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This time its not funky graphic images full of letters and numbers instead its HUGE text ascii lettering you have to read :)
Chances is this was added not because its 'pretty' but to keep the automated bots from bogging down the submission page.
also probably is in violation of a variety of published patents.
BTW, writing a script to output a security code in that format is extremely easy to do.
I don't see a patent issue at all with using a password key to submit; that's just something automatically generated. Network Solutions uses entering a code now before you can access whois data, for each domain name looked up, and they're not the only ones who have started imposing restrictions that way to access areas.
As I understand patents they have to be taken on a specific process. So would just using the concept of restricting access to an area using passwords even be covered under patent law? Sheesh, wholesale sites out there require an entry code after getting a resale number, membership areas require entering info to gain access - and web hosts have been auto-generating user passwords for ages for new accounts.
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Sounds to me like nit-picking and looking for a problem that isn't even there to even suggest a patent issue on concepts that can't be patented. I think the consensus is that it's a non-issue altogether on commonly used concepts that are older than dirt.
For a real search, I would recommend a review of patents related to companies like intertrust, digimarc, and even verisign as you suggested. Additionally, words like 'watermark' and/or 'steganography' come to mind and there is (was perhaps) a lot of IP issued around the time that cryptography was really taking off in th eearly 90's for commerce purposes.
I just spent a few minutes and when you look at very recently issued ones, and this is virtually inverted: patent 6343138, while 6408331 could be broadly interpreted to be inclusive of the scope of these types of login mechanisms.
Regardless of any of the aforementioned, it is still up the a patent owner to enforce their patents, so none of it matters and it's generally in the public's best interst not to look and see if they're infringing because this can result in triple damages (willful infringement). And of course in any case, I'm no lawyer.
It's clear that concepts can't be patented, and as far as generating ascii art on the fly, there are no doubt thousands of script kiddies out there that could hack out a simple routine to do that in no time flat.
...concepts that are older than dirt...
I remember my father bringing home listings with that pretty ascii art letters when I was not even on elementary school.
looks like the unix "banner" output.
As our fellow up here promptly admits...
And of course in any case, I'm no lawyer.
That of course doesn't stops him to come here, to a thread turned offtopic, to spread FUD.
...and as far as generating ascii art on the fly...
That's the finality of the old trusty aalib. A really useful library, let me say. Its coolest application is to view video on a 80x24 tty.
Back in 1979 at the computer lab in school with my little 3 year old daughter on my lap. ;) Output pretty stuff on the front of the printouts from dot matrix printer that was hooked up to the whopping 64k Xerox 530 powerhouse we worked with before we got to the IBM 370.
Thanks Duckula, brings back sweet memories of Hollerith cards and throwing dot matrix printers into endless loops with RPG2. :)
Moving back on topic, I just tried to submit and got a message that there have already been 100 submissions from my IP today, and I haven't been near there. It's from my ISP and dynamic, so they're exluding a lot of people who use the same ISP. 'Twasn't me, I haven't been near Gigablast in ages. They'll need to address that.
Today, i use a verification code too. Auto submissions are far less know but some butt heads allready started to work around the verfication procedure again ...