Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Nonfunctional descriptive material discussed in Ex parte Sen

from Ex parte Sen

Thus, Appellants’ arguments urging patentability are predicated on nonfunctional descriptive material (i.e., rules stored within a memory). See Answer 16; See Ex parte Nehls, 88 USPQ2d 1883, 1887-90 (BPAI 2008) (precedential); Ex parte Curry, 84 USPQ2d 1272 (BPAI 2005) (informative) (Federal Circuit Appeal No. 2006-1003, aff’d, Rule 36 (June 12, 2006)); Ex parte Mathias, 84 USPQ2d 1276 (BPAI 2005) (informative), aff’d, 191 Fed. Appx. 959 (Fed. Cir. 2006); In re Ngai, 367 F.3d 1336, 1338 (Fed. Cir. 2004) Nonfunctional descriptive material cannot render nonobvious an invention that would have otherwise been obvious. In re Ngai, 367 F.3d at 1339.


“An intended use or purpose usually will not limit the scope of the claim because such statements usually do no more than define a context in which the invention operates.” Boehringer Ingelheim Vetmedica, Inc. v. Schering- Plough Corp., 320 F.3d 1339, 1345 (Fed. Cir. 2003). Although “[s]uch statements often . . . appear in the claim’s preamble,” In re Stencel, 828 F.2d 751, 754 (Fed. Cir. 1987), a statement of intended use or purpose can appear elsewhere in a claim. Id.

As to attorney argument

Although Appellants argue that the spam filter of Goodman is not
equivalent to the claimed alert monitor and does not provide a reason why they are not equivalent, mere arguments and conclusory statements that are unsupported by factual evidence are entitled to little probative value. See In re Geisler, 116 F.3d 1465, 1470 (Fed. Cir. 1997); see also In re De Blauwe, 736 F.2d 699, 705 (Fed. Cir. 1984).


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