Intellectual property licensing firm Eolas has announced in a letter to its share holders that it has settled a patent lawsuit with Microsoft over a method to embed interactive components into a web page, such as the way that Youtube videos can be embedded onto a blog. The suit was filed in 1999 and Microsoft has since changed the way that its Internet Explorer browser embeds Active-X elements, as users are now required to activate interactive items by clicking on them where previously such items would function automatically.
Although Eolas initially won $521 million from MS, the software maker argued that the patent should be invalidated due to prior art, a legal term indicating that somebody else invented the technology before the Eolas researchers did. Last June the US Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) agreed to reopen an investigation into the patent which could have potentially lead to the its invalidation. However, as of August 24th, all claims between the two companies have allegedly been settled, though details of the settlement have not yet been released. According to Todd Bishop, Microsoft spokesman Jack Evans has confirmed via phone that a settlement has been reached in the case.