Holiday Gifts for IP Attorneys in 2022: Inventive Tools by Patent Advocates, Practical Office Gifts and One Mesmerizing Rolling Ball Clock

From an audio book by a famed hostage negotiator to improve your examiner interviews, to a JumpNrope to support an independent inventor who is appealing her PTAB rejection to the Supreme Court, here are our 2022 gift suggestions for the IP attorney in your life.

Holiday giftsAs we tick down the days until the holidays, there’s still time to make sure that you grab a meaningful present or two for the patent attorney in your life. A few of this year’s options feature authentic products from inventors who have faced uphill battles against well-resourced infringers. Other options on this list are very practical gifts that can help organize electronic accessories or ensure that an attorney’s handwritten notes during invention disclosures are quickly digitized. Finally, there are a couple of gift ideas below that provide a great deal of entertainment value, including one expensive conversation starter incorporating a unique clock technology into an impressively artistic metallic form.

Beblau Shift Adhesive Accessories Organizer

The laptop is a treasured work companion for intellectual property professionals of all kinds, not just attorneys. The Beblau Shift adhesive organizer is a tool that can help IP professionals keep their electronic accessories and power cables quite literally under wraps. The organizer features polyurethane material resistant to stains, useful in the event of any coffee mishaps, and the organizer unit fits onto the back of any 12-inch laptop. The backing of the organizer is covered with a technical adhesive that can be removed without leaving any residue on the laptop, and the unit can also be mounted on most wall surfaces for a handy home office organizer. Beblau Shift sells a Pro version of its adhesive organizer that offers a wider surface area for storing accessories, as well as a sleeker model that provides a slimmer design with one narrow strip of elastic bands. Beblau’s website sells the Shift Pro for €34,90 and the slimmer Shift for €24,90 while Amazon lists either model for $49.99 and $39.99, respectively.

LoggerHead Tools Bionic Wrench

One very practical gift that comes with an interesting patent story is the Bionic Wrench from LoggerHead Tools. The Bionic Wrench was invented by father-and-son team Dan Brown and Dan Brown, Jr., and their company waged an effective patent enforcement campaign against cheap infringing products sold by Sears leading to a June 2017 infringement ruling in LoggerHead’s favor in U.S. district court. This suggestion comes from Eli Mazour, who hosted both Browns on a February 2022 episode of his Clause 8 podcast where they discussed their invention story and described their litigation against Sears and Apex Tools.

The Bionic Wrench can be adjusted across a range of sizes in metric and SAE. The 6-inch model, which sells on LoggerHead’s website for $32.99, can be adjusted from 1/4-inch to 9/16-inch and 7 millimeters (mm) to 14 mm, while the 8-inch model, which sells for $34.99, ranges from 1/2-inch to 3/4-inch and from 13 mm to 20 mm. The closed design of the Bionic Wrench allows it to evenly grip nuts and bolts, providing a contact area about 10 to 30 percent greater than most other wrenches and reducing the risk of slipping that causes wrenches to strip nuts and bolts. LoggerHead also sells an open-ended Bionic Grip wrench, which helps users to work on difficult-to-reach fasteners, at the same sizes and prices as the Bionic Wrench.

JumpNrope 1-, 2- and 3-Series Jump Ropes

Patent attorneys looking to add any cardio to their fitness routine can do so while supporting a burgeoning advocate for inventors and patent rights by purchasing a set of jump ropes from JumpNrope, a company started by five-time world jump rope champion Molly Metz. Another suggestion from Eli Mazour, who will be hosting Metz on an upcoming episode of Clause 8, these are the original fitness products featuring the Revolution handle technology developed by Metz in response to changes in her rope jumping form following a car accident. Metz shared her story this summer regarding the Patent Trial and Appeal Board’s (PTAB) role in making it impossible for Metz to protect her invention against corporate infringers. Metz’s case is currently before the U.S. Supreme Court and several amicus filings in October urged the court to take up Jump Rope Systems’ appeal of the Federal Circuit’s Rule 36 summary affirmance of the PTAB’s invalidation of her patent rights.

Each of the jump rope models marketed by JumpNrope features the handle technology developed by Metz, are adjustable to a jumper’s form and currently sell for $34.95 on JumpNrope’s website. The 1-Series rope is a basic model useful for jumpers of all skill levels whereas the 2-Series is a higher performance model that Metz used herself to perform 10 straight minutes of unbroken double unders. The 3-Series rope is a training model with bead segments that help jumpers in training gain a better feel for the rhythm of the jump rope hitting the floor. Each model of jump rope uses nylon-coated stainless steel materials for high performance and shatterproof durability.

Chronomeans Rolling Ball Clock

Many patent attorneys and IP professionals can remember moments of wonder from their youth where some technological marvel set their imagination ablaze and even inspired a future career in the world of invention. Curt Dodd, Chief Licensing Officer and Chief IP Officer for Harfang IP, offered his own memories of the vintage Snap-Fit Assembly Electric Ball Clock sold by Arrow in the late 1970s. While new units are no longer manufactured, vintage sets pop up on auction websites like eBay from time to time and typically sell for between $100 and $200. Dodd also tracked down the original patent covering the rolling ball clock apparatus, U.S. Patent No. 4077198 which was issued to inventor Harley Mayenschein in March 1978 and contains diagrams showing the three-tiered clock assembly.

Of course, the high stakes game of patent litigation gives many attorneys the ability to pursue at least some luxury purchases, and the Chronomeans rolling ball clock transforms the 1970s version of this child’s toy into an intricate metallic work of art. Retailing at $12,000 on Chronomean’s website, this clock assembly operates with a mesmerizing wheel mechanism that lifts stainless steel bearings to the top track, from which those bearings roll down and either come to rest or trigger the clearing of an entire row of marbles every ten minutes. Though it has some diminished value as a clock as it is devoid of any time markings, the Chronomeans rolling ball clock will dazzle guests and serve as an incredible conversation piece for those who regularly entertain others at their house.

Audio Books for More Effective Patent Examiner Interviews

Patent attorneys already have to read a great deal of technically dense material during the course of their daily work, so listening to audio books is a great way to give your eyes a rest while enjoying fiction or nonfiction content. This suggestion comes from Clint Mehall, Partner at Davidson, Davidson & Kappel, LLC, who also recommends a pair of classic bestsellers that can help patent attorneys sharpen their abilities to successfully navigate patent prosecution: How to Win Friends & Influence People by American self-improvement writer Dale Carnegie; and Never Split the Difference by FBI hostage negotiator Chris Voss. Mehall said that the skills taught by these books are especially helpful for patent examiner interviews.

“They are often the best opportunity to advocate for your clients, and both books provide useful insights in how to most effectively sway other people into agreeing with your position. Examiner interviews are negotiations, and every little insight helps, whether you are dealing with an examiner who needs a friendly influence (Carnegie) or one who is holding your Notice of Allowance prisoner (Voss).”

Both Carnegie’s and Voss’ classic books are available on audio through Audible. Subscriptions to Audible’s audio book library cost $14.95 per month.

Moleskine Smart Writing Set

Patent attorneys often find themselves needing to draw diagrams or flowcharts and it is often easier to jot those down quickly onto paper rather than open an image editor on a computer. The Moleskine Smart Writing Set, retailing online for $279, can help bridge the divide between a professional’s handwritten notes and digital files that can be easily shared with important team members. The writing set includes a large notebook that has specialized paper designed for the set’s smart pen, which transmits a user’s writing to a connected Moleskine Notes app to create a digital representation of the handwritten drawing or notes. The notebook comes with an elastic closure, ribbon bookmark and an expandable inner back pocket. The set comes with a magnetic charger for the smart pen and a single pen tip ink refill.

Vinglacé Champagne Gift Set

Although he doesn’t have a Clause 8 podcast interview with the inventor planned (yet), Eli Mazour offered one final suggestion that could serve as a great addition to a patent attorney’s liquor cabinet. Beverage tech developer Vinglacé sells champagne gift sets retailing for $129.95 and including a pair of champagne flutes and a wine chiller, each incorporating Vinglacé’s patented technology for vacuum-insulated vessels. The stainless steel wine chiller has an adjustable top to hold bottles of different sizes and the unit keeps wine cool without needing to be refrigerated itself. Vinglacé’s champagne flutes have glass interiors and come with slide close lids to keep a drink cold without ice for a longer amount of time. The champagne gift sets are available in white, rose gold and copper, and gift sets can be personalized with laser-engraved lettering or logos.

Tidbyt Programmable Retro Light Display

One fun office idea for patent attorneys who have a side interest in computer programming is the Tidbyt programmable retro light display, which currently sells online for $179. The Tidbyt currently offers access to a suite of 150 apps for displaying a variety of information including local weather, sports scores, to-do lists, stock tickers, calendar events, public transit schedules and several clock formats. Users with some coding experience can also write their own apps that they can flash to the Tidbyt’s firmware to put their own personal spin on the office display unit. The Tidbyt has a wooden enclosure composed of walnut and users can schedule power and brightness settings for the display through a connected app.

Image Source: Deposit Photos
Image ID: 13872914
Author: Melpomene

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