No more plugins in your browser?!

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A federal judgment has been leveled against Microsoft for using the technology of plugins in Internet Explorer. Apparently The University of California owned the patent for plugins prior to their usage in IE. Microsoft is going to appeal (I’d guess to the US Supreme Court). If their appeals are rejected, it looks like we will stop seeing web pages using Flash, Real Media, Windows Media, etc. The average consumer shouldn’t really care about this, because it will be all the web site owners that will have to scramble to make sure their content displays in IE (and other browsers that follow suit). I did see a bug in’s bugzilla bug tracking system, reported by Mitchell Baker (the head of Mozilla Foundation) talking about implementing alternative media standards in Mozilla…(can’t seem to find it again)
Macromedia sponsored a forum to discuss possible solutions to the potential problem, and most of the big players in the industry attended (including Microsoft). They discussed using SMIL, SVG and other open technologies to replace the plugins. Personally, I think it would be a huge improvement over having to always keep up with the stinkin plugins! šŸ˜‰