米国でプログラムクレームがダメな根拠（2106.01 Computer-Related Nonstatutory Subject Matter）
2106.01 Computer-Related Nonstatutory Subject Matter [R-6]
I. FUNCTIONAL DESCRIPTIVE MATERIAL: “DATA STRUCTURES” REPRESENTING DESCRIPTIVE MATERIAL PER SE OR COMPUTER PROGRAMS REPRESENTING COMPUTER LISTINGS PER SE
Similarly, computer programs claimed as computer listings per se, i.e., the descriptions or expressions of the programs, are not physical “things.” They are neither computer components nor statutory processes, as they are not “acts” being performed. Such claimed computer programs do not define any structural and functional interrelationships between the computer program and other claimed elements of a computer which permit the computer program’s functionality to be realized.
In contrast, a claimed computer-readable medium encoded with a computer program is a computer element which defines structural and functional interrelationships between the computer program and the rest of the computer which permit the computer program’s functionality to be realized, and is thus statutory. See Lowry, 32 F.3d at 1583-84, 32 USPQ2d at 1035. Accordingly, it is important to distinguish claims that define descriptive material per se from claims that define statutory inventions.