Help Me Pick A New Clock

I need to find a new clock for my bedroom.  The current only is nice, has big red letters, but gains about 5 minutes a week.  So I have to pick out a new clock.  So which one do you think I should get?

Nearly perfect!

Probably not good for night-time use.

I’m afraid it would only last one meal, I mean night.

As I get older, it may not be a good idea to show blurry time.

YIKES! Only good for one night, but you won’t need to hit the snooze button.

Hmmmm, there seems to be something slightly odd about this one. Nothing seems that far out of the ordinary when you first look at this clock. Looking closer you may notice the numbers seem a little high. This is because one complete rotation of this clock is equal to the average human lifespan. The clock is an artwork by bertrand planes which uses an ordinary clock slowed down 61320 times to make each minute equal to a year.  One clock, one life….maybe a little too much reality for everyday use.

This clock and a roller coaster have a lot in common.

A blank white board clock.  Could be useful to teach kids about time, or at the very least get some interesting time pieces.

Now we’re talking! A little math in the morning never hurt anyone.

Ummm…maybe I spoke too soon about the math in the morning.

Uh oh…I wonder what happens if I don’t get the correct answer.  Does time unravel?

Let me know which clock you think I should get.

How I Can Help

These clocks can be good candidates for a design patent. If you, or know someone can use my help to draft and file a design patent, please contact me for a free 30 minute consultation at nvantreeck@usip.com or call TOLL FREE at 1-855-UR IDEAS (1-855-874-3327) and ask for Norman.

– Ex astris, scientia –

I am and avid amateur astronomer and intellectual property attorney.  As a former Chief Petty Officer in the U.S. Navy, I am a proud member of the Armed Service Committee of the Los Angeles County Bar Association working to aid all active duty and veterans in our communities.  Connect with me on Google +

Norman

Should I File a Design Patent?

Generally, a “design patent” protects the way an article looks, or its ornementality, as opposed to a “utility patent” that protects the way an article is used and works. In some cases, an invention possesses both functional and ornamental characteristics, and both design and utility patents may be obtained.

What Is a “Design?”

As detailed by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, a “design” is defined as the visual ornamental characteristics embodied in, or applied to, an article of manufacture. Since a design is manifested in appearance, the subject matter of a design patent application may refer to the configuration or shape of an article, to the surface ornamentation applied to an article, or to the combination of configuration and surface ornamentation.

What Can Be Patented?

As with a utility patent, a design patent must be approved by the USPTO. It is important to note that the following cannot be the subject of a design patent:

  • A design for an article of manufacture that is dictated primarily by the function of the article.
  • A design for an article of manufacture that is hidden in its end use and whose ornamental appearance is of no commercial concern prior to reaching its end use.
  • A design for an article of manufacture that is not “original.” For instance, a design that simulates a well known, or naturally occurring object or person is not original as required by the statute.
  • Subject matter that could be considered offensive to any race, religion, sex, ethnic group, or nationality is not proper subject matter for a design patent.

What Rights Does a Design Patent Afford?

A design patent has a term of 14 years from the date it is granted. Like a utility patent, it allows the owner to pursue legal action against infringers. With respect to design patents, courts will use the “ordinary observer” test. The test examines both the similarities and differences between the two products to determine if there is sufficient overall similarity that would mislead the ordinary observer into thinking they are the same product.

How I Help

If you have a design that you need help to patent, or know someone that can use my help, please contact me for a free 30 minute consultation at nvantreeck@usip.com or call TOLL FREE at 1-855-UR IDEAS (1-855-874-3327) and ask for Norman.

– Ex astris, scientia –

I am and avid amateur astronomer and intellectual property attorney.  As a former Chief Petty Officer in the U.S. Navy, I am a proud member of the Armed Service Committee of the Los Angeles County Bar Association working to aid all active duty and veterans in our communities.  Connect with me on Google +

Norman

What is a Design Patent?

In general, a “design patent” protects the way an article looks, as opposed to a “utility patent” that protects the way an article is used and works. In some cases, an invention possesses both functional and ornamental characteristics, and both design and utility patents may be obtained.

What Is a “Design?”

A “design” is defined as the visual ornamental characteristics embodied in, or applied to, an article of manufacture. Since a design is manifested in appearance, the subject matter of a design patent application may refer to the configuration or shape of an article, to the surface ornamentation applied to an article, or to the combination of configuration and surface ornamentation.

What Can Be Patented?

As with a utility patent, a design patent must be approved by the United States Patent and Trademark Office. It is important to note that the following cannot be the subject of a design patent:

  • A design for an article of manufacture that is dictated primarily by the function of the article.
  • A design for an article of manufacture that is hidden in its end use and whose ornamental appearance is of no commercial concern prior to reaching its end use.
  • A design for an article of manufacture that is not “original.” For instance, a design that simulates a well known, or naturally occurring object or person is not original as required by the statute.
  • Subject matter that could be considered offensive to any race, religion, sex, ethnic group, or nationality is not proper subject matter for a design patent.

What Rights Does a Design Patent Afford?

A design patent has a term of 14 years from the date it is granted. Like a utility patent, it allows the owner to pursue legal action against infringers. With respect to design patents, courts will use the “ordinary observer” test. The test examines both the similarities and differences between the two products to determine if there is sufficient overall similarity that would mislead the ordinary observer into thinking they are the same product.

How I Can Help

Of course, this post provides only a broad overview of design patents. Before embarking on the patent process, it is advisable to consult with an experienced patent attorney. Please contact me if you have any questions.