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From: Drummond Reed (
Date: Thu Sep 28 2000 - 09:31:30 PDT

> >>Robert S. Thau wrote:
> > >What kills it for me, though, is that the license covers the client
> > >side only; OneName is explicitly retaining all rights to the patent
> > >claims which cover operation of the central directory. Which means
> > >that, as Strata has pointed out, if you want to use their tech, you're
> > >stuck with them or their licensees, even if they screw up or sell out.
> > >This is not the sort of thing I like to see in a privacy guard.
> >>
> > Adam Engst replied:
> >
> > Drummond will have to respond to this. My distinct belief is that
> > nothing in the so-called "Reserved Technology Area" is required for
> > the operation of XNS.

> Robert S. Thau replied:
>Well, here's what I was going on, from the patent license agreement:
> Without limitation, RESERVED TECHNOLOGY AREA includes Directory
> Service Objects described in column 102, line 27 to column 105,
> line 51 of the '325 Patent; Payment Service Objects described
> U.S. Patent No. 5,862,325 (the "'325 Patent") in column 119, line
> 13 to column 123, line 15 of the '325 Patent; Feedback Service
> Objects described in column 124, line 21 to column 128, line 30
> of the '325 Patent; and Schedule Control described in column 136,
> line 28 to column 141, line 46 of the '325 Patent; and any
> service, method or system which does not rely upon and use the
>I'll admit I was assuming that the Directory Service Objects claims
>covered the operation of a root server --- I really should have
>examined the patent itself, but I have real trouble reading patentese.
>Still, if that's not the point of the RTA, I'm a bit perplexed at what
>At any rate, clarification from Mr. Drummond would certainly be

Drummond replies:

Absolutely no way that any of the Reserved Technology Area covers anything
required to run the root. That's not what Directory Service Objects are (or
any of the Service Objects mentioned in this section, for that matter). The
goal here was to reserve a very small portion of the patents to allow
OneName to have a prayer of competing with the Elephants on certain
value-added services (stuff that's way "above the line" of the Core
Technology Area) as the XNS platform grows. But none of these even remotely
prevent any server-side or client-side implementation. That's whole goal of
open-sourcing the XNS server software.

To see how narrow the areas above are, you have to read the cited sections
of the patent spec itself - it's online at

Don't hesitate to drill into this and ask questions - Adam and I and the
other XNSORG founders worked for months to make sure that the patents were
going to be used the right way to support an open platform, and the reserved
area is but a tiny fraction that won't have any value at all unless the
platform succeeds as a whole.


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