9. Oktober 2009

Prior Art for the Eolas AJAX Patent

Eolas claims, that the U.S. Patent No. 7,599,985 covers AJAX and other mechanisms, which execute in the client and communicate with the server to update parts of the page.

The patent was filed August 9, 2002. How can the patent cover AJAX ? AJAX was invented by Microsoft and published in Internet Explorer 5 in March 1999. The next version, IE 6 in August 27, 2001 had the updated (final) version of the XmlHttpRequest object. IE6 also had a fully developed DOM model. Microsoft used these features for interactive Web applications like Outlook Web Access. Actually, some say the XmlHttpRequest object and the "technology" has been specifically developed for Outlook Web Access (OWA). OWA was available in Exchange 2000.

So, there was at least a product with documentation available. Even if the product handbook does not disclose the "technology", there are for sure developer documents, which explain XmlHttpRequest.

I know there were, because we used XmlHttpRequest in a project in 2002 before the patent was filed, before XmlHttpRequest became known as AJAX and before AJAX lost it's X(ML) and became AJAJ (Asynchronous HTTP and JSON).

Screenshot of the project, where a bluehands project for a german energy company violated the Eolas patent before it was even filed.

_happy_violating()

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