Monday, April 09, 2018

Baker v. Microsoft. CAFC finds clear and unmistakable disavowal of relevant claim scope

Pro se appellant-plaintiff RICHARD J. BAKER lost his appeal
against Microsoft at the CAFC.

There was an issue of disavowal, via amendment, of claim scope:

In his remarks accompanying the proposed amendments,
Mr. Baker argued that Mann did not anticipate
the amended claims because “[n]owhere in Mann is there
a teaching that the computer system is located remotely
from the teaching station as is emphasized in Applicant’s
disclosure.” J.A. 99. Mr. Baker further argued that
“[t]ransmittance to a separate location for analysis and
feedback is critical in Applicant’s invention, because the
programming can be efficiently performed at the remote
computer station.” Id.
Mr. Baker made these amendments to distinguish the
’001 Patent over Mann. We agree with the district court
that Mr. Baker clearly and unmistakably disavowed any
portion of his claim scope which combines the claimed
features of the ’001 Patent’s remote computers into a
single location or a single computer-like device, as disclosed
in Mann.
Lastly, for the reasons discussed by the district court,
we agree that the word “remote” in claim 18 carries the
same meaning as it conveys in claims 1 and 10. See
Baker, 2017 WL 44517, at *4.

The CAFC observed:

We agree that Appellees’ accused products do not
literally infringe the ’001 Patent. Rather than incorporating
two remote, computer-like devices (plus a peripheral
camera) as required by the claims, we observe—and Mr.
Baker appears to concede1—that the accused products
only employ a single game console or personal computer
in conjunction with a peripheral camera. As explained,
Mr. Baker clearly and unmistakably disclaimed such a
system during prosecution. Thus, we agree with the
district court’s conclusion that the accused products do
not literally infringe each limitation of claim 1, 10, or 18
of the ’001 Patent. See Advanced Steel Recovery, LLC v.
X-Body Equip., Inc., 808 F.3d 1313, 1319 (Fed. Cir. 2015);
Southwall Techs., Inc. v. Cardinal IG Co., 54 F.3d 1570,
1575 (Fed. Cir. 1995) (“To establish literal infringement,
every limitation set forth in a claim must be found in an
accused product, exactly.”).

The district court also concluded that prosecution
history estoppel barred Mr. Baker from pursuing his
infringement claim under the doctrine of equivalents. See
Baker, 2017 WL 44517, at *7–8. For the same reasons
discussed in the district court’s order, we agree.


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