AI Cannot Be Inventors, US Patent Office Rules

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    On Monday, the United States Patent and Trademark Office published a decision that claims artificial intelligences cannot be inventors. Only “natural persons” currently have the right to get a patent. From a report: Last year, two relatively mundane patents — one for a shape-shifting food container and another for an emergency flashlight — posed an existential question for international patent regulations around the world: Does an inventor have to be a human? These two inventions were the work of DABUS, an artificial intelligence system created by physicist and AI researcher Stephen Thaler. Now, the USPTO has decided that DABUS and any other AI cannot be listed as an inventor on a patent filing. Until now, US patent law was vague about whether machines could invent, referring to “individuals” as eligible inventors. Thaler, along with a group of patent law experts, argued that because Thaler didn’t have any expertise in containers or flashlights, and didn’t help DABUS make the inventions, it wouldn’t be right for him to be listed as the inventor. Read more of this story at Slashdot.

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