Basic Steps to Defensible (and Worthwhile) Patents

In light of next class’s focus on patents, here is an article guiding entrepreneurs through a three-step process regarding patenting an invention or idea. Although the entire article is helpful, I found the most interesting part to be step 1: “determine if your idea is marketable.” The author asserts that “[a]bout 97 percent of all patents never generate enough revenue to pay for themselves.” This statistic surprised me, and made me think about the issue in a way that I never had before.¬†First, entrepreneurs must engage in a cost-benefit analysis as to whether or not to even file the patent in the first place.

The author also includes several practical tips as to timing. For example, he suggests that entrepreneurs take their time to file their first non-provisional patent, lest they miss something important in their rush to file. I found this to be an interesting perspective, especially considering that the U.S. has switched to first-to-file per the America Invents Act.

Overall, I found this to be a helpful read, bringing an entrepreneurial perspective to the patent application process.

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