Posts Tagged: "innovation"

What Should be Patentable? – A Proposal for Determining the Existence of Statutory Subject Matter Under 35 U.S.C. Section 101

The recent Supreme Court decision in the Myriad case, like past decisions, did not announce a clear rule that can be extrapolated from the decision and applied in other technology areas. Consequently, the determination of what subject matter is patent-eligible continues to be unclear. Patent law specifically identifies four broad categories of subject matter—process, machine, manufacture, or composition of matter—that are patent-eligible.

Opinion: Regrettable White House Intervention on Patent Trolls

What’s regrettable is that the White House didn’t wait for such empirical data on patent litigation and instead rehashed the findings of discredited studies of PAE-related lawsuits and their purported economic consequences. Specifically, I mean the infamous $29 billion victims are said to have paid to patent trolls in 2011, a number that has echoed around the Internet and made it into congressional debate despite its dubious origins. The number was produced by a study that failed to adequately define just what a troll is – even universities and many manufacturers were included – and then harvested its data not from a reputable polling or academic institution but from a company that has a dog in the patent fight and profits from fueling fears about infringement lawsuits.

Samsung Seeks Patents on Sharing User Emotion on a Social Network, Fragrant Mobile Phone

This week in IPWatchdog’s Companies We Follow, our series returns to focus once again on Samsung and its recent appearances at the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office. As has often been the case recently, many of the more intriguing patents and patent applications from Samsung deal with electronic device development. One patent document protects a better system of constructing biochips to monitor drug trials. An application filed by Samsung describes a devised method of allowing mobile phones to give off fragrance in response to user interaction. Upgrades to electro-wetting displays, which use water and oil to affect light displays, are featured in a second patent application.

Google Patents Disclose Advances for Google Maps

A number of interesting patent applications deal with Google’s efforts to improve online mapping applications. One such application would protect a system of downloading map tiles for offline routing. An issued patent assigned to Google protects a system of depicting multi-level buildings three-dimensionally so that browsers can view flooring plans. Other USPTO activity showcases Google’s focus on creating better media systems for mobile devices. One patent application would protect a system of synchronizing magazine content on apps for better layout among different devices. Another patent application allows users to selectively view images to conserve data usage. Finally, we look at a patent application filed to protect a system of ranking news articles based on the source publication’s quality.

Sony Patents Cloud Based Personal Internet Library

As a major developer of electronics, Sony Corporation often files patent applications and is awarded patents from the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office. This week at IPWatchdog’s series Companies We Follow, we take a closer look at some interesting patent documents assigned to Sony which the USPTO has released this month.

A few of the patent applications we profile here offer better methods of providing professional software services to electronic device users. One patent application improves the ability for amateur videographers to render 3D graphics while editing video. Another application would protect a new system of user camera settings that analyzes prior photos to determine user preferences for lighting and more.

Other applications we feature here would protect some very interesting improvements to electronic devices. For example, one application we look at would protect a remote control that can also help a user interact with their home’s telephone system. One final patent application we feature makes it easier for smart phone users to take pictures without their hands getting in the way of the display screen. We also look at one patent that allows users to build personal libraries of DRM-protected digital content that are accessible across multiple devices.

Siemens AG Diverse Innovation: Waste Water Treatment, Medical Images and Wind Turbines

As a multinational corporation, Siemens AG is a frequent applicant at the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office. This week’s Companies We Follow series takes a look at Siemens’ recent applications and patent awards in the fields of consumer and medical electronics. One application we feature involves a safer system of extinguishing fires within a machine dryer. Another application describes a home heat pump that would conserve thermal energy from appliance wastewater. Siemens’ medical subsidiary, Siemens Medical Solutions, has also been awarded a USPTO patent to protect a system of fixing misalignments in angiograms.

Other documents we look at feature improvements to electrical systems. Another application improves smart metering systems that have resulted in improper appliance functioning for dishwashers and washing machines. Lastly, we look at a Siemens patent that improves systems of protecting wind turbine components from lightning strikes.

Patent Assertion and US Innovation

Obama’s action plan was heavily influenced by a report, “Patent Assertion and U.S. Innovation,” which was released by the President’s Council of Economic Advisers, the National Economic Council, and the Office of Science & Technology Policy. The full text of the report can be read here. It is surprising that a report that was prepared by such an august and high-level set of entities could be so blatantly biased and one-sided. The body of the report slams PAEs and points to everything that’s bad about them. It creates an artificial distinction by referring to “good” patent middlemen as “patent intermediaries,” although there is no indication in the report of what are the characteristics of a good “patent intermediary” versus an evil PAE.

Microsoft to Patent a New Kind of DVR

As a constant developer of new technologies, Microsoft is seen often as an assignee on a great many U.S. Patent & Trademark Office patents and applications every week. This week on Companies We Follow, IPWatchdog is taking a look at this corporation’s more intriguing patents as of late, including many of those that will affect consumer media use.

A few of the patent applications profiled here detail specific improvements to consumer entertainment, especially where movies are concerned. One application would protect a system of rendering video elements as separate from browser elements for easier user customization. Another application describes a more intuitive system of digital recording for live events. A third application in this area improves movie recommendation systems by taking contextual factors into account.

Marketing and advertising interests for businesses are also showcased in a few official documents. One patent we’re including here protects a method of creating an individual consumer profile based on web events, like visiting a webpage. Microsoft has also filed a patent application for a system of monetizing video recommendation portals for business advertising.

Apple Seeks Patent on Gaze Detection Capabilities

This week, we’re featuring a number of interesting new patents and published applications from the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office that have been assigned to Apple. A few of the applications we’ve chosen to profile include more efficient systems of detecting user inputs. One application describes a system allowing devices to enter a low-power mode based on user gaze detection, conserving battery power. Another application would protect a system for better facial recognition during photo processing of image files.

Other documents assigned to Apple showcase the corporation’s focus on aiding user communication and providing a more user-intuitive device experience. One application featured here was filed to protect a system of analyzing a user’s media preferences for gaming environments, while another improves a user’s ability to share a pinned location on a map with others.

An patent awarded to Apple this week protects a richer system for accessibility software, allowing users to enhance their reading experience rather than rely on continuous audio playback.

Boeing Patent Application to Help Detect Infectious Disease

The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office is often publishing applications and awarding patents to Boeing for their technological developments for aircraft. This week on IPWatchdog’s Companies We Follow series, we take a look at some of Boeing’s most intriguing recent patents and applications. Two patent applications would protect safer on-board plane mechanisms for jam-proof mechanical wing assemblies and leak-proof cryogenic fuel tanks.

Other applications showcase Boeing’s focus on passenger safety. One application released recently describes Boeing’s development of an air filtering system that is responsive to the presence of airborne contagions. Another application describes a sensor system that can provide accurate readings of runway conditions, scanning for potholes or other surface degradation.

One patent awarded to Boeing, and featured here, protects a scanning system, likely for military purposes, which can provide more accurate detection of an object of interest within a geographic area.

GE Patents New Tower Design for Wind Turbines

The company’s robust research and development is often the subject of patents and patent applications published by the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office. This week, we profile some of General Electric’s most intriguing patent applications, especially those that pertain to smarter electrical and fuel systems.

One application describes a system of using devices to communicate fluctuating electricity costs in the case of a smart electrical grid. Another application would protect a system of monitoring travel conditions that affect fuel efficiency on trains. A third application we cover here describes improvements to wet gas compressors to reduce erosion within the compressor.

Energy generation and energy efficient systems are another major focus for GE. An official patent awarded recently to the company protects a new tower base design for wind turbines that are much easier to transport for installation. A final patent application covered here would offer General Electric the right to protect a system of separating carbon byproducts from gas streams within a carbon fuel system.

Google Seeks Patent on Music Libraries and Rating Playlists

As the developer of the Android mobile device software, Google is heavily involved with mobile device and digital media systems development. Two recent patent applications filed by Google would protect different innovations for Internet audio systems, including a user-responsive start page for a music library and a system of allowing multiple users to rate tracks on a playlist to adjust playback. Google is also focused on improving online search methods, as is evidenced by another patent application for a system of searching social media pages for individuals or groups. And another final patent application would protect a more secure system of offering digital media excerpts to potential customers which would prevent stealing.

Cisco Seeks a Patent For Advertisement Campaign System

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.

RIM Tries to Patent Flexible Display for Handheld Devices

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 Patents Topical Anti-Cancer Compositions

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. Many patent applications published by the USPTO 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. Two other recent patent applications that we feature here are for punctal plugs and eye misting devices that can deliver medication directly to the body through the incredibly permeable membranes within the eye.