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January 4, 1992
Birtcher Medical Systems Inc. said Friday that it has won a permanent injunction to protect its patent on a surgical device. The court victory is a boost to Birtcher, as sales of its device--the Argon Beam Coagulator--generated more than one-fifth of the company's total revenue last fiscal year. A federal jury in Colorado had ruled in October that Beacon Laboratories Inc. of Denver had violated Birtcher's patent on the coagulator, but declined to award Birtcher damages.
April 6, 2014 | By Ronald D. White
Matthew Vella certainly doesn't look like a troll. Vella is the regular-guy chief executive of Acacia Research Corp., which calls itself a patent outsource licensing company. The Newport Beach firm links up with inventors who fear that others are elbowing in on their patents or whose patents aren't making the money they could. "Our clients often can't afford to hire specialists that will help turn those patents into money," Vella said. "They are not looking to sell them necessarily, but if they are looking to get money because people are infringing their patents, we want to be their partner.
June 20, 2012 | By Salvador Rodriguez
Yahoo and Facebook have entered settlement talks for a lawsuit involving alleged patent infringements by both companies, according to a recent court filing. Lawyers from Yahoo asked a U.S. District judge in San Francisco to provide a two-week extension on reply deadlines as well as a two-week postponement for a scheduled August hearing so the companies can continue their settlement talks. “The parties are currently engaged in settlement negotiations to resolve this dispute,” Kevin Smith, a Yahoo lawyer, said in the filing according to Bloomberg , which broke the news.
March 31, 2014 | By Andrea Chang
In an early win for BlackBerry, a start-up co-founded by Ryan Seacrest has been banned from selling its iPhone keyboard. BlackBerry sued Typo Products in January, alleging that Typo's iPhone case -- which includes a physical keyboard -- copies BlackBerry's hardware and infringes on its patents. In a 24-page court order Friday, a federal judge in San Francisco granted BlackBerry's motion for a preliminary injunction, ruling that the Canadian smartphone maker "has established a likelihood of proving that Typo infringes the patents at issue and Typo has not presented a substantial question of the validity of those patents.
July 6, 2012 | By Jessica Guynn
Yahoo and Facebook have put down their arms and are settling a bitter legal fight over patents, preempting a nasty court battle between two Silicon Valley giants who used to be on much friendlier terms. The truce calls for a deeper advertising partnership between the companies and cross-licensing of patents, but no money will change hands, according to All Things D which was first to report the news. Charging a violation of patents, Yahoo, at the direction of since-ousted Chief Executive Scott Thompson, sued Facebook, one of its biggest rivals for advertising dollars, in March, two months before the social networking company's stock market debut.
September 6, 2012 | By Janet I. Tu
SEATTLE - Darth Vader is supposed to be menacing. But when Horacio Gutierrez, Microsoft's deputy counsel of intellectual property and licensing, dressed up as the ominous Star Wars Sith Lord one Halloween? Not so much. "I've never seen a happier Darth Vader," said Gutierrez's boss, Microsoft general counsel Brad Smith. In some ways that image captures perceptions of Microsoft in the patent battles now raging among tech companies - and Gutierrez's role in them. Microsoft has signed a number of licensing agreements with - or filed lawsuits against - companies it says infringe on its patents, most notably manufacturers of devices using Google's Android operating system.
March 22, 2012 | By Deborah Netburn
Are you struggling with a multiremote system at home? Do you wish you could control your television, DVR and DVD player with one single remote that wouldn't be a pain to program? Do you think that remote should be your iPhone? Then get psyched: On Thursday Patently Apple turned up a patent filed by Apple that shows the company is hard at work designing the remote control of your dreams. Apple's patent, which the company filed in the third quarter of 2010, would allow you to take a picture of an existing piece of electronic equipment - your television for example, and send it to the iCloud, where Apple would determine the type of device you want to control as well as the make and the model of that device.
January 25, 1999 | JONATHAN GAW
A Pasadena company plans to launch the first Internet-based auction for patented intellectual property. Patent & License Exchange, or PLX, said it will open its site this summer, allowing patent holders to find buyers for the patents through an auction format. The company hopes to take advantage of the growing online business-to-business market that many believe will eclipse online retail applications.
April 15, 2013 | By Peter D. Meldrum
In their April 12 Op-Ed article " Who should own DNA? All of us ," Marcy Darnovsky and Karuna Jaggar write about Myriad's patents on BRCA1 and BRCA2, the so-called breast cancer genes (which were under review Monday at the U.S. Supreme Court), as if they have served little purpose in the development of tests that have helped more than 1 million women to understand their risks of breast cancer and ovarian cancer. The patents do not cover human genes from anyone's body.
April 23, 2012 | By Michelle Maltais
It seems patents have been playing an increasingly crucial role in the business ecosystem. Microsoft just flipped to Facebook for $550 million a portion of its recent $1-billion bundle buy of patents from AOL. The companies said Facebook is buying about 650 of the 925 patents and patent applications.  "It is interesting to see that Microsoft paid $1.14 million per patent property while Facebook paid $850,000 for part of the...
March 31, 2014 | By David G. Savage
WASHINGTON - The Supreme Court sounded ready Monday to curtail the use of certain business patents in a case involving a patent for a computerized risk analysis of international financial transactions. Use of such business-method patents has soared in recent decades. Once granted, they can give a firm or a person a monopoly for up to 20 years to profit from the patented process. Critics say many of the recent computer-related patents are vague and stifle innovation by giving exclusive rights to commonly used methods or formulas.
March 24, 2014 | By Robert J. Lopez and Ben Welsh
The president of the union representing Los Angeles firefighters on Monday told the mayor that suspending a controversial hiring program is "patently unfair" to candidates on track to be included in future classes. Capt. Frank Lima voiced his concerns in a letter to Mayor Eric Garcetti , who announced last week that he was halting the program amid concerns about mismanagement and nepotism.  A class of trainees is underway at the LAFD drill tower in Panorama City, but a class of about 70 additional recruits that was scheduled for the summer has been scrapped . Those recruits were part of pool of several hundred who have passed a written exam, a physical fitness test and oral examinations.    "You are penalizing qualified individuals who had no role in this broken system," Lima told the mayor.
February 8, 2014 | By Chris O'Brien
Turns out that for Apple Inc., being one of the most innovative companies on the planet does have at least one big drawback. The Cupertino, Calif., company says it is the No. 1 target for so-called patent trolls. In court and regulatory filings, Apple provided a rare look at the amount of litigation it is facing from companies whose main business involves threatening to file patent lawsuits against other companies unless they agree to make royalty payments. Apple has faced nearly 100 such lawsuits in the last three years, according to the documents.
January 30, 2014 | By Salvador Rodriguez
Apple has applied for a patent that describes a method the Cupertino company could use to improve the accuracy of the touchscreen on its iPad and iPhone devices. The patent, which was published Thursday, is called " Gesture and Touch Input Detection Through Force Sensing . " The system described in the patent would incorporate the use of forces sensors that could be located within the frame of the iPad, commonly referred to as the bezel. The bezel's force sensors would be capable of detecting how much pressures users put on the touchscreen of their device with their fingers.
January 9, 2014 | By Chris O'Brien
Can Apple and Samsung at long last put aside years of animosity and patent litigation and hold hands and make nice? Don't hold your breath, but the companies have at least agreed to try. Again.  The smartphone and tablet rivals will work with a mediator in an effort to settle their patent disputes in advance of a second trial on the issues scheduled for this spring, according to Bloomberg News . PHOTOS: 10 Tech gadgets we want...
December 12, 2013 | By Chris O'Brien
Apple extended its patent litigation winning streak this week when a South Korean court ruled that the iPhone maker didn't infringe patents held by Samsung.  The ruling follows a recent decision by a jury in San Jose to award additional damages to Apple in a long-running patent dispute with Samsung. And last summer, the Obama administration blocked a potential import ban on some Apple products, over the objections of Samsung.  In the latest case, Samsung had filed a patent case in its home country, seeking to block sales of some Apple products in South Korea.
April 9, 2012 | By Michelle Maltais
AOL's surprising sale of 800 patents to Microsoft for about $1.06 billion gives the company a cash infusion that Wall Street seems to like. Although neither company is saying what the patents cover, what Microsoft actually bought was leverage. "Patents are nothing but a license to sue," to exclude others, said Alexander Poltorak, chairman and chief executive of General Patent Corp. A license to sue, but an opportunity to strike a deal. "Only [between] 3 and 4% of patent lawsuits end up in trial," with most ending up in an arrangement beneficial to both companies, he said.
March 30, 2010 | By Nathan Olivarez-Giles
Callaway Golf Co. failed to get the lift it had hoped for when a federal jury decided Monday that its patents for golf balls weren't valid. The decision by the jury in Wilmington, Del., rejected the Carlsbad, Calif., company's $246-million claim that rival ball maker Titleist infringed its patents. The jury sided with Titleist's arguments that even though its Pro V1 golf balls infringed the patents, the patents themselves weren't enforceable because the design and construction did not represent a new concept or innovation when the patents were issued in 2001 and 2003.
December 10, 2013 | By Salvador Rodriguez
A patent granted to Apple on Tuesday might be the latest sign that the tech giant is making a curved-screen iPhone, following in the footsteps of South Korean rivals Samsung and LG. The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office awarded Apple the patent , which details a method for manufacturing curved touchscreens. Apple and other tech giants have countless patents that they never actually turn into products, but the latest one comes shortly after the release of the Samsung Galaxy Round and the LG G Flex, the first two consumer smartphones to feature curved displays.
December 6, 2013 | By Chris O'Brien
Apple's victories over Samsung in a San Jose federal court have brought the company close to $1 billion in jury verdicts. But those wins have come at a price.  Specifically, they have cost about $60 million, the amount the company has paid its outside lawyers, according to legal filings the company made this week. In the filing, the company is asking the judge to make Samsung pay $15.7 million of those legal fees. That would be in addition to the $930 million in damages Samsung already has to pay Apple.  "Awarding fees to Apple 'flows quite naturally' from the jury's willfulness verdict as well as Samsung's extensive record of willful, deliberate, and calculated decisions to copy the iPhone, in blatant disregard for Apple's IP," Apple's attorneys said in its filing, according to Reuters . The fees primarily have gone to Apple's main law firm, Morrison Foerster.
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