Each Quarter Unisys publishes the names of employees who have been awarded patents by the US Patent and Trademark Office on Unisys’s behalf. These patents form a key piece of our portfolio of intellectual property. Having your name on a patent marks you as a special person … an inventor … one who can see the solution to a problem before others can … sometimes even before others can see there is a problem or opportunity at all.
For an idea to be deemed patentable it must be non-obvious to one skilled in “the art”. So, in the case of computer systems engineering, the idea, concept or mechanism must not be obvious to one’s peers not only at Unisys … but at IBM, HP, Microsoft, Apple or anywhere else as well. Often Patents rely on “prior art” and in doing so redefine “the state of the art” which is literally used to describe the highest level of development at any point in time. So, while the “state of the art” of a paper clip hasn’t changed much since it was first invented, the “state of the art” of a computing system has … In fact it has changed significantly and it constantly changes.
On July 14th Unisys announced the inventors for 2Q, 2010 in Dotcom. Six patents were awarded to a total of 12 inventors, this time all from the Engineering and Supply Chain (ESC) organization in TCIS. All but one was related to ClearPath systems and software … and all advanced “the state of the art”. 2Q was not a “special” quarter in this regard. Quarter by Quarter, Year by Year, Engineering produces significant amounts of intellectual property (IP) for Unisys, much of it patentable and the majority of it ClearPath related.
IP is all good, there are a number of positive aspects of IP for the company as a whole, but today I want to focus on the fact that this IP is tangible evidence that Unisys is investing and continues to invest in technology and as a result ClearPath continues to be a contemporary, “state of the art” computing system.
Several of this Quarter’s patents are related to the ClearPath NextGen platforms and their companion MCP and OS 2200 operating systems. This IP reaches our customer’s hands in the form of platforms and software products that allow them to run efficient, reliable, mission critical operations using “state of the art” systems developed and supplied by Unisys.
It is no easy task to evolve a product line continuously, to remain architecturally sound and to incorporate current “state of the art” technologies. If you look at a current ClearPath system you will see just that … a modern interpretation of a classic architecture. Technologies like Metering, Capacity on Demand, Workload Management, and ePortal have all advanced the” state of the art” and have forever changed the way our clients procure, operate and use their systems. It is interesting to know that what hasn’t changed is what they use them for … these systems sit at the core of financial, transportation, communication and government agencies simply because they just work … year after year while preserving our client’s technology investment and allowing them to embrace contemporary technologies … the current “state of the art”.
For many things “state of the art” is momentary and fleeting, for ClearPath it simply is what it has always been.