Thursday, December 21, 2006

Oh, now I'm disgusted

Redmond 068
Originally uploaded by Sippy Cup.
Now Anne Broache over at CNET has posted about the RSS patent. From her article:
Redmond actually filed for the patents on June 21, 2005. That date, incidentally, is just three days prior to the company's formal announcement that it planned to build support for RSS into the next version of its Internet Explorer browser and into its planned Windows Vista operating system--then referred to as Longhorn.

Jane Kim, program manager for RSS in Internet Explorer, detailed those features in a blog entry last year. Kim and her colleague Amar Gandhi, who serves as group program manager of the Windows RSS team, are among the inventors listed on both applications.

RSS is typically used by news publishers, bloggers and podcasters to notify subscribers of new postings. Web users can choose from a number of freeware applications to collect and read those feeds.

If granted, one proposed patent would cover "finding and consuming Web subscriptions in a Web browser." The invention, for example, could allow a user to "subscribe to a particular Web feed, be provided with a user interface that contains distinct indicia to identify new feeds, and...efficiently consume or read RSS feeds using both an RSS reader and a Web browser."

A related application, titled "content syndication platform," appears to describe a system that can break down feeds into a format that can be accessed and managed by many different types of applications and users.

Let's hope there's a strong documentation of prior art and obviousness.

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