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   An other /%?/&*" patent - help requested from the community.

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  • From: Didier PH Martin <martind@netfolder.com>
  • To: Xml-Dev <xml-dev@xml.org>
  • Date: Thu, 27 Jul 2000 07:37:34 -0400


This morning I received a proud announcement of a company advertising their
new patent pending on guess what? Dynamic aggregation. Due to the well known
zeal the US patent bureau to do a good to check any prior work :-)), I am
afraid that this company will get the patent approved by the bureau, even if
the technique is well known, published in several articles (including mine)
and used by XML practitioners in their day to day tasks.

Here is the extract I received:
Information Architects (NASDAQ: IARC) today announced it has a patent
pending for dynamic syndication business method and underlying SmartCodeŽ
dynamic syndication technology. Dynamic syndication is widely seen as the
emerging business model for Internet business applications from interactive
television to trading hubs and exchanges....
This patent pending process enables our customers to access multiple content
sources simultaneously and syndicate their presentation in very customized
formats. Not only will its flexibility create stronger synergies with our
partners, such as Interwoven (NASDAQ: IWOV) and Art Technologies Group
(NASDAQ: ATG), but it will lead the e-marketplace into the future," said

Off course this company is convinced or try to convince the world that they
invented the cookie cutter. to prevent that one member of our community (the
XML developers community) get sued because this member used any dynamic
aggregation with XSLT (using the document function) or used the xinclude
construct to do so, I request the help of this community to:

- provide a pointer on where we can find the text describing this patent
pending stuff (for a complete exam)
- If somebody knows any previous work or any published material (articles,
specs, emails, etc...) mentioning the technique to dynamically aggregate
content using markup technologies. Please let us know.

The goal is to "aggregate" this info, send it to the patent bureau (but I
have no great hopes that they will be more zealous than before after having
received the document :-). But mostly, the goal is to keep the document
posted and accessible to this community so that any member of the XML dev
community (in fact anyone) can refer to it, in case this company would use
their right to sue such XML developer who did used dynamic aggregation or
used the technique in any product. The document would help any member of
this community to be Well armed against a patent system that unfortunately
is out of order.

Cheers and many thanks for you help.
Didier PH Martin
Email: martind@netfolder.com
Conferences: xml devconf 2000 (http://www.xmldevconf2000.com)
Book: XML Professional (http://www.wrox.com)
column: Style Matters (http://www.xml.com)
Products: http://www.netfolder.com


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