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Author Topic: Other: EFF's Patent Busters Take Aim at Nintendo's Handheld Emulation Patent  (Read 14643 times)

RHDNBot

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Update By: Karatorian

As part of it's ongoing Patent Busting program targeting bogus patents, the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF), a leading organization “defending free speech, privacy, innovation, and consumer rights”, has included a patent held by Nintendo that covers the emulation of handheld gaming devices in it's Top Ten Most Wanted list.

The patent is clearly aimed at restricting the development of emulators and related tools for handheld consoles, of which Nintendo's Gameboy brand has the majority market share. This patent could have dire implications for the ROM hacking community as such software is of vital importance to the hacking of titles on these systems.

The EFF is seeking community contributions of prior art from before the May 27, 1999 filing date of the patent. Anyone with information regarding handheld emulation prior to this date can submit it to the EFF using a form at their website.

The EFF has been successful in overturning other bogus patents and is in the process of legal proceedings aimed at overturning more.

Relevant Link: (http://w2.eff.org/patent/wanted/patent.php?p=nintendo)
« Last Edit: February 26, 2008, 06:00:32 pm by Nightcrawler »

Spinner 8

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Does staff have the ability to proofread posts?

Just wondering.

Tauwasser

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Yes they do. My recent news entry got edited and I was informed about that via pm. So they ought to be able to edit it.

cYa,

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FinalMinuet

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When you really think about it, it's scary what kind of power big companies can try to throw around. I hate such debates over copyright, patenting, "intellectual property" and whatnot. Though, I can't really say I blame Nintendo for such a move.
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Guadozoku

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I've never heard of this patent being USED for anything, though I suppose this is a more "just in case" thing. Has EFF gone after the Zen Patent yet (that's the world's biggest bogus patent.)

DarknessSavior

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And uh...isn't this more of a news article rather than a utility? >.>

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akadewboy

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This reminds me of the whole Sony vs Bleem and Sony vs Virtual Game Station thing years ago. I don't think Sony even had a patent like this, but they still succeeded in taking down the companies that made those emulators. I think it just goes to show that if you try to make money off of emulators you can expect trouble.

Keep 'em freeware  ;D
« Last Edit: February 25, 2008, 11:10:46 pm by akadewboy »
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UglyJoe

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This reminds me of the whole Sony vs Bleem and Sony vs Virtual Game Station thing years ago. I don't think Sony even had a patent like this, but they still succeeded in taking down the companies that made those emulators.

Didn't Sony just end up buying Connectix and shutting down the VGS project?

akadewboy

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Yeah they bought them out eventually because Connectix couldn't afford the legal battle.
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HyperHacker

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...of which Nintendo's Game Boy brand...
But yeah, the patent is bogus, like so many others. There really needs to be much stricter rules when it comes to getting patents. >_>
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Lashiec

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Yeah they bought them out eventually because Connectix couldn't afford the legal battle.

Actually Sony bought all rights to VGS, not the company. Despite Connectix winning the lawsuit, they were not allowed to sell the emulator anymore, so it was a good move (considering what happened with Bleem LLC).
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FranMichaels

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Does staff have the ability to proofread posts?

Just wondering.

Ditto. It's the Electronic Frontier Foundation (although they love Freedom I think)

Anyway, thank you for the post. Love the EFF. Hate patent trolls and bogus patents.
It's all in the mind, ya know.

Bad Username

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I just submitted information about MEKA, the multisystem Sega emulator that supported Game Gear games more than a month before the patent filing date. Go EFF!

UglyJoe

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I just submitted information about MEKA, the multisystem Sega emulator that supported Game Gear games more than a month before the patent filing date. Go EFF!

Does the Game Gear really count?  It's not so much a handheld system as it is a tiny Master System.

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Checking out the "Other References" section on the patent, I’m kind of amused. Who is this... "Fayzeillin"... person? :laugh:
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Bad Username

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It may be a tiny Master System, but it's still a handheld, so it counts. I also submitted GameBoy 98, which was released in, you guessed it, 1998.

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I remember playing ZSNES / SNES9x back in what, 1996? Or 97...
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Karatorian

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Damn, now I look like an ass. I guess I really should have filed this under Other, rather than Utilities. And yes, it is the Electronic Freedom Foundation. And the stupid thing is, I proofread it over and over, but I didn't see it. Somehow, it never pays to proofread your own work. Unless you get someone else to do it, you just don't see some stuff. Oh well, hindsight's 20-20 and all that.
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Neil

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It may be a tiny Master System, but it's still a handheld, so it counts. I also submitted GameBoy 98, which was released in, you guessed it, 1998.

I guess you didn't read the details. Part of the patent states that the emulator is capable of running "on a low-capability target platform (e.g., a seat-back display for airline or train use, a personal digital assistant, a cell phone)".

I was thinking about the version of MESS that was ported to digital cameras in the late 90s. I don't know exactly when that was done though, so it might be too late...

SonofMog

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And yes, it is the Electronic Freedom Foundation.

I think you did it again....
shaqfu: Like I said, the mere concept of a bat'leth-wielding Moogle did me in.