EPO Official Aggressively Promotes Software Patents At CEBIT Fair 22/03/2017 by Intellectual Property Watch 1 Comment Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to email this to a friend (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)At the world‘s biggest computer fair, the CEBIT in Hannover, Germany today, an official of the European Patent Office promoted patents for computer-implemented inventions (CII), also called software patents by critics. CII continues to grow considerably, according to EPO. While mathematical methods, programs for computers, and presentations of information are excluded by the Europe Patent Convention, that in no way stops CII, said EPO’s Georg Weber. There is a fix in the European Patent Convention which allows the software patenting nevertheless, he said. Article 52.3 states that patentability for computer programs (and some other subjects) are excluded “only to the extent to which a European patent application or European patent relates to such subject matter or activities as such,” Weber said. The EPO therefore would grant CII patents after a two-hurdle test. To pass hurdle one, an application just has to have a “technical character.” When someone has an algorithm, but no one knows what the algorithm is doing, it cannot be patented, Weber explained to the CEBIT audience. “If it is used for encryption, though, it is already technical and the first hurdle is passed,” he said. The second hurdle is related to the inventive step. With convergence of technologies and everything being digitalised in Industry 4.0 (fully digitised, sensorised, artificial intelligence-using traditional industry) patentability of CII is a central focus for the patent office. The EPO sees CII as an opportunity to “re-industrialise Europe,” he said, “to stem the tide of de-localisation” and to “support enforcement of inventors’ rights via IP.” The EPO, which has become the topic of many reports over fights between its boss and the employees, is well-prepared to handle computer implemented inventions, Weber said, through interdisciplinary patent examiner panels and updated guidelines for the CII and Industry 4.0 applicants. EPO Guidelines for CII applications are here. The full CEBIT talk is here. Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to email this to a friend (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Related "EPO Official Aggressively Promotes Software Patents At CEBIT Fair" by Intellectual Property Watch is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.