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Control4 Attempting to Patent the Portal Concept


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I really hope this fails.  According to this article in CE Pro, Control4 has applied for a patent for a system that forwards commands via a cloud server.  Essentially what many others are already doing including the UDI Portal, Chamberlain MyQ, Ecobee, RainMachine, etc...

Here is the abstract according to the article:

A method for providing secure remote access by a controller is described. The method includes establishing a link through a security service to a client device via a cloud server based on a security token from the client device. The method also includes receiving a command message from the client device for an application program interface (API) located within the controller. The command message is forwarded by the cloud server. The method further includes producing an automation command based on the command message. The API interprets the command message.


I am really hoping that someone comes forward with a case of prior art or can prove that it is an obvious solution by 21st century standards.

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Based on just what you provided there must be more to this because that is common all across the world and used by hundreds of companies world wide. Then again none of this surprises me in the least because the American Patent Office has been abused for eons and some of the things they have allowed like Apples stupid patent on a rectangle shape is purely horse sh^t.


Keeping in mind way back in the day when Motorola tried to patent the Star Tac flip phone the same Patent Office said its too common?!?!


Really not one single vendor in the history of man has ever created a phone that flips open and its considered too common? Yet the shape of a phone is considered ground breaking and Earth shattering?!?!


Just stupid  . . .


Then again the same patent office said its OK to patent a sound - so none of this surprises me in the least! 

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Its a worthy concern. I experienced an identical problem in the early 2000s with contact centers. There was a guy named Ronald Katz who essentially had a patent on CTI.. computer telephony integration. Any integration between person/phone/computer.


The patent's application was broad, and even after his death, his estate went after the largest call centers. We wasted a lot of time on it.



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MS patented indenting paragraphs.


Since th USPO only has about 4 hours to review any application, the patent requestor has to swear there is no prior art and it is never checked (QA).


Then, usually the next day after swearing they have researched it and there is no prior art they begin suing everybody for violating their patent rights.


It has become a joke in the industry, and making our wallets thin, products expensive, companies fold up, and lawyers rich.


But the USPO has no liability in the matter when they screw up.



Another reason so many are moving to other countries where the USPO can't reach them. We better start teaching our children Manadarin or we might be left behind as a minority.



Ronald. you should have stuck with Bonzo,

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IIRC it was a total manpower hours available, divided by the number of patents they pass per time unit.


I couldn't give you references anymore but this is whay the affidavit was instituted. To pass the onus onto the applicant.


My family was involved in a multi-million dollar suit based on this BS and lost. In the end the USPO backtracked and recinded the patent and the damages never paid but the lawyers probably netted a few million out of the commotion as well as a few man-years of labour lost. The patent holder had already put a dozen compaies out of business with the same scare-tactic BS. Ours surprisingly decided to fight and put the BS in i'ts place, eventually.

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