Feeds

Microsoft and Autodesk infringed patents, jury rules

z4 Technologies awarded $133m

5 things you didn’t know about cloud backup

An entrepreneur has been awarded $133m by a jury in a Texas courtroom after winning his claim that two of his anti-piracy software patents were infringed by Microsoft's Office and Windows XP, and Autodesk's AutoCAD programs.

David Colvin is founder of z4 Technologies Inc, a digital rights management company based in "Automation Alley", the high-tech centre of Michigan. The company exists to prevent infringement – and on a page of its website includes quotes from both Microsoft and Autodesk about the pest of piracy.

Colvin obtained patents for methods of assigning passwords and codes to individual copies of software to prevent unauthorised use. This week, Microsoft was ordered to pay him $115m and Autodesk $18m. The impact on their respective products is unknown.

Microsoft spokesperson Rachel Wayne told OUT-LAW.COM: "While we are disappointed with this verdict, we continue to contend that there was no infringement of any kind and that the facts in this case show that Microsoft developed its own product activation technologies well before z4 Technologies filed for its patent.

"We will await resolution of all issues by the trial court before we make any decisions."

According to Reuters, Microsoft awaits the court's decision on another point: whether z4 Technologies knowingly withheld information from the US Patent and Trademark Office about other companies' product activation technologies when submitting its patent applications.

In a separate decision earlier this week, a federal appeals court ruled that customers who bought computers with Microsoft's software preinstalled, or who bought its programs through a reseller, can't sue the Redmond company for anti-trust violations. Twenty-six plaintiffs were seeking up to $10bn in damages, but lost because they were indirect purchasers.

See: z4 patents

Copyright © 2006, OUT-LAW.com

OUT-LAW.COM is part of international law firm Pinsent Masons.

5 things you didn’t know about cloud backup

More from The Register

next story
BBC: We're going to slip CODING into kids' TV
Pureed-carrot-in-ice cream C++ surprise
6 Obvious Reasons Why Facebook Will Ban This Article (Thank God)
Clampdown on clickbait ... and El Reg is OK with this
Twitter: La la la, we have not heard of any NUDE JLaw, Upton SELFIES
If there are any on our site it is not our fault as we are not a PUBLISHER
Facebook, Google and Instagram 'worse than drugs' says Miley Cyrus
Italian boffins agree with popette's theory that haters are the real wrecking balls
Sit tight, fanbois. Apple's '$400' wearable release slips into early 2015
Sources: time to put in plenty of clock-watching for' iWatch
Facebook to let stalkers unearth buried posts with mobe search
Prepare to HAUNT your pal's back catalogue
Ex-IBM CEO John Akers dies at 79
An era disrupted by the advent of the PC
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Endpoint data privacy in the cloud is easier than you think
Innovations in encryption and storage resolve issues of data privacy and key requirements for companies to look for in a solution.
Why cloud backup?
Combining the latest advancements in disk-based backup with secure, integrated, cloud technologies offer organizations fast and assured recovery of their critical enterprise data.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?