Question asked...and answered.
TomTom has become emboldened by us Open Sourcers looking out for it. They aren't just not rolling over. They have filed a counterlawsuit against M$, claiming that M$' Streets And Maps software, specifically the part that connects to a computer's GPS, infringes their patents.
But wait, there's more. TomTom has filed this lawsuit in the state of Virginia. Why Virginia instead of, say, Utah or Washington? Virginia is known in legal circles as the "Rocket Docket." They don't screw around, they get a case heard and done. When you're facing a company notorious for delaying trials as you run out of cash from paying your lawyers, this effectively shuts that down, and means TomTom could potentially get a judgement on its GPS software before any motions are filed.
But wait, there's more. Representing TomTom is Morrissey And Forrester. They are known in legal circles as the "MoFo's". This is by their choice, as it is the domain name for their web site, and they let everyone know it was no accident. They are Novell's lawyers, and are very good at grinding others up. The only lawyers more feared in the business world for sheer legal accumen are the Nazgul, the lawyers who represent IBM. MoFo is a very high profile legal team. Hmm...I wonder how they got involved in the case and how they are getting paid?
But wait, there's more. Today, TomTom joined the Open Innovation Network. This is FOSS' first line of defense against patent lawsuits. All contributed patents (IBM has donated a shitload of them) can only be used if you promise not to sue over patents. Companies like Red Hat can use the patents all they want as long as they don't try assert claims against the holders. And, if Red Hat gets sued, they can use all the patents donated to the OIN for countersuits as a defense. And TomTom just signed up. So now, not only are they protected by the OIN, but the OIN can use the HUGE catalog of patents TomTom has acquired over the years in its defense. Garmin is probably breathing a lot easier now.
So...how much would YOU pay to watch what unfolds?!?