Diamond v. Diehr, 450 U.S. 175 (1981) Notes

From Bill Goodwine's Wiki
Jump to navigationJump to search

dissenters say in the past we havent allowed this in past, so dont do it now

majority says not patenting a mathematical formula, etc, but rather a process that is statutory

converting synthetic rubber into cured precision products

need to know when to open molding press

  • already had mathematical representation
  • didnt have accurate way of knowing temp inside press to plug into equation and thus get desired result
  • so patent is process of constantly measuring temp, and using computer program to say when to open press

REJECTED by PTO - claims drawn to nonstatutory subject matter CCPA Reverses, says patentable

  • not patenting a mathematical formula, but a process that uses it
  • for patent, formula must be applied in performing a patentable function

not unpatentable JUST BECAUSE uses a computer program, which is what patent office that rejected it said

  • these guys wanted patent on a NEW PROCESS that employed mathematical formula, etc. not a patent just on the formula

in '52 changed "art" to "process" in code

  • process defined as
    • mode of treatment of certain materials to produce a given result. It is an act, or a series of acts, performed upon the subject-matter to be transformed and reduced to a different state or thing.
    • “Transformation and reduction of an article ‘to a different state or thing’ is the clue to the patentability of a process claim that does not include particular machines.”

-too narrow, could still provide economic incentive despite not being physical material change

decision based on precedent - may be outdated for new technologies

copyright used for comp programs

  • lasts life of author + 50 yrs
  • weaker

DISSENT (4 judges)

they want to take apart new part of the process from whats old, which is (they say) just a method of calculating time, doesnt add to process

comp program can be part of something patentable but not in this case

taking out program leaves a process that is not patentable, not new

mental steps can't be patentable

angry at CCPA for ignoring precedent of court