30 April 2007

US Patents: Is the Tide Turning?

Maybe I'm an incorrigible optimist, but these look hopeful signs:

The U.S. Supreme Court made it easier to challenge patents for failing to introduce genuine innovations, siding with Intel Corp. and Cisco Systems Inc. and dealing a setback to the drug and biotechnology industries.


The decision extends a Supreme Court trend that has put new limits on patent rights. In today's case, the justices heeded arguments from large computer companies and automakers that the lower court test, which centered on the requirement that an invention be "non-obvious," had given too much power to developers of trivial technological improvements.

"Granting patent protection to advances that would occur in the ordinary course without real innovation retards progress," Justice Anthony Kennedy wrote for the court.

(Via Slashdot.)

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