Patent Application Drafting: Using the Specification for more than the ordinary plain meaning
As a general rule the ordinary plain meaning of the term as would be understood by someone of skill in the relevant technology area or science will be used. That may or may not be bad, and it may or may not be what you intended… When I teach this topic the example I tend to use relates to “standard room temperature.” If you have invented a process that needs to be carried out at 68 degrees F you might say that the process can or should be carried out at standard room temperature, for example. In the U.S. standard room temperature is generally referred to as 20 degrees C, which is 68 degrees F. But in some parts of the world what qualifies as standard room temperature is a bit warmer, sometimes up to 25 degrees C. So this illustration is particularly useful for several reasons. When you say standard room temperature did you even know that it has an accepted meaning in the scientific community? Were you aware that the meaning could vary depending upon whether the person reading the disclosure is in the United States or some other part of the world? This is where defining what you mean could be particularly important.