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From a very recent Johnson Outdoor Products (Humminbird) release:

On Tuesday, May 4, 2010, the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office granted U.S. Patent 7,710,825 ('825), the second patent issued to Johnson Outdoors Inc. for its Humminbird(R) Side Imaging(R) sonar technology. The first patent, U.S. Patent No. 7,652,952 ('952), was granted on January 26, 2010. The '825 patent expands the scope of the Humminbird(R) Side Imaging(R) sonar technology protected from unauthorized copying. ….
………..On January 27, 2010, Johnson Outdoors filed suit in federal court against Navico, Inc., maker of Lowrance LSS-1 StructureScan Imaging System, for infringement of the '952 patent. The Company's complaint said Navico, Inc. had infringed on its '952 patent and actively induced infringement by retailers with full knowledge that the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office had approved the Company's patent. The Company's complaint has been amended consistent with the new protections afforded by this latest patent……..
…………"It is our firm belief that Navico's continued sale of Lowrance LSS-1 infringes both the '952 and '825 patents. We will continue to follow the current legal process to its conclusion to ensure our intellectual property rights are protected…………………..

Wonder what comes next?
...W
 

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Our Patent system is broken and has been for some time. For instance Apple is suing HTC for patent infringement on the iPhone. One of the claims is violating Apple's multitouch touch screen patent where where if you take two fingers and spread them apart it zooms in and back together it zooms out.

Trouble is I know damn well Apple didn't invent that because I used to work for the company (Uticor) that did and saw it demonstrated clear back in 1997. (In fact there isn't one damned thing the iPhone does that I hadn't seen done 10 years earlier) At best Apple purchased the patent after the Corporate Raiders gutted the company in 1998 just to get those and other patent rights and Intellectual Knowledge. I still remember the day they gathered us all in the lunchroom and told us we had 5 minutes to clean out our lockers and get out of the building or they'd charge us with trespassing and fired all 150+ of us on the spot. Cripes they had to bring a couple of dozen rented Thugs with them so they didn't get their asses beat. I never experienced anything like it it was truly senseless and surreal.
 
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