- To infringe a claim a product must contain all of the elements of that claim. In a method claim that would mean performing all of the steps. In a system claim it would require possess all elements with those elements related to each other as defined in the claim.
I'm presuming this means that, for example, by creating a system (or method) that satisfies every aspect, except one, of a system (or method) outlined in a claim, then that new system/method is outside the scope of the patent claim (that is, it does not infringe upon the patent claim)? If this presumption is correct, then is there a requirement as to how "different" the aforementioned single different aspect must be? I know that the idea of a step being "inventive" or "non-obvious" exists in patent law; must this single different aspect also satisfy the requirement of being "non-obvious" or "inventive"? Or is it simply enough that the aspect/step be strictly different from that presented in the patent, even though it might not be "inventive"?
For a random example, imagine that a technology/device patent claim for generating some image provides a method consisting of 5 steps. The first step is that the light used in generating said image must have a power of around 8100 to 8500 (just random, unitless numbers). Let's say I then wish to manufacture a device that satisfies the other 4 steps of the method, but instead of using light of around 8100 to 8500 energy to generate the image, my device uses light of around 9000 energy. Am I infringing the patent/claim in this case?
And I think the aforementioned example suggests another interesting question: Assuming that the modified invention does not infringe the patent, then does that mean that it is itself patentable? I can't see how this would be true, since the modified invention does not include a "non-obvious" step; so, in such a case, even though it doesn't infringe upon the patent, it at the same time does not satisfy the requirements to be patented.
I would greatly appreciate it if people would please take the time to clarify this.