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Aug 12, 2010
(I apologize in advance for the very not funny "well actually," but I work at an IP firm, too, though I'm not your lawyer.)
I have similar conversations with clients frequently, but inventors have to have conceived of some part of what's in the claims, not just be present when that conception happens. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit recently held that a patent is unenforceable if any inventor or other person involved with the patent application (the patent attorney or a company executive, for example) causes the wrong set of inventors to be listed, and they are found to have had "deceptive intent" in doing so. If those IBM managers' contributions aren't in the claims, those patents can never be enforced.
Aug 6, 2010
I work at an IP firm, and we regularly draft patent applications that have the words "the present application relates to...". PHB seems to understand the "present" application as a way to say "Present!" to the entire world, just coz he was in the general vicinity.
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Aug 5, 2010
Did Dilbert take his teeth out in the last panel?
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Aug 5, 2010
@Yoric: what you say might be correct. Company owns the rights to the IP and the patent, sure. But a PHB can's get included as one of the inventors. It has got to be the people that have 'worked' on the art that is getting patented - however small their contribution might be, but definitely not the guys that did the planning and management.
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Aug 5, 2010
Negative Space: That area between and under the pointy hair
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