W3C looks for workaround over Apple auto-update patent

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W3C looks for workaround over Apple auto-update patent

Cliff Saran

Apple is having a scrap with the Worldwide Web Consortium (W3C) over a patent from 1995 for running automatic software updates over the internet.

The patent impacts the W3C's widget updates specification, which will enable internet widgets built using Ajax to get updated automatically.

In a statement on its website, Apple said, "Apple believes that W3C should promulgate only royalty-free standards, but should permit individual members to identify and exclude specific patents that they are not willing to license on a royalty-free basis. To accomplish this, a W3C member would be required to disclose and license to any practitioner all essential patents of a W3C standard."

In response, the W3C has launched an appeal to find information about software update systems available before June 1995 that offer a viable solution that may apply to the use of updates in widgets. "Such information could suggest ways to define a specification that can achieve the working group's goals without implementers infringing on the disclosed patent," the W3C said.


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