Technology Tutorials are great for a variety of reasons, but sometimes they can feel like unavoidable hassles. Whether you’re wasting time searching for passwords you swore you wrote down, or tediously trying to resize windows so you can view two of them at once, there are plenty of shortcuts and hacks that can make your tech feel less like a hassle and more like a helpful tool.
The District of Delaware’s Judges typically require parties to submit a “Technology Tutorial Describing the Technology and Matters at Issue” around the same time they file their opening claim construction briefs. Parties interpret this requirement in a variety of ways, and the format for these tutorials can vary, but they generally take the form of narrated, animated videos that are submitted to the Court under seal.
Tech tutorials have the potential to significantly impact claims construction opinions, and in many cases they do. However, they are not without their costs and risks, and in some instances parties who submit a tech tutorial may hurt themselves more than help their case.
For example, it’s important to remember that a tutorial should describe the patented technology neutrally and not include comparisons with the accused product. While it can be tempting to use the tutorial as a platform for advocacy, such arguments are likely to confuse and frustrate a knowledgeable reader, so they should be avoided. Also, it’s often helpful to keep in mind that the judge may have already read your opponent’s technology tutorial, so you should try to avoid introducing new information in yours that the judge did not see in your opponent’s tutorial.
Finally, if you have any concerns about how your tutorial may be received by the court, it’s always a good idea to discuss them with local counsel or your experienced IMS graphics team. They can be a wealth of information about the judges in your court, their preferences for technology tutorials, and how they might view your specific technology. They may also have insights on the types of technology tutorials that have worked best for them in other courts or in other proceedings, or they might have insight into runtime length preferences that may not be spelled out in your court’s orders.
While the answer to whether or not to submit a tech tutorial is highly case-specific, in most cases it’s likely worth doing. With a little planning and preparation, a tech tutorial can help your case by providing the Court with a clear and concise understanding of the underlying technology. A well-written, professional-looking tech tutorial can also leave a positive impression on the Court that may ultimately affect the written opinion.