The decision today of the Full Court in Commissioner of Patents v Rokt further clarifies the position in relation to whether a computer implemented method can be patentable in Australia.
The decision follows a series of decisions considering similar issues, which each focus on whether particular software can be the subject of a patent. In summary, the Full Court finds that the software in question in this case, which related to a method of presenting targeted advertising to a consumer, was not a patentable invention, as it was merely a method for using the well known and understood functions of a computer.
The decision reinforces the fact that a method which gets a computer to do something it has not done before is not patentable – to be patentable the method would have to enable the computer to do something which it was previously unable to do.
The law of patentable subject matter in Australia is illogical and discriminates against inventors who implement their inventions in software.