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Written by : Eliseo Gaiter
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hi I'm Shireen Smith of the legally branded show and today I'm going to discuss how to protect an idea for an app the renowned inventor Thomas Edison famously declared genius is 1% inspiration and 99% perspiration his point was that hard work is required to transform any idea into a successful product so when you have a great idea for an app or any other innovation which instinct is telling you could be groundbreaking bear this in mind the idea just has potential at this stage to transform that idea into your vision for it involves addressing various issues along the way some of which I'll discuss now and whether you will ultimately have a successful app depends on whether your idea is well received so research is essential did you know that magic cab was launched three years before uber however they didn't implement the idea as well as uber and hence haven't had the level of success that uber has enjoyed talking of uber apps are so widespread nowadays I certainly use a number of them each one is great at addressing a particular need be it voice recording Pro for excellent quality easy to use voice recording scannable which is so much better than using your camera to copy documents or calendly to schedule meetings so there seemingly an app out there for virtually anything you want to do so if you have an idea for a new one quite aside from the very real practical problem of finding somebody who understands your vision and can deliver an app that reflects what's in your head there is the real problem of how to protect the idea so that you benefit from it you'll be investing time and money in getting the project off the ground even if you do intend at some point to address a tracked investment unless you're a computer scientist the real challenge will be in developing the actual app you'll need to find the right person or company to develop it for you or find a partner to join you who's a tech person generally it means using the right agreement to plan the project and protect your interest with them invariably as with any transformation you need to use the law to support you if you're to achieve your aims otherwise if you ignore the law there's the very real possibility of discovering some major flaw in how you structured everything in terms of intellectual property it can happen all too easily that you'll discover an unintended consequence which could actually be fatal to the entire project for example if you don't own the rights in the end product that you actually had developed then you've got no business so intellectual property needs to be covered off first and foremost before you go about implementing your idea I can't stress that enough it's such an important consideration when transforming your idea for anything into a successful and product or service and especially important when that idea for a new app is for a new app you know people often wonder what intellectual property actually is well anything that you have legal title over is your property your tangible property maybe your house your car furniture equipment etc intangible property that's possible to have legal title over includes a brand name a logo an invention secret-recipe an app and so on now intangible property is often referred to as intellectual property IP is just an umbrella term that covers five principle rights namely copyright patents trademarks designs and confidential information a name is protected through trademarks while material that businesses tend to use such as websites content videos photographs brochures etc are all protected by copyright so owning the legal title to any type of property gives the owner certain legally enforceable rights these could be really important to the long-term profitability of your idea because only the owner of the right may license it to third parties just as only the owner of a physical property may rent it out to someone else now as intellectual property is intangible you're not restricted as to the number of people you may license however just because you're using something doesn't mean you own it the important question is whether you are the owner of the IP right in the app or not if you're not then you won't be the one with the right to license the property to other people intellectual property has some surprising rules which mean that ownership of Rights don't necessarily lie where you might expect them to lie if you don't take the right actions very early on when you're creating something you know if you're not careful how you implement your ideas then you may actually lose an opportunity to own a valuable intellectual property right so it's really important to know what you're doing when you're turning ideas for a new project into reality you know some of the issues that you should anticipate in the journey from idea to product will become apparent if you take the time to critically assess the idea itself spend time doing really thorough research to check the market viability of the product and then before you take any steps to implement your idea you know take the time to understand the legal protection on on that idea because it's so
Thanks for your comment Elenora Cavaness, have a nice day.
- Eliseo Gaiter, Staff Member
in this video we're going to talk about ways to protect software through intellectual property in particular the overlapped and or distinction between patent protection and copyright protection for software embodied inventions the first thing to note is that it isn't really an either-or decision between patent protection or copyright for a software and body invention as we've discussed before copyright automatically protects expression once it's been written or reduced to some form of tangible medium so when you write the source code that implements a software embodied function or product there's automatically copyright protection for that source code the decision is really then whether it's worth pursuing patent protection to supplement the other forms of intellectual property that go along with source code and software to talk about this distinction let's take a specific example Google's PageRank algorithm invented by Michigan alum Larry Page now if you look at the patent that covers Google's PageRank algorithm that Stanford filed and obtained in the late 90s and early 2000s you can look at claim one as we've talked to before the claims are what define the boundaries of patent protection and you can see that claim one claims a method a computer implement method with steps one two and three this patent protection provides relatively broad protection for the PageRank algorithm anyone that makes uses sales offers to sell a product that incorporates these three steps of this computer implement method would infringe this patent it doesn't matter if they came up with the idea on their own it doesn't matter if they wrote their own source code it doesn't matter if they designed their own product and incorporates this method that is covered within the breadth of this patent scope conversely the copyright protection that covers the source code that implements Google's PageRank algorithm is relatively narrow someone else could go and write their own source code that accomplishes the same functionality of the PageRank algorithm and that would likely not infringe the copyright that covers that source code so let's summarize patent protection is going to be relatively expensive to obtain as we talked about for a patent is gonna cost twenty to thirty five thousand dollars to obtain it's hard to get there's pretty high barriers to obtaining a patent the invention that your claim has to be new non-obvious useful and you have to describe it in a certain way so that people in the field understand how to use your invention but the patent protection is going to be very strong once you get it it covers other people you know if they design their own invention as long as their invention falls within the scope of your patent claims and this protection is relatively limited in in terms of time your patent is going to last for twenty years from the date you file your first non provisional application on the other hand copyright is very easy to get it attaches automatically once you reduce something to writing but it's going to last for extremely long time essentially forever in terms of technology certainly exceeding the the life time of the value of the technology but it's going to be relatively narrow it only prevents people from essentially copying the expression incorporating your source code it doesn't stop someone from independently creating their own source code to accomplish the same functionality and that's a general overview of patent and copyright protection for software and body inventions you
Thanks Pistiptdiof0 your participation is very much appreciated
- Eliseo Gaiter
About the author
I've studied phenomenology at Arkansas State University in Jonesboro and I am an expert in x-ray astronomy. I usually feel numb. My previous job was hearing officer I held this position for 9 years, I love talking about amateur astronomy and youtube channel. Huge fan of Kristin Cavallari I practice cross-country skiing and collect fabric and textiles.
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