Feeds

'We invented Windows 8 Tiles in the 1990s', says firm suing Microsoft

We couldn't get anyone to like them either

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

Microsoft had barely got Windows 8 out the door before it was slapped with a patent lawsuit related to the new OS.

Software and OS design tech firm SurfCast has filed a suit in Maine over Live Tiles, which it says it invented. The company has just four patents, but one of them, filed in 2000 and granted in 2004, deals with a "system and method for simultaneous display of multiple information sources".

Although Microsoft has been going on about Tiles since Windows Phone 7 became available two years ago, the launch of Windows 8, Windows Phone 8 and Surface fondleslabs have spurred the Surfcast to take legal action. Presumably, SurfCast didn't mind Redmond infringing on its patents when it was just Windows Phone 7, but a fully rounded lineup that looks like it could make some good money is the last straw.

Microsoft's Live Tiles sit on a phone (or nowadays a fondletop or desktop) start screen and update with real time information from websites, twitter, photos, email etc.

SurfCast's tiles, as described by its website, are "dynamically updating icons" that do pretty much the same thing.

"A Tile is different from an icon because it can be both selectable and live - containing refreshed content that provides a real-time or near-real-time view of the underlying information," the site says.

The company has complained to the court that not only has Microsoft infringed its tile patent, but it's also encouraging developers to do so by asking them to come up with tiles for their apps.

"We developed the concept of Tiles in the 1990s, which was ahead of its time," Ovid Santoro, CEO of SurfCast, said on the website. "Microsoft's Live Tiles are the centrepiece of its new operation systems and are covered by our patent."

Microsoft had not responded to a request for comment at the time of publication. ®

Remote control for virtualized desktops

More from The Register

next story
Be real, Apple: In-app goodie grab games AREN'T FREE – EU
Cupertino stands down after Euro legal threats
Download alert: Nearly ALL top 100 Android, iOS paid apps hacked
Attack of the Clones? Yeah, but much, much scarier – report
You stupid BRICK! PCs running Avast AV can't handle Windows fixes
Fix issued, fingers pointed, forums in flames
Microsoft: Your Linux Docker containers are now OURS to command
New tool lets admins wrangle Linux apps from Windows
Bada-Bing! Mozilla flips Firefox to YAHOO! for search
Microsoft system will be the default for browser in US until 2020
Facebook, working on Facebook at Work, works on Facebook. At Work
You don't want your cat or drunk pics at the office
Soz, web devs: Google snatches its Wallet off the table
Killing off web service in 3 months... but app-happy bonkers are fine
prev story

Whitepapers

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.
A strategic approach to identity relationship management
ForgeRock commissioned Forrester to evaluate companies’ IAM practices and requirements when it comes to customer-facing scenarios versus employee-facing ones.
5 critical considerations for enterprise cloud backup
Key considerations when evaluating cloud backup solutions to ensure adequate protection security and availability of enterprise data.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Getting ahead of the compliance curve
Learn about new services that make it easy to discover and manage certificates across the enterprise and how to get ahead of the compliance curve.