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Patent For Google's Home Page Approved By USPTO

Category: Internet
Posted: 06:25AM

There have been a lot of complaints about the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) and the way they approve patents and the patents they allow through the system. However, a patent granted to Google on September 1, 2009 may be the most asinine patent yet

While Google has become synonymous search, the website's design is very minimalistic and looks like something that might have been put together by a student during the first week of an HTML 101 class. If you thought it was that simple, you'd be wrong by the USPTO's standards which apparently think the web page is a innovative "graphical user interface for a display screen of a communications terminal."

This could mean trouble for Ask.com, Yahoo, Altavista, and anyone else that has a screen with a few links, a search box, and a couple of buttons. Bing may be ok, since they've taken a fancier approach to the search screen with links on the left and a image on the background.

It took more than five years for this patent to slide through the system; it was originally filed on July 14, 2004. Google also owns a patent for the display of search results which it was granted in 2006, that patent was submitted at the same time as the home page patent.

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Zertz on September 3, 2009 09:37AM
Kingdutch on September 3, 2009 12:36PM
That's just stupid, so if I make a search engine for say my website or my favourite newsgroups to and since I'm a PHP Programmer and not a GUI designer I'll just centre some text and a search box. I'll get sued for copyright infringement? Now if you'd patent a very complex design, that'd be a different story. But I agree with Zertz, this is ridiculous.
Zertz on September 3, 2009 01:00PM
They won't sue you unless you're worth millions ;)
d3bruts1d on September 3, 2009 02:37PM
No, you'd be sued for patent infringement.
Guest comment
Sean on September 16, 2009 11:00AM
It's a design patent, not a utility patent. This means that the scope is pretty much identical to what you see. I think Google had bad counsel -- the patent is worthless. I would never ever advise a client to do something like that. Trust me, none of Google's competitors will pay any attention to this, except note that Google has counsel that, well, stinks.

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