Reading list here….good for discovery.
September 27, 2006
From a legal standpoint, a patent secures a property right, in precise parallel to real estate titles and automobile titles
You have ownership over your ideas. You can keep your ideas to yourself. You can share them.
Society needs markets for creative ideas. Innovators invest in solving problems and then provide those ideas, for a fee, to others who implement them.
Ideas are particularly easy to steal. Ideas are very difficult to
sell, because in order for a price to be negotiated, the idea must be
disclosed. Once the idea is disclosed, a potental buyer is often in a
position to simply take the idea.
To make a market for innovation and creativity work requires some form of registration and protection of the property right.
For some forms of property, society sets up systems to help secure those rights through registration and protection. It is in the interest of society to do this, to reduce disputes and to facilitate trade.
Land title and title insurance, automobile titles, investment securities laws, copyrights and patents all provide the function of securing a property right in order to reduce disputes and facilitate trade.
Patents in general
A patent is a set of exclusive rights granted by a state to a patentee (the inventor or assignee) for a limited period of time.
To obtain a patent, inventors must file patent applications
in each and every country that they want protection in, such as Japan,
China, the US or India. Some regional offices exist, such as the European Patent Office,
which act as supranational bodies with the power to grant patents which
can then be brought into effect in the member states. A European
patent, for example, can be brought into effect in up to 36 countries
in or neighbouring the European Union. Although there are no worldwide patents, the Patent Cooperation Treaty provides a unified patent application filing procedure for most countries of the world.
Patent applications must disclose how to make and use the invention
in sufficient detail so that another person of ordinary skill in the
art can reproduce the invention without undue experimentation. If it is
not self evident, then a patent application must also disclose what
practical utility an invention has.