Bonum Certa Men Certa

Hype Waves Exploited by the Software Patents Lobby: Blockchain, Autonomous Driving, Artificial Intelligence, Big Data, and Wearables

Beach textures



Summary: In an effort to tackle (or work around) 35 U.S.C. ۤ 101 the patent microcosm embraces and overuses a bunch of popular, fashionable, sometimes-revived trends, which nonetheless represent software-implemented concepts and are often not novel at all (except the buzzwords)

THE MOMENT that a buzzword (or a hype wave) gets used to describe a patent (or an invention, whether real or perceived) you just know that someone is trying to bypass 35 U.S.C. ۤ 101 (or a similar section) at the USPTO. It has become so common. Companies disguise software patents as all sorts of things, including "cloud", "IoT", and "AI".

"Companies disguise software patents as all sorts of things, including "cloud", "IoT", and "AI"."There's an attempt to find new methods to patent software. Over the weekend when Patent Docs did its usual event/broadcast promotions (e.g. [1, 2, 3, 4]) it also revealed this upcoming 'webinar' set up by a villainous corporate front group, Intellectual Property Owners Association (IPO), funded by IBM and others like it in order to push software patents and try to change the law. This 'webinar' is lobbying on ۤ 101 and it covers "patent eligibility grounds on the basis that there are factual disputes that underlie the determination of patent eligibility under ۤ 101."

"Over the past week we have seen quite a few buzzwords being used as surrogates for software patents."These software patents are worthless. But if they're not challenged at PTAB or in a court, then they might still be useful for coercion purposes.

Over the past week we have seen quite a few buzzwords being used as surrogates for software patents. Blockchain patents, for example, are software patents and are therefore worthless, but don't think that patent lawyers will allow this hype wave to go to waste. Fritz Wetzel/Ratner Prestia wrote an article titled "Blockchain Technology—Patent Eligible Subject Matter or Just a Business Model?"

It's introduced as a "software-based technology":

Briefly, blockchain is a software-based technology that allows the transfer of data in certain divided blocks which are all encrypted. The blocks need to be confirmed from different participants in a network and will be stored decentralized. Hence, it is or should not be possible to manipulate the transferred and stored data because if only one block is manipulated, the system would immediately recognize this manipulation and can prevent any claim or request on this data. Not only can this technology be used to transfer funds between market participants, it can also perform the transfer of any kind of data such as music files, literature, smart license contracts and even sensitive confidential data from governments.



Another so-called 'software-based technology' is HEVC, which is full of patents that IAM is promoting this month, along with so-called "autonomous vehicles" patents. It has become another one of those hype waves -- to the point where two days ago Watchtroll published "Ford Developing Autonomous Systems for Police Cars, Other Emergency Vehicle" (software again).

These patent maximalists/lawyers are, as usual, attempting to patent software under the guise of "Autonomous Driving". Here's the new article titled "The Driverless Race Is On: Patenting Autonomous Driving" (we already wrote some articles on this topic).

"This development is, for instance, focused on platforms, software, navigation and infrastructure," says the article. It boils down to software which does things inside the car.

There are other renewed hype waves in the headline. Samuel Davis, for example, wrote for IAM about "AI" under the heading "Beyond the hype" (ironically), then alluding to "AI for intellectual property" (alluding to patent management, for example, using computer programs).

"There are other renewed hype waves in the headline."The patent maximalists, i.e. people who profit from patents, are jumping on revived hype waves here. How about "House Bill Would Establish National Security Commission on Artificial Intelligence"? Patent Docs published that a few days ago and as we noted here last month, Jones Day (Carl A. Kukkonen III, Douglas H. Pearson Ph.D. and Ognian V. Shentov) came up with a slant on "AI" and "BD" hype (they even gave an acronym to "Big Data"). They're reposting it:

AI and BD inventions can be effectively and concurrently protected via patents, trade secrets, and copyrights, as well as by means of contractual arrangements. Notwithstanding such variety of protection mechanisms, patents remain an essential part of an overall IP strategy for innovation-oriented companies. Given uncertainties over patent eligibility and validity, careful attention must be heeded to optimally capture the value of AI and BD innovations for both defensive and offensive purposes.


"Wearable" is another one of those hype waves. Todd C. Basile and David J. Dykeman decided that a "Patent Strategy is Crucial for Wearable Innovations," but all we have here is a couple of patent attorneys trying to sell patents on just about anything, this time in the form of a bogus article which is actually lobbying/marketing:

As wearable innovations continue to enhance and shape healthcare and the way we live, innovators must focus on protecting their inventions. By building a strategic patent portfolio that has worldwide patent protection, innovators can thrive in the growing wearables market.


As we recently saw in a district court in California, even patents on so-called 'wearables' are nowadays deemed abstract.

Recent Techrights' Posts

Web Monopolist, Google, 'Pulls a Microsoft' by Hijacking/Overriding the Name of Competitor and Alternative to the Web
Gulag 'hijacking' 'Gemini'
 
CNN Contributes to Demolition of the Open Web
Reprinted with permission from Ryan Farmer
Eben Moglen on Encryption and Anonymity
The alternate net we need, and how we can build it ourselves
Yet More Microsofters Inside the Board of Mozilla (Which Has Just Outsourced Firefox Development to Microsoft's Proprietary Prison)
Do you want a browser controlled (and spied on) by such a company?
IRC Proceedings: Monday, December 04, 2023
IRC logs for Monday, December 04, 2023
GNU/Linux Now Exceeds 3.6% Market Share on Desktops/Laptops, According to statCounter
things have changed for Windows in China
Over at Tux Machines...
GNU/Linux news
Links 05/12/2023: Debt Brake in Germany and Layoffs at Condé Nast (Reddit, Wired, Ars Technica and More)
Links for the day
[Meme] Social Control Media Giants Shaping Debates on BSDs and GNU/Linux
listening to random people in Social Control Media
Reddit (Condé Nast), Which Has Another Round of Layoffs This Month, Incited People Against GNU/Linux Users (Divide and Rule, It's 2003 All Over Again!)
Does somebody (perhaps a third party) fan the flames?
Who Will Hold the Open Source Initiative (OSI) Accountable for Taking Bribes From Microsoft and Selling Out to Enable/Endorse Massive Copyright Infringement?
it does Microsoft advocacy
Using Gemini to Moan About Linux and Spread .NET
Toxic, acidic post in Gemini
Links 04/12/2023: Mass Layoffs at Spotify (Debt, Losses, Bubble) Once Again
Links for the day
ChatGPT Hype/Vapourware (and 'Bing') Has Failed, Google Maintains Dominance in Search
a growing mountain of debt and crises
[Meme] Every Real Paralegal Knows This
how copyright law works
Forging IRC Logs and Impersonating Professors: the Lengths to Which Anti-Free Software Militants Would Go
Impersonating people in IRC, too
IRC Proceedings: Sunday, December 03, 2023
IRC logs for Sunday, December 03, 2023
GNU/Linux Popularity Surging, So Why Did MakeUseOf Quit Covering It About 10 Days Ago?
It's particularly sad because some of the best articles about GNU/Linux came from that site, both technical articles and advocacy-centric pieces
Links 04/12/2023: COVID-19 Data Misused Again, Anti-Consumerism Activism
Links for the day
GNOME Foundation is in Reliable Hands (Executive Director)
Growing some good in one's garden
Links 03/12/2023: New 'Hey Hi' (AI) Vapouware and Palantir/NHS Collusion to Spy on Patients Comes Under Legal Challenge
Links for the day
'Confidential Computing'? More Like a Giant Back Door.
CacheWarp AMD CPU Attack Grants Root Access in Linux VMs
IRC Proceedings: Saturday, December 02, 2023
IRC logs for Saturday, December 02, 2023
Links 03/12/2023: CRISPR as Patented Minefield, Lots of Greenwashing Abound
Links for the day