Ex parte CLEMENTS - Page 5




          Appeal No. 2000-0788                                       Page 5           
          Application No. 09/017,618                                                  


          1596, 1598 (Fed. Cir. 1988) and In re Lintner, 458 F.2d 1013,               
          1016, 173 USPQ 560, 562 (CCPA 1972).                                        




               A critical step in analyzing the patentability of claims               
          pursuant to 35 U.S.C.  103 is casting the mind back to the                 
          time of invention, to consider the thinking of one of ordinary              
          skill in the art, guided only by the prior art references and               
          the then-accepted wisdom in the field.  See In re Dembiczak,                
          175 F.3d 994, 999, 50 USPQ2d 1614, 1617 (Fed. Cir. 1999).                   
          Close adherence to this methodology is especially important in              
          cases where the very ease with which the invention can be                   
          understood may prompt one "to fall victim to the insidious                  
          effect of a hindsight syndrome wherein that which only the                  
          invention taught is used against                                            
          its teacher."  Id. (quoting W.L. Gore & Assocs., Inc. v.                    
          Garlock, Inc., 721 F.2d 1540, 1553, 220 USPQ 303, 313 (Fed.                 
          Cir. 1983), cert. denied, 469 U.S. 851 (1984)).                             


               Most if not all inventions arise from a combination of                 
          old elements.  See In re Rouffet, 149 F.3d 1350, 1357, 47                   







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