Patent News from the Holiday Week

Last week, we in the United States celebrated the Fourth of July, which landed right in the middle of the week on Wednesday. Having a national holiday on a Wednesday typically leads to many taking vacation time and creating their own very long holiday weekend. So while you were away, or perhaps distracted by the scalding hot heat that more than half of the United States suffered from, there were a number of noteworthy patent stories. Yes, decision makers and deal makers did not take a break last week. Not by a long shot.

So while you were otherwise occupied, what did you miss? Here is a run down of five of the most noteworthy stories from last week.


1. WIPO Under Fire For Sending Computers to UN Sanctioned Countries

Earlier this year, the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) came under fire for sending computers to North Korea in violation of United Nations sanctions. See WIPO Embroiled in North Korean Computer Deal. Now WIPO is under fire again. It seems they not only shipped computers to North Korea, but also shipped computers to Iran as well. Congresswoman Zoe Lofgren (D-CA) called this latest WIPO transgression “an outrage.” The United States Department of State is attempting to work with WIPO to make sure that new procedures are put into place to ensure this never happens again.


Challenges to 5 Ronald Katz Telephone Patents, Among the Reexamination Requests Filed the Week of December 19, 2011

Here is our latest weekly installment of Reexamination Requests from Scott Daniels, of Reexamination Alert and Practice Center Contributor…

Perhaps more than any other inventor, Ronald Katz has been the target of rivals’ requests for reexamination.  This was certainly true this past week, when requests were filed against five Katz telephone system patents (see ex parte Request Nos. (1), (3) to (5) & (10)).  According to Patent Office assignment records, the five patents are owned by General Electric Capital.

Vicor requested reexamination of a SynQor power converter patent (see inter partes Request No. (5)).  Synqor has sued a number of companies, including Ericsson, for infringement of that patent.

And Ford has requested reexamination of a GM patent for a car body structure, specifically a roof panel-side frame construction (see inter partes Request No. (3)).


Hewlett-Packard Reexamination Request Of Princeton Digital Patent Among Requests Filed Week of 8/8/11

Here is the latest installment of Reexamination Requests from Scott Daniels, of Reexamination Alert and Practice Center Contributor…

Hewlett-Packard has sought reexamination of Princeton Digital’s U.S. Patent No. 4,813,056 for digital signals used in cameras, camcorders, copiers, scanners and various multifunction devices (see ex parte Request No. (7)).  The ‘056 patent, originally owned by General Electric, is the subject of two infringement actions by Princeton in the Eastern District of Texas, against a slew of consumer electronics companies including HPRicohKodak, andFujifilm.  Canon is reported this morning to have settled its case.

Garmin has requested reexamination of its own patent for a sports computer with GPS (see ex parte Request No. 6).  Presumably,Garmin is attempting to beat Bryton, whom Garmin has sued for infringement of that patent, to the punch.

Finally, there were reports over the weekend that Google had requested reexamination against two Lodsys patents – U.S. Patent Nos. 7,222,078 & 7,620,565 – that Lodsys has asserted against a large group of small makers of applications for Android®.  Google’s Requests, however, are not yet available. (more…)

Reexamination Requests Filed Weeks of 5/16/11 And 5/23/11

Here is the latest installment of Reexamination Requests from Scott Daniels, of Reexamination Alert and Practice Center Contributor….

Apple Attack On MONKEYmedia Audiovisual Patent, Among The Reexamination Requests Filed Week Of May 16, 2011

Last December, Apple defended itself against MONKEYmedia’s patent infringement allegations in the Western District of Texas, by requesting reexamination of two of MM’s streaming media patents-in-suit.  Applehas now sought reexamination of a third MM patent-in-suit (see inter partes Request No. (10)).

Reexamination was also requested by Xilinx for a circuits patent owned by Intellectual Ventures, but it is not clear from the PTO files whether the IV patent is the subject of any infringement litigation (see inter partes Request No. (8)).

And SemiLEDs Corporation has requested reexamination of a Group III nitride LED patent owned by Cree (see inter partes Request No. (7)). The companies are currently in litigation in the Middle District of North Carolina over that patent and four others. (more…)

Attack By ebay On Automatic Auction Patents, Among 28 Reexamination Requests Filed Week Of 3/28/11

Here is the latest installment of Reexamination Requests from Scott Daniels, of Reexamination Alert and Practice Center Contributor….

Late last year eBay was sued by XPRT for infringement of four patents claiming aspects for automatic auctioneering.  Last week, eBay requested inter partes reexamination of each of those patents (inter partes Request Nos. (2), (3), (4) & (8)).

There was also a race to the PTO.  On Monday Vorsteen Consulting filed a request for ex parte reexamination of its U.S. Patent No. 6,878,358 (that claims a process for removing mercury from flue gases), together with a preliminary amendment narrowing the original claims and adding 33 new claims (see ex parte Request No. (2)). The same day, a third party requested reexamination of the same patent (see inter partes Request No. (1)), presumably presenting a different perspective on the validity issue.

Last week also featured requests for reexamination of a number of medical/biotechnical patents, including commercially significant patents claiming adipose-derived stem cells (inter parte sRequest No.(6) and methods for treating cancer with hyaluronic acid and NSAIDS (ex parteRequest No. 13). (more…)