You Be the Judge: Rembrandt Technologies v. Cablevision

The Rembrandt Technologies v. Cablevision oral argument took place last week.  This appears to be a rather high-stakes patent litigation involving multiple cable companies.  The technology at issue concerns a viterbi decoder for a trellis encoded signal.  The patent that is the subject of the oral argument is U.S. patent 5,243,627.

This is an opportunity for you to be the judge of the claim construction issue and to see if your prediction matches the forthcoming panel decision.

1)  Do you think “signal point” would have had a plain and ordinary meaning to one of ordinary skill in the art?

2)  If “signal point” did not have a plain and ordinary meaning, did the “present invention” language, Abstract, “Summary of the Invention,” and repeated embodiments using only two-dimensional signal points limit the meaning of “signal point” to a two-dimensional signal point.  Or, if “signal point” did have a plain and ordinary meaning, did those portions of the specification serve as a clear and unmistakable disavowal of dimensions other than two?

3)  Did the paragraph beginning

“The foregoing merely illustrates the principles of the invention. Thus although the illustrative embodiment utilizes a four-dimensional signaling scheme, the invention can be used with signaling schemes of any dimensionality. “

cause one of ordinary skill in the art to believe that the claims should encompass signal schemes of any dimensionality?

You can listen to the oral argument [here].

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