Friday, June 19, 2015

David Lumb on Michelle Lee's plan for the US Patent Office

Lumb's piece starts out poorly:

Tech media’s patent coverage typically centers on two rather unseemly arenas: patent trolls, who profit from frivolous copyright lawsuits against larger companies, and tech titans slugging it out in court over minor device similarities.

The four ways Lee plans to bring the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office into the 21st century:

* Expand Beyond Washington

For the first time in its 200-year history, the USPTO is expanding beyond Washington, D.C. to staff four satellite offices as regional resource centers.

* Reach Young inventors

To educate the next generation about the importance of intellectual property, the patent office sponsors a summer program for elementary school kids, during which they build simple devices and write patents for them.

* Improve Outdated Tech

Modernizing the USPTO's internal data systems is a priority, starting with establishing an integrated system to track patent progress from the minute an application is submitted. Revamping the internal system will also allow the USPTO to track distinct parts of a patent: Currently, the USPTO simply scans in patent forms and uploads them as PDFs. Updating the network will allow staff to search for patent data from within forms.

Hmmm, that was only three...


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