Patent may threaten Google Maps and others

According to Very Spatial and other sources, a patent issued February 14th to Neil Balthaser, a former Macromedia Executive, may cause problems for Google Maps and other sites that use dynamic movement. Apparently, the patent covers rich media such as Ajax, Flash, and Java, and could impact any web site that use dynamic movement, including video and animation.In particular the patent could spell problems for all of the major web mapping sites although it is unclear if the patent will stand up to legal challenge. Importantly, Very Spatial mentions that one of the options for the patent holder may be to simply sell the rights to the highest bidder rather than try and enforce it. Note to all College Freshman, if you are looking for a career choice choose Patent Law as it appears that these guys are the ones who are making lots of money this year with this and the Blackberry patent fight raging on.

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