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Statement on Software Patents - - - Photo of a gear assembly off of an old barn - - - Original photo copyright Barbara Henry - - - Licensed through iStockphoto.com

Intel Statement on Software Patents

Transcript of proceedings from public hearings by the Patent and Trademark Office, Department of Commerce, Docket #931222-3322: Use of the Patent System to Protect Software Related Inventions, January 26-27, 1994 at the San Jose Convention Center and February 10-11, 1994, at the Crystal Forum in Arlington, Virginia.

Carl Silverman,
Chief Intellectual Property Counsel, Intel

Mr. Silverman: I thank you. Good afternoon. My name is Carl Silverman, Chief Counsel, Intellectual Property for Intel Corporation. We understand that the Patent and Trademark Office is interested in obtaining public input on issues associated with the patenting of software-related inventions, and we're pleased that the Patent and Trademark Office invited us here today to briefly testify.

Software technology has become an integral part of virtually all of U.S. industry, as innovators strive to develop new and improved products in today's competitive, worldwide marketplace. Now, this technology includes pure software, and software which is combined with hardware, so for example, Intel Corporation, like other successful high-technology companies, invests the efforts of its engineers and large sums of money, the shareholders' money, to develop software-related technology. In 1993 alone, Intel Corporation invested nearly one billion dollars in research and development, including a substantial amount in software-related technology. We also, we, Intel Corporation, also invested nearly two billion dollars in capital to build factories so that we can build these advanced products.

These advanced products include products such as our Pentium processor. This is a microprocessor with more than three million transistors on a single chip. This microprocessor product includes software technology in the form of microcode and other computer programs.

Now, to protect and encourage this kind of vast U.S. investment, and I'm referring to both the technical as well as the financial aspects, and, to promote the development of new and improved products, we at Intel believe that software-related technology should continue to be afforded the opportunity to obtain patent protection.

The patent system has consistently provided an incentive to expend the kind of technical and financial efforts previously testified to to develop new technology, including software-related technology. In the United States the Patent and Trademark Office carefully examines every patent application against prior art to insure that only the novel and nonobvious inventions obtain patent protection. Software-related technology is no different.

We support the current statutory law concerning patents as well as its interpretation by the courts as relating to software-related inventions. We are currently aware of no alternative to the patenting of software-related inventions that will better-serve our industry than the current patent laws.

Further, we believe it would be a mistake to treat the patenting of software-related inventions differently than the patenting of other utility inventions. In this regard, Patent and Trademark Office and the courts should be left free to develop the extent of patent protection for software-related inventions and its enforceability on a case-by-case basis until such time as it is apparent that the courts are not up to the task. This time is not at hand, rather, the courts for the most part are both interested and concerned about protecting innovative technologies such as software-related inventions.

Now, this is not to say that the current system for patenting software-related inventions is not without opportunity for improvement. For example: We understand that the Patent and Trademark Office is working to improve its library of software prior art so as to improve its ability to examine patent applications in this area. We support this effort. We urge the Patent and Trademark Office to increase its capability to examine software-related patent applications by taking whatever steps necessary to establish the best prior art software library and to increase and-or redeploy the number of patent examiners who are knowledgeable in this crucial area.

On behalf of Intel Corporation we thank you for providing us with the opportunity to present our views on this subject, and we are delighted that the Patent and Trademark Office has encouraged this free flow of ideas so that we as a country can do the right thing here.

Thank you.

 

I obtained this transcript from the internet. In an email on Friday, 28.Jan.2000, I wrote to obtain more info (is it accurate, is it still policy, etc.) I have not yet received a response to this email.


Statements and Policies on Software Patents

Adobe Systems Statement On Software PatentsAdobe Systems Statement On Software Patents: Opposition to software patents in a statement at a Public Hearing on Use of the Patent System to Protect Software Related Inventions, Wednesday, January 26, 1994 at the San Jose Convention Center.  (software_patent_adobe)

Autodesk Statement On Software PatentsAutodesk Statement On Software Patents: Opposition to software patents in a statement at a Public Hearing on Use of the Patent System to Protect Software Related Inventions, Wednesday, January 26, 1994 at the San Jose Convention Center.  (software_patent_autodesk)

Borland International Statement On Software PatentsBorland International Statement On Software Patents: Opposition to software patents in a statement at a Public Hearing on Use of the Patent System to Protect Software Related Inventions, Wednesday, January 26, 1994 at the San Jose Convention Center.  (software_patent_borland)

IBM Statement On Software PatentsIBM Statement On Software Patents: Support for the system in a statement at a Public Hearing on Use of the Patent System to Protect Software Related Inventions, Wednesday, January 26, 1994 at the San Jose Convention Center.  (software_patent_ibm)

Intel Statement On Software PatentsIntel Statement On Software Patents: Support for the system in a statement at a Public Hearing on Use of the Patent System to Protect Software Related Inventions, Wednesday, January 26, 1994 at the San Jose Convention Center.  (software_patent_intel)

Microsoft Statement On Software PatentsMicrosoft Statement On Software Patents: Support for the system in a statement at a Public Hearing on Use of the Patent System to Protect Software Related Inventions, Wednesday, January 26, 1994 at the San Jose Convention Center.  (software_patent_microsoft)

Mitch Kapor's Congressional Testimony On Software PatentsMitch Kapor's Congressional Testimony On Software Patents: Opposition to software patents in congressional testimony by Mitch Kapor, founder of Lotus.  (software_patent_kapor)

Oracle Software Patent PolicyOracle Software Patent Policy: Well written. Reportedly "withdrawn", but worth reading.  (software_patent_oracle)

Silicon Graphics Statement On Software PatentsSilicon Graphics Statement On Software Patents: Support for the system in a statement at a Public Hearing on Use of the Patent System to Protect Software Related Inventions, Wednesday, January 26, 1994 at the San Jose Convention Center.  (software_patent_sgi)

Software Patent HearingsSoftware Patent Hearings: In January and February of 1994, the U. S. Patent Office held hearings on the use of the patent system to protect software related inventions. This is the text of the Federal Register notice.  (software_patent_hearings)

Sun Microsystems Statement On Software PatentsSun Microsystems Statement On Software Patents: Not opposition but not outright support either. Call it "concerns". A statement at a Public Hearing on Use of the Patent System to Protect Software Related Inventions, Wednesday, January 26, 1994 at the San Jose Convention Center.  (software_patent_sun)

Synopsys Statement On Software PatentsSynopsys Statement On Software Patents: Opposition to software patents in a statement at a Public Hearing on Use of the Patent System to Protect Software Related Inventions, Wednesday, January 26, 1994 at the San Jose Convention Center.  (software_patent_synopsys)

Taligent Statement On Software PatentsTaligent Statement On Software Patents: Support for the system in a statement at a Public Hearing on Use of the Patent System to Protect Software Related Inventions, Wednesday, January 26, 1994 at the San Jose Convention Center.  (software_patent_taligent)

Time Warner Cable Statement On Software PatentsTime Warner Cable Statement On Software Patents: Not opposition but not outright support either. Call it "concerns". A statement at a Public Hearing on Use of the Patent System to Protect Software Related Inventions, Wednesday, January 26, 1994 at the San Jose Convention Center.  (software_patent_timewarner)

Videodiscovery Statement On Software PatentsVideodiscovery Statement On Software Patents: expressions of the problems for a small firm. A statement at a Public Hearing on Use of the Patent System to Protect Software Related Inventions, Wednesday, January 26, 1994 at the San Jose Convention Center.  (software_patent_videodiscovery)

Wind River Systems Statement On Software PatentsWind River Systems Statement On Software Patents: Opposition to software patents in a statement at a Public Hearing on Use of the Patent System to Protect Software Related Inventions, Wednesday, January 26, 1994 at the San Jose Convention Center.  (software_patent_windriver)

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