Vertical Computer Systems
is suing Microsoft
for infringing on their patent
for "generating websites in an arbitrary object framework." If the patent sounds questionable to you, you're not alone. Skimming thru the patent, it reads like a how-to for some key patterns and practices... in legalese, of course. Specifically, it reminds me of some key model-driven architecture (MDA) concepts. Most notably, I'd have to say it resembles the software factory concept. I didn't dig into the patent completely, but it seriously makes me question how much patent approvers really know about software. The InfoWorld article makes the problem sound like it has to do with WinForms, but the patent specifically states that it has to do with websites. Either way, I don't see this going thru. Vertical is trying to take this to court, but I see a lot of people jumping in to back Microsoft. Not because they think Microsoft came up with any of these patterns and practices on their own, but because everyone has used these same concepts when building applications and frameworks. There's a reason they're called patterns and practices. On the other hand, I don't know if anyone supporting this will help. Looking back at the Eolas patent issues (1
, or on Wikipedia
), none of the supperters did anything. For those who don't know, Eolas is the reason you have to click on some ActiveX controls, like Flash and embedded media players.