TTI v. IBG: Federal Circuit clarifies meaning of “technical solution to a technical problem”

Trading Technologies International, Inc. v. IBG LLC, Interactive Brokers, LLC (Fed. Cir. April 19, 2019).  Panel: Moore (author), Mayer, and Linn  Download TTI v IBG (April 18, 2019)

Trading Technologies International, Inc. v. IBG LLC, Interactive Brokers, LLC (Fed. Cir. April 30, 2019), Panel: Moore (author), Clevenger and Wallach.  Download TTI v. IBG (April 30, 2019)

This is a long post since it covers two opinions addressing Covered Business Method (CBM) review for business method claims, plus discussion of two related opinions for good measure.  tl;dr: The Federal Circuit affirmed the PTAB that the claims are subject to CBM review and are directed to ineligible subject matter.  Along the way it clarified some its jurisprudence interpreting the threshold CBM review regulation.

A potential conflict disclosure at the outset: MBHB, which represented Trading Technologies on these appeals, is the primary financial sponsor of PatentlyO.

On to the writeup…

***

Background

Both April opinions in TTI v. IBG involve the same procedural posture, the same general subject matter (displaying market information to traders), and the same issues on appeal: whether the claimed inventions are subject to the “technological inventions” exception to CBM review and whether they claim patent eligible subject matter.  In both cases, the PTAB concluded that the patents were subject to CBM review and held the patents directed to patent ineligible subject matter.  Of the two opinions, the court’s April 18, 2019 opinion is meatier on both issues, so I’ll mainly focus that one.

The two April opinions also provide a counterpoint to the court’s February nonprecedential opinion involving the same parties, the same area of technology, the same procedural posture (appeal from Covered Business Method review decisions by the PTAB), and for some of the patents, the same outcome at the PTAB: lack of subject matter eligibility.   See TTI v. IBG (Fed. Cir. Feb 13, 2019) (nonprecedential).  Writing per curiam, the panel in the February opinion (Judges Lourie, Moore and Reyna) held the patents were for “technological inventions,” and thus were not properly subject to CBM review.  In the two April opinions, overlapping panels (Judges Moore, Mayer and Linn in one and Judges Moore, Clevenger and Wallach in the other) reached the opposite conclusion on different sets of GUI patents.

“Patents for Technological Inventions”

A threshold question for CBM review is whether the patents-in-suit are “patents for technological inventions.   Generally, CBM review is available “a patent that claims a method or corresponding apparatus for performing data processing or other operations used in the practice, administration, or management of a financial product or service…”  America Invents Act, § 18(a)(1)(E).  However, this mechanism comes with an important caveat: “…except that this term does not include patents for technological inventions.”  Id.

The USPTO regulation implementing the “technological invention” exception states that:

In determining whether a patent is for a technological invention solely for purposes of the Transitional Program for Covered Business Methods (section 42.301(a)), the following will be considered on a case-by-case basis: whether the claimed subject matter as a whole recites a technological feature that is novel and unobvious over the prior art; and solves a technical problem using a technical solution.

37 C.F.R. § 42.301(b). In Versata v. SAP, 793 F.3d 1306 (Fed. Cir. 2015), the Federal Circuit criticized the regulation while offering a sliver of guidance.  “In short, neither the statute’s punt to the USPTO nor the agency’s lateral of the ball offer anything very useful in understanding the meaning of the term ‘technological invention,'” the court wrote, concluding that “we agree with the PTAB that this is not a technical solution but more akin to creating organizational management charts.”  Id. at 1326, 1327.  

In a subsequent opinion, the court clarified the regulation as involving a “prong”-type analysis: that is, if a patent fails to meet either the “technological feature” or the “solves a technical problem using a technical solution,” it is not a “technological invention.”  See Apple v. Ameranth, 842 F.3d 1229, 1240 (Fed. Cir. 2016) (“We need not address this argument regarding whether the first prong of 37 C.F.R. § 42.301(b) was met, as we affirm the Board’s determination on the second prong of the regulation—that the claimed subject matter as a whole does not solve a technical problem using a technical solution.”)  The court did not elaborate on the meaning of the “solves a technical problem using a technical solution” language.

Meaning of “solves a technical problem using a technical solution”

The two April TTI v. IBG decisions shed additional light on the meaning of the “technical problem” and “technical solution” prong, drawing a distinction between the practice of a financial product as opposed to a technological invention:

“TT argues the inventions addressed technical problems in the way prior art GUI tools were constructed and operated. It claims the ’999 patent addressed problems related to speed, efficiency, and usability, and the ’056 patent. It claims the ’999 patent addressed problems related to speed, efficiency, and usability, and the ’056 patent addressed problems related to intuitiveness, visualization, and efficiency.”

April 18, 2019 Slip Op. at 8-9.  The Federal Circuit held that this is not a technical solution to a technical problem:

“We agree with the Board that the patents relate to the practice of a financial product, not a technological invention.  The specification states that a successful trader anticipates the market to gain an advantage, ’999 patent at 1:20–26, but doing so is difficult because it requires assembling data from various sources and processing that data effectively, id. at 1:51–54. The invention solves this problem by displaying trading information “in an easy to see and interpret graphical format.” Id. at 2:3–6. The specification makes clear that the invention simply displays information that allows a trader to process information more quickly.”

Ultimately, “This invention makes the trader faster and more efficient, not the computer.  This is not a technical solution to a technical problem.”  April 18, 2019 Slip Op. at 9 (emphasis in original).

Additional language in the opinion reinforces this line between business problems and solutions and technological problems and solutions.  In rejecting a challenge to the PTAB’s decision not to consider the testimony of TTI’s expert, the court wrote “Nothing in his declaration asserts that the claimed interface did anything other than present information in a new and more efficient way to traders. Even if the Board had considered this testimony, it could not have reached a different conclusion.”  April 18, 2019 Slip Op. at 10.  Analyzing another GUI patent, the court stated that providing the trader with information in the claimed manner “is focused on improving the trader, not the functioning of the computer.”

“Indeed, the specification acknowledges that the invention ‘can be implemented on any existing or future terminal with the processing capability to perform the functions described,’ id. at 4:4–6, and ‘is not limited by the method used to map the data to the screen display,’ which ‘can be done by any technique known to those skilled in the art,’ id. at 4:64–67.”

The court’s April 30 opinion, reached the same conclusion on a different patent using similar reasoning.  “Merely providing a trader with new or different information in an existing trading screen is not a technical solution to a technical problem,” the court wrote, before repeating the language about the method focusing on “improving the trader, not the functioning of the computer.”   Apr. 30, 2019 Slip Op. at 7.

One final notable aspect of this set of the opinions: By affirming the PTAB on the second prong of the “technological inventions” regulation, the Federal Circuit avoided needing to address TTI’s argument that “Versata set aside the novelty and nonobviousness language of the first prong of the regulation….”  Apr. 18, 2019 Slip Op. at 8.  That issue remains unsettled.

Patent Eligible Subject Matter

The Federal Circuit affirmed the PTAB on the issue of lack of patent eligible subject matter for all the patents-in-suit in a fairly routine review.  The court conducted the Alice two-stage analysis, concluding that the claims were directed to abstract ideas and did not include an inventive concept.  The most interesting aspect of this component of the court’s analysis is the relationship with the 2017 TTI v. CQG nonprecedential opinion discussed below.

Constitutional Challenges: Not preserved by four sentences

The court declined to address TTI’s constitutional challenges, which consisted of “a total of four sentences in each of its opening briefs” based on “a right to a jury under the Seventh Amendment, separation of powers under Article III, the Due Process Clause, and the Taking Clause.”  “Such a conclusory assertion with no analysis to the underlying challenge is insufficient to preserve the issue for appeal.”  Id.

***

Relationship with Prior Decisions

As I noted at the outset, these opinions represent a counterpoint to the court’s February nonprecedential opinion, although since the April decisions are precedential and the February one was not, there isn’t direct legal tension.

The February opinion involved a review of a set of CBM review PTAB decisions finding that the both the two patents involved an even earlier opinion, Trading Technologies International, Inc. v. CQG, Inc., 675 F. Appx 1001 (Fed. Cir. 2017) (nonprecedential), and two other patents were not “technological inventions” and therefore were subject to CBM; in the subsequent CBM review, the PTAB held that the two patents from TTI v. CQG were directed to patent eligible subject matter but the other two patents were not.  As with the April decisions, all the patents involved GUI claims.

The Federal Circuit reversed as to the institution decision on all four patents.  For the two patents involved in TTI v. CQG, the Federal Circuit reasoned that because the two patents were directed to patent eligible subject matter, they must be “technological inventions.”  For the other two patents, the Federal Circuit reasoned that “because we see no meaningful difference between the claimed subject matter [of the two sets of patents] for purposes of the technological invention question, the same conclusion applies in those cases as well.  (This is puzzling to me, since the PTAB held that the first set of patents were directed to patent eligible subject matter but the second set were not.)

There’s also the tension between the subject matter eligibility determination in TTI v. CQG and the lack of subject matter eligibility determinations in the two April 2019 TTI v. IBG decisions, but I’ll leave that for others to opine on.  The Federal Circuit itself declined TTI’s invitation to get into the specifics of how its April 2019 decisions relate to the earlier decisions:

“TT argues that because nonprecedential decisions of this court held that other TT patents were for technological inventions or claimed eligible subject matter, we should too. We are not bound by non-precedential decisions at all, much less ones to different patents, different specifications, or different claims. Each panel must evaluate the claims presented to it. Eligibility depends on what is claimed, not all that is disclosed in the specification.”

April 18, 2019 Slip Op. at 19.

65 thoughts on “TTI v. IBG: Federal Circuit clarifies meaning of “technical solution to a technical problem”

  1. 10

    Ah yes, a typical “Malcolm joins late, does nothing but kick up dust with his “Derp” dance, and does not engage any points of the various conversations in any meaningful and inte11ectually honest manner” set of blight.

    Happy 14th year there Malcolm.

    1. 10.1

      Apologies, but I don’t find a discussion of blue balls very productive or meaningful in the context of the case which is the subject of the post.

      The pattern of displayed information on a pre-existing display screen that is hooked up to a prior art computer isn’t a “technical” improvement to the display screen or the computer. For the same reason, the pattern of displayed information on a page in a book is also not a “technical” improvement to the book. For the purpose of making the determination, it doesn’t matter that some scientist has “determined” that, e.g., individuals with a gene mutation at position Y find the particular arrangement of information easier to read under a full moon.

      1. 10.1.1

        For the purpose of making the determination, it doesn’t matter that some

        Maybe.

        Maybe not.

        As you are unwilling to actually engage the matter on the merits in any sense of inte11ectual honesty, your “contributions” just don’t matter.

  2. 9

    Here’s a great idea! Let’s have a discussion about a definition for “technical” that begins with the premise that an EP decision about the patentability of a (LOL) distinctly colored but otherwise pre-existing racquetball was sensible. I’m sure that will be really productive!

    Coming up a definition of “technical” is not particularly difficult. The problem — as always — arises when one assumes that the term must cover “new” instructions for an existing programmable computer. Because dang that computer is shiny! And lookie! It does the math, exactly the way you tell it do the math! Surely that is the height of technology and you know it’s true because Bill Gates is rich. Surely the Invisible Hand knows great technology when it … does whatever it does that nobody can see.

    1. 9.1

      Folding in multiples of your vapid positions only magnified the vapidity of your posts Malcolm.

      That you don’t see this is actually somewhat comical.

      1. 9.1.1

        “Derp derp here ar my comments in a dynamic hierarchical view with icons and a button for your derp reply. Comments in a blog were invented by Derpy McDerpderp and the buttons you can click on were invented by Derpus Derpinsky. The concept of a hierarchy was invented by at least ten derps and you know that because it was so elegant and simple. All these things are super techno and maybe even triple derp super double techno because derp combination.”

        1. 9.1.1.1

  3. 8

    “Instead, they recite a purportedly new arrangement of generic information that assists traders in processing information more quickly. E.g., ’999 patent at 2:39–41. We conclude that the claims are directed to the abstract idea of graphing bids and offers to assist a trader to make an order.” (page 15, emphasis added)

    This little game of saying that “we conclude” and then some bizarre statement about an abstract idea is just so far from jurisprudence that I think this rises to the level of dissolving the CAFC. This is just sheer nonsense.

    So—let’s be clear. A machine that processes (or transforms) information into a more usable form for humans is not patent eligible. There is no reason given by the “judges.” They went into their chambers with a warm towel and came out with ’cause we feel like it.

    Just shameful.

    1. 8.1

      How in the world too can someone say that something that helps a person do a job better is not patent eligible when it is a machine that is helping the person?

      Just beyond reason. I am sure Bryer would say that the Pharahs had scribes that held up signs and had improved the signs to more readable so this is the same thing.

      1. 8.1.1

        something that helps a person do a job better

        Like a reminder note written on a piece of paper.

        Sure, that should be patent eligible because, hey, “it helps a person do a derp job derp better derp derp.”

        1. 8.1.1.1

          “Like a…”

          You left out “machine” in your hurry to be snarky.

          And guess what (although I know that you know this): the inventor of the first programmable computer did NOT invent all programs that provide an improvement to that computer. That “all programming” simply is not “already in there.”

          I know this because this is covered in the Grand Hall experiment, and you have always been afraid to treat that experiment in an inte11ectually honest manner.

          Just like you are inte11ectually DIShonest about software somehow not being a design choice of computing wares and instead merely you prevaricating with mis-portraying software as BEING “only logic” (which is why you never answer my return point of ‘how is your project on obtaining copyright on Just Logic’), and just like you are inte11ectually DIShonest as you attempt to advocate even though your own admissions against interests of your statements as to knowing and understanding the controlling law of the exceptions to the judicial doctrine of printed matter would ethically constrain such prevarication and dissembling from you (you need yet another invitation to discuss the plain, simple and direct language of the Simple Set Theory explication?)

          Of course, these are not new points, and have been on record against your dissembling nonsense for years now.

          Ah but let’s see that “it’s easy to define” ‘technical’ from you. Remember not to be circular (and remember to include my counter point on Deming and how business methods fall into that ‘simple’ definition of yours).

          1. 8.1.1.1.1

            …and then (in your ample spare time), you might actually try to be on point with the example of the innovation of the particular improvement by way of the blue racquetball.

            Your snark does not count for meaningfully engaging that hypo.

            Are you afraid to engage (in an inte11ectually honest manner)?

          2. 8.1.1.1.2

            You left out derp “machine” in your derp hurry to be snarky.

            But I included “paper”, which is a “manufacture” and a “composition of matter” and therefore it’s, like, totally eligible for patenting. Giles Derp says so!

            1. 8.1.1.1.2.1

              That was not the claim.

              Try staying on point.

          3. 8.1.1.1.3

            mis-portraying software as BEING “only logic”

            Software is logic written in the form of instructions.

            The CAFC just finished telling you that. But I haven’t.

            LOL

            1. 8.1.1.1.3.1

              Still need that reference to the simple and direct (you know, English language) Simple Set Theory explication as to the exceptions to the judicial doctrine of printed matter?

        2. 8.1.1.2

          MM, is writing a note on a piece of paper a machine performing the processing?

          Also, you are confusing 103 with 101. You want it to seem not eligible under 101 because it is simple.

          1. 8.1.1.2.1

            is writing a note on a piece of paper a machine performing the processing

            No, it’s a method of making a composition of matter. Also a process of recording information.

            Not sure what your point is.

            You want it to seem not eligible under 101 because it is simple.

            It’s not eligible under 101 because it’s information. Putting the information in a prior art context doesn’t make that information eligible for protection with a patent. See Mayo v. Prometheus, a case which will never, ever be overturned.

            1. 8.1.1.2.1.1

              Mayo is inapposite to software.

              Do you need a kindergartner to explain that to you?

              1. 8.1.1.2.1.1.1

                Mayo is inapposite to software.

                No, it’s most definitely not.

                1. Yes. It definitely is.

                  Now that we have that, maybe you will start engaging on the merits…? (in an inte11ectually honest manner)

            2. 8.1.1.2.1.2

              Malcolm blandly contradicts himself in his typical dissembling efforts with the contrast of stating that his snarky addition is:

              No, it’s a method of making a composition of matter. Also a process of recording information.

              At the same time that he does not want his snarky addition to be either a manufacture or a process, but instead:

              It’s not eligible under 101 because it’s information.

              Information is not a manufacture in any context, let alone a prior art context (whatever you think you mean by that).

              Information is not a process.

              Not sure what your point is.

              Indeed. Maybe if you stopped with that statement, actually put some thought into why that would be the case, and stopped dissembling in your advocacy based on your feelings, we ALL would be better off.

    2. 8.2

      Newman said in the previous case that the interface couldn’t be abstract because it was new.

      Basically what we have is this word “abstract” that is being used to put anything one of these “judges” feels like putting in the word.

      1. 8.2.1

        Newman said in the previous case that the interface couldn’t be abstract because it was new.

        Which makes no sense whatsoever as the two concepts (“new” and “abstract”) are unrelated.

        1. 8.2.1.1

          MM, we agree! I agree that new and abstract are unrelated just as old and well-known and abstract are unrelated.

          Agree!

    3. 8.3

      The other thing about this too is the big picture.

      Big picture–during the iron age we had machines that helped people do mechanical things better.

      During the information age the machines are helping people do information tasks better or to automate information processing tasks.

      Just unbelievable that the court that is supposed to respect and understand science would just act like the year is 1900. I am sure, by the way, that in 1900 this would be patent eligible. It is only now when “abstract” has been weaponized by the anti-patent judicial activists that we have a different story.

      1. 8.3.1

        the court that is supposed to respect and understand science would just act like the year is 1900.

        The patent statute was written in 1952. 1952 is closer to 1900 than 2019.

        Think about it.

        1. 8.3.1.1

          You asking anyone else to think…

          Stultifying.

  4. 7

    Let’s take this out of the computing/software arena and entertain an analogy (that I think MaxDrei had once introduced): racquetball color.

    Let’s start with a standard black racquetball, invented as a sports implement for the new game of racquetball. For our purposes, we will presume the new ball is patent eligible as well as patentable (not obvious over, for example, tennis balls).

    Along comes some sports research and engineering teams investigating how to make improvements to the sport and discover that (by and large) the human eye has better “speed” recognition for objects having particular wavelengths of reflected light (i.e., color).

    Is a blue (the researched and engineered item) racquetball a “technical” advance?

    Does it really matter that “actual blue” is a determination in the mind of a human?”

    Why or why not?

    1. 7.1

      Missing question: Are the claims actually claiming a blue screened and framed racquet, with dependent claims to the spectrum range, and is the applicant asserting that that is 101 new and useful? Or is it generic, result, over-claiming of an improved racquet ball game in which the racquet is more visible to humans while in motion?

      1. 7.1.1

        the blue is the ball – not the raquet.

        Take it as an “objective physical structure” claim.

      2. 7.1.2

        Paul, the idea is that using a ball that is blue, not conventional black, raises the standard of play because (surprisingly) human players pick up (against the white wall background of the court) and assimilate the flight path of the blue ball faster than they do the black ball. Who would have thunk it?

        Specimen claim: Squash racquets ball, characterized in that it is blue. Is that a technical solution to a technical problem? Discuss!

    2. 7.2

      There is no novelty in merely changing the surface color of any object- for any reason or no reason. It can’t be the subject matter of a patent. Even in this respect, if you had a non-human use for the changed color, it would likely be closer to eligibility. Mechanical and chemical changes that are color affected may be patentable applications.

      1. 7.2.1

        There is no novelty in merely changing the surface color of any object- for any reason or no reason.

        Wait a minute, as a categorical assertion this cannot be correct. If it were to turn out that wooden siding painted one particular shade of green is resistant to termites, then “a wooden slab between 10 mm and 30 mm in thickness, wherein the slab is coated on at least one side with a means of reflecting light waves with a wavelength of 547 nm” is a useful article (termite resistant building material) in a subject matter eligible category (manufacture) that is both novel and nonobvious.

        The only novelty here inheres in the color of paint. Nevertheless, that is still enough to pass through all substantive patentability filters.

        1. 7.2.1.1

          Actually, I do not know if that is novel in the real world. It is possible that there already exist wooden slabs painted that particular shade of green. Please assume for the sake of my hypo that no such wooden slab has ever yet been painted that exact shade of green.

          1. 7.2.1.1.1

            No shades of green by themselves are novel or non-obvious. PHOSITA in the selection of colors could, without teaching or motivation, use any color imaginable.

            If some exact color and no other deters termites, you have a new discovery, but you don’t necessarily have novelty in applying that color to a surface by conventional means and using it to deter termites. Per my scheme and comment, you are closer to eligibility because green 33FF33 deters termites is information in non-human use. If your PHOSITA is a person who deters termites, given the knowledge that 33FF33 deters them, would they be motivated to paint objects that shade?

            1. 7.2.1.1.1.1

              No shades of green by themselves are novel or non-obvious. PHOSITA in the selection of colors could, without teaching or motivation, use any color imaginable.

              That is an acceptable argument under Argentine law, but if that were a complete analysis under US law then there would be no such category in US law as “unexpected results.” The fact that our law does recognize that unexpected results are relevant to the obviousness analysis means that you have to go farther than just “the PHOSITA could use this shade of green.”

              1. 7.2.1.1.1.1.1

                It’s not even close to US law in regards to what PHOSITA means.

                There are times when your politeness does a disservice.

                Marty would be much better off with a hard slap than a touch of a velvet glove.

            2. 7.2.1.1.1.2

              [Y]ou don’t necessarily have novelty in applying that color to a surface by conventional means…

              Right, I acknowledged as much in my 7.2.1.1. I think that the hypo is more interesting if we pretend that this shade of green really never has been applied to wooden shingles before, so let’s just pretend as much.

              In reality, you are probably correct that someone in the U.S. has painted a wood board this shade of green before.

              1. 7.2.1.1.1.2.1

                I’m not sure you need 102 anticipation to get to 103 obviousness of any color in the completely known electromagnetic spectrum.

                But that same doctrine that allows for a new use for an old drug may apply for repelling termites with a particular wavelength.

                This is similar to a diagnostic claim; you have the item of information that one wavelength (give or take) repels termites. You have no further novel application other than exposing termites to that wavelength by conventional means.

                Maybe it’s enough. I could see it. Maybe because they are repelled rather than merely detected….

                1. Wait a minute, one is not claiming the information here. Not even close. One is claiming the article of manufacture (the board painted green).

                  This is light years away from a claim to the information itself (the idea of repelling termites, or the idea of painting things green). The hypo claim in question here is quite definitely limited to the useful application of the information (the article of manufacture).

                  I think that the reason why the question seems tricky is because we both know that in reality this claim would turn out to be frankly anticipated. It is hard to pretend that we live in a world in which no one has ever painted a wooden slat this precise shade of green. Try as one might to accept the terms of the hypo, one’s brain keeps smuggling back in the intuition that a board painted this shade of green is surely in the prior art (as I am sure that it is, in reality).

                  In such a world, however, it seems clear to me that this article is patentable.

                2. not sure you need 102 anticipation to get to 103 obviousness of any color in the completely known electromagnetic spectrum.

                  Golly, with this thinking the mere three items of Protons, Neutrons, and Electrons makes everything obvious (and SO much easier to see).

                3. In such a world, however, it seems clear to me that this article is patentable.

                  Do you mean that you think this article to be patent eligible?

                  Your desire to be “polite” and “gentle” bleads over and obscures clarity here.

                  There is a very real difference between being patentable and being patent eligible.

        2. 7.2.1.2

          …sounds like “@$$-hattery to me…

        3. 7.2.1.3

          If termites [even though usually blind] do not like a particular shade of green, is not that an unpatentable discovery of a pre-existing “law of nature”?

          1. 7.2.1.3.1

            A claim directed to “use of 547 nm to repel termites” or “the idea of 547 nm green repelling termites” would be a law of nature. “A wooden slat colored to reflect 547 nm light” is an article of manufacture, not a “law of nature” or “natural product.”

            1. 7.2.1.3.1.1

              Merely being an “article of manufacture” even if also satisfying the other 101 requirement of having the proper type of utility – that of the Useful Arts, is NOT ENOUGH to escape classification by our Supreme Court as to what “really” is being claimed.

              (the “gift” of the “Gist/Abstract” sword in the leading edge of “Gist” also applies to the other scrivined exceptions to the words of Congress)

          2. 7.2.1.3.2

            unpatentable discovery“”

            … and this leads back to the thrust of the Courts lining through the words as written by Congress pertaining to “and discoveries” (as recently advanced by Knowles…

            See at least link to ipwatchdog.com

            That is, if you want to do more than snipe from the sidelines, Paul.

    3. 7.3

      Well, anon, good effort to provoke a discussion about what is “technical/eligible”, but unfortunately it didn’t get you very far, did it? The respondents preferred to go off into the weeds and argue about clarity of definition of the term “blue”, or about novelty and obviousness.

      At the EPO, unless the claim defines a combination of technical features that solves a technical problem, it ain’t valid. Changing the color of the squash racquets ball from black to blue: is it a “technical feature” and does the switch solve a “technical” problem. Bear in mind that Art 52 EPC declares that methods of doing business or playing a game, are ineligible, but only to the extent that the claim is directed to the method, as such.

      1. 7.3.1

        it didn’t get you very far, did it?

        Mileage may vary, and of course, it helps to have one’s expectations set at a suitably low level.

        But here, there is more mileage than what at first glance one may note.

        We see who is saying what (and also tellingly, who is not saying anything at all).

        And yes, MaxDrei, I would include YOU as being off into the weeds with your diverting to the EPC, but that was pretty much expected.

        What we also see is just how very wrong Marty is — and how Greg, in his efforts to “be polite” actually impedes Marty’s understanding rather than helps Marty understand.

        Of course, the hypo remains for discussion (for those who are truly “polite” or otherwise, as well as for those interested in being inte11ectually honest).

        Do I expect takers? Sure, in a perfect world, this would engender an interesting (even if brief) dialogue. But the respondents (and the typical 101 naysayers) have already said far more than they may have realized in what – and how – they have responded (or not).

  5. 6

    Eligibility depends on what is claimed, not all that is disclosed in the specification.

    Wait – so eligibility depends on the claim (or what is scrivener)…?

    That’s not the gift of “Gist/Abstract” provided by the Supreme Court. Did not the Court deign that they rather than the applicant would determine what “really” is being claimed (notwithstanding the actual claim)? Is this not the root of the Gordian Knot?

  6. 5

    “Instead, they recite a purportedly new arrangement of generic information that assists traders in processing information more quickly. E.g., ’999 patent at 2:39–41. We conclude that the claims are directed to the abstract idea of graphing bids and offers to assist a trader to make an order.” (page 15, emphasis added)

    Or let’s not even both with patent law.

    1. 5.1

      traders processing information

      Would those traders be perchance consuming that information?

      Night you should be the one digging my scheme the most. Gives a bright line, saves a bunch of patents….allows for intangible innovation in information processing except for the kind that the Constitution must protect (like for instance, processing trading information in one’s mind)…

      Scoreboard. Utility. Terrain. It’s like a mantra.

      1. 5.1.1

        Except you seem incapable of grasping the actual patent/innovation protection aspects of it all, Marty.

      2. 5.1.2

        Scoreboard. Utility. Terrain. It’s like a mantra.

        True some of these words get used like mantras. Sloganeering in place of though, I call it.

        Nevertheless, be fair. Those are not NightWriter‘s mantras.

        There is quite a lot of sloganeering in place of rational thought that goes on around here, but that is not NW’s sloganeering. Do not tar all of us in the anti-Mayo party with the a88hattery of just one of our number.

        1. 5.1.2.1

          The guy who won’t open his eyes or deal directly (much less in an honest manner) is the guy casting aspersions…

          What a Fn coward.

          Maybe that @$$hattery is you Greg, since you refuse to actually note that the “slogans” come from well-thought through and deeply developed conversations and provide a clear and concise touchpoint of the position.

  7. 4

    Ultimately, “This invention makes the trader faster and more efficient, not the computer. This is not a technical solution to a technical problem.” April 18, 2019 Slip Op. at 9 (emphasis in original).

    Oh gee. CAFC is drifting closer to distinguishing the utility of information used by persons to the utility of information used by machines.

    They must know nothing of the terrain

    1. 4.1

      celebrating a broken scoreboard shows that you do not understand why the scoreboard is broken.

    2. 4.2

      A plow makes a farmer faster and more efficient. I wonder if that means that a plow is not a technical solution to a technical problem?

      1. 4.2.1

        My plow is painted bright yellow so it’s easier to see when it’s dark outside. Can I haz patent now?

        1. 4.2.1.1

          Should I deny you for eligibility or patentability?

          Please tell me you recognize the difference (and the importance of the difference) between these very different Means.

  8. 3

    The court declined to address TTI’s constitutional challenges, which consisted of “a total of four sentences in each of its opening briefs” based on “a right to a jury under the Seventh Amendment, separation of powers under Article III, the Due Process Clause, and the Taking Clause.” “Such a conclusory assertion with no analysis to the underlying challenge is insufficient to preserve the issue for appeal.” Id.

    What’s an advocate to do? It’s not like a much more extensive and thorough source was unavailable.

  9. 2

    MM bruh, yesterday I sought out some rents. Am I bad now?

  10. 1

    Since the entire CBM statutory system automatically ends (sunsets) on Sept. 16 2020 for any more CBMs, the issues raised have limited interest and unlikely cert grants.

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