Online fantasy sports games, such as fantasy football, baseball, hockey, golf, and automobile racing, are extremely popular. In fact, this past weekend marks the start of the playoffs in my fantasy football league. Unfortunately, I did not make the playoffs this year. Darn injuries and under-performing “superstars”!!!
In any event, it is not at all uncommon to file fantasy sports related patents and patent applications. I myself have had occasion to draft a patent application (soon to be allowed) on a fantasy sports invention. So, a fantasy sports-related patent or application always grabs my attention.
If you are not familiar with fantasy sports, allow me to provide a bit of a primer. A user creates a fantasy team comprised of players that are associated with real-life players. The user’s fantasy team may compete against fantasy teams of other users, with specific scoring rules. When your player does something good, such as scores a touchdown or kicks a field goal, positive points are scored. When your player does something negative in real life, such as an fumble or throws an interception, points are subtracted.
Last month, the United States Patent and Trademark Office issued U.S. Patent No. 8,566,362, titled Method and system for versioned file system using structured data representations. As the title implies, this invention purports to provide the ability to create a versioned file system from the object-based storage infrastructure of public cloud storage providers.
When deployed at scale, object storage systems are cost-effective, stable and highly available; therefore, they are well suited to the needs of the large Web companies that operate them. Unfortunately, until now, object storage was not well adapted to handle changes quickly or in a consistent manner, which makes the technology unsuitable for data center infrastructure in its raw form. Thus, it was necessary to bridge the gap by leveraging local snapshots to create a direct mapping between a high-performance file system and a series of immutable versions of the file system that are then committed to the object store.
According to Andres Rodriguez, CEO of Nasuni, which is the owner of the ’362 patent, the goal when the company set out to develop a versioned cloud based object-based storage system was to “consolidate all of the storage functions into a simple service offering… The era of glorified hardware boxes is coming to an end. It is too expensive to keep up with the sheer growth in data and the need to have that data protected and available everywhere. Enlightened IT organizations are thinning their data centers and leading the charge towards a new era where simple appliances offer direct access to the vast resources that are available in the cloud.”
Actavis PLC (NYSE: ACT) recently filed an Abbreviated New Drug Application (ANDA) with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) seeking approval to market Testosterone Topical Solution, 30mg/1.5mL. Actavis’ ANDA product is a generic version of Eli Lilly and Company’s Axiron®, which is an androgen indicated for replacement therapy in males for conditions associated with a deficiency or absence of endogenous testosterone.
Eli Lilly and Company and Acrux DDS Pty Ltd. filed suit against Actavis on November 12, 2013, in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Indiana seeking to prevent Actavis from commercializing its ANDA product prior to the expiration of certain of its U.S. patents. The lawsuit was filed under the provisions of the Hatch-Waxman Act, resulting in a stay of final FDA approval of Actavis’ ANDA for up to 30 months from the date the plaintiffs received notice of Actavis’ ANDA filing or until final resolution of the matter before the court, whichever occurs sooner, subject to any other exclusivities.
Over the last several years, I have given the ethics lecture part of PLI’s Patent Law Institute, which grants those in attendance (or viewing via webcast, in most states) one ethics credit toward CLE compliance. This year, I will once again give the ethics presentation at the 8th Annual Patent Law Institute sponsored by the Practising Law Institute, which will take place in New York at the beginning of February 2014, and which will be reprised live in San Francisco in mid-March 2014. Materials are due early so that PLI can put everything into book form for attendees, so I have been writing to ensure enough to support one credit hour of CLE, and starting the planning of my hour-long presentation generally.
A big part of what I like to do when I give an ethics lecture is to review recent decisions of the Office of Enrollment and Discipline to see what OED has been focusing on and what trouble our fellow members of the patent bar are getting into. This not only gives us insight into the OED approach, but also gives us an opportunity to review the ethics rules practitioners are charged most frequently with violating. It also gives us an opportunity to discuss the process you will be afforded if you should find yourself on the wrong side of an OED complaint.
TransData Inc., a manufacturer of advanced solid-state electricity meters, recently announced that it entered into the first licensing agreements to its wireless smart electric meter patent portfolio, consisting of U.S. Patent Nos. 6,181,294; 6,462,713; and 6,903,699 (the “Smart Meter Patents”). The ’713 patent is a continuation of the ’294 patent, and the ’699 patent is a continuation-in-part of the ’713 patent, which in part entitles it to the priority date of the ’294 patent, which is at least as early as its original filing date of March 17, 1998.
11.11.13 | posts | Gene Quinn
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