Posts Tagged ‘Microsoft Corp’

Research Corporation Technologies Inc. v. Microsoft Corp.: Sanity Returns to Section 101 Abstraction Analysis

Thursday, December 9th, 2010

Since the U.S. Supreme Court’s Bilski v. Kappos decision, there have been a raft of District Court and Board decisions that took the ”abstract idea” exclusion for patentable subject matter past the point of absurdity.  Thankfully it did not take long for some sanity to return to the legal precedent on this all-important issue.   On December 8, a three judge panel (Judges Rader, Newman and Plager) of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit ruled that, to be found unpatentable under the abstract idea exclusion from 35 U.S.C. §101, an invention’s abstractness must “exhibit itself so manifestly as to override the broad statutory categories” of patent eligibility.  Research Corporation Technologies Inc. v. Microsoft Corp., Fed. Cir., No. 2010-1037, 12/8/10.  RCT v. Microsoft Federal Circuit Decision

The patents in question, owned by Research Corporation Technologies Inc. (for a profile of this company’s patent holdings see: http://www.patentbuddy.com/Company/Profile/RES-CORP-TECH-INC/155237), involved digital imaging process claims.  The Federal Circuit found that these claims, which had been found unpatentable under Section 101 by the district court, are patentable subject matter because they claim “functional and palpable applications in the field of computer technology.”

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