I am trying to determine if a patent attorney truly needs to know anything about computers or software at all to write a good software patent?

The way I see it, all software is a method or a system?

But methods and systems are fundamental to patents and well predate computers and software.

Hence any attorney should be able to draft a good software method or system patent?

2 Answers 2


Your argument is "generic" - according to its logic, any attorney should be able to draft a good patent about anything because statutory classes are fundamental to patents and predate the technology in question.

It's not the technology itself that a patent practitioner needs to have expertise in, but how to describe and claim inventions in that field while avoiding all known pitfalls and rabbit holes. Because the pitfalls and rabbit holes differ from field to field, expertise is required. Ideally, the practitioner should have studied many past cases in the field before getting down to work on drafting a particular application.


I am not a lawyer. "Software" patents are very often based on algorithms and mathematical equations are not patentable since they are considered abstract. In order to get software related patents granted, patent attorneys have found specific techniques and wordings that avoid common reasons for rejection. For this reason, I think, more than most technical areas, software related patent applications are best drafted and prosecuted by an attorney with specific experience in the field. This doesn't mean the attorney needs a technical degree in computer science, but I do suggest experience and success in drafting software patents is important.

  • But let's take Tinder's swipe patent. That has nothing to do with mathematics or some algorithm. It's purely a method or process? So If Tinder's swipe is my invention, do I not an attorney that specializes in software? Commented May 16 at 0:57
  • @BearBileFarmingisTorture I think so because "do it with a computer" type patents aren't allowed anymore. In any case, I'm only an inventor, not a lawyer. I do have some software related patents however, and I was amazed at some of the odd constructions my lawyer used to assure patentability.
    – Eric S
    Commented May 16 at 1:06

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