Intellectual Property Forum The Intellectual Property Forum

Please login or register.

Login with username, password and session length
Advanced search  

News:

New registrations are now permitted.

Pages: 1 [2] 3

Author Topic: Patent Drawings  (Read 8443 times)

gregm170

  • Guest
Re: Patent Drawings
« Reply #15 on: 09-17-05 at 02:12 am »

When doing the spec and the drawings, I often label similar elements with letter and numbers (i.e. 10a, 10b, etc.).  My question is whether or not anyone has had problems with this in US or foreign filings.  I have not, but some attorneys I have done work for swear up and down that its inappropriate.  

Also, has anyone had any problems with lead lines.  For example, the MPEP states that a floating arrow signifies a section and a lead line touching an element signifies a surface.  I've seen attorneys ignore this convention and they seem to get away with it on a regular basis.  It seems like this convention is not strictly enforced.  

Thanks in advance.  

Greg L. Martinez
SolidStateIP
www.solidstateip.com
Logged

gregm170

  • Guest
Re: Patent Drawings
« Reply #16 on: 09-17-05 at 02:13 am »

When doing the spec and the drawings, I often label similar elements with letter and numbers (i.e. 10a, 10b, etc.).  My question is whether or not anyone has had problems with this in US or foreign filings.  I have not, but some attorneys I have done work for swear up and down that its inappropriate.  

Also, has anyone had any problems with lead lines.  For example, the MPEP states that a floating arrow signifies a section and a lead line touching an element signifies a surface.  I've seen attorneys ignore this convention and they seem to get away with it on a regular basis.  It seems like this convention is not strictly enforced.  

Thanks in advance.  

Greg L. Martinez
SolidStateIP
www.solidstateip.com
Logged

Isaac

  • Lead Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 5207
    • View Profile
Re: Patent Drawings
« Reply #17 on: 09-17-05 at 05:22 am »

There is a document called "Guide for the Preparation of Patent Drawings" which is published by the GPO.  It goes into these questions and others in detail with examples.

I don't know if the reference is still available from the government, but the last time I googled for it, so downloadable copies turned up.  Get the most recent edition you can find.

I don't know if any reason why 10a, 10b, would be considered inappropriate or
undesirable in a US case.

One reason why people get away with informalities is that the
PTO does not use draftspeople to review drawings anymore.  Normally
the only pre-examination objections you will get are for improper
margins.  Sometimes that problem is caused by the person scanning your
drawings.

Many examiners won't spend much time reviewing/objecting to drawings
unless the problems are glaring or create problems for them in
understanding your application.  There is not much training on the
detailed concerns with drawings anyway.

Lead lines are supposed to touch a part.  A floating arrow has
several possible uses including pointing to a whole object or section
when you are also using lead lines to touch a part of the same
object.  I really would not be persuaded to ignore a rule because
your peers are getting away with it.  Getting the drawings done
right may matter to your clients at an important point such as
during litigation.
Logged
Isaac

JimIvey

  • Forum Moderator
  • Lead Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 7100
    • View Profile
    • IveyLaw -- Turning Caffeine into Patents(sm)
Re: Patent Drawings
« Reply #18 on: 09-17-05 at 10:51 am »

I'll admit (here in front of God and everybody) that I may be one of those who ignored the leadline issue.  However, my defense is that my specifications, in describing what the leadlines point to, are clear.

When it doubt, spell it out (in the spec).

It's good that you recognize potential ambiguity and/or vagueness.  Be sure to resolve those ambiguities and/or vaguenesses in the spec.

Re drawings generally, they're not even absolutely required -- only when "helpful" as I recall.  I'm inclined to opine that insufficiency of a drawing should not be sufficient to overcome any presumption of validity of an issued patent.  But I won't go that far today.  And, outright contradiction of the spec (or an introduction of ambiguity in the drawings not already present in the spec) might be a different story.

Regards.
Logged
--
James D. Ivey
Law Offices of James D. Ivey
http://www.iveylaw.com
Friends don't let friends file provisional patent applications.

gregm170

  • Guest
Re: Patent Drawings
« Reply #19 on: 09-18-05 at 02:13 am »

Ooops.  I'm not sure why I have multiple posts.   ??? Sorry about that.  It's even annoying to me.  

Thanks for they answers.  I think most of the problems I hear about are just personal preferences by different people and don't actually matter.  I've noticed in doing work for different attorneys that each has his own way of doing something and if you do it differently, then it must be wrong.  

To me its just different, but not necessarily wrong.  Maybe if you do the same thing long enough, you begin the think that its the right way of doing it.  

Greg L. Martinez
SolidStateIP
www.solidstateip.com
Logged

Isaac

  • Lead Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 5207
    • View Profile
Re: Patent Drawings
« Reply #20 on: 09-18-05 at 04:49 am »

Perhaps some of the more picky things are not important and the practioner would be advised to spend his time elsewhere, but there is a "right" way to do some of these things.

Rule 84 describes things like lead lines, the proper use of freestanding arrows, size of lettering,
etc.  Perhaps a practitioner doing his own drawings might not
spend much time on some details, but if I would certainly expect
a professional illustrator to get these things right, and in fact
the ones I've worked with have corrected informalities in the stuff I've
given to them.

But certainly some things are left up to the particular practioner
the rules say "numbers are preferred" for reference characters.
If some attorney mentoring or supervising you, or your firms guidelines
are to use numbers only, then I think energy spent fighting that
is not justifiable.
Logged
Isaac

gregm170

  • Guest
Re: Patent Drawings
« Reply #21 on: 09-30-05 at 12:53 am »

Mr. Clark said "I don't know if any reason why 10a, 10b, would be considered inappropriate or undesirable in a US case. "

Would using 10a, 10b, etc. be a problem in a PCT?

Greg L. Martinez
SolidStateIP
www.solidstateip.com




Logged

ChrisGegg

  • Newbie
  • *
  • Posts: 2
    • View Profile
    • Email
Re: Patent Drawings
« Reply #22 on: 10-05-05 at 03:16 pm »

Thanks to PatentDraftsman for starting this discussion.

I have one observation to add that all attorneys may want to consider and all draftspersons may want to use as encouragement for attorneys to file formal drawings when the application is originally filed.

Recently the USPTO has implemented a slightly different image scanning process which captures graphics ONLY in black and white, not greyscale which was only used for a short time period, but no longer uses.  And even if graphics look like they may be greyscale, look closely and you will notice that what your eyes see as greyscale actually is just stippling (pixellation of black dots).

So what does this mean?, what impact does the purely black and white scanning have?  Any drawings which are submitted that are not line drawings have a high chance of being seriously distorted.  In particular, any screen captures and digital images which are filed as informal drawings are likely to turn into entirely black blobs which provide the Examiner little or no opportunity to fairly and accurately examine your application.  (Check some of your PAIR drawings, you might be surprised that some are completely useless.)  And do not necessarily expect to receive a Notice to File Corrected Papers from the initial examination office, because they make their determination based on the actual paper documents which are filed, not the scanned documents.  Which means that the initial examination office does not know what the scan will look like, and does not typically issue a Notice to File Corrected Papers based on greyscale drawings, even though the scan of those greyscale drawings may not reproduce correctly.

Unfortunately, not all Examiners will follow MPEP guidance and immediately request corrected drawings.  Some Examiners will proceed with the black blobs on the electronic file wrapper and presume that what they have in front of them is what you provided for them to work with when examining the application.  This can present a serious problem when an examiner proceeds to examine a case without the benefit of drawings which can be interpreted.  And then you have the problem of establishing that the corrected drawings do not introduce new matter.  The Examiner has to request to review the originally filed materials so he/she can see that the corrected drawings actually reflect what was originally filed, but turned into black blobs when scanned.

So, a word of caution to anyone who ever files digital images or screen captures.  If the informal drawing has areas of similar brightness, regardless of colors shading, etc., the drawing should be prepared as a formal line drawing before filing.

Chris Gegg
Alston & Bird LLP
Logged
Chris Gegg
Alston & Bird, LLP
www.alston.com

JimIvey

  • Forum Moderator
  • Lead Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 7100
    • View Profile
    • IveyLaw -- Turning Caffeine into Patents(sm)
Re: Patent Drawings
« Reply #23 on: 10-10-05 at 10:44 am »

Your points are well-taken.  I'll offer a few tips re acceptable, if not formal, drawings.

First, I use OpenOffice.org which includes a draw program (free).  It's easy to use and I can produce nice black and white drawings almost as quickly as sketching by hand.  

Second, I frequently include screenshots (since I do a lot of software applications) and they can include shaded areas and/or color images.  Most screen shots translate nicely to black and white, but some require some modification.  I use gimp to convert it to a black and white outline using edge detection and some color space manipulation.  

Here's another interesting idea for handling color images: http://www.squaregear.net/gimptips/wood.shtml

I'll show you guys what I mean when some of my recent applications are published.

Regards,

Jim
Logged
--
James D. Ivey
Law Offices of James D. Ivey
http://www.iveylaw.com
Friends don't let friends file provisional patent applications.

Isaac

  • Lead Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 5207
    • View Profile
Re: Patent Drawings
« Reply #24 on: 10-10-05 at 11:05 am »

Jim,

One thing I find very interesting is your use of open source software to do your work.  The use of open document formats in particular has gotten some recent publicity with the Mass state government's initiative to require the use of document formats that do not have vendor lock in.

I'm not currently in a position to select my own tools...

Have you had any issues of note with respect to submitting patent applications electronically?   I realize that hardly anyone actually uses electronic submittal, but I was wondering if it's even possible to do so without using Word.

I know of one practitioner that was used to use a free Autocad clone to do his drawings, but I believe that practitioner is working at a firm now.

Logged
Isaac

JimIvey

  • Forum Moderator
  • Lead Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 7100
    • View Profile
    • IveyLaw -- Turning Caffeine into Patents(sm)
Re: Patent Drawings
« Reply #25 on: 10-10-05 at 12:16 pm »

Hi Isaac,

I've never been able to successfully complete an electronic filing of a patent application.  Back when it first came out, I was using WordPerfect -- yes, I'm a rebel at heart!  ;-)

The implementation for WordPerfect was not that great.  I was never able to author a document without XML errors.  Every attempt ended up in a frantic conversion to paper filing.  Luckily, I'm on the West Coast and my deadline is 3 hours later if I file paper.

The Figures were required to be in TIFF format.  That's easy with OpenOffice.org.  I recently looked into electronic filing again.  WordPerfect is no longer supported.  Only Word.  And, only in XP (maybe 2k).  That means about $500 or so to get one machine capable of filing electronically (I have no XP systems -- only up to 2k).  

If I can get someone in the USPTO to share their XML schema with me, I can use any of a number of open source XML editors to author applications.  I've thought about getting MS Office in XP running here (may be time to upgrade my laptop anyway and they all seem to come with XP) and seeing if I can't extract the XML schema from there.  Of course, if it ever changes, I'm pretty much screwed.

Of course, private PAIR requires Windows.  My laptop has a Windows 2K partition and that's were I do my private PAIR stuff.  It's still not practical to shun Windows altogether.

For what it's worth, OpenOffice.org is available for Windows and is a great alternative for drawings.  It also reads and writes Office formats (but not Visio -- nothing reads Visio except Visio).

I'd be happy to share more of my office set up if anyone cares.

Regards.
Logged
--
James D. Ivey
Law Offices of James D. Ivey
http://www.iveylaw.com
Friends don't let friends file provisional patent applications.

Jonathan

  • Lead Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 1179
    • View Profile
    • Email
Re: Patent Drawings
« Reply #26 on: 10-10-05 at 12:51 pm »

For what its worth, patent attorney Raymond Roberts of Intellectual Property Law Offices (iplo.com) occasionally offers e-filing classes thru the Sunnyvale Center for I, I and I (Sci-cubed, can't recall all the I's offhand). I attended one a few years back and he is pretty knowledgable on this topic.

Looks like a new .pdf-based version of e-filing will be coming out soon, however, and will hopefully be easier to use.
Logged

JimIvey

  • Forum Moderator
  • Lead Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 7100
    • View Profile
    • IveyLaw -- Turning Caffeine into Patents(sm)
Re: Patent Drawings
« Reply #27 on: 10-11-05 at 09:10 am »

Wow!  PDF would be great!  It's certainly no more work than receiving paper, but probably more work than receiving XML.

For what it's worth, this is closer to what I do with photos/screenshots in the figures:
http://www.gimp.org/tutorials/Sketch_Effect/

I do the final tweaking in the "levels" tool a little differently to get the lines bolder, but you get the idea.

That should photocopy/scan/fax well (and my drawings do -- I've done some tests).

Regards.
Logged
--
James D. Ivey
Law Offices of James D. Ivey
http://www.iveylaw.com
Friends don't let friends file provisional patent applications.

Peach

  • Guest
Re: Patent Drawings
« Reply #28 on: 10-18-05 at 07:49 pm »

As a newbie to the forum, I have question. I want to register a Patent. I know exactly how to present it, but I need drawings and instructions, and I need to know what to do next as far as registering it. I do not want to spend money on attorneys unless I have to. Any help gratefully received.

peachey@totallyflorida.com
Logged

Wiscagent

  • Lead Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 1405
    • View Profile
Re: Patent Drawings
« Reply #29 on: 10-18-05 at 08:16 pm »

The United States Patent and Trademark (USPTO) web site is a good place to get started learning about patents.

Note that in the United States patents are not "registered".  An individual must apply for the patent and the USPTO examines the application.  If the application meets the legal requirements and the invention is novel and not obvious, then the USPTO grants a patent.
Logged
Richard Tanzer
Patent Agent
Pages: 1 [2] 3
 



Footer

www.intelproplaw.com

Terms of Use
Feel free to contact us:
Sorry, spam is killing us.

iKnight Technologies Inc.

www.intelproplaw.com

Page created in 0.2 seconds with 21 queries.