So you want to change the world?

The Patent Game is a book written specifically for inventors, entrepreneurs, and business leaders that want to improve their patent knowledge – or, as I refer to it, IP IQ – to leverage patents as a key driver of business value. 

So, you are ready to change the world?

Are you ready to learn the important basics of patent law and how to develop a sound patent strategy without having to slog through a boring textbook? Then you’ve come to the right place! The Patent Game is a book written specifically for inventors, entrepreneurs, and business leaders that want to improve their patent knowledge – or, as I refer to it, IP IQ™ – to leverage patents as a key driver of business value.

Patent law often seems dense and intimidating, but few things can add as much value to a business as a sound IP strategy. From the hopeful contestants on Shark Tank to the largest Fortune 500 companies, success stories in technology hinge upon a foundational patent strategy. The rewards are nearly limitless for those willing to learn the key concepts needed to develop a personalized game plan. The Patent Game makes that knowledge more accessible than ever. By reading this book, you will appreciate how dynamic and exciting the pursuit of patent protection is and you’ll be equipped with the ability to spot opportunities, avoid landmines, and develop a strategy to build maximum value for your specific business or innovation.

As a patent attorney and law firm partner, I’ve worked with hundreds of inventors, entrepreneurs, and businesses to help them unlock the value of intellectual property protection. I’ve searched for an accessible, comprehensive, and business-centric resource to introduce my clients to the subject of patent law, but every book on this topic was a dry law school textbook, more or less. I could not understand why such an exciting and dynamic discipline was being made to look so esoteric and unapproachable, so I decided to write the book I’d want to read if I was just getting started. I’m passionate about this subject matter and I love to teach, so I’m hopeful that The Patent Game will allow you to enjoy learning this vital information and, most importantly, help you apply the knowledge to your own inventions and technology.

I’ve always loved board, card, and word games. It’s a particular pleasure of mine to learn the constraints and rules of a game and, once I’ve mastered those basics, to creatively operate within those boundaries to achieve the game’s objective. The law is no different in many respects and patent law, in particular, shares many similarities to a complex and intellectually challenging board game. There is an upfront commitment to understand the basics and fundamentals, but with that core knowledge there is tremendous room for creativity to achieve the best outcome. You might win a few bucks from your friends if you’re good at poker, but if you master the patent game it could be worth millions.

The format of The Patent Game is not unlike the rules on the back of a board game box. In the first half of this book, I’ll walk you through the players in the game, what the board looks like, why your IP IQ matters, and the key pieces you’ll need to understand to play this dynamic game. Woven into these sections are helpful analogies to familiar games like Monopoly, Risk, chess, and poker to help make the information more meaningful and memorable. It’s not necessary to be familiar with or a fan of these games for the book to be valuable and helpful, but if you happen to enjoy them then it’s an added bonus!

In the second half of the book, you’ll use your new-found knowledge of the fundamentals to navigate through a number of different patent protection strategies to find one that suits your goals. There isn’t a one-size-fits-all strategy for businesses and innovations, but there are approaches that work particularly well depending upon what factors and constraints – such as speed, scope, or cost – are most compelling. Each of these strategies includes an introduction with a game-related analogy, an enumeration of various pros and cons, a play-by-play of how that strategy typically unfolds over time, and a relevant real-world example. Consider it a sort of “choose your own adventure” where you can read through each and every strategy or, if you’re in a hurry, use the Patent Plinko decision tree to focus on those strategies most likely to fit your business.

I hope you enjoy reading The Patent Game as much as I’ve enjoyed writing it and that it gives you the foundation of knowledge you need to confidently achieve your loftiest goals in innovation and inventorship.

Listen Up!

In our first series of The Patent Game Podcast, The Basics, we’ll break down the foundational elements of the patent process in bite-sized (and sometimes moderately entertaining) chunks. We’ll cover patent application types, tricks and tools, the anatomy of a patent, and other practical information you can apply directly to your business or innovation.

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