back to article Imation to fork out $11m in patent suit

A jury has found that flash-flinger Imation must pay $11m damages to ioengine for patent infringement. The US patent in question is number 8,539,047 (the ’047 Patent entitled Apparatus, method and system for a tunnelling client access point). A company called ioengine, which owns the patent, involving secure USB devices, had …

  1. Dwarf Silver badge

    The US patent in question is number 8,539,047 (the ’047 Patent entitled Apparatus, method and system for a tunnelling client access point). A company called ioengine, which owns the patent, involving secure USB devices, had alleged that Imation had wilfully infringed the IP in its IronKey products, which have on-board storage and processing capabilities.

    The Delaware court jury found the infringement took place but was accidental, not wilful, and awarded ioengine the $11m.

    Patent case in Delaware court - check

    Very fuzzy patent definition - check

    Smaller company goes after big company - check

    Previous works that might make anyone with a technical background ask if its genuine innovation - Nope.

    Tunnelling client access point, sounds very much like any point to point service, so SSL, IPSEC, VPN's or even client access point CAPWAP tunnelling technique all seem to fit the bill.

    Does it really matter than its over a USB bus as opposed to an IP bus ? Is any part of that truly innovative, or was it just a good cast of a net that caught something and they gave it a tug ?

  2. Mage Silver badge

    USPTO

    The patent has judged to have been contravened, but really it sounds like yet another woolly non-innovative thing that should only have copyright protection, not patent protection.

    The problem dates back to the 19th Century. An example was the patents the founder of US Eveready bought, one for a drycell battery patented by an English Chemist living in New York that was a copy of Wilhelm Hellesen's battery. The "dry" cell anyway was a natural development of the Lelanche and Volta cells. The other was for a miniature carbon filament bulb. That's why they were called "Flashlights" as the battery quickly polarised with the high drain carbon filament, but would quickly recover when disconnected.

    Edison persuing film makers, even though his patent was a copy of a French system. In 1920 Armstrong's copy of French Superhet, Farnsworth and his too wide TV camera patent, 1930s Armstrong and FM patent. Philips and too broad "Pentode" (which is why the US called them Beam Tetrodes, most later Philps/Mullard output valves called Pentodes are same construction as a Beam Tetrode.

    The Patent system is a nice idea gone nuts.

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