James Donald Smith, the Chief Administrative Patent Judge of the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) was the keynote speaker at the Boston Patent Law Association (BPLA) Annual Meeting on December 11, 2013 and gave a comprehensive, albeit somewhat tongue-in-check, report on the state of the PTAB.

Judge Smith remarked that early in his career as an IP attorney he worked for Nokia and that his employment often took him to Nokia’s headquarters in Finland.  He claimed to have met Mr. and Mrs. Claus and to have spent many hours with the Clauses at their summer home and reindeer reserve in Lapland.

Santa apparently gave Judge Smith advice that he has followed in overseeing the PTAB, the new appellate body established by the America Invents Act to hear challenges to issued patents as well as patent application appeals.
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