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Morning an IP loss

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KMoffett

Well-Known Member
OK, I'm just whining. How many of you have designed something that was very useful for you, and posted it on a forum to help some other participant…for their personal project. Then you later find that someone has taken your exact concept or design and gone commercial. I supposed you should feel flattered!…but you feel…robbed?

A year and half ago I posted this in a forum thread:
All About Circuits Forum - View Single Post - How to build a current detector switch circuit for home outlet

Yesterday I got a flyer from Woodcraft and found this:
**broken link removed**
Not that auto-start shop dust collector controls haven’t been around for some time, it’s my delayed–start/delayed-stop that was unique.

Three years ago I posted this:
https://www.metalworking.com/dropbox/TIG Pulser.txt
https://www.metalworking.com/dropbox/TIG_Pulser_front.jpg

I recently was informed, be someone that wanted to build mine, about this:
Miller Diversion 165 Oakden Engineering TPU 5070 Tig Pulser Unit
Look kind of familiar? OK, they switched the LEDs and Rate control positions. The two LEDs indicating high/low current and pulse rate scale that switches from Hz to Sec at 1 Sec/Hz are just too unique to be coincidence.

I have no claim except that they were made for my job and I suppose that the intellectual property does belong to my employer. But, since they're an educational institution I doubt they will want to spend scarce funds on it.

Ken
 
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3v0

Coop Build Coordinator
Forum Supporter
I understand the feeling but if you post it to the web it is no longer yours. Is it ?

If this applies or not I do not know. But a lot of things are more evolutionary then invention.

Even inventions are often created by several people who do not have any contact.

3v0
 

KMoffett

Well-Known Member
I agree that ideas evolve and build in previous ones. As stated in my text file, my TIG pulser was built on others' ideas that I credited. But, Oakden's TIG pulser is just too much of a copy.

The iVAC's explanation the delay-on...and a delay-off... feature is just too close to mine to be independently developed concepts.

But, that's just my biased opinion.

ken
 

mneary

New Member
If I published it and never tried to manufacture it myself, I guess I'd feel flattered that somebody picked up the ball.

Would have been awfully nice if they had given credit where it's due.
 

jpanhalt

Well-Known Member
Most Helpful Member
I doubt those manufacturers will give credit to you. The real rub will be if they patented it and you then try to patent and/or manufacture it.

I was at an academic institution that had a policy of not patenting medical devices. The philosophy was that such inventions were for the public good. Then, a competing lab patented one of the tests we developed and tried to charge us royalties to use it ourselves. Our policy on IP changed overnight.

IP is a tricky area of law. Prior disclosure is only one factor, and lawsuits are extremely expensive. I do feel your pain though. I think open-source licensing is a breath of fresh air in the area, but am not sure it would apply in your examples.

John
 

BrownOut

Banned
That's interesting, but I agree we share our knowledge without conditions. I am aware that some of the projects I and others aided on were being developed as commercial products. Makes me think about changing form corporate cubicle prisoner to tech consultant. I know of one of our members who once consulted professionally. Now that I'm out of work, I'm thinking about the options.

PS If I do become a consultant and get stuck on something, you can bet believe I'm going to ask for help from the geniuses here!
 
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mneary

New Member
Publication of an idea will prevent anyone from enforcing a subsequent patent on the same idea. Called 'defensive publication'. Some of my ideas were published so we didn't have to patent but still were guaranteed the right to use.
 
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jpanhalt

Well-Known Member
Most Helpful Member
Publication of an idea will prevent anyone from enforcing a subsequent patent on the same idea.

It is much more complex than that. Patents are for inventions, not ideas. If you publish an idea, and someone subsequently patents an invention, you might claim it was obvious from prior art, but you have an uphill fight.

If one is serious about protecting IP, they need to go through the steps and pay the money to proper counsel.

John
 

microtexan

New Member
"I have no claim except that they were made for my job and I suppose that the intellectual property does belong to my employer. "

I might suggest, if it was in fact you made them for your employer, then possibly you should not have posted them on the World Wide Web.

Your employer, in effect, has paid for research and development of some other companies "product" with no other return.

There are just too many unscrupulous scabs out there waiting.:(
 
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