Uncertainty For Computer-Based Means-Plus-Function Claims

Law360, New York (September 24, 2012, 1:05 PM EDT) -- Businesses are increasingly reliant on computers for day-to-day affairs. Not surprisingly, as businesses have grown into the Internet era, so has the pursuit of patents covering “computer” or “processor” implemented systems. This trend has resulted in significant challenges for claim drafters and litigants alike and given rise to an uneven evolution of the governing case law.

One particular challenge relates to the disclosure requirements associated with drafting in so-called “means-plus-function” form, pursuant to 35 U.S.C. § 112 ¶ 6. By statute, the specification must include “structure”...
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