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Caught in a Legal .NET

Big companies like Microsoft and Intel can attract lawsuits like a mosquito trap on a hot summer evening. After all, when you have the technology footprint of Sasquatch, you're bound to stomp on the occasional patent or two.

At least, that's what Vertical Computer Systems contends. In a suit filed a week ago today, Vertical complains that Microsoft infringed on a patent for a "system and method for generating Web sites in an arbitrary object framework." (You can also find a minimally informative press release regarding the lawsuit here.)

The system and method in question is Vertical's SiteFlash, an XML-based technology that (and I quote) "separates the key elements of complex Web sites -- form, content and functionality -- into individual components." It's classic componentization, separating out domains so that changes can be made to individual components independently.

There's no word on how much merit this action might have, or if Microsoft will need to actively defend itself. But if the years-long battles with the U.S. Department of Justice and European Union have proven anything, it's that Microsoft is not afraid of a court challenge.

Are you surprised that Microsoft's .NET Framework is drawing legal scrutiny? Write me at [email protected].

Posted by Michael Desmond on 04/25/2007

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