Microsoft Patents 'IsNot'

Jan Dries jan.dries at
Sat Nov 20 01:21:22 CET 2004

Jeff Shannon wrote:
> Peter Maas wrote:
>> Isnot is semantically equivalent to the inequality operator which is
>> some hundred years old. I doubt that this can be an approved patent,
>> even under the liberal patent US laws.
> Maybe it's not a technically *valid* patent, but that doesn't mean it 
> can't be approved.  The US  patent system has become appallingly lazy 
> about checking for things like prior art and obviousness.  (After all, 
> we're talking about the system that approved a patent on "one-click 
> purchasing"....)

IIRC, a few years ago there was an Australian lawyer who wanted to show 
the ineffectiveness of the patent application procedure in Australia, 
and so he filed a patent application for the invention of some sort of 
rotating device (the type that is more commonly known as "a wheel").
The application was approved.


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