What’s Up Federal Circuit

Below is a post from Patent Attorney Gene Quinn, author of the blog IPWatchdog.com. Gene is complaining of the same topic of my Friday post entitled “Known Technology is Not Abstract” and regarding the absurd position of the several Federal Circuit Justices asserting inclusion of an “abstract idea” within a patent claim as defeating patent…

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PROVISIONAL PATENT APPLICATIONS

Introduction Provisional patent applications can be of great benefit in protecting innovation. They must be used, however, with a full understanding of the limited protection provided. Discussion A provisional application is a patent application. It is a type of a utility patent application. It may be thought of as a temporary application good for only…

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OVERCOMING AN OBVIOUSNESS REJECTION

Introduction Rejections under 35 U.S.C. 103 are the most common basis for an examiner refusing to allow issuance of a patent.  Section 103 outlines an improvement or modification that would be obvious to a hypothetical person of ordinary skill in the art is not patentable. I have already written on this topic, i.e., “overcoming an…

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PATENT APPLICATION FLOW CHART

  Introduction The following is a simplified description on one possible chain of events that occur in the patenting process.  This is a hypothetical patent application flow chart.  See my article on “Behind the First to File Rules“.  Also review my article regarding “Patent Application Elements“. Pre-Filing Outline Document invention in writing, signed and dated…

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Section 103 Obviousness Rejections

Introduction Continuing with my discussion yesterday regarding rejection of patent applications based upon the examiner’s assertion that the claimed development is obvious, I am exploring the USPTO updated guidance to examiners published in early 2018.  An invention can not be patented if the development would have been obvious to a person skilled in the art at…

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Clarifying What are Patent Ineligible Abstract Ideas

Introduction: Intertwined with the long ambiguity of the scope of patent eligible software has been the difficulty in defining what are patent ineligible “abstract ideas”.  Recall 35 U.S.C. Section 101 states that all things invented by man are patentable subject matter except laws of nature, natural phenomena or abstract ideas.  These three items are referred to below as…

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Review of CBM Procedure

Introduction I very recently wrote an article regarding the use of the Covered Business Method review procedure created under the AIA of 2012.  The Covered Business Method review procedure is a powerful tool that can be used to challenge an issued patent that pertains to a business method.  See Junk Patents and Covered Business Methods.  The…

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Expediting Patent Examination

Introduction I typically estimate that the patent examination requires 2 or 3 years from filing to allowance of a patent.  However the duration of patent prosecution is often longer for applications pertaining to business methods, e-commerce and document processing. There are procedures to expedite or accelerate patent examination. The USPTO provides two options intended to expedite…

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PATENTS FOR BUSINESS METHODS (REVISED)

Introduction Methods of conducting business can be patentable.  However, the USPTO inquiry expands beyond the questions of whether the method is new (Section 102) or whether the method is an obvious variation of prior art methods (Section 103).  Further, the pendency for examination of business method applications is the longest within the USPTO.  Also see…

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CHALLENGING JUNK PATENTS

Introduction: The USPTO is often criticized for allowing worthless or junk “developments” to be patented.  As a business, you may be threatened with a competitor asserting a newly issued patent.  The new patent may apply to your long standing device or business method.  You may think that either you must submit to the demand for licensing the right…

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