Eolas browser plugin patent upheld

The US Patent Office has upheld the Eolas patent on browser plugins. This is only the latest stage in what will be a long, drawn-out process, and it’s being appealed to the Supreme Court, so it might all change again. From my perspective, though, it’s a good thing. “Plugins” in browsers are bad. Java applets, embedded movies, all bad. I never watch movies embedded in the browser; I get the URL and load it into a proper movie player. I don’t have the Java applet plugin installed. None of this affects my use of the web. The web is, true enough, a marvellous delivery system for all kinds of interesting multimedia content. The browser, though, is not. Browser plugins have non-standard interfaces, are confusing, and break a lot. The only plugin that I use even remotely often is Flash, and I wouldn’t miss it if it went away. I say support Eolas, and let’s keep the web HTML. That is, assuming that the patent doesn’t cover things like images or JavaScript in web pages. If it does then I’ll be less supportive…

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