Alice Series: Part 3. Now that it’s clear what ‘abstract concept’ is and how it applies to an ineligible patent, let’s discuss how to transform this lacking concept to patentable matter.
Obviously, adding a generic computer to carry out the steps of the abstract idea does not make it patent-eligible. Similarly, stating the abstract idea while adding the words “apply it with a computer” won’t fly. “Significantly more” is required to enable the addition of a computer to transform the claimed subject matter into patent eligible.
Examples that may lead patent-ineligible subject matter to patentability are improving the function of the computer itself, or effecting an improvement in any other technology or technical field. In a nutshell, the use of the computer must amount to “significantly more” to bring patent eligibility. Also, computer and electronics systems that move away from the norm of computers, servers and smartphones may exhibit “significantly more”.
Even if peripheral to the core of the invention, unique features including detail of algorithms used and atypical or unique hardware may prove beneficial in overcoming the 101 objections of Examiners.
Part 4. of the Alice Series will provide simple tips to draft patent applications specifically to overcome Alice objections.