Apple patents dock

Stardock responds: Bring it on

Wednesday, October 8, 2008 by Frogboy | Discussion: WinCustomize News

Apple has been granted a patent for the MacOS dock.

Read the whole thing here.

Besides the general idea of a userbar with "a plurality of item representations" that consolidates features like "launching and managing running applications," the patent focuses particularly on the Dock's magnification feature that makes icons bigger as you sweep by them with a cursor.

Some may recall this article that points out that not only have docks been seen in operating systems for decades but that Stardock has been doing docks since 1994.

image

Look familiar?  Apple has every right to protect their inventions. But their innovation with regards to the Mac dock is extremely narrow.  Stardock doesn't patent its software as a rule for philosophical reasons. But the lack of a patent doesn't mean Stardock hasn't been heavily involved in creating prior art.

 

First Previous Page 1 of 2 Next Last
Philly0381
Reply #1 Wednesday, October 8, 2008 1:41 PM

Just what does this mean for Stardock?

Do you expect Apple to show up at the door with a court order?

EDIT:  I guess I needed to read the link first, sorry.

HG_Eliminator
Reply #2 Wednesday, October 8, 2008 1:53 PM

Since SD has been doing docks since before the patent was applied for, Wouldnt OD fall under prior programs and fall out side the patents restrictions? Will Apple be stupid enough to try and force OD off the market?

Jobs did not invent the "dock" but yet they list him as one of the inventors?

Didnt OD zoom the Icons back in 94? I thought they did...

 

To expand on an idea already out there is one thing.. but to take said idea and patent it, basically stealing the idea and claiming it as your own, then have the patent office legitamize it is preposterous. But yet MS is constantly being blasted for thier "Shady practices"???? and being drug in to court?

ImStein
Reply #3 Wednesday, October 8, 2008 2:23 PM
That just blows me away. I have a feeling this is going to get ugly. I refuse to give up my docks....its what helps keep my desktop clean!
VexAurora
Reply #4 Wednesday, October 8, 2008 2:24 PM

I am getting fed up by the mockery of the US patent system and it's international implications (UK here), also of apple and there "evil empire" tactics (much like a 90's MS) and sick of seeing them get away with it since they're not seen as a monopoly.

https://forums.wincustomize.com/318845

Philly0381
Reply #5 Wednesday, October 8, 2008 4:08 PM

Well, nothing like looking past the obivous, different platforms, different languages, right?

Object Dock being for the PC shouldn't be affect by this, right?

Apple surely didn't get a patent for docks or even the zooming effect on all computer platforms, did they?

EDIT:  I've read some more stuff about this and it does look like Apple's patent applies to other computer platforms.

Doronila1
Reply #6 Wednesday, October 8, 2008 4:53 PM
oh boy do i dislike apple more and more for each passing day. They remind me of what microsoft was like in the nineties.i bet you stardock will get a letter though their door asking for some monies for every od plus thats being sold. i was fuming when i saw this on gizmodo
DaveRI
Reply #7 Wednesday, October 8, 2008 5:00 PM
I am getting fed up by the mockery of the US patent system and it's international implications (UK here),
Me too (US here). "Mockery" seems to be such a appropriate word.
Pixeleo
Reply #8 Wednesday, October 8, 2008 5:22 PM

Everybody grab OD+ and run, or that guy in the turtleneck will come and get you 

Meh. Apple sucks. Big time  

SKoriginals
Reply #9 Wednesday, October 8, 2008 6:02 PM
Don't these people at the patent office do any sort of research? iIdiots strike again.
Jafo
Reply #10 Wednesday, October 8, 2008 6:15 PM

To permit a greater number of items to reside in the userbar, a magnification function can be provided which magnifies items within the userbar when they are proximate the cursor associated with the graphical user interface.

Ah, yes, there we go. The patent is for rollover magnification of the items in the dock.

 

Quite narrow, really....

Ausvet
Reply #11 Wednesday, October 8, 2008 6:27 PM

This is crazy, almost as crazy as McDonalds Inc tried to close down family run take-away in Scotland called McDonalds Burgers a few years ago.

Judge told McDonalds where to go though on the grounds of the family name was McDonald and they were more entitled to use of the name than a Kroc even if a surname could be patented and besides Scottish history much older and full of more precedent than US Corparate law and even US history.

Scottish law is rather more intelligent than most as 3 possible verdicts - innocent, not proven or guilty so if found not proven there is possibility of revisit the trial based on new evidence.

Apple are crazy and greedy in the beginning agents to sell their products then they introduced Apple stores in direct competition to people who paid for permits to sell Apple products, talk about getting screwed by your boss.

pjdark
Reply #12 Wednesday, October 8, 2008 6:48 PM
Apple won't get my dock! Or my rollovers!
SirBedwyr
Reply #13 Wednesday, October 8, 2008 7:12 PM
Jobs did not invent the "dock" but yet they list him as one of the inventors?
He is an incredibly narcissistic person. His micromanagement and personality are legendary.
BigDogBigFeet
Reply #14 Wednesday, October 8, 2008 7:31 PM
I think this shows the legal value of using the system. Stardock should learn to file for patents on the technology it develops. You can't be awarded a patent if you do not file for one.
Excalpius
Reply #15 Wednesday, October 8, 2008 7:50 PM

The Amiga had docks as well, so I believe prior art will invalidate this in a court of law if it comes up.

SirSmiley
Reply #16 Wednesday, October 8, 2008 9:27 PM
You have to give it their legal team. Not that this is a shining example of the patent office. The patent system needs an overhaul and too get with the times...at least maybe they could catch up to last century? Enforcing a patent is significantly harder than getting it. Great for lawyers bad for everyone else. Part of me just sees this as another feather they will throw into their marketing cap. We invented, we invented that, we created clean air, blah blah blah.
BigDogBigFeet
Reply #17 Thursday, October 9, 2008 2:46 AM

I'm not sure I buy into the idea that the concept of a dock can be patented.  I'm not immediately familiar with the requirements for patent but, I think something has to demonstrate a unique, new and original function to be patentable.  You can design and build a new and better mouse trap and possibly get a patent for it, but only for the unique, new and original aspect of it.  The concept of a mouse trap itself isn't patentable.

Even as to the enlargement aspect on mouseover portion of the Apple OSX Dock that may not be unique, new and original.  It should be interesting to see this play out.

Nimbin
Reply #18 Thursday, October 9, 2008 5:56 AM
another case of apple claiming something as it's own with no regard for others, no wonder i despise the company, just let them try and take away my docks
messiah1
Reply #19 Thursday, October 9, 2008 7:37 AM
They didn't patent the dock. The feature they patented is the magnification feature.
To permit a greater number of items to reside in the userbar, a magnification function can be provided which magnifies items within the userbar when they are proximate the cursor associated with the graphical user interface.
warreni
Reply #20 Thursday, October 9, 2008 9:48 AM
Pixeleo said:
Everybody grab OD+ and run, or that guy in the turtleneck will come and get you
I'm not scared of Jobs. I clicked on your link and he looks pale and skinny. I think I could take him. Ausvet said:
This is crazy, almost as crazy as McDonalds Inc tried to close down family run take-away in Scotland called McDonalds Burgers a few years ago.

Judge told McDonalds where to go though on the grounds of the family name was McDonald and they were more entitled to use of the name than a Kroc even if a surname could be patented and besides Scottish history much older and full of more precedent than US Corparate law and even US history.
That's a pretty funny story. Jafo said:
To permit a greater number of items to reside in the userbar, a magnification function can be provided which magnifies items within the userbar when they are proximate the cursor associated with the graphical user interface.

Ah, yes, there we go. The patent is for rollover magnification of the items in the dock.



Quite narrow, really....
Yes, but hasn't OD been doing that for a while too? Is OD 2.0 not going to include this feature?

Please login to comment and/or vote for this skin.

Welcome Guest! Please take the time to register with us.
There are many great features available to you once you register, including:

  • Richer content, access to many features that are disabled for guests like commenting on the forums and downloading skins.
  • Access to a great community, with a massive database of many, many areas of interest.
  • Access to contests & subscription offers like exclusive emails.
  • It's simple, and FREE!



web-wc01