Supreme Court Rules Software and Business Methods Can Still Be Patented

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On June 28, the last day of its current term, the United States Supreme Court ruled, in the much-anticipated Bilski patent case, that software and business methods may still be patented. The Court approved the use of the so-called “machine-or transformation” test, i.e., whether the claimed invention is tied to a particular machine or apparatus or whether it transforms a particular article into a different state or thing, in evaluating the viability of software and business method patent applications, but refused to recognize that test as the sole one for patentability.

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