No one would deny that patenting your new technology is an essential, if costly process, providing as it does a twenty year monopoly on a product. Without it, your brilliant idea would be replicated the world over with no financial or intellectual thank you from other companies benefitting from a royalty free use of your ideas! Whilst patents are very relevant in medical, mechanical and generally most technical fields, the patenting of almost any invention in a huge variety of settings protects individuals and companies from financial loss. Translating those patents into target languages is a necessity, and need not be time consuming or financially intimidating.
It is quite useful to look at patents for products and technology that we now take for granted, to get an idea of the scale of the process. For example, the brassiere was patented by Mary P Jacob in 1914, (Patent No. 1.115.674.) , the electric lamp, by T.A. Edison in 1880 (Patent No. 223,898) and the microwave, by Percy Spencer in 1950 (Patent No. 2,495,429.) The toaster was patented in 1921 and the hairdryer in 1931. More recent additions to the patenting list illustrate the technological advances in our society, and the move towards recreational technology. The kindle (Patent No. D591,741 S) by Amazon, 2009 and the Game Boy, or ‘ Compact Hand-Held Video Game System’, (Patent no. 5,184,830), by Nintendo, 1993.
Patenting goes from the sublime to the ridiculous with devices for removing nasal mucus, to spinning tables to help the birthing process. The famous are not immune from the patenting process, with Michael Jackson’s patenting of the shoe to help him perform his famous ‘lean’ on stage, and Jamie Lee Curtis patenting a disposable nappy designed to hold [...]