It's getting closer and closer to check-writing time for Steve Ballmer, as the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit has just upheld a decision that would see Microsoft Word and Office banned from sale starting January 11. If you'll recall, Microsoft lost a patent infringement suit against XML specialists i4i back in May when it was found that Word's handling of .xml, .docx, and .docm files infringed upon i4i's patented XML handling algorithms, but the injunction against further Word sales was put on hold pending the results of this appeal. Now that Microsoft has lost once again, we'd expect either another appeal and request for the injunction to be stayed, this time to the Supreme Court, or for a settlement between these two that would end this whole mess right now. We'll see what happens -- stay tuned.
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