Fugitive Gemstar Founder Henry Yuen Wins 100th Patent

Former Gemstar-TV Guide Chairman and CEO Henry Yuen, father of the modern day interactive program guide, won his 100th U.S. patent earlier this month. That’s a remarkable achievement, especially considering the fact that Yuen, who was convicted on charges of securities fraud in 2006,  has been a fugitive from justice for a decade.

But Yuen won’t be collecting royalty fees for his latest patent any time soon. Rovi Corp. (formerly known as Macrovision) acquired the former Gemstar-TV Guide patent portfolio in 2008 for $2.8 billion.

“As is the case with all of our employees, the inventions created by Mr. Yuen when he was an employee or otherwise associated with Rovi (or its predecessors) are the property of, and solely controlled, by the company,” Rovi Senior Director of Public Relations Stacey Hurwitz told The Donohue Report in an e-mail last summer. “Rovi does not pay Henry and has a significant claim against him should he ever resurface,” Hurwitz added.

Yuen’s latest patent, titled, “Search engine for video and graphics,” is the result of Rovi filing additional claims on a patent that Gemstar originally filed in August 2007.

Abstract: A method of selecting graphic or video files having corresponding locators used to locate such graphic or video files using a computer. Identifiers are created by searching an area within a web page near a graphic or video file for searchable identification terms and searching an area within a web page near links to a graphic or video for searchable identification terms. The identifiers are stored in a database. User requests for graphic or video file content are received and the database of identifiers is searched to find graphic and video files corresponding criteria of the user. Graphic or video file content is then provided to the user.

For more:
– see the patent
– for a list of the 100 U.S. patents that name Yuen as inventor, click here
– see this interview Charlie Rose shot with VCR Plus inventor Yuen in 2002

Claims: 

1. A method of providing video information in response to text based searches comprising: receiving, at a server, a user submission of identifier information with a video file for storage in an electronic storage device, wherein the identifier information comprises a text description of the video file; storing, in the electronic storage device, the identifier information; generating an identifier of the video file based on the identifier information, wherein the generated identifier comprises an author and an owner of the video file; storing the identifier in the electronic storage device; receiving a user input of search criteria matching the identifier; and in response to receiving the user input: determining a location at which the video file is accessible; providing, in a results page, a user-selectable link to the video file based on the determined location; retrieving at least some of the identifier information from the electronic storage device; and providing, in the results page, the retrieved identifier information.

2. The method of claim 1, further comprising providing information about an item, wherein the item is at least one of a product, service, and website that is associated with the video file.

3. The method of claim 1, further comprising receiving an instruction to perform an operation with the video file, wherein the operation comprises one or more of viewing, saving, downloading, and sending.

4. The method of claim 1, wherein the results page is provided through an Internet interface.

5. A system for providing video information in response to text based searches, the system comprising control circuitry configured to: receive, at a server, a user submission of identifier information with a video file for storage in an electronic storage device, wherein the identifier information comprises a text description of the video file; store, in the electronic storage device, the identifier information; generate an identifier of the video file based on the identifier information, wherein the generated identifier comprises an author and an owner of the video file; store the identifier in the electronic storage device; receive, subsequent to the user submission, a user input of search criteria matching the identifier ;and in response to receiving the user input: determine a location at which the video file is accessible; provide, in a results page, a user-selectable link to the video file based on the determined location; retrieve at least some of the identifier information from the electronic storage device; and provide, in the results page, the retrieved identifier information.

6. The system of claim 5, wherein the control circuitry is further configured to provide information about an item, wherein the item is at least one of a product, service, and website that is associated with the video file.

7. The system of claim 5, wherein the control circuitry is further configured to receive an instruction to perform an operation with the video file, wherein the operation comprises one or more of viewing, saving, downloading, and sending.

8. The system of claim 5, wherein the results page is provided through an Internet interface.

9. A non-transitory computer readable storage medium containing program instructions for providing video information in response to text based searches, the instructions comprising: an instruction for receiving, at a server, a user submission of identifier information with a video file for storage in an electronic storage device, wherein the identifier information comprises a text description of the video file; an instruction for storing, in the electronic storage device, the identifier information; an instruction for generating an identifier of the video file based on the identifier information, wherein the generated identifier comprises an author and an owner of the video file; an instruction for storing the identifier in the electronic storage device; an instruction for receiving, subsequent to the user submission, a user input of search criteria matching the identifier; and an instruction for, in response to receiving the user input: determining a location at which the video file is accessible; providing, in a results page, a user-selectable link to the video file based on the determined location; retrieving at least some of the identifier information from the electronic storage device; and providing, in the results page, the retrieved identifier information.

10. The computer readable storage medium of claim 9, further comprising an instructions for providing information about an item, wherein the item is at least one of a product, service, and website that is associated with the video file.

11. The computer readable storage medium of claim 9, further comprising an instructions for performing an operation with the video file, wherein the operation comprises one or more of viewing, saving, downloading, and sending.

12. The computer readable storage medium of claim 9, wherein the results page is provided through an Internet interface.

13. A method for providing a web page that includes user-submitted video file information in response to text based searches, comprising: receiving, at a server and through an Internet interface, a user submission of information with a video file for storage in an electronic storage device; storing, in the electronic storage device, the user-submitted information; generate an identifier of the video file based on the user-submitted information, wherein the generated identifier comprises an author and an owner of the video file; store the identifier in the electronic storage device; receiving, subsequent to the user submission, a user input including a search term; retrieving at least a portion of the user-submitted information about the video file from the electronic storage device when the search term matches the identifier; and generating a web page that includes the retrieved user-submitted information, an image associated with the user-submitted video file, and a selectable link to the user-submitted video file.

14. A non-transitory computer readable storage medium containing program instructions for retrieving video files in response to text based searches, the instructions comprising: an instruction for receiving, at a server and through an Internet interface, a user submission of information with a video file for storage in an electronic storage device; an instruction for storing, in the electronic storage device, the user-submitted information; an instruction for generating an identifier of the video file based on the user-submitted information, wherein the generated identifier comprises an author and an owner of the video file; an instruction for storing the identifier in the electronic storage device; an instruction for matching the identifier to a search term received subsequent to the user submission; an instruction for retrieving at least a portion of the user-submitted information from the electronic storage device when the search term matches the user-submitted information; and an instruction for generating for display a web page that includes the retrieved user-submitted information, an image associated with the user-submitted video file, and a selectable link to the user-submitted video file.