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PatentNext is moderated by Ryan N. Phelan, a registered U.S. Patent Attorney and Software and Computer Engineer. Ryan previously worked in the IT industry as a consultant at Accenture, where he regularly consulted Fortune 500 companies in software and computing technologies. Ryan is featured in the IAM Strategy 300 & 300 Global Leaders guides, and was selected for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America© list in the practice area of Patent Law. Ryan is also an adjunct professor at Northwestern University’s Pritzker School of Law where he teaches coursework on Patenting Software Inventions. Learn more about Ryan.

PatentNext Takeaway: The U.S. Copyright Office originally granted copyright registration to a comic book titled “Zarya of the Dawn.” However, upon learning that the comic book included images created by an AI tool, the Office canceled the original registration but allowed a new registration more narrowly focused on the contributions of the human author, namely the text of the comic book and the selection of arrangements of the AI-generated images. Continue Reading U.S. Copyright Office Partially Allows Registration of Work having AI-generated Images (“Zarya of the Dawn”)

What is ChatGPT?

ChatGPT is an artificial intelligence (AI) model developed by OpenAI. In particular, ChatGPT is a type of “language” model designed to respond with a natural language reply when prompted with a text-based question. The “Chat” in ChatGPT refers to this question-and-answer design, where ChatGPT behaves like a ChatBot. Continue Reading ChatGPT and Intellectual Property (IP) related Topics

I am excited to announce the publication of the Intellectual Property Owner (IPO)’s white paper on “Software and Medical Device Guidance: A Global Perspective.”

The paper was authored by the IPO’s Software and Medical Device Subcommittee, which I had the honor and pleasure of leading in 2022. The Subcommittee reports to the IPO’s Software Committee. Continue Reading Announcing IPO white paper on a Global Perspective on Software and Medical Device Guidance 

PatentNext Summary: Software and computer-implemented inventions (CII) have experienced explosive growth in recent years. This article looks at laws of jurisdictions in Southeast Asia, comparing the status of enforcement and protection of software and CII in various Southeast Asia countries.Continue Reading Patenting Software And Computer-Implemented Inventions In Southeast Asia  

PatentNext Summary: The life sciences and healthcare fields produce big data, which Artificial Intelligence (AI) tools can use to train AI models to assist doctors, patients, researchers, and other stakeholders in various ways. In the intellectual property (IP) space, there has been explosive growth in this area, with AI-based patent filings addressing trending areas, including disease identification and diagnosis, drug discovery, personalized medicine, and clinical trials, among others. These trends are expected to continue though challenges remain, such as the balance between the need for health-related data to train AI models and privacy and ethical concerns in using such data.Continue Reading The Intersection of Artificial Intelligence (AI), Life Sciences, Healthcare, and Intellectual Property (IP)

PatentNext Summary: Artificial Intelligence (AI) typically involves certain common aspects such as training data and AI models trained from that training data. Nonetheless, a recent Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) decision found that it is not always obvious to combine these common aspects to render an AI-based medical device invention unpatentable.Continue Reading PTAB finds Artificial Intelligence (AI) Medical Device Patent not so Obvious

PatentNext Summary: Artificial Intelligence (AI) systems are expected to increasingly provide automated decisions impacting, for example, home ownership, job recruitment, and other important life events. In this way, such AI systems have the power to impact a wide variety of people and should be trained in a manner that eliminates bias and promotes fairness. The White House has recently published a Blueprint for an AI Bill of Rights that seeks to acknowledge and address these potentially inherent ethical risks of AI systems. 
Continue Reading Ethical Considerations of Artificial Intelligence (AI) and the White House’s Blueprint for an AI Bill of Rights

PatentNext Summary: Virtual Reality (VR)-related patents are expected to rise with the onset of the Metaverse. Given that VR is fundamentally a software technology, how do courts review VR-related patents? Early cases show that courts will apply similar scrutiny as for other software-related technologies, where VR-related patents will need to satisfy current patent eligibility standards, e.g., by showing an “improvement” to underlying computing technology.  
Continue Reading Patenting Virtual Reality (VR) Inventions in the Age of the Metaverse

PatentNext Summary: In August 2022, the Federal Circuit in Thaler v. Vidal held that U.S. patent law requires a “human” inventor. In 1884, the U.S. Supreme Court in Burrow-Giles Lithographic Co. v. Sarony held that a human could be the “author” of a photograph. In both cases, a type of “machine” was used to produce an output. Namely, in Thaler a “creativity machine” (a type of Artificial Intelligence (AI)) output and conceived the subject matter of a patent application allegedly without human involvement. In Burrow-Giles a camera output (captured) a photograph, but with human involvement (i.e., the photographer selected and arranged the scene of the photograph). While the Thaler court found that a machine alone cannot be an inventor, it raised the possibility of AI-assisted inventorship that included human involvement (e.g., sole or joint inventorship). Future courts considering the issue of AI inventorship could find the 1884 case of Burrow-Giles instructive, where the photographer’s selection and arrangement for the scene of a photograph in 1884 provides a useful analogy to a modern-day human AI developer’s selection and arrangement of training data, hyperparameters, or other features typically required to train and/or use an AI model.
Continue Reading The Curious Case of Burrow-Giles Lithographic (an 1884 U.S. Supreme Court decision involving “new” camera technology), and how it could help Shape Today’s Thinking on Artificial Intelligence (AI) Inventorship

PatentNext Summary: The Legal Board of Appeal (the “Board”) of the European Patent Office (EPO) recently suggested that the owner of an artificial intelligence (AI) machine could possibly be listed as an inventor of an AI-generated Invention. This suggestion arguably opens the door for companies or individuals, who own or use AI-generating machines, to designate themselves (instead of the AI machine) as the “inventor” on a patent application, even where the invention was wholly conceived by the AI machine itself.
Continue Reading European Patent Office (EPO) Suggests that the Owner of an Artificial Intelligence (AI) Machine Could be Listed as the Inventor of an AI-Generated Invention