2/4/11 Homework (kyergler) : Critique of Graham case

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Graham v. John Deere

Supporting Non-obviousness

There are two main points in the '798 patent that set it apart from prior art: 1) the vastly superior flexing qualities, and the complete position reversal of the shank and hinge plate compared to '811. Someone not educated in the art of plowing may not see the significant advantage of the '798 patent versus the '811 patent and Glencoe clamp device, but an expert in the field cannot deny the huge advantages that come out of the increase in flex. Along with the novelty of the device, there could arguably a long-felt need that was satisfied with this. Many plow tips have been damaged or destroyed due a device without any give, and this device satisfies this need appropriately. Thus, the device satisfies section 103.

Supporting Invalidity

The difference between the '811 patent and the '798 patent, according to the patent drawings, is the placement of the bolt hinge, and slight organizational arrangements surrounding the hinge. For all intensive purposes, both patents accomplish the same goal using the same technique, the only difference is a mild upgrade that more fully takes advantage of the bolt hinge on the plow. Considering the fact that '811 is prior art in this situation, the progression from '811 to '798 is well within the realm of obviousness for someone knowledgeable in the art of plowing. The '798 patent is one of novelty, but it is certainly not beyond the logical progression of tools from the '811 patent. The Glencoe clamping device (pantent not found online) is the most threatening patent to be used as a "prior art" against the validity of the '798 patent. The '798 patent contains all the mechanical elements of the Glencoe clamping device and followed the same mechanical operation as the Glencoe device. The difference between them is the position of the shank and hinge plate (opposite places), but the mechanical operation is exactly the same. Making note of the secondary considerations, there was no considerable economic advantage or long-felt need that compensates for how much prior art is imitated in the '798 patent. As a result, the patent does not satisfy section 103.