A patent on a patent system.
While the idea may sound redundant, officials at one Oklahoma City company believe their future on the Internet depends on it.
Franklin Gray Patents, an Oklahoma City-based patent services company, has filed for a U.S. patent for an online patent development and management system.
The system integrates research, document drafting, and form preparation capabilities with case management, online professional assistance and help, security and billing functions, all of which are available through the use of an ordinary Web browser. The system has potential applications to other types of legal and accounting documents as well.
In the next phase of development, Franklin Gray Patents will form strategic partnerships with patent law firms, corporations with substantial in-house patent departments and Web service providers to bring the system to the public.
Robert Frantz, the owner and manager of Franklin Gray Patents, said the system could be used by a wide variety of potential customers, including independent inventors, patent law firms, and corporations.
"The system integrates communications between inventors and their patent counsel, online data searching and collection, document assembly, case history management, and billing operations into one, easy-to-access and highly secure environment," Frantz said Wednesday. "While it will likely be adopted early by large law firms and corporate law departments to coordinate patent development activities between multiple sites and offices, we also believe there is tremendous potential for implementation as a `dot-com' service provider technology -- enabling online assisted self-drafting of patent applications. …