Services & Software

Yahoo tries to patent "smart drag and drop" (seriously)

How can this not be prior-art?

Via Ars Technica: Yahoo filed a patent for a "smart" drag-and-drop user interface element, which consists of displaying drop targets in proximity to a drag-able selected object.

The patent is currently under public review via Peer to Patent. Here is the summary from the filing.

According to the present invention, methods and apparatus are provided for manipulating objects in a user interface. The user interface includes a first interface object operable to be selected and moved within the user interface. In response to selection and movement of the first interface object in the user interface, at least one additional interface object is presented in the user interface in proximity of the first interface object. Each additional interface object represents a drop target with which the first interface object may be associated.

This patent appears to have lots of prior art issues, but if granted would seem to cover a lot of software and pretty much every Web 2.0 site.

It's still not as ludicrous as Microsoft's attempt at patenting white space in documents.