What Can Be Patented?

Inventions fall into one of several categories, and may qualify under more than one category. For example, an invention may be a new machine, as well as a process for integrating it with other machines. The machine should be patented separately from the process. Other inventions include software processes, special configurations of machines, and novel arrangements of steps. Often, multiple categories apply to a single invention, making it impossible to patent all of its parts.


There are three main requirements for patentability. To be patented, an invention must be demonstrably different from prior art. Not all aspects of an invention need to be novel; incremental improvements to a known process or product can be patented as well. Patentable innovations must also have a high degree of utility. These improvements must be more useful than similar products or processes. Moreover, the invention must not be obvious to a person of ordinary skill. The best way to demonstrate non-obviousness is to present examples of how the invention improves upon or enables a new use of an existing product or technique.

There are many benefits to patenting an invention. A patent protects your invention and prevents others from copying, selling, or importing it. In exchange, the inventor receives exclusive intellectual property rights to the invention. In addition to protecting your invention, patenting it protects others from using it, renting, providing, or making it available to others. Regardless of the benefits of patenting your invention, it is vital to understand the process to ensure its success.

In addition to the benefits of patenting an idea, patenting an invention has many drawbacks. In addition to being inconvenient, many inventions are not patent-eligible. For example, a computer’s graphics processing unit may not have a significant impact in the real world, and its computations are not closely tied to its functionality. In this case, the invention’s company may choose to conduct a defensive publication to protect its interests and prevent competitors from getting a patent on the invention.

Another common barrier to patenting an idea is the existence of a trade secret. For example, an invention may be based on a mathematical control system that allows a computer to control drill bits. The numerical control system is a trade secret and the inventor hopes to patent the entire invention. Does a patented numerical control system have to be disclosed in order to be patented? In White Consolidated Industries v. Vega Servo-Control, the Federal Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that disclosure of trade secrets is necessary to protect a patent.

Industrial designs

You can patent industrial designs if you think you have a product that is both useful and attractive. These designs can be registered for a fee and are available to license to others. The industrial design registration process is more stringent and expensive than trademark registration, but it does represent higher standards. The cost is well worth the benefits. Industrial designs can be used to create a variety of products and businesses. In Canada, you can register your industrial designs.

In order to protect your industrial design, it must be both original and novel. The laws on what counts as novel vary by country, but generally speaking, new designs are those that have not yet been made public. They must also be distinct from designs that are already known. Industrial design registrations are granted by the office of intellectual property. You may be able to register your industrial design yourself, or appoint an agent. If you’re planning on patenting your design, keep in mind that the cost of the application and prosecution will depend on the complexity of your design.

WIPO’s treaties govern industrial design registration in international trade. The WIPO Lex database is an invaluable source of legal information on IP. It contains WIPO-administered IP treaties and leading judicial decisions. If you’re wondering where to file your industrial design, there’s no better place to start than WIPO’s global IP database, WIPO Lex. WIPO’s Standing Committee on the Law of Trademarks and Industrial Designs (SCT) is a global forum for substantive discussions on industrial design. The SCT promotes harmonization and collaboration among WIPO member states, as well as normative legal work.

There are various reasons to patent your industrial design. For instance, industrial design protects the visual aspects of your finished articles. Its shape, configuration, pattern, ornament, and user interface features can all be protected. Moreover, industrial designs are valuable in terms of commercial value. Therefore, they are a good investment. It is vital to protect these features for the protection of your product. The benefits of industrial design registration are numerous.


Although there are many misconceptions about software patents, the truth is that software can be patented. In the US, software can be patented if it is described as an “invention” under the patent laws. However, the ambiguous term “software” may be interpreted differently in different jurisdictions. It may refer to a computer program listing written in a programming language, to a binary code loaded into a computer-based apparatus, or to accompanying documentation.

While software can be patented, not all computer programs qualify for patent protection. For instance, software that simply plays songs may not qualify as an invention under U.S. patent law or the European Patent Convention. Software that improves manufacturing processes or data processing can qualify for patent protection. Generally, the patent office allows the granting of licenses for patented work as long as the licensee agrees to the terms in writing. Moreover, the patent application process can take years.

The process of patenting software varies from jurisdiction to jurisdiction, although many countries have embraced it as a viable option. Software patents are granted regularly and have gained popularity over the past few decades. Software patents have become a staple of the U.S. patent system, as more digital processing is now being used. Nonetheless, the rules surrounding software patents are complicated and often controversial. In this article, we will discuss how to proceed in a software patent application.

The patenting process can be arduous and complex, and you should consider hiring a patent attorney for your software invention. Make sure that your patent is strong enough to withstand a challenge in any jurisdiction. Make sure that your software is written by an experienced patent attorney who is familiar with software laws. And don’t forget that software patents require rigorous testing. You need to make sure that the software is sufficiently innovative and useful in the marketplace to warrant a patent.

Materials for atomic weapons

Patenting materials used in building atomic weapons may seem like a strange concept. But the fact is that it is a legitimate way for the US Government to protect national security. While it is true that the Atomic Energy Act of 1954 prohibits the patenting of any invention that uses atomic energy, that does not mean it cannot be patented. Under patent law, the subject matter of an invention must be “useful” or operative. Specifically, a machine that does not function as intended is not operative and thus cannot be patented.

If the United States is concerned about the proliferation of atomic weapons, it is likely to protect these materials. Under patent laws, companies that develop nuclear weapons may be allowed to patent the materials they use. The Commission must also report all information about fissionable materials and atomic energy to the Attorney General. However, a license can’t be issued for any activity that takes place outside the United States, including activities that benefit foreign governments. In addition, licenses cannot be granted for materials that would adversely affect the common defense.

As a result, the ability of an atom to create a high-energy particle is a key factor in the development of atomic weapons. These materials must be completely safe and reusable. To protect our security, we must patent them. Fortunately, the process is relatively simple and can be patented. The inventors of the material must provide proof of their use in military weapons. The materials used in the creation of an atomic bomb are often highly sensitive.

Perpetual motion machines

Patentable perpetual motion machines are essentially closed loops that produce more energy than they consume. Originally, the USPTO thought such a machine was impossible. Instead of water moving up and down, buoyancy forces the water to remain at the bottom. As the water moves up and down, it rotates, generating electricity. The machine uses this energy to produce electricity. However, this invention has faced legal challenges. In some cases, the patent process has been stalled due to a lack of working prototypes.

One of the main hindrances to perpetual motion machines is the inefficiency of these devices. Some inventors have made claims to perpetual motion without violating the thermodynamic laws, but the law applies in any case. While there are no proven perpetual motion machines, some inventors claim that they’re capable of producing useful energy. In other words, they’re inventing a machine that can produce more energy than it consumes.

The first step in patenting a perpetual motion machine is to identify the underlying principles. In general, perpetual motion machines are ineffective because they violate the first and second laws of thermodynamics. By defining entropy as a measure of energy and work, perpetual motion machines violate the first and second laws of thermodynamics. Consequently, they’re unlikely to work. But they could do a lot of work, so they’re worth pursuing.

As a general rule, gravity-based perpetual motion machines must have a counterbalance of forces that create lift. A patentable perpetual motion machine that employs buoyancy as a prime mover has been granted a U.S. Patent and Trademark Office patent. In fact, the patents were granted because of its magic. And buoyancy is still one of the most common misunderstood phenomena. It has managed to sway patent examiners into allowing perpetual motion patents.