The highest court in the land has moved to uphold a circuit court ruling that rejected two inventors seeking a patent on an intangible business idea. (Specifically, a method for account for weather risk in commodities trading calculations.)
The case, Bilski v. Kappos, could have broad implications for those seeking patents on clean-tech and green-tech innovations. That's because it will apply a more rigorous standard to the specifics of an idea: requiring that a "method" (or essentially a business process idea) of doing something be tied to a specific technology or thing.
The development comes at a time when the U.S. Patent Office is running a special program intended to help accelerate the patent awards process for certain applications that are already in progress. The idea is that clean-tech is so vital to our nation's future, that certain requests should be jumped to the front of the queue. The government recently extended the initiative to cover more green technologies.