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Apple's interface held to the fire in dubious suit - Page 2

post #41 of 81
Quote:
Originally Posted by craigd6861 View Post

A patent is good for 20 years from date of filing. The patent in question was filed March 25, 1987.

I thought it was twenty one years from filing, or twenty from approval. Details like that seem to change from time to time, I've forgotten important details, if I haven't, my information is probably old. If it's 20 from filing, then it's already expired.
post #42 of 81
I'm pretty clueless on patent stuff. But the article said that that patent was updated in 1991 by Xerox. Would that change anything? Or is it still 20 years from date of filing/approval?
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post #43 of 81
i hope we don't lose the tabs in finder windows......
post #44 of 81
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ronbo View Post

Whew. Thank God.

Nearly ten minutes had gone by without a pack of lawyers trying to make a wad of cash off the success of others. I was beginning to worry the whole world had gone crazy!

But that ten minutes is over. I can relax now. Musta just been a fluke.

If you counted 10 minutes, then you probably weren't paying attention. I'm sure someone was sued somewhere for violating some patent on..oh, I don't know..."a method for keeping warm by igniting a fuel source to release thermal energy stored in the chemical bonds of organic compounds."

Just a little nit-pick. This lawsuit isn't brought by lawyers per-se. It's is brought by a new breed of American parasite: the intellectual property patent holding company.

Of source, my guess is that these things would be most effective if they were staffed entirely by lawyers...not anyone who actually creates anything. So this is probably just a semantic difference...

I agree. We should ban software patents. Now.

But our current crop of money-grubbing politicians--from both parties--wouldn't dream of doing anything so common-sensical and principled. In fact, they are leading the charge to extend patents around the world, through things like the World Trade Organization, even if they cost people their lives (c.f., drug patents).
post #45 of 81
Quote:
Originally Posted by ajprice View Post

Have to agree with people here, where have they been for the last 2 years?

In other news, I am getting fingers patented, so that anyone who uses fingers has to pay me to do so :P .

Longer than 2 years. There were "interface switching controls" as early as some of the System 7 and System 8 control panels, probably even before. May very well turn out to be an abandoned patent or even prior existing art superseding it on this one.
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post #46 of 81
What's worse is that these companies don't come up with these ideas and patent them, they usually buy them from someone and sit on them. These people just go around buying ancient patents that they realize someone is sort of using so they can sue them. Complete BS.
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post #47 of 81
Is that how you spell when you want to sue someone...oh well.

Come monday, I'm suing apple for the command key .
post #48 of 81
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dr. X View Post

Here is the link to the patent:

User interface with multiple workspaces for sharing display system objects

If that's the correct patent the link with tabs is tenuous. Xerox Workspaces allows you to have a user interface element that links you to another set of windows -- kind of a merger of the idea of a tab and Apple's new Spaces feature -- but in a more sophisticated way. I don't think anyone has actually implemented this exact feature. It's a pity Xerox chose to patent it because that quite likely put a specific brake on its adoption.

If I understand the feature right, you could have a user interface element which switched to a different logical mix of windows (which could include some of the windows currently on the screen), a much more elegant feature than Spaces or the equivalent multiple workspaces features on X windowing systems, which are really just a mechanism for increasing your screen real estate with virtual screens.

For example, if you are using Photoshop in conjunction with a web editor, and are moving between the 2 sets of windows, you could make them into a logical group. You may also be using those same Photoshop pictures to add stills into a movie, and make them into a logical group with your movie editor. You could then have a user interface element which allowed you to toggle between the two groups of windows: Photoshop + web editor, or Photoshop + movie editor.

The user interface element is illustrated as a door in the pictures in the patent (a later version of the idea was called "Rooms" by the PARC researchers who invented it).

The only value in this lawsuit is in reminding us of the idea now that the patent has expired, so we can contemplate implementing it -- I have seen no evidence that anyone has actually implemented anything close to the actual Xerox PARC innovation. (A patent for Rooms was filed on 27 February 1995, so maybe we will have to wait until 2015 before we can actually see this implemented anywhere ...)

A classic example of why software patents are idiotic even when they do protect a valid innovation. In this case, the patents have protected the idea from being used. Nice one, Xerox. Not only have you not been able to make anything of this (as usual) but you've sold it to a lawsuit factory. I see no chance that this lawsuit will succeed if Apple has halfway decent lawyers (a nice change for them to have to defend a meritless attack rather than taking on bloggers).

Philip Machanick creator of Opinionations and Green Grahamstown
Department of Computer Science, Rhodes University, South Africa

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Philip Machanick creator of Opinionations and Green Grahamstown
Department of Computer Science, Rhodes University, South Africa

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post #49 of 81
When your business plan sucks, sue.
post #50 of 81
wtf...they decided to do this now? lol what the hell took so long
Mac Pro - 2 x 2.66 - 250GB HDD - 500GB HDD - 4GB Ram - 2x Super Drives - Bluetooth/Airport Extreme - ATI Radeon x1900 512MB - 23" HD Cinema Display
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post #51 of 81
if i read this patent right....

They need to sue a lot of people, because it sounds like even having a link on a webpage that you click and loads another webpage in the same window... is violating... I think they should just turn off the internet!
post #52 of 81
Quote:
Originally Posted by Shadow Slayer 26 View Post

Ummm...doesn't Windows use tabs? Firefox? Almost every new piece of software coming out? Give me a break here, why does everyone come after Apple in these crazy stupid patent infringments?

They "come after" Apple because they are jealous, and think that people are stupid enough to enforce these. Ha!. These upstart ass**les havent got a leg to stand on!!

And another point: software patents are a load of crap. All they do is:
1. create monopolys.
2. and stiffle innovation!
post #53 of 81
Quote:
Originally Posted by wilco View Post

The only thing more predictable than these frivolous law suits are the knee-jerk reactions from AppleInsider's "legal experts".

In other news, I am getting fingers patented, so that anyone who uses fingers has to pay me to do so :P .


That is so funny! And original!

Are you a tax man by any chance?
post #54 of 81
No worry about this one. If past lawsuits are any indication, Apple will end up paying the patent owner a pittance but in the process will gain partial ownership of the idea and will force the patent owner to go after others who have unlawfully used the idea (i.e., MS) and if they fail to do that then the patent owner will have to come over to Apple corporate campus every Friday to polish Steve's shoes and clean the employee cafeteria with a toothbrush.

After Creative and Apple Corp, I'm not sure why anyone would want to be on the "winning" end of a lawsuit against Apple.
post #55 of 81
The Patent System should be revised that when one is filing a specific piece of IP it has to explicitly demonstrate all forseen applications of this IP, at the time of filing.

Any future applications not forseen should have to explicitly demonstrate their domain of applications as well. The first filer would only be capable of declaring infringement if those that follow explicitly utilize this IP within their domain of applications. The same goes for the second, third, so on and so forth.

The idea may expand with the ingenuity of its applicable domains and not hold any absolute power over all future potential applicable areas of business and advancement.
post #56 of 81
Quote:
Originally Posted by Shadow Slayer 26 View Post

Ummm...doesn't Windows use tabs? Firefox? Almost every new piece of software coming out? Give me a break here, why does everyone come after Apple in these crazy stupid patent infringments?

Agreed, and I think I know what's going on.

Bill Gates dresses up in a brown trench coat with a matching hat. He then walks in the dark allies in the rain to drop of an anonymous paper package tied with tweed. Inside, paperwork pointing fingers at Apple with SUE THEM stamped in red on every sheet.
post #57 of 81
What's this? Xerox PARC traveling back in time to cash in on the ideas Steve Jobs borrowed from the Star on his visit back in the 1970's?
post #58 of 81
The problem isn't with companies that invent ideas, patent them, but never produce a product. The problem is with companies whose whole business model is based on buying other companes patents and enforcing them. It's literally a litigation business model. It's really no better than opening shop as a personal injury lawyer.

Patent law is a very good thing. It DOES increase innovation because it gives the assurance that if you invent an idea, someone else can't just come along and profit off it without licensing it from you. That's a pretty big deal really.

That says nothing of the countless "trolls." I agree that these companies should be prohibited from collecting patents and litigating for a profit. I'm not sure the answer - or the best way to prevent it, but it is certainly disgusting.
post #59 of 81
I'm going to agree that this lawsuit sound pretty frivolous, but I would point out that how obvious a development is now is irrelevant to the case at hand under patent law. Tabs are obvious now because that's the way we've done things and they seem natural. When they were first created they were not so obvious. (And no, tabbed physical folders are not a good analogue at all, despite what some folks here think. Any patent lawyer worth his beans would gut that one in, oh, about thirty seconds.)

Given ten years or so of practice, we lose the ability to see what was an innovation at the time. It should be obvious to folks that patents are not granted with foreknowledge of where technology will head, but these discussions inevitably turn into people blasting patents from the past for being so obvious now. If they really were so obvious then, why wasn't everyone already doing whatever was being patented? Give it ten years and a lot of what apple has done for the iPhone's interface will seem obvious and there will be people who will rant about how stupid it was to grant patent for some of its features, even though now we're blown away by the innovation...

There are real problems with IP law in the U.S. (the excessive term, the lack of competence in the Patent Office to evaluate innovation, a cumbersome process to assert prior art, the cottage industry of patent squatters who ram through patents that are excessively broad by the standards of the time and then wait for someone to infringe). This case points some of these problems out (such as selling patents to holding companies that exist for no reason other than law suits and provide no apparent service to the patent creators), but the argument that it was an "obvious" patent doesn't fly in court since the standard is whether it was an innovation at the time.

-Fenevad
post #60 of 81
Quote:
Originally Posted by fenevad View Post

I'm going to agree that this lawsuit sound pretty frivolous, but I would point out that how obvious a development is now is irrelevant to the case at hand under patent law. Tabs are obvious now because that's the way we've done things and they seem natural. When they were first created they were not so obvious. (And no, tabbed physical folders are not a good analogue at all, despite what some folks here think. Any patent lawyer worth his beans would gut that one in, oh, about thirty seconds.)

If you think that the analogy doesn't fit, please state your case. The only difference I see is added interactivity, but the basic concept is the same, store lots of information in a smaller area.
post #61 of 81
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bergermeister View Post

Give it a rest, Wilco.

Is there a "statute of limitations" or comparable thing in patent cases? Don't they have to show that they have used the same patent within a certain period?

Nope. The patent holder is free to pick and choose which alleged infringements they want to go after.

Quote:
(What was that stuff about the iPhone?)

That was a trademark on the combination of letters which come together to spell the word "iPhone", not a patent on the concept of a particular breed of wireless phone device.

There are different rules regarding the defence of trademarks as opposed to patents.

Quote:
What does this tiny company do, anyway?

Apparently, it buys the rights to certain technologies, then sits around until it finds a lucrative opportunity to make some money off it, by waiting for others to commercialize the idea (and even waiting until it's so tightly integrated into the product that it would be crippling to remove it midstream) and then demanding compensation.

NTP recently did this with RIM's Blackberry. Despite the fact that all of the patents in question have been provisionally rejected (and two have been finally rejected) by the USPTO, RIM still decided it would be better business in the long run to just pay a licensing fee and be done with it. RIM is still actively litigating to have those patent rejections upheld on appeal, even though their settlement has protected them from further attacks by NTP.

Sometimes a patent is truly protecting a novel invention. If so, then the patent holder is fully within its rights to expect compensation for the use of their ideas.

Sometimes, as the USPTO has decided is the case in the NTP vs RIM case, the patent is later found to be invalid -- that is to say, if all the facts had been available to the examiner at the time the patent was originally being reviewed for acceptance, it probably wouldn't have been allowed in the first place. Even in that case, there's still no guarantee that the patent holder won't still get compensated.
post #62 of 81
Quote:
Originally Posted by JeffDM View Post

If you think that the analogy doesn't fit, please state your case. The only difference I see is added interactivity, but the basic concept is the same, store lots of information in a smaller area.

That basic concept ("store lots of information in a smaller area") is immensely broad and would apply to all kinds of things, like file compression, thumbnails of photos. I'm not trying to be pedantic here, but patent law is pedantic. Broad similarities don't matter because patents are to be narrowly tailored. The patent is for the application of an idea ot a particular medium and interface. You can put tabs on paper folders all day long, but that does not mean that the extension to an electronic user interface is intuititive or covered by prior art. Really, a good patent lawyer would gut that objection in less time than it takes him/her to blink.

Superficial similarity is not enough to invalidate a patent, and all the analogy to paper folders has is superficial similarity. Using tabs on a folder in a filing cabinet to locate a particular folder is much more like having names for folders sitting on your desktop. While having tabs on panes of information contained within a single display unit may be conceived as metaphorically like having tabs on folders, the metaphorical extension of an idea like that does not invalidate a patent. Again, it is obvious in retrospect, but legally there is no basis to invalidate a patent for something to do with panes in a window on a computer screen because people put tabs on folders. It may seem obvious to readers, but legally, there is no basis to invalidate on those grounds.

And again, if it were so obvious, why didn't everyone do it automatically? It is obvious and similar only in hindsight...

-Fenevad
post #63 of 81
Quote:
Originally Posted by bdkennedy1 View Post

Apple took an idea that's 20 years old and probably never been used, and innovated on it.

"never been used"? Only if you consider Microsoft to be the totality of "everything". IBM's OS/2 had tabs all over the place, starting in version 2.0. This was released in March, 1992.

OS/2 was, I think the first mainstream commercial product to use tabs.

If we want to go to a more generic concept of an on-screen control (like radio buttons) determining the content of a windows, that can be found in Sun's OpenLook window manager back in the late 80's. (Look at the desktop preferences dialog for an example - a drop-down menu selects each category of options, which are displayed in the remainder of the window.)

For that matter, the Mac OS control panel from System 6 (1988) probably counts. It was a single window with a vertical column of icons down the left side. Clicking an icon caused the right side of the window to be replaced with configuration controls.
Quote:
Originally Posted by EagerDragon View Post

Clicking a section of the screen and having some other content painted over the content currently being shown is very basic and obvious. Not that much difference between a button and a tab.

It's obvious today. It wasn't nearly so obvious in 1987.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Macvault View Post

Tabs? What "tabs"??? Would somebody enlighten me how Mac OS X Tiger makes use of tabs?

System Preferences -> Network. Two different kinds of the "tab" concept. You have the "Show" drop-down list for selecting multiple pages of content (Network Status, Network Port Configuration, and a page per port.) Each port-based page contains multiple tabbed-panels (TCP/IP, PPPoE, AppleTalk, Proxies, Ethernet).

There are many other examples.
Quote:
Originally Posted by philipm View Post

A classic example of why software patents are idiotic even when they do protect a valid innovation. In this case, the patents have protected the idea from being used. Nice one, Xerox. Not only have you not been able to make anything of this (as usual) but you've sold it to a lawsuit factory.

Unfortunately, Xerox has a terrible history of inventing incredible stuff and then doing nothing with it.

They invented the GUI, and ignored it (leaving it to Apple, Microsoft and others to make mainstream products.) Ditto for Ethernet (made popular by Bob Metcalfe, founder of 3Com), PostScript (Adobe), object oriented programming, the SmallTalk language, etc., etc. About the only thing from PARC that they didn't ignore was the laser printer, because that fit within their business model of selling copiers.
post #64 of 81
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

An Illinois-based company and its Nevada partner have filed a lawsuit against Apple Inc., alleging that Mac OS X 10.4 "Tiger" treads on an interface patent that affects the operating system's nearly universal use of tabs.

Little-known intellectual property agency IP Innovation LLC and its parent Technology Licensing Corporation this week became the latest to claim that Apple had abused a patent they hold.

Filed April 18th in a US district court in Marshall, Texas -- a town frequently recognized as the preferred home for lawsuits by companies that hoard property claims -- the four-page formal complaint purports that Apple has engaged in "willful and deliberate" infringement of a computer control patent by selling its current Tiger operating system.

IP Innovation is demanding a jury trial and asks for reparations for perceived damages which "exceed $20 million," according to the suit. It also seeks an injunction that would prevent the California-based defendant from infringing on the patent, essentially blocking Apple from continuing to sell its current edition of Mac OS X and any future editions that might draw on the supposed infringements.

The reported violation is an exceptionally specific one. It refers to a single US Patent Office filing originally made by Xerox researchers for a "User Interface with Multiple Workspaces for Sharing Display System Objects" -- and, in turn, a lone claim within that patent.

The disputed section refers to the technique of creating a window on a computer's screen with controls that switch between views of multiple associated display objects within the window, erasing one view as the user selects another while still giving a spatial frame of reference and the same general interface during the switch.

While IP Innovation doesn't refer to any one feature of the Mac OS as copying the interface technique, the central claim may potentially apply to any of several approaches to navigating software used by Apple in Finder and its companion program. Category dividers triggered by Spotlight searches, as well as page tabs in the Safari web browser, bear the closest similarity to the now 20-year-old description.

Apple's Spaces virtual desktop feature set to arrive in Mac OS X Leopard would not be affected by the conditions of the immediate lawsuit.

Numerous questions remain unanswered in the legal motion and the associated patent, including subjects of prior art, ownership, and timing. Originally filed in 1987, the patent was last updated in December of 1991 with Xerox as the lone corporate owner -- nearly 14 years before the allegedly infringing software was released. The plaintiff in the new case has also chosen to make its case almost exactly two years after Tiger's April 2005 introduction and just months before the projected October release of Leopard, which should phase Tiger out of the market.

Regardless of the individual merits of the case, Apple has so far chosen to remain silent on the matter after having received notice of the impending court case earlier this week.


It seems that our patent system is not working anymore. Now it seems that anyone can get a patent for anything even though they don't use the technology or even create the technology and then use it for profit via the courts system. I think the patent system should only give a patent to the actual inventor/creator for a technology that will actually be used in a product. If not then it should not be given out and no legal profits can be made from it.
post #65 of 81
Quote:
Originally Posted by JeffDM View Post

If you think that the analogy doesn't fit, please state your case. The only difference I see is added interactivity, but the basic concept is the same, store lots of information in a smaller area.

To be a little more precise in my response, the problem is that tabs on folders are useful for locating physically discrete items that are physically arranged in some sequence, such as a stack or a drawer. Accessing the contents, however, requires that the folder then be pulled, opened, and items physically removed (or viewed inside the folder). Each folder can contain multiple documents. The precise analogy here is to the notion of named directories containing files in a filing system, not to tabbed UI panes, which deal with the display of information, but to the organization of information. The two are related, but not directly connected, i.e., data structures and data displays do not necessarily entail each other.

The comparison between UI tabs and tabbed folders would work if you touched the tab of the folder in some sort of system and the physical folder was brought to the front and its contents displayed to you without the need to physically displace anything. Simply having a named index marker on the exterior of a physical folder tells you nothing about how the contents of that folder are to be displayed or what is to be done with it. Tabbed UIs, on the other hand, rely on a very specific sequence of events if the pane contents are to be displayed, and those events have basically no connection to anything analogous to a physical system.

The closest thing I can think of as an analog to tabbed panes are those display systems that rotate sheets with ads in and out of a fixed display space, but even that is a rather poor analogy (albeit much closer in a display aspect than tabbed folders). The point is that we can see an apparent connection in hindsight, but if tabbed panes didn't exist already it is not a trivial leap to go from tabbed folders to tabbed panes.
post #66 of 81
Quote:
Originally Posted by shamino View Post

"never been used"? Only if you consider Microsoft to be the totality of "everything". IBM's OS/2 had tabs all over the place, starting in version 2.0. This was released in March, 1992.

OS/2 was, I think the first mainstream commercial product to use tabs.

If we want to go to a more generic concept of an on-screen control (like radio buttons) determining the content of a windows, that can be found in Sun's OpenLook window manager back in the late 80's. (Look at the desktop preferences dialog for an example - a drop-down menu selects each category of options, which are displayed in the remainder of the window.)

For that matter, the Mac OS control panel from System 6 (1988) probably counts. It was a single window with a vertical column of icons down the left side. Clicking an icon caused the right side of the window to be replaced with configuration controls.
It's obvious today. It wasn't nearly so obvious in 1987.
[...]

There are many other examples.
Unfortunately, Xerox has a terrible history of inventing incredible stuff and then doing nothing with it.

[...]

According to wikipedia, Sun used tabs in their NeWS window manager... don't have first hand knowledge there, but SGI licensed NeWS and I have a fairly clear recollection of a tabbed application selector on a Personal Iris. This was in 1988.

The Xerox patent was filed in March of 1987, the IBM publication mentioned earlier was published in December of 1987 in conjunction with the release of OS/2. So fairly clearly IBM and Xerox, and Sun were all working on tabs as part of their interfaces in roughly the same time frame.

Hypercard was earlier than 1987, but I believe the "tabs" there were full width, so not as space efficient.

The patent doen't look like it is a trivial one.. as mentioned the main point is a way to manage multiple workspaces. One of the inventors, Stuart Card, is one of the big names in UI design and human factors research, which also inclines me to give them the benefit of the doubt, even though I haven't read through the entire patent.

I may be wrong, but I doubt that the original inventors intended to patent tabs in an interface generically... they were trying to protect the specific application though.
post #67 of 81
Quote:
Originally Posted by JeffDM View Post

I thought it was twenty one years from filing, or twenty from approval. Details like that seem to change from time to time, I've forgotten important details, if I haven't, my information is probably old. If it's 20 from filing, then it's already expired.

It's currently 20 years... it was 17 years at the time of filing (changed in 1995). The 1991 date has to be the operative one then... so the thing will expire in a year.
post #68 of 81
Filed in Marshall, TX? Good, I can literally ride my bicycle (save gas) over there & slap them.
post #69 of 81
I smell a microsoft rat!
post #70 of 81
I really don't know if this is directly applicable, but apparently the Apple Lisa had used something like what we know as tabs, and even used the manila folder tab shape:

http://www.folklore.org/projects/Mac...laroids.14.jpg
post #71 of 81
Quote:
Originally Posted by JeffDM View Post

I really don't know if this is directly applicable, but apparently the Apple Lisa had used something like what we know as tabs, and even used the manila folder tab shape:

http://www.folklore.org/projects/Mac...laroids.14.jpg

Jeff,

Good archeologic find! Lisa with a tabbed display! You realise that Lisa is older than a lot of board members here.
post #72 of 81
While it doesn't use "tabs" the Control Panel in System 4.0 used a list of icons to switch between a series of options grouped by type. These options kept their state when the user switched back and forth between them. I'd say this would most certainly qualify for prior art.

http://www.guidebookgallery.org/screenshots/macos42

The screenshots are from version 4.2, which was released in October of 87. However, the GUIdebook says 4.0 was released in, you guessed it, March of 87.

However, I've also found documentation that says March date was the hardware release. The 4.0 system software was released on 1/87. The URL is here...

http://homepage.mac.com/chinesemac/earlymacs/

The question becomes when was 4.0 really released and did it have the same Control Panel interface as 4.2?

If this Control Panel UI was released in 1/87, it appears that Apple has this covered.
post #73 of 81
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lightandshadow View Post

While it doesn't use "tabs" the Control Panel in System 4.0 used a list of icons to switch between a series of options grouped by type. These options kept their state when the user switched back and forth between them. I'd say this would most certainly qualify for prior art.

http://www.guidebookgallery.org/screenshots/macos42

The screenshots are from version 4.2, which was released in October of 87. However, the GUIdebook says 4.0 was released in, you guessed it, March of 87.

However, I've also found documentation that says March date was the hardware release. The 4.0 system software was released on 1/87. The URL is here...

http://homepage.mac.com/chinesemac/earlymacs/

The question becomes when was 4.0 really released and did it have the same Control Panel interface as 4.2?

If this Control Panel UI was released in 1/87, it appears that Apple has this covered.

The date of software release isn't the magic date. The date the applicable files were first coded is and that is necessarily before the release date. That will show when the that particular art was no longer "non-obvious" and into the realm of the obvious.
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post #74 of 81
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lightandshadow View Post

While it doesn't use "tabs" the Control Panel in System 4.0 used a list of icons to switch between a series of options grouped by type. These options kept their state when the user switched back and forth between them. I'd say this would most certainly qualify for prior art.

http://www.guidebookgallery.org/screenshots/macos42

The screenshots are from version 4.2, which was released in October of 87. However, the GUIdebook says 4.0 was released in, you guessed it, March of 87.

Thanks for this info. I knew System 6 used this style control panel, because I used to use System 6 on a regular basis, but I never worked with older versions of the system.

The original mac OS control panel (see screen-shot on Wikipedia) was a single panel. I don't know precisely when the system switched from that to the System 6-like control panel (which, as you point out, was in 4.2).

I remember an old Apple developer CD that contained floppy images for all of the legacy (pre-6) system software images. None of them will boot on a modern Mac (most wouldn't boot on an SE, which is what I had when I saw that CD, years ago), but if anybody here has that CD, it should be possible to browse around those old system folders with ResEdit to see when the control panel changed.
post #75 of 81
Quote:
Originally Posted by shamino View Post

None of them will boot on a modern Mac (most wouldn't boot on an SE, which is what I had when I saw that CD, years ago), but if anybody here has that CD, it should be possible to browse around those old system folders with ResEdit to see when the control panel changed.

However, It's likely that you could boot them inside an emulator.
post #76 of 81
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lightandshadow View Post

However, It's likely that you could boot them inside an emulator.

Depends on what's being emulated. I haven't seen anything that emulates a Mac older than the Plus.

The earliest systems will only boot on a 128K Mac.
post #77 of 81
You don't think there are plenty of those siting around still? All it takes is one operable Fat Mac and all can be answered. But even better will be Apples source archives and internal documentation.
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post #78 of 81
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hiro View Post

You don't think there are plenty of those siting around still? All it takes is one operable Fat Mac and all can be answered. But even better will be Apples source archives and internal documentation.

128's? Most of them were landfilled a long time ago.

But you don't need source code to prove this. You just need a copy of ResEdit (still a free download from Apple) to open the resource forks of the various System Folder files and look for the GUI elements that comprise the control panel.
post #79 of 81
Quote:
Originally Posted by shamino View Post

128's? Most of them were landfilled a long time ago.

But you don't need source code to prove this. You just need a copy of ResEdit (still a free download from Apple) to open the resource forks of the various System Folder files and look for the GUI elements that comprise the control panel.

There's an operable Fat Mac (512) right downstairs from me (not mine). Sits on the shelf except for oohh ahhh time but it works. I'm sure Apple has a couple and there are several other places I'm sure a lawyer can get use of one. Maybe not touch it himself, but get a docent to run it.
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post #80 of 81
Quote:
Originally Posted by craigd6861 View Post

A patent is good for 20 years from date of filing. The patent in question was filed March 25, 1987.

Technicality -- some patents (e.g. this one) are good for 17 years from the issue date:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Term_of..._United_States

This would bring it out to 2008. However, the concept of "laches" enters the
fray if there is no attempt to enforce a patent for six years.
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