Microsoft Faces Another Patent Lawsuit

By know everyone is familiar with the popular "autoplay" feature in Windows. Whenever you insert a type of storage media Windows prompts you with a list of applications to run what's ever on it. Back in May 2002 a very small company known as TV Interactive Data claimed Microsoft infringed on its four US patents. Now a meeting has been setup to hopefully find a solution that will satisfy both groups. The crew over at PCWorld has an article explaining in further detail this story.

Microsoft faces a trial in a patent infringement suit over the "autoplay" feature in Windows that automatically starts an application after storage media is loaded into a PC. Little-known TV Interactive Data (TVI) of Los Gatos, California, sued Microsoft in May 2002, seeking damages and an injunction barring Microsoft from further infringement. Microsoft flagged the case in its quarterly regulatory filing with the U.S. Securities Exchange Commission on Friday.

TVI charges Microsoft infringes on four of its U.S. patents, three entitled "host device equipped with means for starting a process in response to detecting insertion of a storage media" and one entitled "method for starting up a process automatically on insertion of a storage media into a host device." The patent numbers are 5,597,307; 5,795,156; 6,249,863; and 6,418,532. Additionally, TVI charges that Microsoft patent 6,366,966, entitled "method and system for automatically running a program" interferes with the TVI patents as it covers a TVI invention, according to case records filed with the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California. Microsoft denies infringement and claims TVI's patents are invalid, according to court records. This is a common response in patent infringement cases.

News source: PCWorld

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