Cisco Systems, Inc., headquartered in San Jose, CA, is a developer and manufacturer of Internet networking technologies, typically for business and corporate solutions. Recently, Cisco has been getting involved with cloud-based applications and services for Internet connectivity. Corporate actions in past weeks, including their acquisition of Ubiquisys, a developer of small-cell technologies for intelligent 3G mobile network connections, is evidence of this new focus.
This week in IPWatchdog’s Companies We Follow series, we take a closer look at the Internet networking hardware developer’s recent innovations. Video conferencing has been a topic of interest for Cisco’s research and development teams, as two U.S. Patent & Trademark Office patent documents describe. One document, a patent application would protect a simpler system of establishing video conferencing connection. An US patent gives Cisco the right to protect a system of gauging member participation levels to make sure meeting members are paying attention.
Business marketing is a big topic in the digital world, and another Cisco patent application seeks to utilize a wide scope of user social interactions to build consumer profiles for smarter advertising. Other patent applications would protect systems of attaching metadata to media sessions for creating a diagnostic session log, and another protects methods of storing Bluetooth connections for quicker device authentication in call center systems.
Research In Motion Limited of Waterloo in Canada’s Ontario province has been a beleaguered brand in recent years. RIM’s flagship product, the BlackBerry, was a dominant mobile phone early in the 2000s, but advances to Apple’s iPhone and Google’s Android system earned both of those manufacturers a greater share of the market. Recently, RIM has been redeveloping its line of products and seeking new markets, especially with the company’s recent unveiling of the Q5, a low-cost device running the BlackBerry 10 operating system that will be available in Latin America, Asia and other emerging markets.
As a developer of mobile communication technologies, RIM is a common name each week at the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office. IPWatchdog is giving the creator of the BlackBerry a close look this week, covering some of the most interesting USPTO patent applications and patent awards published this month for the company.
Research In Motion’s development of better mobile devices is on display in a number of intriguing documents. One application released recently outlines RIM’s development of a mobile device with a flexible display that can be bent up to 180 degrees. Another patent application discusses new tunable capacitors using microwaves for better radio impedance matching. An official patent awarded to the company this week protects an accelerometer component that improves list scrolling within applications.
RIM is also focused on computer systems design providing user feedback. Two applications that give us a closer look at this research and development involve a custom system of building user word lists for predictive text models, as well as location-specific search engines parameters that a user can set manually.
Johnson & Johnson is a very respected brand in the consumer medical devices and pharmaceutical goods industries. Well known for its highly recognizable personal care products, including Band-Aids, Neutrogena and Tylenol, Johnson & Johnson is also a major player in other healthcare fields. For example, a recent piece from the investment research online publication Seeking Alpha discussed the company’s attempts to build the world’s first artificial, fully-functioning pancreas.
As a result of all this research and development, Johnson & Johnson will often file patent applications with the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office. This week, IPWatchdog wants to take a look at the consumer and pharmaceutical health conglomerate to see what advances in personal medical care we can expect in the coming years. Perhaps the most exciting thing in our perusal of recent patents and patent applications is a patent just issued on certain topical anti-cancer compositions.
Many patent applications published also pertain to Johnson & Johnson’s extensive lineup of medical cosmetic products. One application would protect a dermabrasion kit with a detachable head for sensitive skin, and another was filed to protect a system of manufacturing bacteria-resistant contact lenses.
Johnson & Johnson is also focused on protecting medical devices designed by the company. Two other recent patent applications that we feature here are for punctal plugs (shown above right) and eye misting devices that can deliver medication directly to the body through the incredibly permeable membranes within the eye.
One month after our last check into Oracle Corporation, IPWatchdog is back to see how the database management system developer has been faring at the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office. Along with database management, the technology developer is also involved with the innovation of enterprise resource planning, supply chain management and customer relationship software.
Many of the recent patent applications filed by Oracle and published by the USPTO showcase the company’s focus on providing software business solutions. These patent applications seek protections for improvements to enterprise software, including voice control and more efficient upgrades for enterprise planning and management software. Another application lays out a system of smart allocation for resources within a supply chain.
Oracle is also involved with efficiency upgrades to enterprise software, especially those that would benefit small businesses. Another patent application filed by Oracle would improve the reaction time for queries registered within a Model-View-Controller online database application. An official patent awarded to Oracle this month provides a better deployment model for small firms who manufacture and sell software applications.
International Business Machines Corporation of Armonk, NY, is a technology development and consultant agency that provides information technology for business solutions. IBM is a huge player in the world of technology research and development, and the company currently has the distinction of being awarded the most U.S. patents every year for the past 20 years, according to business publication Bloomberg. These factors make IBM a major focus for IPWatchdog, as we continue our regular series of following U.S. Patent & Trademark Office publications regarding American technology firms. See Companies We Follow.
Within the past month, many IBM patent applications published by the USPTO show a desire to improve multimedia experiences on many computer devices. Patent applications filed by IBM include systems for improving secure access of licensed content and another providing a more viewer-responsive experience for watching live events.
IBM is still heavily involved with the development of business applications for computer systems. To that end, the company has filed patent applications for a system of capturing the workflow process of an employee accessing project software. Another application creates a visualization of temporal event data to aid in medical diagnostic processes. One official patent awarded to IBM protects a system of providing feedback to publishers from their subscribers.
Microsoft Corporation, headquartered in Redmond, WA, is an American leader in developing and manufacturing computer services products, including Microsoft Office document software suites and Microsoft Windows operating systems. As a leader in the computer services market, Microsoft is a regular each week at the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office. This week, we return to see what the Washington State-based technology juggernaut has been up to lately.
As always, many patent applications show Microsoft’s focus on improving their software for business applications. Different Microsoft patent applications this week provide for systems of sharing meeting notes within office software, mapping identities to keep important business documents secure as well as using serious games to identify talent within an organization.
Other USPTO documents of note show that the computer developer is also trying to reach beyond this market. Another patent application would protect a system of creating digital memorabilia for events. Also, one patent awarded to Microsoft protects a system of identifying different users on a touchscreen.
Apple Inc. of Cupertino, CA, is back in focus this week at IPWatchdog as we return to our regular coverage of technology companies that have patent documents regularly published by the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office after our Earth Day 2013 series. As usual, Apple has filed many applications and received patents recently from the USPTO that show what the company sees for the future of its iPhone, iPad and other digital device products.
This month, the USPTO has published many Apple patent applications that are specifically for improvements to the technology developer’s mobile devices. These include a more secure system of connecting an iPhone to a computer and two new applications, one for easily creating social groups among acquaintances and another for students who wish to enroll in online courses. Apple also wants to protect a system of pre-processing images to create and store thumbnails that are accessed by image applications.
One patent recently received by Apple grants them the legal right to protect a system of generating security codes for more security in connections between two or more devices.
Collecting the information necessary to prepare a patent application covering a computer related invention can be quite challenging. Typically, most computer related inventions today relate at least in some way to software, which is at the core of the challenge. This software challenge stems from the fact that the software code is not protected by patent law, but rather how the software operates is protected. This means that the description needs to be one that can be replicated by others regardless of how they choose to write code to accomplish the necessary tasks.
A patent does not need to be a blueprint, but it needs to direct. For example, you do not need to provide the code for the scripts, although that is certainly one way to make sure it is described adequately, and perhaps something you may want to consider if you have a working prototype that you want to protect (more on this later).
Generally speaking, the goal is to provide enough description so that someone who is “skilled in the art,” which is a legal term that refers to those who would be expected to possess the knowledge and understanding appropriate to comprehend the invention, can make and use the invention after reading the patent application. In order to satisfy the patent law description requirements the explanation of the software in a patent application must give the programmer enough information to be able to sit down and know how to write the code having only read the description contained in the patent application.
I wonder what it is about the dawning of Spring that gets people in the mood to clean house. Is it the smell of the blooming flowers that gets a person to finally throw out that old broken chair that’s been sitting in the corner of the garage forever because it’s missing one leg? Or maybe it’s a rainy Saturday that gets people’s cleaning juices flowing.
Whatever the motivation is, one thing is for sure–having the proper tools to make one’s cleaning efforts worthwhile is essential. Perhaps these four patents and one patent application will do the trick.
In order to clean, it is imperative that you have an effective cleaning tool that will get the job done, and inventor Johann Zita believes that a bendable cleaning device and system is just the ticket to get rid of all that dust that seems to pile up on top of our kitchen cabinets and bookcases. Sure, there are all kinds of dusters currently on the market that will do a decent job of getting the dust off of those fragile pieces of crystal that you’ve been keeping on display on a shelf in the living room. But what about the top of the refrigerator (which everyone seems to forget about) or the top of the curio that everyone walks by and barely touches? Those items require something a bit stiffer and more adjustable than your typical feather duster. That’s where Zita’s cleaning device and system comes in. The invention is a duster that comes with a handle and a bendable duster portion that will make reaching those hard-to-reach spots more manageable. The user can shape the duster portion of the unit to whatever angle they so desire, and when the cleaning is done, the duster can be put back into its original position with ease. So say bye-bye to those dust bunnies that have been living on top of your refrigerator!
Electronic device developer and manufacturer Apple Inc. has recorded another big week with the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office. On Tuesday, the California corporation was issued 36 patents, and the USPTO published another 32 patent applications on Thursday. Many of these prospective patents focus on better responses to user interactions, including new methods of music library visualizations and smarter microphone response to ambient sound. One of the patents issued to Apple protects a fiber optic cable connection that is self-cleaning.
Optical signals between electronic devices can be transmitted through fiber optic cables connecting the two devices. For example, a television can play DVDs if a DVD player has been connected to the television through a cable plugged into the proper jack input. With time, however, the plug can degrade in quality through scratches or from the buildup of dirt and other organic debris, affecting the signal transmitted through the cable.
The patent awarded this Tuesday to Apple protects a new design for a fiber optic cable connection that is not only cleanable but also self-cleaning. The ejector of this new plug connector pops the plug out of the jack with enough force that any debris remaining in the connector is also expelled. The new configuration is also designed to reduce scratching on the optical element of the cable connection, protecting the signal quality:
One year ago, the USPTO Museum packed away 30 man-sized, glowing iPhones. It was the last day of an exhibit commemorating the life and inventions of Steve Jobs, and the oversized mock-smartphones were displaying trademarks and patents in his name. But is it as easy to view those patents on your ordinary, pocket-sized iPhone? Or file a patent application from an iPad?
The USPTO is one of many federal agencies struggling to comply with the mandates of the White House Digital Government Strategy for 2013 – namely, that digital information and services must be available “anywhere, anytime, on any device”. Meeting the government standard will entail not just polishing USPTO.gov for use on smartphones and tablets, but also a substantial overhaul of the way the agency exposes data to patent practitioners and the public.
The last day of February was a big one for Apple at the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office, as the USPTO published 35 patent applications filed by the electronics manufacturer on Thursday. Apple has been preoccupied with the world of handheld electronic devices for a long time now, and they’re still devising improvements to battery systems and other utility features. This week, we also see some of Apple’s planned improvements to one of the most basic forms of computer software: the spreadsheet program.
The ability to keep an electronic tablet device nearby so that a user can easily interact with it is an attractive feature to device consumers. Many manufacturers have attempted creating tablet device stands in the past, but Apple believes that they’ve fallen short until now. This ambitious stand design aims to help tablet owners position their device to improve their ability to multitask.
This stand, which Apple is hoping to protect, includes a magnetic element that fits within a stand shaped to fit the tablet device. The stand’s exterior provides a friction force to hold the tablet steady, and the magnetic element keeps the device in place with the aid of a metallic shunt that focuses the magnetic force. Descriptions of the invention’s embodiments focus on vehicle mounts, but schematic images attached to the patent document suggest a much wider range of applications.
How to Write a Patent Application is a must own for patent attorneys, patent agents and law students alike. A crucial hands-on resource that walks you through every aspect of preparing and filing a patent application, from working with an inventor to patent searches, preparing the patent application, drafting claims and more. The treatise is continuously updated to address relevant Federal Circuit and Supreme Court decision impacting patent drafting.
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