Archive for April, 2008

iPhone in Canada!

Tuesday, April 29th, 2008

It’s finally here, the Apple iPhone will be in Canada later this year! Here is the Rogers’s press release confirming the agreement:

The only tantalizing statement is:

We’re thrilled to announce that we have a deal with Apple to bring the iPhone to Canada later this year. We can’t tell you any more about it right now, but stay tuned.

Collar Bone Updates

Monday, April 28th, 2008

No more clavicle splintI’ve ditched my clavicle splint, affectionally known as “my bra”. I still have some healing to do, and I’m not allowed to climb etc. for a few more months, but at least I don’t have to wear that thing in the heat and I can once again sleep on my sides.

Matthew Small and Clare Respond to Bb patent developments

Friday, April 4th, 2008

Campus Technology posted an interview they did with Matthew Small today. It’s very interesting in that it gives insight into his mindset with respect to the patent and he refers frequently to any perceived problem with the patent to be with software patent law itself, not Bb’s patent. It’s a good point, software and business practise patents are a bad idea to begin with!

I’ve met Mr. Small a few times, and blogged about at least two of them (Bb v. SFLC, Sakai, Moglen, rational thinkers, et all., Follow up with the Bb team). The problem I have with him is he’s a bright, reasoned individual who is operating quite logically upon assumptions that I (any many others) simply can’t accept.

The Bb assumption seems to be: one can get away with anything one wants to with a software patent, the only test is tricking the USPTO; we’re surprised you all didn’t know that and we don’t know why you’re trying to stop us. Small argues that the “Obvious to someone trained in the art” test has to be applied to 1998 when they claimed to apply the concept of one user multiple roles to eLearning. He then points to the fact that no other commercial product on the market allowed for it when they got their product to market, thus it must not have been obvious and that they invented it.

Small also concedes that the concept of one user multiple roles was being used in other non-eLearning tools but not in eLearning tools, thus they applied it first and thus invented it.

BlackBoard patents invalidated!

Friday, April 4th, 2008

How’d I miss this? Maybe it’s just as well that I didn’t post this around April 1st.

Credit to Giulia for spotting it.

There were 10 total issues raised in the reexamination request covering all 44 of the claims in the Blackboard patent. The process isn’t over, and the patent is technically still valid, but it is very unlikely that it’ll cover much at all when it’s all over. As I’ve always said, Blackboard might have invented some things, but not everything to do with on-line learning.

My favourite quote (as it often does) come from Eben Moglen “… the education community should be pleased to hear that Blackboard has now been deprived of the opportunity to commit more ‘thuggery’”.