March 2009

Leahy, Specter and Feinstein Reach Compromise on Patent Reform

Submitted by patentadmin on Tue, 03/31/2009 - 22:34

By Alex Poltorak (March 31, 2009)

Today the Senate Judiciary Committee held an executive session on the S.515 bill a.k.a. The Patent Reform Act of 2009. The Senators on both side of the aisle who were most active in this legislative initiative, Pat Leahy (D-VT), Arlen Specter (R-PA), and Dianne Feinstein (D-CA), agreed today on a compromise on most contentious feature of the bill. The compromise affects the following provisions of the bill:

Microsoft, TomTom settle patent lawsuit over GPS technology

Submitted by patentadmin on Tue, 03/31/2009 - 13:48

(March 30, 2009) Microsoft and TomTom, the Amsterdam-based GPS manufacturer, have settled a patent infringement lawsuit concerning 8 Microsoft patents that allow global positioning systems (GPS) to connect to the Internet, run multiple applications and provide a smooth navigation experience.

Patent Enforcement: To Sue or Not to Sue?

Click on the links below to view or download a PDF copy of "Patent Enforcement: To Sue or Not to Sue?" and "Putting the Infringer on Notice" - a 2-part series of articles by Alexander Poltorak, originally published in Inventors Digest, November/December 2000 and January/February 2001.

Part One of Two: To Sue or Not to Sue? (November/December 2000)

Part Two of Two: Putting the Infringer on Notice (January/February 2001)

Is It Is Or Is It Ain't Infringement

Submitted by patentadmin on Mon, 03/23/2009 - 16:01

A previous blog post addressed infringement of method claims, specifically the question whether all the steps must be performed by a single party (the “slimeball”) for infringement to occur (the reader may relax, this is not a quiz). The C.A.F.C. has now taken up the question whether the foreign use of a patented process is an infringement. Cardiac Pacemakers Inc. et al. v. St. Jude Medical Inc. et al.

How Does Your Garden Grow – The Benefits Of Portfolio Management

Submitted by patentadmin on Tue, 03/17/2009 - 16:07

A patent portfolio is like a garden – if it is to produce a bountiful crop, the plants must be carefully selected, planted and cultivated. The gardener must periodically till the garden to remove weeds which would otherwise take nutrients from more desirable plants. Finally, the successful gardener protects his crops from predatory animals and insect pests, and sells those crops which no longer meet his tastes.

Step By Step – It’s All About Control

Submitted by patentadmin on Mon, 03/16/2009 - 14:42

A “process” or “method” patent is one directed (not surprisingly) to a process or method for doing something. The claims of such a patent set forth a number (a “plurality” in lawyerspeak) of steps. Infringement of a process or method occurs when a single party (known as an infringer or “slimeball”), without permission, performs all of the steps of at least one of the claims of the patent. The question remains, however, whether the patent is infringed when some of the steps are performed by one party and the remaining steps are performed by another party.

Patent Reform Act of 2009

Submitted by Alex Poltorak on Tue, 03/10/2009 - 12:49

By Alex Poltorak

Last Tuesday, March 3, 2009, Senators Patrick Leahy (D-Vermont) and Orrin Hatch (R-Utah), and Representatives John Conyers (D-Michigan) and Lamar Smith (R-Texas) have introduced to the Senate (S. 515) and the House (H.R. 1260) almost identical bills aimed at reforming our patent system. These bills, collectively referred to as the Patent Reform Act of 2009, as expected, are very similar to S. 1145 and H.R. 1908 of the Patent Reform Act of 2007 that failed in the last Congress.

Patent Reform Threatens to Weaken Patent Protection and Undermine U.S. Technological Competitiveness

Suffern, NY - March 4, 2009 - General Patent Corporation (GPC), a leading patent licensing and enforcement company providing assistance to small inventors and entrepreneurs throughout the United States, announced its disappointment with the latest Congressional initiatives to reform America's patent laws. With the nation expecting more from the new Congress and the newly-elected Obama administration, it was hoped that the latest initiatives would have strengthened the nation's commitment to sustain America's traditional leadership in technology innovation.

Psion battles Intel, Dell over "Netbook" trademark

Submitted by patentadmin on Tue, 03/03/2009 - 21:59

Intel and Dell are in a trademark battle with Psion over Psion's trademark on the term "netbook," which Psion trademarked for use with a line of notebook computers that were last sold in 2003. Intel and Dell argue that Psion has lost its trademark through years of disuse and that in the interim, the public has adopted the term "netbook" as a generic term to describe "extensions of the notebook category, smaller computers purpose-built for mobile Internet access."

Guitar-maker Gibson loses Guitar Hero lawsuit

Submitted by patentadmin on Tue, 03/03/2009 - 21:16

The US District Court for the Central District of California has thrown out Gibson's lawsuit against Activision Blizzard (ActiBlizz), the maker of Guitar Hero.

Gibson filed its lawsuit in March 2008, alleging that Activision infringes Gibson's patent for devices with which a "musician can simulate participation in a concert by playing a musical instrument and wearing a head-mounted 3D display that includes stereo speakers."