Becoming a master inventor
How this regular programmer became a 'Master Inventor' at IBM
U.S. Patent No. 7.535.367, Airplane lavatory reservation system, which evokes memories of IBM's 6,329,919.
UPDATE on March 16, 2015:
A reader sent an inquiry " What do you think of the novelty and value of the patent? "
**As background, let's start with the first sentence of the article by Julie Bort: -- IBM is awfully proud of its patent portfolio. --
One wonders "how proud" one might be of the patent on -- Airplane lavatory reservation system --.
Kimberly Moore, prior to being a judge on the Federal Circuit, wrote: --For example, issued U.S. patents have claimed an animal toy which includes a tree branch, n14 a face mask to prevent a person from eating, n15 a bird diaper, n16 an apparatus for simulating a "high five," n17 an air [p. 1525] conditioning unit for a shoe (to keep one's feet cool), n18 a method of swinging on a swing, n19 an electronic toilet queue, n20 a dust cover for a dog, n21 and a method of exercising a cat by using a laser pointer (like a flashlight) on the floor and moving the beam of light so the cat chases it. n22 -- from "Worthless Patents," 20 Berkeley Tech. L.J. 1521, with footnote 20 stating: U.S. Patent No. 6,329,919 (filed Aug. 14, 2000). Even large corporations like IBM, which filed this patent, seek patents with marginal economic value and social utility.
LBE had written in 88 JPTOS 1068 : -- Thus, the absence of patent quality at the Patent Office is demonstrated by enumeration of a few examples. A favorite poster child has been the patent to Smucker with claims covering a sealed crustless peanut butter and jelly sandwich (US 6,004,59621). Other favorites are a method of swinging on a swing (U.S. 6,368,227 to a child of a patent lawyer), and an electronic toilet queue (U.S. 6,329,919 to IBM). n22
As an alternative approach, the present author gives an example of a good patent, which enabled an individual inventor to bring an invention of some utility to society.
Charles Miner Spencer received U.S. Patent No. 27,393 for a repeating rifle in March 6, 1860. n23 The rifles were favorably tested by both the U.S. Army and Navy in 1861 and 1862. Spencer sold his interests in the patent to investors in return for a royalty based on every rifle sold. One of the directors of the company, Charles Cheney, was a friend of Secretary of the Navy Welles and an order for 700 rifles was obtained; there were other orders. --
**Note that the second toilet queue patent (US '367 to inventor Ratnaker) cites the first toilet queue patent (US '919, to inventors Boies et al., not including Ratnaker). The '919 has been cited in several patents, including US 8,364,546, titled Restroom convenience center.
**Returning to US 8,489,690 (over which the 20130267264 application received an obviousness-type double-patenting rejection), one notes that the initial application (related to US '690) received a final rejection, an RCE was filed, and the RCE got a final rejection.
The second final action included a rejection for obviousness, in part over 7,395,077 to Wilson, the abstract for which states:
Apparatus and method of controlling delivery of text messages to a subscriber (2, 9, 10) in a telecommunications services apparatus, the method comprising the steps of the subscriber making a selection as to a mode of delivery that the subscriber requires for one of (i) a future text message and (ii) a category of future text messages, for example delivery by fax or e-mail, the subscriber's requested selection being implemented by a message processing means (3) in the form of an SMS router which is part of the home network (B) with which the subscriber's mobile telephone is normally associated, the arrangement being such that any text messages intended by the sender (1) to be delivered to the said subscriber, as intended receiver thereof, are directed to the message processing means which then implements the delivery mode previously selected by the subscriber (2, 9, 10).
Outside counsel Jack Friedman of the Schmeiser law firm in Latham, NY presented arguments of what Wilson did not teach, and amended claims were allowed. US Patent 8,930,479 has broader claims than did US '690.
In the two cases, obviousness, not novelty, was at issue. IPBiz makes no comment on commercial value.
As to the text by Julie Bort
Another is for adding a teleconference caller to a group instant messaging chat (U.S. No. 2013-12-10 8605882)
One might think the correct application of Abuelsaad relates to published US application 20130308764, titled ADDING A TELECONFERENCE CALLER TO A GROUP INSTANT MESSAGING CHAT, filed May 18, 2012 and published November 21, 2013 . This case went to allowance without a published Office Action. The corresponding patent number is 8,605,882 .
**See also http://www.hillbillytimes.com/2015/03/15/how-this-regular-programmer-became-a-master-inventor-at-ibm-and-how-you-can-follow-in-her-footsteps-ibm/