Patently-O Bits & Bytes by Lawrence Higgins

USPTO's Steve Jobs Exhibit
  • On November 16th the USPTO unveiled the Steve Jobs exhibit, highlighting the Patents and Trademarks of Steve Jobs. "This exhibit commemorates the far-reaching impact of Steve Jobs' entrepreneurship and innovation on our daily lives," said David Kappos. "His patents and trademarks provide a striking example of the importance intellectual property plays in the global marketplace." The exhibit features more than 300 of the patents that Steve bear Steve Jobs name. The exhibit will run through January 15, 2012 and is free and open to the public. [Link] [Link]
Kauffman Foundation

  • The Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation is pleased to announce that the nomination period is now open for the Kauffman Junior Faculty Fellowship in Entrepreneurship Research (KJFF). The Kauffman Foundation will award up to seven Junior Faculty Fellowship grants to junior faculty members in the United States whose research has the potential to make significant contributions to the body of literature in entrepreneurship. Each Fellow's university will receive a grant of $40,000 over two years to support the research activities of the Fellow. Nominees must be tenured or tenure-track junior faculty members at accredited U.S. institutions of higher education who received a Ph.D. or equivalent doctoral degree between January 1, 2007 and December 31, 2010. [Link]
Northern District of California
  • The Court is considering adopting a new Civil Local Rule 5-4 that will address the requirements for electronic filing and abrogating General Order 45. The new rule reflects the evolution of the e-filing program and more accurately captures the current requirements than does the general order which was written in 2003 shortly after the inception of the e-filing program. Comments may be submitted by sending an e-mail to before 5:00 p.m. (PST) on December 14, 2011. View the notice and the draft rule: [Link].
  • On November 10, 2011, the District and Magistrate Judges of the Northern District of California adopted General Order 67, promulgating new procedures for the assignment of patent cases. In order to allow necessary changes to be made to the District's computer-based case assignment system, the new procedures will become effective on January 1, 2012. Earlier in 2011, the Northern District successfully applied to the Administrative Office of the United States Courts for designation as a participating district in the Patent Pilot Program. District Judges participating in the program are: Chief District Judge James Ware, Senior District Judge Ronald Whyte, District Judge Jeffrey S. White, District Judge Lucy Koh and District Judge Edward Davila.
  • Although the implementing patent pilot statute refers to District Judges as pilot judges, the Northern District has taken the position that the patent pilot statute does not supersede statutes that allow Magistrate Judges to handle any case pursuant to consent by the parties. Therefore, as the following Magistrate Judges have a particular interest in presiding over patent cases and subject to consent of the parties, the Court will strive to increase the number of patent cases assigned to these judges: Magistrate Judge Elizabeth Laporte, Magistrate Judge Joseph C. Spero, Magistrate Judge Laurel Beeler, Magistrate Judge Donna M. Ryu, Magistrate Judge Paul Grewal, Magistrate Judge Jacqueline Scott Corley and Magistrate Judge Nathanael Cousins. In the remaining weeks of 2011, members of Judge Koh's committee will hold a series of meetings with local bar associations to discuss the new procedures. View the notice and the text of General Order 67: [Link].
Patent Jobs:
  • Young Basile is searching for a patent attorney with 1-4 years of experience and a degree in EE or CS. [Link]
  • Singleton Law Firm is looking for a patent attorney/agent to work in the electrical area. [Link]
  • Coats & Bennett is seeking a patent attorney with a degree in EE and at least 2 years of patent prep and prosecution experience. [Link]
  • Sheppard Mullin is seeking 2 attorneys (1) an associate with at least 2 years of patent prosecution experience, and (2) an associate with 2-4 years of patent litigation experience. [Link]
  • McDermott Will & Emery is searching for an associate with 2-5 years of patent litigation experience. [Link]
  • Howard & Howard is seeking a patent attorney with 3-9 years of experience in patent prep and prosecution and a chemical background. [Link]
  • Patterson Thuente IP is looking for a patent attorney with a minimum of 2 years experience in patent prosecution for high tech clients. [Link]
  • Michaud-Kinney Group is searching for an IP associate with an electrical or mechanical background and at least 3 years of experience in patent prep and prosecution. [Link]
  • O'Brien Jones is looking for patent attorneys/agents with 2-5 years of experience. [Link]
  • Buether Joe & Carpenter is seeking 1 or more attorneys with patent infringement litigation experience. (5 or more years of patent litigation experience preferred) [Link]
  • Cantor Colburn is searching for a patent attorney with an advanced degree in organic chemistry and at least 2 years of patent drafting experience. [Link]
Upcoming Events:
  • On December 1, 2011, the Institute for Intellectual Property and Social Justice (IIPSJ) will co-present with the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) the Second National IP Empowerment Summit. The IIPSJ/USPTO IP Empowerment Summit will serve the general public and intellectual property professional and activist community in educating and empowering minority and marginalized artists, inventors, entrepreneurs, and other IP stakeholders in underserved communities. The Summit will provide practical information and presentations for creators and inventors regarding the development, protection, and exploitation of their own innovative and creative works as well as works and inventions in the public domain. [Link]
  • Indiana University School of Law's Center for IP Law and Innovation will hold "The America Invents Act: Patent Law's New Lease on Life" symposium on December 2nd. Speakers include a legendary patent law jurist, patent reform leaders, chief corporate patent counsel, leading practitioners and scholars, as well as the PTO's Patent Reform Coordinator. [Link]
  • The American Conference Institute's 2nd Annual Forum on: Paragraph IV Disputes will be held in San Francisco on December 7th. Experienced faculty of renowned litigators and judges will guide attendees through every stage of a Paragraph IV challenge to help them formulate offensive moves and defensive plays. (Patently-O readers can receive a discount by registering with code PO 200) [Link]
  • IBC Legal is holding a conference on International Patent Litigation 2011 in London on December 7th-8th. Use VIP Code FKW82249PO to get a 10% discount. [Link]
  • The Lawyers Association of Kansas City will be presenting a 4 hour CLE on changes to US patent law under the America Invents Act at the offices of Lathrop & Gage in Kansas City, MO on Thursday, Dec. 8, 2011 from 1pm to 5pm. Presenters include: Kent Erickson, Bryan Stanley, and John Garretson. [Link]
  • The WSBA IP Section, WSPLA, IEEE IP Professional Initiative, and the University of Washington School of Law's Law, Technology & Arts Group will be presenting an all-day CLE at the University of Washington School of Law on Friday, December 9, 2011 on the impacts of the America Invents Act.
  • Fitch, Even, Tabin & Flannery will hold a free webinar, "Collection, Review, and Production of Your Client's Electronic Information," presented by Shane Delsman on December 14, 2011 at 12:00 noon EST. The webinar will cover topics including collecting electronically stored information (ESI) for further use in the e-discovery process; processing collected ESI; reviewing ESI for relevance and privilege; producing ESI in appropriate forms and storage media; and how the Federal Rules affect the above procedures. [Link]
  • On December 16, the University of San Diego School of Law will host "A Review of the America Invents Act and its impact on the USPTO," with David Kappos. Kappos will discuss the USPTO's efforts to start implementing the law and also give a broad perspective of the various changes the agency is undertaking to facilitate the public's understanding of regulatory revisions. Also, Leonard Svensson will provide a brief overview of the major changes included in the America Invents Act and what the changes means for the San Diego innovation economy. [Link]
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15 thoughts on “Patently-O Bits & Bytes by Lawrence Higgins

  1. 15

    Look at all of MM’s friends gather round and mourn the day he lost control of the playground.

    [eye roll]

    The thing is, sockie, me and the commenters you refer to as “my friends” have all had our disagreements. But I don’t ever remember any of those folks ever going off the deep end where youa and the other sockpuppeteers consistently go.

    In another world, where MaxDrei and Ned and myself were completely looney tunes axxwipes like yourself, each of us could come up with ten different names and take relentless dxmps on you, day in day out. And we would post axxhxle crxp under your own obnoxious pseudoynm(s) – HAR HAR HAR! So funny.

    But we don’t do that. Have you ever wondered why?

  2. 14

    Then find another blog to trxll, sockie.

    Translation: This blog is trxlled by the sockie MM, damnit gumbie, this is (or was) his playground.

    Look at all of MM’s friends gather round and mourn the day he lost control of the playground. Comments here used to be so fun and witty (what was that about three or four years ago when necrophilia was all the rage?), right MaxDrei?

  3. 13

    The bill will make it harder and more expensive for small firms to get and enforce their patents. Without patents we cant get funded.

    What’s your annual income and net worth?

  4. 12

    “Ned Heller” and “making definitions” are two things I never want to see in the same discussion.

    Then find another blog to trxll, sockie. Make it part of your plan to get a life.

  5. 11

    “Ned Heller” and “making definitions” are two things I never want to see in the same discussion.

  6. 9

    OK, I’ll bite.

    Software Patent:

    Any patent containing a claim that recites a series of computer program steps either expressly or implicitly, and which

    1) is not part of a machine that includes components other than a general purpose digital computer that executes the program steps; or which

    2) does not transform an an article into a new state or thing.

  7. 8

    That said, the abuse claim by Google may be more related to the (poor) quality of the software patents that MS has and are using against Google.

    No doubt. Do you suppose Google owns and maintains any patents that are equally dubious?

    we need a good definition of what a software patent is. There does not seem to be a working definition that everyone agrees to.

    Waiting for “everyone” to “agree” on a “good definition” sounds like an incredibly bad idea … unless of course one approves of the status quo and simply wishes to derail further discussion.

  8. 7


    Never mind that his company spent millions lobbying Congress to pass a bill that destroys the patent system for all but the largest of firms.

    “patent reform”

    “This is not a patent reform bill” Senator Maria Cantwell (D-WA) complained, despite other democrats praising the overhaul. “This is a big corporation patent giveaway that tramples on the right of small inventors.”

    Senator Cantwell is right. Just because they call it “reform” doesn’t mean it is. The agents of banks, huge multinationals, and China are at it again trying to brain wash and bankrupt America.

    They should have called the bill the America STOPS Inventing Act or ASIA, because that’s where it is sending all our jobs.

    The patent bill is nothing less than another monumental federal giveaway for banks, huge multinationals, and China and an off shoring job killing nightmare for America. Even the leading patent expert in China has stated the bill will help them steal our inventions. Who are the supporters of this bill working for??

    Patent reform is a fraud on America. This bill will not do what they claim it will. What it will do is help large multinational corporations maintain their monopolies by robbing and killing their small entity and startup competitors (so it will do exactly what the large multinationals paid for) and with them the jobs they would have created. The bill will make it harder and more expensive for small firms to get and enforce their patents. Without patents we cant get funded. Yet small entities create the lion’s share of new jobs. According to recent studies by the Kauffman Foundation and economists at the U.S. Census Bureau, “startups aren’t everything when it comes to job growth. They’re the only thing.” This bill is a wholesale slaughter of US jobs. Those wishing to help fight this bill should contact us as below.

    Small entities and inventors have been given far too little voice on this bill when one considers that they rely far more heavily on the patent system than do large firms who can control their markets by their size alone. The smaller the firm, the more they rely on patents -especially startups and individual inventors. Congress tinkering with patent law while gagging inventors is like a surgeon operating before examining the patient.

    Those wishing to help fight big business giveaways should contact us as below and join the fight as we are building a network of inventors and other stakeholders to lobby Congress to restore property rights for all patent owners -large and small.

    Please see link to for a different/opposing view on patent reform.
    link to

  9. 6

    Malcolm, if you have ever been involved in a lawsuit as a defendant as inside counsel, the less said about the subject matter of the lawsuit the better. It is always good to keep one’s mouth shut and let outside counsel speak. Why? Everything you say can and will be distorted beyond recognition. Trust me on this.

    Regarding MS, I don’t think they are “abusing the system” in any way that other companies before them have abused the system. It is generally known and understood that companies undergo three overall phases with respect to patents

    – at startup, they vitally need patents to protect their business from being crushed by established companies;

    – after they are established, they continue to file patents, but rely generally on the quality and cost of their products to win market share; and

    – in decline, they use their patents to make money until the bitter end.

    MS seems to be in the bitter end mode with respect to its cellphone OS business.

    That said, the abuse claim by Google may be more related to the (poor) quality of the software patents that MS has and are using against Google. They may be of the kind you so often laugh at here, and for good reason. They seem, on their face, to be obvious as hades; which brings us back to the recommendation of the presidential commission of the late ’60s that recommended against patenting software patents for the very reason that they could not be adequately examined.

    My simple recommendation in response to all of the above is to expand the new special review of BMPs to all “software” patents.

    However, we need a good definition of what a software patent is, as I said before in another thread. There does not seem to be a working definition that everyone agrees to.

  10. 5

    future opponents in patent litigation could seize on comments opposing software patents as evidence that Google deliberately flouts the law.

    So if I say that “the US patent system and computer technology companies in general would be better off without software patents”, some patentee down the road is likely to argue in court that this constitutes relevant, admissable evidence that I (or a company that I represent) am guilty of willful infringement of a particular patent?

    What else is relevant, in that case? The music on my iPod? Which crossword puzzles I do? My favorite pizza toppings?

  11. 4

    What is there to troll? It is a decent article over at ars. Big whoop. Everyone already knows there are a few reasons why some big companies don’t come out guns a blazin’ against software patents as such. They’ve been discussed to death.

  12. 1

    Malcolm, you need to read this:

    link to

    “A Google patent lawyer says that the patent system is broken, and he accuses Microsoft of abusing the system. Speaking to the San Francisco Chronicle on Sunday, Google’s Tim Porter pointed to Microsoft’s attacks on Linux as an example of its broader corporate strategy.

    “When their products stop succeeding in the marketplace, when they get marginalized, as is happening now with Android, they use the large patent portfolio they’ve built up to get revenue from the success of other companies’ products,” he said.

    Microsoft has argued that the patent royalties it seeks from Android vendors are part of the natural evolution of a new industry. Porter disagrees.”

    “So why is Google unwilling to admit that we’d be better off without software patents? We can only speculate, but there are two likely explanations: one is that public companies like Google are inherently conservative institutions. They worry that taking “radical” positions might damage their reputations and cause PR problems. For example, future opponents in patent litigation could seize on comments opposing software patents as evidence that Google deliberately flouts the law.

    Second, companies tend to delegate decisions about their patent policy stance to patent lawyers. And patent lawyers overwhelmingly believe that software (and almost everything else) should be eligible for patent protection.”

    Patent lawyers.

    Like GSR?

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