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I got this info (issue) from an application called 'IE fix' - by a company called rnsoft - their site explains all if you want to know more.
tkwww (Published prior to October 1992)
Viola (Demonstrated July 1993)
HTTP/1.0 Spec (Published 1992)
emacs-www (1992? 1993?)
Mosaic/ application/x-csh (1992, 1993)
www/ application/postscript (1991)
www-talk (1992 threads on executable content)
can be coordinated into a patent-revoking suit.
I guess we will see.
Who knows though, mabye I could be a millionaire, too? Better yet, why limit it to 'below water'? Why don't I get a patent for 'a mechanism for respiring oxygen'; then I can sue everyone living for having lungs and daring to use my technology without my permission! ;p
Whoa! Sorry for starting this teapot tempest : )
I managed to do a little reading since starting this topic - as Tedster quite rightly pointed out the change only has something to do with the "plugin - awareness" of a browser - the press releases seem to say that it all has something to do with activeX but I think that's misleading - it's the act of using the Eolas patented "way of making a browser understand an desplay a third-party application's content" (my quotes to sum up: what the browser does when the browser sees the HTML <embed> and <object> and <applet> etc tags). Of course the microsoft press release explains none of this.Oh, and I'm sorry that I was totally wrong on one point - animated gif's are safe : P
In addition, Microsoft is only the FIRST company targeted - that wasn't really clear either, but I guess the other big browser fish out there have been warned. Microsoft never planned on coming out with a new version of its browser; it's only because of this case that they will.
I'm not so sure what the implications of this case outcome will be - W3C doesn't see much future in the <embed> tag - and seems to have the same attitude for other 'special' plug-in signalling HTML tags as well. Perhaps someone better informed than I can fill us in there... or perhaps there's another thread...
My motto in this case is 'wait and see'. I'm not going to rush and change code on my pages or inform clients that they have to hire me to change code on their pages. Too many uncertainties: pending lawsuits, prior art, international aspects, vague MS schedule, user choice. Besides, it's not like the Y2K bug: web sites will not stop 'working'. The situation will probably become more clear in a couple of months.
The legal battle is far from being over. It may be premature to change any pages yet. Eolas considers the work around as still infringing on their patent. They filed a motion to permanently enjoin Microsoft from distributing their browser unless they get a license or remove it completely. Who knows which way the courts will decide.
Wouldn't that be great! Allowing Mozilla and Opera to take over! Unless of course they are targeted too.
What will happen is a new IE comes out as mentioned - one which is already available for testing - but who will upgrade? People are still using IE5! So the majority will just stick with the current version of IE6 and ignore any later versions.
...You know, I don't think it will end here. IMHO all this looks like a Microsoft tactic to get Eolas to back down - by threatening to ruin the internet for everyone. Lame, but Microsoft has never been known for its imagination.
from MS page quoted earlier regarding
inlining data to avoid a warning prompt:
You can provide base64-encoded data to the ActiveX control with the DATA attribute of the OBJECT element to provide data in base64 format.
so ..., you can thank EOLAS for forcing upon users
of the new version autoloading of active content,
because some advertisers are going to notice this,
and insist that their providers do this inline thing.
when, not if, this happens, don't blame MS for being
The code which Macromedia used to embed flash into html pages meant that its own validator on DWMX as well as the W3c's validator, threw up errors. With the solutions regarding this IE upgrade which can be found here: ( [macromedia.com ] ) my pages now validate, and so it seems, they will still work in most-if not all-browsers. The fact that for the last 2 weeks I've been looking for alternatives to the <embed> tag (found some but they were generally unsatisfactory), now I have the answer, and I suppose all the others out there wanting to validate embedded flash will also be HAPPY!
(NB. even though this story is quite old and the method of doing this has been possible for ages!)
I've recently started using MOZILLA FIREBIRD (www.mozilla.org/products/firebird/why/), it blows IE away (tabbed browser windows, form filling, password keeper, google bar, etc). I've even started encouraging my customers and users to drop IE. Hey, IE has never been standards compliant anyway... good riddence, I hope they lose major market share.
The Web Application Platform
Distributed hypermedia method for automatically invoking external application providing interaction and display of embedded objects within a hypermedia document.
U.S. Patent 5,838,906, Filed in October, 1994, Issued November 17, 1998
Inventors: Michael D. Doyle, David C. Martin and Cheong Ang
First demonstrated publicly in 1993, this invention lifted the glass for the first time from the hypermedia browser, enabling Web browsers for the first time to act as platforms for fully-interactive embedded applications. The patent covers Web browsers that support such currently popular technologies as ActiveX components, Java applets, and Navigator plug-ins. Eolas' advanced browser technology makes possible rich interactive online experiences for over 500 million Web users, worldwide.
[infoworld.com ] puts the price tag to MS for using the Eolas technology at 150-200 million dollars per year.
[news.com.com ] with the quote
the verdict is increasingly interpreted as a potentially crushing burden on the Web, threatening to force significant changes to its fundamental language, HTML. Microsoft's competitors fear that Eolas' lawyers will target them next, and its partners--such as Macromedia and Sun Microsystems--worry that an enjoined IE browser would be prohibited from running their software plug-ins without awkward technology alternatives.
The result has been a complex shift of industry dynamics that has turned many traditional alliances and rivalries upside down, prompting long-suffering competitors in the browser market to side with archrival Microsoft
[usatoday.com ] Gives a good time line and explains that Doyle did not sue earlier, because his patent was not approved until 1998, at which point he filed suit, and the thing has finally come to fruition. In the meantime, of course, MS won the browser war.
Incidentally, most articles say Macromedia will be hurt the most. Macromedia price plummeted on Thursday, so it certainly seems to have investors worried. [finance.yahoo.com ]
This suppresses the superfluous 'click OK for no reason' dialogue box OK in Microsoft's preview version browser, at least. Whether MS will be forced to change their plans again before the final release remains to be seen.
Flash is great in certain situations, but those are situations where clicking to allow Flash to run is viable.
Using Flash to throw up adverts, power supposedly 'accessible' sites, and for gigantic interstitals, however, is not so great, and I wave good riddance.