Gene Heskett wrote:
They mention something:On Thursday 15 December 2005 20:40, Gabriel wrote:Gene Heskett wrote:On Thursday 15 December 2005 19:29, Gabriel wrote:Carl Fink wrote:On Wed, Dec 14, 2005 at 02:34:31PM -0800, Steve Lamb wrote:IIRC one of the algorithms that can be used in zip is lzw which is (or was) patented.The patent expired in 2003. http://www.sslug.dk/patent/lzwunisys.htmlThe license was owned by Unisys and IBM. The one expired in 2003 was the Unisys license. The IBM license expires on 08/11/2006 (in the USA). It's the same algorithm used on GIF.'scuse me? If the unisys patent expired in 2003, then either the USTPO screwed up again (what else is new?) in issueing the same patent to IBM, or their 'license' is not in fact anything to do with a patent, and should be absolutely moot now that the Unisys patent has expired, all over the planet I believe. Any legal manuevering(sp) should be entirely between IBM & Unisys. And likely a waste of time & shyster fees. If not, and IBM does have a legal claim on the lzw algorythm, please cite some links so that we can become better educated.OK, I said that 'cause I remind something I red about a year ago. It was in the GNU Project Page, where they explain why there's no GIFs on their pages. I just checked and it was last updated on 2005/10/31 17:33:26. Check it out: http://www.gnu.org/philosophy/gif.htmlI see, and many thanks for the link. The one thing it doesn't explain however, is why the USTPO allowed 2 different entities to patent the lzw algorythm. That is still a puzzlement to me, but what do I know.
Even if Unisys really did give permission for free software to generate GIFs, we would still have to deal with the IBM patent. Both the IBM and the Unisys patents cover the same "invention"--the LZW compression algorithm. (This could reflect an error on the part of the US Patent and Trademark Office, which is famous for incompetence and poor judgment.)
about the middle of the page. :-P
-- Cheers -- Gabriel Parrondo Linux User #404138 "In theory there's no difference between the theory and the practice. In the practice There is."