The best part of this job, by far and away, is the opportunity to work with extremely talented and enthusiastic inventors. In general, patent law is fun because the patent agent/attorney generally deals with happy, optimistic, and creative people. I often tell people that patent law is unique in that I only deal with happy people. There is no nastiness, fighting, heated arguments, or bad feelings. I suppose that may not be true when dealing with some examiners at the USPTO, but my experience is that a vast majority of the examiners are civil, intelligent, competent, and want to find a good solution.
Over the course of a year, I may have personal contact with maybe a hundred or more inventors. In many cases, these people are solid engineers, scientists, or developers who have identified a problem and solved the problem in an elegant manner. These inventors are the bread and butter of my day to day job, and they are always pleasant and responsive and working with them is a joy.
There are a couple of those inventors who have this intangible ‘thing’ about them that makes them special, and really gets me excited to work with them. These inventors are absolute experts in their field and whose excitement and giddiness about their technology is infectious. These inventors have an intuitive understanding of their technology that transcends the typical engineer or scientist.
This year, I distinctly remember a handful of inventors who were not just able to explain their invention, but there was this intangible and deep understanding that was way more than the conventional person. It was like their understanding was far more than book learning: it was a true expertise.
I had the pleasure of meeting such an inventor last month, and his enthusiasm was contagious. During the course of the meeting, he was grabbing sample parts off his bookshelf to explain various things, scribbling on a whiteboard, and, before I knew it, two hours had elapsed. I left that meeting excited to be part of something cool and knowing that I could bring my ideas, enthusiasm, background, and technical expertise to the table.
I get the pleasure of working with the best and brightest people in many different companies and with many good ideas. And the job is even more special when I get to work with one of the shining stars within that group.