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The patent describes an internet search functionality in which users can locate a topic or business based on their location. If you've ever looked for a nearby doctor or plumber online using your ZIP code or city, according to Geomas, the site you used likely infringed upon the patent.
Source: Wired [wired.com]
If this patent is upheld, it will have some far reaching implications.
"We aren't necessarily looking to sue as our main business, but realistically I think that's going to have to happen."
Related to technology moving forward...
The patent appears broad and obvious today, but was filed in 1996, before internet search became so commonplace. Roughly 100 companies, including Verizon, cite '474 as prior art in their own patents.
Unlike many of those other companies, however, Geomas hasn't created a working technology based on the patent, which Perkins said could give defendants an advantage in court.