Engineering and Applied Sciences >> Technology and Public Policy

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Course Info

  • Course Number / Code:
  • 3.172 (Fall 2005) 
  • Course Title:
  • Inventions and Patents 
  • Course Level:
  • Undergraduate 
  • Offered by :
  • Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT)
    Massachusetts, United States  
  • Department:
  • Electrical Engineering and Computer Science 
  • Course Instructor(s):
  • Dr. Robert Rines 
  • Course Introduction:

  • 6.901 / 3.172 / 16.652 Inventions and Patents

    Fall 2005

    Course Highlights

    This course features a downloadable textbook on inventions and patents, Create or Perish, in the readings section. The textbook was written by the course instructor, Dr. Robert Rines, who has been inducted into the National Inventors Hall of Fame. In addition, exemplary student papers are also available in the projects section.

    Course Description

    This course explores the history of private and public rights in scientific discoveries and applied engineering, leading to the development of worldwide patent systems. The classes of invention protectable under the patent laws of the U.S., including the procedures in protecting inventions in the Patent Office and the courts will be examined. A review of past cases involving inventions and patents in:
    1. the chemical process industry and medical pharmaceutical, biological, and genetic-engineering fields;
    2. devices in the mechanical, ocean exploration, civil, and/or aeronautical fields;
    3. the electrical, computer, software, and electronic areas, including key radio, solid-state, computer and software inventions; and also
    4. software protection afforded under copyright laws.
    Periodic joint real-time class sessions and discussions by video-audio Internet conferencing, with other universities will also be conducted.

This course content is a redistribution of MIT Open Courses. Access to the course materials is free to all users.

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