Sunday, December 02, 2007

Interesting things are coming to light regarding the company that filed the patent-infringement suit against OLPC, for the way their multilingual keyboards handle Nigerian characters.

First of all, the company that filed the suit is run by a man who spent time in a US prison for bank fraud.

Second of all, the patent appears to have expired in August, 2006. Last time I looked at a calendar, that's more than a year ago. How can someone file suit over an expired patent? (View the entire 7-page patent by tweaking the URL; the individual pages can be found on URLs ranging from ADE_OYEGBOLA1.pdf through ADE_OYEGBOLA7.pdf .)

Personally, I'm unconvinced of the merit of this suit. It strikes me as someone who's trying to pry some money out of the pocket of a company that they perceive as a rival (since they've designed another keyboard to handle Nigerian characters). Way to go, rocket surgeon... filing suit on an expired patent against a non-profit organization. Yeah, there's a ton of free money to be made there. :rolleyes:

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