Yesterday, The Black Blog turned one year. There were many ups and downs, nice experiences on events and at other ocations,and eventually my PhD project developed more quickly than I expected. Not everything made it to this blog, but still its worth to look back and recapitulate.
After the TENCompetence winter school I pretty much abandoned this blog. This did not mean that I was on vacation, but that I have been pretty busy in writing papers for workshops, conferences, and journals. There was a paper for the CHI Nederland workshop in Amsterdam, a paper for the TENCompetence Open Workshop in Madrid, one for the special track on Technology Support for Self-Organized Learners at the 4th EduMedia Conference in Salzburg in June, an article for the IEEE Transactions on Learning Technologies, and finally a paper for the ECTEL2008 conference. Also I attened the quaterly TENCompetence meeting. As you can expect, my fingers cramped and my mind was empty after all this thoughtful writing.
Some time ago, BlackBoard submitted a patent proposal to the US Patent and Trademark Office. At 25th March this patent has been rejected with respect to all of BlackBoard's claims. It is important that the comments on the rejection identify that 36 out of the 44 claims were fully rejected as "unpatentable" per se. For the remaining eight claims, BlackBoard failed to provide evidence that their "invention" is not just a combination of old (read existing) elements. These claims are thus "unpatentable" by law.