In that section, it mostly compares itself to Microsoft Windows' stacking (not tiling) window manager. There's no comparison to ANY of the already existing tiling window managers.
It was filed on June 2nd, 2008.
There were a ton of tiling oriented windows managers in place for many, many, years prior. Many of them supported automatic layout, and many supported a variety of grid layouts as depicted in the patent.
Here's a video from 1987, 21 years prior to the filing of this patent, showing the Siemens RTL tiling window manager: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MFd0FDv3fQc You can see the selected layout in the upper left hand corner of the screen. The video itself shows the user choosing where new windows will land, and the automated tiling/fit.
As mentioned earlier, a ton of other tiling window managers existed well before the filing of this patent. Many of them with automatic tiling, and several grid layout options. I don't see anything in the patent that sounds novel to me.
Indeed the patent describes a user interface to accomplish this that looks very similar to screenshots of Moom.
My experience with the USPTO is that statements like "I don't see anything in the patent that sounds novel to me" doesn't amuse them and they take this sort of thing seriously. Whether you agree with software patents or not, I think it's important to not be too dismissive of that fact.
It does though. The screenshots show grid options, and describe how the end user can place windows in the grid. It specifically complains about how MS Windows has overlapping windows. Grid + no overlap == tiling.
>Indeed the patent describes a user interface to accomplish this that looks very similar to screenshots of Moom.
Sure. The argument about "novel" is that the patent holder wasn't the first to do something "similar to Moom". The idea that 2008 was the first time someone had the notion of grid layouts and allowing an end user to place a window in them is just silly.
That's not what's being patented. The gui menu to select placement of windows is what's being patented.
Did that exist before 2008?
I know I used window managers with almost the same grid square select in the 1990's. Not able to conjure up a screenshot yet. I did find one that's very close, here: http://www.badros.com/greg/papers/scwm-extensible-wm.pdf
That is clearly a UI for dynamic window placement and sizing, just not with the exact grid dynamic, though you can define new constraints, so it's possible it can do it as well. It's not the one I remember, but it's hard to Google up old UI's in HN time.
Given some time, I'm sure I could find something exactly like it.
Edit: "Once the patent has issued, you can challenge it at the USPTO by filing a request for reexamination of the patent"
Edit2: It's also possible there are overlapping, earlier patents. This one looks promising...compare the drawings: https://www.google.com/patents/US5712995
And the patent pretty much describes the mouse based interface which Moom implements, and I can't think of any prior art of that.
You should be able to find prior art and invalidate many clauses of the patent, like the general idea of grid based layouts, especially driven by keyboard shortcuts and mouse gestures, but the general concept of a graphical drop-down menu for arranging windows will probably stay.
Edit: first alpha version May 30 2006 (http://www.donationcoder.com/forum/index.php?topic=3824.msg2...).
I read/skimmed the patent, I cannot find anything described which is obviously novel. Care to provide a quote of these particular features?
In evaluating claims 1 and 2 (¶9) I imagine that a judge will get to this screenshot and compare it to this diagram and ask the authors of Moom for their justification. This justification can indeed be that it isn't novel, but I do not think the judge is likely to accept it because the patent examiner did indeed grant the patent.
In evaluating claim 3 (¶17) it may be that Moom is not infringing, but it is difficult to tell from screenshots and a video.
I am not a patent lawyer but I don't think that how it works. The patent examiner is not qualified to do and does not do an exhaustive check for novelness. They mainly do a procedural check.
"Exhaustive" has a specific legal definition.
The examiner indeed identifies existing work and asks for an explanation.
They usually focus on existing grants, but they also look at other applications (that are published). They do not have to pay as much attention to un-filed prior art because the US uses a "first-to-file" system.
First to file doesn't invalidate un-filed prior art or give it lower presedence.
First to file only really matters when there are overlapping patent applications. Basically a situation where one person files first but the other applicant claims they actually invented first but didn't publish the invention.
Had the person who claims they invented first published their invention, they'd have a year to file.
If that year was up, their prior art could still prevent the other applicant from being granted a patent the same as it would be under first to invent.
I'm not saying it invalidates anything.
I'm saying this kind of arm-chair lawyering isn't going to impress a judge.
> First to file only really matters when there are overlapping patent applications.
35 USC 102 (b).
What do you think it says?
>I'm not saying it invalidates anything.
You said this:
>They do not have to pay as much attention to un-filed prior art because the US uses a "first-to-file" system.
That implies that un-filed prior art was made less important by first to file, which is incorrect.
>I'm saying this kind of arm-chair lawyering isn't going to impress a judge.
Good thing I'm not trying to impress a judge. I'm just trying to stop the spread of misinformation on first to file.
Also, the FITF system only became effective for patents filed on or after March 16, 2013, whereas this patent was filed back in 2008.