IEEE Chicago/Rockford Consultants' Network; "Patenting Software related Inventions", VIRTUAL MEETING


Please join us for our bi-monthly Consultants' Network meeting on Monday, May 18th at 7:00 PM, with a featured talk on software patents in the US. Due to COVID-19, this will be ONLINE only. Our meetings are free and open to anyone who is interested, not just consultants or IEEE members.

IMPORTANT: In order to receive webex login credentials, you will need to register for this event with a valid email. You will recieve an email with the webex info on Monday around noon on the day of the event.


This webinar will feature a presentation from Joseph T Cygan, Intellectual Property Counsel at Cygan Law Offices. Joseph will be presenting on a topic that has become a common feature of the new, smart world, patent law as it applies to software. What can be patentable, what isn't? Join us and your fellow consultants to get some insight in the complex world of patent law.

IMPORTANT: You must register before May 18 to get the meeting information. Webex login/dial in information will be sent out Monday around noon.

  Date and Time




  • Paletine, Illinois
  • United States
  • About the IEEE Chicago/Rockford Consultants' Network

    The IEEE Chicago/Rockford Consultants' Network fosters and promotes the interests of technology consultants in the IEEE Chicago and Rock River Valley sections as a local affinity group within the IEEE-USA Alliance of IEEE Consultants Networks.

  • Starts 07 May 2020 08:30 AM
  • Ends 17 May 2020 11:00 PM
  • All times are America/Chicago
  • No Admission Charge
  • Register


Joseph Cygan
Joseph Cygan of Cygan Law Offices P.C.


Patenting Software Related Inventions; Navigating Patentability Under the USPTO Subject Matter Eligibility Guidelines

The 2014 Supreme Court case Alice Corp. Pty. Ltd. v. CLS Bank Int’l, et al., 573 U.S. 208 (2014) (“Alice”) has complicated the understanding of Subject Matter Eligibility (SME) for software related claims in the United States Patent and Trademark Office and in the courts. In Alice, the Supreme Court held that patent claims directed toward a certain software invention were not patent eligible because “the claims at issue" amounted to “nothing significantly more” than an instruction to apply an “abstract idea.” Since the Alice case holding, the notion of an “abstract idea” has caused significant issues for those seeking patent protection for software related inventions, as well as for patent owners because patent infringement defendants have used the "abstract idea" analysis as a weapon in the courts to invalidate patents. In the presentation, we’ll review how the USPTO has been applying the “abstract idea” analysis to patent claims and provide strategies for avoiding SME issues with software related inventions.


Mr. Cygan's law practice focuses on patent application preparation and prosecution for my clients before the United States Patent and Trademark Office, working in cooperation with international associate counsel to obtain patents worldwide under the Patent Cooperation Treaty and Paris Convention, patentability and infringement analysis and opinions, and various intellectual property related transactional matters.

Mr. Cygan has extensive experience in all aspects of patent procurement and technology patent portfolio development, and has personally drafted and prosecuted hundreds of patent applications for high-tech companies. He provides his clients with turnkey patent procurement services beginning with interviewing corporate inventors, including engineers and scientists, and preparing and prosecuting patent applications through to final disposition, including handling appeals before the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB). He also maintains a network of foreign counsel to assist in procurement of patents and trademarks internationally for my clients.

Mr. Cygan has assisted clients in handling cease and desist letters regarding patent, trademark, copyright and trade dress matters, and has defended client interests by resolving or negotiating and obtaining settlement agreements. He has also assisted clients with trademark consent agreements, patent, trademark and copyright licensing agreements, and software licensing agreements. He renders patentability opinions, non-infringement opinions, trademark clearance opinions, and freedom-to-operate opinions.

Address:2300 Barrington Road, Suite 400, Hoffman Estates, Illinois, United States, 60169


7:00pm – Webex Login

7:15pm – Announcements & Introductions

7:30pm - Presentation followed with Q&A

The IEEE Chicago / Rockford Consultants' Network would like to extend a special thanks to the MAKERSPACE AND ENTREPRENEUR CENTER at HARPER COLLEGE for their support of our past events. Though COVID-19 has disrupted their operations, you can learn more about the many exciting developments underway at this new, growing community by visiting