Thursday, June 07, 2018

Federal employees as inventors

In a 5 June 2018 post, printingimpressions discussed a patent to an employee of the U.S. Government Publishing Office:

U.S. Government Publishing Office (GPO) Senior Chemist Mary Kombolias, of Rockville, Md., has been granted a patent from the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office for inventing a new method of adhesive testing on secure documents produced by the GPO. Some of those include U.S. Passports and visa documents. Her invention will be used to help prevent forgery, counterfeiting, identity theft, unauthorized duplication, and immigration fraud.


Kombolias filed the non-provisional application for the patent in July 2015 and was issued US Patent number 9,927,337 on March 27, 2018. It is the first patent granted to a GPO employee since the World War II-era.


See the 2008 post on IPBiz:
Federal employees as inventors

Blast from the past: the Sibley tent patent litigation

In the 1989 Miami Vice episode "World of Trouble". one has a different take on government funded inventions.
Therein, the character Lawrence Fowler (played by Vincent Schiavelli) was a research scientist at Systex Corporation, a leading defense contractor, who received only $5000 for his invention of HAVOC, an acronym for High Voltage Vehicle Override Capacitor. Disgruntled, Fowler arranges for Salvatore "Sal" Lombard tp steal HAVOC from Systex in exchange for $200,000, so Fowler can set up his own research lab.

Sal is murdered in a hit intended for his father, played by Dennis Farina. The ending of the episode is similar to the ending of the 2008 movie "Gran Torino", with Farina going the way of Eastwood's Kowalski. The IP issues vanish from the episode.

The appearance of HAVOC was similar to that of a railgun. Note US patent on 1 April 1919, which was issued in July 1922 as patent no. 1,421,435 "Electric Apparatus for Propelling Projectiles"


Post a Comment

<< Home