The 2015 Innovation Festival will be held on September 26th & 27th and will explore how today’s inventors are creating the world of our future. In preparation for the event, the USPTO and the Smithsonian are now accepting applications of inventors interested in exhibiting their inventions at this year’s event.
Merry Lynn Morris, a faculty member USF, affected by a tragedy that left her father wheel chair bound for 21 years, created an Omni-Directional, Hands-Free Rolling Dance Chair to give those in wheel chairs new freedom and independence that most wheel chairs do not allow.
The concept of her invention has basically stayed the same over the years. She has just added additional colors and sizes and has changed some of the materials they use. I asked her about her journey in taking her invention from prototype to market. She called it a long, incredible journey that has resulted in her Vetspakz currently being sold exclusively online at Eastsport.com.
Avid skateboarder Alexei Novitzky was at the festival to display his unique invention. As a graduate student in the Mechanical Engineering program at USF, Alexei wanted to solve his problem of needing to carry around a backpack in addition to his skateboard. For many students bicycles or scooters are an effective and efficient way to travel from class to class, especially when one is short on time or running late. But Alexei, like many others, chose to ride a skateboard. He didn’t like the idea of having to wear a backpack or having to carry items in his pockets, so he decided to combine the two items he needed, a skate board and backpack, into one item and his invention, the Skatecase, was born.
IPWatchdog attends the USPTO Innovation Festival at the Smithsonian Nation Air and Space Museum.
There are ways that inventors can file for patent protection on their inventions with a limited budget, but even then you have to be realistic in the costs of this undertaking. It is critical to remember though that this is a process, and in order to do it right there are several steps that need to take place and each of these steps will take time and money. You cannot simply write down on a piece of paper what your invention is, and get a patent. If you follow these necessary steps of the process, and use the resources available to you, you can file a respectable patent application at a somewhat reasonable cost. But keep in mind that even if you are relatively Internet savvy and an educated individual, without the assistance of a Licensed Patent Attorney, the chances of things being missed or written incorrectly, increase exponentially.
At precisely 10:00 pm on Tuesday, July 30, 2013, Renee’s father and my father-in-law, Richard Compasso passed. I write this article to honor Pop, as I took to calling him in recent years. I would like everyone to know about the good many that I knew and how he will be missed.
In December of 2012 Article one Partners (AOP) announced that they would be launching a new program geared towards military veterans. As someone from a family of many military veterans, I hold the utmost respect for anyone who has served in the United States Armed forces. We have been following the program and were thrilled to learn that the program was a success when they announced that Iraq war veteran Jason Maples of Mountain View CA, was the overall Winner of the Article One Partner’s Veteran Program. Renee interviewed AOP CEO Cheryl Milone about her views on the success of the program.
On May 16th, AOP announced that Iraqi war veteran, Jason Maples was the winner of its first ever AOP Vets Program. Jason was one of more than 20 other Veterans who participated in the six week program consisting of intensive education and training in patent research, web-based career learning sessions and competitive research projects. Not only did he win a $2,500 cash reward for his success in the study he partook in but also was awarded $5,000 for his overall performance. I had the pleasure of sitting down to talk with Jason recently and following is our exchange:
On May 9, 2013, IPWatchdog’s very own Gene Quinn will be attending and presenting at the Business Development Institute’s Social Media Marketing Summit for Law Firms in NY. The summit was put together as a result of increased awareness of social media by law firms and how these platforms can be used to attract new clients and to expand business with existing clients. According to the Summit’s Event Summary, “Most lawyers use social media networking tools such as LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter and most firms have at least one blog. Many firms now recognize that blogging and social networking have helped produce new client leads.”
On March 19, 2013, the Unites States Patent and Trademark Office issued U.S. Patent No. 8,401,009 to Twitter. The Twitter patent is titled: Device Independent Message Distribution Platform. It seems to me that the other social media platforms are utilizing similar functionality as well. I suppose that is a very good thing for Twitter! Depending on how strong this patent ultimately is and what Twitter wants to do with it, social media at its core may have been patented by Twitter.
In December of 2012 Article One Partners announced that they would be launching an educational contest series geared towards military veterans with an interest in research, science and technology. The program, known as the Article One Partners Veterans Program or AOP-Vets for short will consist of three main pillars; an educational curriculum on patent research, a series of career guidance sessions from intellectual property executives, and an “exciting Grand Challenge” with the opportunity to win rewards for success on the research platform. In fact, at the end of the program, which is set to begin on April 8, 2013 and will run through May 17, of 2013, the best-performing participant of the program will receive a $5,000 reward.
Recently Inc.com published an article titled The Art and Science of Corporate Icons, which discusses Skeeter the squirrel, who is apparently the only squirrel in the world allergic to nuts. Skeeter is also the cartoon mascot for Skeeter Snacks, a line of nut-free cookies created by Dave Leyrer and Pete Najarian, whose target audience is parents with children who have allergies to nuts. The Inc.com article, discussed the creation of Skeeter from the drawing board to the finished product, including what aspects of this critter they wanted to depict their brand. They wanted the product to not only be affordable and appealing to kids but also to show that they were “…more playful than other allergen-free brands.”
Although we have not been officially notified by the ABA, the vote totals are now viewable on the ABA Journal Blawg 100 page and it seems that we have been voted the top IP law blog for 2012! We have now been honored as one of the top 100 legal blogs by the American Bar Association for four years in a row, and the top IP law blog in 2010 and again in 2012. In terms of website traffic, during 2012 we had our best year ever. For 2012 we averaged 82,632 unique visitors per month (compared with an average of about 71,000 for 2011). We also finished 2012 with our top three monthly totals for unique visitors, with 90,656 in October 2012, 89,541 in November 2012 and 87,583 in December 2012.
No matter where we go these days, social media surrounds us. It seems everyone is saying, “Follow us on Twitter.” “Like us on Facebook.” “For More Information Scan Our QR Code.” Just this week alone I have seen at least a dozen places in my everyday life where social media has come into the real world; At church, On my way home from the airport on the backs of hotel shuttle vans; At my local coffee shop to name a few. Social media is here to stay and businesses of all sizes know it. But what many smaller businesses don’t know or care to realize is that there are several bad habits that still need to be broken in order to make the most out of their social media strategies. Following is a list of these common bad habits and what small business can do to get it break away from these same old mistakes.