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Posts Tagged: "invention disclosures"

NASA Licenses Patent Portfolio to Achieve Widest Possible Distribution of Technology

NASA will enter into a range of different patent license agreements from no-cost evaluation licenses up to exclusive license. The agency’s goal in licensing technologies is to reach the widest distribution possible for the commercialized technology. To some, it may seem unusual that exclusive licenses would be part of NASA’s licensing options if the goal was truly the widest distribution possible. “We’ll only grant an exclusive license if we believe that exclusivity leads to the widest distribution,” Lockney said, noting that there were a couple of examples where such a situation could play out. An exclusive license for the broadest possible distribution could make sense if the technology was being commercialized in a medical device and a single multinational company offers an incredibly broad distribution model; such was the case with a flexible insulating plastic material for use with pacemaker wires recently licensed by NASA with Medtronic. In other situations where multiple companies occupy the same market, NASA might grant an exclusive license to one company if it’s determined that, without the exclusivity, none of the firms could invest adequately in commercializing the technology.

Which Invalidity Avenue to Take: Inter Partes Review Verses Post-Grant Review

The United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) provides invalidity tools via inter partes review (IPR) and post-grant review (PGR), but which route is better? …  PGRs are estimated to cost more because of their broader discovery rules.  If cost is a major factor, IPRs are a less-expensive option due to restricted allowance of discovery, the most expensive aspect of patent litigation… If the invalidating arguments or art are not strong, an IPR may be a better option due to its lower threshold for institution.  The same prior art arguments that failed in a petition for a PGR may have succeeded in an IPR petition due to the lower standard.

The America Invents Act – Panacea or Just Pain for the PTO?

Many people situated variously within and outside of the patent system of the United States urged the adoption of first-to-file. There are, however, many questions about the scope and possible impact of the AIA. Exactly how it will all play out remains to be seen. A significant question is what will be the likely impact of the AIA upon the operations of the USPTO, an organization that has been so greatly over-burdened in recent times. Anyone interested in reading this is likely old enough to have heard the old saying “Be careful what you wish for – you may get it.” Now we have it.

Prior Art Under America Invents: The USPTO Explains First to File

If (B) gives a blanket exclusion to subject matter, which cannot be used as prior art after a disclosure by an inventor, that would lead to nearly ridiculous results. Imagine for example that an inventor discloses a specific embodiment of a coffee cup and then subsequently another who did not derive independently comes up with and discloses a coffee cup with a lid. If (B) does more than relate to a personal grace-period the subsequent disclosure could not be used against the first to publish inventor as prior art because it relates to the same “subject matter.” That would mean that the inventor could incorporate the cup and the lid into his/her patent application and obtain claims. You might be tempted to say that is impossible, but if the cup with the lid is not prior art then under what rationale could an examiner issue a good rejection? This would lead to results that turn the patent system upside down, and was clear evidence to me that those arguing that 102(b)(1)(B) excluded out subsequent independently disclosed inventions was fanciful at best.

AUTM Survey: University Licensing Strong Despite Economy

During fiscal year 2009, 596 new companies were formed as a result of university research, which is one more than the 595 formed in 2008 and 41 more than the 555 formed in 2007. The increase, while modest, does come despite a downturn in the U.S. and global economy, proving that even during a down economy good technology and innovation can and does create jobs. The AUTM survey also shows that invention disclosures continue to rise, patent applications are up, and during fiscal year 2009 there was a surprisingly high increase in foreign filings over fiscal year 2008.