Facebook shelled out $550 million dollars to Microsoft, and why you ask? They are working on keeping their company out of the courtroom as much as possible. With that money Facebook has gained access to 600 patents. Facebook was previously sued by Yahoo for patent infringement, and apparently they want to steer clear of these possibilities in the future.
Interesting enough, Microsoft paid AOL $1 billion dollars earlier this month, for access to their patents and some of these are included in the Facebook deal. Facebook has been after certain AOL patents recently and this deal definitely helped them gain access to some.
(via All Things D)