Glossary Pilot Program
The United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO or Office) is initiating a Glossary Pilot Program to study how the inclusion of a glossary section in the specification of a patent application at the time of filing the application improves the clarity of the patent claims and facilitates examination of patent applications by the USPTO. Currently, there is no requirement that a glossary section be provided by an applicant as part of the patent application specification. In order to participate in the Glossary Pilot Program, an applicant will be required to include a glossary section in the patent application specification to define terms used in the patent application. The pilot is testing to see if definitions in the glossary section enhance patent quality and improve the clarity of patent claims, by enabling the USPTO and the public to more fully understand the meaning of the patent claims. This notice outlines conditions, eligibility requirements, and guidelines of the pilot program, which will govern acceptance of an application into, and examination under, the Glossary Pilot Program. Applications accepted into this pilot program will receive expedited processing by placing them on an examiner's special docket prior to the first Office action, and will have special status up to issuance of a first Office action.
National Medal of Technology and Innovation Nomination Evaluation Committee Charter Renewal
The Chief Financial Officer and Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Administration, with the concurrence of the General Services Administration, renewed the Charter for the National Medal of Technology and Innovation Nomination Evaluation Committee on February 28, 2014.
National Medal of Technology and Innovation Extension of Deadline for 2014 Nominations
The Department of Commerce (United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO)) is in the process of accepting nominations for the National Medal of Technology and Innovation (NMTI). Since establishment by Congress in the Stevenson-Wydler Technology Innovation Act of 1980, the President of the United States has awarded the annual National Medal of Technology and Innovation (initially known as the National Medal of Technology) to our nation's leading innovators. To ensure greater participation in the nomination process, the USPTO is extending the deadline for nominations from April 1, 2014 to June 2, 2014. If you know of a candidate who has made an outstanding contribution to the nation's economic, environmental, or social well-being through the promotion of technology, technological innovation, or the development of technological manpower, you are encouraged to submit a nomination.
Request for Comments and Notice of Roundtable Event on the Use of Crowdsourcing and Third-Party Preissuance Submissions To Identify Relevant Prior Art
The United States Patent and Trademark Office (Office) is hosting a roundtable event to solicit public opinions regarding the use of crowdsourcing and third-party preissuance submissions to identify relevant prior art and enhance the quality of examination as well as the quality of issued patents. Members of the public are invited to participate. The roundtable will provide a forum for an informal discussion of the topics identified in this notice. Written comments in response to these topics also are requested.
Substantive Submissions Made During Prosecution of the Trademark Application
The United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO), as part of its continuing effort to reduce paperwork and respondent burden, invites the general public and other Federal agencies to comment on the continuing information collection, as required by the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, Public Law 104-13 (44 U.S.C. 3506(c)(2)(A)).
Changes to Continued Prosecution Application Practice
The Leahy-Smith America Invents Act (AIA) revised and streamlined the requirements for the inventor's oath or declaration. In implementing the AIA inventor's oath or declaration provisions, the United States Patent and Trademark Office (Office) provided that an applicant may postpone the filing of the inventor's oath or declaration until allowance if the applicant provides an application data sheet indicating the name, residence, and mailing address of each inventor. The rules pertaining to continued prosecution applications (which are applicable only to design applications) require that the prior nonprovisional application of a continued prosecution application be complete, which requires that the prior nonprovisional application contain the inventor's oath or declaration. This interim rule revises the rules pertaining to continued prosecution applications to permit the filing of a continued prosecution application even if the prior nonprovisional application does not contain the inventor's oath or declaration if the continued prosecution application is filed on or after September 16, 2012, and the prior nonprovisional application contains an application data sheet indicating the name, residence, and mailing address of each inventor.
Changes to Permit Delayed Submission of Certain Requirements for Prioritized Examination
The Leahy-Smith America Invents Act includes provisions for prioritized examination of patent applications (also referred to as ``Track I''), which have been implemented by the United States Patent and Trademark Office (Office) in previous rulemakings. This interim rule simplifies the Track I prioritized examination practice to reduce the number of requests for prioritized examination that must be dismissed. In order to enable rapid processing and examination of those applications, the previous rulemakings provided that an application having a request for Track I prioritized examination requires, upon filing of the application, an inventor's oath or declaration and all required fees, and contains no more than four independent claims, thirty total claims, and no multiple dependent claims. Accordingly, any request for Track I prioritized examination not meeting all of the requirements on filing must be dismissed. The Office has found that many such dismissals are due to the application as filed not including a properly executed inventor's oath or declaration, not including the excess claims fees or application size fee due, or improperly including a multiple dependent claim or claims in excess of the permitted number. The Office has determined that the time periods for meeting those requirements when filing a request for Track I prioritized examination could be expanded while maintaining the Office's ability to timely examine the patent application.