Federal Circuit: Low-level Security Measures are Abstract Ideas

In re Mohapatra (Fed. Cir. 2021)

 

The security code on your credit card seems pretty weak. Basically, it is a 3-4 digit number on opposite side of the card.  Mr. Sarada Mohapatra’s innovation was to create a more dynamic security code using an internet-based account management approach.

The Examiner rejected the claims as obvious, indefinite, and failing to claim patent eligible subject matter. On appeal, the PTAB reversed the obviousness conclusions, but maintained the rejection on the other grounds.  When Mohapatra raised the case to the Federal Circuit, the Solicitor’s office also dropped the indefiniteness challenge — leaving only the eligibility issue.

 

Mohapatra began his argument with a tradition-and-justice issue.  He pointed to many patents issued over the past 20 years relating to the same subject matter.  (note, Mohapatra represented himself pro se). The appellate court rejected this argument out-of-hand, concluding that “issuance of other patents in the same field of technology is not a ground for challenging the rejection of a subsequent application.” See In re Wertheim, 541 F.2d 257 (CCPA 1976) (“[I]t is immaterial in ex parte prosecution whether the same or similar claims have been allowed to others.”).

On the merits of Section 101, the court found that the claims are directed to the abstract idea of facilitating “an individual to alter the identification code associated with a financial instrument, such as a credit card, to protect against fraud.”  Mohapatra’s invention is limited in a number of ways and does not preempt all uses of this idea, but the court explained:

The fact that the claims are directed to a specific subset of that abstract idea—in this case, enabling a credit card user to change the security code on the card by using a web application—does not render the idea any less abstract.

Further, abstract-idea innovations may provide societal or personal benefits, but remain unpatentable: “The idea of changeable personal-identification numbers may be beneficial. But it is also abstract and therefore not patentable without more.”

At Alice Step 2, the court found no additional inventive concept beyond standard additions such as doing-it-on-the-web and storing the information on a computer.

[These functions] amount to no more than the implementation of an abstract idea on a computer operating in a conventional manner. That is not enough to convert an abstract idea into patent-eligible subject matter.

Rejection Affirmed.

= = = =

The following claim 18 was seen as representative for the appeal:

18. A method for countering credit card fraud arising from compromised credit card information by utilizing cardholder changeable card security code (CSC; also known as card verification value CVV2 or card verification data CVD or card identification code CID or card verification code CVC2) comprising:

a) A card issuer enabling change of card security code printed on the card, by

allowing cardholder to choose a new security code value as often as cardholder wishes,

facilitating recordation of chosen card security code by the cardholder by providing an internet connected card account management facility,

using most recently recorded card security code to verify subsequent transaction authorization requests without requiring any change in existing credit cards, terminals, equipment, computer software and communication protocols used in transaction authorization, and

denying transactions when card security code provided during authorization does not match card security code on record;

b) Cardholder changing card security code any time s/he deems it necessary to mitigate risk from possible card security code compromise, by

selecting a new security code value to be used as personal secret separate from the card without requiring assistance from any software program running on any device,

ensuring that selected new security code value is different from the printed code on first change and is different from last recorded code on subsequent changes,

recording the new card security code value using issuer provided internet connected card account management facility, and

remembering and providing the new card security code when prompted during subsequent credit card authorizations.

Published Appn. [PDF: CreditCardSecurityPatentApp]

PTAB Decision

= = = =

Question – Can you read through this specification and find anything patent eligible for Mr. Mohapatra that he could use on remand? 

63 thoughts on “Federal Circuit: Low-level Security Measures are Abstract Ideas

  1. 8

    OT, but innovation in the USA is falling. What a surprise when the Scotus, Congress, and the CAFC burn down the patent system.

    link to bloomberg.com

    1. 8.1

      When you scroll down far enough, it breaks down the scores into various components. The US is #2 in the patent activity component, and it appears to have earned its poor score based on especially bad components for education and “researcher concentration.” The rankings rank Denmark as #23 for patent activity, but place it substantially higher than the US (#6 overall). If we care what this metric says, it appears we should worry less about patents and more about university level STEM education.

      1. 8.1.1

        [W]e should worry less about patents and more about university level STEM education.

        We should definitely worry less about patent law than education policy if we care about creating a thriving innovation system. I do not want to give the impression that patent law is unimportant, but patent law < education policy ≈ tax law << immigration law <<< basic science research funding.

      2. 8.1.2

        All the evidence I’ve ever seen says that the only economies in history that have had great innovation engines did it with a patent system.

        The numbers are inaccurate for the USA. We are enjoying China and other countries filing patents in the USA that have made up for the fall of US patent applications by US inventors.

        And there are indications that the patent system is doing far worse than the numbers indicate. For example, patent value has fallen 80 percent since 2013. One indication of this is how IBM is now abandoning a far higher percentage of their patents rather than pay maintenance fees.

        I certainly agree that money for R&D is critical as is education.

        Just think how ridiculous it is that spending on fusion research has remained flat for 20 years at a pittance when it is so close to becoming a reality and provides a safe solution to generate electricity.

        It is also crippling that Trump made it harder for H1B visas. Yes, let’s not let the world’s geniuses into the country.

        But—patents—are as far as I know a necessary condition but certainly not sufficient.

        1. 8.1.2.1

          I agree that the visa angle was more than a bit sad, but I would also posit that Greg’s emphasis is exactly backwards.

          One need only recognize President Lincoln’s observation about fuel, and the use of fuel to spur interest in STEM.

          If you try to push STEM into a situation in which the fuel is instead starved, well then, WHY bother? is a legitimate question to ask, as well as “who benefits?”

          The uniquely American spirit does NOT actually need a widespread vigorous STEM program in order to provide a “pace horse” (an example) to which innovators will be encouraged to follow. Having a wide and vigorous STEM program without a beneficial reward system may well even reflect the (failed) central planning systems of the old Soviet Union.

        2. 8.1.2.2

          “Just think how ridiculous it is that spending on fusion research has remained flat for 20 years at a pittance when it is so close to becoming a reality and provides a safe solution to generate electricity.”

          To be fair in that field if people had better proposals then it’d be getting more money. Most of the proposals are largely just more of the same ol failed stuff with shinier new parts. Thankfully some of the mat sci is getting so amazing nowadays that the shiny new parts are actually getting better.

          “It is also crippling that Trump made it harder for H1B visas. Yes, let’s not let the world’s geniuses into the country.”

          Replacing everyday technical staff with 3rd worlders, literally trained by the people they’re replacing, and working for lower wages than, is not “let’s not let the world’s geniuses into the country”. The geniuses could still come in as usual with a totally different type of immigrant visa etc. Don’t let the H1B visa lobby skew your view, what it was supposed to do, and what it was actually doing irl are two wildly different things.

          1. 8.1.2.2.1

            There is a H1B visa lobby…?

            1. 8.1.2.2.1.1

              Most def. It’s huge money to be able to hire 3rd worlders at 1/3 or 1/2 the cost for a hundred some workers in your company over 10 years. Call it 100 workers at your megacorp getting replaced, you save a low side of 25k on each worker (upwards of 50-80k saved each in some instances). That’s a cool 2.5+ milly you just made in one year by replacing an american worker(s). Pay a few K street lobbyists 1 milly or less per year to go bug politicians telling them about muh gennioooses unfairly scriminated against by muh whyte sypremacist nea nazy restrictionists n make bank bro. Nobody will care to look and see that you’re not paying these supar genius individuals 200k+ and you are in fact paying them 60-80k.

              Don’t forget to pay your leftist bros in the media to convince NWPA et al. that he’s like totally slipping in the innovation rankings and if only you can import these supar genooises then your innovation ranking (based on “density of researcherslol” etc) will tots increase!

              1. 8.1.2.2.1.1.1

                There is definitely this aspect of it 6.

              1. 8.1.2.2.1.2.1

                Thanks 6 – that first link certainly appears to show that there is an (unhealthy) amount of spin from Big Corp.

                I am not certain whether all of the measures of the clamped down approach were either necessary or beneficial, but certainly, the measure that would prevent a wage disparity effect is one that most everyone should recognize as being reasonable.

                1. “the measure that would prevent a wage disparity effect is one that most everyone should recognize as being reasonable.”

                  That’s literally almost the only reason the H1B’s exist right now bro. There’s very few instances of it actually being used for the supposed old school purpose of actually getting an expert with expertise that just isn’t available, practically at all, at any price, in the US. In the US these days you can find all the expertise you need, for a price. It’s that high price that companies don’t want to pay.

  2. 7

    The Examiner’s Final 103 Rejection is awful, but it is more noteworthy for how European it reads. It points out the very high level similarities between the claimed invention and the prior art, glosses over most of the details of the claim, and abruptly concludes that one difference between the claim and the prior art is obvious without so much as a secondary reference. I honestly have never understood the arguments here about “problem-solution” vs. “obviousness” because whatever difference there is in those analyses, that difference is likely dwarfed by the ability of European examiners to ignore inconvenient limitations.

    1. 7.1

      Ben, you caught my interest with your categorization of the 103 objection as both “awful” and European-like. But at 3.1 you have no hesitation about condemning the claimed subject matter as “plain-as-day obvious”.

      My hunch is that the USPTO Examiner took the same view, and acted accordingly.

      Following on from that, there are two points I can make about obviousness objections on the European mainland, which might explain why they strike you as so alien.

      First, under civil law, at the EPO, the Examiner is credited with the technical knowledge of the skilled person, so can make rebuttable statements as to that knowledge when framing the objections. If rebuttal is possible, Applicant is of course free , as vigorously as the case demands, indignantly to rebut and the Examiner is free to admit that he or she “stands corrected”.

      Second, the EPC (Art. 52) requires as a condition of patentability that the claimed subject matter exhibit an “inventive step”. The burden rests with Applicants, to meet the conditions of patentability.

      Believe me, EPO Examiners are not “ignoring” limitations in the claim. Instead, they are assessing them for what they are worth under the Problem/Solution methodology of enquiry into the presence (or not) of an inventive step.

      I looked for an EPO patent family member here but found none. So how come the USPTO Examiner adopted a “European” approach. Is it just this one Examiner, or are they all now infected with European thinking?

      Finally, and self-evidently, claims to “plain-as-day obvious” subject matter must be prevented from going to issue, one way or another. But would it not be far more satisfying, all round, if Patent Offices (and courts) were to reject “plain-as-day obvious” claims under the available obviousness provisions rather than with an arm-waving dismissal of eligibility?

      1. 7.1.1

        Max: From your comments, it occurs to me that the EPO “inventive step” sounds akin to the generally-disfavored Jepson claiming format.

        Thoughts?

        1. 7.1.1.1

          Thoughts? Well, the EPC defines “inventive” as “not obvious” ie its antonym. So one might think that there is no difference. And the EPC defines the task of the EPO as to grant patents and the task of an Examiner to make sure all requirements of patentability are met. BUT: psychologically, checking that an inventive step is present is different from checking that the claim is not obvious, wouldn’t you say? Which party bears the burden of persuasion. You know, that sort of thing.

          The default form of claim at the EPO is its “2-part form”, the two parts being separated by the words “characterized in that”. It is a mistake though to suppose that a Jepson claim and a c-i-t claim are the same. They aren’t. Why that then? Because a c-i-t claim is an artefact of the EPO’s strictly structured TSM analysis of obviousness, which ALWAYS walks through exactly the same sequence of steps, giving little or no room for Examiners to wander off the path and Applicants a very good idea what will pass muster at the EPO and what will not.

          Is that enough to be going on with?

          1. 7.1.1.1.1

            That’s great Max — thanks.

        2. 7.1.1.2

          Max: From your comments, it occurs to me that the EPO “inventive step” sounds akin to the generally-disfavored Jepson claiming format.

          I think one of the benefits of the Alice test is that it forces people to perform a Jepson-style analysis when they wouldn’t otherwise.

          If I’m in an interview and ask “What feature makes this claim non-obvious?” the only response I ever get is “claim as a whole.” The caselaw rarely finds patent worthiness in a “claim as a whole” situation, as the vast majority of the time arranging old elements results in their standard results, and KSR forecloses the patentability of those claims (“When a patent “simply arranges old elements with each performing the same function it had been known to perform” and yields no more than one would expect from such an arrangement, the combination is obvious.”).

          On the other hand, if I tell the person I am thinking about making a 101 rejection, I often get analysis as to what parts of the claim differ from conventional actions and there can be focus on whether the improvement is being properly claimed or is something worthy of protection.

          As a practical matter, if you are prosecuting and you can’t articulate a manner in which you’ve taught the art how to do a concrete thing in order to improve the art, you really have no business accepting a notice of allowance. The law may give it to you, and it may be presumed valid, but at some point someone is going to come along and force someone to articulate it, and a lot of times there isn’t a good answer.

          Like here, its unquestionable that there’s any number of password systems that allow the user to change the password and authenticate based upon the password being remembered, inputted, and valid. Either there was a technological problem in applying that technique to credit card security numbers, or there wasn’t. If there was, your specification better have that technological teaching or you’ll fall to a 112a attack. If there wasn’t, you better have an answer as to why the claim isn’t an obvious application of a known technique or an abstract idea of applying the technique to a different context. “Claim as a whole” isn’t going to help you there.

          1. 7.1.1.2.1

            Your (repeated) conflation of the various different aspects of patent law show that you understand precious little about each aspect.

            You really need to get into a different line of work, Examiner Random.

      2. 7.1.2

        “So how come the USPTO Examiner adopted a “European” approach. Is it just this one Examiner, or are they all now infected with European thinking?”

        I suspect that rather than being infected with “European thinking”, this examiner has a bad case of indolence.

        In any case, this examiner did not act “accordingly” because their reviewing body was PTAB rather than its EPO equivalent. The examiner’s approach here failed. And the obviousness rejection here should not have failed.

        “Believe me, EPO Examiners are not “ignoring” limitations in the claim. Instead, they are assessing them for what they are worth under the Problem/Solution methodology of enquiry into the presence (or not) of an inventive step.”

        That sounds very much like a confirmation that EPO examiners are allowed to ignore bits from the claim.

        That’s great and all, you guys “do you.” I just don’t understand why anyone in their right mind would compare US examination and EPO examination. Not only do we get less time, we don’t get to blow off parts of the claim. I don’t know how often I’ve had to build a rejection/search around a silly, non-technical limitation. If the rules of the game are not the same, the work product isn’t really comparable.

        1. 7.1.2.1

          Absolutely. The Rules are different, the respective work product ought not to be compared.

          Still and all, it would be nice if different jurisdictions, given the same claim and the same prior art, could come to more or less the same ultimate conclusion on obviousness. I think that’s do-able. Where there’s a will (amongst the judges) there’s a way.

          1. 7.1.2.1.1

            S
            I
            G
            H

            An absolutely wrong approach in WANTING judges to be a driver on reaching some type of desired Ends.

            I bet that you don’t even realize just how bad the animus that you have really is, MaxDrei. While you “politely” ‘agree,’ your follow-on caveat shows a level of disrespect that no amount of “polite words” can hide.

            I am (yet again), reminded of the picture of two people facing each other with fake “polite masks,” while each holds a dagger behind their backs.

            Much better to be openly direct and even confrontational than to suffer the illusion of fake politeness.

          2. 7.1.2.1.2

            “Still and all, it would be nice if different jurisdictions, given the same claim and the same prior art, could come to more or less the same ultimate conclusion on obviousness.”

            Why? Do you also want the winner of the shot put to be the same as the winner of the javelin? Different games will have different outcomes. If you want similar outcomes, you should want the games to conform rather than the results to conform.

            1. 7.1.2.1.2.1

              Ben you ask why, with the identical claim and the identical prior art I want the outcome of the obviousness enquiry to be the same as one moves from jurisdiction to jurisdiction.

              My answer is that I want the patent system to be accessible not just to business people, but also to intelligent engineers and scientists, who know what the simple word “obvious” means. Reducing patent law to an arcane enquiry that is comprehensible only to specialist attorneys (and USPTO Examiners) endangers acceptance of the patent system amongst the general public.

              Martin Luther translated the Bible into German, so the ordinary people could understand its teachings. He fought against a huge body of opinion that thought the Bible should be available only in Latin. I have the feeling that many patent lawyers would agree with the prevailing opinion.

              What is obvious depends on the claim, the prior art and the notional skilled person. If the claim is the same and the art is the same, and if the person of ordinary skill in the art does not vary from jurisdiction to jurisdiction, then the outcome of the obviousness enquiry ought to be the same as one moves from jurisdiction to jurisdiction.

              A patent issued by the EPO is effective in the 38 sovereign Member States of the EPC. Obvious enquiries are conducted by national courts using their own national procedures. Sometimes they issue obviousness decisions that conflict. But that is when their respective fact-finding processes result in different prior art facts. When the facts change, so can the outcome.

              1. 7.1.2.1.2.1.1

                and the notional skilled person. If the claim is the same and the art is the same, and if the person of ordinary skill in the art does not vary from jurisdiction to jurisdiction,

                How many times have we engaged on the FACT that the Sovereigns have chosen differently?

              2. 7.1.2.1.2.1.2

                “What is obvious depends on the claim, the prior art and the notional skilled person.”

                Except we just established that this is not strictly true as it depends on the analysis used to determine obviousness.

                I see why in an ideal world one might want to have a consistent obviousness standard across jurisdictions, but I don’t see why it’s a reasonable expectation given the disparate analyses. Further, I suspect that you’d rather keep your analysis than submit to the US’s analysis which, while perfectly reasonable, would reveal a rather low valuation of the goal of consistent obviousness results.

                “My answer is that I want the patent system to be accessible not just to business people, but also to intelligent engineers and scientists, who know what the simple word “obvious” means. Reducing patent law to an arcane enquiry that is comprehensible only to specialist attorneys (and USPTO Examiners) endangers acceptance of the patent system amongst the general public.”

                Then, at least in the US, it is far, far too late.

                1. Bit like the UK then, arcane, accumulated dross, up until 1978, when we made a whole new start, with the brand spanking sparkling new European Patent Convention (a fusion of British common law and German civil law) which, by the way, has ever since formed the benchmark for patent reform all over the world.

                  Except in the USA. Of course..

                2. Is that that respect of Sovereign choice coming through again for you, MaxDrei?

                  (As well as a conflation of why the US is no longer the Gold standard? – hint it was not our Sovereign’s choice to consistently apply the notion of the legal fictional person against all prior art calculations that changed and dropped the US from its place of best protection for innovation).

  3. 6

    “Can you read through this specification and find anything patent eligible”

    You know, normally I love challenges, but I have to say, in this instance he didn’t give us much to work with? – and I assume his claim on appeal has a little more meat than the application you pointed to?

    1. 6.1

      The application Dennis references is the application for the claims on appeal.

  4. 5

    Ugh. When will Congress or SCOTUS act?

    “The fact that the claims are directed to a specific subset of that abstract idea—in this case, enabling a credit card user to change the security code on the card by using a web application—does not render the idea any less abstract.”

    There is literally no invention for which the same thing cannot be said.

    1. 5.1

      +1 NM.

  5. 4

    [0026] FIG. 3 illustrates a card-not-present transaction which embodies present invention. It shows an exemplary web form 300 which is usually the final step of an ecommerce site’s checkout process where payment details are submitted. Cardholder changeable CVV2 adds the note block 302 informing the cardholders to use secret CVV2 if changed from one printed on the card. Help information link 304 on CVV2 commonly found on many ecommerce sites would be similarly enhanced. Thus, the changes for this embodiment to the ecommerce sites are small, simple, low-risk changes to static help content.

    Adding an additional data field to enhance functionality

  6. 3

    Mr. Mohapatra never had a chance.

    Never. A. Chance.

    Yet one more among so very many CAFC jurisIMprudent decisions.

    While his claims could have been better written; this is nonetheless an important, valuable . . . and claims-eligible invention.

    And it ain’t close.

    1. 3.1

      There is no invention here. It is plain-as-day obvious . Lots of prior art about how to change PINs, and lots of prior art about varying CVVs to improve credit card security. The “inventor” deserves no reward as he has done nothing but contribute to the problem of Alice that burdens actual inventors.

      1. 3.1.1

        Ben: “It is plain-as-day obvious.”

        Then 103 the claims.

        1. 3.1.1.1

          I would have and my rejection would’ve been upheld.

          Look, if you’re going to unthinkingly accept the decisions of a third party, you’d do better than to pick the PTO in it’s current form to be that third party. In addition to the limited time examiners get, and the simple fact that some examiners are awful and will make mistakes, the PTO is structured such that if the examiner makes this sort of mistake, there is no “redo” where the mistake gets fixed. It just gets allowed. Blind trust in the PTO is like believing in Santa. It may be acceptable early on, but you need to grow out of it eventually.

          1. 3.1.1.1.1

            Lol – instead of the “blind trust,” what we ALL should be pushing for is better examination.

    2. 3.2

      Step 1: have a password
      Step 2: change your password
      Step 3: from now on, use your new password

      This is an important and valuable invention? The idea of changing a password?

      1. 3.2.1

        id; were such claims-gisting permitted, precious few (if any) innovations would qualify for a patent.

        Everything can be boiled down . . . to nothing.

        1. 3.2.1.1

          “Gristing.” That’s literally what the claim says. Oh,
          I left out “on the Internet.” Is that what makes it an invention? What element of the recited claim was non-obvious to you personally, based solely on your knowledge as of the priority date?

          1. 3.2.1.1.1

            “What element of the recited claim was non-obvious to you personally, based solely on your knowledge as of the priority date?”

            Individually, none of the elements are non-obvious . . . but . . . since obviousness is determined by analyzing the claim as a whole . . . the claims are not obvious.

            And as Ben points out @7, the 103 rejection was awful.

            1. 3.2.1.1.1.1

              Individually, none of the elements are non-obvious . . . but . . . since obviousness is determined by analyzing the claim as a whole . . . the claims are not obvious.

              Ugh this is such terrible thinking. Articulate a reason as to why “none of the elements are non-obvious” leads to “but the claim as a whole is non-obvious” in this situation. Such lazy analysis.

              And as Ben points out @7, the 103 rejection was awful.

              I’m sure the clients will appreciate that fact when they commit resources based on their patent rights and find out that the two strongest arguments in their favor are “presumption of validity” and “claim as a whole.” If you’re at any point prior to the middle of an infringement trial the question of whether a compelling argument of obviousness HAS been made is of far less import than the question of whether a compelling argument CAN be made.

              Let me rearticulate how I read as what insignificant dallasite said: Assuming that changing your password is a technique that is unquestionably ubiquitous in the the art of computers, and nobody debates that credit card security numbers previously existed, why is application of a known technique to a known device to yield predictable results (MPEP 2143(I)(D)) not applicable to render the “claim as a whole” obvious?

              See KSR – The principles underlying these cases are instructive when the question is whether a patent claiming the combination of elements of prior art is obvious…if a technique has been used to improve one device, and a person of ordinary skill in the art would recognize that it would improve similar devices in the same way, using the technique is obvious unless its actual application is beyond his or her skill.

              1. 3.2.1.1.1.1.1

                Unless…

                You do realize that those types (yes, plural) are one of the reasons why trying to treat 103 prior art as merely a collection of 102 prior art is legally fallacious, right?

                Maybe you should do more than merely cut N paste other people’s arguments and actually try to understand the law that generates those arguments…

  7. 2

    (note, Mohapatra represented himself pro se).

    Pretty much seals the deal

    1. 2.1

      Monkey Dance $$$$

      1. 2.1.1

        The web crawl indicates that this is actually your tenth instance of attempting the same game (counting your ‘three-peat’ on one thread as one attempt).

        Do you realize that you are proving my points about you with these choices of yours?

        1. 2.1.1.1

          Yes! More monkey dance. $$$$

          1. 2.1.1.1.1

            Thanks for agreeing with me. And thanks for choosing to continue to attempt your game playing, as I make bucks off of your choices, while getting to see you be frustrated time and time and time again and again and again.

            1. 2.1.1.1.1.1

              We make more!!! Thanks $$$

              1. 2.1.1.1.1.1.1

                lol – the evolution of your memes…. a shade of variance, then plaster that same shade across multiple posts…

                z
                z
                z
                z
                z
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                z
                z
                z
                z
                z
                z
                z
                z
                z
                z
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                z

              2. 2.1.1.1.1.1.2

                (George Carlin would be impressed that multiple z’s in one horizontal line makes the cens0rsh1p filter)

                If there was ever a contrast between blind filters and what filters (supposedly) were meant to provide, my pal Shifty is the epitome of that disconnect.

              3. 2.1.1.1.1.1.3

                You see what he tried there?

                [and I’m not addressing him but he’ll still do the Monkey Dance. We know, it’s sad.

                1. not addressing him

                  misses – STILL:
                  100% to or about me
                  0% on target to the patent law article or discussions thereof

                  Your game is just not working for you. It’s not showing what you think it shows.

                2. To whom is your question addressed?

                  About whom is your question addressed?

                  Talking about an inability to ‘help it,’ your choices continue to have that “perfect” 100/0 ‘quality.’

                  (that’s not a good thing for you – but it is making bank for me)

  8. 1

    Ineligible? Goodness no. Obvious? Probably.

    More trash from SV friends at the CAFC.

    Just incredible that our Circuit Court judges would write things like the below as being an abstract idea, i.e., as discussed in Alice something that has long been well-known. Web applications are only since the early 1990’s. Could even still be a patent to something like this that is not expired.

    “The fact that the claims are directed to a specific subset of that abstract idea—in this case, enabling a credit card user to change the security code on the card by using a web application—does not render the idea any less abstract.”

    1. 1.1

      Abstract ideas and Alice shouldn’t exist, but the way to cabin Alice is to only include abstractions that are actually very old and concise. Things that are verifiably well-known and abstractions.

      Any abstract idea that includes the terms “credit card” and “web application” should not be a valid abstract idea.

      I feel like I am talking gobbledygook inside Alice’s rabbit hole.

      1. 1.1.1

        “I feel like I am talking gobbledygook inside Alice’s rabbit hole.”

        As do we all, Night.

        As do we all.

        1. 1.1.1.1

          “As do we all.”

          Not I. I feel like we’re seeing the inevitable consequences of a broken system.

          Cheers.

      2. 1.1.2

        Abstract ideas and Alice shouldn’t exist, but the way to cabin Alice is to only include abstractions that are actually very old and concise. Things that are verifiably well-known and abstractions.

        Good point. A lot of the more pernicious implications of Alice would evaporate if it were turned merely into a quick and easy way to kill off super obvious (and only super—incontestably—obvious) claims at the 12(b) stage. This would still be inferior to letting §112 & §103 do their own work instead of crowding them together into §101, but I would not want to make the perfect to be the enemy of the good. Your proposal, NW, would be an improvement on the status quo.

        1. 1.1.2.1

          Not only inferior, but it adds “weight” to the improper obfuscation of the different sections of the law.

        2. 1.1.2.2

          I think this is an area that might get cert or one where the CAFC might be convinced to cabin Alice in this way.

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