Monday, April 1, 2013

Design Patent Links

Aside from the Federal Circuit’s decision in In re Owens, which we covered last week, it was a fairly quiet week in design patent law. However, this week promises to bring plenty of design patent news from Stanford’s Design Patents in the Modern World conference, which takes place on Friday and Saturday of this week. Here are the design patent links from the past week! 

According to the law firm of Smith & Hopen, USPTO hiring for design patent examiners has remained flat since 2008, whereas the number of examiners for utility patents has increased by 32% over that same period. This despite the fact that design applications rose by 14%. 

ComputerWorld noted the 13 design patents for the Microsoft surface that were recently issued by the PTO. Microsoft’s new design patents cover several aspects of the Surface, including its signature keyboard/covers.

Sarah Burstein, Associate Professor of Law at the University of Oklahoma, provided her analysis of In re Owens in a guest post on Patently-O.

Professor Burstein will be among several design patent scholars presenting at Stanford’s design patent conference, “Design Patents in the Modern World.” The conference is scheduled to take place this Friday and Saturday 4/5-4/6. Professor Andrew Torrance of the University of Kansas School of Law will also be presenting a paper co-authored by myself entitled “(R)evolution in Design Patent Subject Matter: The Shifting Meaning of ‘Article of Manufacture.’” The conference is open to the public. Any design patent enthusiasts planning to attend should register here.

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