Roger von Oech

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Gavin Heaton

Congratulations, Roger! The hard work pays off ... and this demonstrates that having a good idea is just the beginning!

Jason Hilbourne

That is outstanding, Roger! Not many folks hold patents, and even fewer have written their own "patentese". Well done.


I believe in determination. As long as the intention is good, time does not matter... because you have the best reason why.

Congratulations this is a beautiful victory!

Cam Beck

"Third, I wanted to see if a regular small-time inventor (me) would be able to figure out the patent arcana without a lawyer."

Roger - You are less "regular" than "extraordinary." Not everyone could have worked through that maze... I'm trying to figure out the patent office, and quite frankly I cannot discern a consistent principle on which they base their decisions.

Kudos to you.

Roger von Oech

Gavin and Luc: Thanks for the kind wishes. It was an interesting process. It was an eye-opening process to go through.

Jason: Thanks. Good luck with your patent process.

Cam: "Not everyone could have worked through that maze." I'll tell you some interesting stories some time!

David Armano

Wow Roger, congratulations. I wouldn't have been able to pull off something like that. Wonderful news.

David Warner

Congratulations! I think it's fantastic that you did it without a patent attorney.


Mark McGuinness

Congratulations! Glad your patent patience paid off.



Three fold kudos - first on getting patent, second on doing it yourself, and third on getting it granted in remarkable time - 32 months from file to issue is REALLY short. I think it has a lot to do with the high novelty and that isn't anything else similar to the Ball of Whacks out there.

Robert Hruzek

Roger, congratulations! Don't take this the wrong way, it's meant as a complement: You remind me of my dog! :-D

Paula Palmer

Congratulations Roger! An amazing accomplishment!

Shakespeare's Fool

Congratulations both on the patent and on building a network of friends that included the ones who helped you on the patent.

Kris Bordessa

Talk about tenacity! Congrats on the patent - these look wonderful.

Valeria Maltoni

Imagine if you had to go through the process in Italy! On the other hand -- it took two days (and before Christmas) to renew my Italian passport and I am now going on 12+ weeks for my US passport. Guess I should have learned a lot more about the mess they're in before I sent my only precious traveling card for renewal, huh?


Many congratulations! What's the old saying, "If it was easy, everybody would be doing it." It makes the victory so much more worth winning. You've been an inspiration for me for many years. Keep stepping out!

joe ullman

congrats, but just for your readers info, I personally consider the patent office and "patents" to be a fraud and waste of time. YOu can make and market something without a patent, and (especially the big boys) can "steal" a patent just by simply altering a small aspect of a prior patent. There's little you can do, and large companies have teams of people who comb patents looking for stuff they can steal - I mean, modify. Don't waste your time. Find someone you can trust and just make it and sell it.


How much did it cost and how much time did you put into it?

Terry Moore

The advice to be persistent is an excellent advice.

Question: Did the 32 months include the Provisional date of filing or did it start with date of the Full-blown application?

I filed my Provisional in December,2005 and the Full-blown application in December 0f 2005. It was published in May this year. The USPTO has made numerous errors so far indicating that they do not have a quality check system in place. No rejection or office action yet. I will be extremely persistent.

P.S USPTO are hiring patent examiners everyday.

Manu Kovic

Congrats! I also want to do a patent.

Question: Could you alter your claims based on descriptions? Does USPTO complaint about changing claims just because it's different than before?
I'd really glad if you teach me some tricks, I'm encouraged to follow your steps.

Jeff Wolfe

what do you think of companies that offer to develop your idea for sales, licensing, developlment, marketing, etc.? It seems like the companies like to have about $10,000 before they will start on your project. My gut on this is that it is wasted money and that a patentable idea and sellable idea should be able to be sold directly to the manufacturer and or sales outlet, but I want the opinion of someone who has done this before. thanks Jeff Wolfe

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