Questions tagged [prior-art]

For questions relating to the USPTO rules related to prior art or what constitute prior art. For REQUESTS FOR PRIOR ART please use the [prior-art-request] tag.

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9 votes
1 answer
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Would software written in a country without software patents constitute prior art in the USA?

If I write an application here in Europe, where we don't have software patents, would an American company be able to apply for a US patent on a technique or algorithm used in the application? What ...
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10 votes
2 answers
915 views

Prior art for new treatment for anxiety disorder

Consider this WIPO: METHODS FOR TREATING SOCIAL DISORDERS and its current 3 entries at national levels: #US20110027765 -> Reviewer has requested some changes in the claims but it's going forward. UK: ...
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11 votes
3 answers
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How do we check if a patent already exists for our idea?

The idea in question is for a gardening tool.
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  • 111
12 votes
5 answers
2k views

Prior art for double-tap to zoom in a structured document / web browser

Apple has patented (US7864163) the behaviour in Mobile Safari whereby double-tapping zooms in just enough to fit on the screen the particular box of content that was tapped. A computer-implemented ...
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  • 411
4 votes
1 answer
711 views

How specific must prior art be to invalidate a patent?

Following on from #191, I looked at http://www.google.com/patents/US8082501. - "System and method for enabling users to interact in a virtual space" This was granted in Nov 2009 and claims: 1. A ...
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7 votes
2 answers
557 views

Prior art for Dual Air Drying Arrangement

Many people in the commercial vehicle industry use a "twin" air drying arrangement. Patent #us8118911, originally filed Nov. 10, 2006, and was granted on Feb 21, 2012, seems ridiculous to me....
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9 votes
1 answer
767 views

What is the layman's definition of 'prior art' in the US and other countries?

Every now and then I hear and read about 'prior art'. Is that a US specific thing or is a global thing regardless of where you are based in, if and when wanting to apply a patent. Any answers would ...
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  • 201
7 votes
2 answers
982 views

Does prior art need to cover all claims in a patent application in order to invalidate it?

If there are several Claims in a patent application, can prior art for one of them invalidate the entire patent application since all the other claims are dependent claims? Or does that just mean the ...
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  • 231
16 votes
2 answers
876 views

Can the non-obviousness of an invention be challenged if the difference to prior art is only the mathematical-statistical approach?

TL;DR Given a patent application describing a calculation using a maximum likelihood approach, and a piece of prior art that has the same goal but uses Monte Carlo simulation, is this sufficient to ...
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  • 261
9 votes
5 answers
1k views

Prior art for Vehicle Air Conditioner

Patent application #20120222429 claims: A vehicle air conditioner for a passenger compartment of a vehicle, comprising: a power source for driving the vehicle; a radiator provided ...
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34 votes
3 answers
1k views

What is the window for finding prior art on a patent application?

I know that patents are not part of the public purview until months or years after the patent application is filed. Once these patent applications are made public, for how long can I submit prior art (...
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  • 443
47 votes
10 answers
6k views

Microsoft have submitted a patent for a whack to silence a phone ringer. How similar does prior art have to be?

Microsoft has filed for a patent on a new technique that allow users of mobile devices to silence them by delivering a firm whack. From The Register: Patent application 20120231838, aka CONTROLLING ...
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18 votes
2 answers
878 views

Is use in foreign countries a bar to patentability?

If an invention is in use in a foreign country, but it is not patented in that country (or any other countries), and it is not the subject of a printed publication anywhere, could that invention be ...
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  • 751
20 votes
4 answers
810 views

Can a granted patent be deeded to the public?

Please note, I'm not speaking in the context of a land patent, I just could not think of a better word than deed. Let's say that: I have a concrete implementation of something that can be patented I ...
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  • 702
19 votes
4 answers
695 views

Is there a way to achieve protections similar to "Copyleft" under the patent system?

I have heard about "Copyleft" and was wondering if there is an equivalent for works which fall under Patent law rather than Copyright law. Specifically, is there a way I ensure that someone cannot ...
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  • 303
53 votes
8 answers
9k views

Can a YouTube video be submitted as prior art?

I'm trying to determine whether there is evidence that definitively confirms that a YouTube video can be submitted as prior art. If there is an example of one being used as the grounds for rejecting ...
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