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Posts Tagged: "Chamberlain v. Techtronic"

Techtronic Dismisses Chamberlain Petition to SCOTUS as ‘Nothing Important’

On August 7, Techtronic Industries filed a brief in opposition to The Chamberlain Group’s petition to the U.S. Supreme Court asking for review of “whether the Federal Circuit improperly expanded § 101’s narrow implicit exceptions by failing to properly assess Chamberlain’s claims ‘as a whole.’” Techtronic’s brief asks the Court to deny the petition, and presents the following two questions in the case it is granted: “1) Whether the Federal Circuit, on the particular facts of this case, erred in analyzing the claims as a whole and 2) Whether Chamberlain forfeited and is estopped from making its current arguments about the scope and preemptive effect of its claims in view of its inconsistent arguments below.”

Amici Implore Supreme Court to Take Up Chamberlain Petition

Two amicus briefs have now been filed in The Chamberlain Group’s bid to the Supreme Court for review of “whether the Federal Circuit improperly expanded § 101’s narrow implicit exceptions by failing to properly assess Chamberlain’s claims ‘as a whole.’” Former Federal Circuit Chief Judge Randall Rader has submitted a joint brief with Chargepoint, Inc.—which recently lost its own plea to the High Court to fix Section 101 law—and High 5 Games submitted a separate brief. Both are backing the petition and urging the Court to resolve the uncertainty around U.S. patent eligibility law once and for all, and sooner rather than later.

It Is Time to Fix the Courts’ Section 101 Tests on ‘Directed to …’ and ‘Abstract Ideas’—Whether in Chamberlain or Beyond (Part II)

As we concluded in Part I of this article, the courts are being called upon in The Chamberlain Group v. Techtronic Industries, Inc to respond to an emergency situation in which they must stop the Federal Circuit’s “directed-to” version of the Mayo-Alice test from expanding into, and negating, claims in every subject imaginable. As Chamberlain urges, the patent statute, whether in Section 101 or beyond, does not limit the universe of eligible claims to those where a court can dissect its claim elements into old or “conventional” ones and those that represent the claim’s “patentable advance.” On that point, too, the Patent Act and the Supreme Court have been in unison: You can’t do that.

Chamberlain Petitions SCOTUS to Review CAFC’s ‘Refusal to Assess Claims as a Whole’ in Garage Door Opener Case

On May 15, the Chamberlain Group Inc. filed a petition for a writ of certiorari asking the U.S. Supreme Court to review the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit’s (CAFC) decision reversing a district court’s holding that Chamberlain’s claims covering a “moveable barrier operator” were patent-eligible under Section 101. If the Supreme Court grants review, it will consider whether the Federal Circuit “improperly expanded § 101’s narrow implicit exceptions by failing to properly assess Chamberlain’s claims ‘as a whole,’ where the claims recite an improvement to a machine and leave ample room for other inventors to apply any underlying abstract principles in different ways.”

The Search for the ‘Inventive Concept’ and Other Snipe Hunts

Everybody in the patent world is talking about the latest atrocity from the Federal Circuit known as the American Axle decision, but few actually appreciate the true level of absurdity. Yes, 35 U.S.C. § 101 swallowed §§ 112(a), 112(f), 102, and 103 in a single decision (a new feat of judicial acrobatics), and Judges Taranto and Dyk displayed their technical ignorance. For example, in citing the Flook decision Judges Dyk and Taranto assert that Flook’s mathematical formula (known to a million-plus engineers as the steepest-descent algorithm) is a “natural law.” American Axle, slip op. at p. 19. Seriously? Are Federal Circuit judges so technically ignorant that the entirety of the country is doomed to believe such an idiotic fantasy that a particular adaptive mathematical algorithm associated with no natural law must be a natural law? 

WIPO Report Validates Fears About U.S. Patent Decline

Each year the World Intellectual Property Organization releases a report titled World Intellectual Property Indicators. The latest edition of the report, the 2019 version, is a look back on the filing statistics for 2018. The report is eye-opening and should be mandatory reading for policy makers and legislators in the United States. For the first time since 2009, the United States saw a decline in the number of patent applications filed. This remarkable statistic comes at a time when patent applications are growing in number across the rest of the world. And let’s not forget that 2009 was a time of particular economic crisis both in the United States and around the world due to the global financial crisis and Wall Street meltdown brought on by the housing market collapse.  

It Is Time for Federal Circuit Judges of Good Conscience to Call Out Their Colleagues

Recently, IPWatchdog published an excellent article by Wen Xie outlining the legal inconsistencies of the Chamberlain v. Techtronic Industries opinion, penned by Judge Chen. Unfortunately, describing the latest inconsistencies in the garbage pile of contradictions that is the Federal Circuit’s Alice/Mayo doctrine provides no surprise to anyone. The Alice/Mayo decisions issued by the CAFC are self-contradictory and cannot be reconciled with the Constitution, 35 U.S.C. §§ 102, 103, and 112, and at least a dozen Supreme Court cases. Indeed, the only surprises from the Federal Circuit these days come in the form of the odd holding for patent eligibility. However, Wen Xie’s article did cause me to realize that I’d overlooked Judge Chen’s distortions of fact. “Distortions,” however, is too mild a term for the outrageous misrepresentations made in Chamberlain.

Examining Confusion Between the Chamberlain and Berkheimer Decisions at the Federal Circuit

If you’re reading this blog, then you likely are an avid follower of the Section 101 saga. The most recent episode in this saga, Chamberlain v. Techtronic at the Federal Circuit, is about so much more than a garage door operator being an abstract idea. It’s about the fact that we still have no clue what’s supposed to happen in the 2A and 2B steps of the judicially-created Alice/Mayo test. The Chamberlain panel applied the Alice/Mayo test completely backwards compared to what the Berkheimer panel said. First, the question of improvement was assessed in Chamberlain’s “Step One” (or 2A). Not only that, the panel then immediately went on to find that “(t)he specification admits that the act of transmitting data wirelessly is ‘well understood in the art,’ and no other changes to the generically claimed movable barrier operator are recited in the asserted claims or described in the specification.”