Google has been sued over use of clusters of computers maintaining a coherent networked file-cache. The patent was issued in 1999 but involves nothing new as all the concepts were well established a decade earlier: networks, clusters, caches, and coherence. This is another example where a patent was issued for an idea rather than an invention. Software-patents should be trashed. I hope Google brings a vigorous counter-attack including that software patents are illegal.
One cannot patent an idea and this is an idea. It’s also an idea about pure logic rather than any improvement in technology. There’s no skill involved, just a goal and the steps to reach it. Anyone can figure out that if you want to go to that tree over there one should put one foot ahead of the other in the general direction until success is achieved. The need for information requires a message be sent. That’s all there is to this.
As we saw in Oracle v Google, Google was content to attack the particular patents and claims by “prior art” and patentability. They did not seem to go after software-patents per se. Let’s hope they attack the root of the problem, software-patents, as well this time.