Artificial Intelligence Should Qualify As Inventors, Said Artificial Inventor Project


Artificial Intelligence has came a long way, and that it has become smarter than ever.

With humans applying these intelligent machines to work on many burdening tasks, AIs can indeed discover new things that humans couldn't. This is why the team at Artificial Inventor Project wants the laws to allow AI systems to be recognized as inventors, just like humans.

Existing intellectual property laws don’t allow AI systems to be recognized as inventors. This is because legislation only allows humans to be recognized as inventors, making AI-generated innovations cannot be patented. According to the team, this can threaten the integrity of the patent system and the potential to develop life-changing innovations.

This would also deprive the owners/creators of the AI of the legal protections they need for the inventions that their systems create.

The Artificial Inventor Project team has been testing the limitations of these rules by filing patent applications that designate a machine as the inventor.

The team made the applications on behalf of Dr Stephen Thaler, the creator of an AI system called DABUS, which was listed as the inventor of a food container in which robots can grasp and flash warning light to attract attention during emergencies.

The European Patent Office (EPO) and the United Kingdom Intellectual Property Office (UKIPO) both rejected the team's application.

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The patent offices denied the applications because the term "inventor" should only designated to a human being and not a machine.

The Artificial Inventor Project team argues that without AIs capable of becoming inventors could encourage applicants to falsely humans inventors, compelling them to claim credit for work that they have never done. This would in turn devalue the meaning of "inventorship".

The team at Artificial Inventor Project considers AIs to be listed as inventors, and the owners of the AIs be the assignee or owner of the patents. In its case, the team lists DABUS AI as the inventor, with the AI’s owner listed as the patent applicant and prospective owner of any of the issued patents.

If the laws allow AIs to listed as inventors, businesses would be encouraged to invest in developing AI systems, and be more confident that they could patent their creations' work. Ultimately, this would help AIs to further create life-changing innovations.

“It will be accurate about inventorship, maintain the innovation commercialization and disclosure incentives of the patent system, and most promote the development of inventive AI,” explained Ryan Abbott, a professor of law and health sciences at the UK’s University of Surrey, who led the Artificial Inventor Project team.

He believes that if the policies are not updated to reflect the most current technological advances, humanity as a whole can suffer.

According to the Artificial Inventor Project on its website:

"The patent applications we have filed for the inventions conceived by DABUS (GB1816909.4 for a Food Container and GB1818161.0 for Devices and Methods for Attracting Enhanced Attention) are not intended to force a particular view into patent law, we cannot do that, but to open the debate. While we have our own opinions, which we set out below, it is important that we hear and discuss all points of view."

Another advantage of having AIs as inventors is that, AIs doesn't have a "finiteexistence" as humans do.

In the in the case where a human inventor passes away. With only humans being allowed as inventors, that human invention can be lost to humankind.

Because AIs can live on longer than humans, "an invention made by an AI system could remain hidden from the public indefinitely."

"We have already touched upon the necessary sequence in the determination of ownership, specifically that the first step has to be the identification of the inventor (that is, the true deviser of the invention), as without knowing the inventor one cannot determine who owns the invention. The provision does not and cannot work the other way around, that is first determining who could own the invention and therefrom identify an 'inventor'. We submit this is the sequence that underlies the argument that an AI system cannot be named as inventor because it cannot have any ownership rights in the invention."