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Old Sep 26, 2007, 09:33 PM   #1
ghall
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How To Get A Patent?

Okay, so I've been working on what I think is a revolutionary way to interact with computers using a GUI, and I would like to patent it, and possibly market it. How would I go about doing this?
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Old Sep 26, 2007, 09:36 PM   #2
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Oh boy. Have fun my friend

I'm actually in Intellectual Property in law school right now, and studying Patents. Hopefully your patent doesn't involve litigation at some point...patent litigation usually costs in the 7 figure range...

Here's a good start for you
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Old Sep 26, 2007, 10:05 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by ghall View Post
Okay, so I've been working on what I think is a revolutionary way to interact with computers using a GUI, and I would like to patent it, and possibly market it. How would I go about doing this?
It's not an easy process.

I know a man who gets hired by patent lawyers to disprove patents. I once asked him how I could get a patent (he has over 20 patents issued and pending). He responded saying that it costs a lot of money and and lot of time. And the most important thing is that someone may already have a patent on it.
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Old Sep 26, 2007, 10:07 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by MLeepson View Post
It's not an easy process.

I know a man who gets hired by patent lawyers to disprove patents. I once asked him how I could get a patent (he has over 20 patents issued and pending). He responded saying that it costs a lot of money and and lot of time. And the most important thing is that someone may already have a patent on it.
Is there some way I can check existing patents, so I don't end up wasting my time and money?
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Old Sep 26, 2007, 10:25 PM   #5
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Is there some way I can check existing patents, so I don't end up wasting my time and money?
Pretty much any patent ever in the US is in the patent database...so have fun
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Old Sep 26, 2007, 10:35 PM   #6
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I literally just got back from a speech on patents 15 minutes ago. I only went for free pizza and extra credit in one of my classes, but I paid attention, I promise! So I can give you a little background:

Your idea has to be novel. Meaning it can never, ever have been thought of before. If some guy 10 years ago wrote your very idea down in a lab notebook but never patented it and never spoke of it again, no patent for you, since the idea isn't new. If it's patented in some country halfway around the world, too bad. You'll want a patent lawyer, so save your money, they aint cheap. But if you want to get started to see if someone else has patented it, http://www.google.com/patents What doesn't Google search for these days?
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Old Sep 27, 2007, 01:06 AM   #7
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If you're a reader of Techdirt.com, you'll know and understand how many ridiculous patents are given out.

Ideally, you need a fantastic new idea to get a patent, but if it involves tech stuff, it's usually done rather poorly.
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Old Sep 27, 2007, 11:25 AM   #8
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The major cost is the patent attorney. For a software patent of moderate complexity, anywhere from $5,000 to $25,000. (I've worked for companies that do this)

Here's some info. http://www.ipwatchdog.com/patent_cost.html
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Old Sep 27, 2007, 11:30 AM   #9
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Quote:
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The major cost is the patent attorney. For a software patent of moderate complexity, anywhere from $5,000 to $25,000. (I've worked for companies that do this)

Here's some info. http://www.ipwatchdog.com/patent_cost.html
Wow.

So, if I sold my idea to a large company, would I have to patent it first? I might just work on my design for a while then sell it off to a company.
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Old Sep 27, 2007, 11:46 AM   #10
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Wow.

So, if I sold my idea to a large company, would I have to patent it first?
No you don't have to. But a (good) idea for which you have a patent is more easily valued. My personal feelings on this aside - this whole patent thing is big business. I.P. is valued, it is an asset, and goes on a company balance sheet. Then there's licensing. Companies can make big $ out of it all. But only big companies can really play this game.

It's an old book, but "Rembrandts in the Attic" talks about all this.
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Old Sep 27, 2007, 11:53 AM   #11
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Quote:
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No you don't have to. But a (good) idea for which you have a patent is more easily valued. My personal feelings on this aside - this whole patent thing is big business. I.P. is valued, it is an asset, and goes on a company balance sheet. Then there's licensing. Companies can make big $ out of it all. But only big companies can really play this game.

It's an old book, but "Rembrandts in the Attic" talks about all this.
Well, I don't really care about making money, I just want my idea out there, for people to use. I'd develop it myself, but I don't have the knowledge or resources.
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Old Sep 27, 2007, 12:50 PM   #12
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Well, I don't really care about making money, I just want my idea out there, for people to use. I'd develop it myself, but I don't have the knowledge or resources.
That's not what a patent is for....a patent gives you the exclusive rights for you and only you to make something for the next 20 years.
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Old Sep 27, 2007, 01:51 PM   #13
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That's not what a patent is for....a patent gives you the exclusive rights for you and only you to make something for the next 20 years.
Well, in that case, there's no point in getting a patent. See, you learn something everyday.

So, how would you suggest I market this idea?
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Old Sep 27, 2007, 02:03 PM   #14
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So, how would you suggest I market this idea?
First publish it.

If you want to avoid others from patenting it, you can publish in a place like http://www.ip.com which will be searched when others file for patents. This doesn't take much, only a few hundred dollars, but stops others from patenting your idea.

Similarly you could file for a provisional patent without an attorney for a few hundred bucks. That way if someone wants to turn it into a patent, you have a year to decide...

B
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Old Sep 27, 2007, 02:16 PM   #15
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That's not what a patent is for....a patent gives you the exclusive rights for you and only you to make something for the next 20 years.
To be more specific, a patent does not give you the right to carry out your idea. Generally, you would need to perform a 'freedom to operate' search based on your idea to see if any aspect of it is protected by existing patents. A patent, rather than giving you the right to do something, prevents others from doing what you have patented.
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