January 26, 2013
Ernie Ball v. Earvana presents episodic ineptness by a patent prosecutor, examiner, litigators and district court judge. 6,433,264 claims "a compensated nut for a stringed instruments," as a means for tuning for "fixed intonation portions [that] does not form a sinusoidal arc."
January 24, 2013
Rexnord Industries got an inter partes reexam on 6,523,680, which claims a radius conveyor belt system, after patent holder Habasit accused Rexnord of infringement. The examiner crucified the patent on the alter of prior art, but the PTO Board resurrected it, holding the patent valid. Rexnord appealed to the CAFC.
January 14, 2013
The lawlessness of the CAFC continues. Before the ITC, InterDigital, an American company, managed to outmaneuver Nokia, a Finnish company, from importing products. Chief Judge Rader led a pack of nine in spouting nonsense in defense of domestic corporatism. Only Judge Newman had her wits about her. "InterDigital does not manufacture the patented invention in the United States, and no domestic industry produces the items for which exclusion is sought. The license that InterDigital seeks to impose on Nokia, on threat of exclusion of importation, is not a license to manufacture any patented product in the United States; it is a license to import products made in foreign countries. The panel majority errs in holding that Congress intended to authorize access to the ITC exclusion remedy in such circumstances. That is not the purpose of the "licensing" amendment to Section 337 of the Tariff Act. The panel majority erred in holding that the domestic industry requirement is met by licensing the importation of foreign-made products." (CAFC 2010-1093)
January 7, 2013
In re Chevalier (CAFC 2012-1254) is a garden-variety affirmation of obviousness, where hindsight motivation was used to combine prior art references to solve the problem of the claimed invention. "The Supreme Court stated in KSR that "when a patent claims a structure already known in the prior art that is altered by the mere substitution of one element for another known in the field, the combination must do more than yield a predictable result.'" Further, under its recent "substantial evidence" standard, the CAFC continues to make clear that some egregious error must be evident for it to give any traction to denying the USPTO its purview.