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How To Protect An Idea: A Guide For Scientists, Engineers, Inventors, And Business Leaders To Understand Patent Claims Part 2

How To Protect An Idea: A Guide For Scientists, Engineers, Inventors, And Business Leaders To Understand Patent Claims, Part 2

Nothing Will Save You More Research Time And Money Than Understanding Patents! A friend of mine was sitting in his first meeting at a major chemical company listening to a group of chemists discussing a challenge they were facing. It was going badly. Management had assigned them the critical task of making a molecule. But during their research, the chemists found a U.S. patent that discussed several ways to make the molecule. The chemists kept pouring over the patent again and again, but the patent discussed every possible way to make the molecule. They had spent several months trying to find other ways to make it. None of them worked. What confused my friend was that they kept talking about the experimental and discussion sections of the patent. He couldn’t figure out why they weren’t talking about the claims. THEN IT HIT HIM. They had no idea which section of the patent was legally enforceable. And when he looked at the claims, he realized that the claims weren’t even related to the molecule or the method of making it. They had been free to make molecule the entire time. This is the second post in my series entitled “How To…

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How To Protect An Idea: A Guide For Scientists, Engineers, Inventors, And Business Leaders To Understand Patent Claims Part 1

How To Protect An Idea: A Guide For Scientists, Engineers, Inventors, And Business Leaders To Understand Patent Claims, Part 1

Over 97% of Patents Are Worthless! Protect Your Invention Before It’s Too Late! It happened again. A small business owner asked what I do. I responded that I am a patent attorney. I help inventors protect their inventions. The man filled with fury. He said, “Well, then I need to talk with you! I paid a lot of money to get a patent on one of my products and now someone else is making it! I can’t believe that they can change one little thing, and now my patent doesn’t protect me!” I gave him my card. I hope it’s not too late. This situation happens way too often. Read on to make sure that it doesn’t happen to you. Most people, even inventors, scientists, engineers, professors, doctors, and business professionals, know little or nothing about patents or patent law. What typically happens is that inventors, entrepreneurs, and small businesses run to the largest law firm that they can find. They think that a big name automatically means big quality. Does Taco Bell mean quality Mexican food?! Large law firms are billing machines. They place enormous pressure on partners and associates to crank out billable hours. To maximize profits, the…

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Make Money With A Patent

How To Make Money With A Patent: My Guide For Determining If You Should Patent Your Idea, Part 8

This is the last post in my series “How To Make Money With A Patent: My Guide For Determining If You Should Patent Your Idea.” Thank you for taking the time to read my suggestions for how to make money with a patent. I hope you found these suggestions helpful. Here is a quick summary. Look Before You Leap: Think Before You File U.S. Patents typically cost from $20,000 - $30,000 from filing to issuance. Patents do not make you money, but you can use them to stop others from copying your invention. You should have a plan for how you are going to make money with your patent before you draft the patent application or even approach a patent attorney. You should carefully consider the market for practicing your invention, licensing your invention, or raising funds for your invention before filing a patent application. No customers = no money = no business Throughout this series, you may notice that I referred you to several resources, such as books and webpages. However, you may also notice that I never referred you a patent attorney to determine how to make money with your patent. This omission is intentional. As a patent…

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Make Money With A Patent

How To Make Money With A Patent: My Guide For Determining If You Should Patent Your Idea, Part 7

This is the seventh post in my series entitled “How To Make Money With A Patent: My Guide For Determining If You Should Patent Your Idea.” If you read my previous posts, you will know how to avoid getting a worthless patent, and how to make money by practicing or licensing your invention. Now it’s time to talk about the reason that I believe most businesses actually obtain patents. Patents are only issued when the government of a country finds that an innovation is novel and non-obvious across throughout history and the world. Therefore, many people consider patents to be prestigious indicators that a person or business is innovative. Patents also confer the right of the patent owner to sue others to exclude them from practicing the claimed invention, so many believe that the patent grants the patent owner a powerful monopoly over the invention. These beliefs make it much more desirable to invest in businesses that patent inventions over those that do not. Increasing Investor Confidence By Filing Patent Applications The analysis from my fifth post regarding whether it will be profitable to patent an invention is a part of the picture. The bigger picture is that most innovative…

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Make Money With A Patent

How To Make Money With A Patent: My Guide For Determining If You Should Patent Your Idea, Part 6

This is the sixth post in my series entitled “How To Make Money With A Patent: My Guide For Determining If You Should Patent Your Idea.” If you read my previous posts, you will know how to avoid getting a worthless patent, and how to make money by practicing your invention. Now it’s time to discuss how to make money from your patent when you do not plan to practice your invention. Before filing a patent application, you should consider whether you are able or willing to directly market your invention to the public or businesses. For example, if you invent an improved component for a laptop, it is doubtful that you would found a laptop manufacturing company just to incorporate your improved component. One way to make money from your idea would be to license or sell your idea to a laptop manufacturing company. A second way to make money from your idea would be to found a company that manufactures the component with the idea of selling the company to the laptop company. This post will discuss the first way of making money from your idea. My next post will discuss making money by founding your own company.…

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Make Money With A Patent

How To Make Money With A Patent: My Guide For Determining If You Should Patent Your Idea, Part 5

This is the fifth post in my series entitled “How To Make Money With A Patent: My Guide For Determining If You Should Patent Your Idea.” If you read the second post, you will know a few basics about patents that every inventor and business person should know. If you read the third and fourth posts, you understand a few of the factors that make most patents worthless. Now it’s time to discuss how a patent can add value to your business by protecting a competitive advantage in the marketplace. The first step in this discussion is to make sure that your innovation will actually give you a competitive advantage in the marketplace. I do not have any business degree and I am not a patent valuation expert. So I will leave it to you to judge the reasoning and wisdom of my analysis here and whether it applies to your situation. A Patent Basis For Discussion A few things must be understood about patents before any meaningful discussion can take place. U.S. Patents do not make you money; they merely allow you to sue someone for making, selling, or using a claimed product or service in the U.S. You…

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Make Money With A Patent

How To Make Money With A Patent: My Guide For Determining If You Should Patent Your Idea, Part 4

This is the forth post in my series entitled “How To Make Money With A Patent: My Guide For Determining If You Should Patent Your Idea.” If you read my second post, you will know a few basics about patents that everyone should know. In my third post, I discussed a few of the preventable, organizational reasons that over 97% of patents are worthless. Now it’s time to discuss the less preventable reasons that over 97% of patents are worthless, even though about 80% of patents are filed by large, sophisticated businesses. Prospecting For Patent Gold Legend has it that a well-known chain of bookstores hired consultants to tell them how to maximize their profits. The consultants carefully analyzed all the sales and expenses of the bookstores and noticed a pattern. The bookstores were spending about 80% of their money and shelf space on books that were not selling. However, they made over 80% of their sales from the less than 20% of books that outsold all the rest, the “best sellers.” The advice of the consultants was that the bookstore should reduce their overhead by only stocking the bestsellers. The bookstores were stunned to say the least. How were…

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Make Money With A Patent

How To Make Money With A Patent: My Guide For Determining If You Should Patent Your Idea, Part 3

Reasons Why Most Patents Are Worthless This is the third post in my series entitled “How To Make Money With A Patent: My Guide For Determining If You Should Patent Your Idea.” If you read my first post If you read my here, you will know that I suggest thinking about a patent as an investment. If you read my second post, you will know the seven basics that everyone should know about patents. Now it’s time to discuss why over 97% patents are worthless, and how you can avoid wasting your money on a worthless patent. Epic Fail Legend has it that a photocopier company had just come out with a new photocopier that was much better than any photocopier on the market. It would also be priced about the same as their old copier. They expected it to be an instant bestseller. This created a problem. The company had a large inventory of the old copier, which represented a substantial financial investment. However, the new copier was so much better than the old copier that management didn’t know how they were going to sell off their inventory of the old copier. Management’s solution was simple: they offered their…

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Make Money With A Patent

How To Make Money With A Patent: My Guide For Determining If You Should Patent Your Idea, Part 2

This is the second post in my series entitled “How To Make Money With A Patent: My Guide For Determining If You Should Patent Your Idea.” Please click here to read the first post, and learn from Thomas Edison’s mistake. The Biggest Problem In Patent Law The biggest problem in patent law is not bad laws, bad court decisions, or bad science. The biggest problem in patent law is a failure to think. The critical question is: will this patent add value? If you can’t figure out how you are going to make money with a patent, then you probably won’t. To understand how to make money with a patent, you need to understand a few basics about patents. Seven Things That Everyone Should Know About Patents! You Or One Of Your Employees Must Have Invented Something To Apply For A Patent — You cannot patent the invention of another. You Must Pay To Obtain A Patent — The government does not notice your invention and award a patent to the inventor. Instead, an inventor or assignee (owner) must pay to draft and file a patent application. Further, the owner of the patent application may have to pay even more…

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Make Money With A Patent

How To Make Money With A Patent: My Guide For Determining If You Should Patent Your Idea, Part 1

Save Time and Money By Learning From Thomas Edison’s Mistake! Thomas Edison is considered to be one of the greatest inventors of all time. He obtained over 1,000 U.S. Patents. However, he made a crucial mistake early in his career that nearly cost him everything! In 1868, Edison was just starting his career. He and his family were nearly broke. Thomas got a job at the Western Union Company. In his spare time, he invented and patented an electronic voting recorder that could quickly count the votes of a legislature. However, when he tried to sell his idea to the Massachusetts legislature, they were not interested. The legislators told him that they didn’t want to have their votes counted quickly because they wanted more time to change the minds of their fellow legislators. Thomas was stuck with a great invention that no one wanted to buy. But Thomas learned from his mistake. Thomas’s next great invention was for an improved stock ticker. These were devices that could read telegraph messages regarding stock prices and print them out as paper statements. Thomas had figured out a way to synchronize several stock ticker translations so that the potential customer could simultaneously receive…

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