Tuesday, February 27, 2007

Federal Register Notices Re. Paperwork Reduction

The February 26, 2007 (Vol. 72, No. 37, p.8355) Federal Register contains a submission to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) by the USPTO regarding Initial Patent Applications. Since electronic filing is fairly new, the USPTO does not yet have an accurate estimate of the time it takes to fill out an electronic application. Until USPTO personnel can reevaluate the timing with more data, they have indicated to OMB that it takes about the same amount of time to fill out the electronic application as it does the paper version.

Comments and recommendations about this submission can be addressed to David Rostker, OMB Desk Officer, Room 10202, New Executive Office Building, 725 17th Street NW., Washington, DC 20503 to be received on or before March 18,2007.

Another USPTO entry in the February 26, 2007 (Vol. 72, No. 37, p.8356-8357) Federal Register invites comment about the USPTO's efforts to reduce paperwork as required by the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995. The entry focuses on practitioner records maintenance, disclosure, and discipline before the Patent and Trademark Office.

Written comments about these procedures must be submitted on or before April 27, 2007 by any of the following methods:

  • E-mail:Susan.Brown@uspto.gov. Include
    ``0651-0017 comment'' in the subject line of the message.

  • Fax: 571-273-0112,
    marked to the attention of Susan Brown.

  • Mail: Susan K. Brown, Records Officer, Office of the Chief Information Officer, Architecture, Engineering and Technical Services, Data Architecture and Services Division, U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, P.O. Box 1450, Alexandria, VA 22313-1450.

Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Trademark Request for Reconsideration/Final Refusal

The United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) has proposed to amend the Code of Federal Regulations (37 CFR 2.64) "to require a request for reconsideration of an examining attorney's final refusal or requirement to be filed through the Trademark Electronic Application System (TEAS) within three months of the mailing date of the final action." The change proposes to streamline the trademark process once a final action has issued. It will reduce the need for remands and transfers between the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board (TTAB) and the examining attorney.

Email comments about the proposed rule to TM RECON COMMENTS@USPTO.GOV or submit written comments to Commissioner for Trademarks, P.O. Box 1451, Alexandria, VA 22313-1451, attention Cynthia C. Lynch. Comments must be received by April 16, 2007.

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Worldwide Patent News

If you are interested in keeping up with world-wide patent information, EPO's Patent Information News (formerly EPIDOS News) available in German, English and French versions is a rich source. For example, an article in the latest (4/06) issue entitled "Are You Fit for Asia" contains the following statistics and information together with further explanation and links:
  • approximate one quarter of all PCT applications in 2005 were written in Japanese, Chinese or Korean
  • the total number of foreign patent filings in India rose to 19, 984 in 2005, a 44% increase on 2004
  • the Korean Intellectual Property Rights Information Service (KIPRIS) now also offers online file inspection
  • draft amendments to the Chinese Trade Mark Law were published for public consultation in April 2006.

Friday, February 9, 2007

Slate on Google Patent Search

To those that missed it, a few weeks ago Slate ran a fun and interesting article on the newly released Google patents search. While noting his amazement at the sheer amount of information contained in online patents databases (both through google and the USPTO), the author questions both the efficacy of google's search system and the usefulness of the patent system in general.

Thursday, February 8, 2007

2007 National Inventors Hall of Fame Winners

The National Inventors Hall of Fame (founded in 1973 by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office and the National Council of Intellectual Property Law Association) announced its 2007 winners today (2/8/07). To be eligible for the honor inventors must hold a U.S. patent and their invention "must have contributed to the welfare of society and have promoted the progress of science and the useful arts."

Posthumous awards will recognize the following inventors at the awards ceremony on May 4th and 5th at the Hall's home in Akron, Ohio : Allen Breed for the automotive airbag; David Cushman and Miguel Ondetti for captopril (medical Ace inhibitor); Donald Davies for digital packet switching; William Goddard and John Lynott for magnetic disk storage; Peter Goldmark for the long playing (LP) record; Maurice Hilleman for vaccines including the MMR; Godfrey Hounsfield for the CAT scanner; Arthur Nobile for prednisone (steriod); and Otto Wichterle for the soft contact lens.

The living inventors to be inducted are: Paul Baran for digital packet switching; Emmett Chappelle for bioluminescence techniques; John Franz for Roundup® herbicide; Leroy Hood for the DNA sequencer; Paul Lauterbur for magnetic resonance imaging—MRI; Peter Mansfield also for magnetic resonance imaging—MRI; and Robert Metcalfe for the Ethernet.

Wednesday, February 7, 2007

Patent Searching Classes

The patent and trademark depository library at Fondren Library, Rice University has scheduled 2 patent searching classes for February:

Tuesday, Feb. 13, 2007 4:00-6:00
Saturday, Feb. 24, 2007 2:00-4:00

The classes covers preliminary patent searching using both Internet resources and resources available at the library. There is a $5.00 fee and registration is required.

Please call 713-348-6212 for additional information. Additional sessions will be added on our website.