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RE: Sun IPR statement on XPointer

At 12:08 PM -0500 4/25/01, Bullard, Claude L (Len) wrote:
Amateur interpretation:

o  Sun believes it can defend the patent.

Actually, if their technical people have clue 1, they cannot believe 
this. I suspect what they believe is what you said later, that no one 
will bother fighting them. The patent is so utterly bogus there's not 
the faintest chance they could defend it against a halfway competent 
attack. I personally implemented 3 systems, each at least 3 years 
prior to their application, that "infringe" it.

If you read the patent broadly enough for XPointer to infringe, then 
HTML infringes it as well. Sun is clearly counting on not having to 
fight it (sadly, given the way patent law is set up, that's a good 
bet -- the reason we have myriad patents this foolish).

o  If XPointer is withdrawn, the IPR offer is void.

I think the wording makes us safe vs. this. Note:

At 6:06 PM -0400 4/24/01, Eve L. Maler wrote:
that are owned or controlled by Sun *at any time while* XPointer
is on the Recommendation track *or after* XPointer has been adopted as a

so once we go REC, they can't change it.

I am, however, worried about the wording failing to cover the case 
where Sun sells the patent to somebody else. It is only *Sun* 
undertaking not to sue. If they create a 'Sun XPointer Suing Company" 
and sell it the patent for $1, then SXSC can sue, right?

o  Any attempt to create another specification to fill the role of 
XPointer will
     be subject to the same patent claims without the protection of 
the IPR offer.

Of course; the holders of bogus patents almost never renounce them, 
or allow them to go far enough in court to be legally invalidated; 
they try to settle first and have the case closed, so any later 
people have to fight it all over again.

Steven_DeRose@Brown.edu; http://www.stg.brown.edu/~sjd
Chief Scientist, Brown Univ. Scholarly Technology Group
Adjunct Associate Professor, Computer Science