Future Trends on the Doctrine of Equivalents?

Claims of infringement under the doctrine of equivalents routinely accompany literal infringement claims in patent infringement litigation.  Likewise, patent prosecutors typically try to avoid narrowing the scope of equivalents during prosecution of a patent application.  But, a pair of recent decisions from the Federal Circuit may keep some wondering why all of the fuss. Under … Continue reading Future Trends on the Doctrine of Equivalents?

A Good Reminder that Electrical Claims and Specifications Should Focus on the How, not Just the What

In today’s post-Alice landscape, patent practitioners have developed a gut-feeling about patent eligibility that helps them in various aspects of daily life: advising clients regarding asserted patents, developing office action responses, probing questions in invention disclosure meetings, and drafting effective patent applications, to name a few. If an inventor came to me and said their … Continue reading A Good Reminder that Electrical Claims and Specifications Should Focus on the How, not Just the What

Ex Parte Smith – The Name of the Game is the Claim (and the Specification)

As a follow-up to the post on the release of the 2019 Revised Patent Subject Matter Eligibility Guidance on January 7, 2019, (“Revised Guidance”), the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (“PTAB”) recently decided Ex Parte Smith Appeal No. 2018-000064 on February 1, 2019, in view of the Revised Guidance. The PTAB also designated the decision … Continue reading Ex Parte Smith – The Name of the Game is the Claim (and the Specification)

Even Konami Code Couldn’t Rescue Its Slot-machine Game-related Patents from being Invalidated under Alice

If you’re a child of the 80’s, the name Konami likely takes you back to sitting in front of a tube TV playing some Konami-created game on your Nintendo Entertainment System. For me, my two favorite Konami games were undoubtedly Contra and Gradius. Then, there was the “Konami code” (↑↑↓↓←→←→BA) entered quickly at the beginning … Continue reading Even Konami Code Couldn’t Rescue Its Slot-machine Game-related Patents from being Invalidated under Alice

Walker Process Antitrust Case: The Ball is in Whose Court?

In a recent game of jurisdictional tennis, the Fifth Circuit returned a case involving a Walker Process claim, sending it back to the Federal Circuit. Xitronix Corp. v. KLA-Tencor Corp., No. 18-50114 (Feb. 15, 2019). In Xitronix, the plaintiff alleged that the defendant was enforcing a fraudulently obtained patent for anti-competitive behavior in a violation … Continue reading Walker Process Antitrust Case: The Ball is in Whose Court?

USPTO Issues New Guidance on Subject Matter Eligibility

Previously featured on Michael Best’s Software and Section 101 blog on January 29, 2019, Michael Best IP attorney Greg Helding wrote: In 2014, the Supreme Court’s Alice took computer-implemented inventions down the rabbit hole. Since then, lower courts, the USPTO, practitioners, and applicants all have struggled to come to consensus on what constitutes an abstract idea, and … Continue reading USPTO Issues New Guidance on Subject Matter Eligibility

Eyes on Alice: Federal Circuit Concludes that Factual Allegations in Complaint Preclude Dismissal on Patent Eligibility Grounds

Previously featured on Michael Best’s Federal Circuit Weekly blog in February of 2018, Michael Best IP attorney Ken Albridge wrote: On February 14, 2018, the Federal Circuit issued a precedential decision providing important guidance regarding the circumstances under which dismissal on patent eligibility grounds is appropriate at the pleadings stage. In Aatrix Software, Inc. v. Green … Continue reading Eyes on Alice: Federal Circuit Concludes that Factual Allegations in Complaint Preclude Dismissal on Patent Eligibility Grounds

Federal Circuit and USPTO Turn Corner on Software Patent Eligibility

Previously featured on Michael Best’s Software and Section 101 blog in June of 2016, Michael Best IP attorney Greg Helding wrote: In May 2016, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit decided Enfish, LLC v. Microsoft Corp and TLI Communications LLC v. A.V. Automotive. These decisions, along with related guidance from the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO), may … Continue reading Federal Circuit and USPTO Turn Corner on Software Patent Eligibility