Paul ALlen is referring to codes and other functions which he helped finance for Interval Research Corp. The company is a defunct Palo Alto, Calif.-based lab and incubator that Allen invested $100 million in during the internet bubble. Allen still owns the patents.
The suit was already filed at the federal cour in Seattle and named Apple, Google, AOL, eBay, Facebook, Netflix, Office Depot, OfficeMax, Staples, Yahoo and Google’s YouTube subsidiary.
Paul Allen did not file the suit as co-founder of Microsoft, instead he filed the suit under his company Interval Licensing. The suit he filed claims that the companies are in violation of four patents that are similar to technology used by many companies today.
A report quotes two patents in particular which Paul Allen say's the companies have violated:
For instance, one patent allows a site to offer suggestions to consumers for items related to what they’re currently viewing, or in the case of social networking, related to online activities of others. Another patent allows readers of a news story to quickly locate articles related to a particular subject. The remaining two enable ads, stock quotes, news updates or video images to flash on a computer screen.