incrediBILL - 6:38 pm on Apr 23, 2011 (gmt 0)
After reading that patent it sounds exactly like code I implemented in the 80s and 90s based on a book from an IBM fellow James Martin in "Computer DataBase Organization"
That patent has so much predating work it's pathetic.
What he calls "garbage collection" we changed the name to coalescing and my algo's never required the dabatbase to go offline to coalesce empty space either, it happened in real time as you were using the system.
I could elaborate more but why bother, patent trolls irritate me to hell and I've spent enough time helping kill a couple of them that came after my industry, Google can pound sand.
However, people should note this is a prime example of a patent holder suing the USER of the patent, not the manufacturer, because in this case Linux is free, there are no deep pockets unless you go after the users.
People never believe this can happen to them and it's a typical patent troll bank rolling strategy, hit some low hanging fruit first, they'll just pay a crazy license fee to make you go away instead of fight you in court. Then you take the bankroll of license fees and make your move on the real money when you can afford the lawyers.