Innovation in US Patent Law

An invention is an original or unexpected machine, method, formula or composition. The invention process involves an inventive application of some of the resources available to a person skilled in the relevant field to make an article or supply a service which has been previously not invented or is still being made by some other person. It can also be an original development of a process or product or some other item or idea. Inventors must follow the law of inventions.

There are different types of inventions like process or manufacture, machine or article and idea. Each type has a succession of steps like discovery, invention, application, protection, market, and consummation. There are many categories of inventions like natural resources, plants and animals, computer and software, physical products, light and gases, transportation, communications and energy, machines and their parts, foods and chemicals, industrial and agricultural products, and machine tools.

Discovery is the first stage of invention. It refers to the act of discovering an invention. The invention must be new and useful. Discovery can be scientific, commercial or political. If it can be reproduced, then the invention is protected by patent laws.

The invention can be of any form or shape but needs to have a certain amount of creativity to make it a reality. The first step for an inventor is to have an idea and to analyze his capabilities and the existing resources for the same. After a thorough analysis, an inventor should be able to come out with a new concept and it must be tested if it is able to meet the requirements of the society in which it will be used. This is one of the most important stages for innovation and it is required that an inventor should carry out a detailed research and testing before implementing his invention.

The next stage in the innovation process is to define and come up with the idea. Most inventors do not use legal boundaries while coming up with a new concept. Some inventors use the aid of experts and some inventors even hire a team of professionals to help them in the creation of a product. However, there are many inventors who follow a simple idea and carry it out successfully using only their own creative minds without the support of anybody or any professional help.

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Patent law in the United States provides protection to all types of inventions irrespective of their nature, quality or utility. A patent is issued for a period of 20 years. In order to make an invention patentable, three main conditions have to be fulfilled. These include, the novelty of the invention, the utility of the invention and competitive advantage. In order to make an invention patentable, all these conditions have to be satisfied.