Chrimar Systems (also known as CMS Technologies) is a non-practicing entity that owns patents that it claims are essential to IEEE Power-over-Ethernet technology — amendments 802.3af and 802.3at to the IEEE 802.3 Ethernet standard.  Chrimar has litigated several cases throughout the years based on these patents, including a (now-terminated) ITC case (Inv. No. 337-TA-817).  Chrimar’s website lists several licensees for its Power-over-Ethernet patents, as well.

But now it looks like Chrimar’s standard-essential portfolio just got a little bit smaller.  Yesterday, in Chrimar Systems v. Foundry Networks (now Brocade Communications Systems), the Federal Circuit affirmed a lower court ruling that had invalidated claims 14 and 17 of U.S. Patent No. 5,406,260.  
Continue Reading Chrimar Systems’ Power-over-Ethernet claims found invalid on appeal

On January 22, 2013, in Soverain Software LLC v. Newegg Inc., No. 2011-1009, the Federal Circuit (Newman, Prost, and Reyna) reversed a decision by the Eastern District of Texas that had upheld the validity of a computer-implemented invention over an obviousness challenge.  This case suggests that computer-implemented patents may face increased scrutiny

Today, Wed., May 30, 2012, in Mintz v. Dietz & Watson, No. 2010-1341, the Federal Circuit (Rader, Newman, and Dyk) vacated a summary judgment of invalidity because the district court improperly applied many of the Graham obviousness factors.
Continue Reading Patent Alert: Federal Circuit clarifies obviousness standard for predictable arts (Mintz v. Dietz)

Today, Mon., Apr. 16, 2012, in Eurand v. Mylan, No. 2011-1399, the Federal Circuit (Newman, O’Malley and Reyna) reversed a bench trial judgment that pharmaceutical patents would have been obvious because the district court improperly first found obviousness and then looked to secondary indicia to rebut that finding, which led to hindsight selection of secondary indicia to support the district court’s obviousness “hunch.”   The Court ruled that there is no burden-shifting when litigating obviousness – all evidence must be considered before assessing whether the patent challenger met its burden to prove obviousness by clear and convincing evidence.
Continue Reading Patent Alert: Federal Circuit rules no burden-shifting in obviousness determination (Eurand v. Mylan)

Today, Fri., Mar. 2, 2012, in MySpace v. Graphon, No. 2011-1149, the Federal Circuit (Newman, Mayer (dissenting) and Plager) affirmed summary judgment that patent claims directed to accessing a database over a network were invalid as anticipated or obvious over the prior art.
Continue Reading Patent Alert: Federal Circuit decides classic invalidity defenses to avoid abstract patentable subject matter defense (MySpace v. Graphon)