Ex parte HEDBERG et al. - Page 5




              Appeal No. 95-3658                                                                                                                          
              Application 07/777,877                                                                                                                      

              address, a store for a defective column address, and a comparator.  "The stores retain defective memory                                     

              cell addresses which the comparator sequentially compares against the address data sequentially output                                      

              by the buffer.  When the comparator senses a match, a control signal is generated to initiate substitution of                               

              spare memory cells for the defective main memory cells."  (Abstract.)                                                                       

                       Claims 1-8, 10-12, and 16-17 stand rejected under 35 U.S.C.  103 as being unpatentable over                                       

              Harns and Eaton.  The examiner finds that "Harns does not teach having a first and second register to hold                                  

              the address of the faulty row/columns located on the same chip as the memory array" (Final Rejection, page                                  

              2; see also Examiner's Answer, page 3).  The examiner finds that Eaton discloses storing the defective row                                  

              and column addresses in stores on the same chip as the memory array and concludes that this would have                                      

              suggested to the artisan placing memory failure registers on the same chip as the memory array (Final                                       

              Rejection, page 2; Examiner's Answer, page 3).                                                                                              

                                                                   OPINION                                                                                

                       We affirm-in-part.                                                                                                                 

                       The level of ordinary skill is not argued, so we find the references to be representative of the level                             

              of skill in the art.  See In re Oelrich, 579 F.2d 86, 91, 198 USPQ 210, 214 (CCPA 1978) ("the PTO                                           

              usually must evaluate both the scope and content of the prior art and the level of ordinary skill solely on the                             

              cold words of the literature").  Cf. Chore-Time Equipment Inc. v. Cumberland Corp., 713 F.2d 774, 779                                       

              n.2, 218 USPQ 673, 676 n.2 (Fed. Cir. 1983) ("We hold only that an invention may be held to have been                                       

              obvious (or nonobvious) without a specific finding of a particular level of skill in the art where, as here, the                            

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