Ex Parte POERSCHMANN - Page 4

             Appeal No. 2000-0510                                                                                   
             Application No. 08/792,966                                                                             

                    many different ways.  The term "nonpositively" is unclear as to the specific type               
                    of connection therebetween.                                                                     
                    The term "positive" has several different interpretations, including formally or                
             arbitrarily set, definitely set, admitting of no modification, precise, specific, affirmative,         
             certain, tending in the direction regarded as that of increase, progress, etc.,2 depending on the      

             particular context in which it is used.  The term "nonpositively," without further clarification,      
             likewise could take on any one of several meanings, such as variable (admitting of                     
             modification), imprecise, uncertain or negative, for example.                                          
                    Keeping in mind that the definiteness of language employed must be analyzed, not in a           
             vacuum, but always in light of the teachings of the prior art and of the particular application        
             disclosure as it would be interpreted by one possessing the ordinary level of skill in the             
             pertinent art (see In re Moore, 439 F.2d 1232, 1235, 169 USPQ 236, 238 (CCPA 1971)), we                
             turn to the appellant's underlying disclosure to determine whether it provides any guidance as         
             to the meaning of "nonpositively" in the context of the appellant's invention.  The appellant's        
             specification, on page 4, informs us that                                                              
                    [e]ach drive motor is nonpositively joined by its housing 31 to housing 71 of its               
                    gear drive 7.  In addition, housings 71 of both gear drives 7 are nonpositively                 
                    mounted on portal axle 1.                                                                       
                    The sole drawing in the appellant's application does not illustrate any connection              
             between the motor housing 31 and the gear drive housing 71.  Further, the illustration of the          

                    2 Webster's New World Dictionary, Third College Edition (Simon & Schuster, Inc. 1988).          

Page:  Previous  1  2  3  4  5  6  7  8  9  Next 

Last modified: November 3, 2007