What to make of Microsoft's Office patent flop
Dec 24, 2009, 10:03 (0 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Stephen Shankland)
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"It seems that Microsoft knew all along that they were
going to get hit like a drum by i4i when the Canadian company won
its XML patent lawsuit. Of course, that isn't what Microsoft said
when the judge ordered Microsoft to pay i4i $290-million and stop
selling any version of Word or Office that could create .XML, .DOCX
or .DOCM files that contained custom XML formatting. But, now
Microsoft has run up the white flag and the company is frantically
jerking the feature out of its currently shipping Office programs.
"Now, part of me wants to say it couldn't have happened to a
nicer company. After all, Microsoft loves to play the bully with
its own patent portfolio. Earlier this year, Microsoft used its
patents like a sledgehammer on TomTom, the GPS device company.
"I also find it more than a little funny to see how Microsoft
was crying about how unfair it all was not just to Microsoft but,
as Microsoft's lawyers put it at the time, to all the little people
out there "who require new copies of Office and Word would be
stranded without an alternative set of software.""
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