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EP1022875 Push network
Advice on the reading of patent specifications:
  • The decisive element are the claims, as they specify which actions are forbidden within the framework of the patent.
  • Violating one single claim is sufficient to be considered a patent violation. Generally, claim number 1 is the decisive main claim which covers all other claims relating to special cases.
  • The description is intended to help the reader interpret the claim. At the same time, it is supposed to document and disclose the details of the invention. This disclosure is the original purpose of the entire patent system.
  • In practice, a patent specification contains no detailed information on how the patented procedure could be implemented (even if the patent owner allowed the implementation). In particular, a software patent contains no program code (reference implementation), but merely describes the idea of a software.

Patented idea: Transferring pieces of information where they belong.

Main claim: Adding to an information packet a "content identifier" and/or a "category identifier" which is used to decide which destination the packet is delivered to.

Further claims: The 44 claims cover nearly all sorts of aspects of multi-user communication.

  • Waiver of "catogory-identifier"
  • Usage of a table, which specifies who is receiving which information
  • Users sign in the table and sign themselves out in different ways
  • Automatic deletion of unused delivery rules according to various criteria
  • Dynamic routing
  • Avoidance of loops
  • Buffering packages that cannot be delivered immediately
  • Hierarchical structure
  • Recalling information from the server, possibly filtering according to content and/or category
  • Selective release of informationen on the server

Description: According to the patent specification the difference to existing networks is that the receiver determines whether an information packet is delivered in the first place, while in the case of the internet the IP-address of the information packages is specified. In this respect the patent description defines existing networks as unsuitable for "push-services", while the "invention" solves the problem.

Everyday parallel:

  • At an information stand there are presented brochures. An interested person tells the owner of the stand which topics ("category-identifiers") she is interested in. By the act of giving ("delivering") the brochures to the person as requested, the owner of the stand is infringing the main claim.
  • Subscriptions of newspapers, magazines, catalogues, etc.

Examples for patent infringement:

  • Mailing-lists
  • Internet-panels
  • Usenet news
  • The mailbox-systems (including UUCP) which existed before emergence of the internet,
  • The TCP-Portnumber is also a "category-identifier". In this respect every packet filter (firewall) infringes the main claim.

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