FACEBOOK, INC. (Menlo Park, CA)

A user of an instant messaging service may save names of users of the instant messaging system in a participant list (which may be referred to as”buddy list”) “buddy list”) and these names could be classified into one or more groups. Additionally, users of a mobile device like a mobile phone can store contact information regarding people who are on the device. Information describing the on-line existence of the user in the instant messaging system, or the geographic location of a mobile device such as a mobile telephone connected to the user’s account, can be distributed to people who are on the participant list as well as contacts on the list based upon notification information that is associated with contact lists or groups of users. The delegation model can be employed to control whether a user is permitted to make modifications to the notification information.

On-line services could provide users with the ability to instantly send and receive messages. Instant messages are private on-line conversations between two or more people who have access to an instant messaging service, who have installedcommunications software necessary to access and use the instant messaging service, and who generally have access to information reflecting the on-line status of other users.

One reason is that delegation information associated to a communications identity could be used to alter the notification settings information to limit the distribution of notification information related to the identity of communication. Delegation information that is associated with a communication identity can be accessible. Different categories of communications identities can be included in information about delegation. For at least one of the multiple categories, notificationinformation modifications to be controlled are identified. A communications identity that is associated with a particular category within multiplecategories receives notification information in order to modify the notification setting information. The delegation information that is linked to the category is available and the identity of the communications can either perform the modification or prevent it from happening.

A number of these features may be integrated into implementations. For example that at least two categories from the various categories could be arranged in a hierarchical arrangement so that a lower category may be related to a higher category.Delegation information that is associated with the higher category may also be associated with the lower category. Likewise, the identity of the communications provider could be associated with the category below. Modifications to the notification setting information is onlypermitted in the event that the communications identity is allowed to carry out the modification based on an assessment of whether the identity of the communications is permitted to perform the change based upon the information about delegation associated with the higher category.

The various categories could include a category for government, an equipment owner category, and the user category. The equipment owner category could include a business , and the user category may include an employee. Equipment owner category can include a parent, whereas the user category could comprise a child.

Only a user belonging to the government can modify the notification settings for notifying an organization that offers emergency services within the area of the user. Users who belong to the category of equipment owner is allowed to make a modification other than an alteration that is in connection with the modification of the notification setting information relatedto notifying a governmental entity providing emergency services about the geographic location of the user. A user who is part of a user category is only allowed to make a change that is authorized by the equipment owner category.

Controlling dissemination of notification information could include limiting or allowing information about the ability of the communications identity that is used to communicate, or the geographic location of the communications identity.

The techniques described above may include a method or process, a device or apparatus or computer software on a computer-accessible medium.

The details of any or all of the implementations are provided in the accompanying drawings and description below. Additional features will be obvious from the drawings and the claims.

Click here to view the patent on USPTO website.

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What is a patent?

Patents are granted by the government in order to protect an invention. It grants the inventor the sole right to develop, utilize and sell the idea. Society gains when new technology is brought to the market. These benefits could be directly realized by people who are able to achieve previously impossible feats, or indirectly through the economic opportunities that innovation provides (business expansion, job creation).

A lot of pharmaceutical firms and university researchers are seeking patent protection for their research and development. Patents are granted for the creation of a product, process or method for making new materials. In order to be granted protection under a patent an invention has to be novel, useful, and not obvious to other people in the same field.

Patents are a way to give inventors a reward for commercially successful inventions. They act as a motivator for inventors to come up with new ideas. Small companies and inventors can rest sure that they will earn an income from their investment in technology advancement through patents. They can earn money from their work.

Patents play essential roles in companies, and they can:

Secure the latest products and services;

Increase the value, visibility, and attractiveness of your products on the market

Your business and your products should be distinguished from the rest;

Get technical and business information.

Avoid the risk of accidentally using proprietary third-party content, or losing valuable data, original outputs, or other creative output.

Patents convert knowledge of the inventor into a valuable asset which opens up new opportunities to create jobs by licensing joint ventures and joint ventures.

Small companies that have patent protection will be more attractive to investors in the development and commercialization of technology.

Patenting can generate fresh ideas and innovative inventions. These information may be protected by patents.

Patents can serve as a deterrent for non-trustworthy third parties who profit from an invention’s successes.

The profits from technology patents that are successful and commercially viable can be used to fund technological research and development (R&D), which will improve the chances of developing better technology in the coming years.

You can use intellectual property ownership to convince investors and lenders that your product has real commercial value. Sometimes, one powerful patent can lead to multiple financing opportunities. Patents can be used along with other IP assets as collateral or security to secure financing. You can also show investors your patent assets to boost the value of your business. Forbes and other publications have pointed out that each patent can increase the value of a company by anything from $500,000 to $1 Million.

A well-constructed business plan is essential for start-ups. It must be based on IP and demonstrate what your service or product stands out. Additionally, investors will be impressed if you demonstrate that your IP rights are secure or are in the process of becoming secure and that they are in line with your business plan.

It is crucial to keep your invention secret until you apply for patent protection. The public divulging an invention could be detrimental to its novelty and invalidate it. Therefore, prior filing disclosures (e.g., for test-marketing investors, test-marketing, or for other business partners) must only be done upon signing a confidentiality contract.

There are many types of patents. Knowing them is essential to safeguard your invention. Patents for utility are used to protect new processes and machine creations. Design patents cover ornamental designs. Patents that cover utility designs are the best as they protect the proprietor from copycats and other competition. Most often, utility patents are issued for alterations or improvements to existing inventions. Utility patents also cover improvements and changes to existing inventions. For example, a process patent covers actions or methods of performing one specific thing, while chemical compositions will comprise an assortment of components.

How long does a patent last? Patents that are utility-related last for 20 years from the initial date of filing, however their expirations can be extended because of patent office delays such as.

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Patent searches are essential when you’re working on your patent application. This will enable you to see different ideas and give you insights into their work. You’ll be able to narrow down the nature of your idea. It is also possible to discover the current state of the art within the field you’re inventing. This will assist you in comprehend the scope of your invention and help prepare you for filing the patent application.

How to Search for Patents

The first step in getting your patent is to conduct an internet search for patents. You can do a google patent search or do a USPTO search. Patent-pending refers to the product covered by the patent application. You can use the public pair to find the patent application. Once the patent office approves the application, you will be able to conduct a patent number search to locate the patent, and your product has now been granted a patent. In addition to the USPTO search engine, you may also use other search engines, such as espacenet, which is described below. For assistance, you can consult an attorney who is a patent or patent attorney. In the US Patents are granted by the US patent and trademark office or the United States patent and trademark office, which is also responsible for examining trademark applications.

Are you interested in finding other similar patents? These are the steps to follow:

1. Create a list of terms for your invention in relation to its intended, composition, or use.

Write down a concise and precise description of the invention. Do not use generic terms such as “device,” “process,” and “system.” Instead, think about synonyms for the terms you initially chose. Then, take note of important technical terms and keywords.

Utilize the following questions to help you determine the keywords or concepts.

  • What’s the purpose of this invention? Is it a utilitarian device or an ornamental design?
  • Is invention a way to make something or carry out a function? Is it an item?
  • What is the composition and function of the invention? What is the physical makeup of the invention?
  • What’s the objective of the invention?
  • What are the technical terms and keywords that describe the nature of an invention? A technical dictionary can help you locate the right terms.

2. Utilize these terms to find relevant Cooperative Patent Classifications on the Classification Text Search Tool. If you’re unable to determine the correct classification to describe your invention, go through the classification’s class Schemas (class schedules). If you don’t see any results using the Classification Text Search, you may consider substituting the words that describe your invention with synonyms.

3. Go through the CPC Classification Definition to verify the accuracy of the CPC classification that you’ve located. The hyperlink to a CPC classification definition is available in the event that the title of the classification is a blue square with a “D” to its left. CPC classification definitions will assist you in determining the classification’s scope of application so that you can choose the most relevant. They may also provide some search tips or other recommendations which could prove useful in further research.

4. Retrieve patent documents with the CPC classification from the Patents Full-Text and Image Database. You can search and select the relevant patent publications initially focusing on abstract and the drawings that are representative.

5. This selection of patent publications is the best to check for similarity to your idea. Pay attention to the specification and claims. Refer to the applicant and patent examiner for any additional patents.

6. You can retrieve patent applications published in the public domain that meet the CPC classification you selected in Step 3. It is also possible to use the same search strategy that you employed in step 4 to limit your search results to only the most relevant patent applications by reviewing the abstracts and drawings on every page. The next step is to review all published patent applications carefully, paying special attention to the claims as well as other drawings.

7. Find additional US patent publications by keywords in the PatFT or AppFT databases, classification searching of non-U.S. patents per below, and searching non-patent literature disclosures of inventions using internet search engines. Here are some examples:

  • Add keywords to your search. Keyword searches may turn up documents that are not well-categorized or have missed classifications during Step 2. For example, US patent examiners often supplement their classification searches with keyword searches. Think about the use of technical engineering terminology rather than everyday words.
  • Search for foreign patents using the CPC classification. Then, re-run the search using international patent office search engines such as Espacenet, the European Patent Office’s worldwide patent publication database of over 130 million patent publications. Other national databases include:
  • Search non-patent literature. Inventions can be made public in many non-patent publications. It is recommended that you search journals, books, websites, technical catalogs, conference proceedings, and other print and electronic publications.

To review your search, you can hire a registered patent attorney to assist. A preliminary search will help one better prepare to talk about their invention and other related inventions with a professional patent attorney. In addition, the attorney will not spend too much time or money on patenting basics.