating writing signals to the stylus in dependence on its position during each scan.

In the preferred apparatus, the scanning means is in the form of an endless belt suspended between belt guiding means such as a pair of pulleys. Preferably, two styli are carried by the belt and repeatedly scan alternate lines on the paper with rotation of the belt, means being provided to synchronize rotation of the belt with the paper feed mechanism.


In order that the present invention may be more readily understood, an embodiment thereof will now be described, by way of example, with reference to the accompanying drawings, in which:

FIG. 1 shows a partly schematic perspective view of important features of the preferred embodiment, with certain parts cut away for increased clarity;

FIG. 2 is a plan view of part of FIG. 1;

FIG. 3 is an enlarged sectional view along line 3--3 of FIG. 1;

FIG. 4 is a block diagram of the control circuit of FIG. 1; and

FIG. 5 is a waveform diagram of signals appearing in the circuit of FIG. 4.


Referring to the drawings, and specifically to FIG. 1, there is shown printing apparatus including a preferred stylus guidance means in the form of an endless belt carrying the writing stylus, and means for maintaining registration and alignment of the stylus as the belt guides it across the paper. The apparatus includes a motor 10 which is arranged to drive an endless belt 11 by means of suitable gearing 12 connected to a drive pulley 13. The belt 11 is preferably made of a light synthetic plastic material and may, but need not, be toothed to improve grip by the drive pulley 13. An idler pulley 14 is provided so as to support the belt 11 between itself and the drive pulley 13 in such a way that one side of the belt runs in front of a sheet of electrosensitive paper 15. Rollers 16, also driven via the gearing 12, cause the paper to be moved past the belt 11.

The belt 11 carried one or more writing styli (two being shown), each of which is in the form of a two-pronged hairspring 17 being attached to the belt by means of a pin 18 integrally moulded with the belt (see FIG. 3). Each hairspring 17 is therefore towed across the paper 15 by movement of the belt 11. The tips of each hairspring 17 are turned so that one tip 17a forms the stylus point which contacts the paper normally to the plane of the paper and the other tip 17b contacts a conductor strip 19 for transferring a writing signal from the strip 19 to the stylus point 17a and thence to the paper. The writing pressure between the stylus and the paper, preferably between 1 and 10 grams, is generated by compression of the hairspring 17 between the conductor strip 19 and paper 15. However, the line of action of the two tips 17a, 17b is at such an angle that they are respectively biased towards guide surfaces 20, 21 on the frame (shown in more detail in FIG. 3). Surface 20 is arranged to guide the stylus tip 17a across the paper and surface 21 is arranged to guide the tip 17b to contact the conductor strip 19 and to provide an effective vertical compression effect between the two tips so as to improve registration of the stylus tip 17a with the paper. The stylus is otherwise free to swivel and rotate on the pin 18 provided on the belt 11, and is therefore drawn along a reference straight edge on the paper 15 without any of the biasing force being taken in reaction by the belt. A further preferred feature is the provision of a grooved surface 22 in which the belt pin 18 can travel across the width of the paper so that lateral displacement of the belt does not produce horizontal modulation of the writing tip.

A control circuit, schematically shown as block 24, is connected between the conductor strip 19 and a conductor arrangement 25 connected to the metallizing on the paper, such as by the provision of conductive surfaces on the rollers 16. Writing signals, for example at 40 volts D.C., are then applied between the conductor strip 19 (and hence the stylus tip 17a) and the conductor arrangement 25 (and hence the metallizing on the paper 15) and, as the stylus traverses the paper, a series of dots is "burnt out" of the paper at required locations.

It will be seen that the arrangement thus far described ensures that a series of parallel lines can be drawn on the paper which is being continually winched from the roll by the rollers 16. It further remains to synchronize the writing signals for one line with those for other lines so that vertical registration of characters being printed can be maintained.

In order to synchronize the start of each line, the writing tip 17a is prevented from contacting the first few millimeters of paper by means of a thin insulated foil 26. As soon as the writing tip 17a drops off this foil, it contacts the metallized surface of the paper 15 and an electrical signal is generated and detected by the control circuit 24. Now while the stylus is being drawn across the paper, its progress is measured by a transducer 27 such as an optical encoder which provides positional signals to the control circuit 24. It is desirable that the signal produced by this transducer has a higher resolution than that finally required. For example, if it is required that each line should be resolvable into 256 dots, then the transducer 27 should generate, say, 1024 dots. When this signal is gated with the paper contact signal and divided down by 4, then the register of each line should not be out by more than a quarter of the width of a dot. In this way, mechanically dissimiliar styli should generate substantially identical traces.

As a further refinement to cater for the possibility of eccentric pulleys, gears or transducers etc., it is highly desirable that, at the beginning of each line when the synchronizing signal is generated, the belt pulleys 13, 14 should be in the same relative position and that the transducer 27 also indicates the same relative position irrespective of the writing stylus adopted.

These two stipulations are satisfied, firstly, by ensuring that the spacing between adjacent styli is equal to an integer (which may equal one) multiple of the circumference of a pulley, and secondly by arranging the gearing 12 such that each rotation of the pulley 13 provides an integer multiple number of rotations of the transducer disc. The relative positions of these components will therefore be maintained constant at the start of each line. Thus, whereas eccentric pulleys would give a variation in the dot spacing across the paper width, at least that variation would be repeated on each line so that characters printed from the dots would be vertically registered and hence present a consistent appearance.

Referring to FIG. 4, the control circuit 24 is shown in greater detail, together with certain parts of the printing apparatus already described. The transducer 27 is a light sensitive device comprising a light emitting diode 30 arranged to direct a beam of light on to a light responsive element shown as a phototransistor 31. The beam of light is interrupted by an apertured disc 32 driven by the gearing 12 of FIG. 1, so as to provide a pulsed signal, the timing of the pulses depending on the speed of rotation of the disc 32. The pulsed signal is applied to one input of an AND-gate 40 whose output is connected via a divide-by-four circuit 42 to a block input of a buffer store and decoder 44. The buffer store and decoder 44 receives and stores printing information (e.g. in respect of one scanned line or preferably in respect of one line of print, in other words, a number of scanned lines) from suitable ancilliary equipment, for example a computer as shown. The buffer store and decoder 44 is responsive to clock pulses at its clock input to selectively enable a high voltage switch 46 to permit current to flow from a power supply 48 (e.g. providing 40-50 V) to the conductor strip 19 and thence via the hairspring 17 to the paper 15. A return current path is provided via the roller 16 having a conductive surface and being connected to earth (ground) via a resistor.

The conductor strip 19 is also connected to a paper detect circuit 50 which provides an indication when the hairspring 17 runs off the insulating foil 26 and on to the paper. The output of the paper detect circuit 50 is connected to the second input of the AND-gate 40.

The operation of the control circuit 24 will now be described with reference to the waveform diagram of FIG. 5.

Waveform A represents the output of the paper detect circuit 50; as shown, the waveform remains "low" until the hairspring 17 runs off the insulating foil and makes contact with the paper thus generating an electrical signal and raising the level of the output waveform to "high".

Waveform B represents the output of the transducer 27; every time an aperture of the rotating disc 32 allows light from the light emitting diode 30 to be directed on to the phototransistor 31, a pulse is produced.

Waveform C represents the output of the AND-gate 40 which has waveforms A and B fed as inputs thereto. The pulsed waveform B is produced at the output of AND-gate 40 only when the gate is held open by a "high" waveform (A) at its other

Comment Re:Presumed guilty (Score 2) 195

No, that's not exactly what the article says.

The article says the FBI seized the Tormail thingie as part of an investigation into the company that was hosting it - which they were investigating because the company in question was providing hosting services to child pornographers.

This turns out to be a stroke of luck for the FBI, as it means for all subsequent investigations, if something comes up that involves a Tormail email address, they don't need a cooperative ISP to provide them with the contents of the associated mailbox.

And, uh, that's about it. You're not presumed guilty, it's just you made the mistake of using something that the FBI now have complete access to, kinda like if you walked through a street in a crime ridden neighborhood, and the local police had decided to clamp down on crime there by covering the entire area in cops, you'd be "under surveilance" even though the police don't think you've done anything and should probably hope they don't mistake you for someone else or something like that.

Comment Re:Who was your Highest Bidder? (Score 4, Funny) 303

This is sooooooooo true. Only the other day, I logged in to AdWords, and there at the top of the screen was a big box that said "Find out the life history of anyone on the Internet by entering their email address, reddit, or Slashdot ID in this box".

So I looked for a random number. There was a flyer for a local car dealership advertising a Corolla for $9,751.38, so I entered that, and clicked Submit. There was a brief request asking me to give my consent to a charge of 25c on my Google Wallet, and I thought "What the hell, why not?" and gave it.

There, in front of me, was all the information about "975138" I asked for. It was one of those "Be careful what you wish for, you might get it" things. Slashdot had pulled up the details of some Slashdotter with the nick "Jaktar".

Everything was there.

His phone numbers. His credit record. I could see he'd spent over $300 in the last month on "Gold pony cookies" for the popular free-to-play Facebook game "Pony club". He had a recurring membership on several websites, including the Alabama Post Gazette, Netflix, and something called "Hot Manponies Dot Com".

Even better was that all of this was hyperlinked to similarly relevant information. I clicked on a credit card billing line marked "KATZ PSYCHIATRIC SERV COPAY", and immediately received a list of future and prior appointments with a therapist. The prior appointments were also hyperlinked, and a quick click revealed a Google Voice style transcription of the appointment in question (not that interesting, 20 minutes of it was marked "(extended sobbing, 2 mins)" alternating with "(hysterical laughing, 60 seconds)".

Finally, there was information to help people like me, who just want to advertise and tailor our ads to people like "Jaktar". Google had analyzed the person's history, and recommended various keywords I could use in my ads to appeal to people like him. "Star Wars", "Leia", "PHP", "Free to play", and "Ponies" came up.

This type of information is gold, quite frankly. Advertisers like me are always interested in targetting specific people at great expense, rather than trying to appeal to broad swathes of the population, so Google collecting this data and selling it to us is exactly what we need.

Thanks Google!

Comment Re:So... (Score 1) 393

If merely comparing someone to someone bad was libelous, Godwin's law would have to be restated as "Back when the Internet existed, as each online discussion ended in a comparison involving Nazis or Hitler, resulting in the infamous libel suits that brought down that brave experiment in free speech and porn."

Look at it this way: it's OK to say "Joe Bloggs is just like Hitler". What's less OK is to say "I have compelling proof that Joe Bloggs is organizing a program of mass exterminations for jewish people, and is trying to manipulate events so that Germany can safely invade Poland, and he's also advocating the creation of a Federal freeway system."

I think that's a reasonable balance actually, as it allows hyperbole as long as it remains hyperbole, not actual false accusations.

Comment Re:Quality? (Score 1) 160

When you leave your parent's basement, you'll probably find yourself doing a few things to get a job, including higher education, relocating, and investing more than you'd otherwise want and need to in housing, transportation equipment, etc.

If you're under the impression employees took no risks, and have little to pay back, during the process of looking for work, then you're dumber than a Republican.

It's also worth noting that you're failing completely to address any issues here, including explaining why the risks associated with selling an unknown quantity of movie views at cinemas, followed by an unknown number of DVDs, streaming views, video on demand, etc, followed by some unknown to-be-negotiated TV rights, is somehow less than the risks associated with a GUARANTEED FIXED INCOME.

You know else prefers standard monthly payments? Pretty much everyone, like the OP said. Not just employees, but corporations too. In many cases, the overwhelming cost of the underlying commodities makes it impossible to do so - for example, oil and groceries (although look at Warehouse stores for an example of companies that do, actually, attempt to make their income fixed by providing a hybrid cost structure.) But others, where no underlying commodity is an issue, and the entire cost structure comprises of "We're going to make a major investment and then try to get users to pay it back" ask you to pay by the month.

Cable TV? By the month. Cell phone? By the month. Internet? By the month. Cable TV premium channel (HBO, etc - hmmm, maybe a particularly relevent example?) - by the month.

The OP is completely right.

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