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(Ars Technica)   Newegg saves e-commerce from the grip of trolls - again   (arstechnica.com) divider line 142
    More: Hero, Alcatel-Lucent, newegg, Intuit, Zappos, e-commerces, QVC, Bell Labs  
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22938 clicks; posted to Main » on 16 May 2013 at 12:44 PM (1 year ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2013-05-16 03:21:17 PM  

Theaetetus: No, they invalidated it totally. I'm surprised that, given that, they also found non-infringement. Basically "this method is so common and well known that everyone has been doing it for decades, and NewEgg doesn't do it" is a logically odd outcome.


That is weird. I know the law is allowed to be logically weird, but this seems like a special kind of weird.

If you cited this as precedent, couldn't opposing counsel then also cite it as an argument against because of the logically inconsistent findings? (Would the judge's head explode?) I don't know how to think up a hypothetical here, just wondering.
 
2013-05-16 03:22:16 PM  

Choestoe: Another Government Employee: Choestoe: Rwa2play: Red_Fox: Lucent has sucked ever since the LT Win modem.

Wow! That takes me back a bit but yeah, remember buying that thing at CompUSA and returned it the next day because it couldn't do squat.  Got myself a Hayes modem instead and used it until I got broadband.

CSB time: I worked at Hayes for 14 years. Toward the end, we were using both Rockwell and Lucent chipsets for the modems. In general, the Lucent ones were LESS buggy. But the Win Modem was a total POS in so very many ways. In all cases, though, we did a lot of custom firmware to work around issues where possible and to implement additional features. But I remember having to test many modems due to "upgrades" in the basic chipset.


/QA Manager was the last title I had there
//Hayes modems were pricey but damn good...until near the end when things were spiraling down the drain
///Best company I ever worked for, particularly in the early years.

Did two contracts there.
Dennis was truly an innovator and his Ex Wife is truly SPECIAL.
Anything DSL related pretty much evolved from that company.

Heh - which ex-wife? Both cost him a pile of money, but in different ways...


Melinda.

She killed the company.

Yeah, Ming did cost him some dough, though.
 
2013-05-16 03:22:42 PM  

gweilo8888: Alcatel's products are also utter shiat.


Amen brother (or sister).  At work I get to work on Cisco's, Juniper's, and ALU 7750 routers.  Of the 3 , the ALU box has the crappiest OS I have ever seen.  I admit I'm a Cisco guy, and I like the Juniper stuff too, but when I see an order to work on the ALU box I just know it's going to be a fight.
 
2013-05-16 03:23:53 PM  
They're getting my business one way or the other.

I just ordered a network card from them and it showed up 15 hours after I placed the order. I've never had online service like that.

On top of that I noticed that I ordered the wrong part once it got here. It was totally my fault but they're taking the return and waving the restocking fee even though I already opened the package.

I've ordered other stuff from them and I've never had cause to complain.

Newegg rocks.
 
2013-05-16 03:30:41 PM  

Dr Dreidel: Theaetetus: No, they invalidated it totally. I'm surprised that, given that, they also found non-infringement. Basically "this method is so common and well known that everyone has been doing it for decades, and NewEgg doesn't do it" is a logically odd outcome.

That is weird. I know the law is allowed to be logically weird, but this seems like a special kind of weird.

If you cited this as precedent, couldn't opposing counsel then also cite it as an argument against because of the logically inconsistent findings? (Would the judge's head explode?) I don't know how to think up a hypothetical here, just wondering.


Nope... it's non-precedential for one, and the result comes out with NewEgg winning either way, so I'm not sure why you'd even try to cite it. You could try the Samsung appeal of "the inconsistency indicates the jury didn't understand the instructions", but it wouldn't change the outcome, since the patents were found invalid.
If anything, it points to a flaw in the Texas jury verdict form... In most other jurisdictions, the jury is asked  first if the patents are valid, and  then asked "if the answer to the previous question was yes, then does the defendant infringe?"  For some odd reason, this form put them in reverse order, and didn't include the linking bit.
 
2013-05-16 03:30:52 PM  
For those Newegg fans that want to celebrate with Newegg by buying something from the site, I might suggest this NAS.  I bought it last year, RAIDed two 2TB drives, and it's f-ing sweet!

It has it's on little O/S, apps to make it a home cloud, etc.  I plugged it into my ASUS router, and simplified media access for my wife.  She watches movies on it from the Xbox and Roku and her Nexus 7.  Now she loves it.

(Newegg, you can send the check payable to "FinFangFark")

/And I love Lee Cheng's quotes...talk about a boot to the ass after the fact.
 
2013-05-16 03:41:26 PM  

Theaetetus: You could try the Samsung appeal of "the inconsistency indicates the jury didn't understand the instructions", but it wouldn't change the outcome, since the patents were found invalid.


That mostly answers it.

// not that you asked, but my favorite episode of L&O was where Jack ends up separately trying two defendants for firing the same gun in the same murder (ADA Harmon handles the other case)
// IIRC, one of the defendants is Big Pete
// speaking of weird law/precedent
 
2013-05-16 03:47:04 PM  
what the hell happened to Lucent, they used to make great stuff
 
2013-05-16 03:47:24 PM  

TheShavingofOccam123: Satanic_Hamster: mongbiohazard: Oh yeah, and many years ago I had a problem with a CPU I bought from Newegg. When I opened the package it was chipped. It took exactly one phone call - and 0 arguing - to get them to ship me out a new one, which I received before the one I was returning even had a chance to make it back to them. I've bought lots of stuff from them since then, and referred many people to their website.

Newegg is excellent on returns / handling defective products.  Bought a few laptop last December, came with a dead pixel, they had a return slip to me that evening.  Full refund including shipping, didn't have to pay for return shipping, got the new laptop two days later.

Newegg.com once in a while sells these things for $28.



I love mine--it didn't come with the lid holder or a ring--but for $28 I wouldn't be heart-broken if I dropped it or it went up in flames. I use the thing on the patio mostly anyways.


What is it?
 
2013-05-16 03:47:53 PM  

DeathCipris: Rwa2play: Red_Fox: Lucent has sucked ever since the LT Win modem.

Wow! That takes me back a bit but yeah, remember buying that thing at CompUSA and returned it the next day because it couldn't do squat.  Got myself a Hayes modem instead and used it until I got broadband.

That LT Win modem was a POS...I replaced it with a US Robotics 56k modem. Loved that thing and it worked like a damn champ.


Smartest thing US Robotics did was ensuring basically any semi-major BBS you dialed into was using their gear. IIRC they were practically giving the things away to BBS owners.

I worked for Motorola back in the day, and got to play with some damned cool gear there. The Motorola 3265 was a hot little number, incredibly configurable and easily my favorite of all the modems I ever used. And some of the stuff from well before my time -- but still supported -- was awesome. I remember one of the industrial modems was about the size of three or four shoe boxes, and full of wire-wrap circuit boards.

/Bet I'm the only one here who remembers the E-Tech Bullet Modem -- mediocre performance but it looked like a Ferrari alongside everybody else's extruded aluminum housings.
 
2013-05-16 03:53:13 PM  
"Mark Fleming is phenomenal, a great lawyer," said Lee Cheng, Newegg's chief legal officer, in an interview with Ars. "I heard him argue. But even he can't make bad facts go away."

What a polite way to say "Hey Mark, how does my ass taste?"
 
2013-05-16 03:54:43 PM  
This just won the egg my business for the foreseeable future...

"The bad news is, we're running out of lawsuits. There are fewer trolls for us to fight."
 
2013-05-16 03:56:15 PM  

Sim Tree: TheShavingofOccam123: Satanic_Hamster: mongbiohazard: Oh yeah, and many years ago I had a problem with a CPU I bought from Newegg. When I opened the package it was chipped. It took exactly one phone call - and 0 arguing - to get them to ship me out a new one, which I received before the one I was returning even had a chance to make it back to them. I've bought lots of stuff from them since then, and referred many people to their website.

Newegg is excellent on returns / handling defective products.  Bought a few laptop last December, came with a dead pixel, they had a return slip to me that evening.  Full refund including shipping, didn't have to pay for return shipping, got the new laptop two days later.

Newegg.com once in a while sells these things for $28.

I love mine--it didn't come with the lid holder or a ring--but for $28 I wouldn't be heart-broken if I dropped it or it went up in flames. I use the thing on the patio mostly anyways.

What is it?


It's a convection oven. Bright light, big bowl, powerful fan. But it keeps the house clear of really disgusting food odors.
 
2013-05-16 04:00:14 PM  

Rwa2play: Red_Fox: Lucent has sucked ever since the LT Win modem.

Wow! That takes me back a bit but yeah, remember buying that thing at CompUSA and returned it the next day because it couldn't do squat.  Got myself a Hayes modem instead and used it until I got broadband.


Practical Peripherals and US Robotics
 
2013-05-16 04:05:00 PM  

Another Government Employee: Choestoe: Another Government Employee: Choestoe: Rwa2play: Red_Fox: Lucent has sucked ever since the LT Win modem.

Wow! That takes me back a bit but yeah, remember buying that thing at CompUSA and returned it the next day because it couldn't do squat.  Got myself a Hayes modem instead and used it until I got broadband.

CSB time: I worked at Hayes for 14 years. Toward the end, we were using both Rockwell and Lucent chipsets for the modems. In general, the Lucent ones were LESS buggy. But the Win Modem was a total POS in so very many ways. In all cases, though, we did a lot of custom firmware to work around issues where possible and to implement additional features. But I remember having to test many modems due to "upgrades" in the basic chipset.


/QA Manager was the last title I had there
//Hayes modems were pricey but damn good...until near the end when things were spiraling down the drain
///Best company I ever worked for, particularly in the early years.

Did two contracts there.
Dennis was truly an innovator and his Ex Wife is truly SPECIAL.
Anything DSL related pretty much evolved from that company.

Heh - which ex-wife? Both cost him a pile of money, but in different ways...

Melinda.

She killed the company.

Yeah, Ming did cost him some dough, though.


Both share  lot of blame, but there were many other poor decisions thrown in there. I often thought someone should have written a book - it could have been a best seller. But just to name a few:

1. The conversion from the Vax to a LAN system for internal email and data storage fiasco
2. The Please database
3. LANStep <shudder>
4. Totally botching the JIT transition in the warehouse.
5. Did I mention LANStep?
6. The fiasco with the merger with the company in MD whose name I have totally forgotten
7. Oh yeah...LANStep

The whole DSL and Cable modem stuff was handled poory from the business end. But yes, a LOT of DSL and Cable modem tech came out of Hayes ultimately. And got used by others.
 
2013-05-16 04:07:34 PM  

inglixthemad: Rwa2play: Red_Fox: Lucent has sucked ever since the LT Win modem.

Wow! That takes me back a bit but yeah, remember buying that thing at CompUSA and returned it the next day because it couldn't do squat.  Got myself a Hayes modem instead and used it until I got broadband.

Practical Peripherals and US Robotics


Hayes owned Practical Peripherals hte last few years of its life. Why? Wait for it....

Patent issues. The  "Escape code with Guard Time" patent. To this day i can't decide if Hayes was patent trolling before it was fashionable, or was just protecting its invention. Mainly because the invention was fairly simple. Not that it matters one whit now.
 
2013-05-16 04:17:21 PM  

dletter: Public companies have to worry about shareholders, so, everything comes down to dollars and cents... it will be cheaper in the next 10 years to just give them some money than fight it in court, so, cave.


Trolls carefully calibrate their demands so that it's cheaper to cave than litigate.

Recently the porn-piracy-troll Prenda Law got smacked down (this was on Fark), and fined by the judge an amount calculated to be just less than the cost of litigating an appeal. (He explicitly said that's where the amount came from).
 
2013-05-16 04:24:22 PM  
I've been contemplating where to buy a NUC, I think this article just made my decision.
 
2013-05-16 04:29:15 PM  
Alcatel Lucent, meanwhile, they drag out some random VP-who happens to be a decorated Navy veteran, who happens to be handsome and has a beautiful wife and kids-but the guy didn't know what patents were being asserted. What a joke.

....Otherwise know as the Republican enemy of the U.S.A.
 
2013-05-16 04:41:08 PM  

BKITU: Well, they're getting my business for the foreseeable future.


This, however I've done business with them for many years now. I'll sometimes go with Tiger Direct if they're considerably cheaper, but I think I'll just stick with Newegg now. Anyone who's willing to fight these idiot trolls has earned my money.
 
2013-05-16 05:09:49 PM  

Gaseous Anomaly: dletter: Public companies have to worry about shareholders, so, everything comes down to dollars and cents... it will be cheaper in the next 10 years to just give them some money than fight it in court, so, cave.

Trolls carefully calibrate their demands so that it's cheaper to cave than litigate.

Recently the porn-piracy-troll Prenda Law got smacked down (this was on Fark), and fined by the judge an amount calculated to be just less than the cost of litigating an appeal. (He explicitly said that's where the amount came from).


I concur... but, my point was that a private company with ownership at the top that goes "F.U., I don't care if it costs me a lot of money, I'm going to fight you" is much different than a public company that just goes to the accounting dept. and says "What is the cheapest way to get rid of this?".   The private company will fight it even if it is not in their monetary favor, just because.
 
2013-05-16 05:17:16 PM  

BKITU: Well, they're getting my business for the foreseeable future.


This. Sometimes Amazon is a few bucks cheaper but I buy from Newegg unless the difference is pretty significant. I'm delighted that someone who is actually capable of standing up to patent trolls (ie not some small business) is doing so for once.
 
2013-05-16 06:31:08 PM  
I built a new computer from parts about a month ago.  i5, 8 gig memory, Radion HD 7950 graphics, an 120 gig SSD boot drive, 1TB HDD, a high end wireless card, water cooling, etc.  A nice gaming system.  Parts and the OS ran about $1350 total, if I remember right.  Newegg didn't carry the case I wanted, but they got all the rest of my business, in part because I've read stories like this one before.
 
2013-05-16 07:41:11 PM  

Walker: BKITU: Well, they're getting my business for the foreseeable future.

They always get my business.




Treasure Chest Computer Systems.

Before that.
farm4.static.flickr.com
That magazine used to be 3 times fatter.
 
2013-05-16 07:59:16 PM  
Go egg
 
2013-05-16 08:38:08 PM  

Dr Dreidel: Mike Chewbacca: Who the hell is NewEgg and how can I give them my money as a big thank you for doing this?

NewEgg.com.

// it's dot-com!

EddyKilowatt: Bell Labs was a national treasure. It has always fascinated me that there was such a strong civic ethic at Bell that they would plow millions (probably billions in CY dollars) into blue-sky research... a lot of which benefited them, obviously, but even more of which has proven to benefit society at large.

Google does this - they actually allow their employees to dedicate up to 25% of their working hours to blue-sky stuff like that. IIRC, it's how we ended up with Maps, Reader, Mail and more than one other "in-the-pipe" tech.

Patents are supposed to be used for furthering innovation - (again IIRC) just sitting on a patent long enough can invalidate it, or maybe it's only when the holder actively prevents anything from happening with it.

// not a lawyer


That would be a brilliant way to stop patent trolls. Put out the idea of the patent or its invalidated.
 
2013-05-16 08:39:11 PM  
wow, Computer Shopper brings back memories.  That phone book was a good 2-3 hours of me pouring over ads.
 
2013-05-16 08:47:58 PM  
Newegg has the WORST customer service. Will never give them my personal or my company's business again.
 
2013-05-16 08:54:53 PM  

twfeline: Newegg has the WORST customer service. Will never give them my personal or my company's business again.


And yet, most people seem to disagree with you.

Maybe you're just the worst customer.
 
2013-05-16 09:42:55 PM  

Theaetetus: Dr Dreidel: Theaetetus: No, they invalidated it totally. I'm surprised that, given that, they also found non-infringement. Basically "this method is so common and well known that everyone has been doing it for decades, and NewEgg doesn't do it" is a logically odd outcome.

That is weird. I know the law is allowed to be logically weird, but this seems like a special kind of weird.

If you cited this as precedent, couldn't opposing counsel then also cite it as an argument against because of the logically inconsistent findings? (Would the judge's head explode?) I don't know how to think up a hypothetical here, just wondering.

Nope... it's non-precedential for one, and the result comes out with NewEgg winning either way, so I'm not sure why you'd even try to cite it. You could try the Samsung appeal of "the inconsistency indicates the jury didn't understand the instructions", but it wouldn't change the outcome, since the patents were found invalid.
If anything, it points to a flaw in the Texas jury verdict form... In most other jurisdictions, the jury is asked  first if the patents are valid, and  then asked "if the answer to the previous question was yes, then does the defendant infringe?"  For some odd reason, this form put them in reverse order, and didn't include the linking bit.


I don't see that this is logically impossible. If the patent is invalid because someone did it before, and you are not currently doing it. Both things can be true simultaneously: Someone else did it in the past, just not you.
 
2013-05-16 09:59:30 PM  

StoPPeRmobile: That magazine used to be 3 times fatter.


The first computer I ever bought came out of an ad in Computer Shopper.

16 MHz 386sx. It may have had a whole 1GB of memory. It had a SoundBlaster and (I think) a Tseng Labs video card. And it came with a 14-inch Sony Trinitron CRT monitor.

/Ah, memories.
 
2013-05-16 10:14:57 PM  
I needed a new 3TB hard drive, and I'd normally go straight to Amazon to get it, but I bought from NewEgg instead.  Kudos!!
 
2013-05-16 10:16:07 PM  

twfeline: Newegg has the WORST customer service. Will never give them my personal or my company's business again.


I've bought a ton of stuff from them over maybe 5 years at work, 100% reliable and fast.. I've returned stuff, called their billing, called their shipping, and gotten a few favors like when I've been over my 30 days. I'll always check Newegg first, and I'll pay a couple bucks more with them if I have to versus a site I've never used before. I don't need to deal with their customer service much, but I can't think of a single time I've felt they screwed me, even on accident.
 
2013-05-16 10:20:02 PM  

Satanic_Hamster: Maybe you're just the worst customer.


or a troll.. geez
 
2013-05-16 10:21:03 PM  

Sczi: twfeline: Newegg has the WORST customer service. Will never give them my personal or my company's business again.

I've bought a ton of stuff from them over maybe 5 years at work, 100% reliable and fast.. I've returned stuff, called their billing, called their shipping, and gotten a few favors like when I've been over my 30 days. I'll always check Newegg first, and I'll pay a couple bucks more with them if I have to versus a site I've never used before. I don't need to deal with their customer service much, but I can't think of a single time I've felt they screwed me, even on accident.


Eh.  You know how some people are.  THEY didn't get their problem resolved once to their satisfaction, that means that company has the WORST customer service of ALL TIME OF ANY COMPANY.

Doesn't matter if they were being unreasonable or were wrong to start with.  Nope.  The customer is always right and it's the responsibility of the company to make them happy no matter what!
 
2013-05-16 10:23:09 PM  

Sczi: Satanic_Hamster: Maybe you're just the worst customer.

or a troll.. geez


Trolls ARE the worst customers.
 
2013-05-16 10:54:35 PM  
NewEgg is a California company so as a CA resident I have to pay sales tax whenever I buy something from them.

I still buy just about everything from them when I'm building a PC.  Even with the contribution to Governor Moonbeam (I'm not being deprecating, I voted for the guy) their prices are still usually better than everyone else, and even when not their customer service makes it worth the extra few bucks.
 
2013-05-16 11:14:46 PM  

The Flexecutioner: wow, Computer Shopper brings back memories.  That phone book was a good 2-3 hours of me pouring over ads.


And it made an amazing doorstop (well, two or three) when you were done with it.
 
2013-05-16 11:51:12 PM  

Sim Tree: Theaetetus: Dr Dreidel: Theaetetus: No, they invalidated it totally. I'm surprised that, given that, they also found non-infringement. Basically "this method is so common and well known that everyone has been doing it for decades, and NewEgg doesn't do it" is a logically odd outcome.

That is weird. I know the law is allowed to be logically weird, but this seems like a special kind of weird.

If you cited this as precedent, couldn't opposing counsel then also cite it as an argument against because of the logically inconsistent findings? (Would the judge's head explode?) I don't know how to think up a hypothetical here, just wondering.

Nope... it's non-precedential for one, and the result comes out with NewEgg winning either way, so I'm not sure why you'd even try to cite it. You could try the Samsung appeal of "the inconsistency indicates the jury didn't understand the instructions", but it wouldn't change the outcome, since the patents were found invalid.
If anything, it points to a flaw in the Texas jury verdict form... In most other jurisdictions, the jury is asked  first if the patents are valid, and  then asked "if the answer to the previous question was yes, then does the defendant infringe?"  For some odd reason, this form put them in reverse order, and didn't include the linking bit.

I don't see that this is logically impossible. If the patent is invalid because someone did it before, and you are not currently doing it. Both things can be true simultaneously: Someone else did it in the past, just not you.


No, it's not impossible... just unlikely, specifically in this case because of how broad the patent claim is. Like, under one reading, Fark would infringe it, as would almost every other website (Zombo.com excepted). Like I said, if I had a patent claiming "sending a signal from one computer to another," it would be invalid over tons of prior art. You could also claim that you didn't do it, and that's not impossible if you're Ted Kaczynski... but if you're not living in a shack in the woods, you probably do do it.
 
2013-05-17 02:03:50 AM  

Cybernetic: StoPPeRmobile: That magazine used to be 3 times fatter.

The first computer I ever bought came out of an ad in Computer Shopper.

16 MHz 386sx. It may have had a whole 1GB of memory. It had a SoundBlaster and (I think) a Tseng Labs video card. And it came with a 14-inch Sony Trinitron CRT monitor.

/Ah, memories.


I suspect you mean 1 MB.  A 386SX had only 24 address lines and could address only 16 MB of memory.
 
2013-05-17 04:46:17 AM  

Lee Jackson Beauregard: Cybernetic: StoPPeRmobile: That magazine used to be 3 times fatter.

The first computer I ever bought came out of an ad in Computer Shopper.

16 MHz 386sx. It may have had a whole 1GB of memory. It had a SoundBlaster and (I think) a Tseng Labs video card. And it came with a 14-inch Sony Trinitron CRT monitor.

/Ah, memories.

I suspect you mean 1 MB.  A 386SX had only 24 address lines and could address only 16 MB of memory.


MB. I had a SX, alias crippled-bus 386
 
2013-05-17 11:44:29 PM  

Random Discord: Ditto. And I love the fact that for 99% of the items I order, I receive them the following day!


newegg's shipping is awesome. i've ordered late in the day (like dinner time late) and had it delivered to work the next day. now that's from memphis to new orleans and then delivered. which in just over 12 hours is pretty impressive.

all my current computers were built from parts from newegg. and most of the older ones too :)
 
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