Tuesday, June 12, 2018

Mobileeye loses appeal at CAFC of PTAB decision. Velocity vs. displacement.

MobileEye lost:

Mobileye Vision Technologies Ltd. (“Mobileye”) appeals
from the final written decision of the United States
Patent and Trademark Office Patent Trial and Appeal
Board (“the Board”) in an inter partes reexamination
affirming the examiner’s rejection of claims 1–7 of U.S.
Patent 7,113,867 (“the ’867 patent”) as obvious. See
iOnRoad, Ltd. v. Mobileye Techs. Ltd., No. 2015-7925,
2016 WL 949027, at *8 (P.T.A.B. Mar. 11, 2016) (“Decision”).
On appeal, Mobileye only challenges the Board’s
decision with respect to claim 6. Because the Board did
not err in its decision, we affirm.

The scope of the appeal was narrow:

Only claim 6 is before us. Mobileye argues that the
Board’s claim construction of the “substantially uniformly
approaches zero” limitation to “merely mean[] that the
obstacle is closing in on the vehicle, and that they will
intersect,” see Decision, 2016 WL 949027, at *7 (internal
quotation marks omitted), reads out the “substantially
uniformly” part of the limitation. It further contends that
the “substantially uniformly” language in the claim
describes how the lateral displacement approaches zero,
not just whether it approaches zero. Goodrich, as Mobileye
characterizes it, does not base its collision determination
on how the lateral displacement changes, because
it assumes a constant velocity. Mobileye argues that it
therefore does not teach the “substantially uniformly”
limitation in claim 6. Mobileye does not challenge the
Board’s findings with respect to the other prior art references.

Note the reasoning:

We agree with iOnRoad that the Board’s finding that
Goodrich teaches the “substantially uniformly approaches
zero” limitation is supported by substantial evidence.
Mobileye’s arguments depend on distinguishing claim 6 of
the ’867 patent, which teaches estimating a time to collision
using a lateral displacement, from Goodrich, which
teaches collision avoidance based on a lateral velocity.
Compare ’867 patent col. 8 ll. 12–21, col. 10 ll. 36–39, with
Goodrich col. 5 ll. 4–9. However, that is a distinction
without a difference


At oral argument, Mobileye argued that a key feature
of the ’867 patent is that it exclusively relies on the lateral
displacement to estimate the time of contact, which is
not directly related to the velocity of the obstacle. See
Oral Arg. at 11:55–12:33. This feature makes a difference,
Mobileye contended, because an object could be
moving at a constant velocity, but the changes in its
lateral displacement with respect to the vehicle could still
decrease or increase in a non-constant manner. See id.;
see also ’867 patent fig. 2B. But Goodrich’s collision
avoidance system does not depend on a constant velocity;
it depends on a constant “lateral velocity.” Goodrich col. 5
l. 6 (emphasis added). Therefore, the record does not
support Mobileye’s attempt to distinguish the prior art.


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