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LinuxWorld: So, Could Microsoft Ever "Own" XML?

Feb 14, 2004, 10:00 (24 Talkback[s])

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"At LinuxWorld we speculated whether this was 'either a preemptive move against IBM's plan to migrate to Linux on the desktop, a direct challenge to software vendors who want to interoperate with Word through XML, or just a more general confirmation that it is worried about Open Source.' While the XML standard itself remains royalty free, Microsoft seemed intent, we noted, on seeking patent protection for as many specific software implementations that incorporate elements of XML as it could.

"But now comes the news that, right here in the United States, Microsoft has been granted US patent 6,687,897--filed as long ago as December 2000, it should be noted--for 'XML script automation.' In other words, it involves 'systems, methods and data structures for encompassing scripts written in one or more scripting languages in a single file.'

"'This does not, in any way, change the royalty-free nature of the XML standard itself,' a spokesman for the Redmond software giant said yesterday..."

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