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The America Invents Act has given independent inventors a reason to speed up their process and get to the USPTO with an application sooner. In the same way, small business owners should know what the law has done to the patent landscape.
You've got an invention, but what an ordeal just to get it to “patent pending” status! The reality is, filing a provisional application for patent is not as confusing or as intimidating as people think—especially if you know what to expect.
Shattering what's been the status quo for more than half a century, the new America Invents Act will shift the US from a “first to invent” to a “first inventor to file” country—dramatically changing the playing field for independent inventors.
Can you imagine a world without light bulbs, zippers or—gasp!—computers? Innovation is everywhere and, in many real ways, defines modern life. It has the power to bring societies together and fuel entire economies.
While the USPTO is actively encouraging the development of “green” technology, green trademark and patent seekers should be well-informed going into the process in order to increase the probability of success—because it's not enough to just have a catchy “green” name anymore.
In the celebrity world, truth is often stranger than fiction. Imagine an invention by Kevin Costner for cleaning up the BP oil spill, or giving your child a birthday present invented by Christie Brinkley to teach little ones their ABCs. You'd be surprised at what some celebrities have invented in their spare time.
When you have a great idea that you're thinking about patenting, it's almost counter-intuitive to clam up and not share it with anyone. After all, you want whatever you've created to go viral and get as much interest as possible…right? Not necessarily. Until you've filed your application with the US Patent & Trademark Office, you want to be extra careful about who you talk to and how you share your ideas.
Did you ever find a conversation heart on your desk in elementary school and wonder where it came from? Or get a heart-shaped box of delicious chocolates from a loved one? These and other heart-warming inventions are some of the classic ways we celebrate love—and might even give you ideas of what to get your loved one this Valentine's Day.
George Washington Carver rose from slavery to become one of the greatest scientists of the 20th century. Devoting his life to understanding nature, he is credited with creating hundreds of new products from crops, and developing agricultural innovations that have become the stadards of today. Carver was not only a trailblazer for African-Americans, but a pioneer for all people. Find out more about how this early American turned what could have been a tragedy into a triumph.
As you bundle up this winter, you might wish you had a little something extra to keep you warm. Sometimes, that's all it takes to get an inventor's creative ideas flowing. From the most simple to the most silly, these five inventions take cold out of the equation by helping keep you warm from the inside–out.