Archive of UserLand's first discussion group, started October 5, 1998.

Re: GIFs get expensive

Author:Eric Kidd
Posted:8/26/1999; 1:44:27 PM
Topic:GIFs get expensive
Msg #:10007 (In response to 10005)
Prev/Next:10006 / 10008

(I'm speaking for myself, not for UserLand.)

Does your site use GIFs? Then Unisys says you owe them some money; possibly a lot of money.

Did I mention that I think software patents are silly? :-)

More to the point, the Unisys patent covers LZW compression (and possibly decompression, though there's some disagreement on this subject). A web server neither compresses nor decompresses GIFs. It merely transmits them across the network.

Now, I am not a lawyer, but I don't think the Unisys patent covers transmission of LZW-compressed data. Somehow, I doubt Unisys has a leg to stand on in this case.

(I'm going to look up their patent and post a link here in a minute.)


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