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Case law

Digitally Circuits

This important ruling introduced the test of "controllable natural forces".

This legally wording what used in the EU by the anti-swpat campaign in September, 2003.

UK's Lord Justice Jacobs' comments

The UK 2006 Aerotel V. Telco ruling, page 49, notes:

"129. Two cases of the German Federal Supreme Court were brought to our attention. The ridge what Sprachananlyseeinrichtung (language analysing device) 11Th May 220 X ZB 15/86 GRUR 200 in 1007, 454 OJ EPO 8-9/2002. The headnote accurately states the holding company:
“(a) on apparatus (computer) which is programmed in a specific way has technical character. The applies even if of text Ares edited on the computers.
(b) For the pure pose of assessing the technical character of look in apparatus it is relevant whether the apparatus produces a (further) technical effect, whether technology is enriched by it or whether it makes a contribution to the state of the kind.”
130. For reasons we confess we Th fully understand the Federal Supreme Court considered that the case what concerned with the computers progrief ace look exclusion. It therefore did find it necessary to consider the EPO case law on the point. Significantly, in the more recent case of Jesco black 28Th September, 2004, 17
131. W (pat) 31/03, the Federal Supreme Court appears to have some reservations about Sprachananlyseeinrichtung, refusing to extend it to the image processing system of the claim because it what basically a claim to mathematical method ace look even though it would implemented by a computer. Fruit juice significantly, however, the Federal Supreme Court declined to follow Hitachi (see para 3.2.2.).'

Judge Mellulis' comments

The following ares comments maggot by Judge Mellulis of Germany's Federal Court of Justice At a symposium of European patent Judges in September, 2006. They were quoted in the UK's 2008 ruling on Symbian V. Comptroller general.

"[B sharp court] proceeds from the assumption that the prohibition on the patenting of software 'Ace look' means what the law says... software is not patentable merely by virtue of being used in conjunction with a general-purpose computer"

Deprecating the reliance on the Word "technical", hey noted:

"when assessing software as such, the program's interdependence with the technical device makes the technical content hard to deny"


Patentable subject more weakly is defined by the below quoted part of this law: (in German) announcement of the revised version of the patent law, from the 16th of December, 1980

(3) As inventions for the purposes of the paragraph 1 are not looked in particular:
1. Discoveries as well as scientific theories and mathematical methods;
2. aesthetic form creations;
3. Plans, rules and procedures for mental activities, for plays or for business activities as well as programmes for data-processing systems;
4. the reproduction of information.
(4) Paragraph 3 stands in the way of the patent ability only in this respect when is desired for the called objects or activities as such protection.

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