Ryan N. Phelan

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PatentNext Summary: As a general rule, software-related patents should include an algorithm. An algorithm provides support for a software-related patent in a variety of ways, one of which is to provide support for a claim determined to be a “means-plus-function” (MPF) term pursuant to 35 U.S.C. § 112(f). Without such support, an MPF term can be held invalid. The below article provides additional details. This article forms the first part of a multi-part series. ***…
PatentNext Summary: Currently, patent laws require human inventors. For this reason, no country or legal jurisdiction presently allows an Artificial Intelligence (AI) to be an inventor. Such patent laws, however, are typically decades old and we can expect continued debate, and possible legislation, on the topic of whether an AI can be an inventor. The below article provides additional details. *** Can Artificial Intelligence (AI) invent? No, according to various patent offices and patent laws…
PatentNext Summary: AI-related inventions have experienced explosive growth. In view of this, the USPTO has provided guidance in the form of an example claim and an “informative” PTAB decision directed to AI-related claims that practitioners can use to aid in preparing robust patent claims on AI-related inventions. The below article provides additional details. *** Artificial Intelligence (AI) has experienced explosive growth across various industries. From Apple’s Face ID (face recognition), Amazon’s Alexa (voice recognition), to…
PatentNext Summary: Because AI is a relatively newer technology, court cases analyzing AI-related patents have been few in number. Given the increased numbers of AI patent filings, as recently reported by the USPTO, we can expect to see future court cases involving AI-related patents. We can also expect that courts will analyze these AI-related patents per the two-part Alice with the same scrutiny test as we have seen for more general software-related patent cases. Introduction…
PatentNext Summary: When preparing a patent application for software or computer-implemented invention, a best practice includes describing, in the patent specification, how the software or computer-implemented invention improves an underlying computing device. Examples include describing how software or computer-implemented invention improves the speed or efficiency of the underlying computer device and/or reduces its processing needs or memory usage.   The below article provides additional details. *** The Importance of Describing an “Improvement” for a Software or…
PatentNext Summary: Software-related inventions are patentable. Considerations for patenting software-related inventions include:  Whether the patent claims fall into one of the four categories of “inventions patentable” (e.g., “a process”); and Whether the patent claims recite (or do not recite) a judicial exception (e.g., an “abstract idea”) as described by the U.S. Supreme Court in its often cited  “Alice” decision. The below article provides additional details. *** Software increasingly empowers our everyday lives. From mobile apps…