Friday, February 19, 2010

Claims Containing "Control Means" Element were Indefinite for Failing to Disclose "Steps of an Algorithm Executed by the Microprocessor"

Defendants' motion for partial summary judgment of invalidity for indefiniteness was granted in part as to claims containing the term "control means." "[I]f the specification merely states a computer or microprocessor performs the claimed function, the specification does not disclose adequate structure and the claim is indefinite. Similarly, the specification does not disclose sufficient structure if it simply describes the outcome of the claimed function and does not disclose a computer programmed to execute a particular algorithm. . . . [Plaintiff's] two steps accurately follow the written description as to the generalized way the control means operates, but those steps are not the steps of an algorithm executed by the microprocessor. Any algorithm would necessarily take the form of a sequence of steps where the existence of a varying voltage drop across resistors . . . would be determined or inferred."

Network-1 Security Solutions, Inc. v. Cisco Systems, Inc. et al., 6-08-cv-00030 (TXED February 16, 2010, Memorandum Opinion & Order) (Davis, J.)

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