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84 DESIGN007 MAGAZINE I SEPTEMBER 2021 can be found in the U.S. Constitution, Article 1, Section 8, Clause 8, which reads in its entirety: "e congress shall have power… To promote the progress of science and useful arts, by secur- ing for limited times to authors and inventors the exclusive right to their respective writings and discoveries." e idea for providing patents is one that the founders of this nation borrowed from the old world in England in the Statute of Monopo- lies of 1624, wherein the English Parliament endowed inventors with the sole right to their inventions for a period of 14 years. It also seems clear from the words that there was an understanding and likely even a prescient knowledge that the protection of the rights of inventors, by granting them limited monopoly over their ideas for a period of time, was key to getting them to share ideas and discoveries that would be important to the building of a new nation. ere was intent to offer protec- tion only to the writings and discoveries of authors and inventors and then only to the end of promoting science and the useful arts which would benefit the nation. How It Benefits is protection of intellectual property and right to practice safely one's ideas has proven to be a magnet for many who came to this coun- try to seek out their fortunes in this new land of opportunity with government guarantees and, in the process, to make life better not only for themselves but for everyone else in society. It continues to this day. e concept of the patent is now universally embraced at high levels on an intellectual basis, if not in actual practice, everywhere down to the level of business. Today, while a great many countries have their own patent systems, since 1970, the Patent Cooperation Treaty (PCT), an international patent law treaty to provide a unified procedure for filing patent applications to protect inventions from member countries, has been in place. A patent application filed under the PCT is referred to as international application (also known as a PCT application), however, the PCT does not lead to the grant- ing of an international patent, as one must still file separately for a patent in each nation where protection is sought. is is an ongoing effort to try to find coop- eration among the many different countries of the world to make something more use- ful and enforceable. However, concerns over commerce and competitiveness have caused many business leaders to turn a blind eye to patents, especially in some of the newer mem- bers of the international business community where the idea of intellectual property is not given much weight. In fact, the more cynical (practical?) folks in most industries commonly assume that a patent is of no value until it is tested in court and backed by the weight and force of governments which can restrict trade. is widely-held belief is something that must delight litigators around the globe, for they make their greatest personal gains from con- flict. ey are always assured a win, no matter what the outcome is for their client. As many haggard veteran inventors have observed: "If you think getting a patent is expensive, try defending one." ere is another other form of intellectual property such as trademarks and copyrights which are likely familiar to most readers. Copy- right law can be traced to the English Statute of 1710, which secured to authors of books the This is an ongoing effort to try to find cooperation among the many different countries of the world to make something more useful and enforceable.

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