Posts Tagged ‘David Kappos’

PTO Issues Notice on Improvement in Patent Application Quality – A Very Modest Proposal

Wednesday, January 16th, 2013

On January 15, 2013, the USPTO released a notice – see link below – requesting comments on its suggestions of ways to “improve the quality of issued patents” by improving the quality of application drafting. There are two brief sections in the Notice: “Clarifying the Scope of Claims” and “Clarifying the Meaning of Claim Terms in the Specification.” Since this is a biotech blawg, I will skip the sections relating to software and means-plus-function clauses.

The suggestions in Part A boil down to: (1) Write claims in outline form with elements in lettered or Roman numeral-designated subsections, (2) Minimize or eliminate preambles (the Office wants us to indicate if we think they are limiting, so let’s stop using them), (3) Specifically identify support for claim elements in the specification (No – should only be “necessary”– if at all — when claims are amended – original claims are part of the specification), (4) Indicate whether or not examples are intended to be limiting or “merely illustrative” (Easy one - they are always illustrative).

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Top Ten Biotech IP Stories of 2012

Friday, December 28th, 2012

I admit, I am a sucker for lists, esp. Top Ten Lists, and a few days ago, sat through a half hour of “local news” wherein the anchors breathlessly related the Top Ten Rhode Island News Stories of 2012. Well, readers, you deserve no less that my Top Ten List of IP “Stories” that broke, sometimes over us, in 2012. So that this post is not endless, I will write it from very abbreviated notes and leave it to you to dig the details out of the patents4life archives – or to just back up through the posts of 2012. Also, past Prometheus and Myriad, the list does not mean to prioritize the events reported.

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USPTO Director Kappos Resigns

Monday, November 26th, 2012

USPTO Director David Kappos has announced that he will leave the Office early next year, perhaps by the end of January. He became the Director in 2009, leaving his position as essentially Head Patent Counsel at IBM.

He brought much-needed patent law expertise to the Office and began a number of initiatives designed to improve examination efficiency, as well as to expedite prosecution of applications claiming “green technology.” His Office provided guidance to Examiners and practitioners following each of a series of major judicial decisions, including KSR, Bilski, Ariad and now, Mayo. He was also “tasked” with opening three satellite offices – in Detroit, Silicon Valley and Denver.

As if this weren’t enough to keep him and his staff busy, he also oversaw the generation of pages of detailed regulations to implement the AIA, the most comprehensive “reform” of 35 USC since 1952. I called him the hardest working man in patent “biz”. His legacy is already in place, and he will be missed.

Parting note from Director Kappos:

It has been an immense privilege to lead the USPTO, our nation’s innovation agency, over the last three and a half years—and it is with deep gratitude for your dedication and hard work that I write to inform you that I will be leaving the Agency around the end of January 2013.

I cannot thank you enough for your hard work over the years—and I wish you all the very best ahead.

Re-Election of Obama Keeps Patent Law and Policy on Track

Wednesday, November 7th, 2012

At least Director Kappos does not have to clean out his desk. The re-election of President Obama gives him another four years of job security – if he and his hard-working staff don’t burn out first. No matter what you think of the AIA, Director Kappos has done a remarkable job of proposing implementing regulations for its many new procedures. Apart from issuing rules by the bushel, he has been “tasked” with opening three new satellite offices. He has begun to develop guidance in non-AIA areas such as patenting diagnostic assays post-Prometheus. The defeat of President Obama might well have caused a return to the Rogan years of a “know nothing” [about patent law] Commissioner.

A President Romney surely would have supported repeal of “Obamacare”. No matter what you think of the more controversial parts of the law, it also contains the outline of procedures to approve generic biologicals, a way to cut healthcare costs that is long overdue. At least the players can continue to move forward, and not be put into limbo or returned to the starting line to run a race with new rules.

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