Google Linux servers hit with $5m patent infringement verdict

   Giants are fighting over, we saw Oracle Vs. Google, Apple suing Samsung and in turn Samsung suing Apple for various infringements. Now a small Texas-based company- Bedrock Computer Technologies has sued Google over using Linux on its back-end servers. Google must pay $5 Million in damages to Bedrock. Bedrock Computer Technologies had sued several other outfits including Yahoo!, Amazon.com, Paypal and AOL claiming they infringed on a patent filed in January 1997. The patent describes "a method and apparatus for performing storage and retrieval...that uses the hashing technique with the external chaining method for collision resolution", and the accusation is that companies infringed by using various versions of the Linux kernel on their servers.
   On April 15, an Eastern District jury found that the patent is valid and that Google has intend infringed. Google uses Linux on employee desktops (the so-called Goobuntu flavor) as well as its back-end servers. And since the suit was filed, the company has also used Linux as the basis for its Android and Chrome OS operating systems. A Google spokeswoman said - 
 "Google will continue to defend against attacks like this one on the open source community. The recent explosion in patent litigation is turning the world’s information highway into a toll road, forcing companies to spend millions and millions of dollars defending old, questionable patent claims, and wasting resources that would be much better spent investing in new technologies for users and creating jobs."
  According to the jury verdict, Google infringed two claims in the patent. The first claim describes an information storage and retrieval system comprising:
  • a linked list to store and provide access to records stored in a memory of the system, at least some of the records automatically expiring
  • a record search means utilizing a search key to access the linked list
  • the record search means including a means for identifying and removing at least some of the expired ones of the records from the linked list when the linked list is accessed
  • a means – utilizing the record search means – for accessing the linked list and, at the same time, removing at least some of the expired ones of the records in the linked list
  The second claim also includes a "means for dynamically determining maximum number for the record search means to remove in the accessed linked list of records". The jury found that Google did not provide by a "preponderance of evidence" that these clams were invalid.