Tuesday, October 19, 2004

CUBAN PATENT IDEA GIVEAWAY: Mark Cuban, who sold Broadcast.com to Yahoo for $5.7 billion and is now president of HDNet, a provider of high-definition TV programming, rattled off a trio of ideas he said were potentially patentable, though he was not personally inclined to file the applications.

"These are businesses I would be looking at starting and software I would look at writing if I were so inclined," Cuban wrote Sunday in his blog. "Instead, I decided to throw them out--free for all...If I were a patent terrorist like some, I could probably even patent these ideas."

Cuban's first idea is a software program that takes advantage of the time TiVo subscribers spend watching their commercials fast-forward. Where subscribers now sit glued to the blur of fast-forwarding frames, Cuban suggests displaying a static advertisement.

Cuban's second idea is for software that would let people use the Internet and VOD services to piece together their own TV schedules and share them with friends.

The third idea, following the second, would let people emulate existing cable TV programming.

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