Image created using DALL·E 3 with this prompt: A human and an AI in a workshop together, both working on an invention together. Should evoke feelings of the 1800s. Rustic, wooden, inspiring. Aspect ratio: 16×9.
The UK Supreme Court has ruled that AI cannot be named as an inventor on patent applications. This decision emerged from a case involving Stephen Thaler and his AI system, DABUS, challenging the traditional boundaries of patent law.Thaler attempted to list DABUS as the inventor for two patents, but the UK Intellectual Property Office rejected this, citing the legal requirement for an inventor to be a human. The Supreme Court upheld this stance, reinforcing the notion that current patent laws recognize only “natural persons” as inventors. Thaler’s lawyers have criticized UK patent law for being inadequate in protecting AI-generated inventions.The decision does not explore the broader implications of AI in patentability or suggest any expansion of the term “inventor” to include AI. Clearly, legal systems will need to evolve to fully accommodate the intellectual contributions of AI technologies… or will they?There is a difference between using a patent to protect your intellectual property and keeping your invention a trade secret. When you file a patent, you have to show your idea to everyone. A trade secret is just that: secret. For example, the formula for Coca-Cola is not patented; it’s a trade secret.If AI is truly valuable in assisting with the creation of better mouse traps… why the need to share? Just reduce your invention to practice and, as the saying goes, “The world will beat a path to your door.”Whenever a startup pitches us a new idea, I ask: “If you built the Death Star, would you A) Rent it out?, or B) Use it to rule the galaxy?” AI may give every human co-inventor that choice.More By This Author:Brushing Off The Merger: Adobe And Figma Part Ways In A Not-So-Picture-Perfect SplitWill Google Really Do It This Time?Is ChatGPT Getting Lazy?