Have you heard of Surf Cast? I certainly hadn’t until today, but it seems this small company will soon be a name we’re all familiar with because they are suing Microsoft for the Live Tiles that are used on both Windows 8 and Windows RT and Windows Phone.
This Portland-based OS development company has all the markings of a Patent trolling company and they are going after Microsoft for infringing on its patents with the use of Live Tiles in its desktop, tablet and mobile software.
Patent 6,724,403 (’403): “System and method for simultaneous display of multiple information sources.”
The above patent involves the method of “presenting information from variety of sources on a display device.”, ”organizes content from a variety of information sources into grid of tiles each of which can refresh its content independently of the others.”,. They are basiacally claiming that the Microsoft’s Live Tiles concept was invented by them.
Surfcast even has a website in which it describes the Tiles concept,
SurfCast designed a new concept referred to as ‘Tiles’.
Tiles can be thought of as dynamically updating icons. A Tile is different from an icon because it can be both selectable and live — containing refreshed content that provides a real-time or near-real-time view of the underlying information.
Tiles can provide dynamic bookmarking — an at-a-glance view of the current status of the program, file, or content associated with it.
Tiles enable people to have all their content, applications, and resources, regardless of whether on their mobile device, tablet, computer, or in their Cloud — visualized persistently — dynamically updating.
We’ll see how this one ends because Microsoft also has a few patents on live tiles. We hope this battle doesn’t drag out too long, the problem with these patent troll companies is they usually come to the party prepared.