Posts Tagged: "artificial intelligence"

Singapore’s IP Office Launches World’s First Mobile App for Trademark Applications

On August 21, the Intellectual Property Office of Singapore (IPOS) announced the release of its official app for mobile devices, titled IPOS Go, to the Apple App and Google Play stores. Among the services offered through the app are trademark filing services, making this particular app the world’s first for enabling the filing of trademark registration documents from a mobile device. IPOS expects that the introduction of this mobile app will help facilitate a growing number of trademark applications; the agency notes that trademark applications in Singapore have increased by 30% over the past five years. As reported by ZDNet, IPOS took in 50,035 trademark applications and registered 37,030 trademarks during 2017. A little over 20% of both filed applications and trademark registrations that year belonged to domestic entities in Singapore. The top foreign filers of trademark applications into Singapore included Amazon Technologies and Apple.

Searching for Answers to the Standard Essential Patent Problem

Later this year (likely in October), the United Kingdom’s highest court will hear arguments on questions arising in two disputes concerning standard essential patents (SEPs). The UK Supreme Court has agreed to hear appeals in Unwired Planet International Ltd and another v Huawei Technologies (UK) Co Ltd and another UKSC 2018/0214 and the joined cases Huawei Technologies Co Ltd and another v Conversant Wireless Licensing SARL UKSC 2019/0041 and ZTE Corporation and another v Conversant Wireless Licensing SARL UKSC 2019/0042. The arguments are likely to focus on one question: can a national court impose a global license in SEP cases? The closely watched appeal will be the culmination of years of litigation between the parties. In the Unwired Planet case, Mr. Justice Birss of the High Court heard five trials on the validity and infringement/essentiality of Unwired Planet’s patents. In April 2017, he then gave a mammoth judgment determining what a fair, reasonable and non-discriminatory (FRAND) license would be, and setting royalty rates. Critically, he found that only a worldwide license would be FRAND in the circumstances of this case. The England and Wales Court of Appeal upheld this conclusion, in a judgment in October 2018. The Supreme Court will likely sit in a five-judge panel in a hearing that will last about two days and will be live streamed on its website (the date and panel details have not been confirmed yet). It will hand down judgment later this year or early in 2020. (Ironically, patent specialist Lord Kitchin is a member of the Supreme Court but will not be sitting in this case as it is his own judgment that is under appeal.) You might have thought that—after decades of legal debate and academic writing, dozens of judgments addressing questions such as what constitutes a FRAND license and what are reasonable royalties, and extensive discussions between technology companies—the questions around SEPs would be close to being resolved. But that is far from the case. The outcome of the UK Supreme Court hearing, for instance, will have an impact on negotiations between owners of SEP portfolios and implementers worldwide, at a time when standards are set to become critical to many more industries.

Update on 101 Rejections at the USPTO: Prospects for Computer-Related Applications Continue to Improve Post-Guidance

The Supreme Court’s 2014 decision in Alice v. CLS Bank made it significantly more difficult to obtain patents for some computer-related technologies. it is, at best, questionable whether court decisions since then have been coherent and consistent. Similarly, marked variation has been observed across art units and across post-Alice time periods as to how examiners are applying Section 101. However, the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office’s (USPTO’s) 2019 Patent Eligibility Guidance added some much-needed clarity and predictability as to how eligibility of computer-related patent applications is being assessed at the agency. Our previous research focused on the effect that Alice and Electric Power Group had on examination trends in computer-related art units. To investigate how the new 2019 USPTO eligibility guidance has affected those trends, we updated our analysis.

Artificial Intelligence Inventor Asks If ‘WHO’ Can Be an Inventor Is the Wrong Question?

Recently a group out of the University of Surrey provided a new challenge to the definition of inventor, asking “who what may be an inventor on a patent?” The group has created an artificial intelligence (AI) named DABUS. Using a first system of networks to generate new ideas, and second system of networks to determine consequences, DABUS invented a beverage container and a flashing device used for search and rescue that are the subjects of patent applications filed in the United States and Europe.

Other Barks & Bites, August 2: VirnetX Patent Claims Revived, AIA Trial Fees Increased, and CAFC Rules in Celgene that AIA Trials Do Not Violate the Fifth Amendment

This week in Other Barks & Bites: The Federal Circuit issues several precedential decisions, including one reviving the patent claims in VirnetX and another determining that America Invents Act (AIA) validity trials don’t violate the Fifth Amendment’s Takings Clause in Celgene. This week in Other Barks & Bites: The Federal Circuit issues several precedential decisions, including one reviving the patent claims in VirnetX and another determining that America Invents Act (AIA) validity trials don’t violate the Fifth Amendment’s Takings Clause in Celgene; the USPTO proposes fee increases to patent examination and AIA trials and issues a final rule on e-filing in trademark registrations; Katy Perry is ordered to pay $2.7 million for copyright infringement; free OTA TV service Locast is targeted in a copyright suit filed by Disney and other major broadcasters; Pfizer and Mylan consider creating a global giant in off-patent drugs; the University of California files patent suits against major retailers over LED light bulb technology; and patent applications listing artificial intelligence machine inventor are filed in patent offices across the world.

Mistakes to Avoid When Filing Computer-Implemented Invention Patents at the EPO

In the final installment of my interview with three examiners at the European Patent Office (EPO), we wrap up our conversation about their approaches to examining computer implemented inventions, particularly in the field of artificial intelligence (AI), and how the EPO system compares with the U.S. patent examination system.

Software May be Abstract, But a Computer-Implemented Invention Produces a Technical Effect

In Part II of my interview with three examiners at the European Patent Office (EPO), we continue the conversation about their advice, pet peeves, and approaches to examining computer implemented inventions, particularly in the field of artificial intelligence (AI), and how the EPO system compares with the U.S. patent examination system.

How to Help an EPO Examiner and Improve Your Odds of Patenting a Computer-Implemented Invention

I recently had the opportunity to speak on the record with three examiners at the European Patent Office (EPO) about their advice, pet peeves, and approaches to examining computer implemented inventions, particularly in the field of artificial intelligence (AI), and how the EPO compares with the U.S. patent examination system. It was a wide-ranging and thoroughly enjoyable conversation with three professionals who obviously know this area very well, and who were willing to provide keen insight into ways applicants can and should improve technical disclosures to maximize the likelihood of obtaining a patent.

This Week on Capitol Hill: Third Patent Eligibility Hearing, AI National Security Challenges, and NASA’s Science Mission

This week on Capitol Hill, the Senate IP Subcommittee will hold its third and final hearing on patent eligibility issues that currently exist in the U.S. patent system. Elsewhere in the Senate, hearings will focus on privacy issues posed by data brokers as well as Federal Communications Commission oversight. Hearings over at the House of Representatives will discuss topics including NASA’s science mission, sexual harassment issues within the scientific professions, and research leading towards increased use of renewable energy sources. The Information Technology and Innovation Foundation will also host an event to explore new tax models affecting U.S.-based Internet services companies.

INTA Annual Meeting Highlights: Gen Z, Fan Fiction, and AI

Much has been made in the last week or two of the International Trademark Association’s (INTA’s) study, Gen Z Insights: Brands and Counterfeit Products, which surveyed more than 4,500 respondents between the ages of 18 and 23 in 10 countries: Argentina, China, India, Indonesia, Italy, Japan, Mexico, Nigeria, Russia, and the United States. The study found that Gen Z’s identity is defined by three characteristics: individuality, morality and flexibility: 85% believe that brands should aim to do good in the world, and 81% feel that the brand name is not as important as how the product fits their needs. While 85% have heard of IP rights and 93% have a lot of respect for people’s ideas and creations, 79% said they have purchased counterfeit products in the past year. The two most commonly purchased counterfeit products are apparel and shoes and accessories. The three most credible sources for learning about counterfeiting are brands’ creators or employees, media personalities and social media influencers.

This Week in Washington: Security in 5G Networks, Setting Standards, for AI and Promoting Civil Liberties in CIA Data Collection

This week, both houses of Congress sit silent during scheduled work periods, although the House Infrastructure Subcommittee will host a hearing on rural broadband Internet access in Minnesota. Back in Washington, D.C., tech and innovation think tanks kick off the week with an event on bridging the STEM education gap hosted by the Consortium for Science, Policy and Outcomes. Later in the week, the American Enterprise Institute explores issues in promoting security in 5G networks, the Information Technology and Innovation Foundation meets at the NIST headquarters in Gaithersburg to discuss standards setting for artificial intelligence tech, and the Brookings Institution focuses on the CIA’s efforts to police online channels to identify threats while balancing those activities with Americans’ civil liberties.

Patent Trends Study Part Ten: Artificial Intelligence Industry

Artificial intelligence (AI) has become a hot topic in both the tech and political spheres. This technology holds huge widespread potential, and strategic use of AI may well be a source of commercial and/or political power. For example, potential uses of AI may range from facilitating targeted and efficient drug development to controlling traffic lights (and thus reducing pollution and commute times), to developing life-like online personas. With all of the media attention that AI is receiving and with its widespread potential uses, how is a company to decide how fervently to pursue patents in this area and to weight their patent portfolios across different types of AI innovations?

Patent Trends Study Part Five: Automotive Industry

It has been a wild decade for the automotive industry, with U.S. auto brands almost dying in the Great Recession. Federal government intervention rescued brands and attempted to turn them toward efficiency instead of profitable large SUVs. Although there has been a steep increase in patent filings in the automotive space, U.S. companies have a smaller proportion of them, indicating global forces are a major threat. This is especially acute in the area of electric propulsion, where our early patent lead has plateaued. Many of the car brands and battery innovators have been sold to Chinese interests who are moving quickly with government support to dominate the car industry, at least for electric vehicles (EVs). Our study not only identified a set of applications that pertained to this industry, but also—for each application in this set—we determined whether the application pertained to one or more of the categories shown in the topology below. If so, the application was appropriately tagged, such that it could be included in one or more category-specific data subsets for subsequent analysis.

Alice Five Years Later: Hope Wanes as 101 Legislative Discussions Dominated by Big Tech

On June 19, it will be five years since the United States Supreme Court issued a decision in Alice Corp. v. CLS Bank, 134 S.Ct. 2347 (2014), which significantly changed the way courts and patent examiners evaluated patent eligibility of computer implemented innovation in the United States. While the Supreme Court ostensibly extended the patent eligibility analysis applied in the life sciences context that had previously been adopted in Mayo Collaborative v. Prometheus Labs., 132 S.Ct. 1289 (2012), even a cursory review of allowance rates from the USPTO and invalidity rates in federal courts shows that Alice changed the prevailing analysis in profound ways. We will be commemorating this anniversary on June 24-25 in Washington, DC with a dedicated event examining the damage, discussing real solutions, and offering strategies for innovators who need protection in these uncertain times (see below for more detail). Almost immediately after Alice, patent examiners started to issue new subject-matter eligibility rejections for computer implemented innovations using the abstract idea exception to the statutory categories of patent eligibility. “The ubiquity of subject-matter eligibility rejections in office actions exploded, leading many to wonder whether software implemented inventions remained patentable at all,” explained Kate Gaudry and Samuel Hayim, who have done a series of articles on IPWatchdog detailing their statistical analysis. “This effect was largely centered in business method art units of [USPTO technology center] (TC) 3600. For example, the number of allowances issued from business-method art units dropped from 24% in the months before Alice was decided to about 3% in months after.” For months there has been growing hope that a legislative fix spearheaded by a few dedicated Members of Congress would provide a solution. But in recent weeks, that hope is waning as the uncomfortable reality that big tech is dominating the discussions has started to set in.

How the EPO and USPTO Guidance Will Help Shape the Examination of Artificial Intelligence Inventions

It is safe to say that Artificial intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning (ML) are hot topics and, as with any rapidly growing technological area on the industry side, there is also a rapidly growing number of patent applications being filed.In view of this, the European Patent Office (EPO) issued new guidance for examination for AI and ML patent applications in November 2018. Meanwhile, in January 2019, the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) also issued revised guidance directed to what constitutes patent eligible subject matter under 35 U.S.C. §101. Although the USPTO’s revised guidance is more generally directed to software applications, at least one of the accompanying hypothetical examples (Example 39) is directed to the AI and ML space. Therefore, while there may be lingering concerns that AI and ML inventions will face extra scrutiny toward patentability due to their software-centric nature, the extra attention that the EPO and USPTO are paying toward AI and ML will likely help swing the pendulum of patentable subject matter toward a place that is in harmony with the current state of technology. The below analysis reviews the recent developments by the EPO and the USPTO to provide specific guidance on the topic of AI and ML.