--- "Carlos Y. Villalpando" <unbelver at us.netrek.org> wrote:

> Quoting Dave Ahn <ahn at orion.netrek.org>:
> > A number of key netrek contributors were involved in
> this law suit
> > including myself.
> Dave and I were interviewed by the defendant's IP
> attourneys vi e-mail
> and face to face during the Spring/Summer of 2000.  We
> showed them
> what the game was, how it worked, and the technical
> background of the
> game and code overview.  I was interviewed for about 4
> hours or so at
> my home and I gave them an explanation of the game as it
> related to
> the Plaintiff's patent claims.  The pdf Dave gave a link
> to does a
> good job describing what the patent claims were about and
> how Netrek
> related. 
> After they were done with Dave and I, they were extremely
> excited, so
> we pointed them to the Netrek history Gurus and founders
> for the
> authoritative "Yes, this was going on before the patent
> was filed"
> statements, (Kevin Smith, et al.)  They apparently got
> the
> declarations they needed from them.
> Afterwards, I was interviewed again for about 2 hours as
> a final loose
> end wrap-up.  I got a nice dinner out of that one.
> We asked for, and received permission to do a Slashdot
> story along the
> lines of "Netrek helps kill a stupid patent", but I
> believe we decided
> not to when we heard the case was settled instead of
> having the patent
> invalidated.  Since the patent was still in force, we
> thought it best
> to lay low since they could come after Netrek.
> > If you search vanilla-list, there should be some
> archived messages
> > about this issue.
> Dave, after the initial query by Chawla and the initial
> responses,
> you, James, and I decided to not tell the rest of the
> Netrek community
> what was going on after we found out who the interested
> parties
> were. So there's not much on the vanilla-l archive.
> Most of our discussions were via IRC, though we did have
> some e-mail
> interactions.  For some odd reason, I didn't save my half
> of the
> emails, just you quoting me.

Very interesting! Perhaps it's best to let sleeping dogs
lie? If this Harvard project launches another challenge to
the patent could this not cause the patent holder to take
legal action against netrek a la SCO's case against Linux
kernel? Or if the worst case happened could we not nullify
the patent by some minor code changes? 



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