US Patent Applications

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My brother pointed out to me that my name shows up (finally!) on a US patent application search.

At MyFamily.com we had many ideas and applied for multiple patents. I’m not sure any has issued yet; but at least one is now visible at the USPTO web site.

The patent advanced search engine is highly fielded but has one of the worst interfaces I have used in a long time. I finally figured out how to query it to find our application on what I call the “Visual Next Click Analysis Tool” that we used in-house.

This is much like the Omniture Click Map feature, which I love.

A patent attorney friend told me that only 3% of all patents that are issued actually generate commercial value.

Another patent attorney recently showed me a patent on a way to comb your hair from four different sides to cover up male baldness. So some patents are silly.

But it is still nice to see your name in lights, er, online, every once in a while. 🙂

(Note: I left MyFamily.com in Feb 2002 and haven’t been directly involved with the company since then. I am not a company insider.)

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4 Responses

  1. John Swensen

    The patent you indicated is a perfect example of why I feel software patents shouldn’t be allowed. This is neither novel, nor unique. Nearly every content management system I have ever seen maintains usage information and allows both users and administrators the ability to monitor link usage. Just my $0.02.


  2. Bill Melendez

    Patents tend to be generic anyway. Most patents, except those covering new and just
    discovered technologies, are a rehash of an older patent making most patents difficult to
    defend in court. Issue here isn’t the patent but the idea that “it is patented” and therefore
    poses a threat or risk to potential violators of the patent. It will not prevent someone from
    making changes or implementing portions of the patent so as to develop a new or different
    way of doing things. We call that innovation.

  3. Congratulations on getting your name on a patent! As a small entity inventor I feel there is a lot of improvement needed in the Patent system as it exists. Some thoughts are on my blog.

    Imran Anwar’s In My Humble Opinion: Patently Getting Beaten Black & Blue(berry)



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