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By J.D. Houvener
Patent Attorney and Founder

Hi everyone, I’m J.D. Houvener, the host of the Bold Today Show, where we review the inventor, business owner, entrepreneur, and get your daily dose of inspiration to make the world a better place. Today marks day three of our five-part series about software and how software patents have become quite the news story lately. This year has seen several decisions by the Federal Circuit and we’re anticipating more from the Supreme Court regarding the eligibility of software patents.

In the past two days, we opened up the discussion on what subject matter eligibility is all about and how software fits into the categories of machines or processes. We delved into the foundational framework and basis of decisions, particularly those in 2012 and 2014 with Mayo and Alice. These cases set the tone that computer implementations of abstract ideas without functional utility are ineligible.

However, recent Federal Circuit decisions have altered this landscape. Today, I’ll discuss one such case involving software virus scanning – the Finjan versus Blue Coat case. Finjan successfully argued before the Federal Circuit that their claims go beyond traditional virus scanning. Their patented system not only scans but also identifies malware or threatening code. It categorizes and dispatches this code, providing a proactive report on bad code. The Federal Circuit accepted this argument, emphasizing that Finjan’s improvement in computer technology made it eligible for a patent.

The key phrase in the decision is that by making an improvement in computer technology, it was sufficient to warrant an eligible patent. This decision opens up opportunities for many inventors in various fields, such as SAS systems, financial transactions, and business methods, as long as they can demonstrate an improvement in computer technology through their invention.

This decision serves as significant support for current inventors in the space. If you’ve learned something today or want to share this information, feel free to do so. Also, drop a comment below if you have questions or thoughts about what we discussed today. I’m your host, J.D. Houvener, on the Bold Today Show. Go big, go bold!

About the Author
J.D. Houvener is a Registered USPTO Patent Attorney who has a strong interest in helping entrepreneurs and businesses thrive. J.D. leverages his technical background in engineering and experience in the aerospace industry to provide businesses with a unique perspective on their patent needs. He works with clients who are serious about investing in their intellectual assets and provides counsel on how to capitalize their patents in the market. If you have any questions regarding this article or patents in general, consider contacting J.D. at