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Microsoft petitions for second look at Word XML decision

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Microsoft has asked US judges to take a second look at their ruling that confirmed the software giant would be fined $240m for patent infringements in Word.

The company has filed a petition with the US Court of Appeals for both a rehearing by both a panel and the full set of judges presiding over the case.

The US appeals court in December upheld a verdict from May that Microsoft had infringed on software maker i4i's patents covering custom XML in Word. Microsoft was ordered to pay $240m and given until January 11 to remove the offending code from copies of Office.

Microsoft's Friday petition detailed what the company called "significant conflicts" that last month's ruling creates with "established precedents covering trial procedure and the determination of damages.

"We are concerned that the decision weakens judges' authority to apply appropriate safeguards in future patent trials," Microsoft said.

The company added it planned to continue to comply with the January 11 injunction. Microsoft has so far delivered a patch for US OEMs to remove the offending XML from Office 2007.

"After this patch is installed, Word will no longer read the Custom XML elements contained within DOCX, DOCM, or XML files," said Microsoft in an advisory note released in October.

There was no comment from i4i on the Microsoft petition. ®

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