"Big 3" Facing Port Patent Lawsuit
The bigger "big business" gets, the more lawsuits begin to arise. This time, every member of the "Big 3" is under fire by one party: Fenner Investments based out of Texas. The suit alleges that the three corporations infringed on Fenner's 1998 patent for a "low-voltage port interface."
Apparently, this suit is all about joystick ports, and the plaintiff is seeking damages and an injunction against Sony, Microsoft, and Nintendo. We don't have any further details as of yet, but the patent summary (courtesy of Gamasutra) reads-
"The joystick port interface according the present invention is a low power port which interfaces a typical 5 Volt joystick peripheral device with a lower power computer port. The low-voltage joystick port interface includes a bidirectional buffer circuit and a pulse generator which, together, generate a digital pulse signal, representing a joystick coordinate position, based on an input analog measurement signal."
Patent lawsuits are a dime a dozen, and with all the technological advancements in gaming lately, there could be a whole slew of these obscure suits in the very near future.
1/10/2007 Ben Dutka