Abstract

http://ssrn.com/abstract=2152123
 


 



The Implications of Technological Advancement for Obviousness


Brenda M. Simon


Thomas Jefferson School of Law; Stanford Law School - Center for Law & the Biosciences

September 25, 2012

Michigan Telecommunications and Technology Law Review, Vol. 19, p. 331 (2013)

Abstract:     
This Article examines whether advances in technology can make an invention too obvious to deserve a patent. It focuses on two developments in technology with the most pervasive effect on cognition in recent decades: the availability of information in a searchable form and increased processing capabilities. The assumption has been that access to information and computing power will result in better understanding, improved creativity, or decreased uncertainty, when it in fact may not.

I propose that courts and examiners, in assessing obviousness, look at whether persons of ordinary skill in the art actually appreciated the applicability of technological advances at the time in question. Those skilled in diverse technological fields often adopt advances to different degrees and at varying rates. Refocusing the obviousness determination on what actually happens helps guard against hindsight bias.

Number of Pages in PDF File: 47

Keywords: intellectual property, patent, creativity, nonobviousness, science, invention

JEL Classification: O31, O34

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Date posted: September 25, 2012 ; Last revised: July 13, 2013

Suggested Citation

Simon, Brenda M., The Implications of Technological Advancement for Obviousness (September 25, 2012). Michigan Telecommunications and Technology Law Review, Vol. 19, p. 331 (2013). Available at SSRN: http://ssrn.com/abstract=2152123

Contact Information

Brenda M. Simon (Contact Author)
Thomas Jefferson School of Law ( email )
1155 Island Ave
San Diego, CA 92101
United States
619-961-4307 (Phone)

Stanford Law School - Center for Law & the Biosciences ( email )
559 Nathan Abbott Way
Stanford, CA 94305-8610
United States

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