"I Built a Better Mousetrap"-- Advice on Protecting Your Creation With a U.S. Patent

Written by Larry Denton

So, you built a better mousetrap. Now, how do your protect your "perfect" creation from being stolen by a Fortune 500 company? The answer lies inrepparttar United States Constitution which givesrepparttar 105609 U.S. Congress exclusive authority to grant patents for inventions. Patents on new inventions are not an automatic right. Instead, an inventor must apply and be granted a patent byrepparttar 105610 U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO), an agency ofrepparttar 105611 U.S. Department of Commerce. The process is long, laborious and very time-consuming. How do you startrepparttar 105612 tedious process?

A U.S. patent is basically a contract between an inventor andrepparttar 105613 government. The U.S. patent laws were written to provide an incentive to inventors to create and publicly disclose their inventions. In exchange for full disclosure of an invention,repparttar 105614 government grantsrepparttar 105615 inventorrepparttar 105616 right to exclude others from making, selling or importingrepparttar 105617 patented invention.

There are three types of patents, they are: 1) utility patents which protectrepparttar 105618 way an article is used and works; 2) design patents which protectsrepparttar 105619 way an article looks; and 3) plant patents issued for asexually reproducing plants. In order to be patentable, an invention must useful, novel (new), and non-obvious--meaning that when viewed as a whole,repparttar 105620 invention must not have been simply an obvious improvement inrepparttar 105621 invention's field when viewed by one of ordinary skill in that particular field.

The patent application process generally involves three steps. First,repparttar 105622 person (or corporation) seekingrepparttar 105623 patent must file an application withrepparttar 105624 Patent Office. In addition to including a detailed description of how to make and userepparttar 105625 invention,repparttar 105626 application must include patent claims--statements that definerepparttar 105627 scope ofrepparttar 105628 invention whichrepparttar 105629 inventor is attempting to protect. Oncerepparttar 105630 application has been filed, a patent examiner will be assigned to reviewrepparttar 105631 claims andrepparttar 105632 rest ofrepparttar 105633 application.

The second phase ofrepparttar 105634 process begins withrepparttar 105635 patent examiner performing a "novelty search"--checking prior patents, and allrepparttar 105636 available literature to determine whetherrepparttar 105637 invention is really novel and non-obvious. Duringrepparttar 105638 course ofrepparttar 105639 patent application process,repparttar 105640 patent examiner andrepparttar 105641 inventor (or his attorney) will communicate back and forth with one another to determine novelty and answer additional questions which may arise.

Some Thoughts about getting Tough...

Written by Terry Dashner

Some Thoughts about getting Tough…

Terry Dashner…………………………Faith Fellowship Church PO Box 1586 Broken Arrow, OK 74013

I spentrepparttar decade ofrepparttar 105608 1990s in law enforcement. I was a police officer in Tulsa, OK until 2003 when I retired. As a police officer, I spentrepparttar 105609 1990s learningrepparttar 105610 pros and cons of Community Policing. The term essentially defines policing by a proactive means, getting torepparttar 105611 root cause ofrepparttar 105612 crime problem and solving it by enlistingrepparttar 105613 help of all community resources—neighborhoods, schools, community service agencies, churches, politicians, and media.

Policing is still undergoing transformation from reactive policing—running from call to call without getting torepparttar 105614 heart ofrepparttar 105615 crime problem—to a proactive, community policing. To this day policing philosophies weigh in heavily toward one orrepparttar 105616 other. Onrepparttar 105617 one hand it's community policing and onrepparttar 105618 other it's old fashion policing—catch them, lock ‘em up, and get back onrepparttar 105619 streets. Both philosophies have strong and weak points, but usually Community Policing generatesrepparttar 105620 most heated discussion. Why? Because it givesrepparttar 105621 appearance that law enforcement personnel are soft on crime and cops don’t want to be perceived as being soft, but tough.

Does toughness in law enforcement work to reduce crime? Let’s look at some ofrepparttar 105622 current research. Again I quote heavily from Mona Charen’s book, Do-Gooders (Sentinel 2004). She has done her home work and is to be commended for her fine read. Says Mona, “Thanks to self-described do-gooders, America went on a compassion binge inrepparttar 105623 1960s. The compassion was extended towardrepparttar 105624 poor and minorities; unfortunately, amongrepparttar 105625 prime beneficiaries of this tenderness were violent criminals who would go on to terrorizerepparttar 105626 very poor neighborhoods whose well-being liberals supposedly sought.

“An early signal ofrepparttar 105627 sixties’ laxity could be found inrepparttar 105628 statistics on punishment. In 1950,repparttar 105629 expected punishment for murder and negligent manslaughter was 2.3 years in prison. By 1970, this had dropped to 1.7 years. Liberal academics and public intellectuals persuadedrepparttar 105630 nation that we needed to addressrepparttar 105631 “root causes” of crime such as poverty and injustice.”

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