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The information on Groklaw is not intended to constitute legal advice. While Mark is a lawyer and he has asked other lawyers and law students to contribute articles, all of these articles are offered to help educate, not to provide specific legal advice. They are not your lawyers.

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Do they want to hear this? | 179 comments | Create New Account
Comments belong to whoever posts them. Please notify us of inappropriate comments.
My only concern: Software IS Abstract
Authored by: PolR on Friday, March 15 2013 @ 02:11 PM EDT
This is because software patents are seldom directed to the software itself.
they are directed to an assembly of hardware, software, data and other
miscellaneous elements.

This approach aims to determine how to sort out what is a patent-eligible
eligible invention from what isn't when confronted with a claim like this. I
think this approach will block claims on the software itself because then the
referent is not claimed.

[ Reply to This | Parent | # ]

My only concern: Software IS Abstract
Authored by: stegu on Friday, March 15 2013 @ 02:19 PM EDT
> at a quick perusal it doesn't seem to touch on that point

Your perusal was too quick. Not only does it touch on that point, it digs deep
into it and tries to get all the way to the bottom. Read it again.

The fact that you missed it is valid criticism, though. It is difficult to set a
fundamental misunderstanding straight without lecturing, and people who don't
want to spend time with a text (which nowadays seems to include pretty much
everybody) will misunderstand this text. It was written for people who really
want to learn, and that might or might not be a wise choice. I don't know.
Getting into detail is always a double-edged sword.

If a child asks why the sky is blue, it is important that you phrase the
response in a way that is understandable to the child, not point to Lord
Rayleigh's original article from 1871 [1] and say "this is why, read for
yourself".

On the other hand, if one of my undergrad students would ask that same question,
I would point to the original article. (I have done that more than once, and it
worked just fine.)

[1] Lord Rayleigh a. k. a. John Strutt (1871) "On the light from the sky,
its polarization and colour," Philosophical Magazine, series 4, vol.41,
pages 107-120, 274-279.

[ Reply to This | Parent | # ]

My only concern: Software IS Abstract
Authored by: PolR on Friday, March 15 2013 @ 02:21 PM EDT
Perhaps the last paragraph of section B.1 in the supplement is what you are looking for.
The patent eligibility of a computer-implemented invention hinges on whether the claim is directed at an application of the mathematical algorithm as opposed to the algorithm itself. A logical conclusion of "software is mathematics" in the sense above is that any threshold test of whether a mathematical algorithm is present in the invention is always passed when software is used. Attempts to distinguish computer algorithms that are 'mathematical' from those which are not run contrary to the principles of computer science. Then the section 101 analysis must proceed to whether the claim is directed to a patent-eligible application of the algorithm as opposed to the patent-ineligible abstract idea. A proposal for doing this will be presented in section C below.
It clearly state that software is always algorithms and this is abstract. The legal problem is whether the claim is on the software or some patentable application like curing rubber. The courts need a workable approach to tell the two apart which won't be worked around by patent attorneys. This is what section C is for.

[ Reply to This | Parent | # ]

Do they want to hear this?
Authored by: Anonymous on Saturday, March 16 2013 @ 12:22 PM EDT
People often don't want to hear things that
suggest that their raison d'etre is based on
a series of large errors.

Maybe this should be sugar coated and provide
them with alternative career suggestions, as
this is fairly damning stuff.

I jest of course, this must be widely
circulated.

[ Reply to This | Parent | # ]

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