Current Status: The Notice of Allowance for this application was canceled.
So much for ‘we now have six months to file our statement of use for the trademark, and will decide what we will do during that time‘… Oh well, I guess I won’t bother sending them my resume any time soon.
Update: Seems we’re not out of the woods yet, the notice of allowance has been canceled and it’s back under examination, but presumably the window for opposition is still closed so it’s up to USPTO now. No new documents have been added to the file as yet.
2008-08-06 – Case Returned To Examination
2008-08-05 – Notice of Allowance canceled
2008-07-08 – Notice of allowance – mailed
2008-04-15 – Published for opposition
Update: Computerworld eventually picked this up around 21:00 UTC. U.S. patent office to revisit Dell’s ‘cloud computing’ trademark The company had received near-final approval of the moniker. IP attorney suspects a primary (senior) examiner “looked at it and probably agreed with some of the arguments that were made public.”. They also mention that Dell own cloudcomputing.com but who cares?
Update: 7 August 2008 07:00 UTC New documents filed by USPTO: ‘Prosecution History for Canceling NOA‘ and ‘ITU Unit Action‘. According to the various trademark statuses this relates to ‘Intent to Use’ applications, but there doesn’t appear to be any other useful information. According to internetnews.com ‘Reasons for withdrawal could include a late filing of an extension of time to oppose, or a late opposition, before the allowance was issued. There may also be some manner of informality that was caught that the Office believes needs to be fixed. Or, in fact, The Office may have reviewed the application and determined that the mark is in fact generic and, as such, is barred from registration, and is returning the application to the Examiner to issue the appropriate refusal.‘ Jessica Litman also said ‘I expect the media coverage was what inspired the cancellation‘.
Update: According to John Dvorak who ‘tried all [he] could and did not find any such usage before 2007‘ ‘Dell has every right to cloud computing trademark‘. I guess he didn’t try searching for ‘cloud computing 2006‘ because then he would have found this little chestnut from Eric Schmidt as noted by ZDnet on 23 August 2006:
We call it cloud computing – they should be in a ‘cloud’ somewhere.
Something similar for 2005 ought to turn up this press release:
Following a successful one-year trial of the ‘Cloud Computing’ initiative…
There’s also plenty of discussion about the various components of cloud computing too, like these 2003 predictions for 2004. And let’s not forget the NYT article I found from half a dozen years beforehand. On the other hand I’ve had a quick look for Dell being in any way associated with cloud computing before March 2007 and turned up nothing.