A patent is an exclusive right granted for an invention, which is a product or a process that provides, in general, a new way of doing something, or offers a new technical solution to a problem. To get a patent, technical information about the invention must be disclosed to the public in a patent application.
As stated by the same source, several condition must be met to obtain one, including :
- The invention must show an element of novelty;
- The invention must involve an “inventive step” or “non-obvious”, which means that it could not be obviously deduced by a person having ordinary skill in the relevant technical field;
- The invention must be capable of industrial application, meaning that it must be capable of being used for an industrial or business purpose beyond a mere theoretical phenomenon, or be useful.
- Its subject matter must be accepted as “patentable” under law. In many countries, scientific theories, aesthetic creations, mathematical methods, plant or animal varieties, discoveries of natural substances, commercial methods, methods for medical treatment (as opposed to medical products) or computer programs are generally not patentable.
I believe the three first conditions are rather obvious, while the last seems to be much more complicated. What is the difference between something patentable and something that is not ? How difficult would it be then for a video game corporation to patent an idea, as suggested in my previous post ? I would be very interested in any information regarding this subject, as I don't really understand how this has not already became a war in the video game industry.