Have An Idea For An Invention? Turn It Into A Success
Do you or a loved one need help with an Invention? Read below to find more on how to develop and protect your inventions.
Inventing seems to be an almost primal thing within humans. Problem solving and creating solutions for everyday problems just seems to be the human default mental settings throughout day-to-day activities for ages. People have been coming up with new and better ideas and ways of doing things for centuries with the first ever recorded patent issued in 1421, Italy, to Filippo Brunelleschi. This patent was for a self-invented marble stone transport system that was rigged onto a large ship which gave him sole ownership of the idea and invention. As Filippo Brunelleschi found out, patents are very important for inventors as it is a way to make sure your idea is not stolen or copied by someone else. Luckily, times have changed for the better in this field and the process of developing and protecting your inventions has become easier than ever. Read below to find out how to develop, protect, and maintain your newly created inventions.
Developing Your Invention
The development phase of inventing is often one that makes or breaks your journey to success. The reason being that this is the phase where your idea gains flesh and life, or not. This area also comes with a lot of research, failures, revisions, and prototypes to make sure it is perfect for launch.
While your idea may be groundbreaking at this point it is still just that, an idea. And it needs to be recorded. When developing your invention, you need to document it. The patent office requires documentation for proof of idea. This means you need to write down every aspect of your invention even down to the number of screws it needs. The more you can list, the better. This is why many inventors keep what is referred to as an Inventor's Journal, a notebook with numbered consecutive pages that cannot be replaced. Many of these journals can be found at any bookstore like Barnes and Noble. But any notebook will do if it follows those two guidelines for your Inventors Journal.
Research your invention well beforehand. Just because something does not exist within your circle of influence does not mean it has not already been made. You can go to the US Patent Office website and check out the lists of patented inventions to make sure your invention is indeed original.
Protect an Invention
Like anything valuable, an invention needs protection. Though the golden era of piracy is over, remnants still linger under new guises ready to snatch up unprotected inventions. Just look at Thomas Edison. He nearly lost several of his inventions because he forgot to protect them.
Protection for an invention comes in the way of a patent. The US patent offices are the authority on patents within the US. There are two main types of patents you can apply for, and which one you use depends heavily on what it is you are inventing. The Utility Patent relates to new machines or manufacturing processes. The other patent type is called a Design Patent for ornamental designs. These patents are easy to fill out on your own, but it is highly recommended that you have a professional look over your patent before submitting it, however. These professionals are creatively called ‘Patent Professionals’ and are located usually through online searches or through the patent offices. Strong or valuable inventions will always be copied and redistributed, which is why having a patent on your design becomes an important thing. If your design becomes infringed upon, the patent allows you to take legal action against whoever is stealing your carefully thought-out designs. Usually this comes by way of a cease-and-desist order.
Apps and Software to Help with New Inventions
Developing and creating your invention from start to finish used to be a taxing and labor-intensive endeavor. Luckily, as more people patented and distributed their designs, the public now has apps that aid in the inventing process. From apps to help you get inspired to finalizing your creation you can be sure there is one out there for your specific needs. Here are just a few:
IDEO Method Cards- Developed by the IDEO company for inventors. This app helps with inspiration in the form of cards. These 51 cards are designed to stimulate and inspire creativity.
Evernote- Keeping organized is the bread and butter of an inventor, which sometimes can be a harder task than making the invention in the first place. Luckily there is Evernote. Evernote is a great app for note organization. The app even allows you to add in pictures or voice memos for easy organizational bliss.
EazyDraw- a beautifully designed artistic app that enables the user to draw out their ideas using vector art. This app comes with an easy-to-use scaler and a wide assortment of colors to choose from. Showing the world your idea has never been easier.Patent Legal Coach- Do not let the often-confusing process of patenting your design daunt you. The Patent Legal Coach app helps you learn and understand the whole process in a way that is concise and clear. When dealing with legal terms, having them concise and clear is a godsend.