CIPA’s Computer Technology Committee provided an excellent update on ‘Computers and IP’ on 22 November in London, including contributions from AA Thornton partner Mike Jennings who chaired a panel discussing patentability of artificial intelligence.
The panel focussed on the many technical applications of machine learning and other computer-implemented mathematical methods, and discussed how AI technologies are augmenting human intelligence to drive innovation across all industries. Mike explained the two ways in which mathematical methods can satisfy the European Patent Office requirement for “technical character”: either via claims that are functionally limited to a technical purpose in a specific technical application; or by adaptation to a specific technical implementation (e.g. an implementation design motivated by technical considerations of the internal functioning of a computer or network on which the method runs).
IBM attorney Anita Shaw summarized IBM’s work in collaboration with many companies and research centres using the IBM Watson cognitive computing platform, including solving challenging problems in healthcare, and provided an update on current AI-related patent practice around the world. Ben Hoyle (Hoyle IP Services) identified recent AI developments, and gave positive and negative examples to help the audience assess patentability. A scrollable copy of Anita, Ben and Mike’s presentation is shown below.
The event also included excellent contributions from CIPA Computer Technology Committee chair Dr Simon Davies, Dr Coreena Brinck from CMS, UKIPO Deputy Director Ben Micklewright, EPO examiner Thomas Pfaffelhuber, Andrew Alton from UDL and ex-Qualcomm consultant George Whitten.
Should you wish to discuss this topic, please contact Mike Jennings, or your usual AA Thornton contact.